Archive for October, 2014

Zestimate Guesstimate

Wednesday, October 22nd, 2014

MissedAccording to Zillow’s own research, Zillow’s median margin of error in Iowa is 5.8%. This doesn’t sound like much until one thinks through this statistic. The median, by definition, is that one half of the homes will sell outside the 5.8% range. What does this look like in practice? The average sales price of a home in Ames is approximately $200,000. Lets assume for example that Zilow’s Zestimate for a residential home is $200,000. According to Zillow, there is a 50% chance that the sales price will be between $188,400 and $211,600. The total range is $23,200. Conversely, Zillow acknowledges that their Zestimate has a 50% chance of being wrong by more than 5.8%. It is equally likely that the actual sales price might be outside their stated range. Therefore the actual sales price could easily be $185,000 as it might be $215,000? Who knows? We know!! What confidence can this Zestimate give a home seller or a home buyer? By Zillow’s own admission, this is precisely why a Hunziker & Associates Realtor is required. We know the market.

Fall Home Checklist

Tuesday, October 14th, 2014

Beautiful, brisk fall is here which means winter is right around the corner. Autumn is the perfect time to get your home and yard prepped for the colder months ahead.  Take advantage of the mild weather this season and use these maintenance tasks to ensure you and your household are ready before the snow falls.

Inspect and clean out gutters and downspouts– Clogged rain gutters can cause ice dams, which can lead to expensive repairs.  After the leaves have fallen, clean your gutters to remove leaves, twigs, and gunk. Make sure gutters aren’t sagging and trapping water; tighten gutter hangers and downspout brackets. Replace any worn or damaged gutters and downspouts.

Seal any gaps or cracks around doors or windows with caulking or weather stripping– Sealing up cracks between trim and siding, around window and door frames, and where pipes and wires enter your house. Preventing moisture from getting inside your walls is one of the least expensive and most important of your fall maintenance jobs. You’ll also seal air leaks that waste energy.

Drain all outdoor faucets and irrigation systems– Remove garden hoses from outdoor faucets. Leaving hoses attached can cause water to back up in the faucets and in the plumbing pipes just inside your exterior walls. If freezing temps hit, that water could freeze, expand, and crack the faucet or pipes. Make this an early fall priority so a sudden cold snap doesn’t sneak up and cause damage. Time to drain your irrigation system. Even buried irrigation lines can freeze, leading to busted pipes and broken sprinkler heads.

Have a professional inspect your furnace– Schedule an appointment with a heating and cooling pro to get your heating system checked and tuned up for the coming heating season. An annual maintenance contract ensures you’re at the top of the list for checks and shaves 20% off the cost of a single visit.

Check fireplaces for soot build-up and/or hire a chimney sweep to do an inspection– To make sure your fireplace is safe, grab a flashlight and look up inside your fireplace flue to make sure the damper opens and closes properly. Open the damper and look up into the flue to make sure it’s free of birds’ nests, branches and leaves, or other obstructions. You should see daylight at the top of the chimney. Have your fireplace flue cleaned by a professional to remove creosote buildup.

Click here for a full checklist you can printFall Maintenance Checklist.
For more fall maintenance suggestions follow these links for Houselogic and HomeAdvisor.

Pie-in-the-face for the United Way

Friday, October 3rd, 2014

Our relocation director, Cindy Albin, takes a Pie-in-the-face as a part of Hunziker’s efforts to raise money for the United Way.

Video of Cindy getting a Pie-in-the-face

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