Friday, December 30, 2011

What's Ahead for Home Prices in 2012

The median home price in the U.S. has plunged nearly 40% in a little over five years, but the worst is definitely over: The market has finally wrung out the last excess valuations born of the housing bubble. Before you break out the party hats, note that this doesn't mean prices across the nation are poised to rebound anytime soon. Alex Villacorta, director of research and analytics at Clear Capital, a provider of real estate data and analytics, says the housing market is in a suspended state, with positive and negative factors offsetting one another. But he doesn't expect another free fall in prices, assuming things are left to work themselves out and there are no further shocks to the economy.

Houses haven't been this affordable since appliances came in harvest gold or avocado green. The benchmark of affordability -- the ratio of median home price to median family income -- has fallen to 2.6, below the historical ratio of 2.9, says Stiff. Another measure, the percentage of monthly family income consumed by a mortgage payment (principal and interest, using a mortgage rate of 4.1%), is 12% nationally, the lowest since 1971.

Theoretically, low rates should help push buyers to act. The average interest rate on 30-year fixed mortgages fell to 3.94% in the first week of October 2011, according to Freddie Mac. The past couple of years predictions that rates would rise were based on the premise that the economy would improve, says Guy Cecala, publisher of Inside Mortgage Finance, an industry publication. As long as the economy remains stagnant, unemployment remains high, and the housing market is in the toilet, rates will remain near historic lows, he says. At least for the first part of 2012, he adds, rates should hover between 4% and 5%.

Other positive signs: Existing home sales increased during the summer and early fall of 2011, according to the National Association of Realtors, after a deep slump following the expiration of the first-time home buyer tax credit. Although the inventory of homes on the market and in foreclosure remains high, a lull in home building over the past three years is gradually easing the surplus.

The lure of affordability and low mortgage rates hasn't increased buyer demand as much as one might expect. Some would-be buyers can't get a mortgage, given lenders stiffer requirements. Many more are hesitant to pull the trigger on a home purchase for fear that home prices will continue to fall or that their job prospects are uncertain. Although the recession has technically ended, the economy doesn't feel better to many.

The dark cloud of foreclosures still hangs over the housing market. The pace of foreclosures has slowed as lenders, loan servicers and regulators have sorted out paperwork and procedures in the wake of the robo-signing controversy that emerged a year ago. But RealtyTrac, which monitors the foreclosure market, says that foreclosure filings have begun to ramp back up.

Bank-owned foreclosures sell for an average discount of one-third off the per-square-foot price of conventional homes for sale, according to RealtyTrac. Buyers who want to snag a bargain on a distressed property will face competition from investors, and the biggest bargains may require a lot of work. Short sales, or homes sold with lenders permission for less than their owners owe on their mortgages, have also grown in number. Lenders take an average of 16 weeks to sign off on a short sale, so patience is imperative.

Full Article can be found by visiting Kiplinger.com

Thursday, December 29, 2011

2012 New Year Celebration in Grand Rapids, Michigan

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) - There are plenty of events all around West Michigan this year for New Year's Eve.

One of the largest will be the 105.3 Hot FM Hot New Years Eve Party in downtown Grand Rapids.

This year the concert stage has been moved from Rosa Parks Circle to Monroe Avenue between Louis and Pearl streets.

Monroe Avenue will be closed between Louis St. and Pearl St. starting at 10 a.m. Saturday and will remain closed until around 1 p.m. Sunday afternoon.

The concert will get started around 6:30 p.m. and will last through the night.

This year acts include Downtown Fiction, The Ready Set, DJ Curtis Avison & DJ Justin Kung and The Romantics.

Already most downtown hotels are booked for the night.

According to their reservation website the JW, Holiday Inn, City Flats, and Courtyard are all booked New Year's Eve night.

The Amway Grand Plaza Hotel's website does show rooms are still available but prices are around $280 including taxes.

The Radisson just outside of downtown Grand Rapids also has rooms available but only about 10 as of 7:00 a.m. Thursday.

Storm Team 8 said that temperatures should be in the upper 30's and it will be breezy.

Last year when the ball dropped in Grand Rapids temperatures were in the mid 50's.

There are several other events throughout West Michigan as well.

-- There will be fireworks at midnight over the harbor (Saugatuck Bay) in Saugatuck.

-- The Double JJ Ranch in Rothbury will have a balloon and beach ball drop at midnight, among a number of other events at the resort.

Visit WoodTv8.com for more information.

Hot New Year's Eve Party 2012

Lineup: The Romantics, The Ready Set, The Downtown Fiction
New: Stage is going to be set up on Monroe Ave between Pearl and Louis and ice skating will be open. Local band will open and will be chosen by the public.
----
The 2012 Hot New Year's Eve Party brought to you by Fifth Third Bank is almost here!
What's new this year? The Davenport University Concert Stage is moving from Rosa Parks Circle to Monroe Avenue, between Pearl Street and Louis Street.

The Bud Light Happy Hour Concert Line-up:

6:30pm - 105.3 HOT-FM West Michigan Band Contest Winner (check back for details)
7:15pm - Downtown Fiction
8:15pm - The Ready Set
9:30pm - DJ Curtis Avison & DJ Justin Kung
10:45pm - The Romantics
Midnight - New Year's Eve Ball Drop powered by Consumers Energy
12:02am - Encore performance by The Romantics

Warm your bones inside the large warming tent on Louis Street provided by Consumers Energy.

You will be able to get an up-close picture of your favorite artist courtesy of the J&H Family Stores Photo Lane. Just go to any of the West Michigan J&H Family Stores location after December 22 to pick up your photo lane wristband. Click here for a list of locations.
Thank you to all the sponsors who make this event possible: Fifth Third Bank, Bud Light, Consumers Energy, Davenport University, McDonald's, J&H Family Stores, Rockford Construction, Westmaas Electric, and Corporate Sound.

For more info visit GRNow.com

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

NEW Price: 1276 Waukazoo Dr. Holland, MI. MLS# 11066012. Lake Macatawa Waterfront Now $979,000. Call Andrea Crossman Group today for more information 616-355-6387 or visit: http://www.waterfront-luxuryhomes.com/

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Real Estate Market Graphs

The graph below shows the median new house price vs. the median household income from 1967 to 2010.

The next graph shows the percentage difference between the median new home prices from 1987 to 1999.


Wednesday, December 21, 2011

NEW Price: 5894 South Shore Dr. Whitehall, MI. MLS# 11013755. White Lake Waterfront Now $799,900. Call Andrea Crossman Group today for more information 616-355-6387 or visit: http://www.waterfront-luxuryhomes.com/

Thursday, December 15, 2011

The Happenings in Holland, MI

This weekend in Holland, MI there are many wonderful Christmas activities. You can visit Santa at Home & Company in Downtown Holland.

Stop by the Critter Barn to see some cute fuzzy animals in the live Nativity going on nightly until the new year. The cost is: $5 per person, $20 maximum per family. The Critter Barn is closed on Sundays,Christmas Eve and Christmas Day and December 26. Hours: M-Th: December 5-8 and December 12-15, 9-5:30pm Fridays/Saturdays: December 9/10 & 16/17 9am-8pm M-F: December 19-23 9am-8pm Tu-Th: December 27-29 9am-8pm

 “The Promise,” a holiday season tradition for many in the Lakeshore area, weaves the Christmas story together using scripture and Christmas music with classical and contemporary ballet.
"The Promise" Dates and Times Days:
Friday, December 16 • 7 pm
Saturday, December 17 • 2 pm and 7 pm
Sunday, December 18 • 2 pm and 7 pm
Tuesday, December 20 • 7 pm


Urban Herd Run on December 20 from 5:45 PM - 6:45 PM. Join the weekly run every Tuesday evening, beginning at Gazelle Sports. Explore Downtown Holland, make new friends, and get moving all at the same time

For more Holland area events click here

To purchase a home in this wonderful town view our listings at Waterfront-LuxuryHomes.com or call the Andrea Crossman Group at 616-355-6387
NEW Price: 1025 Rippling Brook Ct. Holland, MI. MLS# 10023772. Bay Meadows Condo Now $185,000. Call Andrea Crossman Group today for more information 616-355-6387 or visit: http://www.waterfront-luxuryhomes.com/

