Posts Tagged ‘Murney Associates’

New Murney Agent Making A Difference

Monday, July 7th, 2014

Evangel University stresses the importance of service, and it’s really not a hard sell with students.

Case in point: Senior recreation and sport management major Amanda Landolt and graduate Mitchell Jenkins.

Landolt plays basketball for Evangel and also works for the Springfield-Greene County Park Board during her summer breaks. Jenkins is a graduate of Evangel University and is now a Realtor with Murney Associates, Realtors. Through the park board, they were introduced to The Miracle League, an organization that provides children with disabilities an opportunity to play baseball.2014-06.30 Amanda & Mitch

Using the buddy system, The Miracle League pairs participants with volunteers who help them bat and run the bases. The field is a cushioned, synthetic turf, and players using wheelchairs and walkers can glide unrestricted without fear of injury.

“It’s just awesome,” Landolt said. “I get emotional when I see these kids and all they can do. People look at them and say, ‘Oh, they’re disabled. They can’t do this or that.’ They certainly can do things! They make it work!”

Their enthusiasm and concern for others is contagious, so the entire Evangel women’s basketball team volunteered with The Miracle League last fall.

 

It was a weekly commitment.

“They were automatically on board,” Landolt said of her coaches and teammates. “The girls came in the first night, and it was an awesome experience. It was neat to work with a special population of kids and enjoy serving them and watching them grow as individuals. Even though our weeks were long with academics and athletics, we had enough for those kids. It became something that we all looked forward to.”

Landolt said working with the league is different each week. “It’s never boring, constantly changing. You just gotta go with it,” she said. “These kids are such an inspiration to all of us and teach each one of us to pursue our dreams and just keep moving forward in life,” Jenkins adds.

The 2010 Kickapoo High graduate plans to study special education at the master’s level, so “just go with it” may become a life theme for Landolt. To anyone considering volunteering or working with people with disabilities, she says, “If you have it in your heart, find a way to do it.”

 

Mitch Jenkins ballpark20140428_195829


Local HGTV “House Hunter” Myths, Part 1

Wednesday, January 22nd, 2014

In today’s age of technology and the sense of needing to be a “now” generation, the public as a whole looks at buying and selling a home far different now than 10 years ago. First and foremost the internet plays the largest role in finding a home these days. Murney Associates Realtors syndicates its listings to over 65 different websites alone and most of our agents pay large online fees to syndicate their listings to even more. The easiest way by far to search realistically is to search www.murney.com.

 

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Secondly, television shows such as HGTV‘s “House Hunters,” “My First Place,” or “Property Virgins” show the home buying search as shows like “Extreme Open House,” and “Front Door” help the Sellers process. Here is the question at hand: Does watching shows like the ones mentioned above give Buyers and Sellers here in the Midwest a realistic view of “OUR” market?

 

 

About Us: With homes in Springfield Mo, Ozark Mo, Nixa Mo and surrounding southwest Missouri areas, Murney Associates produces more real estate sales in Springfield and Southwest Missouri than any other real estate firm. Murney Associates is the largest independent real estate company in Springfield Missouri and is ranked in the Top 100 in the nation by Real Estate Magazine. We are locally owned yet nationally recognized for our award-winning real estate performance. We can facilitate a stress-free move for you and your family to any of the homes in Springfield and its surrounding areas. Murney wants to exceed your expectations, because our clients always come first!



20 Simple Winterization Tips For Your Home

Friday, December 6th, 2013

The weather keeps playing tricks on us so far this fall/winter here in The Ozarks. One day it is 28 degrees and by the end of the week we end up around 68 degrees. With the temperatures and precipatation changing daily, sometimes hourly, we need to make sure our homes are prepared for such drastic changes. Zach Miller, a “Green Living” expert agent here at Murney Associates has provided us with some great and simple tips on winterizing your home.

