The Lord Ashley Ladies

What a lovely way to start a weekend: good weather good friends, good food, excellent entertainment!

Niece JP and friend Ann joined me for dinner at Lord Ashley’s Pub on Pendleton Pike. I hadn’t been there for years and since it was on the way to the Oaklandon Civic Theatre, it was the perfect place to have dinner. The service and food were excellent; Ann’s tenderloin was bigger than her plate! I’m becoming a connoisseur of ‘house made potato chips’ and theirs got an A+. We had lively dinner conversation and must have talked a bit too loud (more on that later). Topics ranged from Southern Baptist ladies to pet dental care. The calendar said it was Ladies Nite after 10:00 p.m. but we didn’t think we’d be able to make it after the play; we’ll save that for the next time.

The Theatre was just down the street at the Oaklandon Unitarian Universalist Church. We found a good parking spot and moseyed to the door. Being ladies of a certain age, we needed to make a ‘pit-stop’ before the play began. Since this was a church, the ladies’ room was well appointed (flowers, pictures, air freshener). JP did discover that the men’s room was directly behind it and the construction of the wall left a gap that permitted sounds to disturb the occupants.

We made our way upstairs to pay for our tickets and find a seat. As we got settled, a woman approached us and said, “You’re the Lord Ashley ladies aren’t you? We sat at the table behind you and heard you discussing the garden show in Danville this weekend.” Well, yes, we were and we did – that was on our Saturday agenda. We chatted a few minutes then the play director approached us and said we’d have better seats on the opposite side since there would be a ‘parade’ in Act II that we didn’t want to miss. We gathered our things and made our way to stage right; or is it left? I can never remember which.

The production was Corn and Sausage in Harmony, a play based on books by Phillip Gulley. If you have stress in your life, read or listen to his books – very soothing and humorous.

This was a totally volunteer group of folks but they did a remarkable job enveloping us in their world of board meetings, gossip, marital and career strife, traditions and new ideas. Check their web page for future productions.

A wonderful way to spend a Friday evening – even if I did hit every pothole on Mass. Ave. – sorry Ann!

Indy is hosting a Sweet Sixteen/Elite Eight Regional again this year!

Did your team make it?  Where are they playing this weekend?  One team from each regional will be playing April 5 and 7 at the AT & T Stadium North Texas.

Really like to see the teams in action this weekend, but would really like to take a live look at the teams?  Try this….the day before the games, the venues are open and the teams each have scheduled practices so you can get a look at a team that might win the the NCAA National Championship in Texas.  My friends and I have been doing this for years, scheduling time off work and really enjoying the day of watching the teams practice.

Indianapolis is a regular on the location rotation for regional and championship games – when the Butler Bulldogs were in the Final Four, there were about 40,000 people in the stands to watch them PRACTICE!  I was there…were you?

This year, Indianapolis is hosting Louisville, Kentucky, Michigan and Tennessee and the schedule is Tennessee (Noon-12:50 p.m.); Kentucky (1-1:50 p.m.); Michigan (2:10-3 p.m.); Louisville (3:10-4 p.m.) – Doors open at 11:00 a.m.

All venues follow the same NCAA times of Noon to 12:50 p.m.; 1 – 1:50 p.m.; 2:10 – 3 p.m.and 3:10 – 4 p.m.

Take time out of your busy lives and stop in and check out the teams in your area…you’ll be glad you did!

 

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Vicki Reed

NCAA Coaches live where???

Ever wonder where some of the NCAA coaches call home?  Think they live like we do?  Not really!  Early out in the NCAA offers them an opportunity to head to one of these great homes – MSN shares this slide show by Neal J. Leitereg of realtor.com:

March Madness mansions: Homes of college-hoops coaches

By Neal J. Leitereg of realtor.com

With its mix of powerhouse programs and Cinderella schools, March Madness energizes sports in a way that’s not quite like most events. At realtor.com, we’re pumped up from looking at the homes of some of NCAA basketball’s top coaches.

Take a look through the slide show below and tell us in the comments which coach’s home you would rank No. 1.

NOTE: All descriptive information comes from listings on realtor.com. Properties were on the market and listed as available at the time of publication in March 2014 unless noted otherwise.

Most people I know are likely most interested in Rick Pitino, Tom Izzo and Steve Alford’s homes, but I find the pricetags astounding!  And the square footage – who really needs 10,000 square feet!  Click through the slideshow to find out!

Meanwhile back in the state of Indiana…yes, I know, none of our teams made it to the dance this year, the spring market is really heating up, despite the fact we are in for a cold week ahead.  If you are thinking of buying or selling this spring, call, text or email me.

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Vicki Reed

Spring Selling Season Arrives Early!

Winter finally seems to have broken and the temps seem to be on the upswing!  Homes in the hot areas are already moving quickly in the Indianapolis and surrounding areas.  If you’re thinking this spring is a good time to starting looking for a house, you aren’t alone. That’s the problem. Your dream house, which might have been easy enough for you to grab a few years ago, is being eyed by other potential buyers.

IT IS A SELLER’S MARKET!  Whether you are a first time buyer or a move-up/down buyer, you must have everything in order prior to viewing homes!  Gone are the days of getting your financing in order after you found the home of your dreams, in order to make the home buying process run as smoothly as possible, follow these simple tips and LISTEN TO YOUR REALTOR!:

1. Get your financing lined up.  You may not worry about being turned down by the mortgage lender, but the seller doesn’t know that. The seller may also be in a hurry to hand you the keys. YOU HAVE TO BE PRE-APPROVED FOR YOUR MORTGAGE!  There are 2 numbers when you are dealing with your financing – first is the number your lender approves you for and second is the number you are comfortable spending!  The lender may say you can spend $300,000, but what does that mean to your monthly budget?  Working with a lender will help you decide what the right number is – contact Pat Hammer at Waterstone Mortgage and get started today!

