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In This Issue

Open House Blitz

Fall Home Check List

Which Homes are Selling?

Scary Pumpkin Situation

Local Pumpkin Patches

Ames Market Numbers

Over 100 Open Houses Oct. 10 and 11!

Does the change in Seasons have you thinking about changing your address? This weekend you will have the perfect opportunity to visit any number of Open Houses. There are currently over 100 Open Houses scheduled throughout Ames and several surrounding communities. Hunziker & Associates has 63 of the 100 homes that will be open.

Click here to view open house times and addresses.
Getting your home ready for winter could mean money in your pockets. If you are adding insulation, replacing windows, upgrading your furnace or installing a new water heater, you could qualify for tax credits from the government.
Energy Tax Credits for your home

  • Roof: Check roof and around vents, skylights and chimneys for leaks. Repair as necessary.
  • Filters: Remember to clean or replace filters once a month, or as needed. Check and clean dryer vent, air conditioner, stove hood and room fans. Keep heating and cooling vents clean and free from furniture and draperies.
  • Windows and Doors: Seal drafty doors and windows. If you added up all of the small cracks where heating and cooling escapes from a home, it would be the same as having a window open. Replace seals as needed.
  • Heating System: Have heating system serviced. Most local HVAC companies will conduct a furnace check for $50-$70. Change/keep filters clean.
  • Gutters: Clean gutters and drain pipes so leaves won't clog them and be sure they drain away from the house. Drain outside faucets.
  • Safety Equipment: Ensure that all smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors and fire extinguishers are in good working order. Replace batteries in appropriate devices as needed, or at least twice each year.
  • Fireplace: Clean fireplace of ashes. Have chimney professionally cleaned. Make sure damper closes tightly.
  • Fall Lawn Care:
    • Apply herbicides to broadleaf weeds
    • Correct soil pH: if your lawn is not performing well, have your soil tested. If the soil test shows a need to reduce acidity, apply lime now. If alkalinity needs to be reduced, apply sulphur.
    • Thatch removal: de-thatch your lawn, by raking; for bad cases of soil compaction, you may have to employ the technique known as core aeration, for which lawn equipment known as "aerators" can be bought or rented.
    • Rake leaves, or use a leaf vacuum, lest the leaves smother your grass over the winter
    • Lawn equipment care: make sure to drain old gas out of lawn mowers after last mowing

Are All Price Points Selling?

There is much discussion about how the real estate market is in the middle of it's turn around based on sales increasing on a year-over-year basis. Though the fact that housing is again moving is fabulous news, let's not lose sight of which homes are selling.

Here is a closer look at different price ranges and how they are faring in the current boom:
Ames Residential and Rural Subdivisions
Price Absorption Rate*
$0-$125,000 4.6 Months
$125,000 - $175,000 4.1 Months
$175,000 - $225,000 5.3 Months
$225,000 - $300,000 5.9 Months
$300,000 - $400,000 18.0 Months
$400,000 + 12.0 Months

As we can see, this rebound has only affected the lower price points. Upper end sellers need to realize what is actually happening behind the headlines.

*One of the most vital fundamentals (in housing) the ratio between supply and demand.

Based on Pending Sales information for the month of September 2009 as reported to the Ames Multiple Listings Service.
Pumpkin Patch

The pumpkin situation has been looking scary.

In recent weeks empty spaces were visible on grocery stores shelves where canned pumpkin usually sat. Earlier this month, USA Today sounded an alarm, reporting that "a chilly, damp summer in the Midwest and New England might make it difficult for people in those regions to find the perfect Halloween pumpkin."
But in Iowa, there is little need to hoard the gourd for decorating or devouring, according to local grocers and farmers.

Click here to read more


Pumpkin Patches-
fun for the whole family

Center Grove Orchard, Cambridge -

Blacks Heritage Farm, Ames -

The Berry Patch, Nevada -

DeMoss Pumpkin Farm, Ames -


Ames Market Numbers*

  Ames 2009 Ames 2008 Story County 2009 Story County 2008
Active listings as of 10/1 230 270   189 NA
Homes SOLD YTD 447 483   221 207
Average Sale Price $185,493 $182,430   $133,757 $147,989
Average Days on the Market 93 90   111 128
Sale Price to List price Ratio 95.5% 95.5%   92.4% 93.9%

Based on Sales information as reported to the Ames Multiple Listings Service thru 9/30/09.
Ames - Ames Residential and Rural Subdivisions
Story County - Residential, excluding Ames and Ames Rural Subdivisions
Hunziker Logo

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).