Updates

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It’s been over a year since millions of employees left their offices and went home to work remotely. During that time, everything from 9-to 5-work schedules to client meetings and office parties have  been disrupted  or transformed. As organizations plan for life beyond the pandemic, a new way of doing business is emerging—the hybrid workplace.     Embraced for its potential to combine the best of traditional offices and more loosely structured remote  workplaces , the hybrid workplace promises to accommodate the needs of those who return to the office and those who continue working from home. Of course,  such a sweeping reorganization of your business ...
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In the latest issue of  The Minnesota Realtor® , we celebrate Pride and Homeownership: Staff Spotlight: Laurie Ganz Letter from Leadership: Searching for a Home of Their Own 3 Steps for Optimizing Your Digital Door Knocks Making a Downpayment on a New & Better Life Opportunities for Homeownership Through Downpayment Assistance Marching for Pride, Progress, and Fair Treatment What's Hot on the Hotline Advocating for Homeownership MNR's 2021 Consumer Campaign Upcoming Events + Education What Advice Do You Have for First-Time Homebuyers? Meet a Member: Amy Ruzick We Are Minnesota Realtors® Read Here
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Minnesota Realtors® is working to carry out the mission of diversity, equity, and inclusion among the 22,000 members across our state. Below are resources and information as you continue to fight for fair housing and stand up for equity in homeownership. Love Letters MNR’s Broker Broadcast on Buyer Love Letters and Fair Housing Laws :  https://youtu.be/092bW1frZcI MNR’s April 2021 The Legal Download featuring Article 10 and Buyer Love Letters Breaking Ice June 14, 2-4 PM (No CE) | Cost: Pay What You Want (or Free) The MNR Diversity Committee is excited to offer this award-winning performance by The Pillsbury House + Theater. Actors portray ...
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According to research from the National Association of Realtors® (NAR), Millennials make up 37% of the buyers currently in the market, making them the largest generational group searching for homes. NAR reports that 26% of millennials indicate they are looking to buy in the next 12 months.   Here are tips for working with and reaching millennials:   Be Honest & Real Millennials desire transparency and value relationships - two qualities that successful Realtors ® cultivate. You can demonstrate this as you guide your clients through each step of the home buying process. Be honest, be real, and don’t forget to be yourself.   ...
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For-sale-by-owner transactions are risky, time-consuming, and costly   With packs of buyers far outstripping the scarce supply of affordable homes in Minnesota, selling your home without the aid of Realtor ®   could  seem like an attractive , money-saving  option.  S nap a few pictures , p ost  the listing, plant a sign on your lawn and watch the offers come rolling in!     What could possibly go wrong?     Plenty. From initial appraisal and preparation to fielding offers and negotiating the closing, selling a home is a complex undertaking with many pieces—all of them in motion. So, if you’re thinking of going  the  for-sale-by-owner ...
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Rise in new listings can’t match demand and plummeting supply Closed sales were up +10.9% over last April as pending sales soared +32.0%, and new listings surged +18.2%, according to Minnesota Realtors ® (MNR), the membership organization supporting all 22,000 Realtors in the state. But the rapidly heating market was tempered by the widening gap between buyer demand and available inventory. With just a one-month supply of housing inventory available, the number of homes for sale dropped 51.7% from 17,634 homes in April 2020 to only 8,519 homes this April. The median sales price hit $305,000, a +10.9% increase over last April, and days on market shriveled ...
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Rise in new listings can’t match demand and plummeting supply MINNEAPOLIS (May 11, 2021) — Closed sales were up +10.9% over last April as pending sales soared +32.0%, and new listings surged +18.2%, according to Minnesota Realtors ® (MNR), the membership organization supporting all 22,000 Realtors in the state. But the rapidly heating market was tempered by the widening gap between buyer demand and available inventory. With just a one-month supply of housing inventory available, the number of homes for sale dropped 51.7% from 17,634 homes in April 2020 to only 8,519 homes this April. The median sales price hit $305,000, a +10.9% increase over last April, ...
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Realtors® in Minnesota generously give their time and energy to help make Minnesota one of the best places to live. They’re friends, neighbors, coaches, and community leaders who give countless hours of their time and resources to ensure communities can thrive.  The Good Neighbor Award is an annual award given by  Minnesota Realtors® (MNR) to honor the Realtors® whose volunteer work makes a positive impact on their communities. Honorees demonstrate a commitment to improve the lives of those in need by generously donating their time and talents to charitable organizations.    In 2020, John and Matt Pecarich, a father-and-son team from Kurilla Real ...
