Associated Real Estate Agent Spotlight: Meet Wendy Finley-Blackburn!

Each month, we’re highlighting one of the amazing real estate agents here at Associated Real Estate! Meet Wendy Finley-Blackburn!

Wendy Finley-Blackburns

  1. Where did you grow up? Tell us about your family!

I grew up in the San Fernando and Santa Clarita Valleys.  I have 5 brothers. Growing up we had horses, milk goats, chicken and ducks.  As a child I raised guinea pigs and sold them to a local pet store.  We always had animals my entire life.

My husband and I have a blended family of 4 adult children, 9 grandchildren and 3 great-grandchildren. We also have a donkey, horse and 2 dogs! We love the open spaces and the beauty of Tehachapi.  We volunteer at the Tehachapi Railroad Depot Museum and for our church.

  1. What’s your favorite thing about Tehachapi?

When I come back to Tehachapi after traveling, I feel peace and serenity.  I know I am “home”.  There is beauty in every season.

  1. What is your number one piece of advice for someone trying to sell their house?

Fix everything before listing it for sale.  The better it looks, the faster it will sell.

  1. What do you think is the most important thing for clients to know about buying a house?

There is no “perfect” home.  But you can make any home your own.

  1. Where is your favorite place in the world?

I haven’t been there yet!

  1. What do you love about being a real estate agent?

Meeting new people and helping them reach their home ownership and home sales goals.

Want to work with Wendy? Contact her here!

Where to Get Fit in Tehachapi!

Where to Get Fit in Tehachapi

If you’re like a lot of people, you might have a New Year’s Resolution to be healthier in 2019. Lucky for all of us, Tehachapi has tons of great places to help you get fit this year! Here’s a round-up of some of our favorite local spots to get active and be healthy!

Health Clubs
Tehachapi Fitness
The Gym

CrossFit/Boot Camp
Indian Hills Crossfit

Specialty
Macias Boxing Team
Garage Gym Barbell

Yoga/Pilates
Morning Light Yoga Studio

We want to know! Where’s your favorite place to work out in Tehachapi? Comment below and tell us!

Five Kitchen Improvements to Make Before You List Your Home

Planning on selling your home this year?

Here are five kitchen improvements you can make  to help with resell!

kitchen improvements

  1. Instead of replacing your cabinets (which can be expensive) brighten up your kitchen by sanding and repainting your existing cabinets. White cabinets make a kitchen feel clean, modern and clutter free.
  2. If your kitchen feels outdated, replacing the hardware on the cabinets can make a big difference. And it’s easy!
  3. Add a “wow “ factor. Replace your faucet with a newer version with handy features. Or maybe add a pull out pantry, under-cabinet lighting, or new pendent lighting to stop potential buyers in their tracks (for the right reasons)!
  4. Freshen up the walls with a new coat of paint. Since you want your kitchen to feel as large as possible, stick with a light paint color to brighten up the space. Whites and neutrals are a safe choice.
  5. Declutter your counter tops, organize your pantry, and make the room as functional as possible. Potential buyers want to be able to envision themselves using the space. Make it easy for them to do so by keeping the kitchen as organized and streamlined as possible!

Have questions about what kitchen improvements you should make  before you list it? Let an expert take a look at it! We’d love to see your space and offer up suggestions when you are getting ready to list. Contact us to get started!

Thank You for an Amazing 2018!

As we close out the end of 2018, we wanted to take a moment to thank YOU, our fantastic clients. In the past year, we have been able to help so many of you find your dream home, and many of you sell your home – quickly and painlessly. We are so proud to be a part of the Tehachapi community and are incredibly grateful to be able to help our neighbors with such a big life decision. Thank you for trusting us with your real estate needs!

We have big plans for 2019 (like more community events!) and hope you’ll stay connected with us even if buying or selling a home in the next year is not in your plans. As always, if you had a great experience with Associated Real Estate in 2018, we’d appreciate if you told your friends and family about us! We’d love to help them buy or sell their home.

We live here. We work here. We love it here.

We are your local, family-owned Tehachapi real estate team, and we thank you for your business! Here’s to a new year!

Associated Real Estate Team

4 Easy Ways to Increase Your Home’s Energy Efficiency – All Year Long!

Looking for easy ways to save money and energy in your home throughout the year? Here are 4 simple things you can do (each season!) to make sure your home is as energy efficient as possible!

