Welcome to the Good Life

Ann Marie is your real estate expert! With a career spanning over 30 years Ann Marie knows what it takes to deliver results! Check out her videos below for some valuable information on buying and selling a home!


Then vs. Now: Our Luxury Market

Our luxury market has hardly remained static and, as you’ll learn from today’s update, conditions bode well for those ready to make a move.

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Today I’d like to take just a few minutes to talk about trends and statistics that have caught my attention in our higher-end market. 

By virtue of my certification with the Luxury Home Marketing Institute, I like to keep a watchful eye on the upper-end market—homes priced at $500,000 or higher for the Augusta area. The stats we’ll observe today come from the Aiken County, Richmond County, and Columbia County market, and we’ll compare the year-over-year numbers between January 1 to June 30. 

At the midpoint of this year, our overall number of sales have come down slightly from where they were a year ago. By the end of June last year, 70 luxury homes had sold compared to 61 this year. 

The average luxury home is spending 143 days on the market right now, which is the lowest market we’ve seen in our Augusta market in quite a few years.

This is because of a dropoff in inventory, and on top of that, luxury homes are spending fewer days on the market; between 2018 and 2019, the average number of days on market went from 154 to 143, respectively. 

In fact, 143 days is the lowest mark we’ve seen in our Augusta luxury market in quite a few years. Given the fact that our luxury market is moving well, now’s as good a time as any to jump into the market if you’ve been thinking about downsizing or if you’re ready to move up into a luxury home.   

If you have any questions or you’re interested in luxury homeownership, please give me a call at 706-481-3800. I look forward to talking to you! 


Cybersecurity Tips With Juanita McDowell

Staying safe online is more important than ever these days. Juanita McDowell joined me recently to talk about some of the top tips for protecting yourself on the internet.

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Today I’m very excited to be joined by national trainer Juanita McDowell. Just about four years ago, I heard her speak about the importance of getting good, local, reliable information out to our databases through video. Really, I’m here today because of her.

I was just in a class with her for a few days receiving the e-pro designation, which is a designation through the National Association of Realtors that’s based on technology and with a heavy emphasis on data breaches and how we can protect our client’s information. I asked Juanita to join me to talk about three tips for maintaining good cybersecurity:

1. When you open an email, hover over the address and any links to avoid being taken to the wrong website. If the links or addresses don’t match up, don’t click them. Phishing emails are always a threat, so make sure you hover before you click.

2. Freeze your child’s credit by going to equifax.com, experian.com, or transunion.com. Most kids don’t have credit, but that doesn’t mean their info isn’t vulnerable to getting stolen. You can ensure this won’t happen by freezing your child’s credit on the three websites listed above.

3. Avoid using free/public WiFi networks unless you have a VPN. If you’re in an airport or coffee shop, stay away from the “free” WiFi network unless you have a Virtual Private Network. Honestly, it’s a good idea to get a VPN anyways to encrypt and protect your information.

Thanks so much to Juanita for joining me to explain these tips. If you have any questions for her, you can reach her at (404) 401-6209 or send her an email to Juanita@InMotionConsult.com.

If you have any other questions for me in the meantime, don’t hesitate to give me a call or send me an email. I look forward to hearing from you soon.


2 Ways to Prepare Your Home for the Summer Market

You only get one shot at making a good first impression.

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You’ve decided to list your home in our summer market. Congratulations! In order to take advantage of all the opportunities in front of you, you’ll need to be at the top of your game when it comes to your preparation.

After all, you only get one shot at making a good first impression, so today I’ll share two ways you can make your first impressions count.

You’ll first want to declutter and depersonalize the house. One of my specialties is helping sellers make minor adjustments after their home has gone unsold for a while. Recently, I did this very thing with a seller who asked me to lend my expertise and experience. We did some decluttering and depersonalizing and, just like that, the home sold.

Once that’s accomplished, consider repainting your home—especially if the home’s colors are a little passé. You’ll be amazed at how much more bang for your buck you’ll get with an updated interior and/or exterior paint job. Nowadays, white shades like “jersey cream” and gray shades like “agreeable gray” show really well with buyers.

