Impressive Halloween Homes…

October 18th, 2014

When it comes to the holiday spirit, it seems everyone saves their decorating energy for Christmas – it’s not often that people go all out for any other occasion. Well, with Halloween just around the corner, we decided to prove that there are a few October die hards out there. Enjoy these impressive Halloween homes.

1. The Pumpkin Palace
This home is one of the subtler of the bunch but if you look closely, you’ll see well over 100 neatly carved pumpkins lighting up the night. Though the other houses might be a bit more chaotic in their approach, imagine the time it took to carve each and every Jack-O-Lantern!?

 

 

2. The Haunted House
While most of the homes on this list go for a more cartoon-ish appeal, this spooky place takes a legitimate crack at the classic haunted house. Sure, by day it’s probably a nice suburban home but with some creative lighting, they’ve managed to turn their upper-middle-class home into an eerie site.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3. The Neighborhood Favorite
Here’s a video of a lady in her neighborhood that has earned the reputation of dominating when it comes to Halloween decorations. Relaying mostly on lights and a few props, this is a pretty impressive display of holiday cheer.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=T8R2OlM1KQ8

4. The Casa de Cartoons
Speaking of cartoon-ish, the owners of this home definitely went for the novel look over the authentic. Showcasing a twelve-foot Homer Simpson, Sponge Bob Square Pants and a pair of life-sized Incredible Hulks (moonlighting as Frankenstein), there is nothing subtle about this Halloween home.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5. The Vegas Holiday
Whether this is a quaint suburban home or a tacky Vegas hotel, we may never know but it’s impressive nonetheless. Who knows what flamingos and frogs have to do with Halloween but what is certain is that the decorating team behind this crazy Halloween house certainly left their shame at the door and went all out for the holiday.

 

 

 

6. The New York Nightmare
You know you’ve done a substantial job of decorating when you can’t even see the house itself! Yep, this New York City residence definitely went all-in for the holiday when they slathered their tiny lot with more decorations than square footage.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

7. The House of the Living Dead
It’s probably a more impressive site by night but this place has done a great job of covering such a large lot with plenty to see. Aside from the impressive amount of skeletons, zombies and tombstones occupying the home, you have to wonder where they keep that 6-foot tarantula for the other eleven months of the year.

 

 

 

 

 

 

8. The Hungry House
Leading the Less is More campaign, this Halloween home doesn’t have a lot going on but it’s most definitely one of the more ominous of the bunch. Boasting nothing more than a couple stylish Jack-O-Lanterns, the fact that this home looks alive (and out to kill you) is reason enough to make this list.

 

 

9. The Tiny Terror
Judging by the picture, there’s not a lot of room at this small home for extensive decorations but that doesn’t seem to limit the visionaries. Getting the most bang for their buck, this humble home has enough Halloween eye candy to compete with the big hitters.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

10 . The Suburban Graveyard

Making the list as the last private residence, this friendly home turned eerie graveyard is a site to see. Though it’s nothing more than a collection of store-bought tombstones, you’d have to be pretty brave to be caught there after dark.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=_4dnjrnl6ok

11. The Corvinestilor Castle

Of course, you can’t have Halloween and haunted houses without Count Dracula and the iconic castle that started it all. Topping the list for most impressive Halloween decorations is the Corvinestilor Castle in Transylvania because it doesn’t need decorations to make it any spookier than it already is – the legend and the architecture speak for themselves.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

About Us: With homes in Springfield MO, Ozark MO, Nixa MO and surrounding southwest Missouri areas, Murney Associates produces more real estate sales in Springfield and Southwest Missouri than any other real estate firm. Murney Associates is the largest independent real estate company in Springfield Missouri and is ranked in the Top 100 in the nation by Real Estate Magazine

We are locally owned yet nationally recognized for our award-winning real estate performance.


 

We have the largest number of realtors in Springfield MO than any other real estate firm. And with commercial real estate in Springfield MO and surrounding areas, Murney Commercial Realtors can also help you find your next business location.


 

We can facilitate a stress-free move for you and your family to any of the homes in Springfield and its surroundings areas. Murney wants to exceed your expectations, because our clients always come first!

