Real Estate Blog



Unless you wheel and deal in the financial markets, the home purchase agreement is one of the most important contracts you’ll ever put your signature to. Today we take a look at some of the parts of the agreement you’ll want to get to know.

Earnest Money Deposit

Line 3 of the purchase agreement here in the Twin Cities deals with the amount of money you’ll be putting down as an earnest money deposit. Don’t confuse this with the down payment, which is a lender requirement.

The earnest money deposit shows the seller that you are earnest about buying the home. In Minnesota the deposit typically amounts to 1 percent of the purchase price of the home and it is kept in the broker’s trust account; in this case it will be held with Edina

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Although it may not seem like it while you’re knee-deep in the North Oaks house-hunting process, the day will come when you find the perfect home and decide to make an offer to purchase. Before you commit, there are a few things to consider:

  • The average monthly utility bills and maintenance costs may push your budget over the limit if you are buying at the top of your approval range.
  • Is the house priced properly? I’m happy to crunch the numbers to determine the home’s current market value and the percentage of list price that homeowners are realizing in the current market. This way, you’ll have a better idea on how much to offer.
  • Is the home located in a floodplain? If it is, your lender will most likely require you to buy flood
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Home Selling

There are several reasons leading to a low appraisal. You shouldn’t be surprised as it can happen during a hot, cold or neutral market. Usually it is caused by artificially inflated prices contributed by several offers and deteriorating market value caused by low demand.

There are a few solutions you can use when a low appraisal becomes an issue. Here’s what you should consider.

Buyer Pays the Difference

If the low appraisal affects the loan-to-value ratio, the lender will not offer the full amount of loan to the buyer. Not to say that the lender will completely reject the loan offer, but the loan amount will be based on the agreed loan-to-value ratio on the appraisal. Therefore, if the seller won't lower the price and the buyer wishes to

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In a little over one month, North Oaks’ children will be going back to school (first day of school is September 8). If you’re new to the area and have elementary school-aged children they will attend Turtle Lake Elementary, in the Mounds View Public Schools, ISD 621.

This district is one of 10 that carries the distinction of teaching the most National Merit Scholarship semifinalists.

Turtle Lake Elementary, which is located in Shoreview, serves 931 students in grades K through 5. The school employs 55 full-time teachers, giving it a student/teacher ratio of almost 18:1.

Special Programs

Turtle Lake Elementary School offers special education classes and programs for English language learners. It also offers the High Performance program for

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When you first consider selling your North Oaks home you’ll probably experience an onslaught of questions. “Where to start?” typically tops the list.

While contacting a real estate agent is an important step, it’s not the first one you should take. Read on to learn what you need to do so that you and your agent can intelligently set a price for your North Oaks home.

Gather up your Loan Documents

That day you sat at the closing table and were handed the keys to your present home may seem like some far off memory. You’ll need to dig up your loan documents to refresh that memory and determine the following:

  •        Who else is on the title?
  •        Does the lender require a pre-payment penalty?
  •        Can the loan be assumed by a
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Chicken Wings - Image Credit:

Meister's Bar & Grill has been serving the Shoreview, Minnesota community German American inspired food and beer since 2007. Before heading over here for your next meal, read on to learn more about what to expect and everything this bar and grill has to offer you.


There are daily food specials and other specials change throughout the year, so definably ask your bartender or server for the latest special. If you do go on the first Friday of the month though, the prime rib meal is the nightly special for $16.95, which includes a soup or salad and a roll.

Every Friday night, they have an all you can eat fish fry. Popular favorites at Meister's include the bacon and cheese potato skins, which are piled high with melted cheese and bacon bits

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No other real estate market in the Twin Cities compares to North Oaks’. We’re a completely different breed, in many ways. The latest MLS statistics were just released and they only serve to enforce that fact.

New Listings

If we were to graph the new listing metrics over the past few months it would look a bit like a rollercoaster ride. While new listings were up in May, a whopping 214 percent, in June they went down 10 percent. We cautioned buyers last month not to get too optimistic because in the North Oaks real estate market, one never knows what will happen.

Median Sales Price

In May, the median sales price for a North Oaks home tumbled more than 10.5 percent. In June, the price went up more than 15 percent over June 2014’s to

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Egg Rolls - Image Credit:

Red Ginger China Bistro is a great spot to go if you want to enjoy authentic Chinese dishes. They provide a laid back and friendly atmosphere with excellent service. The portions are always generous and the prices are reasonable.

At Red Ginger, you will find dishes with the freshest ingredients and oils with no trans fats. Both dine in and carry out options are available, along with a lunch buffet. Here's what you can expect when you dine at Red Ginger China Bistro.

The Menu

The menu is split into a dine-in and take-out option. However, both are very similar. Some of the top choices on the menu include:

  • Egg Rolls
  • Red Ginger Wings
  • Chicken Lettuce Wrap
  • Cream Cheese Puffs
  • Wonton Soup
  • Seafood Tofu Soup
  • Chicken Almond Ding
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North Oaks vegetable gardens still have lots of time to produce yummy, home-grown vegetables. In fact, some of our favorites can be planted now for harvest in fall. Our first frost date in North Oaks is September 20, so use that date when calculating when to plant late-season vegetables.

Here are just a few vegetables you can put in the ground now (“days” refers to days to maturity):

  • Bush beans – 45 to 60 days
  • Collard greens – 40 to 65 days
  • Leaf lettuce – 40 to 60 days
  • Mustard greens – 30 to 40 days
  • Radish – 30 to 60 days
  • Spinach – 35 to 45 days
  • Swiss chard – 40 to 60 days

Out of the aforementioned crops, only bush beans will be killed by a frost and collard greens and kale are the most cold-hardy, surviving

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Hot weather is on tap for the fourth of July weekend and our friends a Petfinders want to remind all of us about how deadly hot the interior of a car can get. Don't leave your pets, or kids, alone in the car.



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