Monday, December 12, 2011

New Listing: 5707 Lakeshore Dr. West Olive, MI. Call Andrea Crossman Group today for more information 616-355-6387 or visit: http://www.waterfront-luxuryhomes.com/
New Listing 1902 Young Rd. Hart, MI MLS#:11064076 Call Andrea Crossman Group today for more information 616-355-6387 or visit: http://www.waterfront-luxuryhomes.com/

Friday, December 9, 2011

NEW Price: 9395 Montgomery Blvd. Pentwater, MI. MLS# 11038167. Lake Michigan Waterfront now $500,000. Call Andrea Crossman Group today for more information 616-355-6387 or visit: http://www.waterfront-luxuryhomes.com/

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

New Price on Proposed Construction or Vacant Lot: 6425 Destin Ct. Saugatuck, MI. MLS# 11031415 Call Andrea Crossman Group today for more information 616-355-6387 or visit: http://www.waterfront-luxuryhomes.com/

Monday, December 5, 2011

NEW Price: 810 Pine Bay Ave. Holland, MI. MLS# 11028863. Lake Macatawa Waterfront now $559,000. Call Andrea Crossman Group today for more information 616-355-6387 or visit: http://www.waterfront-luxuryhomes.com/
NEW Listing: 15994 77th St. South Haven, MI. MLS# 1062946. Lake MI Waterfront. Call Andrea Crossman Group today for more information 616-355-6387 or visit: http://www.waterfront-luxuryhomes.com/

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

New Price: Ewing Rd. Twin Lake, MI. MLS#2841282 Now $139,900 for 35 Acres. Call Andrea Crossman Group today for more information 616-355-6387
New Price: Greenly St Holland, MI. MLS#: 2840073: $89,900 for 2.76 wooded acres on Holland's northside Call Andrea Crossman Group today for more information 616-355-6387
New Price: 112 Ave. Allegan, MI. MLS#: 2733108. 20 Acres Now $69,900. Call Andrea Crossman Group today for more information 616-355-6387

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

New Price on Lake MI Lot: 6380 Lakeshore Drive, Manistee, MI 2.270 Acres with 330ft of water frontage MLS#: 11025867 NOW $ 739,000. Call Andrea Crossman Group today for more information 616-355-6387

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Six Michigan Universities Partnered To Create a University-Business Network

Michigan university partner up for Michigan Corporate Relations Network

Six Michigan universities have partnered to create a university-business network that will assist small to medium-sized companies gain access to various university assets.
The Michigan Corporate Relations Network includes, University of Michigan, University of Michigan-Dearborn, Western Michigan University`, Michigan Technological University and Wayne State University, and will officially launch in early 2012, said Jeff Mason, executive director of the University Research Corridor.
The Michigan Economic Development Corporation will funnel about $1.8 million in funding into the project throughout the next two years to create “one-stop business relations offices” at each of the six universities to connect businesses with university assets in research and provide funding for internship programs, which many businesses of that size can not afford, Mason said

Business-CONNECT is MSU’s business relations branch of the new network and has been doing similar work connecting businesses to university assets for more than a year

Pure Michigan Campaign Increases Tourism

The last decade was an especially tough one for Michigan: The state had the highest unemployment figures in the country for four years straight, peaking around 14 percent. Over the last decade, the population in 15 of its 20 largest cities shrank. It faced the near collapse of the auto industry and a national bailout.
But the state is working to change its luck with tourism. Right in the middle of all its economic woes the Pure Michigan campaign was born. Its advertisements on radio, TV, and billboards celebrate the “kick-back and relax” spirit of the state, encouraging visitors to “take time to smell the roses,” or in this case, “take time to walk along the thousands of miles of freshwater coastlines.”

The Pure Michigan ads celebrate the state’s traditions: "Hundreds of lakes, thousands of rivers and streams, begging you to hang up, gone camping, gone swimming, gone sailing…”

Turns out, reminding people that they can feel good in Michigan works. According to a study by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) and the market research group Longwoods International, 2 million new visitors came to Michigan in 2010, spending an additional $605 million.

Critics of the campaign say cash-strapped Michigan shouldn’t be dishing out money to advertise for private tourism companies, but others, like Mark Canavan, argue that the campaign is earning its keep. For every $1 it spends to promote the state, it brings in over $3.

Click here for full article

Monday, November 14, 2011

New Listing: 76 W. 14th St. Holland, MI. MLS#: 11060759. Call the Andrea Crossman Group today for more information: 616-355-6387 https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/14th76?authkey=Gv1sRgCKfL0euL8J7sJA#slideshow/5667803307570977074

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Founder of ForSaleByOwner.com Hires a Real Estate Agent

For Sale By Owner also called FSBO accounted for just 9% of overall home sales in 2010, according to the National Association of Realtors. Every year, hundreds of thousands of properties are listed, not by real estate agents, but by the owners themselves. Often, these are property holders who want to save a real estate agent’s fee. These FSBOs are willing to do the work of researching a property’s correct price, staging it to its optimum, advertising it in the right channels and to the right buyers, and showing, showing, showing.

But sometimes, FSBOs are just owners who have unrealistic expectations of how easy it is to sell a property: just list it on the Internet and the buyers will come, they theorize. That’s why it was a sweet tale for every real estate agent to hear that Colby Sambrotto, one of the founders of Internet listing site ForSaleByOwner.com, ended up hiring a real estate agent to sell his $2 million condo. 
Colby Sambrotto, a founder and former chief operating officer of ForSalebyOwner.com, a large website for owner sales, spent six months trying to sell his condominium himself through online listings and classified ads. But the DIY home selling guru eventually decided to turn the sale over to a professional. His agent went on to lure the elusive buyer Mr Sambrotto’s self-help methods had failed to attract for the 2,000-square-foot, 2 bedroom apartment in Chelsea.  

The news stands as an enormous validation of the real estate profession and while some may tease, it is no laughing matter and the former FSBO CEO made a good financial decision. A working agent does have a big advantage over an FSBO seller: the owner is selling only one property, but the agent is involved in multiple transactions,  has many clients and agent contacts, as well as knowledge of laws to protect you. As a result, the agent can often get a better immediate “read” on the market, due to having a broader sample of information.

For more information on the real estate market in West Michigan call the Andrea Crossman Group: 616-355-6387 or visit: http://www.waterfront-luxuryhomes.com/

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

New Price: 2351 Eagle Dr. Holland MLS#11037134. Call the Andrea Crossman Group today for more information: 616-355-6387
New Listing on Lake Michigan: 3095 Lakeshore Dr. Holland, MI MLS#11059709. Call the Andrea Crossman Group for more information today: 616-355-6387 or visit www.waterfront-luxuryhomes.com
https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/Lakeshore3095?authkey=Gv1sRgCIKG0OX7idfrmQE#slideshow/5672293192538185970
New Listing on Lake Michigan: 2427 Lakefront Dr. Holland, MI MLS#11059749. Call the Andrea Crossman Group for more information today: 616-355-6387 or visit www.waterfront-luxuryhomes.com
https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/Lakefront2427?authkey=Gv1sRgCPap8JGZsPC10gE#slideshow/5672350241452520290
New Listing on Lake Michigan: 12809 Wilderness Tral. Grand Haven, MI MLS#11059735. Call the Andrea Crossman Group for more information today: 616-355-6387 or visit www.waterfront-luxuryhomes.com
https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/Wildness12809?authkey=Gv1sRgCLTtzJyOsY2vyAE#slideshow/5672304951153750706

Saturday, November 5, 2011

OPEN HOUSES, SATURDAY, NOV 5
825 Campbell Rd, Douglas, MI
Two acres in the village, architecturally designed home. 4339 sq ft, 5 bedroom, 3.5 bath home, artist’s studio & 2nd garage.
Open 9 - 10:30 am

14968 Creek Edge Ct, Holland, MI
A quality home in Timberline Acres. 5 bdrm, 4 bath, 3862sq ft. Gourmet kitchen, stainless steel appliances, granite counter, wood floors, massive arched window overlooking woods.
Open 9:30 - 10:30 am

2295 & 2297 Lakeshore Dr, Fennville, MI
Low bank & wide sandy beach, two Lake Michigan homes next door to each other back up to nature preserve. $645,000 and $774,900.
Open 11:30 am - 1:30 pm

Friday, November 4, 2011

Please stop in SATURDAY, November 5 to see these stunning properties!