 

 


 

Murney Supports Breast Cancer Awareness

October 5th, 2014

 

 

 

bcfo

 The History Behind BCFO

In May 1999, Breast Cancer Foundation of the Ozarks was established to provide help and hope to local families impacted by breast cancer. The first contribution was made by BCFO founder, Mary Beth O’Reilly, and matched by Kristen’s surgeon, Joni Scott, MD, in tribute to all the patients Dr. Scott has treated for breast cancer. Other breast cancer survivors and friends of Kristen have made donations in her memory as well. Breast Cancer Foundation of the Ozarks incorporated on February 23, 2000 and received not-for-profit status the following year.

Education on a variety of issues is an emphasis for BCFO because of situations like Kristen’s. She sought medical attention for a lump in her breast a year prior to her diagnosis and was told she was too young for breast cancer. Because of this and similar situations, there is a need to focus education on those under 40 as well as those over 40.


Mission & Goals


Breast Cancer Foundation of the Ozarks provides resources and support for local individuals and families impacted by breast cancer.

Goals

  • Establish a charitable fund to meet needs of individuals with breast cancer and their families;
  • Advocate for issues not currently focused on by other area resources;
  • Provide information for accessing second opinions;
  • Promote breast cancer awareness for those under 40;
  • Increase awareness of treatment options and resources for all stages of breast cancer;
  • Provide information not included in current breast health promotion.

BCFO also works to meet the special needs of children within families affected by breast cancer, recognizing the fact that breast cancer is a family disease. In 2008 alone, 42 children in families impacted by breast cancer received assistance through the Children’s Fund.

Assistance is tailored to each unique situation. In the past, BCFO has provided assistance in the following ways:

  • Assistance in paying for orthodontic treatment initiated prior to the diagnosis
    of family member with breast cancer
  • Clothing
  • Birthday or holiday gifts
  • School supplies
  • Child care
  • Infant supplies
  • Additional assistance with utilities

 Murney Associates, Realtors is a proud supporter of BCFO and donates time and money to help the families in the community who are affected by breast cancer.


 

Fall Festivals in The Ozarks

September 24th, 2014
Fall Festivals are upon us!

Fall Festivals are upon us!

Now that we are in the middle of September and Fall os officially upon us, fall festivals are popping up all around SW Missouri. There is almost more than 4 every weekend being attended by many families from all over the State of Missouri.

 Silver Dollar City’s annual “National Cowboy & Harvest Festival”

Silver Dollar City's National Harvest Festival

The Home of American Craftsmanship, Silver Dollar City, presents The Country’s Premier Craft Festival -National Harvest Festival! Including:

    • New Texas Trick Riders, September 6 – October 6, showcasing trick, fancy stunt and Roman riding, plus trick shooting and whip acts atop legendary white stallions!
    • Western Stunt Show featuring professional stuntmen and women performing amazing feats!

Also in Branson this weekend is the 40th Annual Autumn Days “Arts, Music and Crafts” Festival.

 

Autumn Days in Historic Branson

Autumn Days in Historic Branson

The Autumn Daze festival features homemade crafts, food, live entertainment and other activities throughout downtown.

Artisans and crafters exhibit their work including, among other items: wood crafts; quilts; clothing; crocheted and knitted items; jewelry; hats; purses; ladies accessories; toys; floral arrangements; ironworks; and collectibles. Many vendors demonstrate their techniques. Throughout each day there are free concerts from some of Branson’s finest entertainers.

In addition to continuous entertainment and homespun wares, Autumn Daze has a food court, a celebrity autograph booth, and a sidewalk sale.

Corn mazes, haunted houses and pumpkin patches are all the rage this fall as well. KY3.com has a great list and coupons for area events.

 

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Don’t forget that #Murney Associates, Realtors is all about community support, selling homes and making housing dreams come true.


 

Real Estate Safety Month Tips

September 16th, 2014

Did you know that September is “Realtor Safety Month?” Some of you may wonder why the real estate industry would have a month dedicated to their safety? According to Department of Labor, being a REAL ESTATE AGENT is in the Top 10 High Risk Occupations in America.

realtor safety

 

In 2013 “120 REALTORS” were either mugged, assaulted, raped and 4 were murdered in the line of duty according to the Department of Labor. We can definitely protect ourselves from this from occurring. Many times as agents we trust what people say but there are times that thinking with our “inner voice” or “gut check” is the best policy when out on the job. Here are some safety tips:

 

1. When you trust your gut you are acting on an instinct, a feeling that something is wrong. You may be in a vulnerable position such as at a showing alone but there are ways to minimize your risk. For instance, always have someone you trust like another agent or spouse with you at the showing or leave someone detailed information about where you are and when you should return, that way they can call you if they feel like you’ve been gone too long.

