Thursday, March 28, 2013

Climate for People Moving to Huntsville Alabama

That's right this time, we decided to take a different approach and talk about Climate/Weather.  Now we, not being meteorologists, may not have the best expertise on the subject.  However, we do have a great deal of experience like many people who live in the Tennessee Valley and Huntsville Alabama in particular.

Just in recent events, we saw the snowstorms of Winter 2010/2011 which dropped 17 inches in Huntsville that season.  We saw tornadoes that raked through the Tennessee Valley in April of 2011, as well as the strength in the core of the community to come together to clean up and rebuild on the grassroots neighborhood scale. We have seen the most rare occurrence of downtown Huntsville being flooded in June of 2003, when almost the rest of the city was for the most part untouched (with the exception of several creek areas).  But there also have been everyday events which still stand out: We have seen gorgeous Summers for the downtown series called Concert in the Park year after year.  Driving over the ridge of Cecil Ashburn Drive heading into Hampton Cove on a late spring morning watching the sun pierce through the clouds and drape onto the lush green grasses and forested trees of Hampton Cove.  Not only serene but breathtaking that something that beautiful can happen in our very own backyard.

These important events create lasting memories that we carry with us in our lives.
(Photo Taken by The Carol Jacobs Team)

Spring and Summer are usually mild with average high temperatures of 60-80 degrees in Spring and 80+ in Summer.  Usually August tends to be the most troublesome month with high temps sometimes hitting 90+ with high humidity leading to a heat index that really climbs.  Sprinkled in are pop up thundershowers and every now and again a squall line of thunderstorms.  Other than that these seasons are filled with mostly blue skies and a feeling of comfort.  Spring is when the area puts on the Spring Tour of Homes which this year will be April 27th - 28th & May 4th - 5th.  These newly constructed homes will be available for viewing these two weekends.  If you would like more information when it becomes available please email or call 256-651-7444.

(Photo taken by The Carol Jacobs Team)

(Photo taken by The Carol Jacobs Team)

Autumn and Winter are two months of which you could say have different stances.  Temps during this time sees average lows gradually sinking from 50s in Autumn to lower 30s in the heart of Winter. Autumn has the last gasp of possible severe weather before a mostly quiet period of Winter in which precipitation reaches a low point.  Autumn is best known for being the season in which football season is in full swing, and the night temperatures are still pleasant to go to in t-shirt and shorts.  Winter is the quiet month, but at rare times gulf coast precipitation becomes locked in and is sitting idle over the Tennessee Valley when a strong cold front comes down from the Northwest causing the moisture to condense and fall on the beautiful lands that is the Huntsville Alabama Metro Area.  As we stated before though, we're not meteorologists, we can only tell you what we experience and what we can remember.

(Photo taken by The Carol Jacobs Team)

Today's Tidbit:  We have some of the best meteorologists in the country to help us with our weather, as well as weather planning.  They are the ones we rely on to plan our schedules, and when severe weather happens they are who we rely on to protect our clients when we happen to have them with us at the time.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Investment Properties and Foreclosure Buying in the Huntsville Alabama area

Right now there still is a fantastic opportunity to buy foreclosures and investment properties.  While not as many properties in the foreclosures as there used to be.  There is still a good portion in which people have overlooked in trying to find the most dirt cheap property to buy.  This is the next few tiers up, the ones that look in great condition with a bargain price for the client.  There are quite a few properties on the market which are in top condition with not many years under their belt.  Some may need a little work but for their currently listing price someone is going to walk away a winner.  Please bear with me as I have a few examples to show you.

2941 Hampton Cove Way
A large full brick house over Five thousand square feet with a fantastic interior and on 1/3 acre lot for just over $300,000.  Take a look through the pictures in the link and see the rooms for yourself and if you want to tour the home yourself just call me up.  You know the number 256-651-7444.

106 Rain Oak Drive
A good sized full brick home for a small price, what could make you feel better.  This great curb appeal ranch house is going for just over $130,000 with over Two thousand square feet.  This empty four bedroom home sits on a 105 x 200 lot in Harvest in the Carroll Station subdivision.  Once again the pictures are available for you to view to show that its in great condition.

101 Bellevue Drive
What is there to say about Bellevue? Its a two story brick house with over 2500 square feet and just under $110,000 in the wonderful Meridianville subdivision of Bainbridge.

