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Real Estate LUBBOCK AVALANCHE-JOURNAL

SATURDAY DECEMBER 17, 2011

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Inside Real Estate:

WTHBA Featured Floorplan - Page 3 Local Real Estate News - Page 6

Warming Up Your Home Decor - Page 5 Ideas for Organizing - Page 5

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On The Web:

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WestMark Realtors 806-535-1206 jdaniel@westmarkrealtors.com Where did you grow up? I was born at Reese Air Force Base in Lubbock, Texas and then spent my early years just steps from a beach in San Diego, California, perhaps explaining my “requirement” for an annual beach retreat! My family settled in Lubbock when I began school, and now I proudly call myself an alumna of Texas Tech University. Why do you live in the Lubbock area? What do you like most about it? After graduation from Tech, careers in both the airline and banking industries lead me to various parts of the country. At that time in my life, “Lubbock Texas was in my rear-view mirror,” but always “near and dear” to my heart. What is it about Lubbock that draws us back? We hear the story time and time again… moved away… came back... unsurpassed sunsets… miles and miles of (affordable) real estate… so much to do… but bottom line, it’s the people! What do you enjoy doing when you’re not working? Two words – family and the outdoors! I am blessed beyond words by my husband, Brant, and our children, Nick and Alexa. You’re likely to find us

outside the box. Opportunity may only ring once, so you better answer!

How long have you worked in real estate? I took a leap of faith in 2004, got my real estate license and joined WestMark.

What tips do you have for someone looking to buy or sell a home? Your real estate professional will be handling one of your largest and most important assets. Use the same care you would when choosing your doctor, CPA, or investment advisor. Look at their track record; if they do a lot of business there’s a reason! Choose

Call us for all your Real Estate Advertising needs!

What is your specialty? I specialize in residential real estate in the West Texas area, representing BOTH buyers and sellers.

together on the golf course, on a trout stream, Texas Tech tailgating, and yes, on the beach at least once a year!

What did you do before? Fresh out of Texas Tech with a degree in finance I began a banking career in the Dallas area. My “second” banking career came later in life, specializing in credit and lending with a local Lubbock bank. Sandwiched between, I was a flight attendant with Delta Airlines. They used to say “Marry me and Fly Free” and that’s exactly what we did! I met Brant at 30,000 feet, and here we are almost 30 years and two amazing children later, still flying every chance we get.

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Realtor Revealed Joy Daniel

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Joy Daniel, WestMark Realtors

someone that will always be forthright and frank but respectful of the fact that you, the seller or buyer, are the ultimate decision maker. Hire someone you respect, someone you can work well with, someone you are proud to have representing you… then turn them loose.

Photo by Misty Setzler

What are the most gratifying and the most challenging aspects of what you do? The most gratifying is fulfilling your commitment to your clients. The most challenging, and the most energizing, is paying attention to every detail, always thinking

What is the most unique property you’ve listed or sold? To me the true uniqueness comes through more in the people than the bricks and sticks. It is their wonderful quirks and character that make the properties what they are. Leopard carpet and linoleum… red doors and no doors… indoor pools and outdoor showers …water front and waterfall… putting greens and too much green… run down and dressed up… high security and low maintenance… elevators and undergrounds… historic homes and holey homes… sprawling land and garden homes… ghost stories and two stories… the amazing thing is they’re all suited for someone… just takes the right “one”! Why should someone choose you as their real estate agent? Experience, integrity, outstanding customer service… RESULTS! I travel with a shovel (sometimes virtual, sometimes literal)… always digging… always searching… for the buyers, the ideal fit… for the sellers, something to get that SOLD sign in place.