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The commercial real estate market is recovering but remains weak compared to conditions before the COVID-19 pandemic, according to NAR commercial members who responded to the 2021 Q1 Commercial Real Estate Quarterly Market Survey and industry data. Acquisitions for large commercial real estate―properties or portfolios of at least $2.5 million ― fell 28% year-over-year in the first quarter of 2021, with transactions declining across all property types, except for hotel acquisitions. Investors could be acquiring hotels to convert into other uses such as multifamily housing. Among commercial members of NAR who participated in the quarterly market survey and whose ...
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Happy Cinco de Mayo! The Land of 10,000 Lakes has some must visit spots to get your taco fix, from the Twin Cities to Greater Minnesota. Are you ready to taco ‘bout it?    Andale Taqueria - Richfield Nestled right off Highway 494, Andale Taqueria’s little diner and shop packs a big punch! This restaurant and mercado offers patrons a tasty array of Mexican cuisine, and was even visited by Diner King, Guy Fieri!   El Taco Riendo - Minneapolis & Crystal A must stop for any taco lover, El Taco Riendo is what your taco dreams have been missing. With two locations in the Twin Cities, you’ll be able to get tacos for lunch and dinner without ...
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Happy Arbor Day

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Though this day is typically a celebration of tree planting, we thought we’d  take this this opportunity to  give you some pointers on tree care.      Tree maintenance is vital to  your  property . Your property’s lawn and landscape  enhances  property value and curb appeal.  Additionally, diseased or infested trees can pose as a disclosure issue , as the cost for remedying these issues can be costly. Neglect of tree care can cause significant damage to lawns and structures.     3 Tips for New Trees   Water  Y our  T ree:  newly planted trees need 15-25 gallons of water once a week for 3-5 years when the ground is thawed. ...
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A finished basement can make your home more spacious, livable, and enjoyable. It can also add dollar-value for eventual resale. But before you start planning  where to place your  home movie theater and speak-easy style wet bar, there are  four  important things to consider.   1. Remodeling is Riskier  in Older Basements   In most cases, basements built before the mid-1990s were not designed  for use  as living spaces.  Generally , the foundations are not waterproof, and there is no vapor barrier beneath the concrete flooring. That  creates  high humidity levels and greater probability of flooding from snowmelt and rainstorms. ...
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As part of its Fair Housing Action Plan, NAR has teamed up with the Perception Institute to create a free online workshop to help members avoid implicit bias in their daily business interactions. What is implicit bias? It is important to understand that implicit bias is not the same thing as racism, although the two concepts are related. Overt racism involves conscious prejudice against members of a particular racial group and can be influenced by both explicit and implicit biases. Other forms of discrimination that can be influenced by unconscious biases include ageism, sexism, homophobia, and ableism. One of the benefits of being aware of the potential ...
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Meet A Member: Kim Wolff

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Kim Wolff,  TimberWolff  Realty LLC   Years as a Realtor®:  17 years     City:   Lutsen   How did you get into real estate?   “My mother was a Realtor® and my father was a land developer while I was growing up in Indiana. I am pretty sure I learned by osmosis, but never desired to sell real estate until we moved to the North Shore in 2001.   “The North Shore is such a beautiful unique environment, not your typical landscape for homes and land. I love selling real estate on the North Shore.”       Best way to de-stress   “I am not sure I am able to de-stress! But if I stick to my morning walks ...
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Want to add extra life to your home? Brighten any space with plants! Not only will they brighten your home but studies have shown they reduce stress, boost your mood, and increase your productivity ! Here are plants to brighten every room of your home:  Bathroom - Spider plant Spider plants can be in any room, but love the humidity! Try sticking a spider plant in a well-lit bathroom window. Water well, and make sure the plant doesn’t get too soggy.  Bedroom - Snake Plant Similar to the spider plant, snake plants can actually be in any room, since they are not a fussy plant, but their dazzling bright green stems will inspire ...
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New technology can make your house more sustainable – but can you afford it?   With millions of Americans working from home during the pandemic, you’d think our carbon footprints would be disappearing. And though there has been a dip in emissions due to reduced commuting (U.S. output dropped 12% at the height of the 2020 pandemic 1 ), the United States still leads the world in annual per-capita carbon output. How do we turn it down? Although our homes and lifestyles are creating the problem, they also hold the key to solving it. From eco-friendly designs in new home construction to incremental upgrades to improve the efficiency of existing ...
