All posts by kadamscblakes

REALTOR® at Coldwell Banker Lakes Realty in Canadian Lakes, Michigan. Canadian Lakes is home to water front property, world class golf, shopping, dining, and more. Come and see what life can be like in Canadian Lakes! Also working with both buyers and sellers in the surrounding areas. Specializing in Waterfront properties, and with a professional and experienced background, I can help you find your dream home!

How to Stage Your Home When You Have Pets



It is no secret that REALTORS ® suggest staging your home when you put it on the market. It makes sense to think that something attractive will encourage potential buyers. However, being a pet owner can make staging more difficult. Here are the best tips to successfully staging your home when you have an animal.

Minimize visible damage

No matter how we love them, pets aren’t people. They don’t understand that chewing on or scratching up the furniture is bad, or that they shouldn’t dig in the yard, ruin the house plants, or a thousand other things. If you see them daily, you may overlook the chewed-on or dug-up areas around your home. Prospective buyers will not. If there are scratches on the furniture, if the rug has been chewed up, or if there are holes in the yard, fix them. Polish and refinish the wood that has been scratched. Replace or hide rugs that are torn. Don’t just fill in the holes in your yard, but make sure that you have grass, flowers or something decorative to cover the bald patches.

Rethink your marketing

Many individuals, who have pets or are planning to buy them, will not apply for homes that are not seen as “pet friendly.” Therefore, it may be a good idea to market toward pet owners or those who may purchase a pet. Add the term “pet friendly” to your listing, and while you should minimize the presence of your pet, you don’t need to erase it entirely. Hide or replace worn pet toys with new ones. Make sure that, if the food and water bowls look good, that they are cleaned properly. If they are too dingy for a good scrubbing to save, replace them with new ones. If you have someone stopping by to look at the property, and you can’t remove your pet from your home, make sure they smell and look nice, crated or confined to one area where they will not disturb your buyer.

Eliminate smells

Just as there shouldn’t be a visual presence of your pet about your home, there should not be an olfactory one either. The best approach you can take as a pet owner is to rid your home of pet smells completely. Just because you no longer smell them does not mean they don’t exist.

To remove pet odor from carpeting, there are few proven techniques. Perhaps the only truly effective measure is to purchase an enzymatic-based pet odor remover from your local pet supply store. These cleaners are composed of natural enzymes that eat away at the natural materials that cause urine smells in the first place.

Board your pet

When you have an open house to showcase your home, it will be best if your pet is not present at all as you cannot predict who will show up. A buyer may love the idea of pets, but another may see a pet as a nuisance and immediately be turned off. If you are showing to an individual with last-minute notice, you may not be able to get rid of your furry (or scaled or feathery) little one, but if you have the opportunity, do try to either have a friend take your pet for the day. If a realtor is coming over last minute, and if you can leave the house, take the pet out yourself during the viewing or board your pet. It will make everyone’s life easier.

You want your house to sell as quickly as possible and being a pet owner can make that harder. But if you follow the steps above, you may see better results. Cleaning up and purchasing new pet-related items may seem like a hassle, but it may be worth it in the end.

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Spring is Near, Prices are UP UP UP

Wow, Spring 2017 is right around the corner.  Home prices have gone up a bit and buyers are out early with the mild weather we have been having.

Have you considered selling your home?  This is a great time to do a little spring cleaning and get that home on the market.  Sellers often ask, “when is the best time to list my home?”  Now, is the answer.  Early March is the perfect time to get things going and start packing!

Want to know what your home might be worth?  Call for a free market analysis and get the knowledge of a professional real estate agent.  I can help you navigate all the things that will make your move a successful and pleasant experience!

Take the first step – spring is near!

Selling a Water Front Home in the Winter

What is the good wisdom about listing and selling a water front home in the winter months?  Although there are many that will say to take it off market during that time, I am not one of them.

First of all, we are talking about water front homes mostly.  These homes tend to get quite a bit of activity during the winter months.  People have time to look around at different lake front areas and shop for homes.  The late winter and early spring period have people shopping to get something in time for summer.

People are also getting savvy about the time it takes to purchase a home.  Most buyers are aware of mortgage times at or around the four to six-week time frame.  So, in order to have a summer home ready to go by May, people are shopping in February and March.

I think it is wise to have a home on market through the winter months.  With inventory at a low during that time, it is a better chance to sell.  Guard your home with rugs, shoe covers, etc. and keep it on the market.  Give it a good chance to get it sold!





