All Blog Entries by Sara Ifert

Found 21 blog entries published by Sara Ifert.

A recent listing in Middleton was located on a quiet cul de sac on a large lot that backed up to a wooded conservancy. It was a perfect backdrop for a cozy and inviting home. However, the home was somewhat sparsely furnished. It needed additional furniture and decor to help it show to its full potential. This is a scenario where staging can make a huge difference.

REALTOR Shelley Lazzareschi worked with the seller to develop a staging plan that worked best for them and their budget. The seller decided to hire Brook Furniture Rental to provide furniture and decor while the home was on the market. Brook Furniture delivered and set up the furniture - they even hung the artwork! Debbie Lea of Showcase Home Stagers worked alongside with Shelley to finish

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Making your way around the Lake Edge neighborhood, you’ll find businesses adorned with beautiful murals, homes being renovated, and new businesses opening their doors. The community is close to everything on the east side of Madison, plus Lake Monona. Lake Edge is a community with a lot to offer for homeowners and visitors alike. 

The Lake Edge neighborhood has a surprisingly natural feel for being located right within the city. Mature trees provide a peaceful canopy over the community, and large lots give homeowners room to spread out. Most of the homes in this community are ranch or bungalow style, built between 1940 and 1960. Mad City Dream Homes Realtor Ann Raschein lives in the neighborhood. “I love so much about the Lake Edge

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Heading to an apple orchard in the fall is a great tradition held by many in the Dane County area. It’s a great opportunity to get outside on a beautiful fall weekend. COVID-19 is affecting the way many apple orchards are doing business, but they are still open and excited to welcome visitors. Since policies may change at any time, be sure to check the orchard’s website or Facebook page before your visit to familiarize yourself with their protocols.

Appleberry Farm, Cross Plains

Appleberry Farm small family-owned orchard in Cross Plains. They will be open to the public beginning in September. In order to limit the number of visitors at a time and to allow for physical distancing, they will be using a sign-up form on their website for visitors to

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The real estate market continues to be competitive for buyers in Dane County. With low inventory and low interest rates, there are plenty of buyers looking to buy their dream home. Our full time Real Estate Agents have time-tested strategies to help their clients stand out from the competition. Mad City Dream Homes REALTORs Ann Raschein and Maureen Moran share a few of their favorite tips and tricks to get their buyer clients into a new home.

Strategy 1: Personalized Outreach

Sometimes a well-crafted letter to the right potential seller can lead to a perfect real estate match. Maureen and Ann have both used this strategy, either to find a yet-to-be-listed property or to augment an offer.

Maureen Moran

Maureen: I have had buyers know exactly which condo

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The home inspection is an important step in the process of buying and selling a home. It can also seem like a stressful event for buyers and sellers alike. Read below for tips from Al Gindt of BPG Inspections on having a smooth inspection. Al also shares how inspections have changed during the pandemic to keep both buyers and sellers safe.

What can buyers and sellers expect from an inspection?

Al Gindt, BPG InspectionsA home inspection's first priority is to determine if there are any safety-related issues with a property. The second priority is to educate buyers on their new investment. “I try to emphasize to buyers that we’re not looking for specific issues as much as we're looking for what is going on in this home,” said Al. “Our goal with the inspection is to

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You may be thinking it would be great to buy a new home. Perhaps you could use more space. Or, maybe it’s time to downsize from a two-story to a ranch-style home or condo. The catch is, you have to sell your current home first! Our team of full-time real estate agents helps clients with this scenario all the time. In this article, we'll share a few tips to consider that can help make the process less stressful. Coordination and some additional planning can go a long way to helping you sell and buy at the same time.

couple searching for their new home

Tip 1: Focus on your home-selling plans first. It may be tempting to start looking for your dream home before you have prepared your home for sale. However, you risk finding the perfect home and being unable to write an offer because

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Relocating across the country isn’t easy, but Jenn and her husband were committed to finding a place in Madison for their retirement. They worked with Shelley Lazzareschi and Tammy Steiner to find the perfect home, completing the entire home buying process virtually. They are moved in and loving their new place!

Jenn and her husband were planning to move out of California for their retirement. They decided they wanted to move somewhere in the midwest, and embarked on a year-long search. Then, Madison became their top destination.

“My daughter was accepted into a summer program at UW-Madison, and we fell in love with the area when we came to visit her,” said Jenn.

Jenn searched Google for “Madison Realtors” and really liked the Mad City Dream

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If you’re thinking about selling your home, you may feel uncertain about moving forward with your plans during the pandemic. The market is still strong for sellers, and there are still plenty of buyers looking to purchase their dream property. But, there are some special considerations to think through as you plan to sell your home. It is possible to sell your home while keeping you and your family, as well as the general public, safe. Read on for tips from our agents on having a successful sale in this unique market.

Tip 1: First, take the time to prepare your home for the market. Some buyers are relying entirely on virtual showings, so you want to make sure that your home is ready for it’s close-up! Photos and videos are more important than ever.

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When a buyer first steps into a staged home during a showing, they usually find it easier to picture themselves living there. A vacant or sparsely furnished home can be more challenging for buyers, because it can be tough for them to imagine where their furnishings will go.

A recent client worked with Shelley Lazzareschi to sell the condo they weren’t living in. They had been living in northern Wisconsin and had never fully moved into their Madison condo after it was built, so it was minimally furnished. Renting furniture for staging was cost-prohibitive for the seller, so Shelley and Debbie Lea from Showcase Home Stagers assisted the client by doing the staging themselves. Debbie and Shelley spent a few hours shopping for various items like artwork,

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Judith and Robert purchased a home in 2018 with the help of Shelley Lazzareschi. Since they were relocating from Seattle, they relied on virtual showings with Shelley to find their new home. Thanks to technology and Shelley's persistence, they were able to buy their lovely house without stepping inside first!

Robert and Judith were planning a move from Seattle to Madison to be closer to their aging parents so they could help care for them. They were planning to rent an apartment downtown and take their time to look for a home to buy on the west side. They figured this plan would be the easiest way to buy a home in the area without a lot of travel back and forth from Washington to Wisconsin.

Still, Judith wanted to get a sense of the Madison real

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