If you have any specific questions about how to best prepare your home for today’s market or real estate in general, please give me a call or send me an email. I look forward to hearing from you!


Should I Put My Home on the Market This Summer?

If you’ve been on the fence about selling your home, now is the time to get off. Here are three reasons why.

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Is now the time to list? The answer… YES!

If you’ve been on the fence about selling your home, now is the time to make a move. 

The Real Estate market in the River Region (Augusta, Aiken, and the surrounding area) is moving quickly. In fact, according to Realtor.com, Augusta is one of the two three cities seeing the biggest growth in their inbound to outbound ratio. 

“With a high inbound/outbound ratio signaling strong external interest in a market, relative to the desire of locals to look elsewhere, an improvement in the inbound/outbound ratio can signal a potential shift in the attractiveness of a local area’s real estate market and suggests that migration trends could improve as well.” – Realtor.com

As one of our regions most experienced agents, I’m often asked, “Should I put my home on the market this summer?” If you’re asking this question, please read on!

Right now is an excellent time to list your home. 

1. Supply is low. There aren’t as many homes for sale as there are buyers looking, so families who are listing now are positioning themselves favorable in our current market. 

2. A New Demographic. A record number of millennials are entering the market for the first time. I’ve seen that some in this generation have delayed in purchasing until now.  But, with student loans nearly paid off and their families growing, there is a new demographic looking for their next home. This will allow first-time homeowners to move up and allow those looking to downsize to take full advantage of the current conditions.

3. Homes are affordable. Currently homes are affordable, interest rates are low, and there is no shortage of buyers. According to CoreLogic,  a real estate data and analytics company, “Potential buyers who tested the waters in recent years should have an easier time now, which should be especially good news for anyone who made an offer but lost their bid for a home,” said Justin LaJoie, general manager at RealEstate.com. But if mortgage rates fall further, resulting in more buyers entering the market this spring, the competition could get fierce again.

If you have any questions for me about the current state of the market or what you can be doing as a homebuyer or seller, don’t hesitate to give me a call or send me an email. I look forward to hearing from you soon.


A Sneak Peek at Our Brand-New Office

Our brand-new office is the signal of a brand-new era for Good Life Augusta. Here’s a sneak peek at the construction phase of our new home.

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After being in the same office for 20 years, my team is finally moving to a new spot. It’s the same building, but our new space is a little bit newer, a little bit bigger, and a little bit fresher. We’re looking forward to an exciting new era for Good Life Augusta.

We are excited to take you behind the scenes of the construction that’s going on today. In the video above, you can get a better look at all of our new offices and spaces. We’ve picked out all the colors and all the furnishings, and we’re looking forward to improving and getting better with this new space.

Our team office has beautiful, large windows and our new flooring is being installed at the end of the week. This new space is going to allow us to serve our clients even better, and our tech guys have been in the office setting up all of our new technology.

If you have any questions for me in the meantime or any real estate needs that I can assist you with, don’t hesitate to give me a call or send me an email. I look forward to hearing from you soon.


Don’t Miss Our Upcoming Seller Seminar

Our seller seminar is coming up, and we’ve got all the details on this event to share with you today.

Interested in selling? Click here to receive more information

Interested in buying? Contact us to view all listings

If you’ve been following our content, you already know that we’ve recently been covering a number of amazing tips to help sellers succeed in our market. Now, we’d like to announce an exciting event that will bring all these tips together into a single presentation: our upcoming seller seminar!

This seller seminar will take place from 6pm to 8pm on January 24 at Meybohm Realtors’ new plaza office (6004 Evans Town Center Boulevard).

In addition to hearing from me on the selling topics we’ve touched on in recent messages, you will also hear from a local home inspector, home stager, and lender during this incredible event. We want to make sure that you walk away from this seminar with a thorough knowledge of the home selling process. To ensure that this is the case, we will also open the floor for questions before wrapping things up.

Of course, you’ll need to reserve your place ahead of time. You can RSVP here.

If you have any other questions or would like more information, feel free to give me a call or send me an email. I look forward to seeing you on January 24.


Your Market Update for 2018

The 2018 numbers mean great things for next year.

Interested in selling? Click here to receive more information

Interested in buying? Contact us to view all listings

The numbers are in, and to finish out the end of the year, today we’ll be going over a quick market update for 2018.