Selling a Home in Winter

Selling a home can be frustrating in the winter market.  While there are advantages to having a home on the market through the winter, there could also be disadvantages.  What works best for you as a seller, is a very personal decision.  Let your real estate agent help you sort out whether to keep your home on the market through the winter.

Here are a few advantages to keeping your home on the market:

  1.  There are less homes on the market making inventory low.  You have a better chance of being noticed when there is less inventory.
  2. Buyers looking in the winter months are serious buyers.  You have a better chance of selling when the buyers are looking through the snowy season.
  3. Prices can be a bit higher because of low inventory bring in a sales price closer to your list price.

The disadvantages can be downplayed by keeping a good attitude about your move.

  1.  Moving in the winter is not fun – but with a little research you can find a good moving company and save yourself a lot of work.  Companies are looking for work in the winter and offer deals to you.
  2. Keeping the way clear of snow.  Yes, this is especially important for the winter snowbirds. 2Hire a company to keep your drive clear of snow.  This makes it easier to get in for showings and gives the buyer the message that you care about your home.
  3. Buyers are looking for deals, deals, deals.  They sometimes want to offer lower prices thinking that you are desperate to sell.  This is not always the case, so be strong during negotiation if you have a good product.
It’s only a few short months and we will be talking about spring and summer.  You can make it though the winter with an agent that is resourceful and able to help you out with services needed during the winter months.  Hopefully, by spring you will see a big SOLD sign on it.
1 MainFor more information on this beautiful winter home for sale – click on the photo above.

Honesty in Real Estate – by Kathleen Adams

Can you honestly say your are always honest in everything you do?  Probably not, sadly.  We all have times when we think a little white lie is okay to tell.  If it serves a good purpose, perhaps.

For all time, real estate agents have had the “dishonesty” stigma attached to their profession.  While it may be true for some – after all we are human – it doesn’t hold true for all.  I know how important it is to be honest with my clients as well as my customers.  It should be at the core of our being to have integrity as a foundation in everything we do.  This is the road that is paved for us.  The other road sure has it’s bumps!

Lately, with the heat-up in the market, I have witnessed a lot of dishonesty on the part of buyers.  Particularly buyers from outside the area.  This is what I have witnessed going on of late.  A buyer comes in from out of town and they dupe the listing agent into believing they do not have an agent; and then – they “write an offer with their agent” – an out of town agent that didn’t bother to show up with their client to show the property.

This is really disturbing to me on many levels.  First, that the “agent” would not have the courtesy to call and ask me to show for their client because they cannot; and second, because the buyer has shown that dishonesty is in their character.  The next step of course is negotiation and getting through a closing with people who are willing to say/do anything to gain for themselves.  We all know this as greed.

How wonderful it would be to have honesty be the one character trait people would strive for in all that they do.  It would really make the real estate transaction much better in every way.  The next time someone tells me they don’t trust real estate agents – I may have to give them a dose of reality.

In contrast, last week I had an agent from out of area call and ask me if I could show one of my properties to their client.  He was on vacation when they called him to see this property.  I gladly showed it to his client – and was rewarded with a purchase agreement – cash offer!  We are getting through the closing process and everything is going quite smooth.  How nice to deal with honest people all around!


Is It a Seller’s Market Yet? by Kathleen Adams, Canadian Lakes Homes

Well, we see the tides changing.  We are coming into a seller’s market in Canadian Lakes.  While it is still at the transition point, we see less inventory and more multiple offers.  All signs lead to the beginnings of a seller’s market.

Caution – don’t overprice your home just yet.  It is going to take a bit of time for all of this to digest.  Remember just a few short years ago, sellers would not believe that the market prices were going “that low”.  Well they did – and they were – we just didn’t want to believe it.  It took time for sellers to get on the right track and lower their prices.  We will most likely see this happening the other way around now.  Buyers will not believe that prices are truly going up and they will not be able to buy a home without a bidding war.  So, make it count – that first offer that is.  Make it good so that you are the best in the bunch trying to buy that home!  Success will be with those that truly know what the market is doing.

Yes indeed – we are coming into a seller’s market!

See my current inventory – click here!

Winter Home Buying. by Kathleen Adams, Canadian Lakes Homes Blog

Winter home buying can be perplexing for both buyer and seller, especially in the north.  When the weather turns and temperatures are freezing the ground, the snow is up to your knees, and it is not fun to tramp through the elements to shop for homes, it can be trying.

Working in a climate that brings snow, cold temperatures and homes that are seasonal, it has many challenges for the Realtor, the buyer and the seller.  But, working through the challenges can be rewarding.

