Friday, April 30, 2010

Fed Statement Little Changed

With a Fed meeting, Treasury auctions, and major economic data on this week's schedule, investors were watching closely for unfavorable news. In the end, there were no major surprises. Little changed in the Fed statement, auction demand was at average levels, and the economic data was generally close to expectations. The biggest influence on mortgage markets turned out to be turmoil in Greece, which caused investors to seek the relative safety of US bonds, and mortgage rates ended the week a little lower.
The economic troubles of Greece have been in the news frequently in recent weeks. Its ability to recover from significant budget deficits and to pay its debts has been questioned. The European Union (EU) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) are working on a bailout package for Greece to allow enough time for the country to stabilize. Despite the coming assistance, though, the debt of Greece was further downgraded on Tuesday. In addition, investors grew more concerned that other smaller European countries will reveal similar problems. As a result, investors shifted funds to safer investments, including US Treasuries and mortgage-backed securities (MBS).
Prior to Wednesday's Fed meeting, it had been reported that support was growing among Fed officials to begin sales of mortgage-backed securities (MBS) from the Fed's portfolio. The Fed statement made no reference to MBS sales, however. As expected, the Fed made no change in the fed funds rate. The statement described the economy in slightly more positive terms. Otherwise, it was very similar to the prior statement. The Fed retained the "extended period" language regarding the fed funds rate. In short, nothing in the statement caused investors to alter their outlook for Fed policy. For more information and free mortgage advice, please e-mail Keith Gillow at:

Tight Lines,


Water Wonderland

Michigan is blessed with an abundance of lakes. Whether it's the great lakes coastline, inland all sports lakes or the quiet waters of the deep woods, there's something out there that can suit every lifestyle and recreational desire. Are you a lake person? What's your idea of a perfect lake? Share with us your dream and we'll help you find that stretch of shore that's just right for you!


PS...My favorites lakes have good fishing and sandy beaches!  

Sharp Home Near Kalkaska Lakes and Trails

Sharp country home on five acres with 2BR/2B, attached 2 stall garage and 24 x 24 pole building. This home is clean and move-in ready and suitable for retirement home, small family or Up-North retreat reasonably priced at $99,900. Located in eastern Kalkaska County it is 5 minues away from 860 acre all-sports Manistee Lake's Sands Park and public boat launch. Manistee Lake provides fabulous water sport activity including fishing, swimming, skiing and great fishing!!
In addition to the 90 lakes and 3 rivers in Kalkaska County and the abundance of state land for hunting, mushrooming, wildlife sighting you also have the groomed Blue Bear Snowmobile Trail providing year around outdoor activity. Kalkaska is minutes away from all the great restaurants, shopping and casinos in the greater Grand Traverse area.
For more information on this listing or any of the direct waterfront listings in Kalkaska County, please contact for personal buyer representation.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Great Value on Private Lakefront Home

Cool Lake is in the northwest corner of Lake County. This wonderful, custom log sided home is complete with a huge pole building, private lot, dock, swim raft, pontoon, and fishing boat. The lake has no public access and is known for the great fishing and wildlife. Great location! Start a new family tradition this summer and take advantage of the current real estate market. 20K Price Reduction!! Move right into this one of a kind property on spring fed, 73 acre Cool Lake. Private setting with wonderfully crafted home in northern Lake country. Close to Little Manistee River, the Michigan shoreline, snowmobile trails and area attractions. Second lot it available as well to insure privacy for years to come. Custom log sided home with 3 bed, 2.5 bath, 28x40 pole barn, 150' frontage. Hot water heat, wrap around decks, great views, completely private setting! This property is ready for you to move right in and start making memories. A must see!! Cool Lake is a quiet lake with no public access and about 35 homes. Great fishing and swimming, or enjoy an evening cruise around the lake in the pontoon. This is a great property and priced below appraised value!!
For more information, or to schedule a time to view this wonderful property, please contact Brian Pitser at 231-342-9133 or email at

CRA Protecting Trout Streams-Manistee River Project

The upper Manistee River has just received some great news. Conservation Resource Alliance is working on a project that will cool temperatures on the section of river below CCC Bridge, to create better trout habitat and cooler water temperatures.