Winter

Change (or clean) your furnace air filters. This is the quickest and easiest way to improve your unit’s efficiency and improves your air quality. Not sure how to do it? Here are some easy instructions: https://bit.ly/2Gziupw

Spring

Use nature to your advantage. The spring is the perfect time to utilize the mild temperatures outside and the abundance of sunshine. Turn off your AC unit and open the windows when it’s warm to catch a breeze inside. Open your window treatments to let the sunshine warm your house when it’s cool.

Energy Efficiency

Summer

Switch the direction of your ceiling fans. Save money on you electricity bill by letting your ceiling fans do some of the hard work in the heat of the summer! You’ll want the blades to circulate in a counter clockwise motion to create a breeze. This one is as simple as pushing a button!

Fall

Check weather stripping on windows and doors. Before the weather gets too cool, check to make sure that your home is properly sealed. Leaks in your weather stripping will increase your energy bill and make for a drafty home. Check out easy ways to check your weather stripping here: https://bit.ly/2ECRgfi

What other things do you do you save energy? Comment below and let us know!

Associated Real Estate Agent Spotlight: Meet Adriana Ghorbani!

Each month, we’re highlighting one of the amazing real estate agents here at Associated Real Estate!

Meet Adriana Ghorbani!

Adrianna Ghor

Where did you grow up? Tell us about your family!

I grew up in San Gabriel Valley and moved to Tehachapi in 2012. I’ve been married for 20 years and have three children.

Have you always been in real estate or did you have a different career prior to becoming a real estate agent?

Prior to becoming a real estate agent, I was in the escrow business for over 15 years. I joined the Associated Real Estate team in 2016!

What’s your favorite thing about Tehachapi?

I love the small town hospitality!

What is your number one piece of advice for someone trying to sell their house?

Before you put your home on the market, finish up small projects and complete the minor repairs you’ve been putting off.

What do you think is the most important thing for clients to know about buying a house?

Be sure to visit the neighborhood during different times of the day to really get a feel for what it’s like!

Where is your favorite place in the world?

Fiji! I can’t wait to go back.

What do you love about being a real estate agent?

My favorite thing is being able to build lasting relationships with my clients.

Want to work with Adriana? Contact her here!

Where to volunteer in Tehachapi this holiday season!

The hustle and bustle of the holidays combined with the stress of finding the perfect gifts, planning the perfect meal and attending every holiday event can really take the joy out of the season. An easy (and meaningful!) way to get back to what the holidays are really supposed to be about is to volunteer. Giving your time and talents to an organization that means a lot to you is a win-win for everyone. Here are some of our favorite organizations to volunteer at in Tehachapi this holiday season!

  1. Tehachapi Valley Recreation & Park District: Protect what you love! The Park District has a lot of ways to volunteer including trail cleanup and landscape maintenance. Learn more and sign up here: https://bit.ly/2G4SwtT
  2. Have a heart for animals? Marley’s Mutts Dog Rescue is striving to make all dog shelters in Kern County “no-kill”. They rescue, rehabilitate, train and re-home dogs that need it most. Volunteer or donate items to their ranch. Sign up to volunteer and see their wish list here: https://bit.ly/2FYhACK
  3. The Mission at Kern County provides shelter, food, clothing and support to our neighbors who need help. You can volunteer at The Mission, donate items, or create a Care Kit to distribute to those who are living on the street. Find out more here: https://bit.ly/2Qd4Ug5
  4. Did you know that you can volunteer to transport and/or care for sick and injured birds? The Pacific Waterfowl Rescue needs volunteers to help rescuing, rehabilitating and rehoming domestic ducks and geese. You can even adopt one! Find out more here: https://bit.ly/2Pk6kQJ
  5. The Family Life Pregnancy Center of Tehachapi trains volunteers year round to help those in our community who need support when facing a pregnancy. Learn more about what they do here: http://familylifepc.org/

Know of some more awesome ways to give back this season? Comment below and let us know!

Its the Season to Give Back

Common regrets of first-time home buyers (and how we can all learn from them!)

It goes without saying that purchasing your first home is one the biggest milestones in your life. There are so many things to think about and sometimes (without the help of an awesome real estate agent!) the process can get overwhelming. Here are some common regrets of first-time home buyers and how to avoid them when purchasing your own home – whether it’s your first one or not!

