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***Advice To Improve Your Winter Curb Appeal!!!***

by Judy Gull

Riverfest Lights up Independence Day in La Crosse

by Judy Gull

The annual family fun fest that is the La Crosse Riverfest will take place during the week of the Fourth of July - from Wednesday, July 3 through Saturday, July 6. The promoters of this year’s spectacular four-day party will go out of their way to ensure it provides "something for everyone" in the community, and surrounding Mississippi River bluffs region, to enjoy.

La Crosse's beautiful Riverside Park (located on the 100 Block of State Street) has played host to Riverfest ever since its inception way back in 1983. In addition to the sparkling and explosive Fourth of July fireworks show at about 10 p.m., launched over the Mississippi River by the La Crosse Skyrockers and sponsored by the La Crosse Jaycees, Riverfest offers a plethora of entertainment, food experiences, arts and crafts, a children's parade, outdoor family movie, and more.

The fun officially begins when Riverside Park opens its Riverfest gates at 5 p.m. Wednesday, July 3. Highlighting the musical part of the event is the band Cheap Trick, scheduled to take the Kaplan University Main Stage at about 9 p.m. on opening night. Some of the other notable entertainers scheduled to perform at Riverfest include the El Caminos, a Hypnotist Show, the Southern Bluffs Wizards Jump Rope Team, and the Warriors Baton and Drum Corps.

Food and beverage vendors at the festival run the gamut, including, but not limited to, the following:

  • A&W Family Restaurant
  • Ciatti’s
  • Famous Dave’s
  • Fazoli’s
  • Seven Bridges
  • Culinary Visions
  • Fresh Squeezed Lemonade

You can begin your own personal access to Riverfest today, by purchasing an official Riverfest button. Not only are these buttons stylish and cool looking, but the financial contributions gathered from these little buttons will allow the sponsors of the event to donate more than $60,000 to numerous community organizations.

If you act fast, you can still purchase Riverfest buttons online. During the transaction, you will have the option of either picking up your buttons at the Riverfest Office near the north end of Riverside Park, or having them mailed to you at an additional cost for shipping and handling.

The buttons cost $5 each before Riverfest kicks off, and $7 at the gate. Buttons will not be available via the web once the party starts.

For the full schedule, Events Calendar, Entertainment Listing and any other information relevant to Riverfest 2013, visit RIVERFEST.

La Crosse Housing Market Strong in April

by Judy Gull

These are good times to be a home buyer in the great state of Wisconsin, although one could also say that these are good times to be a home seller as well, here in the lovely Mississippi River bluffs city of La Crosse.

The primary reasons for optimism come to us from the Wisconsin REALTORS® Association (WRA) and its 2013 April Home Sales Report. In summary, this statistical report shows that in spite of steadily growing home prices, housing in Wisconsin continues to be comparatively affordable.

The Wisconsin Housing Affordability Index - which measures the percentage of homes that a median income family can typically afford to purchase, given the availability of a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage with a 20 percent down payment - held strong at 255 in the month of April. In comparison, the National Association of REALTORS'® (NAR's) United States Housing Affordability Index for this year's first quarter was 197.

La Crosse's median home price jumped from $127,000 in April 2012 to $149,000, an increase of more than 17 percent. This elevated sticker price did not seem to do much to temper home buyers' enthusiasm because during that same time frame, home sales in La Crosse registered a 9.5 percent rise.

WRA's 2013 April Home Sales Report also shows that although the median home price rose to $138,000 (a solid 7.8 percent price increase) the total existing home sales for the entire state during the past year saw a 9.20 percent volume increase.

  Median Price Sales
  4/13 4/12 % Change 4/13 4/12 % Change
La Crosse $149,000 $127,000 17.30% 115 105 9.50%
Statewide $138,000 $128,000 7.80% 5863 5367 9.20%

According to Renny Diedrich, the chairman of the board of directors for WRA, the upward mobility trend for La Crosse, and the state of Wisconsin in general, represented in its report is no fluke. Rather, it marks the state's 22nd consecutive month in which home sales growth was positive. Diedrich says that not only is the current pace of home sales solid, it's also sustainable, which offers us yet another encouraging sign that the United States' housing market is making a healthy recovery from its all-too-recent nosedive.

The WSA's statistical report also shows that the overall housing sales for the entire nation, in the year's first fiscal quarter, enjoyed a 9.8 percent increase. Here in America's Dairyland, home sales numbers attained an almost 12 percent jump over the figures from the first quarter in 2012.