825 Campbell Rd, Douglas, MI 49406 Two acres in the village of Douglas with architecturally designed home. 4339 sq ft, 5 bedroom, 3.5 bath home built in 2000 as well as an artist’s studio and 2nd garage.
Open 9 - 10:30 am

2295 & 2297 Lakeshore Dr, Fennville, MI 49408
Low bank & wide sandy beach Lake Michigan homes that back up to nature preserve. Good summer rental history. 2295 price reduced to $645,000, 2297 listed at $774,900.
Open 11:30 am - 1:30 pm

14968 Creek Edge Ct, Holland, MI
A quality built home located in highly desirable, Timerline Acres. This 5 bedroom, 3 1/2 baths, with over 3862sq ft of living space features a gourmet kitchen with stainless steel appliances, granite counter tops, large island, wood floors and massive arched window overlooking woods.
Open 9:30 - 10:30 am

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Michigan’s economic health is second-best in the nation

Michigan has the second-best economic record among the 50 states -based on a decline of merely 7.4% since 2008 on a new measure called BEES, the Bloomberg Economic Evaluation of the States.
BEES tracks growth by compiling data on six components that are given equal weight: job creation, personal income, tax revenue, housing prices, mortgage delinquencies and the performance of Bloomberg stock indexes that track the share prices of locally based companies. The BEES index, updated quarterly, is a measurement of growth, not absolute performance, so a slowing economy with low unemployment may rank below a battered state on the mend.

By lowering businesses taxes, eliminating the Michigan Business Tax and removing other barriers to growth, Michigan is leaping from one of the bottom tax climates in the nation to a more competitive position. The nearly $1.8 billion reduction in business taxes promises a new level of economic certainty for businesses and makes Michigan an attractive environment for growth.
 
Earlier this year, Fitch Ratings also took note of Michigan’s progress. This balanced budget based on solid financial principles helped move Fitch’s outlook for Michigan to “positive,” another sign that Michigan is on the right path and that our fiscally sound environment is ripe for economic growth.
 
And just this week, the U.S. Small Business Administration reported Michigan’s banks and credit unions led the country in providing government-backed small-business loans, according to new data from the U.S. Small Business Administration.
 
The Detroit Free Pressreported that from October 2010 through September 2011, $689 million in small-business loans went to businesses in a variety of industries in Michigan. During that time frame, lenders made 2,063 of the most popular type of SBA loans, called 7(a) loans, up 47 percent from the 1,406 loans worth $386 million in fiscal 2010.
 
Michigan's strong,or should we say less-weak? Showing on the BEES index is partly because of a rebound in the auto industry. General Motors, Ford and Chrysler have all gained market share and become profitable since 2008. But the modest recovery in the auto sector hasn't spread to other industries. After being the nation's economic caboose for most of the past decade, why not give the Michigan whistle a little toot when some new numbers show you are suffering a bit less, proportionally, than the rest of the nation's sputtering economic train? Michigan’s economy is recovering from the recession at the second-fastest pace in the U.S., lifted by reviving car makers and local manufacturers, according to a new Bloomberg index that tracks the pace of state growth

North Dakota was the only state to record positive economic progress overall between the end of 2008 and the second quarter of this year, according to the BEES, a new quarterly index that combines data on tax collections, personal income, employment, home prices, mortgage foreclosures and the stock prices of public companies. Those suffering the worst economic tailspins -- with drops of more than 20% since 2008 on the BEES -- were Wyoming, New Mexico, Idaho and Nevada.

Bloomberg Business

Detroit Free Press

Similar Article from Pure Michigan

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Monday, October 31, 2011

Please stop in Saturday, Nov. 5 to see these stunning properties!

825 Campbell Rd, Douglas, MI 49406
Two acres in the village of Douglas with architecturally designed home. 4339 sq ft, 5 bedroom, 3.5 bath home built in 2000 as well as an artist’s studio and 2nd garage.
Open 9 - 10:30 am

2295 & 2297 Lakeshore Dr, Fennville, MI 49408
Two spacious low bluff Lake Michigan homes with combined 300' of frontage. 2295 reduced to $645,000, 2297 listed at $774,900.
Open 11:30 am - 1:30 pm

Friday, October 28, 2011

Carve out time on Saturday, October 29 to see these prime waterfront properties!
1366 Linwood, Holland, MI
Open 9 - 10 am
1584 Waukazoo Dr, Holland, MI
Open 10:30 am - 11:30 pm
450 Howard Ave, Holland, MI
Open 12 - 1 pm
311 Barber St, Spring Lake, MI
Open 10:30 am - 12 pm
7186 Cottage Lane, South Haven, MI Open 2:30 - 4:00 pm

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Carve out time on Saturday, October 29 to see these prime waterfront properties showcased by Andrea Crossman Group!
1366 Linwood, Holland, MI (Lake Mac)
Open 9 - 10 am
1584 Waukazoo Dr, Holland, MI (Lake Mac)
Open 10:30 am - 11:30 pm
450 Howard Ave, Holland, MI (Lake Mac)
Open 12 - 1 pm
311 Barber St, Spring Lake, MI (Spring Lake)
Open 10:30 am - 12 pm
7186 Cottage Lane, South Haven, MI (Lake MI) Open 2:30 - 4:00 pm
New Listing: 236 W. 9th St. Holland, MI 49423 MLS#11058041 Call the Andrea Crossman Group for more information today: 616-355-6387 or visit www.waterfront-luxuryhomes.com
https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/9thSt236?authkey=Gv1sRgCJeo2byll-Hs_QE#slideshow/5667809506735553778

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

New Listing: 14355 Woodhaven Ct, Grand Haven, MI. MLS#: 11057967 Call Andrea Crossman Group for more information 616-355-6387 or visit http://www.waterfront-luxuryhomes.com
https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/Woodhaven14355?authkey=Gv1sRgCKuw_5b9yYvSlAE#slideshow/5667814997553791186
New Price: 265 Portchester Rd. Holland, MI. MLS# 11052349 NOW $239,900 Call Andrea Crossman Group for more information 616-355-6387 or visit http://www.waterfront-luxuryhomes.com/

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

New Price: 2295 Tunnel Breeze Ct. Holland, MI MLS#: 11020627. Now $ 394,900.00 Call the Andrea crossman Group for a showing today! 616-355-6387

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Lake MI waterfront OPEN HOUSES TODAY hosted by Andrea, 3509 S. Lakeview Dr (1-2:30) & 3365 Lakeview Dr, Shelby, MI, (3-4:30). . Listing details, http://www.cbgreatlakes.com/Property/MI/49455/Shelby/3509_S_Lakeview_Dr and http://www.cbgreatlakes.com/Property/MI/49455/Shelby/3365_S_Lakeview_Dr.
See you there!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

ANDREA CROSSMAN GROUP OPEN HOUSES TODAY & TOMORROW!

