My iPad Dozen

AppsI know many of the members of the Ledyard Community Forum are iPad users. I’m often asked for a list of my favorite iPad apps so I keep my “iPad Dozen”  list updated so it is ready to be sent in an e-mail when anyone asks. I’ve owned an iPad since 2010 and as a result my list has been through a few iterations.

This is my current top 12 list in no particular order. I’m not sure how I could possibly rank them so I won’t even try!

1. Dropbox has been on my front screen since 2010. This tool gives me the ability to sync and share my files online and across computers. Since I’ve gone paperless, I carry my iPad instead of a laptop.

2. The Google app is an obvious choice for me. No, not as a search engine, but for the whole suite of products including Gmail, Calendar and Documents. I use them all and share the Calendar with my husband as well as my listing partner. With Google Drive, we can easily collaborate on a project.

3. Nozebe was a new addition in 2014. Nozbe keeps you on track with your projects, organizes your next actions and helps with a recommended weekly review.  (You will recognize these terms if you are a GTD fan.) Nozebe will work with my Google Calendar as well as Evernote and Dropbox. It also syncs with my mobile devices. Whether on my desktop, smartphone or iPad, the interface is clean and intuitive to use. I felt like a project manager in just a day or two.

4. YouMail is another new addition in 2014 and one I’m now using instead of google voice.  I’ve seen this cool tool described as “visual voicemail”. It will send voicemail to email, will block calls, share voicemail, allow you to set up personalized greetings, do auto replies and voicemail to text.

5 . One of the most useful apps on my iPad is Logmein. It gives me the ability to access my desktop computer from my iPad.  When I travel, I only carry my iPad!

6. Even though I didn’t put this list in order, Evernote is certainly in my top three favorites. Evernote is a cloud-based collection manager. My life is organized with this app!  Scannable makes Evernote even more useful although you can use it without Evernote.

7. I use several different photo apps but my favorite for the ipad is Camera+.You don’t need to be a photographer to make your  photos look professional. I’ve been using this app for several years and haven’t replaced it as my favorite yet.

8. The newest app to my iPad dozen is Facebook Groups.  This app enables you to quickly view all of your groups in one location, making them easy to reach quickly. This is especially helpful if you manage a group on Facebook but also if you are a member of multiple groups.

9. BSafe  Technically speaking this is an iPhone or Android app but I really wanted to add it to my list. This free app activates a loud SOS alarm with one tap of the red button on your screen. As the siren goes off, the app's video recording feature is activated, and all your "Guardians" (the safety net of people chosen by you), receive a text message with link to your  GPS location as well as the video your phone has recorded.

10. Thank you Pro is my favorite new app for 2015. This app allows you to create and mail a professional looking card right from your iPad for $2.99 or less including postage! Your first card is free so give it a try.

11. RoboForm is another oldie from past lists. Simply put, Roboform Everywhere saves my passwords across mobile devices.

12. Waze is a turn-by-turn GPS app with a bonus. Waze records user locations and speed and creates a constantly updated map with traffic jams and construction delays. As more people use this app, it gets better and better.

And there it is, my list of favorite apps for the iPad for 2015!

About the author:  Linda Davis has been a licensed real estate agent in Ledyard CT for over 35 years. She has a long history of community service and currently serves as Chairman/Deputy Mayor of  the Ledyard Town Council. Linda is the administer of the popular Ledyard Community Forum on Facebook and also teaches and speaks on technology, mostly for beginners. Linda can help with homes for sale in Ledyard as well as homes for sale in Eastern CT including, Groton, Mystic, Stonington, Norwich, Montville, New London, East Lyme, or Waterford.

Ledyard Real Estate Update

MailIn addition to this blog post, I also send an email newsletter with links to new listings and sales. If you would like to be updated with Ledyard real estate information, feel free to SUBSCRIBE HERE.

Statistics in January are not very helpful as far as analyzing trends. Nine closed sales are not a good indicator of annual sales nor average prices. It is usually not until after the first quarter that we can start to see patterns. In 2014 it appeared that prices would actually be lower than 2013 but a number of higher priced sales in December saved the day.

The weather was the big story in January and February looks to be the same. Snow makes for rough going when it comes to showings and listing appointments. I've had one appointment canceled 4 times. While January is typically one of the slowest months of the year, snowy weather doesn't help real estate statistics.

Inventory is currently at 99 listings which is slightly higher than a year ago. Many of the new listings in January will look familiar to you as sellers who couldn't sell in 2014 are relisting their homes in 2015.

In the History of Ledyard Home Sales below you will notice that the total number of sales in Ledyard in 2014 was 192, not 191 as previously reported. This is due to a sale being reported late to the MLS.

2-8-2015 Ledyard Real Estate

The average list price (asking price) of the 99 homes currently on the market is $269,699. There are currently 25 homes pending with an average list price of $207,648. There are an additional 5 homes listed as pending -"show for backup" with an average listed price of $215,160.

History of Ledyard Home Sales

9 Closed Sales Reported in Ledyard during 2015
with a median sales price of $174,900

Ledyard Home Sales through 2014

 

Ledyard Real Estate Statistics - Last 180 Days

On February 8th, the Connecticut Multiple Listing Service shows a total of 90 contracts have closed in the last 180 Days with an average sold price of $216,040 (Median of $214,450. 

A total of 89 listings have expired in that same time period. This continues to be a large increase over previous months but sellers who haven't sold often take their homes off the market this time of year and hope for better results in the spring. Listings may expire for many reasons such as being priced too high,having been inadequately marketed, the property was in poor condition, or perhaps the owner had second thoughts about selling at this particular time. At this time of year, sellers often take their homes of the market due to the upcoming holidays.

