Archive for the ‘Helpful info: Bucks’ Category

You, the seller, should list your home now and not wait until spring…

“We are going to wait until spring”.

“No one is looking at homes now, it’s a holiday season”.

I hear these 2 sentences very often during the last quarter of the year. It’s cold, it gets dark early and now that we are in the middle of November, the holiday season is almost here.

Let me give you at least 10 reason why you, sellers, should put your home on the market NOW and not wait until spring.

1. January is traditionally the month when employees begin their new jobs. Since transferees cannot wait to buy, you need to be on the market during the Holidays to capture those serious buyers. Here is a great example: I currently have clients that are moving from Indiana to New Jersey’s Princeton area. The husband is starting a new job on December 17th and they are looking to buy a home in Mercer County, NJ. The family will be here on December 26th. Do you think they are serious buyers? Absolutely.

2. Even though your home will be on the market, you still have the option to carefully monitor and restrict showings during the days around the holidays. No problem.

3. Some people must buy before the end of the year for tax reasons! There are great deductions that come with home ownership and many items on the closing sheet statement that you get at closing are tax deductible.


4. Buyers have more time to look for a home during the holidays than they do during a working week. Many people have at least a few days off during the holiday season. Many take advantage of those days off not just shopping for presents, but shopping for a new home.

5. Houses show better when decorated for the Holidays. More festive, bright and sparkling.

6. Since the supply of homes dramatically increases in the spring, there will be less demand for your home and less money when negotiating the best price and terms for your home.

7. Serious buyers have fewer houses to choose from during the holidays and this means less competition for you and a better price for your home.

8. Finally, people who look for homes during the holidays are MORE serious buyers! They are out in the dark, cold weather looking at homes. They are serious about finding a home! I have buyers now who just found the home they love in Hopewell, Mercer County, NJ, they want to be moved in just in time for Christmas. We negotiated a closing date of December 21st. Do you think they are serious? Absolutely.
So, don’t do what everyone else will be doing in the spring. Differentiate yourself from your competition and reap the rewards! 

To get your home on the market and to get more information, log on to www.HomesSoldByOlga.com or call/email us!


About the author: Olga St. Pierre runs a top producing Real Estate Team, that works in NE Philadelphia, Bucks Co PA, and Burlington and Mercer Counties, NJ. She and her family live, play and work in Bucks County.



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Did you know that Bucks County has more wineries than any other county in Pennsylvania?

I learned this interesting fact about 10 years ago when I was deciding on what favors to share with my guests at my wedding. My husband and I decided to introduce our guests to our local wine from Buckingham Valley Vineyard. The vineyard bottled their white and blush wine, with a custom label for us, with our names and our wedding date.

The wine was smooth, silky and delicious and our guests loved it. In fact we still have a few bottles in our cabinet, for memories. Our good friends, who got married 2 years ago in November, after having the wine at our wedding, also had the wine from Buckingham Valley Vineyard at their wedding. Delicious!

What we wanted to show others, is that besides California, there are wineries tucked in many surprising places, including right around the corner from us.

If you are looking for something interesting to do, or for a great adventure, or a gift for someone, consider doing a Bucks County Wine Trail. How cool does this sound? There are 9 wineries included on this tour, all spread throughout the whole county.

It’s not too late for this year either:
1. November 17-18: taste the first new wines of this season.
2. December 8-9: Holiday celebration, tour the wineries decorated for the holiday, enjoy wine tastings, live music, artisan cheeses and special prices on wine gift packs and baskets.

The spring tours go on sale in March and quickly sell out. For more information check www.buckscountytrail.com.

About the author: Olga St. Pierre runs a top producing Real Estate Team, that works in NE Philadelphia, Bucks Co PA, and Burlington and Mercer Counties, NJ. She and her family live, play and work in Bucks County.

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I bet you did not know this one.

When you buy a used car you request a copy of the Carfax report to see the detailed history of the car:     from title problems to ownership history to accidents and service history. This report gives you a piece of mind that the car you are buying has been in good hands.

A purchase of a home is a lot more significant, It is one of the biggest purchases we make. CLUE stands for Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange, is a database used by insurance companies to exchange information about the history of your home including claims, injuries, losses and other pertinent information. Important information, right?

The CLUE report remains with the house itself, rather than the owner of the home, just like with cars and Carfax reports.

In Pennsylvania, the Agreement of Sale includes a contingency of Property Insurance, where the buyer can determine insurability of the property by making an application for property and casualty insurance. In New Jersey, I include this contingency when preparing the contract for buyers before going through the Attorney Review.

During the original inquiry is when the insurance company can pull a CLUE report for the property to see if there are any issues. I always suggest the buyers that I work with to make the property insurance contingency. They want to make sure there were no major issues in the past that seller may not have reported about, and, if the property is not insurable, the buyers can not obtain the mortgage to purchase the home.