Josh Horsey 806-766-8653

Jason Whittle 806-766-2196

Kendall Krohn 806-766-8646


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Real Estate

Featured Floorplan – Cole Thomas Homes

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4018 125th Street – Brooke Heights Progressive design, attention to detail, and high-end finishes characterize this beautiful home built by Cole Thomas Homes in the new Brooke Heights subdivision. Located in the heart of the Cooper School District, this 3 bedroom, 3.5 bathroom home with study, spacious basement, laundry, mud-room, and 2-car garage embodies the design driven, custom built approach of Cole Thomas Homes. This Featured Home is sponsored by the West Texas Homebuilders Association in cooperation with the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal. An elegantly landscaped entry courtyard focuses on a custom entry door awning, as well as a dramatic steel and cedar trellis over French doors that provide access to the courtyard from a versatile dining room that can be utilized for formal or informal dining. The indoor-outdoor living theme is carried to the back patio as well, where high cedar tongue and groove ceilings, decorative brick wall inserts, patterned concrete, accent lighting, landscaped planter, and preparations for a BBQ area make for an inviting space. Inside, you’ll find an open concept plan geared around the impressive custom kitchen with a massive granite island that can seat up to six, custom wine rack, glass tile backsplashes, and pantry. Archways throughout frame the views inside, and the great room boasts a beautiful natural stone fireplace surrounded by custom stacked stone walls that make a dramatic impression. Off the great room, the study with built-in desk and stylish cabinets can serve a variety of purposes from its location between the front bedrooms. Above the granite countertops at the master bathroom vanities, stacked stone walls are highlighted by custom mirrors and lighting. An under-mount soaking tub in granite deck, mosaic stone and glass tile, beautifully detailed shower, and awesome closet with built-in shelving and 10drawer dresser complete the master suite. Additional details include: travertine wainscot in powder room, custom mud-room cabinetry, lots of storage, custom cedar beams in the dining room and entrance gallery ceilings, granite and oil-rubbed bronze fixtures and hardware throughout, 8’ tall interior doors, 6” exterior walls, five zones of in-ceiling audio, and a basement that is wired for a theater and includes an in-wall subwoofer. One unique approach of Cole Thomas Homes is that all homes come with an iPad Owner’s Book full of owner’s manuals, pictures, scheduled maintenance, supplier and subcontractor contacts and more! For a private tour of this Featured Home, please call Cole at 853-8585, or visit www.colethomashomes.com. “Like” them on Facebook by searching for Cole Thomas Homes. “We are excited to get you into the home of your dreams!”

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Four easy ways to warm up your home decor (ARA)–- As the chill of winter sets in, your home interior may be lacking the warmth and comfort you’d prefer. Fortunately, creating an inviting atmosphere does not require huge amounts of time or money. And you don’t need to be a professional interior designer – or even have experience in decorating – to transform your home into a welcoming haven. To bring your decor into the season and give your home noticeable appeal, follow a few easy tips. Paint Color has an enormous effect on mood and it greatly influences the atmosphere of a room. Neutral and white walls can feel stark and cold during the winter months, so consider warming them up with rich hues like those found in Dutch Boy’s 2011 holiday palette. Yellow Springs, Reservoir Red and Loden Wool will create the perfect cozy feel, and accents of Ultra White will make your new colors stand out even more. “The warmth of this light yellow is reminiscent of lights glowing on the tree, popcorn strands strung, or light from the candles set on the mantel,” says Rachel Skafidas, color and design specialist for Dutch Boy Paints. “It’s the perfect backdrop for a deep, traditional red and mistletoe green.” And don’t stop at paint – incorporate these colors into other decor elements for a festive feel throughout the home.

Rugs Hardwood and natural stone floors have become extremely popular in the past several years, but these options can be cold and unpleasant underfoot in the wintry months. Adding rugs in visible areas will instantly give any room a more inviting look, as well as warmer feet on cold winter mornings. Experiment with different sizes, styles, shapes and designs throughout the home. You might even consider switching out current kitchen and bathroom rugs for more seasonal choices to give these rooms a festive appeal. Lighting Now that winter is here and days are shorter, depending on natural sunlight to brighten a room past mid-afternoon is no longer an option. But instead of harsh white ceiling lights, give your home a cozy glow with strategically placed lamps, candle sconces and wall lights. A variety of light sources creates a welcoming feel that still allows occupants to entertain or read comfortably. A trip to any home improvement store will prove there are endless possibilities to light your home, with many unique and easy-installation options to choose from. Accessories It’s the little things that can make the biggest difference, and accent items have a great effect

Paint, rugs and accessories can instantly add warmth to any room in your home. No matter what your budget of level of decorating experience, you can give your home a cozy, comfortable feel easily and affordably. on the ambiance of your home. From decorative sofa pillows, to festive candles, to holiday table runners, the details of a room determine its mood. If you’re feeling creative, many home and craft magazines have hundreds of

ideas for do-it-yourself wreaths, centerpieces, wall hangings and other accents. And appealing to other senses with a pine-scented candle or seasonal bowl of potpourri will instantly make a room more inviting.