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Happy Earth Day! It’s an important time to support environmental protections across the globe. What better way to celebrate than to upgrade your home to be green !   Going green doesn’t necessarily mean spending thousands of dollars on fancy solar panels or on an electric car. By making small changes and adding some new habits, you can shrink your home’s carbon footprint considerably.   So, whether it’s switching to energy-efficient light bulbs or making your lawn bee-friendly, going green can be good for the environment and put more green in your pocketbook!   Here are tips for making your home more energy efficient:   Do an ...
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LEED, EnergyStar, HERS® Index – do you know the difference? Below is a list of Green terms and acronyms you’re likely to encounter in the field. Energy Star® : www.energystar.gov This certification is awarded by the US Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Energy and was introduced in 1995. There are more than 2 million Energy Star® certified homes in the US. Energy Star® certified homes are at least 10% more energy-efficient than homes built to code. In addition to buildings, plants, and residential homes, the Energy Star® certification can be found on the labels of products such as appliances, lighting, electronics, building materials, and more. ...
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Is Your Home Ready for Solar?

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Today’s solar panels are  less expensive ,  more  powerful, and ready to take on Minnesota winters   Although you might think a solar-powered home is much better suited to the sunbaked expanses of Arizona than Minnesota’s snowy north country, that’s not actually true. In fact, the North Star state is surprisingly well suited for turning solar rays into electricity for your home. Plus, with a 26% federal tax credit and rebates from state utilities, a solar-panel array on your roof is a good investment today and in the long term. Here are the facts:     The average  5-kilowatt  ( kW )  rooftop solar-power system produces  ...
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Any pro will tell you that having visually compelling content is key to creating a social media strategy. Not only is it important for breaking through and catching the attention of your audiences, but it’s also imperative that the images speak to your Realtor® brand. our brand speaks to who you are as a Realtor® and it’s important that your social media speaks to your brand. And in visually-busy social media apps like Instagram, having well-crafted, visual images will help you stand out in the battle for attention.  Here are four tips to get ahead of the competition:  You Don’t Have to Bust a Move To get Attention Though some social media ...
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As a Realtor® you are essentially operating your own business. There's a huge learning curve, and it can often feel overwhelming. Understand that when starting your own business, it’s pretty typical that people will apply for business start-up loans because the cost of doing and creating business is not cheap. In fact, most new companies often operate at a loss for the first two to five years. Real estate can be a prosperous occupation if you start with the right perspective and respect the process. Here are some things to keep in mind: 1. Licensing fees Once you successfully pass your classes, then you have to pay for and pass a state licensing exam, plus ...
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Realtor® Kath Hammerseng reflects on Fair Housing through the struggles and achievements of Minnesota’s LGBTQ+ community   From the Stonewall Riots of 1969 to the legalization of Gay marriage in 2015, the nation’s LGBTQ+ community has fought innumerable battles for equality and justice under the law. During her 25 years as a Realtor ® , entrepreneur Kath  Hammerseng  has seen much progress but acknowledges there is still much work to be done. As we observe 53 years since the passage of the FAIR Housing Act, we talked with the former MAR President and MNR’s 2020 Ed Anderson Award winner about the decades of LGBTQ+ achievements despite ...
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Spring Is here in Minnesota - the grass is growing, the birds are singing, and beautiful flowers are starting to bloom in gardens across the state.   So put the petal to the metal, and get ready to check out these beautiful gardens in Minnesota:     Leif Erikson Park & Rose Garden – Duluth Stop and smell the roses at this colorful and scenic North Shore park. With over 3,000 acres overlooking Lake Superior, you’ll be hard pressed to find a prettier view in Duluth. Bonus fun: the park also features a Viking ship, a fountain, and a delightful gazebo where you can stop and take in the scenery.   Marjorie McNeely Conservatory ...
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Why You Need A Realtor®

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Buying or selling a home can be complicated, stressful, and overwhelming. No wonder it’s got a permanent spot on the list of Top Major Life Events! That’s why it’s important to have an experienced Realtor® guide you.   From start to finish, Realtors® help make a daunting process easy. Highly trained in the nuances of real estate, they’re prepared to clear obstacles and resolve issues quickly, efficiently, and professionally. Whether you’re just starting out and looking for an affordable first home, or downsizing your empty nest, Realtors® have the knowledge, experience, and skill to help you achieve the best possible outcome.   So, whether it’s ...