2. Defend your right to put safety before politeness. Do not waiver from your safety practices just because someone else thinks they are silly. 

3.  Always leave your GPS locations on your mobile device. In case something ever serious happens your phone provider can geo-locate your device and hopefully YOU if necessary.

4. With fall and winter approaching do your best to schedule showings before it gets dark outside. If that is not possible, take a flashlight with you or stop by earlier and have lights already turned on.

5. Don’t live in FEAR, but be aware of your surroundings. Listen to your gut, if you are feeling unsettled in any way, do more homework, take a friend or colleague. When in doubt stay out as well.

 

 


 

Real Estate Lawn Care Tips For Fall

September 3rd, 2014

The long days of summer have ended, and fall is here once again. For homeowners, this means that you will no longer have to complete those irksome, weekly mowing sessions. Your grass won’t grow as quickly and it will require far less maintenance. However, that doesn’t mean you can just ignore your lawn until warmer weather returns in the spring. In preparation for the cold, dry months ahead, your grass needs to suck up energy, moisture, and nutrients right now. Use our lawn care tips for fall to ensure that come spring, your lawn will be green, lush, and healthy.

Lawn Care Tips for Fall

Lawn Care Tips for Fall

RAKE AND REMOVE LEAVES

Raking up fallen leaves is very important if you want to maintain the health of your yard. If you don’t remove the leaves, they will become wet with dew each morning (and during any rainstorms) and start to stick together. That wet, oppressive blanket of leaves suffocates the grass and is a breeding ground for fungi. To prevent this, remove layers of leaves as they fall. If you wait until the trees are bare, your grass will suffer the consequences. While raking is the traditional method, you could also use an outdoor vacuum or a lawnmower (with a collection bag attached) to remove the leaves.

Lawn Care Tips for Fall

GIVE YOUR LAWN TRIMS

Continue mowing in the fall as you would in the summer, giving the grass a cut whenever it’s looking a bit shaggy. However, near the end of the season, you will want to cut it quite low for a week or two. Put your mower on its lowest setting, but be sure that you won’t cut off more than one-third of each grass blade. A short haircut will allow in more sunlight and also prevent the grass from browning too much during the winter.

Lawn Care Tips for Fall

FERTILIZE

If you want to fertilize in the fall, be sure to do so early, before your grass goes dormant. Giving your lawn a boost at this time of the year is optional, but it will help the grass roots and rhizomes grow quickly. Those strong roots will help the plant survive the winter and hold onto nutrients for springtime. Apply a dry fertilizer and be sure that you completely cover the lawn for consistent, even growth.

Lawn Care Tips for Fall

FILL IN BALD SPOTS

If your lawn has any bald spots, fall is a great time to take care of them. Do it early in the season, before the grass goes dormant, and use an all-in-one repair mixture (available at most gardening shops and home improvement centers). Loosen the soil in the bald spots, spread the mixture on top, compact it gently, and water. Continue watering it every other day. Be sure that you do this before the ground freezes or the seeds will struggle to grow.

Lawn Care Tips for Fall

STOP WHEN THE GROUND FREEZES

When the ground freezes, you can finally sit back and put your feet up! The grass will be dormant, so it won’t need any water and it won’t grow again until springtime.

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If mowing and watering your lawn is your least favorite chore, rejoice! The end is near. You’ve made it through yet another long summer and will soon be able to rest until spring. Or you could always hire a lawn care professional to take care of your yard year-round! Give Nixa Lawn Service a call if you live in the Springfield/Nixa area. We would love to hear from you.


 

5 HUGE APPRAISAL MYTHS.

August 21st, 2014

A visit from an appraiser is inevitable in selling and buying  your home. This can be a scary process for some. Sometimes the appraisal can make or break the deal. Be smart in real estate when going through the appraisal process. Here are 5 myths to the appraisal process.

appraise

1. Myth: Assessed value should equate to market value.
Reality: While most states support the concept that assessed value approximate estimated market value, this often is not the case. Examples include when interior remodeling has occurred and the assessor is unaware of the improvements, or when properties in the vicinity have not been reassessed for an extended period. It is good to make a list of the cost of the remodeling and give to the appraiser.