No matter what your budget or level of decorating experience, you can give your home a cozy, comforting feel easily and affordably. Using these tips, you’ll be ready to enjoy the great indoors in no time at all.

Smart ways to use credit when redecorating

Get the family involved with the organizing efforts. Even kids can help by sorting their toys and

putting them away. Kid-friendly organizing systems, like colorful cubbies, make the job easier.

Simplify & organize: the hottest trends in home improvement (ARA) – With the economy remaining uncertain, homeowners are tending to stay in place and upgrade their homes, rather than move up to something newer or larger. Just as economic conditions evolve, however, so does this housing trend. Simplifying and gaining control are now the hot incarnations of the “staying put” trend. Organizational design expert, TV and radio personality, and author of numerous New York Times bestsellers, Peter Walsh hosts “Extreme Clutter” on the Oprah Winfrey Network and has starred on TLC’s “Clean Sweep.” Walsh offers some advice on how do-it-yourselfers can simplify home improvement, and gain control of their home environment, room by room: Coping in the Kitchen The kitchen is the heart of the home, where you spend time as a family, prepare meals and entertain guests. All that activity and use can make it difficult to stay organized in the kitchen, but doing so can save you time and money.

MAXIMIZE STORAGE SPACE with handy solutions like over-the-door hanging pockets.

• Maximize cupboard space with easy-to-install sliding racks. These racks make it easy and fast to find items, even in the deepest cupboards. • Keep cooking utensils and flatware neat and easily accessible with a compartmentalized drawer organizer. You can find them in kitchen and home design stores. • If you store often-used spices in a cupboard, it’s easy to lose track of what’s in there. You don’t have to give up your cabinet convenience. Just put your most-used spices in a small baking sheet (you can even buy a disposable one) so that when you need something, you can slide the sheet out to make finding it easier. • Retire your junk drawer – we all have one. It’s the drawer where you deposit receipts, warranties, product manuals and other items. One way to clean up the paper portion of the mess is with an online organizational tool which allows you to keep track of purchases, warranties and manuals. Cutting Closet Clutter Whether you have a spacious walk-in closet or a modest single-bar one, keeping your bedroom closet organized can be a challenge. But an organized closet means speedier wardrobe changes and a more harmonious environment. • “We wear 20 percent of our clothes 80 percent of the time,” Walsh says. Declutter your closet by getting rid of that 80 percent you don’t wear. At the start of the season, turn all your hangers so that they face back to front. When you take something out and wear it, rehang it the correct way. At the end of the season you’ll be able to see which items you haven’t worn. Those are the ones you can probably live without. • Reclaim vertical space. Look for creative ways to use the walls, backs of doors and other vertical spaces in your closet. Modular home organization systems can solve most storage challenges. Taming the Toy Room Children outgrow toys almost as quickly as clothes. It’s important to regularly sort toys with your children to decide what to discard, what to pass on and what to keep. • Involve kids in deciding what should stay or go. Arrange toys in piles by type of toy, age appropriateness or length of time the child has had the toy. This will help your kids see the toys as distinct groups and make the task more manageable. • Bring in space-maximizing products like colorful cubbies with canvas bins or decorative shelving units. • Rather than having to tackle organization tasks in a daunting mass once or twice a year, take steps to stay organized throughout the year. A little organization today means fewer headaches tomorrow.

