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Hunziker & Associates, REALTORS®

In This Issue

REALTORS® do the Homework

Getting Ready for School

Do Schools affect Home Values?

Shopping Tips for Back to School

Links to Area Schools

Market Numbers


REALTORS® do the homework so you don't have to.

Relaxing We all know what a REALTOR® does... sort of. REALTORS® sell houses and help people buy them. Seems easy, right? You may think it is something just about anyone could do, and maybe you have even been considering purchasing or selling your home without the assistance of a REALTOR®. Let's set the record straight: Being a REALTOR® is certainly not as simple as it might initially appear. In fact, the National Association of REALTORS® has identified over 180 steps that a REALTOR® may take in the process of just one transaction.

Many of these steps are complicated legal procedures, involve lots of research and time, may include mediating nasty conflicts, and utilize resources only available to real estate companies. These resources can make an enormous difference, and include networks with other real estate agencies, marketing web sites, virtual tours, professional marketing teams, and access to local market information. Additionally, REALTORS® undergone rigorous training so they can accomplish sales goals, and they also have the collective experience of other agents within the company and prior sales to rely on.

Save yourself a lot of frustration: Let your REALTOR® do the work for you!

For more information on the 180 steps a REALTOR® does for you click here.

Back to School

Getting Ready for the School Year

Yes, it's about that time of year again. Time to start shuttling one kid here and another there, helping with homework, and remembering everyone's events (all while trying to maintain your sanity). But with some good organization principles in place, the next year could start off without a hitch. Here are some great organizing options to think about:

To-Do Lists can be lifesavers! These can be calendar-style or list-style, on paper, on whiteboard, on a computer program or on a chalkboard. You can color-code entries for each member of the family. To-do lists can be used for homework, chores, important tasks, activities, shopping lists, meals, and anything else that needs to be remembered. Whatever format, to-do lists are helpful to ensure everything actually gets done.

Another way to stay organized is to have designated places for everything. Homework, important papers, lunchboxes, shoes, and backpacks should all have their own place so every family member can find what they need in the mornings. Be sure to create these places in locations that are convenient and usable. Bags and boxes are useful because they have finite boundaries, which helps contain clutter.

Mornings can be very hectic, so it is helpful to prepare as much as possible the night before. This could include setting out breakfast, putting aside an outfit for the next day, packing bags, and anything else that would make the morning easier for you and your family. If there is something really important to remember to take with you, one helpful tip is to put it with your keys. Since you can't leave without your keys, you can't forget the important item!

How do schools affect your home values?

  • It is no secret location plays a huge impact on the desirability of a home, sometimes even as much as condition or square footage. Living near a school can make family life much easier, especially for families with small children or for parents who are teachers. If your home is near a school, it may help create market demand for your home, which significantly increases your chances of easily reselling your home.

  • If you live within a prestigious school district, your home values may benefit as well. According to Cyberhomes' 2009 study, median home sales prices in ZIP codes with very-high-rated schools were 62 percent higher than those in ZIPs with average schools. Of course, school systems are just one of several factors that determine home values. However, an abundance of studies have conclusively found a correlation between the two. If you are going to purchase a home, it may be beneficial to consider school systems even if you do not have children, because they may affect future resale value and the desirability of your home.

  • K-12 schools are not the only schools that impact home values. Colleges and universities are great assets to home values due to the abundance of employment, students, and money they bring to their host cities. Because colleges are relatively stable and almost guaranteed to draw people to their host towns, they naturally create a demand for homes that may not exist elsewhere.
The benefit provided by education for a community is far-reaching, and in the case of its impact on home property values, sometimes in ways you may not expect!

Tips for Back to School Shopping

Back to school shopping can be pretty stressful, both for pocketbooks and for parents attempting to find everything needed for the next school year. To make it easier, we have compiled some tips to make it easier and save you some money!

  • Get organized. Before trying to go out and go shopping, make sure you have a list of everything you need. Stop at schools or look on school websites for lists of needed items. Also, go through each child's supplies and clothes, try on everything, and get rid of what does not fit. By spending an afternoon going through kids' clothes and supplies, you know what is damaged, lost, or ill-fitting so there are no surprises those first few weeks of school. Creating lists also helps keep you on task and on budget.

  • Take advantage of sales, coupons, and promotions to save money. With back to school around the bend, many retailers will have great kids' supplies and clothes on sale.

  • To save money, shop on Iowa's tax-free weekend August 6-7, where you can save on many shoes and clothing items under $100. For a list of which clothing and other items are tax-exempt, visit

  • To avoid the crazy rush just before school starts, try to schedule your afterschool shopping early. Another option includes off-times, when most people are at work or otherwise wouldn't be shopping (for example, a mid-week morning).

Links to Area Schools

Ames Community School District

Ames Christian School

St.Cecilia Catholic School

Maranatha Christian Academy

Ankeny Community School District

Ankeny Christian Academy

Boone Community School District

Sacred Heart School Boone

United Community School

Gilbert Community Schools

Ballard Community Schools

Nevada Community Schools

Roland/Story Community Schools


Ames Market Numbers*

  Ames 2010 Ames 2009 Story County 2010 Story County 2009
Active listings as of 8/2 304 227   202 NA
Homes SOLD Recent 12 mo. 630 538   247 268
Average Sale Price $184,412 $183,440   $138,121 $133,117
Average Days on the Market 87 98   110 126
Sale Price to List Price Ratio 95.1% 95.0%   93.3% 91.4%

*Based on Sales information as reported to the Ames Multiple Listing Service as of 8/2
Ames - Ames Residential and Rural Subdivisions
Story County - Residential, excluding Ames and Ames Rural Subdivisions
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Hunziker & Associates, REALTORS® has been helping people buy and sell homes in Central, Iowa for over 50 years. With offices in Ames, Ankeny, Boone and Nevada, our real estate agents can help you find the "right" place to call home. Our agents have access to hundreds of homes for sale in the Ames, Ankeny, Boone and Nevada areas through the various Multiple Listing Services (MLS). Corporate office location 105 S. 16th St. Ames, Iowa 50010, phone number 515-233-4450. Agents and Brokers are licensed in the state of Iowa.