This is from the CRA website page describing the project: "The North Branch of the Manistee River is a cold, groundwater-fed tributary to the Manistee River and is a state designated Natural River. It has a naturally reproducing population of brook trout small brown trout population. The new world record brown trout was caught from the Manistee River in September 2009. The riparian corridor surrounding this river functions as an important regional wildlife corridor and is buffered by thousands of acres of state owned land. These ecological hot spots are threatened and degraded by impacts at the Mecum Road crossing of the North Branch and the abandoned Flowing Well Trout Farm, a 1720 acre property recently acquired by the State of Michigan. Poorly managed private parcels in this corridor also contribute to the degradation of water and upland habitat in the area. Through this project, CRA will coordinate the replacement of the existing Mecum Road crossing with a new Timber Bridge structure and the complete restoration of the Flowing Wells Trout Farm for fish passage and habitat improvement."

For more information click on this link

Friday, April 23, 2010

Mortgage Rates Rise on Improving Economic Data

While inflation remained low, stronger than expected economic data released this week was negative for mortgage markets. As a result, mortgage rates ended the week a little higher.
The big news in this week's economic data came from the housing sector. March Existing Home Sales rose 7% from February, and existing home sales were 16% higher than one year ago. Inventories of unsold existing homes fell to an 8-month supply, from 8.5-months in February. March New Home Sales were even better, jumping 27% from February to the highest monthly rate since last July. This marked the largest single-month increase in new home sales since 1963. The chief economist of the National Association of Realtors (NAR) credited the homebuyer tax credit for the strong March housing data. Buyers must sign a contract by April 30 to take advantage of the tax credit, so the April data should benefit as well.
Friday morning, CNBC reported that support is growing among Fed officials to begin sales of mortgage-backed securities (MBS) from the Fed's portfolio. In a program which ended March 31, the Fed purchased $1.25 trillion of MBS to help lower mortgage rates and boost the economy. According to CNBC, "at least" six members of the Fed's policymaking committee support near-term MBS sales if the economy continues to improve. The selling could begin as soon as the third or fourth quarter of this year. Fed Chief Bernanke still views the likely time frame to begin MBS sales as next year, but his recent comments have indicated a willingness to keep more options open. With the next Fed meeting taking place on Wednesday, the 2:15 et release of its statement will take on added significance. If the Fed actually conveys an intention to begin to sell MBS soon, mortgage rates would be likely to rise on the news. For more information and free mortgage advice, please e-mail:

Tight Lines,


Thursday, April 22, 2010

Jay's Sporting Goods Land & Recreational Real Estate Expo This Weekend!

Land and Recreational Real Estate Expo at Jay's Sporting Goods in Clare, MI

This weekend Jay's Sporting Goods in Clare, Michigan will be holding their first ever Land and Recreational Real Estate Expo! What a great place to visit with local Realtors and see what fantastic listings are available in this recreational area. With so much to do in Clare and Gladwin County from ORV'ing to fishing to boating on our many lakes you can focus on your desired area and learn more about the market by coming to the Expo.

Make sure to stop by my Homewaters Recreational Real Estate booth to pick up a booklet of available listings on area lakes, rivers and with acreage. There will also be a helpful packet of information for sellers who are thinking of listing. Gladwin County ORV trail maps will be available, some free goodies as you can meet me and my assistant Candi!

Hours of the Expo are as follows:

Friday 6pm-9pm

Saturday 10am-8pm

Sunday Noon-4pm

Jay's Sporting Goods of Clare is located at 8800 S. Clare Ave in Clare, Michigan

Are you thinking about making Gladwin County, Michigan your new home? Gladwin County is home to both Wixom Lake and Secord Lake! Are you thinking about taking advantage of the great interest rates and affordable prices to buy your own slice of Northern Michigan Heaven? Contact me today and lets gets started! I know the area very well and I know the market even better! You can call me at 989-429-2600, email me at or visit my website.