1703 South Shore Dr, Holland, MI
Charming 1915-era Cottage on Lake Macatawa near MBYC and Eldeans Marina, close to Boatwerks and Piper restaurants and the Holland channel. Gorgeous views from this vintage cottage and it's location. Meticulously maintained. A step back in time w/ clapboard siding and wooden shutters. Steel seawall. Deep water dock can be added. $749,000
OPEN Saturday, 9-10:30 AM

6676 Indian Pipe Circle, Holland, MI
This brand new LEED certified cottage-style home defines Green living! Perched on a small dune with undevelopable land to the west & close to area of a nature conservancy. It is a short stroll to the beach, swimming pool, tennis courts and amphitheater. $825,000
OPEN Saturday, 11 - 12:30

4060 Spring Beauty, Holland, MI
Lake Michigan at it's finest.  6+ bedroom, 6 baths, nearly 9,000 sq.ft. of finely crafted home. 2 main floor master suites, spacious gourmet kitchen, 2 story great room, main floor library/den/TV room, his & hers bedroom suites. $3,350,000
OPEN Saturday, 1-2:30 PM

3509 S. Lakeview Drive, Shelby, MI
Lake Michigan low bluff beach home south of Little Sable Lighthouse. 3117 sq. ft. Owners just completed $200,000 makeover. New bunk room w/custom queen & twin bunk, new bath, laundry; family room in the walkout lower level. Main floor great room opens to new dining/ kitchen w/spectacular views; half bath w/lakeside decking. Sensational master suite plus a 3rd or 4th bedroom; 3rd bath upstairs, new crown molding, fresh paint, new Lutron shades, new hot water heater, new bamboo flooring on main floor. New honed granite in kitchen, stainless steel appliances. Includes 4 acre buildable lot across the street. $995,000.
OPEN Sunday, 1 - 2:30 pm (Andrea hosting)

3365 Lakeview Drive, Shelby, MI
Low bluff Lake Michigan beachfront cottage. Outstanding value. 3 bedrooms and 2 full baths. Totally redone recently. Partial basement w/enjoyable space. Expansive views of the lake & beach from large picture windows. 7+ years of rental history making this a peaceful location home and /or excellent investment property. Colorfully decorated in cottage theme with an eclectic combination of primary colors and pastels. $485,000
OPEN Sunday, 3 - 4:30 pm (Andrea hosting)

2964 Lakeshore Dr w503 Muskegon, MI
Don’t miss this opportunity to enjoy care free living at Balcoms Cove Condominiums and Marina with Million Dollar Views on Muskegon Lake. This 2 bedroom condo also includes a deep water permanent dock.
OPEN Sunday, 1 - 3 pm

Friday, October 21, 2011

Open Houses This Weekend!

1703 South Shore Dr, Holland, MI
Charming 1915-era Cottage on Lake Macatawa, $749,000
OPEN Sat, 9-10:30 AM

6676 Indian Pipe Circle, Holland, MI
This brand new LEED certified cottage-style home in Castle Park. $825,000
OPEN Sat, 11 - 12:30

4060 Spring Beauty, Holland, MI
Lake Michigan at it's finest.  6+ bedroom, 6 baths, nearly 9,000 sq.ft. of finely crafted home. $3,350,000
OPEN Sat, 1-2:30 PM
 
3509 S. Lakeview Drive, Shelby, MI
Lake Michigan low bluff beach home south of Little Sable Lighthouse. $995,000.
OPEN Sun, 1 - 2:30 pm

3365 Lakeview Drive, Shelby, MI
Low bluff Lake Michigan beachfront cottage. $485,000
OPEN Sun, 3 - 4:30 pm

2964 Lakeshore Dr w503 Muskegon, MI
Care free living at Balcoms Cove Condominiums and Marina on Muskegon Lake.
OPEN Sun, 1 - 3 pm
Meet Andrea @ our OPEN HOUSE on Sunday, Oct 23, 3-4:30 pm. 3365 Lakeview Drive, Shelby, MI. Low bluff Lake Michigan beachfront cottage. Outstanding value. 3 bedrooms and 2 full baths. Totally redone recently. Partial basement w/enjoyable space. Expansive views of the lake & beach from large picture windows. 7+ years of rental history making this a peaceful location home and/or excellent investment property. Colorfully decorated in cottage theme with an eclectic combination of primary colors and pastels. $485,000
OPEN HOUSE at 3509 S. Lakeview Drive, Shelby, MI is Sunday - that's Sunday, Oct 23 from 1-2:30 pm. See you there!
Andrea is hosting an OPEN HOUSE this Sunday, Oct 22 at 3509 S. Lakeview Drive, Shelby, MI. Sunday, 1-2:30 pm. Lake Michigan low bluff beach home south of Little Sable Lighthouse. 3117 sq. ft. Owners just completed $200,000 makeover. New bunk room w/custom queen/twin bunk, new bath, laundry; family room in the walkout lower level. Main floor great room opens to new dining/ kitchen w/spectacular views; half bath w/lakeside decking. Sensational master suite plus a 3rd/4th bedroom; 3rd bath upstairs, new crown molding, fresh paint, new Lutron shades, new hot water heater, new bamboo flooring on main floor. New honed granite in kitchen, stainless steel appliances. Includes 4 acre buildable lot across the street. $995,000.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

New Listing 19258 Rosemary Rd. Spring Lake, MI. Waterfront! MLS#: 11056844 Call the Andrea Crossman Group for more information: 616-355-6387
https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/Rosemary19258#slideshow/5665221507501775874
Back on the Market: 1096 Fountain View Circle #1 Holland, MI. MLS# 11056993 Call Andrea Crossman Group for more information: 616-355-6387
https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/FountainView1096#slideshow/5665615766354885554
OPEN HOUSE today (Oct 20) 4:30 - 6 pm at 975 Sunflower Court, Holland, MI. Beautiful freestanding condo at the Cottage of Bay Meadows situated on a prime, private lot overlooking the spring fed nature pond with fountain & nature preserve. You'll love the 3 season sunroom & large deck that spans the length of the home with views & sounds of the fountain & the wildlife from Japanese koi, ducks, wild turkeys & deer. Being sold turn-key with most all items in the condo staying. Custom cherry door, woodwork & entertainment center, Mexican tile, quartz counters in the kitchen & a new (2010) refrigerator & 2009 hi- efficiency furnace. Main level has 2 dining areas, 2 bedrooms, 2 full baths, a 2 stall garage. Laundry/mud room, 3 sided fireplace between dining & living areas & a 3 season room. The lower level has a 3rd bedroom, large family room, full bath, excercise room, office area, workshop, ample storage area with nice built-ins. $249,900. Complimentary Crane's cider & donuts to first 12 visitors. See you there!!
New Listing: 1891 Goldeneye Dr. Holland, MI MLS#:11056950. Tiffany Shores Waterfront! Call Andrea Crossman Group for more information 616-355-6387.
https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/Goldeneye1891#slideshow/5664879752254260818

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

New Price: 6204 145th Ave. Holland MLS#11036242. Call the Andrea Crossman Group today for more information: 616-355-6387
New Listing! 10889 Aspen Trl. Holland, MI MLS# 11056623 for more information Call The Andreea Crossman Group Today! 616-355-6387 https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/AspenTrl10889#slideshow/5664871674242847970
New Listing! 825 Campbell Ave. Douglas, MI MLS# 11056632 for more information Call The Andreea Crossman Group Today! 616-355-6387
https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/Campbell825#slideshow/5640072676938813986
New Listing! 96 Iroquois Ave. Holland, MI MLS# 11056645 for more information Call The Andreea Crossman Group Today! 616-355-6387 https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/Iraquois96#slideshow/5660386260300440082

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Price Reduction: 2351 Eagle Place, Holland, MI. MLS#: 11037134 Call Andrea Crossman Group today for more information 616-355-6387

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Open House today @ 10833 Lakeshore Dr, West Olive, MI from 1-2:30 pm. Cool and drizzly outside- cozy warm inside this charming 1920s Lake Michigan cottage with 80 feet of low bluff frontage. Walk in & walk back in time. Impeccably maintained. Furnishings negotiable. Perfect summer get-away. $995,000
Crane's cider & donuts for first 12 guests!