SoldSign

  1. Not being realistic about their budget. Sure, you may be approved for a monthly mortgage payment that seems doable – but have you considered closing costs, HOA fees, utility bills, and home maintenance down the road? If you’ve considered all of these expenses AND have factored them into your monthly budget, then your dream house might be the perfect fit.
  1. Caring more about the square footage instead of the layout. When you’ve never lived in a home before, the square footage may seem like the most important thing to you. But is the space livable? If the square footage is spread out amongst a lot of smaller rooms, you might find that an open floor plan (even with less square footage) would have been a better fit for you.
  1. Not loving the neighborhood. Having good neighbors that you have fun with and trust is the best. Take the time before you move in to visit the house and drive around the neighborhood more than once (and at different times of the day!). Are there young families walking around the block pushing strollers and walking their dogs? Are there loud parties happening on Friday nights? Is no one ever outside? These all might be indicators of the type of neighborhood you would be a part of. Knock on the doors of the neighbors next door and try to get a feel for the neighborhood before you make an offer.
  2. Thinking about the NOW instead of the FUTURE. The house that you want to purchase might be the perfect fit for you now, but where do you envision your life in 5 years? Will you need extra rooms for possible children down the road? Is it a possibility that your aging parent might have to move in with you? Taking some time to really think about how long you plan to live in the house and what life events might take place while you’re there, will ensure that you pick the right home for the long-term.

No matter if this is your first home or your third home in Tehachapi, Bear Valley Springs, Golden Hills, or Stallion Springs, we’d love to help you find your dream house! Contact us to schedule a time to talk.

Supporting our Tehachapi Small Businesses – The EASY Ways You Can Show Your Love!

While Amazon may be the obvious way to finish your holiday shopping in record breaking time, Tehachapi is full of wonderful small businesses that could use your love during the holiday season! With Small Business Saturday happening this weekend, we wanted to remind you of some easy ways to support Tehachapi small businesses.

  1. Shop local! The obvious way to support our local businesses is to do your holiday shopping with them. You’ll find some unique gifts, have fun meeting our local shop owners, and put money directly back into our community. Make a day of it and grab lunch at one of our family-owned restaurants too!
  2. When you love something, share it! Spread the word about your favorite places. Tell your family and friends about your favorite stores. Include a business card of the place you purchased their gift with their present so they know where it came from! If they loved your gift, they’ll spread the word too!
  3. Write a review. Local businesses (like ours!) depend on online reviews to help find new customers. If you love a business, write them a quick review on Facebook, Google or Yelp! All it takes is a couple minutes to have a big impact for a small business!
  4. Get social! Take a picture of your shopping excursion, tag the business (or check-in) and post it on Facebook or Instagram.

Shopping

We love Tehachapi and we love our fellow local businesses. What are your favorite local businesses? We’d love to hear! Comment below with the ones you love. Happy shopping!

PS: If you want to work with a local real estate company, you’ve come to the right place! Contact us to set up an appointment!

Associated Real Estate Agent Spotlight: Meet Lindsey Redera!

Each month, we’re highlighting one of the amazing real estate agents here at Associated Real Estate!

Meet Lindsey Redera!

Lindsey Redera

  1. Where did you grow up? Tell us about your family!
    I was born in Manila, Philippines but came to the U.S. when I was only 6 months old. I grew up in Reno, NV. My mom brought my brother and I to Reno by herself and raised us until my dad was able to be petitioned to come to Reno as well. My parents and brother and sister in law and 2 nephews are all still in Reno.
  2. Have you always been in real estate or did you have a different career prior to becoming a real estate agent?
    My professional history was working for the Department of Homeland Security as a Federal
    Contract Officer for 11 years before I gofinto Real Estate.
  3. Any hobbies?
    My favorite hobbies are playing with anything with a motor in it. Going off-roading in my truck, or riding my ATV’s or going jet skiing.
  4. Why do you love real estate?
    I’ve always enjoyed helping people and now being in real estate and being able to be involved in finding that perfect home for my clients is a great . feeling and something that is very important to me.
  5. What accomplishment are you most proud of?
    I think for me my biggest accomplishment was getting my Real Estate license. Never did I ever think I would get into Real Estate especially at such a later age in life. A good majority of people are afraid to make big changes especially mid-life, but for me life changed and so I saw a different opportunity and took it.

Want to contact Lindsey about buying or selling your house? Contact her here!

