Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Barry County Sales (July 1st - September 30th) 2009 & 2010!!!

Barry County has stayed fairly stable in the economic climate we currently face! The county still has a GREAT Manufacturing presence with our service industry being quite large.

This does not change the fact that many foreclosures still hit the market on a daily basis. While these foreclosures are still a huge part of our Real Estate lives we do see a small increase in selling prices happening! The data below shows these figures...

Barry County Sold Properties.
Sold from July 1st - September 30th

2009: 159 Sold Properties / Average Sale Price of $103,500 / Average Days on Market of 128!!

2010: 120 Sold Properties / Average Sale Price of $107,450 / Average Days on Market of 110!!

This clearly shows a slight rise in Average Sale Price. You can see that the number of properties is slightly less for 2010. We feel this is attributed to the First Time Home Buyer Tax Credit in 2009. Many cheap properties were bought up and this shows that in the numbers above. Cheap Foreclosures = Lower Sale Price / Many Buyers = More Sold Properties!

We hope that the end of 2010 and into 2011 we will see some great activity and stabilization on the home buying front!


Monday, September 20, 2010

Fall Maintenance!!

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Thursday, August 26, 2010

Events around from Aug 27th - Aug 29th!!!

Hastings 33rd Annual Summerfest

Come on down to Hastings and join in on the FUN!

Things to do from Free Trolley Rides, Parades, Duck Race, Concessions, Classic Car & Motorcycle Shows and many Live Entertainment acts to boot! If you think it you can be sure the Summerfest will have it!

Click on link below to get a copy of the schedule!

NBAA 2010 1 on 1 National Championship

Miller Real Estate's own Mark Hewitt will be competing in this years event held at Gun Lake.

Mark was points leader in his division and hopefully goes on to claim the top prize! Just like in Real Estate he has been scouting Gun Lake and is on to certain "LEADS" that may help him get to the top!

Click on link below to check out additional info.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

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Friday, August 20, 2010

Events in Barry County Aug 20th - 22nd.

Busy weekend in Barry County. Check out some of these local events!

Aug 20th: Gun Lake Art Hop
Aug 20th - 21st: Orangeville Day @ Orangeville Township Park, Clarksville Steam and Gas Engine Association.
Aug 21st: County Wide Yard Sale @ Historic Charlton Park (9:00AM-3:00PM)
Aug 21st-22nd: 4H Pleasure Horse Show @ Barry County Expo Center.

Come out and support our great community! Enjoy what Barry County has to offer!!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Relay for Life!

The 2010 Relay for Life starts Friday August 13th @ 12PM.

Come out to Tyden Park to support the fighters, survivors and those lost to the disease.

For more information Google: Relay for Life Barry County.

Friday, August 6, 2010

WHERE TO BE 8/6/2010-8/8/2010 in Barry County!

Live in Barry County? Visiting Barry County? Want something to do this weekend? Check these great events out listed below and see why Barry County is truly GREAT!

Friday August 6th.
- Sportsman's Expo @ Prairieville Farms.
- Middleville River Bank Music Series: 6:30 - 8:30PM. Concert on river bank, held at Stage Coach Park. Free of Charge. Bring your own lawn chair. Local restaurants will have suppers available picnic style.

Saturday August 7th.
- Barry Expo Flea Market: Located @ 1350 N. M-37 HWY., Hastings. Come to one of the largest sales in the area!
- Lake Odessa Car Show.

Sunday August 8th.
- 4-H Horse Show at the Barry Expo Center: 1350 N. M-37 HWY., Hastings.
- Summer Sunday Dinner and Hike at Pierce Cedar Creek Institute: 701 W. Cloverdale Rd., Hastings. Call (269) 721-4190 for details.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

3 Month Market Snapshot!

The last 3 months have seen some good activity on the home sales front!

The chart below shows sales from 04/22/2010 to 07/21/2010. These are priced from $100,000 to $250,000 in Hastings, Delton-Kellogg and Thornapple-Kellogg School Districts.

While this looks great as far as time on the market the true indicator is price. Many of these sold listings were priced correctly and made for a quicker sale.

Monday, June 21, 2010

MLS Conversion Update

There are imense amounts of data being switched over in this process. Hundreds of thousands of listings with pictures will need to be transfered. This process is taking more time than normal and because of this the conversion is set to happen July 14th!

Keep on the lookout for details!