At Home with Judy....The Art of Winter Staging

by Judy Gull

When selling your home in the winter, the art of staging the inside becomes more important. Here are five simple tips to make your home shine even when the outside landscaping has faded:

  • Keep your house warm. In the winter people tend to turn the thermostat down to save money, however a warmer house is more welcoming to a potential buyer.
  • Clear your walkways and driveways of any snow or ice. Make it easy for buyers to get to your home.
  • Clean the windows and blinds. Letting in the natural light can brighten up a room and cheer up the home. This also brings attention to the windows and blinds so make sure they are clean even during winter. Dirty windows will make the home appear neglected.
  • Background music played softly can completely change the atmosphere, which will make the home feel cozy and keep potential buyers around longer. Select classical music to appeal to anyone.
  • Leave the light on. Before showing a home, make sure it's well lit. A well lit home is more inviting. If you're not home, consider setting up timers.

Following these simple tips can give your house that added boost in today's competitive market. For information on selling in our local market, please feel free to contact us and ask for a market analysis of our recent neighborhood activity. We are more than happy to answer any questions you might have!

See Gull For All Your Real Estate Needs!

It’s common knowledge that home improvement is more than just a weekend pastime. Taking the time to update a home can dramatically increase its livability and value. However, many homeowners are hesitant to make changes; putting off new cabinets because they’re not sure about the material, or wanting to make their home more energy efficient but not sure where to start. Luckily the Greater La Crosse Home and Builders Show brings together seminars and exhibitors that can answer all your home renovation questions. Whether you want to remodel the kitchen or revamp your yard, this event is a great opportunity to meet area contractors in person and get all your home renovation questions answered. Event officials have gathered over 90 different local and national exhibitors and a great line-up of seminars.

One of the great things about the Greater La Crosse Home and Builders Show is that you can learn about a do-it-yourself home project from a seminar and meet local vendors who can set you up with all the tools and materials you need to begin. You can sit in on McKay Nursery’s “Low Maintenance and Edible Landscaping” seminar and then visit their booth for pricing information specific to your landscaping needs. Or, talk to the guys from Beyer Custom Cabinets, who’ve been in business since 1987, about replacing or resurfacing your current cabinetry. Not only will you receive expert advice on anything from tile-setting to roofing, you come away from the event with hundreds of ideas for your home.

This three-day event will be held in the ballroom and South Hall of the La Crosse Center off of Hwy 53. Admission is free for children under 12 and $5 for adults. With warmer weather just around the corner, it’s the perfect time to start planning those home renovation projects and the experts at the Greater La Crosse Home and Builders Show are there to help.

Sand on the Riverfront - Riverfront Park, La Crosse

by Judy Gull

After the success of last year’s event, CenturyLink’s Sand on the Riverfront is back in 2011. The fundraiser, hosted by Riverfront, a nonprofit organization that provides services for the disabled, will take place at Riverside Park in La Crosse August 19-21.

Sand on the Riverfront’s theme for the year will be “Sports of all sorts,” which will include a new event for 2011: a 3-on-3 basketball tournament on the 20th. Riverfront handed out awards to event winners in 2010, but with the organization accepting donations, everyone truly goes home a winner.

Riverfront has been helping disabled adults find employment and homes since it was founded in 1977 in La Crosse, Wisconsin. Since then, the nonprofit has expanded to six offices throughout Wisconsin, employing almost 300 people to provide constant support for the state’s disabled community. The organization provides training, living support and recreational programs that allow over 1,700 disabled members of the community to live independently and find success in their lives.

Admission and registration to Sand on the Riverfront is free, but donations will be accepted and support of the Riverfront organization is encouraged. You can find out more about the Riverfront organization or CenturyLink’s Sand on the Riverfront for 2011 at www.riverfrontinc.org, or by calling 608-784-9450. Don’t miss the fun in beautiful downtown La Crosse!

La Crosse Housing Market Staying Strong

by Judy Gull

It’s no secret that housing and real estate markets all over the country have been hurting for the past couple of years, but there are areas that are improving and even showing evidence of growth. La Crosse, Wisconsin is one of those areas that continues to thrive, despite being in a recession. La Crosse has exciting housing trends, as well as plenty of spacious and comfortable living options to offer new home buyers.

In 2011, the La Crosse housing market has seen a sharp increase in median sales price. In January of this year, the median price was $125,500, but in just six months that number has risen to $143,000. With the median sale price climbing, potential home buyers should be encouraged to look for their dream home in the La Crosse area during the remainder of 2011.

Home sales in the area are down from a year ago, but considering that first-time home buyers in La Crosse were supplemented by the Federal Housing Tax Credit Program in 2010, the drop off is not a real setback for the market. In fact, home sales actually increased from May to June, showing that there may be more growth to come later in the year.

The declining unemployment rates in the area make La Crosse real estate a stronger market. According to the Wisconsin Realtors Association, the housing market should receive a healthy boost with more residents working. The state of Wisconsin’s unemployment rate is under the national average and with 25,000 jobs already added this year, things are definitely looking up for the state, the area of La Crosse and for Wisconsin real estate in general.

Displaying blog entries 1-7 of 7

Contact Information

Photo of Judy Gull Real Estate
Judy Gull
RE/MAX First Choice
757 Sand Lake Road
Onalaska WI 54650
Direct: 608-781-7714
Fax: 608-783-4263