(ARA) – When your redecorating project is done, you want everyone who sees it to think it looks like a million bucks. But woe to your wallet – and possibly your credit – if you overspend to achieve that look. Credit can be a good tool to help you fulfill your decorating dreams, provided that you use it wisely. The last thing you want is to rack up redecorating debt that outlives the stylishness of your room’s new look. Before you give your bank card a workout, or sign up for a new credit card with your local home improvement store, take these credit-conscious steps: 1. Assess your current credit status. Whenever you’re considering a significant credit expenditure – like financing a remodel – it’s important to understand your credit and how your spending might impact it. Websites like freecreditscore.com allow you to see your credit score, and provide information on how it’s calculated, what factors affect it and even when is the best time to apply for new credit. Understanding your credit could mean the difference between using credit wisely to fund your redecorating project, or opting to wait until your credit situation improves before you incur new debt. 2. Estimate the cost of your project. Spending without a plan is one of the surest ways to overspend, especially when it’s a home improvement project. In order to create a plan, you need to know the likely cost of your redecorating project. Online cost estimators can help you get an idea of how much you’ll need to fund your redecorating dreams. You’ll need to consider all aspects of your project, from paint and carpeting to curtains and accessories in order to get the most accurate cost estimate. 3. Determine what you can do yourself. If you can do some of the home improvement work yourself, you’ll not only save some money, you’ll get the added bonus of pride in doing it yourself. Be honest with yourself and think about which tasks you’re skilled enough to tackle (painting, hanging curtains) and which ones you’ll need to leave to a professional (laying carpet or placing tile). 4. Establish a budget Once you have a cost estimate, and know where you can find DIY savings, you’ll be able to establish a budget for your remodeling project. To prevent overspending, pad your budget as much as 10 percent to cover cost overruns. When your budget is set, you’re ready to begin. Keep a running log of all expenditures and refer to your budget frequently to ensure your project is staying on track and within costs. Redecorating can be a fun, rewarding home improvement project. With advanced planning and careful consideration of your credit, you can use credit wisely to help make your vision a reality.

Easy ways to reuse, recycle gift wrap The gift wrap industry earns roughly $2.6 billion in retail sales each year. And as much fun as all the different patterns of wrapping paper can be, gift wrap is a relatively unnecessary bit of decor, purchased with the intent of being ripped away and discarded. There are many ways that wrapping paper can be reused or recycled. 1. Save scraps of paper to use for children’s art project. 2. Use in scrapbooking or as matting for photos. 3. Shred and use it as filler in packing boxes or as a decorative filling for gift bags. 4. Use bits of paper to make gift tags. 5. Line shelves or drawers with the paper to protect surfaces. 6. Crumple up the paper and use it to stuff into tall boots so they keep their shape. 7. Trace the pattern of an envelope on the paper and cut out your own envelopes for little notes or holiday greetings for next year. 8. Cover a bulletin board with a piece of gift wrap for a festive look. 9. Find out which types of paper can be recycled and wrap it up with your newspapers. 10. Add some wrapping paper that’s free of harmful dyes to your compost heap.


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Local Real Estate News – Lubbock Association of Realtors

Put a log on the fire – buying or selling a home with a fireplace

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BY Joe L. Murfee, III, President Lubbock Association of REALTORS®

Although Texas winters may not rival those in other parts of the country, fireplaces are a popular feature with Texas homeowners. Winter is the perfect time to cozy up next to your fireplace with loved ones and a cup of something warm, and with the kind of weather we’ve had lately, it is especially inviting. Romantic as this may sound, buying, selling, MURFEE or owning a house with a fireplace does present some considerations. Hearth and Home A fireplace serves not only as a source of warmth but is also a focal point of the living room in many homes. A crackling fire

gives the space an inviting feel, and a fireplace can be a valuable selling point to potential home buyers, especially if you’re selling in the winter months. Year after year, the fireplace is rated one of the top amenities desired by homebuyers for the value it adds to the house and potential energy savings. But, beware – a fireplace with structural problems or safety issues can throw a real estate transaction off track, cost a lot of money to fix, and even put lives at risk. On Closer Inspection As a potential buyer, you should insist that the fireplace be thoroughly inspected, along with the rest of the home, by a professional. If the inspector finds a potential