20 Simple Winterization Tips For Your Home

1) Block drafts at bottom of doors with door sweeps
2) Change your dirty air filter in your furnace/hvac system
3) Provide proper servicing of heating system by qualified hvac technician
4) Seal leaky ductwork, possibly insulate, for your heating/cooling system
5) Use ceiling fans in reverse to circulate rising hot air
6) Consider using safe additional heat sources for rooms and spaces
7) Try turning your thermostat down a couple of degrees
8) Install and correctly use a programmable thermostat
9) Provide proper caulking/weather stripping of windows & doors
10) Stop air leaks around drafty windows with a clear plastic product
11) Add proper insulation to attic, walls, & ceilings where applicable
12) Make sure recessed lighting, ceilings fans, & fixtures are sealed from attic
13) Install and use an energy monitor to analyze your energy consumption
14) Keep fireplace damper closed & sealed when not in use
15) Clean out your rain gutters to help prevent ice & water damage
16) Insulate your water supply pipes under your home & exposed areas
17) Use proper spray foam to fill holes, gaps, & cracks where applicable
18) Drain exterior faucets, remove hose bibs, install frost free spigots
19) Repair roof leaks: shingles, around vents, piping, & fireplace
20) Wear warmer clothes, use blankets, & cover your feet while at home

Some helpful websites:
http://www.energysavers.gov
http://www.energystar.gov/

http://www.dsireusa.org/

www.resnet.us/

About Us: With homes in Springfield MO, Ozark MO, Nixa MO and surrounding southwest Missouri areas, Murney Associates produces more real estate sales in Springfield and Southwest Missouri than any other real estate firm. Murney Associates is the largest independent real estate company in Springfield Missouri and is ranked in the Top 100 in the nation by Real Estate Magazine. We are locally owned yet nationally recognized for our award-winning real estate performance.

We have the largest number of realtors in Springfield MO than any other real estate firm. And with commercial real estate in Springfield MO and surrounding areas, Murney Commercial Realtors can also help you find your next business location.

We can facilitate a stress-free move for you and your family to any of the homes in Springfield and its surroundings areas. Murney wants to exceed your expectations, because our clients always come first!


Murney Associates, Realtors Receives “International Property Awards!”

Tuesday, November 19th, 2013

And the Award Goes to…Murney Associates Realtors!

We’re thrilled to announce that Enterprise Network member, Murney Associates Realtors, won two awards for the 2013 Americas Property Awards! Murney competed against a number of real estate agencies and websites in the United States, and took home awards in the Best Real Estate Website and Best Real Estate Agency categories.

The Americas Property Awards are part of the International Property Awards that are open to residential and commercial property professionals from around the globe. They celebrate the highest levels of achievement by companies operating in all sectors of the property and real estate industry. Participants from the United States, Canada, Central and South America, and the Caribbean enter as representations of their country and have the chance to win at a state, national, regional or international level.

Murney received high scores in the Americas competition to win best in their region and are invited to attend a gala in London on December 6, 2013. At this event, winning companies will learn which honors they secured and if they will continue on to the International Property Awards competition. The Americas nominees will also learn if they obtained a “World’s Best” award the same day.

Stuart Shield, president of the International Property Awards, said, “Our Americas regional competition covers a very large geographical area and a variety of diverse cultures but all the winners have one thing in common: high quality and innovation presented in their winning projects and excellent service provided to clients.”

The-International-Property-Awards


Fall Home Tips Before Winter Sets In

Thursday, November 7th, 2013

Falling leaves and dwindling daylight signal a final opportunity to do some outdoor organizing before winter settles in.

fall

Check your shingles
Try to do this on a warm day if you have asphalt shingles on your roof, so the shingles will be flexible. Use roofing cement to seal cracked and torn shingles and to reattach curled shingles. Visit with your local roofing companies like Barney’s Roofing or DJ Roofing Supply for more tips and ideas.