Sellers often think that there are no buyers in the winter and take their homes off the market.  This is simply not true, there is always someone looking for a home.   Seller on the market through winter may just be rewarded with a buyer.

When we had little kids and took them to the mountains to ski, we always advised them to dress in layers and take extra gloves.  You can always strip down if you get too hot, we would tell them.  This is the same advice I have for buyers looking in snowy northern Michigan for homes.  Buyers are often coming from climates that are not as severe and are met with a surprise when they have to trudge through snow knee deep and look at a home with little to no heat.  Be prepared for all things when looking at homes in the winter months.  Bring boots, hats, gloves, etc.

Sellers find another challenge when they actually have an offer presented to them in the winter.  If it is a summer home, they are often out of town during the winter months and need to deal with things from a distance.  Their home may be winterized and they will now need to deal with opening it up for inspections and then re-winterizing it until closing.  They may not want people coming through the home with snow.  They may not want to have the driveway plowed and add an additional expense.

Seller can work with their Realtor to handle snow plowing and to protect their homes.

I find that buyers generally flexible when it comes to inspections.  Trying to coordinate things to avoid de-winterizing more than once, etc. can be done.  Depend on the Realtor to make sure things get done to eliminate extra costs.

Buyers sometime take a risk buying in the winter.  For instance, a waterfront home be a risky buy because you really cannot see what the waterfront is like.  The Realtor should be able to come up with photos from the seller to rest assure the buyer as to the condition of the waterfront.  Another challenge is inspections of the well and septic systems.  This can not always be done in the winter.  If the septic inspector cannot break ground to access the system, inspection has to be postponed or waived.  A seller that has records of all septic inspections can be helpful.  These records sometimes serve the purpose for the buyer.  Keep those systems in good condition with regular checkups and keep the records handy.

These are just a few examples of winter challenges when buying or selling a home.  They are not monumental, but a bit more work versus summer season selling.  It can be done if the seller, buyer and Realtor all work as a team to – get it sold!



Shopping for a New Home? by Kathleen Adams, Canadian Lakes Homes

While many our out doing their holiday shopping – you just might be shopping for a new home.  What a great time of year to find a good deal on a home.

We have a great selection of beautiful homes in Canadian Lakes to choose from.  This community,  located in the west central area of Michigan, offers a wide range of activities and amenities.  There is something for everyone at Canadian Lakes.  Some of the amenities include, golf, tennis, pickle ball, clubs – every type of club from cards to book clubs and more – swimming and fitness, restaurants, and of course our beautiful lakes.  We have lakes that are all-sports, lakes that are no-wake that offer quiet living and beaches that are perfect for swimming.

Come and see what we are all about in Canadian Lakes, Michigan.  I give tours of the area when you visit.  And, if you are looking for information – I can get that to you as well.  Be sure to shop around my website to find homes that are available in Canadian Lakes.  You will love it here!

November Newsletter

The November newsletter is out!  Here is an excerpt from this month: 

New things are going on around Canadian Lakes this fall –

Sadly, the Blue Cow is leaving their management of the Mayfair Restaurant at the end of October.  The Mayfair Restaurant will be looking for a new restaurant group to take over by spring.  We still have Tullymore, The Blue Lake Tavern, The Sweet Shop Mancino’s Pizza and Grinders and Antlers Restaurant serving food and drink!  Visit one of these restaurants for a great meal. 

Homes sales were good this year. There were 79 homes sold this year with an average size of 1,500 sf and an average sales price of $135,000. Highest priced home sold was $377,500. We are seeing a lot of waterfront buyers. Gone away are the golf course buyers. I am not sure what is going on with that! The National Association of Realtors reports that today’s buyer is looking for urban living! Well, we have just as much to offer here at Canadian Lakes with golf, fitness, restaurants, tennis, walking and biking paths and more.

Other Lake Front Areas

Sales around the lakes were favorable this year. Fifty nine homes sold with waterfront with 1,475 average square feet and $205,620 average sales price. The highest priced home sold was $1,375,000 on the Tri-Lakes. Here are the sold stats around the lakes:

Here are the sold stats around the lakes:







Horsehead 8 $203,125 1332sf 158
Lake Mecosta 3 $779,333 3264sf 245
Blue Lake 3 $246,000 1375sf 164
School Section 5 $171,400 1434sf 117
Round Lake 4 158,100 1171sf 229
Chippewa 4 $96,625 917sf 143

Contact Kathy for all of your Real Estate needs!

If you would like a copy of my complete November Newsletter – email me!