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New listings drop as housing supply continues to shrink MINNEAPOLIS (April 12, 2021) — In March, the shortage of affordable housing continued to squeeze a heated market driven by rising buyer demand, according to Minnesota Realtors ® (MNR), the membership organization supporting all 22,000 Realtors in the state. Although closed sales increased +3.1% over last March, and pending sales were up +12.1%, activity was dampened by a -10.9% decline in new listings. Homes for sale were down -54.8% over last year, leaving only a one-month supply of inventory statewide. These factors made for an extremely competitive market where the median sales price rose +10.1% ...
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New listings drop as housing supply continues to shrink MINNEAPOLIS (April 12, 2021) — In March, the shortage of affordable housing continued to squeeze a heated market driven by rising buyer demand, according to Minnesota Realtors ® (MNR), the membership organization supporting all 22,000 Realtors in the state. Although closed sales increased +3.1% over last March, and pending sales were up +12.1%, activity was dampened by a -10.9% decline in new listings. Homes for sale were down -54.8% over last year, leaving only a one-month supply of inventory statewide. These factors made for an extremely competitive market where the median sales price rose +10.1% ...
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We Are Minnesota - Jona Flores

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Though Jona Flores has only been a Realtor® for four years,  she is already making waves in the real estate community. Jona was selected for NAR's 2021 30 Under 30 for not only her strong dedication to the industry, but also for her commitment to the community. Jona sees volunteering as her social responsibility, and is deeply passionate about being proactive in addressing the issues affecting communities and people across the state - including ending homelessness and bridging the racial housing gap in Minnesota. It was during a speech from MAR (Minneapolis Area Realtors) CEO Carrie Chang that inspired Jona to get more involved with the MAR Foundation, ...
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Not all families have the same opportunities for homeownership, with many facing more constraints in their effort to achieve the American Dream. There are sizeable differences in the homeownership rate across racial groups, with the rate of homeownership for minority families lagging behind the national average. Given that homeownership contributes to wealth accumulation and that the homeownership rate is lower in minority groups, data shows that the net worth for these groups is also lower. At $188,200, the net worth of a typical White family was nearly eight times greater than that of a Black family ($24,100) in 2019. NAR's  Snapshot of Race & Home Buying ...
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Amy Peterson   ABR, AHWD, C2EX, CRS, GREEN, GRI, SFR   Edina Realty   Many local utility companies offer energy audits for free – or a nominal fee. Contact your local utility company to see if the service is available, then be ready to talk to clients about what updates may have the best return on investment. Even some lower cost updates can make a huge difference for comfort, energy bills, and/or home resale values.     Shang Thao-Berg   Realty Group LLC   I recommend investing in LED lighting. It requires much less wattage than the CFL or incandescent light bulbs, which is why LED bulbs are more energy-efficient and longer ...
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Did you know there are nearly 200 craft breweries in Minnesota? From the clear northern waters of the Lake of the Woods to the prairie expanses near the South Dakota border, our state is home to countless artisan lagers, IPAs, blonde ales, doppelbocks, Belgian sours, coffee porters, and even peanut butter stouts. Is there a beer for every one of our 10,000 lakes? There’s only one way to find out. Start planning your cross-state brewery tour.   In honor of National Beer Day, we’ve assembled a guide to some of Minnesota’s best craft breweries. Have a safe trip and please drink responsibly.   NOTE : Most Popular Beer based on Untappd rating; Recommended ...
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After hearing the Douglas County Habitat For Humanity was in need of donations, the Greater Alexandria Area Association of Realtors® (GAAAR) organized a donation event on Saint Patrick’s Day with the slogan: “Help fill our pot o’gold for the ReStore!” 🍀🌈 And fill they did!   Word spread quickly about the drive as people began to call the GAAAR offices to sign up for a timeslot for items to be picked up. The phones rang off the hook, and even required additional members to help answer them!   In total, 30 stops were arranged with over 25 GAAAR members volunteering to pick up the donated items. Space filled up quickly, and before the team knew it, ...