Charming Traverse City Cottage

Great affordable cottage on all-sports Chandler Lake just outside of Traverse City waiting for a new family to enjoy!! This cottage is turn-key ready and a fabulous setting on a half acre with 263 feet of frontage and great views of Chandler Lake. This cottage features 3BR/1.5B with multi-level decking, gas fireplace for cozy evenings and a 2-stall garage. Very private setting near hiking and ski trails, state land and a partial interest in Strawberry Hill Park.
Traverse City and the surrounding communities is one of the best places in Michigan to get away from it all back home! Outdoor recreation, shopping, festivals, sightseeing, restaurants, and casual attire are the norm for Northwest Michigan. As you get to know the area and its visitors and locals you will quickly realize that life Up North is fabulously easy and fun!!
This cottage is priced at $175,000, is a terrific value and a great place to "escape to" with low maintenance and expansive views from your deck or beach. Please visit our website for more details.

Au Sable Holy Water ~ $649,000

Atop the Holy Water of the famous Au Sable River lies this classic 50's era ranch style retreat.

Elegantly perched on an elevated site and overlooking a flowing trout stream, this property is in the heart of the famous stretch known as the "Holy Water". The view is stunning and the surroundings superb!

/ positioned amidst wooded privacy and fronting Au Sable River / spacious and open living space / 1992 sq. ft. / 3 bedrooms & 2 baths / screened sitting room / wet bar, fireplace and yes...there's hardwood floors too!/

/ 22.5 acres & 1020' frontage / garage for riverboat / stair & dock access to river / 
Classic up north style combined with Nature 

join together to provide the ultimate recreational lifestyle experience. Whether you pursue wild trout with a fly rod or gaze upon the river from a panorama of glass, you're sure to be lured to it's hypnotic currents. A short descent down the stairs and to the dock ... a whole new adventure awaits you!
Learn more about this home's features and view more images by visiting:

Mark Bear, Realtor ~ Home Waters Recreational Real Estate ~ ~ Toll Free 877-820-1194 Ext 4

Friday, April 16, 2010

Real Estate Market Conditions for March 2010 - Gladwin and Clare County

Real Estate Market Conditions for March 2010.

Gladwin County is located in rural Northern Michigan and is conveniently located within 3 hours of Detroit and 2-2.5 hours of Flint and Lansing making it easy to come "Up North" for the weekend. But, we encourage you to stay longer. After visiting Gladwin you will want to spend much more time here! Gladwin, Michigan is an area popular for its scenic lakes (including Wixom Lake and Secord Lake), plentiful state land, quaint parks, Amish communities and down town shopping. Gladwin is primarily a second home/resort community due to the amount of waterfront homes. Gladwin, Michigan has real estate to accomodate every buyer from very affordable cabins to luxurious homes. As a life long resident of Gladwin I know the area well and the real estate market even better!

The real estate market conditions in Gladwin, Michigan along with most areas of Michigan, remain challenging but appear to be improving and stabilizing! A stagnant economy and a lack of qualified buyers remains. However, if you are interested in buying your first home or your vacation home, it is a fabulous time to buy! Interest rates are low for qualified buyers, there is a lot of inventory to choose from and homes are more affordable then they have been in years! There is less available inventory and more buyers in the market now so don't delay if you are thinking of beginning a search to buy this Spring. Sellers now is the time to get that listing on the market as well! The Federal Government is also offering tax credits for qualified home buyers with an accepted offer by April 30, 2010. For specific information on who qualifies for these tax credits of of up $8,000 visit the Hot Topics tab on my website.

Here are the latest real estate market conditions for Gladwin, Michigan and the surrounding areas of Beaverton, Harrison, Clare, Rhodes, Bentley, Wixom Lake and Secord Lake.

March is the beginning of the Spring selling season, as our seasonal market is typically from April-November. Personally I have had the busiest winter in 9 years however! The Clare/Gladwin Board of Realtors currently has 929 homes for sale through the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) and 121 of those were new to the market in March 2010. The number of new listings almost doubled from last month letting us clearly know that it is the time of year to put your listing on the market! The average asking price of the homes currently on the market is $121,124 and the average days on market for those homes has been 328 days. These stats are only slightly different than the last 8 months clarifying my theory that the Gladwin, Michigan real estate market conditions are stable! Residential asking prices range from $9,900 - $749,900.

During the month of March we saw 43 homes sell/close in Gladwin, Michigan. This is 17 more than February! The average asking price was $56,895. The average sales price was $50,448 and the average days on market for these homes was 245 days. The sellers received an average of 88.7% of their asking price.

