Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Essential Real Estate Terms: Fiduciary


Whether first time home buyer or seasoned homeowner considering selling, there are a number of real estate terms that are essential to know. Today's word is Fiduciary.

Fiduciary—A relationship of trust created when a home buyer or home seller signs a contract with a REALTOR®. After a contract is signed, a real estate agent has several fiduciary duties that protect their client, This fiduciary relationship is not only effective throughout the transaction; it continues forever. This means as a first time buyer, once a contract is signed with an agent, that agent cannot tell anyone anything that is private about you and your situation. In Minnesota, these duties require the agent to be loyal, confidential, and obedient with their client's lawful instructions. They are accountable to the client and must disclose any information they learn that would be of benefit in the purchase of a home. Throughout the transaction and afterward, they must use reasonable care to protect their client's interests.

It is important for a first time buyer to understand what a fiduciary is because every seller that is listed with a real estate broker already has a contract in place. This means when a buyer calls the listing agent for information or stops by at an open house, the friendly REALTOR® asking about your ability to buy a home is under contract with and WORKING for the SELLER. This agent has a fiduciary duty to disclose EVERYTHING you say to the seller of the home. But it is not a two way street. The friendly agent cannot tell you anything that the seller doesn’t want you to know (unless it is about the condition of the property). Because of their contract, the agent cannot say why the seller is moving or if a price reduction is in the works.

As a home buyer, it is essential to interview potential agents to assist with the home search as soon as possible in the process. When good match is found, sign a contract with a REALTOR® so that your interests and information are protected. Then your REALTOR® can make calls to other agents on homes, set up private showings and assist you through the homebuying process. The agent you sign a contract with will be working for YOU! 


What if you just met the agent and you are not certain you want to work with this particular person? The contract does not have to be a long term commitment. I often sign up new home buyers for a couple of weeks and extend the contract once we have formed a stronger relationship. Rest assured that even if you decide to part ways with your agent, the fiduciary duty to keep your private information private continues forever.


Need to know more about buying or selling an home in the Minneapolis/St Paul area? Let me be your professional guide. If you are buying, selling or relocating to Minnesota and need help from a professional REALTOR®, give me, Teri Eckholm of Boardman Realty, a call or visit my website for a FREE Home Buyer Success Guide or FREE Home Value Report.http://terieckholm.com/buying-house-search.php I specialize in acreage and lakeshore properties in the north and east Twin Cities metro area including Ham Lake, Lino Lakes and all communities in the Forest Lake School District. Serving Anoka, Chisago, Ramsey and Washington Counties in Minnesota.

Copyright 2015 www.terieckholm.com

Monday, December 28, 2015

Failing Septic in Anoka County? There’s a Loan for That!



Replacing a failed septic system is costly. Installing a new mound system or drain field can cost $10,000 to $20,000 or even more. This is especially a concern in Anoka County near large bodies of water like Coon Lake and area wetlands. Homeowners with failing systems often delay replacing systems due to the expense which can contaminate groundwater and neighboring wells.

There is assistance for septic and well replacement in Anoka County. The Agricultural Best Management Practices Loan (AgBMP) is part of a water quality program that provides LOW INTEREST LOANS to land owners for replacing subsurface sewage treatment systems (SSTS) that can be repaid as a special assessment on annual taxes.  There are no income restrictions on these loans but there is an application and review process to assess whether the system meets the priority replacement criteria.  What does this mean? If the system a direct risk to public health, contaminating surface water or in a highly sensitive area, it will likely meet the criteria.


The loan program is also available to replace private wells.


 CLICK HERE for additional details on the low interest septic loans and current funding availability.


Need to know more about buying or selling an Anoka County home? Let me be your professional guide. If you are buying, selling or relocating to Minnesota and need help from a professional REALTOR®, give me, Teri Eckholm of Boardman Realty, a call or visit my website for a FREE Home Buyer Success Guide or FREE Home Value Report.http://terieckholm.com/buying-house-search.php I specialize in acreage and lakeshore properties in the north and east Twin Cities metro area including Ham Lake, Lino Lakes and all communities in the Forest Lake School District. Serving Anoka, Chisago, Ramsey and Washington Counties in Minnesota.

Copyright 2015 www.terieckholm.com

Get My Lino Lakes Minnesota Home Value!


Even though the snow has just arrived and in many cases, the halls are still decked, numerous people are thinking of buying and selling homes. Are you planning to sell your home in Lino Lakes, Minnesota in 2016? Do you need more information on where to start? 