problem, he may assess it himself or recommend that a specialist further explore the problem. Fireplaces sometimes have structural problems that could be dangerous or lead to expensive repairs. This might include the fireplace separating from the home, improper installation, or corrosion of the inner liners of metal chimneys. An inspection also may include factors such as the pilot flame or electronic igniter, the valve pressure, the heat-exchange area, the gas-log positioning, and any electrical connections. Other fireplace hazards include creosote buildup (which is extremely flammable), improper venting, birds nesting in the chimney, or issues with gas lines in gas fireplaces. Maintenance is the Key As a homeowner, you need to maintain your fireplace not only to keep you and your family

safe, but to prevent potentially deal-breaking problems when you decide to sell. Routine service and any suggested maintenance will keep your fireplace safe and in top condition. Consider having a certified professional inspect your fireplace annually even if you don’t use it often, as birds may nest in the chimney and create a fire hazard. Ask your Lubbock Realtor for further information about fireplace service and inspections. Keep It Clean The easiest way to prevent problems in your fireplace is to give it regular cleanings during the wood-burning season. If you’re going to clean your fireplace on your own, make sure you wear appropriate eye protection, gloves, and a dust mask. Cover the fireplace opening, rugs, and furniture nearby to keep soot and other

debris from damaging your home. If cleaning your fireplace requires a ladder or getting on the roof, only someone with experience and proper safety precautions should take on this task. For your own safety, be aware of electrical and fire hazards and use caution when handling brushes. Keep cleaning tools and other dangerous items away from children. For most people, fireplace maintenance is a job better left to a professional. Like many other features of your home, the fireplace is carefully engineered and built for years of safe operation. It’s up to you to be sure your fireplace is properly maintained so it will perform well for years to come. Keep warm and stay safe! For more homeowner tips, I encourage you to visit LubbockRealtors.com and TexasRealEstate. com.

HouseLogic poll: jobs and housing top concerns for voters A recent survey by Houselogic. com, the consumer website from the National Association of Realtors®, finds that jobs and the housing market will be two of the most important issues for voters in the 2012 election. Nearly onethird of respondents said housing will be the top issue on their mind when they head to the polls next November. “We need to keep housing first on the nation’s public policy agenda, because housing and home ownership issues affect all Americans,” said NAR President Moe Veissi, brokerowner of Veissi & Associates Inc., in Miami. “The results of this survey show that many Americans understand VEISSI that.” Respondents were asked “What issue area will have the greatest

Voters say jobs and housing are the key issues they’ll care about in the 2012 election. They are one and the same. impact on your vote in 2012?” National security, healthcare, and energy/environment trailed housing and unemployment by wide margins: Jobs/unemployment – 54% Housing – 27% National security – 8% Healthcare – 4% Energy/Environment – 2% Other – 4% With unemployment still high, it is easy to see why so many Americans are concerned about the job market. However, employment and the housing market are inextricably linked because economic growth and job creation cannot occur without a housing recovery.

Housing accounts for more than 15 percent of the U.S. Gross Domestic Product – it’s a key driver of the national economy. Home sales generate jobs. NAR estimates that for every two homes sold, one job is created. New spending on homebuilding products, furniture, and other residential investments also have a significant economic impact. Some recent indicators show that the economy might be starting to rebound, with pending home sales rising strongly in October, according to NAR’s Pending Home Sales Index. However, any changes to current programs or incentives must not jeopardize a housing and economic recovery. Unemployment, consumer con-

fidence and consumer spending will not rebound until a number of issues are addressed. “NAR actively advocates public policies that promote responsible, sustainable homeownership, which will in turn support overall economic recovery,” said Veissi. “We want to ensure affordable, accessible financing; support tax policies that encourage homeownership; and help more people stay in their homes or avoid foreclosure through streamlined short sales.” This HouseLogic survey shows Americans understand that a housing recovery is essential to the nation’s economic recovery, and many of those housing-related issues will be on the minds of voters in 2012.

HouseLogic is a free source of information and tools for homeowners from the National Association of Realtors® that helps homeowners make smart decisions and take responsible actions to maintain, protect and enhance the value of their home. HouseLogic helps homeowners plan and organize their home projects and provides timely articles and news; home improvement advice and how-to’s; and information about taxes, home finances and insurance. For more information and tips on how to make smart decisions and take responsible actions to maintain, protect and enhance the value of your home, visit www. houselogic.com.


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Lubbock AJ Real Estate Section 2011-12-17