Friday, October 14, 2011

New Prices on Beautiful woodes lots on Hollands Southside. Parcel 3-4c 142nd Ave MLS# 10028084 & 2926631 Over 10 acres. Call Andrea Crossman Group today 616-355-6387!
New Listing 1839 Ottaw Beach Rd. Holland, MI MLS#11056080 Price inculdes Dock on Lake Macatawa. Call Andrea Crossman Group today 616-355-6387!
New Listing 4872 E Gull Lake Dr. Hiickory Corners, MI. MLS#11055677 207' of frontage on Gull Lake!Call Andrea Crossman Group today 616-355-6387!
Price Reduction! 5983 W Davis Rd. Freesoil MI. MLS#: 11025141 NOW $219,900 for Hamlin Lk waterfront. Call Andrea Crossman Group today 616-355-6387!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Join us for our Fall Color Tour Series of Open Houses: Oct 15, 9-10:30 am, 1366 Linwood, Holland, MI and 11-12:30 pm, 2295 Tunnel Breeze, Holland, MI. Oct 16, 1-2:30 pm, 10833 Lakeshore Dr, West Olive, MI. Complimentary Crane's cider & donuts!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

October Family Fun In The Holland Area

Holland Michigan Farmers Market Holland, MI
Every Wednesday and Saturday you can visit the 50 plus venders selling local fruits, vegtables, flowers, spices, and so much more.  The Market is open from May 18 to November 26 and from December 3 to December 10 (Saturdays only). Market hours are from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm
For more information visit: HollandFramersMarket.com
Location: 150 West Eighth Street Holland, MI 49423

Free Fall Movies Holland, MI
Every Saturday and Sunday with show times at 9am and 10am Holland Seven Theaters offers free fall movies for kids and adults.
10/15-10/16 -Mr. Popper’s Penguins
10/22-10/23 – Diary of a Wimpy Kid
10/29-10/30 – Kung Fu Panda 2
11/5-11/6 – Zookeeper
Visit Holland 7 for more information
Location: 500 Waverly Road Holland, MI 49423 Phone: 616-546-7469

Corn Maze and U pick at Crane Orchards Fennville, MI
Visit Cranes Orchards for great fall family fun. You can enjoy a great meal at Crane's Pie Pantry Restaurant or purchase some old fashion baked goods. There is 20 acres of corn mazes, hay rides, cow train rides, and in season apples to hand pick yourself. For Holloween fun you can walk through the Huanted Corn Maze and 3-D special effects barn. The 3-D special effects barn is like something from a nightmare and unlike anything you've ever seen! You won't believe your eyes! Professional 3-D art work, eerie and dramatic lighting effects, and a vortex tunnel to walk through; full of surprised everywhere!
Haunted Corn Maze
Hours are dark till 10pm. (Not recommended for 10 yrs & under)
Open 9 days in October: 1, 7, 8, 14, 15, 21, 22, 28,and 29th
Enjoy our Haunted Corn Maze together with the 3-d special effects barn for only $14
3-d special effects barn seperate is $4
Corn Maze
Weekdays: 10AM until 6PM and 12 noon until 6PM on the weekends
Pricing: Adults: $7 and Ages 6 years to 10 years: $5
For More Inromation Visit: craneorchards.com for prices and times
Location: 6054 124th Ave. - Fennville, MI 49408 Tel: (269) 561-8651

Run For Your Life October 28th Downtown Holland, MI
The Run 4 Your Life Fun Run is a fundraising event supporting the Holland Free Health Clinic. The event consists of a 5k untimed fun run/walk starting at 6:00pm. The run begins and ends at the Curragh Irish Pub. Participants will travel through Downtown Holland and then travel east to circle the spooky Windmill Island before returning to The Curragh. A Lil’ Pun’kins Mini Run also will be held for children up to 10 years of age starting at 5:30pm.
Online registration is available by going to www.signmeup.com/77768 or by calling Krista at the Holland Free Health Clinic at 616.392.3610 For more inrofmtaion on this event such as cost and domation visit Holland Events

Halloween At Van Raalte Farm Park Friday, October 28, Holland, MI
Start your journey along the trails at the VanRaalte Farm anytime between 5 and 7:30 p.m. Volunteers and staff will be on hand to help you discover wild creatures and fun activities and treats along a wooded trail. There is a $2 per person. Bring a flashlight if you come after 7 p.m. 
Location: VanRaalte Farm Park 1076 E. 16th St. Holland, MI 49423

Treats & Trails Friday, October 28, Holland, MI
Trick or Treat on the ODC Nature Preserve! There will be wildlife and candy stops along the luminary-lit trails in addition to other family-friendly activities. Outdoor Discovery Center from 5:00 - 8:00 PM
Location: 4204 56th Street Holland, MI 49423 Phone: 616-393-9453

Trick Or Treating, Monday, October 31, for the City of Holland
Trick-or-treating for Halloween will take place from 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm on Monday, October 31 in the City of Holland. Visit the City of Holland's website for more information.


For more information on purchasing a home in this wonderful area contact the Andrea Crossman Group!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

New Price: 5405 Griffin Rd. Fountain Rd. Home with Ford Lake Frontage Now: $180,000 MLS#11036599 Call Andrea Crossman Group today 616-355-6387!
FALL COLOR TOUR SERIES OF OPEN HOUSES continues on Oct 15, 9-10:30 am @ 1366 Linwood, Holland, MI; 11 am-12:30 pm @ 2295 Tunnel Breeze, Holland, MI. Complimentary Crane's cider & donuts!

Monday, October 10, 2011

New Listing on 311 Barber St in Spring Lake, MI. MLS#11055268 92ft of frontage on Spring Lake. Call the Andrea Crossman Group at 616-355-6387 for more information.
https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/Baber311#slideshow/5661915395233950242
New Price! 6343 142nd Av. Holland, MI. MLS#11017513 Call The Andrea Crossman Group at 616-355-6387 for more information.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

New Listing on Spring Lake: 19286 Rosemary Rd. Spring Lake, MI MLS#: 11054186 Call the Andrea Crossman Group for a showing today! 616-355-6387
https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/Rosemary19286#slideshow/5660499890702649234
Price Reduction on MLS#: 11017020. 9840 S. North Hulbert Rd in the U.P. with 90 acres of prime hunting land! Contact the Andrea Crossman Group today at 616-355-6387!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Historic Home Value Appreciation Chart

The housing market still faces many challenges. High unemployment, foreclosures and other distress sales are keeping negative pressure on prices. This of course is good news if you are looking to buy as low rates and lower prices have brought affordability to record levels.


For more information on the houseing market visit http://www.waterfront-luxuryhomes.com/


New Listing on Lake Macatawa: 1119 South Shore Dr. Holland, MI MLS#: 11053537 Call the Andrea Crossman Group for a showing today! 616-355-6387
https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/SouthShore1119#slideshow/5654095497875128082

Monday, September 26, 2011

New Listing on Lake Michigan: 944 Indiana Ave. Macatawa, MI MLS#: 11052895 Call the Andrea Crossman Group for a showing today! 616-355-6387 https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/IndianaAve944#slideshow/5656682223126947554
New Listing 1954 Harbor Inn St. Holland, MI MLS#: 11052666 Call the Andrea Crossman Group for a showing today! 616-355-6387
https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/HarborInnSt1954#slideshow/5654092035904232354
New Price on Lake Allegan Home: 1708 River Ln MLS#: 11043314 Now $294,500 Call the Andrea Crossman Group for more information. 616-355-6387
100,000 Price reduction on Lake Michigan Hoome: 12164 Lakebridge Ln in South Haven MLS#: 10044364 Now: $2,000,000 Call the Andrea Crossman Group for more information. 616-355-6387

More tourists flocking to Holland this summer

Summer in Holland means relaxing time at the beach, eating out and shopping downtown.

West Michigan residents have the opportunity to take advantage of Holland’s summer every day, but tourists have flocked to Holland in greater numbers this year, to likewise take advantage.

“We are having a very good season in terms of visitors to the area,” said Sally Laukitis, executive director of the Holland Area Convention and Visitors Bureau. “It seems like Holland has really just hit its stride this summer. All of the downtown activities, the beach, the weather. Our tourist occupancy is up 8.2 percent year-to-date through July.”

“We have people who have vacationed here in the past coming back, people looking for a destination wedding, people who heard about us through (the Pure Michigan state tourism campaign), and our sports market has been up because of baseball and softball tournaments and beach volleyball,” she said.

Hope College played a key role, bringing in 15,000 people to summer camps and conferences.

Holland is receiving more international tourists, too. “We have had visitors from 28 foreign countries that have physically walked into our office,” she said. “Just a wide array like Mongolia and Romania, as well as our usual tourists from Germany, France and the Netherlands. It is so nice to hear people excited about the community you live in.”

“We have seen an increase in visitors from the Ohio market,” she said. “Pure Michigan advertising going national is helping a lot. We will be having our own Pure Michigan radio slot, focusing on Holland, narrated by Tim Allen that comes out soon. That will be big, heading to markets like Lansing, Detroit, Indianapolis and Fort Wayne (Ind.).”

“People know the name Holland from the tulip festival,” Laukitis said. “We are fortunate to have that. Holland has received a lot of national recognition the past few years. That continues to resonate with people.