Repair siding
Do a fall siding inspection and remedy any problems you find. Look for damaged paint, warped or split wood, cracks or holes in stucco, and missing or slipped siding panels. Your repair tool kit will depend on what kind of siding you have: For example, wood siding may require wood putty, waterproof glue, nails and screws; stucco may require wire mesh, stucco patching compound, a trowel and a chisel.

Reinforce windows
Replace your screens with storm windows. If you have older single-pane windows and no storm coverings, apply heat-shrink plastic to the inner or outer window frame to create an insulating air space and save heating expense.

Fire fluency
Make sure your damper is in good working order by opening and shutting it prior to lighting the first fire of the season. If you didn’t clean your chimney at the end of the heating season, do it . Mr. Chimney in Springfield, MO is a great resource for your chimney needs.

Detect deadly gas
If you heat your home with wood heat or a gas heater, a carbon-monoxide detector is a must.

Check batteries in smoke detectors
Get into the habit of checking smoke-detector batteries when you “fall back” and “spring ahead.” Also make sure household fire extinguishers are fully pressurized and in good working order.

Close seasonal air conditioners
If you live in a place where air conditioners are used seasonally instead of year-round, this is a good month to close them down. Switch off power, make sure the condensate drain is clear, and clean condenser coils and filters (a vacuum will do).

Store outdoor furniture
Scrub and store outdoor furniture; even furniture designed to stay out year-round will last longer if protected from extreme cold and wet. Store or cover your barbecue unless you cook with it all year. Empty and store large planters — clay or terra-cotta units will crack if left out to freeze and thaw. Clean and store your gardening tools, but don’t put them completely out of reach — shovels are useful year-round.

Winterize external plumbing systems
This is the most important job of fall if you live in an area that freezes in the winter. The simple fact that water expands upon freezing has caused countless homeowners innumerable woes. Ignore this job and flooding, water damage and thousands of dollars worth of plumbing bills will be your constant winter companions.


Buyer’s Agents Help and Don’t Cost You!

Sunday, September 22nd, 2013

Ever notice that some folks have a skewed view of life as a real estate agent? Considering how agents are depicted on some reality TV shows, that’s understandable. Agents with big incomes and lavish lifestyles undoubtedly bring in higher television ratings than your run-of-the-mill agents.

And while those shows are entertaining, they can create a lot of misconceptions about real estate agents. We’re ready to clear those up right now.

Misconception #1: This job is easy.

 

Consider a few of an agent’s daily challenges: marketing “not-so-marketable” properties, managing a huge client database and supervising heated negotiations. Add in the stress of a commission-based income and a down market, and you can understand why few agents say their jobs are “easy.”

“People have this image that being an agent is easy, that all you have to do is show homes,” says Murney Associates agent Michelle Ward in an in house interview. “This is an undervalued job for all the work that goes into it! And real estate is a really fickle industry.”

 

Misconception #2: I get paid a lot.

 

Real estate agents drive around in flashy cars, live in mansions, and are up to their eyeballs in million-dollar deals, right?

Wealthy agents are definitely out there, but 7-figure incomes are not the norm among agents. The average gross income for members of the National Association of Realtors who worked 40-59 hours a week was $49,000 in 2011. That’s a solid income, but not enough to support a warehouse full of Ferraris or a palatial vacation home.

Most agents quickly learn that a comfortable income is certainly within reach, but that real estate isn’t the quick and easy road to riches.

 

 

 Misconception #3: My schedule is super-flexible.

 

Most real estate agents aren’t held to the “Monday-Friday, 8-5” routine. Agents have some flexibility to work at the times and locations they see fit.

But that doesn’t mean agents can abandon the office for days on end or vacation at a moment’s notice. Clients have demands and busy lives as well, and many expect agents to cater to their schedules. Buyers may want an immediate showing of a new listing. Sellers expect listing agents to constantly monitor leads.

At the end of the day, agents can choose how flexible and responsive they want to be. But as success follows hard work, so too must agents follow their client’s needs.

 

Misconception #4: I don’t need any training to do this job.