Thursday, June 10, 2010


Realtors working in Barry County list homes on the Grand Rapids Association of Realtors (GRAR) Multiple Listing Service (MLS). This system is used to input homes online so the public and Realtors can search for these specific listings. The GRAR system covers most of Barry, Kent, Ionia and Allegan Counties. Southern Barry County and others surrounding use the South and West Michigan Regional Information Center (SWMRIC) to list properties. THESE TWO WILL SOON COMBINE!

This integration will give you and us a massive amount of data. Not only will it show every single home for sale in our county, it will also give us a wide area to pull data from to properly list your home for sale. Whether it's size, price or location we will better be able to analyze the best price point. If you have ever heard the phrase "Let me check the other system (MLS)," this will be no more.

This larger combination will serve as far North as Manistee County, as far East as Ionia County and South to the Michigan border!

Look for this to take place within the month of June. Stay in contact with us here on the Blog for further updates!!


Friday, May 28, 2010

First Time Home-Buyers set RECORD in 2009!

The number of First-Time Home buyers rose to 47% of all home sales. This is the highest on record since 1981. The previous high was in 1991 and was at 44%. The interesting point about this is that the last cyclical peak of First-Time home buyers was during the last noteworthy economic downturn, with First-Time buyers starting the chain reaction that led the nation out of recession.

87% of 2009 buyers consider their home a good investment, and more than half see it as a better investment than stocks. Twelve percent of buyers own two homes, while another three percent own three or more homes.

When asked where they first learned about the home purchased, 36 percent of buyers said a real estate agent; 36 percent the Internet; 12 percent from yard signs; 6 percent from a friend, neighbor or relative; 5 percent home builders; 2 percent a print or newspaper ad; 2 percent directly from the seller; and less than 1 percent a home book or magazine.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010


The government funded tax credit is ending soon. Call Miller Real Estate NOW to find your perfect home and recieve up to $8,000.

Whether your purchasing a $40,000 handyman special or $300,000 waterfront oasis you could recieve some type of credit.
Read below to find out how!

Here are the details:

1. You must have a signed Purchase Agreement (signed by Seller and Buyer) by April 30th.
* If you have a signed Purchase Agreement by April 30th you have until July 30th to close on the home.

2. The home must become your primary residence.

3. To recieve the credit you can either:
- File and ammendment to your 2009 return.
- Apply it toward your 2010 return by April 15th 2011.

4. What you will recieve?
- First Timer: 10% of Purchase Price up to $8,000.
- Existing Homeowner: 10% of Purchase Price up to $6,500.

Make sure you check with your tax professional on the filing details.
If you have any questions call Miller Real Estate @ 269-945-5182.

Click on picture at right side of this blog that is titled TAX CREDIT 2009 - 2010 for frequently asked questions on the Tax Credit.


Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Miller Real Estate "Market Update"


Saturday, February 27, 2010


Many listings in the market today include Foreclosures, Bank Owned Homes, Homeowner Owned Homes, Short Sales, Hud Homes and Auction's it is important to understand what type of financing will approve the right type of home.

I hope this guide will help you in the process of being ready to make an offer on your potential new purchase!!

There are several Mortgage Products available to the able home buyer. It is important to be knowledgeable of what product will fit you and what Lender will be most able to assist and guide you easily through the process.

1. The Call

-It takes a simple phone call to set up the beginning process for purchasing your home. The best place to start is your local bank. See what products they offer, what services they provide and most importantly feel comfortable enough to know that in giving your most secured information, you will be handled most effectively and safely through the process.
- Your Lender of choice will set up a meeting to determine what price range you are able to buy within and what product will best suite your financial needs.

2. The Meet

- Your Lender should be prompt in meeting you at the time that was set. If they are late, confused or hard to may be time to look elsewhere.
- When coming to the meeting you should be able to present valuable information (W-2's, tax returns, bank statements, identification and any other needed information that is required to start the process. There may be things you will have to bring back in and when those are needed be prompt in doing so to speed up the process!

3. The Product

- The bank of your choice will most certainly have many loan products available. This is MOST IMPORTANT because it will determine what type of house you will be looking into!
- Product Types (These are a few products that are most widely used.)

* FHA / Rural Development: This product is most widely used for first time home buyers. It requires less of a down payment and can be approved to someone with a lower credit rating. This product can be used to purchase any available property (Hud Home, Foreclosure, Homeowner Owned, etc).
* MSHDA: This product is great for someone needed help with a down payment and also helps in repairing a run down home. This product is available to any buyer with a lower credit score, less cash on hand or a buyer wanting to renovate parts of a home. This product can be used only on FORECLOSURE properties in certain areas (be sure to check with your Realtor or Lender to determine which locations are available).
* Conventional: This product is most used by a buyer with a great credit score and has 20% to put down towards the purchase price. In instances with a buyer having a lower credit score, the Lender may require Mortgage Insurance which requires a higher monthly payment. If this Mortgage Insurance is purchased in some instances the Lender may only require 3-5% down toward the purchase price. This product can be used for purchase on any available property (Hud Home, Foreclosure, Homeowner Owned, etc).

