Twin Cities Market Update Week Ending February1, 2014

As we emerge from the seemingly never ending polar vortex, the real estate market is beginning to show signs of life.  The most recent market stats continue to favor home sellers with lower inventory and higher median sale prices.  Here is a breakdown of the year over year stats for a few key categories:

  • New Listings: DOWN 16.9% over last year.
  • Homes for Sale (inventory): DOWN 9.1% over last year.
  • Median Sale Price: UP 12.4% over last year.

To give a little more context to this information, there are just under 12,000 homes for sale in the Twin Cities right now and last year at this time there were just over 13,000 home listings and those following the real estate industry were noting at that time that the overall listing inventory was exceptionally low...and now it is even lower.  The lack of available homes is causing median and average sale prices to increase.  If you...

Greening Minnesota ~ June 2010

There have been some major green and earth-friendly developments in Minnesota and the Twin Cities recently, including new statewide regulations on phosphates in soaps and the start of a major green job growth initiative in the Twin Cities.

Starting Thursday, Minnesota and 15 other states will ban the sale of dishwasher detergents that contain high levels of phosphates, a source of pollution in lakes and streams. Stores will not be allowed to sell detergent with more than 0.5 percent phosphorous. The bans do not apply to commercial dishwashing products, and detergents for hand-washing dishes generally contain no phosphorus.

Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak and Saint Paul Mayor Chris Coleman are teaming up to support and attract environmentally-sound manufacturing to the Twin Cities with the Thinc.Green MSP initiative. With Thinc.GreenMSP, the mayors are looking to boost demand for locally-produced green products and services, as well as for the skilled workers involved in...

Data Post October 8, 2009 - Forced vs Unforced Registration Test

Website Data for October 1 - October 7, 2009

We are testing 2 nearly duplicate websites to find out whether we collect more leads by forcing users to register or not.  For more information about our "Test," please visit our previous blog post here

For this reporting period, we have posted our raw data first and our comments second.  Please note: these numbers represent total unique visitors on each website for the Oct 1 - 7 timeframe, but the contact form submissions reported below only represent those that first registered on a website during this time.  For example: IDX users who registered prior to October 1st, and requested a showing during this timeframe, were not counted in this data. 

Raw Data:

Forced vs Un-Forced Registration on Real Estate Websites

It's the next "Great Debate"...should your real estate website force registration or not?  We have struggled with the answer to this question for several years and participated in forum discussions and roundtable gatherings compiling information and opinions from both sides of the issue.  So here's the deal:  Matt is committed to the cause and a believer of forced registration on our websites.  I am not convinced.  I think forced registration is a turn off for potential buyers and they will go elsewhere to find the information they desire. Matt and I are 50/50 business partners and we have tried to convince each other we are correct for over 2 years, armed with opinions and quasi-empirical data from web posts and forum boards.  It isn't working.  With the re-launch of our 2 highest producing local websites, we have decided to put the debate...

August Events in the Twin Cities

August is a swinging month in the Twin Cities when it comes to community celebrations, festivals, and other excuses to walk around in shorts and eat "Something on a Stick." There's lots to do, starting with today!

New Brighton's annual summer Stockyard Days are taking place on August 2 through 9. The event, now in its 29th year, features a golf tournament, a kiddie parade and grand parade, street dances, and fireworks. For a complete list of times and locations for all Stockyard Days activities, go to and click on "events."

Lake Hiawatha’s Annual Neighborhood Festival is taking place today, Wednesday, August 5 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Lake Hiawatha Park, 2701 E. 44th Street in Minneapolis. There will be a talent show with prizes, carnival games, food for sale, and community information tables.

There will be some Outdoor Puppet Theater on Thursday, August 6, from ...

Connected in this Crazy World

The talented Twin Cities Realtor team at Barker & Hedges has fully embraced the new technology that keeps people connected today. You can contact us in the traditional ways of calling us on the phone or coming to our office, but you can also e-mail us, tweet us, even visit us at our Facebook page. Few other Realtor teams embrace such technology, but if it keeps us more connected and helps provide information to our clients, we like to make use of it. We provide information and connect with the community in a variety of ways.

First and most obvious is our blog!

Second, we utilize both Twitter (@BarkerHedges) and Facebook. Become our follower, our fan, or both and get updated with pertinent information about the Twin Cities communities and greater Minnesota. 

Third, we Flickr. The BarkerHedges Flicker photo stream has contributed...

What Do Enchiladas Have To Do With Staging?

In today's busy world, time is at a premium for hardworking people. "Multi-tasking" has been engrained in our daily habits so much that it is almost second-nature. For example, at this moment I am writing a blog, updating my Facebook status, planning three vacant staging projects for next week, and cooking enchiladas for dinner (beef, not chicken).

Staging your house while juggling kids, work, and the dog may drive busy sellers over the edge. In situations like this, it is essential for these sellers to have a "plan of attack" when preparing their house for sale. It is the goal of home...

The Happiest Place on Earth?

Disney World is considered (by the Disney Corporation), the "Happiest Place on Earth." If you have ever been to the parks, you can reminisce how mouse ears, fairy princesses, and non-stop cheery music create a magical world that most children, young and old, cannot resist.

Over-zealous mouse fans can unintentionally turn Disney charm into a home staging nightmare when trying to imitate the Magic Kingdom in their own room...

Snow White, Bambi, and a myriad of characters turn this room into a cluttered sight. Notice there is no furniture, no decor, just walls full of a busy print. Therefore, when ...

Photo Friday - Walker Art Center & Minneapolis Sculpture Garden

The Mineapolis community absolutely loves its arts, whether its in the form of music, theater, film, or paint and canvas. Or in the case of the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, paint and steel.

Of course, its not all paint and steel, but much of it is. And now you can take a quick, pictoral, "virtual tour" of the Walker Art Center and Minneapolis Sculpture Garden on our Flickr page.


From the Spoondbridge and Cherry fountain and its pond to the Irene Hixon Whitney Bridge spanning 16-lanes of Twin cities traffic, the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden is filled with iconic beauty....

Falling in Love... with a House

After several blog postings of home staging tips, techniques, and examples, it was time to revisit WHY home staging helps houses to sell. So, put on your lab coats, we are dissecting the science behind the falling in love with a house.

THE HUMAN BODY: Several chemical and physical reactions occur in the body when it encounters something it loves - pupils dilate, heart rate increases, and endorphins (happy hormones) flood the blood stream. Now, this may all seem very "unromantic," but these reactions trigger an emotional response which creates a memorable experience for buyers who are visiting your house.