When buyers purchase the home, they can not themselves obtain a copy of the CLUE report for the property they are thinking about buying, however, this report can be reviewed by the insurance company or buyers can request sellers to obtain a copy for review.

You the homeowner, can, however, obtain a copy on your own home. Under the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act you can request a copy of your C.L.U.E. report from LexisNexis® toll free at 1-866-312-8076 or by visiting https://personalreports.lexisnexis.com.

I believe in checking out this report, just as you would request your credit report every year for free, to make sure there aren’t any issues on the report that should not be there.

We always learn something new, every day, don’t we?

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Olga St Pierre Real Estate Team
, 267-242-2712, homeswitholga.kw.com, search all homes in Bucks County:

With the great weather this weekend, take the time and visit some of the Great Parks in Bucks County:

Bowman’s Hill Wildflower Preserve (BHWP)

Bowman’s Hill Wildflower Preserve (BHWP) showcases an extraordinary diversity of plants native to Pennsylvania and the Delaware Valley region. The Preserve focuses exclusively on native plants, in distinction from botanical gardens that may include natives in their collection.

Churchville Park & Nature Center

The mission of the Churchville Nature Center is to instill an awareness and appreciation of the natural world in all people through education, and to encourage responsible environmental stewardship with a commitment to the preservation of resources and wildlife habitat.

Core Creek Park

Comprised of 1200 acres and includes horseback riding, walkways and bikeways, tennis, hiking and boat rentals.

Kids’ Castle and Central Park

This impressive 8-story structure was the result of a volunteer community effort to build a wonderland of swings, slides, a rocket ship, climbing and hiding places, and a great place for kids to spend a summer afternoon. It is located within Central Park at 425 Wells Road in Doylestown Township, just outside of town. It is open 7 days a week, sunrise to sunset, and admission is free. The park is open year-round though the castle closes after the first freeze. Central Park is a 108-acre facility that includes tennis courts, volleyball, soccer fields, and 1.5 miles of biking and hiking trails. It is perfect for picnicking, with many tables and several covered pavilions.

Tyler State Park

Consists of 1,711 acres in Bucks County. Park roads, trails, and facilities are carefully nestled within the original farm and woodland setting. Neshaminy Creek meanders through the park, dividing the land into several interesting sections.

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Save the date!!!

Bucks  First Federal Credit Union is sponsoring a FREE community shredder day, on Saturday, April 24, 9-11am.

Bring up to 3 boxes of paperwork to Bucks County Technical High School at 610 Wistar Rd, Fairless Hills, PA 19030.

For more information, please visit www.savebucks.org.

Happy Safe Shredding!!!

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school students

Yep, it’s that time of the year. Summer is about to wrap up, great sales are still going on on school supplies and new clothes are being purchased for the new school year. Yep, it’s time to go back to school! Just in time for the new school year, here are the useful statistics for Bucks County School Districts:

2008 Average SAT scores:

District Reading Math Writing

Bensalem:                         457               476            462

Bristol                                440                451            432

Bristol Twsp                    449                 455           424

Bucks Co. Tech HS        460                 470          432

Centennial                       495                  511           480

Council Rock                  539                  563           533

Morrisville                      460                 478           463

Neshaminy                     496                  512            482

Pennsbury                      510                  529            494

Student-to-Teacher Ratio:

District Elementary Secondary

Bensalem                               15.5:1                        14.8:1

Bristol                                        20:1                          15:1

Bristol Twsp                             14:1                          11:1

Bucks Co. Tech                         n/a                         20:1

Centennial                                 19:1                         24:1

Council Rock:                          25:1                         20:1

MBIT                                            n/a                        16.5:1

Morrisville                                21:1                         22:1

Neshaminy                               25:1                         22:1

Pennsbury                                21:1                         26:1

For each district school calendar, contact information, enrollment procedures you can turn to www.homeswitholga.com.

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Happy Monday!

I am ok that it’s Monday, as I love my work in real estate. I have a busy week ahead and it’s exciting! Here is something that you can use. Whether you are cleaning and organizing your stuff to get ready to sell your home or just organizing and cleaning to make more room, this will definitely help.

The American Cancer Research Center and Foundation are always looking for clothing and household items of all types. You need to call 800-805-2152 or log on to www.acrcf.org to find out the next pickup date. They pick up from my area once a month and it is very convenient. You put your items in boxes out on your porch by 8am on the pickup date and… you are done! The research center will come by your house and pick up everything!

guy with boxes

They will leave a receipt for your tax deduction donation so you can include it on your 2009 taxes. I donated quite a few boxes after my garage sale in June and it was very easy and convenient, and it felt good that I was helping.

So, if you don’t have anything right now, this suggestion may be helpful to you in the future when the house feels too stuffy.

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