2Myth: The appraised value of a property will vary, depending upon whether the appraisal is conducted for the buyer or the seller.
Reality: The appraiser has no vested interest in the outcome of the appraisal and should render services with independence, objectivity and impartiality – no matter for whom the appraisal is conducted

3. Myth: You generally can tell what a property is worth simply by looking at the outside.


Reality:
Property value is determined by a number of factors, including location, condition, improvements, amenities, and market trends.

4. Myth: An Appraisal is the same as a home inspection.
Reality: An Appraisal does not serve the same purpose as an inspection. The Appraiser forms an opinion of value in the Appraisal process and resulting report. A home inspector determines the condition of the home and its major components and reports these findings.

5. Myth: Market value should approximate replacement cost.
Reality: Market value is based on what a willing buyer likely would pay a willing seller for a particular property, with neither being under pressure to buy or sell. Replacement cost is the dollar amount required to reconstruct a property in-kind.


 

Back To School Safety Tips

August 4th, 2014

SCHOOL

 

Pencils, backpacks, glue; smiles, nervousness and excitement; these are the days of back to school here in the Ozarks. Many rural schools have already begun and Springfield schools begin the 12th of  August, but with school beginning to quickly for most we have some tips for children, parents and the public on road safety as well as school safety.

To the Parents:

  1. Dress your children appropriately for school. Does your child have PE (wear tennis shoes), art (wear something they can get dirty), etc. If your child rides the bus early and it is going to be cool send a jacket with them because as it warms up they can put it in their backpack.
  2. Buy a backpack that is light weight and colorful so your child can be seen and is easy to walk or ride their bikes with.
  3. Send your child with a cell phone for emergency purposes ONLY. You never know when your child needs their parent but remember to tell them that during the day to give their phone to the front office or to their teacher so they are not disrupted during class.
  4. Teach your children the “ways of the road.” Kids need to know cycling hand signals, how to use crosswalks appropriately and how to not talk to strangers no matter what.
  5. Most importantly teach your children the importance of nutrition at school. Whether you send your child with a lunch or they purchase a school lunch, teach them to eat their fruits and vegetables, drink milk rather than soda and skip on the sugary snacks.

To the Children:

  1. OBEY your parents! Listen to the safety tips your parents give you.
  2. Eat well and drink your milk.
  3. Remember good hygiene.
  4. DO NOT TALK TO STRANGERS! Walk in groups of people.
  5. Learn the “ways of the road.” Use cross walks correctly.
  6. Do your homework right after school so you can go play.
  7. Get to bed early so you are refreshed for the following day.
  8. Listen to your teachers and authorities.
  9. HAVE FUN!!!!!

Links to school supply list can be found with your local MURNEY ASSOCIATE AGENT!


 

4 Key Steps In The Home Buying Process

July 31st, 2014

 

Buying a new home is an investment in your future. Financial experts agree investing in real estate is still one of the wisest portfolio-building strategies. So put your trust in the proven professionals at Murney Associates. We will assist you in making the best financial and personal investment. We are here to help you find your way home.

  1. 1.  Mortgage Pre-approvalhomebuying

Sellers are more inclined to negotiate with pre-approved buyers. Your Murney agent can assist you with selection of a knowledgeable and reputable lender. In your meeting, what type of loan should I get? Can I afford this payment with my current income? Your lender will explain financial considerations such as down payments, closing costs, escrow accounts as well as monthly payments. Ask for a pre-approval letter. When you’re ready to make an offer, your letter will make your contract more attractive.

 

 

  1. 2.  Professional Representation

Now more than ever, you need the services of the experts in the field. Enlist a Buyer’s Agent to protect your interests instead of those of the seller. At Murney, we specialize in providing buyers good faith, loyalty and fidelity when purchasing a home. We can show you the ropes and make the purchasing process both stress-free and hassle-free. Remember when hiring a Buyer’s Agent that you are not charged a FEE!images-11

  1. 3.  Contract, Appraisals, Inspections & Policies

It’s time to write a “clean” contract in order to gain acceptance from the seller. You can be confident your offer will be accepted, because Murney agents know contracts. Your lender has a vested interest in the property as well, so they will require a Wood Destroying Pest Inspection and an appraisal to determine the value of the home you’ve selected.realtor

