Wednesday, July 29, 2009

$1,000 closing cost incentive offered for new home sales in St. Charles County

ST. CHARLES COUNTY, MO --- In an effort to bolster the American dream in St. Charles County, first-time home buyers and new residents planning to buy a newly constructed home could receive $1,000 in closing cost assistance through a limited incentive program offered by HOME St. Charles, a non-profit subsidiary of the Economic Development Center (EDC) of St. Charles County.

Known as the “Welcome Home Incentive Program,” this local initiative offers $500 from HOME St. Charles to qualifying new home purchasers if their banker, builder, or mortgage broker will provide a $500 match. Officials said they currently have funding to issue 20 incentive awards.
“As part of our broader economic solutions campaign, the Welcome Home Incentive Program is designed to help attract new residents, sell new homes, and impact local jobs in St. Charles County,” said EDC President Greg Prestemon. “We also hope this effort will serve as a challenge to other community groups, businesses, and organizations to encourage them to consider how they can refocus resources and programs to have an immediate and positive impact on the local economy.”

Some of the stipulations to qualify for the Welcome Home Incentive Program include:
  • Must be a first-time homebuyer or new resident moving to St. Charles County
  • Must have a $500 match from the builder, banker, or mortgage broker
  • Must be a newly constructed single family home or previously unoccupied new single family home
  • Purchase price cannot exceed $267,000
  • Only home purchase contracts signed on or after July 1, 2009 will be considered
Officials said they also plan to make an effort to award the incentive to a wide variety of subdivisions and communities throughout St. Charles County.

Funds are limited and an online application is now available. Contact the Grant Hickman Team for more information.

Monday, July 27, 2009

August 2009 Calendar of Events in St. Charles County

August 2009 Calendar of Events

Saturday, August 1
Race For the River and Clean Water Challenge
Noon-7 p.m.
Kayak and canoe paddlers arrive from Washington, Missouri. Live music, food, hands-on environmental education displays and activities. Custom canoe and kayak show.

Tuesday, August 4
Using Genealogical Databases. This is an introduction to using genealogical databases available through the library.
10:30-11:30 a.m.
Kathryn Linnemann Library

Sunday, August 9
Peach Festival, Pere Marquette State Park, Grafton
10 am - 5 pm
Crafts, food, children's games, balloon artist, face painting, pie eating contest, largest peach contest, book signings, peach drinks and peaches.

Monday, August 10
Statehood Day
10 am - 4 pm
First State Capitol Complex, 201-216 S. Main
Celebrate Missouri's birthday with a free open house. Activities include tours of Missouri's first state capitol on the hour and historical demonstrations depicting the lifestyle of the 1820s.

Tuesday, August 11
Bone Density Screening for Women
4-6 p.m.
Determine your risk for osteoporosis. Appointments are required. Call 636-928-9355
Middendorf-Kredell Library

Thursday, August 13
German Holidays
Learn how holidays like Easter and Christmas are traditionally celebrated in Germany. Discuss German culture, customs of today and yesterday.
Breeze Park Senior Living

Tuesday, August 18
Retirement–It’s About Independence
The largest risk to retirement is healthcare costs. Learn how Medicare, Medicaid and tax law changes impact long-term care strategies.
7-8 p.m.
Spencer Road Library

Friday, August 21, 4-10 p.m.
Saturday, August 22, 9:30a.m.-10 p.m.
Sunday, August 23, 9:30 am - 5 pm
Festival of the Little Hills
Historic St. Charles Downtown District
St. Charles largest event of the year features more than 300 craft booth, demonstrations, live music at venues throughout the grounds, other entertainment, food and refreshments.

Saturday, August 22
Art of the Motorcycle Gala
Foundry Art Centre
7 p.m.
Gala event o Feature “Everything Motorcycle”- From Collectible Works From Renowned
Harley-Davidson Artist Scott Jacobs To Displays Of Vintage And Modern Cycles
The gala event features everything motorcycle, from collectible works from Harley-Davidson artist Scott Jacobs, to displays of vintage and modern cycles. Food, wine beer and auction items donated by local businesses. $50 per person in advance and $55 at the door. RSVP to (314) 422-7677 or (636) 399-5345. Net proceeds benefit St. Charles Riverfront Arts.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Buyers show continued confidence in the housing market. Sales, new starts are up and incentives help ease the way home.

The saying goes “Home is where the hearth is” and it looks like an increasing number of homebuyers will have their very own hearth soon. We gage confidence by the number of satisfied homebuyers who now have their very own place to feel secure, comfortable and to grow. We gage confidence by the number of home sellers who are able to sell their properties at a reasonable price and feel secure moving on to the next chapter of their lives.

But just to add numbers to our “people quotient,” the latest reports show existing home sales rose for the third consecutive month, up 3.6 percent from June to July, and prices declined less in June, according to the National Association of Realtors. The median existing single home price came in at $181,600. First-time buyers are making their mark–they rang up 29 percent of the sales and helped to increase buyer visits by 12 percent from a year ago. New home starts and permits are up too, a gain of 3.6 percent in overall starts and an 8.7 percent increase in permits.

Certainly the $8,000 first-time homebuyer tax credit has helped the housing market begin its recovery, and there are a number of other incentives out there that will help buyers feel more confident. In the St. Charles region the Economic Development Center of St. Charles County offers, through its subsidiary program HOME St. Charles, a “Welcome Home Incentive Program” to help buyers with closing costs associated with the purchase of a newly constructed single family home. This incentive is for first-time buyers or new residents moving into St. Charles County.