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From green forests and sandy lake shores to gorgeous river-bluff overlooks, Minnesota is jam packed with out-of-this world scenery. Ready for your Minnesota nature get-away? No Instagram filter needed because these wonders will enchant you with their natural beauty! Here are five beautiful Minnesota locations that await you:   Voyageurs National Park - International Falls Voyageurs is a beautiful water-based national park located at the tip of the Minnesota and Canadian border. Made up of four large lakes and 26 smaller lakes covering 218,054 acres, it offers enough space for hiking, swimming, kayaking, or just sitting and becoming ...
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After a long tough winter, Minnesotans are ready  reclaim  the fresh air and natural spaces of their yards. Sure, the grass is  matted  and  garden beds  are   disheveled , but it’s all a canvas  for  your imagination. With a few tools, supplies, and a little sweat, you can  turn  it into a colorful oasis for relaxation, play, and a socially distanced garden party or two. Here are a few tips to get you started.   Transform  the Front Yard    Until recently, front yards were strictly ornamental. A few bushes; a smattering of flowers; and maybe a lawn gnome to keep the maple tree company.  Then the pandemic  happened,  and this overlooked ...
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It’s National Take A Way in the Park Day – and the only thing more iconic than Minnesota’s 10,000 Lakes, are its stunning parks! So, grab your walking shoes and get ready for scenic views, delightful sculptures, and Minnesota’s natural beauty!       Tamarack Nature Center – White Bear Township This 320-acre nature preserve is the ideal place for a walk all year-round. With nature paths of varying length, walkers can opt for a quick half-mile walk on the Chickadee Trail Loop or a longer, more rigorous journey on the 2.5-mile Dragonfly loop.   Franconia Sculpture Park – Shafer Enjoy some fresh air and art at this 50-acre outdoor ...
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W hile there are many marketing tools to consider for increasing lead generation and driving brand awareness, there are five must-haves that rise to the top.      Live Video As virtual life has become normalized, live video is a trend that continues to grow. People want information fast, and video quickly and effectively delivers your message to clients and potential clients. Live video engages emotionally, helping people connect with you on a more personal level. Whether it’s educating your clients on the market or exploring design trends, video allows you talk about what matters to your clients. Dive in by testing out Facebook live or set up ...
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Though COVID has kept communities and people physically apart, Realtor® Amy Murphy is working to make sure each community member feels connected and cared for. Amy regularly volunteers with VEAP (Volunteers Enlisted to Assist People) - a local nonprofit that helps community members by providing basic needs like food, housing assistance, and other services. Recognizing the tremendous need created by COVID, Amy jumped into action this winter to organize a socially-distanced neighborhood food drive for VEAP. Using donated bags from Target, Amy dropped off the bags to neighbors, then picked them up once they were filled.  Together, Amy and her neighbors ...
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Snow melt can ruin your house and drown a home sale. Here are a few tips for staying above water Article Takeaways   Taking a few preventative measures can greatly reduce the risk of seasonal flooding in your home   Sellers and Realtors ®  should ensure  that  proper  material fact  disclosures are made to prospective buyers , and disclosures updated as needed .    Buyers  may  have the right to cancel a purchase agreement if there is  substantial  flood damage  to the property  before the closing date   As temperatures rise and snow vanishes from yards across  Minnesota , some of that melt  water  inevitably ...
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Minnesota Realtors® has been informed that a number of members received the below text message. DO NOT CLICK THE LINK. This is a spam message. Please delete the message if you receive it.
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According to a recent report from the Urban Institute, virtually all household growth in the next 20 years will consist primarily of people of color, while homeownership rates among people of color in this same time period are projected to remain the same as they are today. The report measures the share of the population that is the head of a household. The breakdown of household growth between now and 2040: Total households are expected to increase by 17.1 Hispanic households are expected to increase by 8.9 million Black households are expected to increase by 3.3 million Households of Asian and other people of color are expected to increase by 4.9 ...
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Spring is just around the corner in Minnesota! With the sun shining and the snow and ice melting, it’s time to start getting your home ready for the changing of seasons.   Whether you’re a new or seasoned homeowner, here are some important tips and good reminders as we shed our winter coats, open our windows, and welcome the warmer weather.   Check Your AC Unit Although hot summer days seem a long way off, now is the time to inspect your AC unit to ensure it is in tip-top shape. Check the filter, hose connections, and vacuum any dust that has accumulated during the off-season.   Clean Out Gutters Just as in the fall, it’s important ...
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