Tag Archives: twin cities

It’s Getting Hot, Hot, Hot!

The Twin Cities is a place of extremes and nothing illustrates this like the weather does. I was planning on blogging about senior housing or deciding what kind of pet to get but I couldn’t even think straight with all this heat and humidity. When I walked outside to get something from my car, and was assaulted by weather that was a RECORD BREAKING 103 degrees F. It was the 6th hottest MSP temp. since 1871. Come on, that is just gross. There is nothing like walking into the office for a day of work feeling like you just trekked through a hot tub…fully clothed. It’s not even the heat that is bothersome to me, it’s the constant sticky layer that coats my skin and makes my clothes cling to me. If I wanted to feel sweaty all the time, I would have been a professional athlete or at least join a gym.

I even broke out the ugly AC unit that has all the tubes sticking out the window. I usually try to refrain from using ‘The Beast‘ because it the least aesthetically pleasing thing I have ever beheld, but yesterday I just couldn’t take it no mo’. People walking outside may look up at my bedroom window and think “Oh, gross. Look at all those ugly tubes coming out the window”, and at first, that might bother me. But then I would stop and remember not to put value on the words of someone crazy enough to be going for a walk in 103 degree weather.

My house is a historic home and does not have central air conditioning so I have to use ‘The Beast’ and you know what? I’m fine with that. She does a great job of keeping me cool in the summer and from what I can tell, this summer I’m gonna need it. For all those out there that are in the boat with me and have to use portable AC units or window units, fret not. If you aren’t trying to sell your house, it’s not worth baking alive in your own home. If you are trying to sell your house, just put the units in the areas that aren’t as visible from the road or driveway. You can also invest in an AC unit that doesn’t have to be in a window. These can be kind of pricey though, so whatever you want to spend.

For now, some words of wisdom:

Buckle up Twin Cities, it’s going to be a long, hot summer.

What Big Eyes You Have…Home Security

Most modern houses today are equipped with security systems designed to keep you and your family safe. They are designed to alert you if there is poisonous gas, a fire or an intruder. From what I have gathered, the Minneapolis and St. Paul area’s police force are pretty open with the public on what is going on. For those out there that believe they aren’t doing enough, you must understand that for some cases (I’m assuming the really bad ones) the police department can’t just give out the details willy nilly. There are a lot of variables in a crime and if they shared some of the more intimate ones with the public and let them become common knowledge, it wouldn’t help in the solving of the crimes.

A home security system not only is a sound investment, it also gives a home owner peace of mind to know that when they leave for work or go out of town, their belongings and livelihood are safe. Another good idea for those who want don’t want to be a victim of a burglary, is the things you can do to the outside of your house. http://www.providerofchoice.net/ some examples of precautions you can take. They state that you need to:

“Think like a burglar: 

First drive by your home checking for visibility of doors and windows. Second walk around the home looking for possible ways a burglar might break in. Burglars like areas that would conceal them from neighbors and passing vehicles. Make notes of areas you find that are potentials for making your home vulnerable to a burglary. Look at these areas from a burglars point of view and take the required steps to solve the security problem.”

They also give a link to ways you can improve your home security without spending more money than you would like. That link can be found here:

http://www.providerofchoice.net/secure-your-home.htm

About.com has a great article on Twin Cities neighborhoods and how to find out how safe yours is. Their article can be found by following this link:

http://minneapolis.about.com/od/househome/tp/neighborhoodsafety.-0FZ.htm

I’m a fan of hiding my stuff like some sort of OCD squirrel, so anyone who ever wanted to break into my place had better have a long time to look around. They might also find some unpleasant surprises waiting for them…booby-trapping should have been on the list. Hire a war veteran to secure your house and yard. I like that idea. Anyways, I hope this has helped anyone out there with questions on home security and for those people out there who want to keep the bad guys out for the price of two grains of rice and a chicken, just get a fake security sticker and some motion sensing lights for outside the house…burglars hate that.

Bring on the Sun

Today is Friday. Yes, the six letter magical word that gets children and adults alike, excited about the next two days. We have been conditioned to look forward to this day of the week since we were young, and now with the approaching warm weather, the weekend means bonfires, flip flops, fishing, barbecues, days at the lake and all around quality outdoor time in great weather.

In the land of 10,000 lakes, the Twin Cities boasts some of the most beautiful lakes and parks in the state. The Chain of Lakes is a part of the Grand Rounds in Minneapolis and has a 13.3 mile long trail around it the is excellent for biking, walking or jogging. The Grand Rounds itself is a system of trails, paths and roadways that come together to make a loop around the city approximately 50 miles long. This beautifully urban scenery is perfect for those who enjoy a long bike ride or walk. For those less ambitious folks, there are parts that are also made for vehicles.

The informational website for these places can be found here:

http://www.minneapolisparks.org/default.asp?PageID=71

With so many beautiful choices, who wouldn’t want to spend some time outdoors this summer?

The Speed of Change

It’s a beautiful day. A few wispy clouds are in the sky, and the birds are a churpin’. For some, though, this beautiful day is greatly diminished by the sounds and smells of men and women filling potholes and building roads and bridges. Not to mention the extended ride into work. Yes, we made it through another Minnesota winter, only to be greeted by construction season.

As far as I have been able to find, the Twin Cities has about 79 projects lined up for this spring and summer. While a few of these are already completed, this just covers the plans for road construction. There is a complete list of all the projects, costs ranging from several thousand dollars to a couple hundred million over the course of a few years, that can be found here:

http://www.dot.state.mn.us/construction/2011/lists/2011metro.pdf

While these projects may seem inconvenient and never-ending, they do better our community in the long term. When businesses look for places to settle, they usually want high-traffic areas with a good infrastructure. With better roads that allow for more traffic, they are getting exactly that.

These projects also help stimulate the economy with the money being spent for labor and materials. This is particularly true if the work force involved is local. Overall, the whole scenario is really a little-picture / big-picture deal. We may not see the advantages when we are trying to get home at the speed of a turtle crawling through peanut butter, but when our local businesses and community continue thriving, I’m sure most of us will understand the importance of these projects just a little bit better.

Other informational cites:

http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/programadmin/contracts/price.cfm

http://www.dot.state.mn.us/construction/

Average Home Sale – Twin Cities

I recently read an article on Trulia that gave a summary of the average home sale in St. Paul, MN. While there was good news in the article (the listing price of the average home is up 1.4%), there is definite room for improvement.  The article can be found here:

http://www.trulia.com/real_estate/Saint_Paul-Minnesota/

As a city, St. Paul is ranked as one of the most affordable cities in America according to Forbes.com. Their article states that

At $249,000, the current median asking price for homes in Minneapolis-St.  Paul remains higher than those of its neighbors on our list. The Twin Cities make up for it in quality of life, touting low unemployment rates and a                   healthy cost of living vs. salary.

“Minneapolis-St. Paul has very strong institutions of medical research and higher education, a highly educated population and a desirable amenity base,” says Stuart Gabriel, director of the Ziman Center for real estate at the University of California Los Angeles.

“Minneapolis has weathered the downturn better than most places and its            prospects continue to look relatively bright,” says Gabriel, who has           researched the quality of life as it relates to real estate economics.

The entire article can be found here:

http://realestate.yahoo.com/promo/the-most-affordable-cities-in-america.html

Team Boo, LLC and High Pointe Realty, Inc. have been in the top 2% of realtors in the Twin Cities and if you are looking for a home, they would be the people to call. If you have any questions, please email jimboo@teamboo.com or call 651 231 3111 and they will be happy to help you with all of your real estate needs from first time home buyers to avoiding foreclosure.