40 homes expired from the market unsold in March in Gladwin. The main reason homes don't sell during their listing period is that they were priced incorrectly for the real estate market conditions and or condition of the home. In any market it is imperative that a listing be priced as competitively as possible for its condition in order to have the best chance of selling. To learn more about why homes epxire from the market visit this link to a page on my website.

If you're thinking about selling your Gladwin area home one very important fact to know about your real estate market conditions is the absorption rate. The absorption rate will tell you how long it will take for the current inventory of homes in Gladwin, Michigan to be absorped by the market if no other homes come on the market. The absorption rate for March 2010 is 1.8 years! This number has decreased and is working its way to a more balanced market each month. If you want your Gladwin, Michigan area home sold you need to know this number to help you price your home accordingly.

Are you thinking about making Gladwin County, Michigan your new home? Gladwin County is home to both Wixom Lake and Secord Lake! Are you thinking about taking advantage of the great interest rates and affordable prices to buy your own slice of Northern Michigan Heaven? Contact me today and lets gets started! I know the area very well and I know the market even better! You can call me at 989-429-2600, email me at or visit my website.

Low Inflation Benefits Mortgage Markets

This week's economic data and comments from Fed officials painted a picture of a gradually improving economy with very low inflation. March Core CPI inflation rose at a tame 1.1% annual rate. This economic environment is favorable for bond markets, and mortgage rates ended the week a little lower.
While mortgage rates have dropped over the last two weeks, the move lower has not been a straight line down. Mortgage rates have been fluctuating sharply from day to day, and even hour to hour this month. Volatility in mortgage markets has increased significantly since the end of the Fed's MBS purchase program on March 31. With the Fed steadily in the market in just one direction (purchasing, but never selling), other investors were generally reluctant to take opposing positions. Now that the Fed is on the sidelines, the market has returned to more normal conditions, meaning that investors freely react to economic news and changing sentiment.
This week's housing sector reflected improvement. March Housing Starts exceeded expectations, rising 2% from February to the highest level since November 2008. Housing Starts were 20% higher than one year ago. Building Permits, a leading indicator, also beat the consensus forecast. The April NAHB Homebuilder confidence index jumped to the highest level since September 2009 as home buyers take advantage of tax credits set to expire soon. For more information or free mortgage advice, please e-mail Keith Gillow at:

Tight Lines,


New Listing - 5291 Wildwood, Gladwin, Michigan

front view of home for sale full front view of 5291  wildwood

5291 WILDWOODin Gladwin Michigan is a secluded home or up north get away on 10 wooded acres. With thousands of acres of state land nearby and beautiful all sports Secord Lake just down the road there is plenty of recreation to experience. Hunt on your own property, ORV (Gladwin allows the use of ORV's on road sides and there are many trails available), or enjoy the scenic peaceful surroundings. This 3 BR, 2BA home is spacious and has barely been lived in. Wood burning fireplace in living room, and huge master suite. New septic and well in 2005.

Seclusion surrounding woods surrounding woods

Are you thinking about making Gladwin County, Michigan your new home? Gladwin County is home to both Wixom Lake and Secord Lake! Are you thinking about taking advantage of the great interest rates and affordable prices to buy your own slice of Northern Michigan Heaven? Contact me today and lets gets started! I know the area very well and I know the market even better! You can call me at 989-429-2600, email me at or visit my website.

Finding the Right Home!

With all the choices in the Beaverton, Michigan and Gladwin, Michigan market, or really anywhere how do you go about finding the right home? It seems the more research you do the more alternatives you discover.

It's important to visualize your needs and plan ahead. Know what you want in a home, what's important to you, and what you can live without. Many buyers start out with champagne taste and a beer budget , so it's important to be realistic.

Where and what you buy will affect you for as long as you live in the house. Get your priorities in order before you start looking or even talk to a real estate broker.

For first time buyers this is a new experience, so it's especially important to do your homework. If you currently own a home, you know exactly what's lacking. You may need another bedroom or bathroom, or a good school nearby.

First decide where you want to live. A big part of the answer hinges on where and how you earn your living. You should practice the commute before you make a commitment.