120 Kensington Drive
Ah elegance in Madison.  Priced under $300,000, this two story brick home comes with five spacious bedrooms in the Woodfield subdivision.  A completely darling house with over Three thousand square feet.

9003 Brookfield Circle
Although a bit older, this house is wonderful at over Two thousand square feet and just over $150,000.  Three bedrooms and three full baths at this price in the Valley Bend subdivision is quite an eye opener.

These homes show there is good opportunity out there for people who are interested in buying a foreclosure or are seeking a good investment property.  All it takes is the right real estate agent, a good determination to find what you're looking for, and the wherewithall to say "I'll take that one,".  Because truth be told, these homes that are in great condition don't last that long at all.  They're here one day and gone the next.  If you would like to begin your search or have something in mind, or even questions don't hesitate to call me 256-651-7444.

Today's Tidbit:  Many homes do require a bit of home repair, but still others feel like they need a bulldozer.  Always be careful with homes that need a large investment of repair work, these homes are often not worth it as the expense of the work outweighs either the low price or possible resale later on.  Our team feels that warning clients on properties such as these are a priority.

Huntsville Alabama Metro Area

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Huntsville Alabama's Roadways and Waterways

Nicole Emmett of has come out with a fantastic article on which Huntsville roadways are the most dangerous.  This is a great article for the county at large and should be taken as advisement on how to change the flow routes to make the roadways less dangerous as well as less crowded.  She does a good job with the numbers:

UAH Finishes 2nd in the Southeast Regional Concrete Canoe race to Florida.  UAH still advances to Nationals though which will take place in Illinois.

If anyone is thinking about their plans to head back to the rivers and lakes, remember to make sure all your boating/fishing licenses are in order and safety plans in place.  Better to do it now than later.

Today's Tidbit:  The two tornadoes that touched down this past weekend shows that spring has arrived and should not be taken lightly as a sign we can relax from slick roads.  Now is the time when we are in that in between stage when we get hit by unsettled fronts which can bring cool air from the north with some precipitation as well as heat from the gulf making the atmosphere more unsettled for severe weather.

Huntsville Metro Area Homes

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Of Conventions and Expanding Economy aka Jams & Jobs

A possible new convention could be headed to Huntsville if the stars align.  This time around the convention will be the 2013 Social Media Tourism Symposium.  The event planners currently have a facebook competition to determine where the event will be held.  Huntsville currently had the lead in the preliminary voting, but now they have pit city against city in a tournament style.  Huntsville will be put up against flatland's own Indianapolis.  Didn't even know they had a major tech center there?

Huntsville/Madison County Convention & Visitors Bureau President and CEO Judy Ryals says an estimated $180,000 could come into the local economy.  While this is not a big number, it does provide more exposure and evidence for Huntsville to be one of the leading tech centers in the nation.

To Vote for Huntsville in the Social Media Tourism Symposium Event on Facebook!!

The economy of Madison County is continuing to expand as 6 new companies opened: Alphaport Inc,
Genocent, IDAir, Sierra Nevada Corporation, Transomic Technologies, and Usfalcon.  Combining these with the expanding counties the total employment growth of new and expanding companies are 1,346 jobs and $236,077,749 worth of investment.

The REPORT for all counties in Alabama including new and expanding companies.

Today's Tidbit:  Growth occurs when employees create new companies because they can believe they can do better.  It occurs when conventions come into the city and visitors realize what a great place they're coming to.  It happens when word of mouth spreads from visitors and our own local populace when they visit other places in the nation.  Growth in the Huntsville Alabama Metro Area doesn't just happen.  It happens because we have great quality of life, people willing to take a chance and start new businesses, and local people who have a vision to create, imagine, and build.

Huntsville Metro Area Homes

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

A Few Events for Spring 2013 in Huntsville, Alabama

With the city waking up from the Winter doldrums, there are many events on tap for the Spring.  Our team usually hits the field with so many events to visit.  Some below are charged admission and some are free.  If you do not see something you know of that is happening during Spring be sure to add it to the comments section below for others to see!