2. Try to find out why the seller is selling. Buying and selling homes are emotional decisions, an emotional seller versus a nonemotional seller will react to different things.  If you have sellers who raised their kids in the house and lived there for most of their lives, they may appreciate a buyer who will do the same. Sending a personal letter with your offer may move you to the front of the pack!

3. Be flexible.  If you’re competing against other buyers, be as accommodating as possible.  Be flexible on closing dates and occupancy, the goal is for you to get the home of your dreams, and see number 1…a mortgage contingency allows buyers to back out of the deal if they can’t get financing for the house. Sellers don’t like mortgage contingencies – they don’t want to wave off potential buyers only to learn that their buyer can’t actually purchase the house.

 4. Sweeten the deal.  In a hot market, it is not uncommon to offer over list price, how much more is up to you, but even another $500 might get the seller’s attention.  You could also consider waiving the appraisal. That means if the bank determines the house isn’t worth the purchase price you and the seller agreed to, and it won’t lend you all of the money to cover it, you’ll have to make up the difference – provided you have the funds, of course.

5. Be fast. This is a big decision and you likely don’t want to rush, but if you know you can afford the house and you love it and the neighborhood, then, yes, you probably should rush.  In an age of instantaneous communication, minutes count and can make the difference between an accepted or rejected offer.  Make certain your agent uses the most current technology such as electronic signatures, in order to ensure immediate responses.

6. Be bold. If you really want the house, don’t get too cute and make a lowball offer, thinking there will be a lot of negotiation. You should suggest something close to the price the homeowner is expecting, or risk your offer being ignored. And this isn’t the time to be petty – or cheap, don’t haggle over $500 on a $200,000 deal.

7. Provide good customer service. Wait, isn’t that the seller’s job? You would hope so, but in a competitive market, it comes down to thinking of the homeowner as your customer. You’ll get his business (well, the house) if you’re personable, easy to work with and able to offer a good deal. Of course, you want to make sure you don’t offer the seller such an amazing deal that you hate yourself the day after closing. You want the welcome mat – what you don’t want is to be a doormat.

I can help you meet your goals and provide excellent guidance through what is one of the most important purchases of your life…call, text or email me!

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Vicki Reed

Time for the Men’s Big Ten Tourney…

…and we are hosting it right here in Indy!  Are you going?  As an Indiana fan, I’m disappointed in their performance this season, but I am not a fair weather fan and will continue cheering them on despite their record this season.

2014 is the ninth time Indianapolis has hosted the Tourney and the first game tips off at noon on Thursday with 8th seeded Indiana taking on 9th seeded Illinois…click here for the brackets to follow all the games!

The Big Ten Men’s Basketball Tournament has only been around 16-years, sellout crowds, exciting and competitive games, national television coverage and throngs of media have been highlights of past years tournaments.  Since the beginning of the tournament, the Big Ten has  has had 6 teams crowned champion. Ohio State leads all Big Ten schools with 4 (2007, 2010, 2011, 2013), followed by Michigan State with 3 (1999, 2000, 2001). Illinois 2 (2003, 2005), Iowa 2 (2001, 2006) and Wisconsin 2 (2004, 2008), and Purdue 1 in 2009.

Just remember, while each team participates in the tournament and the winner receives the conference’s automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament, but the team (or teams) that finish at the top of the regular-season standings is the Big Ten Champion. The bracket is seeded according to the final regular-season standings with the conference champion earning the top seed and the top four finishers receiving first-round byes.

Not going to the games, you can find the games covered by 4 different networks.  BTN will carry the opening 2 games as well as 2 primetime games on Friday.  ESPN2 will cover Thursday’s primetime matchups, ESPN will carry Friday’s afternoon games and CBS Sports takes over on Saturday for the semifinals and Sunday’s championship game.

So…are you going to the Fieldhouse to catch your favorite team?

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Vicki Reed

Who’s visiting Indy this Spring????

The Indianapolis Star has published it’s list of the 20 most interesting people visiting Indiana this spring.  Here is the intro and list, who’s on your list to see?

How Hard Is It . . . . . . ?

to use turn signals – ALL the time?

to put the grocery cart back in the corral instead of leaving it in a parking space?

to hold the elevator door for someone approaching?

to stop using ‘LIKE’ as every other word?

to turn on your headlights all the time (proven safety action)?

to let pedestrians cross when making a turn?

to leave a bit of TP hanging down for the next person?

to talk in a normal tone when on your cell (the person 2 blocks aways doesn’t need to hear your conversation)?

to really STOP on a red light (instead of speeding through)?

to stay for the whole game instead of leaving even if your team is losing?

to take your garbage can back to the garage (instead of leaving it at the curb for 3 days)?

to be on time?

to call your mother once a week? (OK, this one is very personal, sorry!)

to only take what you’ll eat at a buffet (make another trip)?

to spay/neuter your pets (PLEASE)?

to return library items on time?

to not spit on the sidewalk (nasty)?

to change a diaper in the RR (or bedroom) not on the living room floor or couch?

to clean off your table at a fast-food place?

to change into flats instead of walking like a dork on the sidewalk (does make for fun watching on Monument Circle tho)?

to control your kids in public places?

to tell your family you love them  (often)?