It IS possible to sell your home during the holidays!

As we all know, the holidays are fast approaching! But just because this is a busy time of year for most people, it doesn’t mean that it is impossible to sell your home during November and December. Thinking about putting your home on the market before the end of the year? It is possible to sell your home during the holidays!

Your home is probably at its most beautiful during the holidays. But if you want to make a good impression on potential buyers, keep your decorations to a minimum. When selling your home during any time of the year, you want to keep your rooms clutter-free and organized. A few tasteful holiday decorations can make your home feel cozy. Too many decorations on every surface can make your home appear small and messy.

It is possible to sell your home during the holidays!

Make sure you are hiring a real estate agent you can count on! If you want to try to sell your home quickly around the holiday season, you need to make sure you have an agent that is committed to you and will work hard for you, even during this busy time of year. Unsure of who to hire? Ask your family and friends for recommendations!

If the weather outside is frightful, let your online listing do the work for you! When most buyers are doing their home searches online anyway, high quality photos highlighting your home’s best features during ALL seasons (including the spring and summer) can be the thing that sells your home!

Buyers that are looking for a home during the holiday season are probably highly motivated. While there might not be as many buyers during this time of the year, the ones that are looking are most likely very serious and are looking to make an offer. Make sure you have the best real estate agent in your corner to help you close the deal. Contact us if you’re ready to sell your home this holiday season!

 

Five Reasons You Want to Raise Your Family in Tehachapi

Tehachapi is an amazing place to have a family. With tons of things to do, beautiful weather, great schools, and friendly neighbors, it’s a great place to be! Here are our top five reasons you want to raise your family in Tehachapi!

  1. The Weather
    Called “The Land of Four Seasons” Tehachapi has beautiful weather all year round. Warm sunny days in the summer (but not too hot!), a gorgeous autumn and even moderate snow fall in the winter. Living in Tehachapi, your children will get to fully experience every season – and the fun activities that come along with them!

Ice cream

2. Affordable Place to Live

The average sale price for a home in California is $485,800 while the average sale price in Tehachapi is just $276,300! Less money spent on housing = more money available to invest in your family!

Bike Riding in Tehachapi

3. Community Events

From the Farmers Market, to Trunk-or-Treat, to our big All American 4th of July Hotdog Festival, there is ALWAYS something fun and family-friendly happening in Tehachapi! For the full list of year-round activities, check out the Tehachapi event calendar.

4. Healthy Lifestyle Encouraged!

The residents of Tehachapi are active and for good reason! We’ve got tons of great hiking, mountain biking and equestrian trails, fishing and golfing. Our beautiful weather lends itself to year-round outdoor activities and there are plenty of them! And if the weather is having an off-day, there are even 3 gyms in our community to get your energy out, indoors. If raising your kids to love an active, healthy lifestyle is important to you, then Tehachapi is your place!

TehachapiTree

5. Friendly People

We may be biased, but the people you meet in Tehachapi are some of the friendliest people around. Always willing to lend a hand and offer a smile, we promise that you will feel the warmth of this special place right away. Raising your family in Tehachapi is a joy.

Family dinner in Tehachapi

We are so proud of our community and would be excited to welcome you as our neighbor. To schedule your appointment to speak with one of our local, Tehachapi-loving agents, click here. We hope to see your family in Tehachapi soon!

Current Homes For Sale in Tehachapi

4 Last Minute Halloween Decorations for the Exterior of Your Home

Boo! Did Halloween sneak up on you like a black cat in an alley? It’s not too late to get in the holiday spirit with these cheap and easy decorations for the outside of your home before the 31st!

  1. Use construction paper and streamers to turn your front door into a silly monster!

MonsterDoors

Click here for instructions. 

2. Pull out your wheelbarrow, fill it with dirt and put skeleton bones sticking out of the dirt. For this one, you’ll just need to deconstruct a store-bought skeleton. Easy as that!

Wheelbarrow

Click here for instructions.

3. Turn black construction paper into creepy window silhouettes! Keep them simple with bats and ghosts, or make them elaborate with witches and whole spooky (or silly!) scenes.

WindowDecor (2)

Click here for instructions. 

4. Ready for the easiest idea yet? Switch out your normal light bulbs in your exterior lighting with orange or purple light bulbs! Instant spookiness!

HalloweenLightbulbs

Have a fun and safe Halloween!