People with children have other major considerations: school and safety. With school of choice in Michigan you can send your children to whichever school you choose, assuming you can easily arrange transportation. On the other hand, a lavish public school system may indicate high local real estate taxes. Check them out.

Obviously, lifestyle is an important consideration. People who frequently dine out, go dancing, attend shows probably belong in the city or nearby. People who enjoy the outdoors, hunting, fishing, water sports belong near the woods or water. In other words, make sure you're in close proximity to the things that matter most.

It used to be that homes came in limited variety, but today, you have many choices. In addition to the traditional single-family home, you can buy a townhouse or condo.

Affordability can be a factor not only in the type of housing, but whether it's new or an existing home. Older houses often have fine woodwork or interesting nooks and crannies not normally found in new homes. They generally sit on lots or land with mature trees and grown bushes.

Brand new homes may cost more, but you can make many more decisions on amenities, colors, carpeting and fixtures. Make sure you're dealing with a reputable builder, and have an attorney review all documents.

Selecting a real estate professional is an important first step in beginning your search. Ask for personal recommendations to find an individual who is knowledgeable about the neighborhood (preferabbly lives within the community) and has access to the local Multiple Listing Service. Make sure you feel confident about his or her ability, knowledge and skills. Understand the business relationship that you establish between you.

Loose is one of more than 50,000 members of the Real Estate Buyers Agent Council (REBAC) of theNATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS, who have attained the Accredited Buyers Representative (ABR) designation. As the world's largest association of real estate professionals focusing specifically on representing the real estate buyer, REBAC is "The Voice for Buyer Representation," with more than 50,000 active real estate professional members of the organization throughout the world.

If you are hoping to find the right home for you and your family in the Beaverton, Michigan, Gladwin, Michigan or surrounding areas please contact me today via email at, via cell phone at 989-429-2600, or visit my website at I look forward to providing you "The Right Result!"

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Kalkaska National Trout Festival

Kalkaska's 74th annual National Trout Festival is kicking off next week and runs from April 21st through April 25th. This year's theme is Trout Fever and is always held the last week-end of April to coincide with Opening Day of Trout Fishing in the State of Michigan but of course also in Kalkaska County. The Trout Festival's Mission is to bring community, family and business together to celebrate the heritage of our Natural Resources, Trout Fishing and Sportsmanship. We pride ourselves in promoting environmental education and the arts through entertainment.

Kalkaska is the First Festival every year in Northern Michigan and with the support and help of numerous volunteers and the community, the Village has been spiffed up and cleaned and waiting for thousands of visitors to see how dedicated this woodsy little town is to welcoming sportsman and sportswomen to the abundance of outdoor activity we offer in addition to fabulous Trout streams. This year's schedule offers something for everyne including but not limited to Children's Trout Fishing Contest; Classic Car Show; Flea Market; Grand Royale Parade; Trout Run; and Taste of Trout. Please visit the official website for the National Trout Festival for a full Schedule of Events and Times.

While you are in the area take some time to drive around and see some of the fabulous lakes in Kalkaska County - Big Blue, Bear Lake, Manistee Lake, Starvation Lake in addition to all the other 86 lakes in our county. We have all season recreation from fishing and boating to snowmobiling on the Blue Bear Trail and downhill skiing at Crystal Mountain, Boyne Mountain or Shanty Creek. If you are interested in waterfront listings please go to our website and tour all the fabulous listings or contact Mary Janik, your Kalkaska County Waterfront Specialist to assist or answer any questions you might have. Happy Fishing!!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Camping Season is Upon Us