When you need to sell a home in the Lino Lakes area, I will help you get the process started quickly. My innovative marketing and top notch negotiating skills will get your property sold FAST and at the best possible price too.  A market analysis by a professional REALTOR® is your first step in the home selling process. It will give you an ACCURATE VALUE of your current home...not a quick computer generated one. 

Interested? Read testimonials from my sellers

The Lino Lakes winter market is active! Home buyers are still searching for acreage homes but few good, affordable options have listed in the north and east Minneapolis/St. Paul metro since fall. 38 homes sold in the city of Lino Lakes since November but only 25 listed. AND 6 of these homes are already under contract! Currently there are 70 homes actively listed in the Lino Lakes area (47 previously owned and 23 new construction or lots for homes to be built). Only a handful of these properties are priced at a number affordable to the average home buyer. Listing your home in the next few months could maximize your sales price due to the low housing inventory but continued demand in the area.

Selling acreage is one of my specialities. I have 15+ years experience with septic systems, compliance tests, well disclosures and other rural real estate issues. Not on septic? That's okay too. I sell homes in the city, suburbs and rural areas.

For additional information about working with me, contact me to obtain a FREE Home Value Report. Or better yet call me, Teri Eckholm/Boardman Realty 651-336-7073 and arrange a no cost/obligation market analysis on your home today.

FYI-- I do answer my own phone so when you call, you will be talking directly to me!



Copyright 2015 www.terieckholm.com

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Express Commute Ham Lake to Downtown Minneapolis!

 
East Bethel and Ham Lake residents who work in downtown Minneapolis can skip the frustrating traffic jams and backups! Two Park and Ride locations are located a hop, skip or jump from most Ham Lake and East Bethel homes!  
 
As a REALTOR
® in the north and east Twin Cities metro, I often am asked about the commute to downtown Minneapolis from the Ham Lake/East Bethel area. It is a concern for anyone considering a move north of Blaine. A normal traffic free commute down Hwy 65 from Ham Lake by car to downtown Minneapolis is about 40 minutes. Add in rush hour traffic and travel time can stretch the ride into the city by an additional 15-25 minutes especially with winter weather or summer road construction.  

Recently, Metro Transit expanded Express Route 865 to include 2 new pick up locations in East Bethel and Ham Lake.
The free parking and convenient locations have attracted several commuters.

The East Bethel Park and Ride lot is located at the East Bethel Movie Theatre just south of County Rd 22 off Hwy 65. 

The Ham Lake Park and Ride lot is convenient for those commuters a bit further south. The lot offers ample parking spaces and is located at Family of Christ Lutheran Church on Constance Ave just west of HWY 65.


***Check out the Route 865 schedule HERE! *** 


Route 265 currently offers 3 south bound and north bound trips daily. Departure times run at just before 6 AM with a last run approximately 7 AM and get commuters downtown in an stress free 45 minute ride! Using shoulders and commuter lanes gets the riders to their downtown workplace destination quickly and safely. North bound express rides start just after 3PM with a last pick up just after 5PM.

If you are considering moving to the north metro but avoided Ham Lake, East Bethel and Isanti due to the commute to Minneapolis, it might be time to expand your location choices. This route does make the commute to downtown Minneapolis a breeze! 


Need to know more about buying or selling a Twin Cities home? Let me be your professional guide. If you are buying, selling or relocating to Minnesota and need help from a professional REALTOR®, give me, Teri Eckholm of Boardman Realty, a call or visit my website for a FREE Home Buyer Success Guide or FREE Home Value Report.http://terieckholm.com/buying-house-search.php I specialize in acreage and lakeshore properties in the north and east Twin Cities metro area including Ham Lake, Lino Lakes and all communities in the Forest Lake School District. Serving Anoka, Chisago, Ramsey and Washington Counties in Minnesota.

Copyright 2015 www.terieckholm.com

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Express Commute Forest Lake to Downtown Minneapolis—Fast and Easy!

 
Forest Lake residents who work in downtown Minneapolis can skip the frustrating traffic jams and backups! There is a convenient commuter station, or transit center, is just a hop, skip or jump from most Forest Lake homes!
 
As a REALTOR
® in the north and east Twin Cities metro, I often am asked about the commute to downtown Minneapolis from the Forest Lake area. It is a concern for anyone considering a move to the Chisago, Forest Lake and Wyoming area. A normal traffic free commute from Forest Lake by car to downtown Minneapolis is about 45 minutes. Add in rush hour traffic and travel time can stretch the ride into the city by an additional 20-30 minutes especially with winter storms or summer road construction.

