New Orleans, LA Real Estate News

By Lisa Heindel, New Orleans Real Estate Broker
(Crescent City Living LLC)
Are you curious about the interior of those historic Algiers Point homes?  This weekend is your opportunity to take a peek inside!  The Algiers Point Association's 34th Annual Home Tour is taking place on Saturday and Sunday, October 13-14, 2007.  A different set of homes will be on tour each day.  Saturday's tour will include a church and both historic homes and new construction with that historic look and feel, while Sunday's tour features 6 different historic homes.Ticket information$12 per day or $20 both days in advance.  $15 per day or $25 both days on site.For advance ticket sales, call (504) 322-7479 or (504) 361-1932.Saturday:  Tour starts at Mount Olivet Episcopal Church (also hosting Pasta Festival)Sunday:  Tour starts at Trinity Lutheran Church  (also hosting Oktoberfest)Nee...
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By Eric Bouler, Listening to your Needs
( Gardner Realtors, Licensed in La.)
Sometimess you find some unique conversions in an old city like New Orleans. This New Orleans Conversion that I visited this past week had the kitchen of an historic home in the New Orleans Garden District. Having eight units that surround a lush courtyard and pool that make up a rather unique courtyard with banana trees, fountains, potted tropical plants and brick walkways. What made this unit different is that it was the old kitchen of this old home. In those days the kicthens where often open areas with a large fireplace and preparation area. It often did not have walls but a roof keeping our rain off the cooks. These fireplaces were rather large because they were also used for heat in the winter which is generally short in New Orleans. The servants would take the coals and embers an...
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By Eric Bouler, Listening to your Needs
( Gardner Realtors, Licensed in La.)
A smaller New Orleans home can be called a cottage. This is a New Orleans double with a twist. It has an addition that was built in the last 50 years to give additional space for the families. A camelback is a tow story addition that is usually a nice size bedroom and bath that would have been added. The inside laundry was added with the kitchen most likely being remodeled in the rear. You still have the porch, shutters, iron work, millwork, and brick steps that were added at a later date. This one looks like a classic in the New Orleans Uptown area. You more than likelu have wide plank hardwood floors made from brages that brought trade down the Mississippi. Most of the time it was a one way trip down and the barge was sold for the wood. It was not until Mr. Fulton invented the steamsh...
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By Eric Bouler, Listening to your Needs
( Gardner Realtors, Licensed in La.)
In a weak market that are several numbers that you should know as a buyer. How long has the property been listed and what did the seller pay for the property. if the sale is a recent purchase it will give you some insite as to the present value if it has just been maintained. If the buy was made in the last 5 years we generally know how much homes have gone up. In this market the prices have been flat since the begginning of 2005. In 2004 prices in some areas when up 8-9% for that year and less for 2003. You also have to figure if they got a good deal or not. If they overpaid it gets harder to work a deal. You can see if other deals have fallen through. This may mean they are really motivated for a good buyer. I have a couple of clients asking me these questions and it can give you some...
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By Lisa Heindel, New Orleans Real Estate Broker
(Crescent City Living LLC)
Aurora Riverside is a small, gated community in Algiers located next door to the Aurora Swim and Tennis Club.   Neighborhood and building covenants and restrictions have resulted in a beautiful collection of traditional New Orleans architecture incorporated into new construction homes.  Developed in the late 1990's, the area is a pocket of serenity between Gen. Meyer Avenue and the Mississippi River levee.  Two private streets make up the subdivision:  Admiralty Court and Navigation Court.  Old style street lamps light the way at night.  Many of the large homes were positioned to take advantage of the view of the river and the ships passing both day and night.Here's a market snapshot of the area:Active Listings1 home on market:  $449,000 2007 Sales Activity2 homes soldHigh sales price: ...
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By Eric Bouler, Listening to your Needs
( Gardner Realtors, Licensed in La.)
This is an New Orleans Historic parking meter. Before cars you had to have a place to tie up your horse. The French Quarter has few garages but there would have had to have been some stables nearby. No wonder the gardens grew well in this area of town, what did they do with the by-products of your mount in the past. Most of these must be for the tourist but its a nice touch. I would assume that you would also have a valet service for the stable, but without cell phones you may just have a wakeup call as the church bells were rung at the St. Louis Catherdal in Jackson Square around the corner. It was not always Jackson Square, because Andrew Jackson was not here until 1814.                              
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By Eric Bouler, Listening to your Needs
( Gardner Realtors, Licensed in La.)