Huntsville Museum of Art: Rock and Roll Photography
3/01/2013 - 03/31/2013
Phone for information: (256) 535-4350

The Heart of Dixie Orchid Society's annual show & sale
Wednesday, March 20 and Thursday, March 21 from 9 AM - 5 PM in the Huntsville Botanical Garden's Boeing Education Room.
More information at 256-230-5932

Easter Egg Hunt at Fleet Feet Sports:
Thursday, March 21, 2013, 5:30 PM – 7:30 PM. Fleet Feet 2722 Carl T Jones Dr SE Huntsville, AL 35802

American Freedom Festival Concert
At VBC Arena
March 22, 7.30PM
Phone: (256) 533-1953

Local Artist Market:
Local Artists will be selling their creations to the public.
Lowe Mill ARTS & Entertainment.
Saturday, March 23, 2013, 12:00 PM – 4:00 PM

US Space & Rocket Center Easter Egg & Meteorite Hunt:
Registration is required by March 19. Check in at Shuttle Park (the gate near the Space Shuttle; not the Davidson Center)
2-3 years old/ CHECK IN AT 10 a.m.          
4-6 years old/ CHECK IN AT 10:30 a.m.        
7-8 years old/ CHECK IN AT 11 a.m.                              
ADMISSION: Admission to Egg and Meteorite Hunt is $5 per child.
Saturday, March 23, 2013, 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM.
US Space & Rocket Center Easter Egg & Meteorite Hunt Page

An Evening w/ Garrison Keeler
At Von Braun Center Mark C. Smith Concert Hall.
Sunday, March 24, 2013, 3:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Broadway Theater League

Huntsville Botanical Gardens - Spring Festival of Flowers
Sunday March 31, 2013 - Tuesday April 30, 2013
Spring Plant Sale:

Members sale: April 18, 10 a.m.-7 p.m.;
Public Sale: April 19 & 20, 9 a.m.-6 p.m.; April 21. 12-5 p.m.

FREE Walking Tour of Historic Huntsville
4/06/2013, 10:00 AM
Address: Depart from Alabama Constitution Village on Gates Street Huntsville, AL 35801
Phone: (256) 533-5723

Panoply Arts Festival
4/26/2013 - 04/28/2013
Fri. 5-9 PM, Sat. 10 AM-9 PM & Sun. Noon-8
Address: Big Spring Park, Downtown Huntsville, AL 35801
Phone: (256) 519-2787

Today's Tidbit:  If you don't see any event that interests you here, you can go online, talk to friends and family or just walk around the neighborhood to find new activities or events, somewhere along the line something will peak your interest and remember to enjoy the new season!

Huntsville Metro Area Homes

Friday, March 15, 2013

Finance Side Info on Custom Home Builds?

Something we have not discussed is Custom Built Homes.  Good for some, not for all.  If you know what you're doing and have good advice you should be fine.

First, Home Construction Loans.  These are short term loans for the client to build a home.  The client usually puts 20% down on a construction loan.  It should be remembered by the client though that this loan is in their name not the builder, and given in a lump sum to be disbursed as construction progresses. In these types of Custom Build scenarios, banks wanting to limit their risk, check out the contractor and their references.

One of our co-workers who specializes in land for new construction says that land can be anywhere between $20K-$200K all depending on the location and size.  Factors influencing price can be hill side, mountain top, wooded/forested, flatland, etc.

Although many clients build for themselves and their unique tastes, they should always remember that their tastes are should be tempered in case of emergency and have to sell the home.  Resale should always be thought of as a possible future what if.  If worse comes to worse always make sure that it can be resold without difficulty.  Know what you can afford, do your research, get educated, don't go over your limit.  As always for help on who to get for a contractor/builder you can go find reviews or go to the BBB and see what their rating is.  Remember when you minimize your own risk, you maximize your future happiness and ease of mind.

Today's Tidbit:  Redstone Federal Credit Union will be opening a new Full Service branch on Redstone Arsenal at 5216 Mills Road, south of the new shoppette and near the child development center.  Redstone Federal Credit Union President and CEO Joseph H. Newberry states: "This new branch will allow us to provide more convenient service to Redstone Arsenal personnel.  The credit union was originally chartered to serve Redstone Arsenal so we have maintained a strong relationship with the arsenal, and are always looking for ways to better serve them."