A few years back, Metro Transit started a Forest Lake express route which has since expanded to 2 pick up locations: The Forest Lake transit station and Running Aces in Columbus.
The free parking and convenient locations have attracted several commuters.

The Forest Lake Transit Station is located on the Hardwood Creek Trail just west of Highway 61 and 202nd Avenue about a mile south of Forest Lake High School.  This location is a great for parents of students who may have to drop off a student the high school, Century or Southwest Junior High as it is just minutes south of any of these schools.

The Running Aces lot is convenient for those commuters on the west side of 35E. It is a Park & Ride lot with ample space to park just off 35E on County Rd 23.


***Check out the Route 288 schedule HERE! *** 

Route 288 currently offers 7 south bound and 8 north bound trips daily. Departure times run at just before 6 AM with a last run approximately 8 AM and get commuters downtown in an stress free 45 minute ride! Using shoulders and commuter lanes gets the riders to their downtown workplace destination quickly and safely. Return express rides to Forest Lake start just after 3PM and run approximately every 25-30 minutes until approximately 5:45PM.

If you are considering moving to the north metro but avoided Chisago, Forest Lake and Wyoming due to the commute to Minneapolis, it might be time to expand your location choices. This route does make the commute to downtown Minneapolis a breeze! Communities like Chisago City, Hugo, North Branch, Scandia,Stacy and Lindstrom also will benefit as the transit station location is easily accessible from these communities as well.


Need to know more about buying or selling a Twin Cities home? Let me be your professional guide. If you are buying, selling or relocating to Minnesota and need help from a professional REALTOR®, give me, Teri Eckholm of Boardman Realty, a call or visit my website for a FREE Home Buyer Success Guide or FREE Home Value Report.http://terieckholm.com/buying-house-search.php I specialize in acreage and lakeshore properties in the north and east Twin Cities metro area including Ham Lake, Lino Lakes and all communities in the Forest Lake School District. Serving Anoka, Chisago, Ramsey and Washington Counties in Minnesota.

Copyright 2015 www.terieckholm.com

Get My Ham Lake Minnesota Home Value!




Are you planning to sell your home in Ham Lake, Minnesota soon? Do you need more information on where to start? 

When you need to sell a home in the Ham Lake area, I will help you get the process started quickly. My innovative marketing and top notch negotiating skills will get your property sold FAST and at the best possible price too.  A market analysis by a professional REALTOR® is your first step in the home selling process. It will give you an ACCURATE VALUE of your current home...not a quick computer generated one. 

Interested? Read testimonials from my sellers

The Ham Lake winter market is active! Home buyers are still searching for acreage homes but few good, affordable options have listed in the north and east Minneapolis/St. Paul metro since fall. 17 homes have sold in the city of Ham Lake in November but only 12 listed. AND 3 of these homes are already under contract! Currently there are 44 homes listed in Ham Lake (34 previously owned and 10 new construction). Only a handful of these properties are priced at a number affordable to the average home buyer. Listing your home in the next few months could maximize your sales price due to the low housing inventory in the area.

Selling acreage is one of my specialities. I have 15+ years experience with septic systems, compliance tests, well disclosures and other rural real estate issues.

For additional information about working with me, contact me to obtain a FREE Home Value Report. Or better yet call me, Teri Eckholm/Boardman Realty 651-336-7073 and arrange a no cost/obligation market analysis on your home today.

FYI-- I do answer my own phone so when you call, you will be talking directly to me!



Copyright 2015 www.terieckholm.com

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Does a Home Buyer need to pay a Retainer for REALTOR in Minnesota?


 
Most home buyers, even first time home buyers, realize there will be fees to pay over and above the cost of the house itself. There are fees to the lender to originate the loan, fees for homeowner’s insurance and closing costs. Most home buyers also know it is a good idea to work with a REALTOR® to help them find the perfect home. Having an agent to represent you when purchasing a home is extremely important. As a professional real estate agent working in Anoka County, I have knowledge about homes, neighborhoods, taxes, school districts and contract negotiation. All of these skills are invaluable when it comes to writing a purchase agreement. But how does a REALTOR® get paid?

Most agents are paid at the time of the closing by the SELLER of the home you purchase.  So in many instances, as a buyer you do not pay commission to your REALTOR®


However, in Minnesota our buyer’s representation contracts do allow agents to charge a retainer fee from the buyers they are working with. The amount of time spent with a buyer from first contact to closing can be several months, even years. As agents we put in quite a bit of time showing homes to our buyers. Since the bulk of our commission comes from the seller of the property purchased, we work long hours without payment upfront. It is becoming more common for agents to request a retainer fee of several hundred dollars to offset these costs in case a buyer decides to give up their home search. This fee may or may not be refunded at the time of closing if when the agent receives the commission from the seller.  