As spring arrives in Northern Michigan, one of my favorite sights to see is the campers coming out of storage. Seems many of my neighbors in Leelanau County love to camp as much as I do! I grew up camping with my family in tents, campers and hike- in cabins. The joy of camping still hits me every time we load up and head out. I love the camping life; the only thing that needs to be done is to have fun. Dishes can wait, grilling is king and campfires are mesmerizing. Not to mention the marshmallows.
Leelanau County has a variety of campgrounds to suite every camper. Some of the best rustic hike in tent camping can be done on the Manitou Islands. These islands are accessible only by ferry boat out of Leland. If you like the campground setting, but would like to “rough it” then perhaps the D.H. Day Campground in the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore or Leelanau State Park at the tip of the peninsula would be the best options. For those campers who like to have full hookups and amenities while camping, my personal favorite in Leelanau County is Leelanau RV Park in Lake Leelanau. The campground is the cleanest I have ever seen, and is right on beautiful Lake Leelanau. Fun activities throughout the summer allow for even more fun for the kids. Leelanau Pines is another campground with Lake Leelanau frontage some sites have full hookup options.
With so many camping options in Leelanau County available, everyone can find what they are looking for in a camping experience. While you are here, check out all Leelanau County has to offer – water, woods, wine, culture, and more water!

Monday, April 5, 2010

Mortgage Rates Rise After Jobs Data

Stronger than expected Employment data and the end of the Fed's MBS purchase program were negative for mortgage markets. Mortgage rates ended the week at the highest levels since January.
Investors viewed Friday's Employment report as positive for the economy, which means it was bad news for mortgage markets, and mortgage rates climbed after its release. Against a consensus forecast of 200K, the economy added 162K jobs in March, the highest level since March 2007. The Unemployment Rate remained at 9.7%. While the headline number fell a little short, other aspects of the data displayed a larger degree of unexpected strength. Hiring of census workers, a temporary boost, added just 48K jobs, which was far less than expected. Revisions to data from prior months added 62K jobs. The separate employment survey used to calculate the unemployment rate, which includes smaller companies, showed a higher level of job gains in March.
To support the economy, the Fed has purchased almost $1.25 trillion of MBS since the start of 2009, but the MBS purchase program ended on March 31. Forecasts for the impact on mortgage rates of reduced demand for MBS varied from slight to as much as a one percent rise. While mortgage rates rose this week, yields in other bond markets posted comparable increases, meaning that the effect of the end of the MBS purchase program was close to the lower end of the estimated range this week. For more information on current mortgage rates or a free consultation, please contact me at: or call: 231.946.6300.

Tight Lines,


Thursday, April 1, 2010

Au Sable Holy Water

There's something magical about this legendary stretch of the Au Sable referred to as the "Holy Water". Located downstream and east of the city of Grayling, the Holy Water begins at Burton's Landing and flows for approximately nine miles to Wakeley Bridge. Gliding and gurgling through the pristine forest, the river offers the opportunity to experience some of the best fly fishing east of the Mississippi. 

155 Black Bear Trail ~ $259,900 ~ Au Sable River

This angler's and nature lover's retreat is located on the upper half of the Au Sable "Holy Water". It's log cabin style structure is in perfect harmony with the rustic setting along the river's bank.

With 205' of frontage, one can enjoy the view of this majestic river from the large bank of windows from the cabin interior. The cabin has an attached side deck for outdoor entertaining and a bank side dock for convenient access to the river. The interior of this cabin exudes more up north charm with it's knotty pine interior, wood burning fireplace and hardwood floors. The living area includes two bedrooms, full bath, kitchen with appliances, living room and more.
Additionally on the property you'll enjoy a guest cabin, perfect for visitors or a place to enjoy your hobbies. A great place to send the boys to play poker! The property also includes a three car garage to store all the toys that come with being up north. The current owners call this retreat "The Bourbon Fly". You can claim that name today or create a new one with your own legacy! You can get additional details on this charming property by going to Home Waters Recreational Real Estate. Better yet, come see this property for yourself. For a guided tour, contact Mark Bear for an appointment: bear@homewaters or call 989-889-5037.

Tight Lines!

NEW LIST! Acreage with Pole Barn!

Nature at it's finest! This beautifully wooded 11+acre parcel is located just east of Traverse City in Williamsburg. Located in an area of fine homes and at the end of a private road. The parcel is heavily wooded with mature hardwoods and pines (possibly offering some timber value) and is bordered by state land on two sides (east and south). A 32 x 40 pole barn (with electric) is already in place and awaiting you and your toys! Snowmobiling and hunting can be had right out your back door. Lakes, trails and other recreational opportunities are nearby. Whether you are looking for a place to build your dream home or just a place to escape to on the weekends, this just might be the playground you're looking for. Contact for more information.