Mad City Dream Homes Real Estate Blog, Madison WI

Many real estate teams attract new team members by offering them "leads" that are purchased from websites like Zillow and Online leads can be attractive to agents because they offer the promise of a guaranteed income as soon as they join the team. 

But online leads do come with two big downsides. 

The first big downside is that online leads tend to be very expensive -- usually costing a few thousand dollars per transaction. And of course the second big downside is that online leads often end up being low-trust/low-loyalty clients -- due to the simple fact that they've been purchased rather than cultivated through an existing relationship. 

There is an alternative to buying leads, and that is the MCDH model of cultivating positive

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If you've been thinking about modernizing your home's exterior, you've probably been thinking about replacing your siding, which can be a time-consuming and expensive project. We wanted to let you know that local business owner, Dale Tomalin, has a much more affordable and efficient solution than siding replacement. 

Spray Net WI Painting Project

Dale is the franchise owner of Spray-Net of Southern Wisconsin, creators of a painting technology that is flexible enough to avoid cracking, hard enough to avoid chipping, and smooth enough for washing. Dale's product transforms brick, vinyl siding, aluminum siding, doors, windows, and kitchen cabinets -- and comes in a variety of colors. We continue to receive excellent feedback about Dale and his work, which is covered by a 15-year

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There's still a fair amount of confusion about the new federal rules impacting buyers and sellers. What you need to know is that the new rules mandate two changes in practice, which are expected to take effect in August. 

#1) In most cases, buyers will need to sign a buyer agency agreement before viewing a property with an agent. Even if you're not sure that you want to work with the agent for the long-term, you will need to sign an agreement. 

At Mad City Dream Homes, we have always believed that you should be able to "test-drive" our services before you decide to work with us for the long-term. For this reason we will continue to emphasize short buyer agency agreements -- agreements that are as short as a single day or that apply to only a single

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At Mad City Dream Homes we have a clear set of home-selling philosophies. Here's a quick intro to our approach. 

mad city dream homes listing photography

(photo by Step Inside Media with staging by Debbie Lea and Shelley Lazzareschi)


The actions you take and the decisions you make early on in the process determine your overall experience with your sale. You'll experience a smooth and profitable sale when we work together on these 5 important fundamentals:  

  1. Addressing important home repairs 
  2. Implementing low-cost/high-impact cosmetic updates 
  3. Following the advice of our professional stager
  4. Using professional photographers for all of your visual media
  5. Pricing your home properly for your local market 


We're huge believers in

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Experience has taught us that a successful sale is very often the result of 5 different experts coming together in support of the seller's goals. 

5 Experts for the Home Seller

(Photo by Step Inside Media)

The 5 experts

The first two experts are the professional painter and the professional handyman. The painter and the handyman create value by eliminating common buyer objections, and by addressing a few low-cost/high-impact updates. It's amazing what new cabinet hardware, a few new light fixtures, and a fresh coat of the right paint can do for a home. Very often it's the simple updates like these that create tens of thousands of dollars of value for the client. 

The third expert is the professional stager. The stager shares her guidance with the painter and the

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If you've been struggling during the first half of the year to find and buy the right home, we encourage you to stay positive and remain committed to your search. That's because now that we've made it through the frenzy of the spring home-buying season, the market is offering you a little more inventory, a little less competition, and a little more room to negotiate.  

Hang in there. While other buyers are getting ready for their summer vacations, your perfect opportunity could be waiting for you right around the corner...

Advice for Dane County Home Buyers

(Photo by Step Inside Media with staging by Debbie Lea and Shelley Lazzareschi)

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At Mad City Dream Homes, we have a clear set of philosophies when it comes to buyer representation and serving our buyer clients. Here's how the Mad City Dream Homes approach compares to the approach of a more traditional buyer agent.  

buyer representation standards

(Thank you Step Inside Media for this photo and for all of the photos that you produce for our clients.) 

Buyer agency contracts

  • The traditional approach: The traditional approach requires you to commit to a long-term buyer agency agreement before the agent will assist you. 
  • Our philosophy: We believe you should be able to "test-drive" our services before you decide to work with us, so we won't ever require you to sign a long-term contract. 


  • The traditional approach: The traditional
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A new construction home offers one of your best opportunities for buying in our low inventory market. With a new construction home, you get all of the latest features and finishes. Plus, there's the added benefit of less competition. Whether you're seeking a turnkey home or a custom-built home on the lot of your choice, Dane County has a few dozen neighborhoods for you to choose from. 

Dane County New Construction Homes

(Thank you Step Inside Media for your beautiful photography!) 


Here's our list of 60 emerging neighborhoods in Dane County: 

The properties linked below include new construction homes and buildable lots. You can also visit this page that's always up-to-date with the latest new construction listings. 

Browse New Construction Here



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    We're seeing some encouraging signs that condo selection is improving in the Madison area, thanks in part to the addition of several new developments across Dane County. A few of these newer developments include: 

    • Besa Monona in Monona
    • Calliope Cottages in Middleton
    • Happy Place Condominiums on Madison's East Side
    • Lacy Ridge Condominiums in Fitchburg
    • The Ridge at Fox Hill in Deforest
    • Wild Oak Condominiums in Stoughton 

    If you're in the market for a new or newer condominium, please free to contact us for a helpful consultation. We'd love to help you. Or check out our guide to new construction condos below. 

    Browse New Condominiums Here
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    Madison area condo prices continued to move higher in the month of April. Here's our latest update on the Dane County condo market. 

    Dane County condo prices

    The price per square foot increased from $210 in April of 2023 to $229 in April of 2024. That's a 9 percent increase year-over-year. Through the first 4 months of the year, the price per square foot is up 12 percent. 

    Madison WI condo prices April 2024

    MLS condo listings

    New condo listings edged higher in the month of April, and are up by 15 percent through the first 4 months of the year. In the bigger picture, listing activity remains low compared to most other years this century. 

    Accepted offers

    A few more condos went under contract in the month of April, but were low compared to most other years dating

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