How do you know if your prospective REALTOR® will be charging a retainer? You have to ask. Make sure you agent takes the time to explain the contract to you prior to signing. If you don’t feel comfortable paying a retainer fee, interview other agents before putting your signature on the contract. Remember you will be obligated to work with this person for several months until your closing. Find someone you like working with and trust.  Buying a house is an important investment and one of the biggest decisions you might ever have to make.


I personally do not charge a retainer fee. I use the Minnesota contract for buyer’s representation that has a spot for a retainer fee and I write in ZERO. It is my way of showing to the buyer, we are in this together. I will put in the time knowing I will be paid by the seller when we find that perfect place to call home.


Need to know more about buying or selling a Twin Cities home? Let me be your professional guide. If you are buying, selling or relocating to Minnesota and need help from a professional REALTOR®, give me, Teri Eckholm of Boardman Realty, a call or visit my website for a FREE Home Buyer Success Guide or FREE Home Value Report.http://terieckholm.com/buying-house-search.php I specialize in acreage and lakeshore properties in the north and east Twin Cities metro area including Ham Lake, Lino Lakes and all communities in the Forest Lake School District. Serving Anoka, Chisago, Ramsey and Washington Counties in Minnesota.

Copyright 2015 www.terieckholm.com




Friday, November 13, 2015

Private Road on a “City” Street? How can that be?

 
We’ve all see the humorous signs for private parking or private roads. One of my favorite "better not park here"  signs is Dragon Parking Only! All Others Will Be Toast! 

But in the community of North Oaks, the private road/no trespassing signs are not a joke. This unique community is not specifically a "gated community" as one might expect in other areas of the country. However, every entrance to the city is posted as a private road.  North Oaks, originally a 5000 acre farm, was developed for upscale, mostly acreage properties, built around Pleasant Lake and the concept of persevering the natural beauty of the area. Though there are 600+ conservancy acres and 500 acres of residential open use land, the city owns no property. All parks, trails and recreational facilities are owned and maintained by the homeowners association. Each homeowner owns the road frontage to the middle of the street, effectively making all roads resident owned and private.

So what does this mean? If you have not been invited into North Oaks by a resident, you are quite simply trespassing. There is a sheriff that patrols the community on an exclusive basis. Interestingly, residents who are selling a home can only have “invitation only” open houses or private scheduled showings. Public invitation open houses are not allowed as residents must know specifically who is coming and going from their homes.


The residents of North Oaks take their privacy and private roads very seriously. With or without gates. 



Featured North Oaks Listing: 
5 BRAINARD WAY 4BR/4BA/4+Car Architecturally designed rambler on 2 Acres Take tour & download flyer 


Need to know more about buying or selling a Twin Cities home? Let me be your professional guide. If you are buying, selling or relocating to Minnesota and need help from a professional REALTOR®, give me, Teri Eckholm of Boardman Realty, a call or visit my website for a FREE Home Buyer Success Guide or FREE Home Value Report. I specialize in acreage and lakeshore properties in the north and east Twin Cities metro area including Ham Lake, Lino Lakes and all communities in the Forest Lake School District. Serving Anoka, Chisago, Ramsey and Washington Counties in Minnesota.

Copyright 2015 www.terieckholm.com

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Wordless Wednesday (Almost) Mountains not Mole Hills.


Living in Minnesota there are hills and valleys but no mountains. (Ski hills like "Spirit Mountain" do not count at all). In Anoka County we do have a lot of mole hills, though. 

As we flew into Seattle last fall, the view was impressive. From above the clouds, the world is in a word, breathtaking. It makes all the "big" issues in the my job of real estate seem quite small. 

Of course when there is an issue in a transaction, it is my job to see the big picture, keep everything in perspective and make any hiccups in a deal as minute as possible for my clients.  Keeping mole hills from becoming mountains could be a new motto for this REALTOR®.

Need to know more about buying or selling a Twin Cities home? Let me be your professional guide. If you are buying, selling or relocating to Minnesota and need help from a professional REALTOR®, give me, Teri Eckholm of Boardman Realty, a call or visit my website for a FREE Home Buyer Success Guide or FREE Home Value Report. I specialize in acreage and lakeshore properties in the north and east Twin Cities metro area including Ham Lake, Lino Lakes and all communities in the Forest Lake School District. Serving Anoka, Chisago, Ramsey and Washington Counties in Minnesota.

Copyright 2015 www.terieckholm.com