The Cotton Mill condos in the New Orleans Warehouse District is a great starting place for a loft or a small condo. The exposed brick walls, very large windows,20 foot ceilings give you that true Warehouse look. There are currently several nicely priced units availiable. This is the time of year to think about buying. In the Spring these units are very popular. Selling these every month, the fall is the best time to buy. You can easily save $5,000 over what you would pay later in the year. Less people are looking right now and that is to your bennefit. The interest rates are down and Lousiana State Bond Money is still availiable for rrates under 6%.The units are also great places for second homes. Just lock the door and leave. Its all in the timing and this tends to happen every year. M...
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By Eric Bouler, Listening to your Needs
( Gardner Realtors, Licensed in La.)
 When real estate slows tkae your camera with you. I shot this nice home in Uptown New Orleans yesterday. Its a classic home with most of the things that make them a thing of beauty in my eyes. The porches, the shutters, the tropical plants, the wood work of yesterday, the high ceilings and large windows that were needed before a/c. The iron fences are great for viewing for the owners and the passers by like myself. Just chosen at random while I was walking somewhere.                                                                   
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By Eric Bouler, Listening to your Needs
( Gardner Realtors, Licensed in La.)
    Its always good to know what your cost are when you are buying a condo in the New Orleans Market. People always ask so I have outlined the normal cost that usually see. It will vary by lender and less so by the Title Company. New Orleans Condos website is full of the local tips that you will find elsewhere.                          Your Closing Cost on a Condo By Eric BoulerBuyers  Buyer's Cost for a Louisiana CondoEach state and Parish are going to have some variations of fees and charges. It is possible to close in Louisiana in a week. Most people will allow themselves about 30-45 days to get everything done. Your lender should give you a truth in lending statement. Always check it over. As a realtor I can point out mistakes and fill in the exact amounts once the property is ident...
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By Lisa Heindel, New Orleans Real Estate Broker
(Crescent City Living LLC)
  Algiers Point Algiers Point is the second oldest neighborhood in New Orleans (the French Quarter being the oldest).   Tucked into the bend of the Mississippi River, it is the only portion of the City of New Orleans located on the West Bank of the river. There is quick and convenient access to downtown and the French Quarter via the Canal St/Algiers Ferry. The Point is home to many locally owned businesses such as the Rosetree Blown Glass Studio and Gallery, Aunt Lenie's Café & Market, Crown and Anchor English Pub, Old Point Bar and Dry Dock Bar & Café.  There are also several bed & breakfasts located in the area when you are ready for a quiet weekend getaway without the hustle and bustle of downtown New Orleans.                                                                          ...
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By Lisa Heindel, New Orleans Real Estate Broker
(Crescent City Living LLC)
I recently wrote a blog about fixnola.org as an example of how you can get involved in the rebuilding of New Orleans. I have since learned about another organization that will match volunteers to the different organizations that need them.Volunteer New Orleans has a goal of matching people to opportunities in addition to encouraging local business owners to partner with them in making this happen. For example, Cox Communications has committed to allowing each of their employees to take a day off with pay to volunteer. Volunteer New Orleans is also working on creating a list of K-12 volunteer activities for local students.Check out this worthwhile organization today and find out how you can help.Photo credit: l'ennui d'ennui at flickr.com
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By Lisa Heindel, New Orleans Real Estate Broker
(Crescent City Living LLC)
Have you been wondering "What can I do to help rebuild New Orleans?" Well, there is a great new place to find out about it.  Fixnola.org is a new web site available to match volunteers with non-profit organizations throughout the Greater New Orleans area.  Volunteer opportunities are open to everyone and span the entire metropolitan region, including the parishes of Orleans, Jefferson and St. Bernard.  When visiting the website, you can choose from various activities that are geared towards your particular skills or areas of interest.  Search options include opportunities for kids, teens, seniors and groups.  This sounds like a great way for high school students to earn required service hours and help the city's recovery at the same time.  Not all projects require physical labor.  You c...
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By Lisa Heindel, New Orleans Real Estate Broker
(Crescent City Living LLC)
You want me to do what?That's the response of many sellers in the New Orleans area to the suggestion to stage their home before selling. Home staging is extremely popular in many other metropolitan areas of the United States but is relatively unknown here.  With so much competition from other homes in the real estate market, you need to make yours shine BEFORE the "For Sale" sign is ever staked into the front yard.  This is where staging comes into play.  What is home staging?Home staging is the art of preparing your home to make it look the best it can before putting it the market to be sold.  I love to watch all of those shows on HGTV...Designed to Sell, Sell this House and others.  I've learned to set a beautiful table, rearrange the furniture to bring the room a different focus and ...