There are many other products available to buyers. These few are most widely used and most available.

4. The Result
- At this stage of the process you should know what product you are using and at what price the home can be purchased at. This is valuable information that is useful in making an offer to purchase a home. Your Lender should present you with a PRE-APPROVAL LETTER that should also be given to your Realtor.
- You and your Realtor will be able to narrow the choices and then determine which homes are most attractive to go through.

$$ When starting the home buying process you should already be looking at what is currently available. Speak to a Realtor on the current market and what type of homes are out there. The PRE-APPROVAL LETTER will then determine which houses you should narrow down to and which homes you will then want to view.

$$ The viewing process takes time out of your busy life. This also creates time for your Realtor, the listing Realtor and the owner of the home. Make sure that when you are about to view homes that you have a PRE-APPROVAL LETTER ready. You may fall in love with a house and it's never fun to find out that it sold the next day. Your PRE-APPROVAL LETTER will be crucial in the fact that if you find the home of your can make an offer ON THE SPOT!

Thanks Again

Miller Real Estate
149 West State Street
Hastings, MI 49058

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

What Your Home May Need This YEAR!!

- The best way to protect the value of your abode: Keep it well - maintained. Below is a quick list on some ideas of how to do that! -

Your home is likely to have issues throughout the years. If the minor issues or yearly checkups are overlooked these could turn into costly fixes later on down the road.

1. Clean vents behind your dryer: As you are now drying heaver cloths these cloths generate more lint. Clean vents will help dry them quicker and lower your risk of fires. (Stores carry kits for this and can cost from $15 -$45 dollars.)

2. Replace old windows: Furnace running often? House still seem cold? Replace old windows with storm windows and make sure they fit properly. This can be somewhat costly but in the long run a payoff for better insulation....not to mention easier to open and close!!

3. Check your furnace filter: Once a month during heating season you will want to check for cleanliness. If it is excessively dirty change it. This change is usually done 2 times a year to help the furnace run more efficiently. (Each filter costs $6 - $20 a piece.)


1. Inspect homes exterior: Look for loose siding or trim, cracks, and crumbling mortar caused by harsh winter conditions, and examine your attic for signs of leaks. The hour or so this may take could save thousands in new roofing, siding, or new foundations.

2. Look at your lawn: Now that you can see it again cut down the thatch, or the layer of dead crass. If the thatch is thick look into de-thatching the lawn. (Professional charges $30 - $100 for the service. Rent a power thatcher yourself for around $65 a day.)

3. Inspect your air-conditioning system: Get your system checked professionally. They will clean, inspect, and adjust before the temp hits 90 degrees. (They will charge $75 - $175 a year for a HVAC contract.)

4. Look for termites and ants: They love getting out in spring weather too. Have your home checked for these wood destroying insects on a yearly basis. (Professional will charge $75 - $100. Pick up a can of insect killer and spray around foundation of home for $5 - $10.)


1. Check your hot water heater: Since it is much warmer out chances are you can go a few hours without the hot water. Drain and refill your water heater to remove sediment. While your at it, test the heater's pressure valve according to manufacturers instructions.

2. Inspect your roof: Take some binoculars and look for loose shingles, mold, mildew, or cracked chimney mortar. If you can catch these problems early you can avoid spending $2,000 - $12,000 for a roof replacement.

3. Rainy Spring: Check for leaks throughout home. Standing water should be removed and taken care of. These problems can cause major problems and mold to grow. If you can't find where a leak is coming from get an inspector to check it out. (Professional inspections costs $100 - $200.)


1. Water will freeze: Take down garden hoses, drain and store, and put insulation around spouts. If you have a sprinkler system have it professionally blown out. Water in those pipes can cause serious damage. ($100 - $200 for this to be done.)

2. Check and clean gutters: Keep gutters free from debris. This debris can get caught up in downspouts and when water then freezes to it during winter these gutters and downspouts could break or fall out.

3. Prune and cut back trees: Once the trees have dropped the leaves prune them back. This will prevent the closest trees from scraping and destroying your siding and contribute to greater curb appeal of your home.


Justin Peck
Miller Real Estate
149 West State Street
Hastings, MI 49058

Cell: 269-760-4965

Barry County

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State of Michigan

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