 

We’ll counteract that myth with a simple statement: Agents are a well-educated crowd.

Every licensed agent must meet their state’s training guidelines before starting a practice. Plus,more than 48 percent of NAR members have some type of college degree, and 32 percent hold specialized training certifications. In addition, a third of NAR members have at least one professional designation, such as GRI (Graduate Realtor Institute) or ABR (Accredited Buyer Representative).

It’s true that most universities don’t offer a bachelor’s degree in real estate. Don’t let that tidbit obscure the fact that agents undergo rigid licensure training and continuing education to succeed.

The reality is…

Just like any other profession, real estate has its highs and lows. It’s not a get-rich-quick scheme, or an easy career for someone without the proper training.

But if you love personal interaction, marketing, and being self-employed, working as a real estate agent can be incredibly rewarding. Connecting buyers with their dream homes or helping sellers move on with their lives is a wonderful calling. And you get to look at houses all day long. (Better consider a different career path if that doesn’t excite you!)

 

About Us: With homes in Springfield MO, Ozark MO, Nixa MO and surrounding southwest Missouri areas, Murney Associates produces more real estate sales in Springfield and Southwest Missouri than any other real estate firm. Murney Associates is the largest independent real estate company in Springfield Missouri and is ranked in the Top 100 in the nation by Real Estate Magazine. We are locally owned yet nationally recognized for our award-winning real estate performance.

We have the largest number of realtors in Springfield MO than any other real estate firm. And with commercial real estate in Springfield MO and surrounding areas, Murney Commercial Realtors can also help you find your next business location.

We can facilitate a stress-free move for you and your family to any of the homes in Springfield and its surroundings areas. Murney wants to exceed your expectations, because our clients always come first!

 


To Buy or Refinance?

Thursday, September 5th, 2013

With mortgage rates on a slow rise and prices rolled back to where they were a decade ago, this fall would seem an ideal time for first-time buyers to finally take the plunge or to refinance your home.

 

interest rates

An inventory shortage has whipped up a feeding frenzy in some housing markets, with bidding wars and price increases. Is this pressure justified? Would most buyers be better served by waiting? NO! If you can’t afford to buy now in this great market then refinance. Your appraisal value may rise due to the home values increases as well.

In this installment of Buying Advice, we’ll look at what’s driving the shortage and how that picture is likely to change in the months ahead.  Where does “Act now!” make sense, and where should buyers sit it out awhile?

Housing market snapshot

Just how high have mortgage rates risen? In the week that ended June 26, the average rate on a 30-year fixed-rate loan was 4.00% which is up from 3.49% from last year, according to Freddie Mac survey data.

“Despite the frictions related to obtaining mortgages, buyer interest remains solid,” Says the Greater Springfield Board of Realtors. “But inventory continues to shrink, and that is limiting buying opportunities. That in turn is pushing up prices in many markets,” as is a reduced supply of lower-priced distressed listings. Prices increased the most in the West  13.3% year over year – due to short supply of affordable and mid-tier homes. Here in Springfield and in our surrounding communities our inventory is still looking good but as we get closer to school starting we may see a drop in listings.

 

 

About Us: With homes in Springfield MO, Ozark MO, Nixa MO and surrounding southwest Missouri areas, Murney Associates produces more real estate sales in Springfield and Southwest Missouri than any other real estate firm. Murney Associates is the largest independent real estate company in Springfield Missouri and is ranked in the Top 100 in the nation by Real Estate Magazine. We are locally owned yet nationally recognized for our award-winning real estate performance.

We have the largest number of realtors in Springfield MO than any other real estate firm. And with commercial real estate in Springfield MO and surrounding areas, Murney Commercial Realtors can also help you find your next business location.

We can facilitate a stress-free move for you and your family to any of the homes in Springfield and its surroundings areas. Murney wants to exceed your expectations, because our clients always come first!