  1. 4.  Closing and Keys

When can we move in? On the scheduled day of closing, your Murney agent will meet you at the title company to assist in closing the transaction. This is the time when all final lending documents are signed and notarized. The balance of your down payment and closing costs are due and payable at the closing table. After you and the seller sign the deeds and lender documents, your Murney agent will hand you the keys to your new home.images-7


 

Guarding Your Real Estate Identity

July 14th, 2014

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As real estate professionals it is our priority to advertise our client’s listings in every avenue possible. Most of our local avenues are Springfield, MO News-Leader, Greater Springfield Board of Realtors, Homes Magazine, Your New Home Magazine, Springfield Business Journal, 417 Magazine and over 300 Internet sites including Craigslist. On a daily basis Craigslist is being compromised. Most of the time we never know what is going on until contacted by a Seller/Buyer or Renter regarding the wrong info on the property.
http://www.craigslist.org/about/scams is a common Craigslist real estate scam: A phony ad is placed on Craigslist for a property to rent or buy with normally a Yahoo or gmail account holder. Once you email them about the property they will disclose IN FULL DETAIL as to why they are renting out the home or selling it. Most of the time it is because they are moving across the country or out of the country totally. They set up a Paypal account and once their accomplice meets you at the property (with the wrong keys to the home) and explains that if you like it they need the deposit and first months rent sent to a certain Paypal account. They then vanish, with your money and now you have no home to move into. Keep in mind that these sneaky scam artist are scraping ALL of this information and are also scrapping the REALTORS information as well and posing as them.

 

Here are a few more areas to watch your real estate identity. www.homes.com, www.zillow.com, www.trulia.com etc are sites that the general public use mostly to do a home search. Keep in mind that these sites are ADVERTISING SITES and not actual real estate sites. The data is normally eschewed, incorrect or, sometimes accurate or FALSE all together.newHomeFinderLogo

We have seen homes listed on various sites in the “Short Sale” or “Foreclosure” categories that are homes that are paid for or up to date on payments. It is always a good idea that once you purchase a home look on these sites to make sure the information is correct. MURNEY.COM is the only site that pulls hourly from the local MLS and has the accurate data. Also the Greater Springfield Board of Realtors DOES NOT release any sold data, so when you see sold prices you should call a Murney Associate.

 


 

New Murney Agent Making A Difference

July 7th, 2014

Evangel University stresses the importance of service, and it’s really not a hard sell with students.

Case in point: Senior recreation and sport management major Amanda Landolt and graduate Mitchell Jenkins.

Landolt plays basketball for Evangel and also works for the Springfield-Greene County Park Board during her summer breaks. Jenkins is a graduate of Evangel University and is now a Realtor with Murney Associates, Realtors. Through the park board, they were introduced to The Miracle League, an organization that provides children with disabilities an opportunity to play baseball.2014-06.30 Amanda & Mitch

Using the buddy system, The Miracle League pairs participants with volunteers who help them bat and run the bases. The field is a cushioned, synthetic turf, and players using wheelchairs and walkers can glide unrestricted without fear of injury.

“It’s just awesome,” Landolt said. “I get emotional when I see these kids and all they can do. People look at them and say, ‘Oh, they’re disabled. They can’t do this or that.’ They certainly can do things! They make it work!”

Their enthusiasm and concern for others is contagious, so the entire Evangel women’s basketball team volunteered with The Miracle League last fall.

 

It was a weekly commitment.

“They were automatically on board,” Landolt said of her coaches and teammates. “The girls came in the first night, and it was an awesome experience. It was neat to work with a special population of kids and enjoy serving them and watching them grow as individuals. Even though our weeks were long with academics and athletics, we had enough for those kids. It became something that we all looked forward to.”

Landolt said working with the league is different each week. “It’s never boring, constantly changing. You just gotta go with it,” she said. “These kids are such an inspiration to all of us and teach each one of us to pursue our dreams and just keep moving forward in life,” Jenkins adds.

The 2010 Kickapoo High graduate plans to study special education at the master’s level, so “just go with it” may become a life theme for Landolt. To anyone considering volunteering or working with people with disabilities, she says, “If you have it in your heart, find a way to do it.”

 

Mitch Jenkins ballpark20140428_195829