Archives for September 2008

Don’t Mess with Texas? Unfortunately, Ike did.

We had a men’s retreat at church planned for this weekend and I was secretly hoping to go down to SE Texas instead to help with the Hurricane Ike mess. Lo and behold, God answered my prayers!

Apparently, the retreat center is going to use their facilities to house refugees from the hurricane, and so a couple of men are going down to the Houston area to provide some debris clean-up relief as part of a ministry team called Thirst No More.

I’ll be leaving Fri-Sun and Autumn and the kids had already planned on going up to Arlington, TX to visit with her family so it’s perfect timing. I’m assuming outdoor accommodations and a huge shortage of food and water as well. Basically, what I faced in Iraq without the heat…but replace the heat with water and you have Galveston.

If you have anything to donate for this trip it would be much appreciated by those who are going and those who are affected in SE Texas. You can drop off at my home at 125 Village Park Drive if you can donate or lend anything. Here’s a list of suggested items:

Gas containers

Gas containers filled with Gas! (no gas in that area is available)

Camping-type equipment (stovetop, lanterns, tents, mosquito nets,etc)

Light construction-type tools (sledge hammers, shovels, crowbars,etc)

Equipment (generators, pressure washer, chain saws,etc)

Want the latest updates on Georgetown Texas Real Estate, news and latest developments?

Sign up for the blog by clicking the link below and don’t forget to comment on my blog, I love reader interaction!

Georgetown, Texas Real Estate Blog

In your FACE…book

I joined yet another social networking site:  Facebook

Heard of it?

If not, it’s time to dust off the computer and start using your Internet!  I’ve been trying not to get an account for several months because my time is stretched already writing for the Georgetown Texas Real Estate blog, balancing work/church/family life and still making time for myself to just chill.  So I thought I would just get an account, not waste any time on it, wait for people to find me and maybe even sell a house or two.
Boy was I wrong!  As far as selling a home, that hasn’t happened…yet.  But I have to tell you, that Facebook sure is addicting.  I love it when I can find an old high school or college buddy and we can link up as “friends.”  Everytime they write or do something, Facebook notifies me on my account.  It’s a real neat way to stay in touch with friends a little more frequently then the once a year Christmas card.
So check out my Facebook profile and find out what I’m having for lunch, when I’m brushing my teeth and other useless things to know.  Or you can just do it to spy on MY friends.  After all, you can learn a lot by the friends someone has.

And oh yeah, if you’re an old buddy, look me up!  Just don’t get me confused with the other 65 “Edward Lui’s” that pop up when you do a search.  Sheesh, so much for feeling special.

Berry Creek in Georgetown, Texas – What you can get for just under $400K (if you’re lucky)

I’m helping a friend of mine buy a large home and we ran across this home on 13 Sarazen Loop. This home is located in Berry Creek, a private golf course community in Georgetown, Texas that has homes ranging from the high $100’s to the $700’s and up.

One of the services that I provide my buyers is that I take pictures of the interior of the home for them and then post them on my Picassa Web Album. I forward my clients a link to the pictures so they can share them with family and friends, and “re-visit” the home conveniently through the Internet in case they forgot how something looked like.

What I’m field testing now is using video instead. This enables my client to get a better feel for how the rooms are connected, something that pictures can’t do. It also allows me the creative freedom to play around with iMovie on my Mac and still call it work:) So recently, I’ve been getting more familiar with YouTube to upload my videos. Check out my profile here

The beauty of using YouTube is that I can give my clients a better feel for the home and at the same time, I can use the videos to give the “outside” world a tour of the local Georgetown, Texas real estate market. So here’s the rookie tour…hope you don’t get motion sickness. I’m still working on technique.

You can read more details on Berry Creek Country Club and search all the homes available in Georgetown golf course communities through this page: Golf courses in Georgetown Texas

Want the latest updates on Georgetown Texas Real Estate, news and latest developments? Sign up for the blog by clicking the link below and don’t forget to comment on my blog, I love reader interaction!

Georgetown, Texas Real Estate Blog

Where to get cajun food in Round Rock, Texas

Yes, it’s that rare moment in the Lui household where we all go out to eat…and I actually get pictures…and I actually blog about it. I’ve been meaning to talk about this place because it’s one of my favoriteS.

Welcome to Gumbo’s, a cajun-style restaurant that doesn’t overdo the spicy stuff!

The special occasion was that it was Autumn’s Birthday, she turned 32 on September 4th so we went out and ate here. First – the non-food related observations:

I called the restaurant before it opened and left a message for my reservations. I asked for a return call and never got it and so I had to call again. A small annoyance, but one that I remember nonetheless. Second, is the website. I went to www.gumbosroundrock.com and registered to be a a “VIP member” of the VIP club. Ok, I’m not sure what that means either, except that I’m supposed to get a free gift via e-mail and I still don’t have it. I was hoping to get a “percent off” coupon so I could use on my meal. And no, that’s not being cheap, thats good stewardship baby!

The bread at this place rocks. It comes with seasoned butter and right off the bat I asked for another piece of bread with butter. I could eat that stuff for a meal, but exhibited immense, almost super-human self-control, so I could have room for the entree. I even gave Sabrina, my 8 month old, small pieces of it to occupy her and she liked it too, despite just two small teeth in her mouth.

We didn’t order any appetizers and jumped right into two entrees:

Shrimp and Crawfish Tails – in a creamy mushroom, bacon and garlic sauce, topped with grated parmesan

and the Tortilla-Crusted Salmon – pan-sauteed, topped with a sauteed crab cake, and served over chipotle cream sauce, with sweet potato puree, sliced fresh avocados and jalapeno corn relish.