To view full article visit the Holland Sentinel.com

Friday, September 23, 2011

New Price on Lake Michigan Lot: 17070 Lakeshore Hills MLS#: 11041687Was: $985,000 Now: $895,000 Call the Andrea Crossman Group for more information. 616-355-6387
New Price on Vacan Lot in Holland, MI 4656-B 66th St. MLS#: 2720502 Now: $100,000. Call the Andrea Crossman Group today for more information!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

New Listing in Marigold Woods: 265 Portchester Rd. Holland, MI MLS#: 11052349 Call the Andrea Crossman Group for a showing today! 616-355-6387 https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/Portchester265#slideshow/5654817390942529394

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

New Listing: 450 Howard Ave. Holland, MI: Lake Mac Condo. Call the Andrea Crossman Group for a showing 616-355-6387 https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/Howard450#slideshow/5654810345967129234
New Listing: 186 Sun Meadow Ct. Holland, MI MLS# 11052135. Call the Andrea Crossman Group for a showing 616-355-6387 https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/SunMeadow186#slideshow/5654834378774021634
New Listing: 1745 Ottawa Beach Rd. Holland MI MLS#: 10046431 Call the Andrea Crossman Group for a showing today! 616-355-6387
New Listing: 5749 Lakeshore Dr. Holland, MI. Lake Mi waterfront! MLS#: 11052093 Call the Andrea Crossman Group today for a showing! 616-355-6387 https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/Lakeshore5749#slideshow/5654552890544803314

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

New Listing 4285 S. Ottawa Trl. Shebly, MI. MLS#: 11051513. Call the Andrea Crossman Group today for more information: 616-355-6387 https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/SOttawaTrail4285#slideshow/5506817551883117762

Friday, September 16, 2011

Michigan seeing more Visitors due to Increase in Popularity in the Press

Being No. 1 has its privileges, but one of them is not standing in line.
That’s what throngs of visitors to the most popular areas of Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore did Saturday, less than two weeks after the park won a contest sponsored by the Good Morning America (GMA) television show to select the most beautiful place in the United States.

Traffic was backed up one-quarter mile for about two hours on Saturday, jammed between the fee both and parking lot. Extra help was also needed to keep traffic moving at the nearby Dune Climb.

Hauk said GMA may not deserve all the credit for higher traffic counts. What he termed a “perfect storm” for visitation descended over the park last weekend including other accolades received by the park this year, and the Pure Michigan advertising campaign.

Lakeshore officials and Leelanau County residents are evaluating the impact of the GMA publicity.

“I would have voted 100 times for the Grand Tetons. I don’t want everyone to know about Leelanau. It saddens me,” Roman said.

“Field and Stream came out with a story that said Tippy Dam had the best salmon fishing in the Midwest,” Roman said. “Pretty soon, I started seeing license plates of fishermen from Arkansas, Indiana. I won’t go down there any more. It’s combat fishing … everyone is shoulder to shoulder.”

Excerpt from: Lakeshore grows in popularity (follow link for full article)



Good Morning America 10 Most Beautiful Places in America

What's the most beautiful place in America? "Good Morning America" set out to settle the debate.

We asked you to tell us what you think is the most beautiful place in the United States. Thousands of photos poured in from across the country showcasing breathtaking views, true natural beauty, unique local landmarks, jaw-dropping landscapes, many with awe-inspiring stories to match.

Read below to see which spots made it onto "Good Morning America's" 10 Most Beautiful Places list. We've listed the places alphabetically and want to hear which one is your favorite.

This week, "GMA" will take viewers to the most beautiful spots in the United States, all nominated by you!

Top Ten:
1. Asheville, N.C.
2. Aspen, Colo.
3. Cape Cod, Mass.
4. Destin, Fla.
5. Grand Tetons, Jackson Hole, Wyo.
6. Lanikai Beach, Oahu, Hawaii
7. Newport, R.I.
8. Point Reyes, Calif.
9. Sedona, Ariz.
10. Sleeping Bear Dunes, Mich.

For full article visit: ABCNew.com

Fall Pure Michigan Campaign

Tim Allen plugs Holland- Don’t be surprised if traveling through Fort Wayne or Toledo you hear on your radio comedian and actor Tim Allen touting a visit to Holland in the fall.

“Sometimes going a world away doesn’t require a passport. Step over into Holland, where a world of delight is pure Michigan,” says Allen in the ad.

The radio ads were developed by the Holland Convention and Visitor’s Bureau in partnership with Travel Michigan and its “Pure Michigan” campaign.

The campaign also includes print ads in Redbook. Ladies’ Home Journal, Woman’s Day and a number of other publications. Cost of the $50,000 ad campaign was split between the Holland CVB and Travel Michigan.

Related Articles:
Pure Michigan kicks off $2.4M fall ad blitz

State launches $2.4 million Pure Michigan fall campaign


Holland is Pure Michigan

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Vacant Lot New Listing: 2225 Leigh Ct. Holland, MI. MLS#: 11050926: For more info Call The Andrea Crossman Group Today! 616-355-6387.
Price Reduction: 834 Hazelwood Dr. Holland, MI 49424. MLS#: 11041011. Lake Mac Frontage now $599,000! For more info Call The Andrea Crossman Group Today! 616-355-6387.
https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/Hazelwood?gsessionid=HfQWHz5Ct-xqND5dr5f89w#slideshow/5631515258481245874
Price Reduction: 565 Grove Ave. Holland, MI 49423. MLS#: 11011271. Now: $86,900! For more info Call The Andrea Crossman Group Today! 616-355-6387.

Monday, September 12, 2011

$100,000 Price Reduction: 1073 62nd St. Pullman, MI. MLS#11018160 Call the Andrea Crossman Group today for more info! 616-355-6387.
https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/62nd1073?authkey=Gv1sRgCIG7sIGDtZaWCA#slideshow/5615930653110222930

Friday, September 9, 2011

Remembering September 11, 2001 Ten Years Later

Early on the morning of September 11, 2001 the single largest loss of life from foreign attack on American soil shocked the nation. A group of 19 al Qaeda terrorist hijackers took control of four commercial airliners en route to San Francisco and Los Angeles after takeoff from Boston, Newark, and Washington, D.C Planes with long flights were intentionally selected for hijacking because they would be heavily fueled.

At 8:46 a.m. American Airlines Flight 11 was deliberately crashed into the World Trade Center's North Tower and at 9:03 a.m., hijacked United Airlines Flight 175 was crashed into the South Tower. The planes igniting fires that destroyed the 110-storey landmarks. The South Tower collapsed at 9:59 a.m. after burning for 56 minutes in a fire caused by the impact of United Airlines Flight 175. The North Tower collapsed at 10:28 a.m. after burning for 102 minutes.

American Airlines Flight 77 was flew into the Pentagon at 9:37 a.m. A fourth flight, under the control of hijackers, crashed United Airlines Flight 93 near Shanksville, Pennsylvania at 10:03 a.m. after the passengers fought the hijackers. Flight 93's ultimate target is believed to have been either the Capitol or the White House.

Nearly 3,000 died in the attacks that happened on September 11, 2001.

Television coverage of the terrorist attacks and their aftermath was the longest uninterrupted news event in the history of U.S. television, lasting 93 hours.

 The Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks led to many changes in the U.S. and its residents. The loss of human life and the destruction of commercial property and infrastructure on September 11 temporarily reduced the productive potential of the New York City economy. Former President George W. Bush decided to pass a large amount of U.S. legislation to strengthen U.S. National Security. The impact of 9/11 is clearly visible in the policies adopted by the United States government in the wake of the disaster. The President’s Surveillance Program (PSP) is a collection of secret intelligence activities authorized by George W. Bush after the September 11, 2001, National Security, Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention, The USA PATRIOT Act which reduced restrictions that were placed on law enforcement agencies and gave them the ability to search telephone, e-mail communications, medical, financial, and other records. It eased restrictions on foreign intelligence gathering within the United States and expanded the Secretary of the Treasury’s authority to regulate financial transactions. The United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is a cabinet department of the United States federal government, created in response to the September 11 attacks. And the obvious airline security.

The attacks of September 11, 2001 changed life in the United States forever!