The initiative offers $500 to qualifying buyers who have a $500 match from the builder, banker or mortgage broker. For more information on this incentive, go to, but be sure to come in to talk with us about this program and the many more incentives that make buying, selling and living in St. Charles County a great experience.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Lake Saint Louis is one of the BEST places to live in America!

Congratulations to the residents of Lake St. Louis! The community placed ninth in the top 10 places to live in Money magazine’s annual listing of the best 100 places. SCHNEIDER Realtors’ own Jane Nicoletti can testify first hand–she’s lived there for more than 20 years and loves Lake Saint Louis.

“Now my grandchildren can enjoy the pool, the parks and walk along the boulevard,” she says. “and there’s shopping galore. How great is it that we made it in the top 10 cities to live list!”

Money magazine’s criteria for the top 100 list is based on school ratings, home prices, employment levels and crime statistics. The magazine judges communities between 8,500 and 50,000 residents.

With it’s five parks, two lakes, three golf courses and a 650-horse equestrian center, Lake Saint Louis has evolved from a resort town to a thriving family-centered community that is projected to have a strong job growth over the next five years.

Last year St. Peters, O’Fallon and St. Charles made the list. Seems like our little corner of the world is doing just fine!

Check out homes in these great places to live!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

The $8,000 tax credit deadline for first-time homebuyers will be here soon

Right now is the time to buy your first home and receive the $8,000 tax credit, which is part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The deadline to file for the tax credit is November 30, 2009, and while that date may seem way in the future, first-time homebuyers must begin the process now to make the deadline.

Here’s a refresher about the tax credit:

First-time homebuyers will receive an $8,000 tax credit, or 10 percent of the home’s value, whichever is less. First-time homebuyers are defined as those who have not owned a principle home during the past three years.

The credit can be applied to either 2008 or 2009 tax returns and does not need to be repaid if the homebuyer lives in the house for a minimum of three years.

The tax credit applies to first-time buyers who purchase a principle home between January 1, 2009 and November 30, 2009.

Claiming the tax credit is easy. Once the sale is completed, new first-time buyers can claim the tax credit on their returns. No special forms or documents are required.

Don’t pass up this great deal. A wide variety of homes are available now and you can be a part of our country’s economic revival. Give me a call. I’ll explain the tax credit and home purchase in simple, easy-to-understand language.

Also, you can check out The more you know, the better decisions you make.

Friday, July 10, 2009

We are still BUYING HOMES - FAST

Divorce, Late Payments, death in a family and too much home repairs can be difficult situations to deal with.Let me know if we can help.

Please remember that I and members of my team are still buying homes. I know that these economic times bring about situations where people need to sell their homes fast. If you are interested in selling your home (CASH), please feel free to contact me at and I will connect you with the right people!

Need Help Evaluating a Company?

When looking to purchase and already existing company, there are 3 key things to keep in mind when looking at options.
  1. Will the existing company 'Service the Debt'
  2. Does the existing company have 'Future Growth Potential'
  3. Can the existing company afford to 'Feed My Family and Cover Already Existing Bills

As each situation is unique, make sure you visit with a professional when it comes to any and all 'Company Valuations'. If you are looking for a FREE evlautions, let Grant know and I will connect you with a professional who can help! Email me direct at

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Spotlight on Continental Title Company

Q: Please introduce yourself?
Missy Palitzsch

Q: What is the name of your business?
Continental Title Company

Q: Where is your business located?
2159 Bluestone Plaza, Saint Charles, MO 63304

Q: Briefly describe what you/ your business does.
Title and escrow services

Q: How many years have you been in business?

Q: What is your burning desire?
To have a second home in Montana

Q: What’s something not many people know about you?
I grow and can my own fruits and vegetables

Q: Do you have a Website Address?

Q: What’s the best way for someone to get a hold of you if they have further questions?

Monday, July 6, 2009

Changing Schools–Being The New Kid Is A Very Big Deal

Your new home is waiting for you. There’s excitement in the air, moving boxes all over the floor and last minute details to wrap up. But, someone in your family just might not be too excited about this move. Children can be very stressed when they leave old friends and familiar settings, whether moving across the country or across town.

School can be a second home for your child and the nucleus of their social lives. It’s hard to start all over again, especially since peer groups have become so important. Easing this transition for the younger members of the family will also ease your transition and make for a much happier experience.

Here are some tips to help your child adjust quickly.

Talk about the move even before it happens. Discuss everything you know about your new community, be enthusiastic and positive. Children can sense any reluctance on your part.
Never discount your child’s feelings about the move and new school. His fears and hesitation are real.

Most likely, you’ve already visited the new school since one of the reasons you chose your new home is because of the academic reputation. If your child didn’t go with you, take him to the school and look around, even if it’s during the summer and the school may be closed.
Encourage get-togethers with neighborhood children who attend the school. Seeing a familiar face is usually a comfort when dropped into an unfamiliar setting.

Pay attention to the kind of clothes the students wear. Even if it makes you feel like a slave to fashion, one of the worse things that could happen for your child is to show up on the first day of school and not be dressed like everyone else.

Go to school with your child on the first day. This is no time to drop her off and pick her up after school. Walk her to her classroom and introduce yourselves to the teacher. As your child continues her transition during the school year, you want the teacher to know who you are and that you are involved.

Expect some bad behavior. Children will feel unsettled and worried, even if they won’t or can’t express those feelings. Acting out may be their way of showing their frustration.
Above all, talk to your children and indicate you have an open line of communication and will help.

To help you even further, check out the Beating Back-to-School Bedlam class presented by Progress West HealthCare Center. Productivity advisor Mary Kutheis will help you discover solutions to be more organized, manage a schedule and generally guarantee a smooth transition. The program is at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, July 21 at the Middendorf-Kredell Library.