Listing Losers: 8 Reasons Your Home Isn’t Selling

Thursday, July 25th, 2013

546 E. Loren Street Springfield MO 65804

Why do some homes linger on the market for months — or years — while others are snapped up in a matter of days? While much of it has to do with price and local inventory, a whole host of factors can conspire to make a home sit and stagnate on the multiple listing service without showings or offers.

To find out what makes some listings such laggards, Murney Associates,Realtors  polled agents in our offices  and combed through properties looking for real-estate wallflowers and the issues plaguing them.

Think of these examples as cautionary tales for sellers, with a bit of advice sprinkled in from agents who have seen it all before.

 

“The longer a house sits on the market, the more it gets stigmatized,” says Debbie Morrow.  People ask, “What’s wrong with that house?” and “Why hasn’t it sold?” If you don’t want your home to be the listing that won’t budge, read on for eight listing no-nos and for tips to help you sell lickety-split.

1. A ‘what the heck are they thinking?’ price tag

Price is usually the overriding factor in any home that doesn’t sell. Whatever its problem, it can usually be rectified by adjusting the price, says Mike Green an agent with the Murney Associates East office.

“It’s always price for condition or price for location,” Green says. “That’s one of the main reasons [homes] sit. Forget what you paid for the home, the upgrades you have done and the location. FOCUS more on what is selling around you and come to a good sales price.

2. Tacky or dated decor

Everybody’s taste is different, so less is more when it comes to decor at sale time. Loud patterns and bold colors can be big distractions. When in doubt a hint of Khaki color is good.tacky

 

 

 

 

3. Poor condition

If a home looks as if it’s going to cost half as much to repair or renovate as it does to purchase, it’s going to take a long time to move, agents say. Indeed, today’s buyer is a lot more reluctant to take on a “project,” says foreclosure expert Jim Cline, especially if there are houses around it that don’t need as much work. Ditto for homes that have strong pet or mold smells. So fix it, or prepare to lop a large amount off the price, agents say.

4. Bad location

A wonderful house can’t always overcome a bad location. Homes that are close to a power plant, waste-treatment facility or busy freeway will often sit, unless the seller is willing to take a major hit on the price, Morrow says.

5. Bad Design

 

bad design

With many homes, it’s an inefficient or strange floor plan or design that acts as a barrier to a sale.

In some cases, it’s a matter of functional obsolescence, when a dated design no longer serves today’s population, such as older homes where you have to walk through one bedroom to get to a second bedroom. Also selling a custom built home can be a hard sell as well because the design may not suit all interested parties.

6. A fancy hacienda among humble homes

While it certainly feels nice to have the largest, most elegant home in the neighborhood, it won’t do you any favors when it comes time to sell, agents say. People are paying not only for the house but also for everything around it. If the homes around yours don’t mirror yours in size or polish, you might have a hard time getting a luxury price.

7. Investor-owned condo projects

Some condos can be a hard sell for banks, including those in largely investor-owned communities.

 

8. Frightening photos

hoarder

If a seller can’t be bothered to clean up before the sale, the agent probably shouldn’t include many interior photos. Clutter and messy home will detour buyers quickly so rent a storage unit to store items you are unable to part with and get the clutter out.


4 Crucial Items You Need When Buying A Home

Monday, April 22nd, 2013

 

 

Four steps to getting your dream home.

Buying a new home is an investment in your future. Financial experts agree investing in real estate is still one of the wisest portfolio-building strategies. So put your trust in the proven professionals at Murney Associates. We will assist you in making the best financial and personal investment. We are here to help you find your way home.

  1. 1.  Mortgage Pre-approval

It is imperative in today’s real estate market to show strength in purchasing power. Sellers are more inclined to negotiate with pre-approved buyers. Your Murney agent can assist you with selection of a knowledgeable and reputable lender. In your meeting, ask questions like: What will this cost? What type of loan should I get? Can I afford this payment with my current income? Your lender will explain financial considerations such as down payments, closing costs, escrow accounts as well as monthly payments. Ask for a pre-approval letter. When you’re ready to make an offer, your letter will make your contract more attractive.