Follow link for a timeline of events
Price Reduction: 2283 Warner Dr. Holland, MI 49424. For more info Call The Andrea Crossman Group Today! 616-355-6387.
https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/Warner2283#slideshow/5629598221696955634
New Listing: 15780 Bittersweet Ln. Spring Lake, MI. MLS#: 11049892 For more info Call The Andrea Crossman Group Today! 616-355-6387.
https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/Bittersweet15780#slideshow/5650405906858419922
$50,000 Price Reduction: 7186 Cottage Ln. South Haven, MI MLS# 11004245. For more info Call The Andrea Crossman Group Today! 616-355-6387.
https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/CottageLane718602#slideshow/5623341756614457010

Friday, September 2, 2011

New Price: 1578 Timber Trail, Whitehall, MI MLS# 11029624. For more info Call The Andrea Crossman Group Today! 616-355-6387

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Andrea Crossman Group invites you to an OPEN HOUSE Saturday, Sept. 3, 11 am - 2 pm at 4060 Spring Beauty Lane, Holland, MI. 6 bd/ 6 bath luxury home. Spectacular dune-top setting. Panoramic views of Lake Michigan. $3,350,000.
New Price on 25 Acre Lot with Lake: 3748 63rd St. Saugatuck, MI 49453 MLS# 10016953 For more info Call The Andrea Crossman Group Today! 616-355-6387

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Price Reduction: 17578 Duneside Dr. Grand Haven, MI MLS#:11033489 Call the Andrea Crossman Group for a showing today!

Monday, August 29, 2011

New Listing: 1703 South Shore Dr. Holland, MI 49423. MLS#: 11048341 Lake Macatawa Frontage! Call the Andrea Crossman Group today! https://picasaweb.google.com/113823270671707632274/SouthShore1703#slideshow/5646295732480469826
Price Reduction: 2295 Tunnel Breeze. Holland, MI MLS#:11020627. Call the Andrea Crossman Group today for a showing! 616-355-6387

Friday, August 26, 2011

Michigan Rated Number One State For Job Growth

Newsweek rated Michigan the top in job potential as number one in the 20 best states for job growth. To find the 20 best states in America for job growth they considered three factors.  

First, a new poll and index from Gallup, which asked more than 100,000 employed people whether their companies are expanding or contracting, and provides an index score from the difference between the two.  

Second, the change in seasonally adjusted unemployment rates, from the annual average for 2010 to the annual average to date, with data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.  

Finally, each state’s 2010 average annual income, also with BLS data. Using z-scores (a measure of each state’s performance relative to the mean), each factor was equally weighted.
The first two data sets examine opinions on job creation and raw unemployment numbers, while the third takes into account how well, in general, jobs in each state tend to pay.

1. Michigan
Employers with expanding workforces: 32%
Gallup job-creation score: 14
Average annual income: $44,438
Unemployment change, 2010 to 2011: -1.99%

2. Indiana
3. Massachusetts
4. Virginia
5. Minnesota
6. Oklahoma
7. South Carolina
8. Pennsylvania
9. Ohio
10. Arizona
11. Wyoming
12. District of Columbia
13. Wisconsin
14. Missouri
15. Illinois
16. New York
17. Vermont
18. Alaska
19. North Dakota
20. Delaware

Full article can be found by visiting this link

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Check out our new site, http://www.waterfront-luxuryhomes.com
Check out our new website!
www.waterfront-luxuryhomes.com

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Holland-Area Shore Named For Debris From 1880 Shipwreck


Ask those who have been around Holland for a while and you may find a few who still remember why the stretch of lakeshore at the west end of Lakewood Boulevard is called Alpena Beach. It’s got nothing to do with the city in Alpena County or the old Getz Farm zoo there that used to draw thousands of visitors in the 1930s with its exotic animal display. No, Alpena Beach is named for a shipwreck; a lost vessel that Great Lakes wreck sleuths consider to be among the most sought-after discoveries the lake has yet to reveal.

Oct. 15, 1880, was a beautiful day when the Alpena left Muskegon, said Craig Rich, author of “For Those in Peril: The Shipwrecks of Ottawa County.”
The Goodrich Transportation Co.’s single-stack side-wheel steamer stopped in Grand Haven for passengers and freight before heading southwest across the lake, top-heavy with an estimated 80 people and 10 carloads of West Michigan apples loaded on its main deck.
Capt. Nelson W. Napier of St. Joseph steered the ship toward Chicago, away from the lakeshore that had become known as the city’s playground.
All was well by 1 a.m. according to captains who saw the Alpena in transit, Rich said. But the barometer pressure was dropping and the “worst gale in recorded history” soon swept across the lake, turning an idyllic weekend trip into a disaster in a matter of hours.
The Alpena was spotted by other captains at 6, 7 and 8 a.m., “laboring mightily” in the high seas about 35 miles off Kenosha, Wis. A large oil on canvas imagining of this hangs in the Holland Museum.
She was spotted again later, lying on her side with one large, distinctive paddlewheel facing the sky. Some say she swamped and sank. Some say she drifted the rest of Saturday and perhaps until Sunday morning.
I don’t know if her wheel was still turning, but I like to think of it that way,” Rich said.
Over the next couple days, pieces of the upper decking and debris from the wooden-built steamer began to wash upon on the beaches between Holland and Saugatuck. Bodies also began to wash up.
Newspapers reported thousands of apples were found bobbing in the surf. The largest debris to beach in the area was the ship’s grand piano, the fat brown leg of which survives in the museum. “Weird melodies” emitted from the instrument strings, according to the museum exhibit.
Because the only manifest was onboard, there is no exact accounting for the lives lost. Reports estimate approximately 80. Newspaper records show crew estimates around 26, Rich said.
The editor of the Grand Haven Herald, W.S. Benham, and his wife, perished in the sinking. Other passengers hailed from Grand Rapids, Grand Haven, Chicago and as far away as New Mexico and Philadelphia. An inquest found Goodrich in contempt following the sinking.
As for the beach, it wasn’t the only thing to be named after the disaster. The storm itself became known as the “Alpena Storm.” And Lakewood Boulevard was once called “Alpena Beach Road.”
The beach may not have formally received its informal name until 29 years later, when the ship’s side-wheeled nameboard washed ashore north of Tunnel Park in 1909.
Rich, a member of the Michigan Shipwreck Research Associates, is optimistic the wreck will someday be found and identified by the engine type and paddle wheels.
The problem, he said, is that “we don’t know where to even start looking.” The ship is thought to be mid-lake somewhere between Holland and Racine, Wis. — a potentially huge search grid.
That’s why it’s such a mystery.” 

Monday, August 15, 2011

The Art Of House Hunting


Armed with your down payment and your pre-approval letter for a mortgage loan, the next step is finding the house that will best meet your family's needs. With realistic expectations, patience and plenty of research, you'll be well on your way. 


Once you narrow the search to neighborhoods you like, you'll want to determine the maximum house price you can afford. Even though you're pre-approved for a set loan amount, it doesn't mean you can afford it. You'll want to factor in other expenses, including retirement and college savings, vacations, and home maintenance and repairs, when you calculate how much you can afford for a monthly payment. And don't forget to budget for homeowners insurance and property taxes. There's also homeowner's assocation fees, especially in newer developments. 


Next, differentiate your needs versus your wants. You need three bedrooms, but a fourth room would be nice for a play room or guest room. You need a two-car garage, but a larger one would be nice for storage. You need a functional kitchen but want hardwood floors. You need two bathrooms but want a luxurious master suite.


As you begin your house-hunting venture, prepare a checklist. Break it down between exterior and interior characteristics. Make notes on each feature and make notes. Some people give each a 1 to 10 score, which is fine, but the first few houses you see will score differently than the last few because you have many more to compare against. Also, after viewing many homes, the numbers begin to lose meaning. 


Some of the exterior features to rate might include size of yard, quality of fence, paint condition, roof condition, window conditions, garage, back yard. When it comes to interior, think about square footage; the floor plan; condition of walls; the size, quality, and functionality of the various rooms and closet and storage space. 