Huntsville Metro Area Homes

Thursday, March 14, 2013

A Helpful Tool in Your Search for a Home in Huntsville, Alabama

Often times we need more information on properties, their surroundings as well as other factors.  For years now our group has used Huntsville's GIS Interactive Maps as an additional tool to help ourselves and clients.  It not only allows you to zoom into street level, but it also allows you to overlay different types of informational maps.  A great example would be to overlay warning sirens over subdivisions in Madison County.  To do this you click "More" in the top right hand corner, scroll down and check "warning sirens" then scroll up and hit "subdivisions in Madison County".  As you can see in that list that there are several different overlays that you can use for your own information gathering.  Also to the right of it is a "basemap" which will change how it looks including aerial and topographical maps.

I encourage you to play around with it for a bit and see what else you can find.  Its uses can stretch over a wide variety of life.

Today's Tidbit:  Remember to check for verification on this such as everything else, because we have a found a few errors in the past.  But most of the time its fairly accurate.

Huntsville Metro Area Homes

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Huntsville Alabama's New Waffle House and Army Contract

The Huntsville Historic Preservation Commission gave approval to the demolishing of the old Sonic drive-in and construction of a Waffle House on the edge of Old Town Historic District.  Mark Russell of the city council hopes that Waffle House will consider toning down their bright yellow signage to something that would fit in with Old Town's historic neighborhood.  Waffle House representative Joe Hoffman repudiated the request by saying that the company did not have to change its trademark because it fits with the historical guidelines of Old Town.  Without taking the advice under some consideration and immediately saying no gives a stance of arrogance by Joe Hoffman.  Sometimes its best to be graceful and not brutish when moving into someone else's neighborhood.

Alatech Inc and I3 (Integration Innovation Inc) both won contracts from the US Army to provide support to the U.S. Army Fires Center of Excellence in Fort Sill, Okla. and the development of training materials.  This contract is valued at 248 million dollars and looks to last through March of 2014.

Today's Tidbit: Remember the Huntsville Historic Preservation Commission has authorization on all changes to me made to properties as well as sets guidelines for properties within the Historical Districts of Huntsville Alabama.

Huntsville Metro Area Homes

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Huntsville Alabama Real Estate and Business Round Up

For lack of a better headline, that's what we came up with.  We are going to be talking about business, Alabama's growth in Huntsville and Madison County, and a tip on how to find known sinkholes seeing how that is in the news.

First let's begin with business, local company Raytheon gave 30 thousand dollars to the non-profit organization Free-2-Teach.  Free 2 Teach ensures that students and teachers have supplies for the classroom in Huntsville and Madison County.  Raytheon considers this an investment in the tech and sciences of the future.

NASA has narrowed down choices for a 350 million dollar contract for engineering services and products at Marshall Space Flight Center.  The two Huntsville companies are Teledyne Brown and Raytheon.

Released by, most areas of the Huntsville Metro Area is scheduled for heavy growth.  Here are short snippets of the findings:

South Huntsville is getting attention for a possible new Grissom High School as well as a regional branch library of the Huntsville Madison County Library in which would have between 30 and 40 thousand square feet.  But still eyes in the area are still looking at how to enhance the riverside along the Tennesee River with shops and restaurants.

West Huntsville, the newest and fastest growth in Metro Huntsville.  In the ten years from 2000 to 2010, this area which has been creeping like kudzu into Limestone County has achieved a growth rate of over 80%.  As land gets annexed & the homes built, people are coming in droves for the easy commute both to Redstone Arsenal as well as Huntsville International Airport.  With the south side of West Huntsville connecting to the Tennessee River and the other areas seeing empty land, the growth is scheduled to continue at a rapid pace.

East Huntsville has been one the fastest growing area of Metro Huntsville.  The wonderful area full of greenery and new beginning for Huntsville residents has seen six new subdivisions rise up.  Goldman-Schiffman opened up in 2011 to handle the overflow from the jam packed Hampton Cove Elementary.  The population of East Huntsville has climbed by over 70% from 2000 to 2010.

The Northern Edge of Huntsville Metro consists of New Market, Meridianville, Hazel Green, and Riverton have seen slow and steady growth as new subdivisions come into existence and traffic roads continue to get more dense.  This area has the best opportunity for larger uninhibited growth due to more easily developed land, possible large lot sizes, and the reinvestment in local roads and through-ways.

Today's Tidbit:  You can see sinkholes in the Huntsville area by going to the Huntsville city GIS site and going to their interactive maps.  From there click on the more button on the right and scroll down to where is says USGS Sinkholes.  Light purple/mauve outlined areas will pop up showing where sinkholes are as stated by the USGS.

Huntsville Metro Area Homes