The average sales price is up 7% and inventory is down 5.9%. We anticipate that prices will continue rising, meaning it will soon be a great time to sell. To get an idea of what your home could sell for, we can give you information about your specific neighborhood, as well as help you figure out how to meet your real estate goals as a seller. If you’re looking to buy a home, we can help as well—either way, just give us a call.

In the meantime, we hope you enjoy a very happy holiday season and spend plenty of time with friends, family, and loved ones.


How to Get Up to 18% More When Selling Your Home: Part 5

In the final part of our series, we’ll discuss negotiation.

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Today we’re back with the fifth installment of our series on how to earn up to 18% more money when selling your home. This time, we’ll be discussing the part that can make the difference between getting extra money in your pocket or none at all: negotiation.

Negotiating is as much an art as it is a science. The art comes from my 30 years of studying and dealing with homes and prices, but there are specific steps to follow in order to get the most for your home. We’ve seen clients earn up to 18% more than what they originally thought they would, thanks to negotiation tactics and the strategies we covered in previous videos.

One of the best ways to get top dollar for your home is to price it to sell. Doing this from the outset gives you the power in any negotiations you have with buyers. When your home is priced well, you’re likely to see multiple offers, which gives you the luxury of negotiating prices further. Even if you don’t experience these situations, buyers will still be concerned that someone else will come along to seize the opportunity you’re providing. Because they don’t want to lose out on a great deal, they’ll be more willing to meet your needs.

Starting your home at the correct price gives you the ability to choose when you want to close, what you’ll pay in closing costs, and what you’ll eventually sell your home for.

If you have any questions about negotiation, want to buy or sell your home, or need any information, feel free to call us. We look forward to hearing from you.


How to Get Up to 18% More When Selling Your Home: Part 4

In the fourth part of our series, we’ll discuss marketing your home. 

Interested in buying? Contact us to view all listings

Today, we’re back with the fourth installment of our series on how to earn up to 18% more money when selling your home. This time, we’ll be discussing the part that really helps our sellers get more out of their home: marketing.

We market our homes on three levels: internationally, nationally, and locally. Because of our contacts, we’ve been referred to people who are new to the area and looking for local expertise. We see our listings on real estate websites that are focused on the international market.

We also belong to strong national networks and see a few referrals each month. These referrals come from other agents who send us business from another part of the country. Our marketing department does a great job making sure our listings are seen on a national scale. Our relocation department sold over 530 homes last year.

On a local scale, we simply apply our many years of experience and build interest the old-fashioned way. This means hours spent on the phone, connecting with potential buyers and sellers.

The connections we’ve developed help us market our homes to people anywhere in the world and ensure that many potential buyers will get the chance to see your home.

If you have any questions about our marketing, want to buy or sell your home, or need any information, feel free to call us. We look forward to hearing from you.

Next time, we’ll be covering negotiation on a home.


How to Get Up to 18% More When Selling Your Home: Part 3

In the third part of our five-part series, we’ll discuss pricing your home.

Interested in buying? Contact us to view all listings

We’re back today with the third installment of our five-part series on how to earn up to 18% more money when selling your home. This time, we’ll be discussing the part that really helps our sellers get more out of their home: pricing.

When finding that perfect price, you need to make sure you’re getting pricing advice from someone with integrity and knowledge about the market. Some agents have a tendency to only tell you what you want to hear, so it’s important to have the information and guidance needed to make an informed decision.

By simply pricing a home strategically, we can get a seller can get at least 10% more for their home. We look at where homes are selling and price ours slightly less than those on the market, but slightly more than ones that have sold. Recently, we were able to get a seller $20,000 more than what their previous Realtors thought the home was worth. Market knowledge is an invaluable tool.

It’s just as important that your Realtor has the integrity we talked about. Otherwise, you may be tempted to go with someone who can sell your home quickly but for much less. You want to go with the agent who both understands the market and isn’t just trying to get hired by telling you what you want to hear.

If you have any questions about pricing your home strategically, want to buy or sell your home, or need any information, feel free to call us. We look forward to hearing from you.

Next time, we’ll be covering how to market your home.