Your checklist should also include any other factors you deem important—the amount of traffic, the appearance of the neighborhood, safety in the area, the reputation of local schools, etc. 
Here are some other suggestions from industry experts: 

  • Take a camera with you to capture an image of each house you look at that makes it to the "maybe" list. 
  • Don't make a hasty decision, especially if you feel yourself becoming guided by emotion. Selecting a home takes time, thought and analysis. You should carefully weigh the pros and cons of each house you like. 
  • Review your checklist and notes and compare it against your needs, wants and budget. 
  • Bring your spouse, friend or family member with you to get a second opinion. They may notice a shortcoming that you've overlooked. 
  • Find out how much utilities and maintenance cost. 
  • Stay on top of newly listed houses via a Multiple Listing Service on the Internet. 
  • Remain in close contact with your agent. This is extremely important if you're in a strong seller's market and/or in which homes that are priced right go fast. You want a good agent who will alert you of new listings and who will show you the houses as soon as they're listed. 



Be prepared to look at the potential of a house rather than what you see in front of you. Set your priorities and decide what can be sacrificed. It's more important that the layout of the house and the number of bedrooms you need fit your needs and that all major systems are functional versus your dislike for the avocado green carpet or the lack of landscaping. Those types of cosmetic shortcomings can be easily remedied once you buy the house. 


If you find a house you like, offer a competitive bid. Keep in mind you'll likely be competing against other offers—especially if interest rates are low and the spring buying season is in full bloom. 
And don't forget—once you make an offer, make it contingent upon the findings of a professional home inspection. If any major defects surface, you'll want to have the leverage to renegotiate or back out of the deal completely.

Monday, August 8, 2011

The Importance Of Landscaping


A beautiful yard is a head-turner, no doubt about it. The good news is that even if you can’t tell a tulip from a turnip at the garden center, you can still create eye-catching curb appeal by paying attention to the basics of good landscaping. Ignoring your yard, or doing something that’s out of character with the neighborhood can jeopardize the assessed value of your home.

“We have several categories for design and appeal,“ says Frank Lucco, a real estate agent and professional appraiser in Houston. “That’s where we make those adjustments. Poorly maintained landscaping can be as much as a 5 or 10% deduction.”
Appraisers are quick to praise the allure of a well-tended lawn and good-looking landscaping when it comes time to sell your home, but most do not assign any specific increase in monetary value for upkeep.

Nevertheless, most professionals agree that curb appeal and a well-maintained appearance prevent your property from losing value. Here are the top suggestions from real estate agents, appraisers, and landscape designers for boosting the curb appeal of your yard:

Green Up The Grass

If your house has a front yard, make sure it‘s neat and green. You don’t want bare spots, sprawling weeds, or an untrimmed appearance.

“It’s so simple to go to Home Depot, buy fertilizer, apply it every six weeks, and water it,” says Mitch Kalamian, a landscape designer in Huntinginton Beach, Calif. “It will green up.”

If the yard looks really scruffy, you may decide to invest in some sod. According to the National Gardening Association, the average cost of sod is 15 to 35 cents per sq. ft. If you hire a landscaper to sod your yard for you, labor will add 30% to 50% to the total cost of the project.

Another alternative is to plant low-maintenance turf grasses. Turf grasses are durable and drought-resistant. Expect to pay $18 to $30 for enough turf grass seed to plant 1,000 sq. ft. of lawn area.

Add colorful planting beds

Flower beds add color and help liven otherwise plain areas, such as along driveways and the edges of walkways. In general, annual flowers are a bit cheaper but must be replaced every year. Perennials cost a bit more but come back annually and usually get larger or spread with each growing season.

If you’re not sure what to plant, inquire at your local garden center. Often, they’ll have a display of bedding plants chosen for their adaptability to your area. Also, they‘ll be inexpensive because they’re in season. Try pansies in the summer, and asters and mums in the fall to add vibrant color.

Valerie Torelli, a California REALTOR® who dresses up her clients’ yards to sell their houses faster and for more money, says that in her market, she can put in a bed of colorful annuals and bark, as well as cutting down overgrown shrubs, for less than $500. “We can buy gorgeous plants for $3.99 to $15.99,” she says.

Add landscape lighting

For homeowners who have made a size-able investment in landscaping, it makes sense to think about adding another 10% to 15% to the bill for professional lighting. “You can’t see landscaping after dark,“ says Brandon Stephens, vice president of marketing for a landscape lighting firm in Lubbock, Texas, “and buyers are not always looking at houses on a Saturday afternoon.”

The cost of a system runs from $200 for a DIY installation to more than $4,000 for a professional job. If you‘re doing it on your own, the key is to light what you want people to see, such as mature trees and flowering shrubs.

Plant a tree

The value of mature trees is particularly difficult to determine. Lucco says that in his market, mature trees contribute as much as 10% of a $100,000 property’s overall value. In addition, a properly placed shade tree can shave as much as $32 a year on your energy bills. Expect to pay $50 to $100 for a young, 6- to 7-foot deciduous tree.

You can make your own initial assessment of the value of your property’s trees by visiting the National Tree Benefit Calculator. For example, a mature Southern red oak tree with a diameter of 36 inches in the front yard of a house in Augusta, Ga., would add $70 to the property value this year, according to the calculator.



Monday, August 1, 2011

Why A Home Remodel May Be Better Than A Savings Account

Are you keeping your home longer than you expected, due to the sluggish and uncertain home-resale market?? If you are, you've got company. Only 43% of homeowners believe they would get their asking price if they sold today, according to the latest American Express Spending & Saving Tracker.
That lack of confidence, coupled with interest rates on personal savings accounts that are at or near record lows has a lot of homeowners investing in their homes instead of deposing money in their banks.
In fact, nearly 2/3 of homeowners will be remodeling in 2011, says American Express. Improving your home can be a smart strategy over the long run. In the meantime it cam make your home more comfortable and convenient while you are living there.
Now is the time to ask yourself if putting your hard-earned savings into your house is right for you. You wont see the retuning on your investment in the near-term, but when you factor in a quicker sale or higher sale price, you could end up with more profit than savings account interest rates can provide.

Improvements that pay:
Experts recommend that you stick to improvements likely to increase your home's resale appeal and value. There's no such thing as a guaranteed return on investment, but some home improvements have better value track record than others. A basement remodel will recoup 70 percent of its cost at resale, according to the 2010-2011 remodeling magazine Cost vs. Value Report. Adding a bathroom returns more than 53 percent of your investment, while modernizing a kitchen can brings back 72.8 percent.

Build a bath:
If you plan to install a bathroom, laundry or wet bar in an area that lacks below-floor plumbing drainage, you can dramatically reduce your installation cost with macerating technology. Installing drainage in a basement attic or garage can be messy , time-consuming and expensive. But with macerating, or up flush technology, you can have plumbing virtually anywhere in your home, without breaking through floors or jack-hammering concrete.
Want to make your new bath seem larger? Let the light in! If a skylight isn’t in the budget, use recessed ceiling lights and large mirrors. Also choose a warm semi-gloss paint and install 12 X 12 or larger tiles to minimize grout lines.
A walk-in shower is a smart and cost effective space-saver. If you don’t need storage space, a pedestal sink is another good alternative. Two surefire ways to give the illusion of space are a recessed medicine cabinet and a packet door instead if a traditional hinged door.
Rebuild a kitchen:
An average rebuild of a kitchen takes nine months to plan and three months to build, according to the National Kitchen and Bath Association. You can improve the overall look and feel of a kitchen with a lot less work and money by simply refurbishing what you have. Some refurbishing options include refaced cabinets instead of new, resurfaced counter-tops or an added back-splash, updating flooring and under cabinet task lighting. Regardless of the project you plan to undertake, there are a few things you can do to ensure you get the most for your money. Here are some general tips from the National Association of the remodeling Industry.
  • Establish a budget
  • Hire a qualified re-modeler
  • Compare products and prices before you begin
  • Work with a contract

From: 2011 Answer Book, The Holland Sentinel

Monday, July 25, 2011

Coast Guard Festival 2011

Mark your calendar from July 29 to August 7 for a week of fantastic Coast Guard festival fun, celebration, and tradition. The festival has been been occurring for nearly 90 years, and each year it has gotten bigger and better. Now everyday is filled with numerous events and gatherings. Its wonderful that most of the events are free, such as the street dancing and car show. What ever you choose to do for the week do not forget to see the magnificent fireworks on Saturday August 6. Since there are so many things to do we divided to give you a schedule of events.