The salmon was cooked just right, medium-rare, for our tastes and the rich and creamy sauce on the pasta dish was just perfect with the crusty bread. Is your mouth watering yet? Well, the best thing was dessert!

You’re looking at the New Orleans Style Custard topped with chocalate liqueur and garnished with rolled wafers….it was free because of my wife’s birthday, but if you were to spend the $5.95, it would be worth every penny. We licked that plate clean…well, not literally, but close.

Total bill was in the neighborhood of $50 with tip and tax. Not bad for a family of 5….but somewhat pricey considering that this family of 5 only shared two entrees! Food quality here has never let me down and the waiter (Eric?) was very good. The only other restaurant in Round Rock that I equally like is Main Street Grill. I’ll have to write on that sone another day…unless you want to treat.

Want the latest updates on Georgetown Texas Real Estate, news and latest developments? Sign up for the blog by clicking the link below:

Georgetown, Texas Real Estate Blog

Don’t forget about Temple, Killeen and Ft. Hood Texas!

You hear a lot about how Georgetown, Texas is such a great place to live for people who work in Austin. But what about 30 minutes in the other direction North? Well, that would land you right in Temple and the entire Killeen/Ft. Hood area. Don’t be scared off by the picture on the left…that would be more like your commute to Austin, then Temple. You see, if you’re heading north, there rarely is any traffic! Heading south into Austin, well, that’s another story.

I have recently had an influx of clients who are working in Temple/Ft. Hood/Killeen and one thing that is important to all of them is the drive time. So here’s a little research I put together thanks to the power of Google maps.

These calculations were done to the entrance of the neighborhood to the Hwy 195 exit 268. You’ll want to add another minute or two to get to the actual home.

These are all close to 10 minutes or less:

Shady Oaks = 4.1 Miles                          (6 Minutes)
Berry Creek/Logan Plateau = 4.5 Miles   (8 Minutes)
Falls of San Gabriel = 5.8 Miles              (9 Minutes)
Georgetown Village = 5.4 Miles              (9 Minutes)
Historic Georgetown Square = 5.4 Miles (9 Minutes)
River Chase = 6.7 Miles                           (9 Minutes)
Wood Ranch = 7.5 Miles                          (11 Minutes)

These are all 15-20 minutes:

Fountainwood Estates = 8.4 Miles              (14 Minutes)
Cimarron Hills = 11.9 Miles                        (15 Minutes)
Woodland Park = 9.1 Miles                          (15 Minutes)
Teravista = 12.2 Miles                                 (15 Minutes)
Mayfield Ranch = 13.7 Miles                       (15 Minutes)
Gabriels Overlook = 12.6 Miles                   (16 Minutes)
Behrens Ranch/Walsh Ranch 14.1 Miles      (16 Minutes)
Escalera Ranch = 12 Miles                           (17 Minutes)

From the Hwy 195 exit 268 to Temple exit 301 is 33.8 miles or 30 minutes. So you can get to Temple from any of these neighborhoods in 36 – 47 minutes one way. If you drive faster you can probably deduct another minute or two. Driving like a Grandma? Well, add another 5 minutes. Anyways, you get the point.

I’d be interested in some actual results! Do you live in one of these neighborhoods and work in Temple? How accurate are these times? Post your results!

Clean Homes Sell Faster – part 2 of 2

Editor’s Note: Two weeks ago, Maria revealed some great thoughts on why it’s so critical to have a clean home when selling (Clean homes sell faster).  I just showed a client a home in Fountainwood Estates in Georgetown, Texas yesterday and the home was a mess!  The tragic thing is that it was listed and owned by a real estate agent too!  Well, here you’ll get some practical tips on getting the job done.  Read on…

1. If you find that you can do the job yourself, then great! Here are some guidelines for you:

  • If you have clutter, get rid of it! The more “linear” you can make a home look, the cleaner it will appear.
  • Make a list of easy to forget items in your house to clean. Make sure to include the following: Ceiling fans, ceiling corners, light switch plates, electrical sockets, baseboards, inside windows, window frames, window sills, blinds, all dusting/polishing, glass cleaning, bathrooms, kitchen, and floors.
  • If you are going to be leaving the oven or refrigerator behind, then the inside of these appliances should be cleaned regularly as well. It is best to do a top to bottom clean then upkeep these things by rotating them on a weekly basis.
  • If you are dealing with mold issues in tubs and showers, spray a mold remover every day to get rid of the discoloration. If that doesn’t work, replacing the grouting is the best way to go.
  • If you have the time, vacuum every day before you leave work. It is amazing how a freshly vacuumed carpet can dramatically improve the appearance of your home!
  • Depending on the condition of your home, you may need to hire a professional, especially if you are looking at years of buildup/neglect.

2.  If you decide to hire a professional, follow these guidelines to ensure you hire the right company:

    • Be sure the company is licensed, insured, and bonded. Now is not the time for any cleaning service hassles due to the many number of things that can go wrong in a cleaning! While on the subject, don’t automatically go shopping for the company offering the lowest price. In general, as with all things, you get what you pay for.
    • Try to get a referral from a friend, relative, or coworker. This is the best way to ensure that you find a company that will do the job right the first time around.

    So, whether you can do the cleaning yourself or go with an outside company, remember to keep it clean during the selling process! Having a clean house to show should not be an afterthought but a priority as it may help you to sell it faster. Remember, your prospective buyers will picture themselves living in the house and it’s a lot harder to picture yourself living in a dirty home!

    Welcome Home Cleaning Services specializes in both “Spring Cleans” and Move In/Move Out Type Cleanings. If you do find that hiring a professional will work best for you, please give us a call at 512-931-2095 and I’d be glad to be of help!

    Maria Dorian

    Welcome Home Cleaning in Georgetown, Texas

    Facebook Auto Publish Powered By : XYZScripts.com