Give your home the “Sniff” test

One of the first things I notice when I walk into your home that is listed for sale is the smell. When marketing your home, you need to consider all of the senses. First, get rid of stinky smells: dishes, laundry, pet, etc. Then, accept the fact that you can’t bake a fresh loaf of bannana bread before every showing. I have seen and personally tried candles, melted wax warmers, and plug ins. My new favorite that I noticed in a beautiful house in River Chase. . .Bath & Body Works Wallflowers. You will need at least one in every main room and bathroom. You can mix and complement the smells. I like the Apple Crumble in the main rooms, and Lavendar Chamomile for bathrooms. Analyze the smell yourself when you first walk in the door from being gone. Make your home smell and show great!

Don’t Keep an Empty Home Empty

I thought the best advice from the August Realtor Magazine for Sellers was:Don’t keep an empty home empty. Buyers can struggle in picturing themselves moving in if a home is left empty. Vacant homes can feel cold and rooms can look smaller than they really are. That’s why builders spend thousands of dollars staging model homes. If your listing is vacant, consider staging it to bring in furniture and accessories to help define the various rooms functions. One lady wrote in to the editor: “That is exactly why our first home has all our furniture and we at off a card table! If you own two homes, don’t leave your first vacant. It just invites lowballs!”

Supra Key Exchange

The San Antonio Board of Realtors is hosting a Supra Lockbox and Supra Key exchange this week. As a home Seller or Buyer these supra keys are important to you. The Supra Lockbox has advanced in technology. The newest and only lockboxes that will work now, are blue. They have controls to keep the box from opening during the night, and keeps a record of who opens the lockbox. The least secure boxes are combos. I strongly advise against using combos, especially if the home is occupied.

I traded in my old Supra Key to an E Key for my iPhone which is an asset to my Buyers. It automatically updates! Yea! No more mundane, slow updates, but it will always be ready to open those lockboxes. If I’ve shown you very many homes, you will have watched me be torchered at least once by an update. 🙂 The new E Key also has additional technology that I will learn more about as I use it.

I just love how Real Estate embraces new technology!–Katie

Central Texas Wildfire- Check your Home Insurance


Thanks to our brave firemen and women, the wildfires in Central Texas are currently under control. Strong winds and high temperatures on Sunday kept the safety officials on their toes. As the Central Texas authorities issued red flag warning levels, the safety officials have kept a close watch on the current fire scenario.

The fire that started Labor Day weekend in Bastrop County consumed an enourmous amount of the Lost Pines and devastated many homes. There were several fires in Central Texas that broke out the same weekend due to the extreme, dry, windy conditions. Many of us in Central Texas were extra vigilant and worried about our own homes and an evacuation plan. It also alerts us property owners to check if we have adequate home insurance.

As reported by a 2010 survey, most Texas real estate insurance claims were weather related. Top claims of the past year were related to wind, water, and hail. Though these claims are generally covered under the homeowner’s standard policy, people need to purchase separate flood insurance via the NFIP (National Flood Insurance Program).

In case there is hail and wind exclusion on the policy, it can be obtained via the TWIA (Texas Windstorm Insurance Association).

Make sure you have adequate insurance policies to protect your real estate investments.

Steele Farms

Do you want fresh produce delivered to your doorstep every week? I have had the pleasure to work with the beautiful Steele Farms family and am fascinated to learn about their gardening. Steele Farms can hand deliver a sac full of organically grown produce to your doorstep weekly! They have staple items and then you get a choice of seasonal items to add to it. Check out their website at They also sell at local farmers markets. If you are in New Braunfels or Seguin, they have a weekly route for home deliveries!