  1. 2.  Professional Representation

Entering the ever-changing real estate market can be both frightening and confusing. Now more than ever, you need the services of the experts in the field. Enlist a Buyer’s Agent to protect your interests instead of those of the seller. At Murney, we specialize in providing buyers good faith, loyalty and fidelity when purchasing a home. We can show you the ropes and make the purchasing process both stress-free and hassle-free. Remember when hiring a Buyer’s Agent that you are not charged a FEE!

  1. 3.  Contract, Appraisals, Inspections & Policies

It’s time to write a “clean” contract in order to gain acceptance from the seller. You can be confident your offer will be accepted, because Murney agents know contracts. Murney will walk you through the appraisals, inspections and escrow. Your lender has a vested interest in the property as well, so they will require a Wood Destroying Pest Inspection and an appraisal to determine the value of the home you’ve selected. We’ll make sure all details are completed in a timely manner, and we’ll keep you informed every step of the way.

  1. 4.  Closing and Keys

When can we move in? On the scheduled day of closing, your Murney agent will meet you at the title company to assist in closing the transaction. This is the time when all final lending documents are signed and notarized. The balance of your down payment and closing costs are due and payable at the closing table. After you and the seller sign the deeds and lender documents, your Murney agent will hand you the keys to your new home.


HUGE Misconceptions of Trusting Zillow and Trulia

Wednesday, April 10th, 2013

In separate recent articles at Murney.com blog and the New York Times blog, Zillow and Trulia were discussed. In the article interviewing Zillow’s CEO, Spencer Raskoff, and the current desire of Zillow to work with agents was contrasted with the company’s stated objective when it opened. Then the goal was to give consumers an alternative to working with real estate agents.

Apparently that business model isn’t generating the desired profit level, and there’s now a greater focus on getting more agents to work with Zillow and pay for advertising there. Keep in mind that Zillow and Trulia are ADVERTISING FIRMS not REAL ESTATE AGENCIES.  Zillow charges agents for exposure next to listings in their market areas. One expectation is that more agents with closer cooperation will improve the timeliness and accuracy of Zillow’s data; unfortunately Zillow’s data is very inefficient and inaccurate.

 

On that data accuracy note, we get to Zillow and Trulia ourselves and looked at the accuracy compared to our local MLS and man oh man were there many many mistakes in the reporting. The results showed that:

100% of current listings were present on Redfin and our Murney .com site.

Trulia only had had 81 percent of listings and many did not have the correct pictures or information.

Zillow had 79 percent of listings and their appraisal value was WAY off base for our market.

36% of Zillow listings were shown active but were no longer for sale.

The same was true for 37% of Trulia listings.

Sure, there’s bias on the part of Redfin in underwriting this study, but the results clearly show that the local MLS data, available to Redfin and Murney Associates but not to Zillow and Trulia, is far superior in accuracy and timeliness. So, why aren’t we as real estate professionals educating the consumer to that fact, strongly marketing it, and bringing those searchers to Murney.com instead of the big websites that are so wrong?

And, we’re not going to leave Realtor.com out of this discussion. An article on a TV station site in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area discusses Edina Realty’s decision to remove thousands of listings from Realtor.com due to stated inaccuracies and other problems. Other local and regional MLSs have done the same. Realtor.com, using the Realtor logo but no longer owned by NAR, charges agents and brokerages for advertising next to listings also. Edina stated that one problem was agent ads showing up next to listings not in their area or not for sale.

Sure as agents we want to talk to anyone who we get off of these sites but when the data is incorrect or the home is already Sold, Under Contract, Withdrawn or Expired it makes us as agents look unknowledgeable in our market. The general public needs to understand that www.murney.com pulls a feed on all properties twice a day and the Zillow and Trulia pull once a week. Trust your local Murney Agent to have the stats and comparable for you in selling and buying your home.