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By Eric Bouler, Listening to your Needs
( Gardner Realtors, Licensed in La.)
You have to be very careful as a buyer as to the lender you choose. I would always reccommned an local lender over someone from out of town. They have talk a good game but it usually in the actions. I had a listings go the ssale this week from an out of town lender. It was 4 days late closing. Everystep was late. The buyer got charged $460 for an appraisal for a condo form an appraiser who had never been to the area. A normal cost is $350 in this market. It took 4 days to get completed, 4 more days to review by an underwritter in Oklahoma.The loan officer who was in Austin, Texas missed his fees by over a $1,000 and his taxes by $3,000. They thought they knew it all and would not ask the closing company for answers. Getting ready to close on Monday and the lender who was from Ca. had bl...
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By Lisa Heindel, New Orleans Real Estate Broker
(Crescent City Living LLC)
Bocage is a well established neighborhood in the Algiers section of New Orleans.  Conveniently located on the West Bank, off of General de Gaulle, it provides easy access to the CBD, shopping, schools and churches.  Tree lined streets provide a peaceful atmosphere for all of the residents.The market in BocageHouses are typically 3 or 4 bedrooms with a range of styles from traditional and ranch to sidewinders, with single and 2 story homes available.  Most of the homes in the area have a garage, either attached or detached.Square footage ranges from approximately 1,900 square feet to over 3,000 square feet of living areaHousing prices range from $179,000 to $245,000                          Other things to know about BocageActive homeowners association with no required HOA duesLocated in...
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By Lisa Heindel, New Orleans Real Estate Broker
(Crescent City Living LLC)
We had a terrible thunderstorm here in New Orleans yesterday.  Huge lightning flashes, booming thunder, pouring rain...sounded like the sky was falling.  It brought to mind my very first listing, when I was a brand spanking sparkly new agent. I was following the roadmap in our brokerage for all rookie agents, which included sending out announcements to everybody I knew to let them know I was now a Realtor®, capital R.  Lo and behold, I got my first listing from this mailing!  A couple who were friends of my mom's (they did say mail to everyone) had a rental house they wanted to sell and called me to list it.  Holy cow...what do I do now??  Well, list it, of course.  Plow through the best I can with my limited (i.e. non-existent) experience and boundless enthusiasm.Within a couple of mon...
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By Lisa Heindel, New Orleans Real Estate Broker
(Crescent City Living LLC)
I had only been an agent for a couple of years when some friends of mine, Sarah and Gregg, decided to leave Algiers, on the West Bank of New Orleans, and move to the Mississippi Gulf Coast.  Gregg had just received his teaching license and a job offer with a school near his extended family that would allow him to work in his chosen field and subject.  Although they owned their home, they had never actually been a "home buyer" since the property was inherited from Gregg's parents.  They were dream sellers, doing almost everything asked of them during the marketing of their home, after the inspections and getting ready for the closing.  Priced right, their house sold in about 2 weeks and they moved on to start a new chapter of their lives with their 2 daughters in Mississippi.  I checked ...
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By Lisa Heindel, New Orleans Real Estate Broker
(Crescent City Living LLC)
An open letter to the owners and management of Breaux Mart grocery stores:I want my Breaux Mart back.  I miss you here in Algiers.   I miss seeing Miss Doris at the checkout stand and Mr. Nick rounding up buggies and bagging groceries.  I miss everyone knowing when I was having a party by the items in my shopping basket.  I miss that sometimes daily interaction with the folks who live close to me when we meet up on the dairy aisle or in the produce section.  I miss crawfish dip from the deli section.  I miss having a locally owned business to shop at within 2 minutes of my house (selfish, but true).Those who know me are aware that I spend a lot of time "running to the store".  I almost never have what I think I want or need to cook dinner.  I am the mom who waits until the morning to gr...
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By Lisa Heindel, New Orleans Real Estate Broker
(Crescent City Living LLC)
Louisiana SPCA now located in AlgiersSchool is back in session and as I was driving through Algiers yesterday, I noticed the fabulous sign that the Louisiana SPCA has at their new location at 1700 Mardi Gras Blvd.  Just had to stop and take a picture of it to share with everyone.  Take the time to visit their website and find out the different ways you can volunteer or make a donation tohelp support this local organization with all of the good work they do.  Looking for a 4 legged addition to your family?  Please consider one of the "Adoptables" that are patiently waiting for a new, loving family.If you already have a pet, please be sure he or she is spayed or neutered..in the words of Bob Barker, "Help control the pet population".Until next time...Lisa Heindel    Your West Bank Real Es...
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