Listings and sales reported by the members of the CT Multiple Listing Service, Inc and may not represent all sales. Information deemed reliable but not guaranteed. 

About the author:  Linda Davis has been a licensed real estate agent in Ledyard CT for over 35 years. She has a long history of community service and currently serves as Chairman/Deputy Mayor of  the Ledyard Town Council. Linda is the administer of the popular Ledyard Community Forum on Facebook and also teaches and speaks on technology, mostly for beginners. Linda can help with homes for sale in Ledyard as well as homes for sale in Eastern CT including, Groton, Mystic, Stonington, Norwich, Montville, New London, East Lyme, or Waterford.


Safety isn't just for Real Estate

BSafe in LedyardWith recent tragedies in the news, real estate agents have become more aware of safe practices as it involves the real estate profession. Offices are putting systems in place to protect their agents who often meet strangers at vacant houses. This past November, the National Realtors Convention Expo in New Orleans had numerous protection devices for sale as safety has become a huge concern of the industry. But it isn’t just real estate agents that need to protect themselves

I have tried a number of safety apps and the clear standout in my opinion is the B-Safe App. This free app available for both iOS and Android devices activates a loud SOS alarm with one tap on the red button on your screen. As the siren goes off a  video recording starts and all your Guardians (the safety net of people chosen by you) receive a text message with link to your live trace GPS location as well as the video your phone has recorded. Download it today.

About the author:  Linda Davis has been a licensed real estate agent in Ledyard CT for over 35 years. She has a long history of community service and currently serves as Chairman/Deputy Mayor of  the Ledyard Town Council. Linda is the administer of the popular Ledyard Community Forum on Facebook and also teaches and speaks on technology, mostly for beginners. Linda can help with homes for sale in Ledyard as well as homes for sale in Eastern CT including, Groton, Mystic, Stonington, Norwich, Montville, New London, East Lyme, or Waterford.


Ledyard Snowstorm Rule Number Two

With over 2600 members on the Ledyard Community Forum, I’ve found it necessary to have a few snarky rules for snowstorms including the Ledyard Mailbox Rule.

Ledyard Snowstorm rule #2 – (The Mailbox Rule) If you post that your mailbox was hit by a snowplow, I will delete your post. We have had that discussion here over and over and over again. Please call Public Works (860-464-9060) AFTER the storm has passed and the clean up is over. They MAY help under certain circumstances as several forum members can attest. If it was the heavy snow being pushed by the plow that knocks down your mailbox, you are on your own.

As a way of explanation, here is a photo of my dead mailbox. It was not a direct hit but rather a build up of snow and then more heavy snow being pushed up against it that killed my mailbox. I don’t expect the town to take care of it and you shouldn’t either. Blame it on mother nature.

Mail Box

You will find a complete explanation of the official Mailbox Rule in Ledyard Winter Operation Facts:  http://ledyardct.org/DocumentCenter/View/2854

Mailboxes may be damaged by direct contact with the plow or by the snow cast by the plow. The Public Works Department will repair damaged mailboxes only if damage is the result of direct contact with the plow; damage resulting from contact by only slush or snow will not be repaired, nor will damage resulting from improper installation, placement, or deteriorated condition of its post or support structure. 9 Accordingly, residents should evaluate the location and condition of their mailboxes. Mailboxes should be securely fastened to a sturdy post which is solidly anchored in the ground; residents should choose a mailbox assembly that will withstand exposure to the substantial weight of a heavy snow cast from a large plow. According to postal guidelines, mailbox door faces should be nine (9) inches from the road edge to avoid physical contact with the plow; the bottom of the mailbox should be between 42" and 48" above the road surface.If damage is sustained to your mailbox during a plowing event, you may contact the Highway Garage at 464-9060. Department personnel will inspect the damage and evaluate the situation according to the above guidelines. The Department will repair the damage if direct contact is confirmed.

About the author:  Linda Davis has been a licensed real estate agent in Ledyard CT for over 35 years. She has a long history of community service and currently serves as Chairman/Deputy Mayor of  the Ledyard Town Council. Linda is the administer of the popular Ledyard Community Forum on Facebook. Linda can help with homes for sale in Ledyard as well as homes for sale in Eastern CT including, Groton, Mystic, Stonington, Norwich, Montville, New London, East Lyme, or Waterford.


The Ledyard Community Forum Flake

David Runyan is a self-described “flake”. He captures the beauty of snowflakes using the Snow Studio III (SS3) and shares those macro creations with members of the Ledyard Community Forum. While members have offered to pay for copies of his art, he insists that all of his images are in the public domain for personal non-profit use. He is working on a website or facebook page for the public to be able to download and print his favorite creations. For now, we continue to enjoy them in our forum and even have a plan to name the next flake that he posts. This winter, Mother Nature has provided him with plenty of material to choose from.

Flake by David Runyan


New London County Real Estate by Town 2014

Each year the Eastern CT Association of Realtors creates statistics for residential single family home sales by town in New London County.  Median sale prices increased from 2013 – 2014 in 9 of the 21 towns listed including Ledyard, Lisbon, Lyme, New London, Old Lyme, Salem, Sprague, Voluntown and Waterford.  It is quite interesting to compare if you like analyzing numbers.

Town comparison charts for the past 3 years (Click year)

2012   New London County Single Family Home Sales by Town

2013   New London County Single Family Home Sales by Town

2014   New London County Single Family Home Sales by Town

2014 Closed Sales by Town

About the author:  Linda Davis has been a licensed real estate agent in Ledyard CT for over 35 years. She has a long history of community service and currently serves as Chairman/Deputy Mayor of  the Ledyard Town Council. Linda can help with homes for sale in Ledyard as well as homes for sale in Eastern CT including, Groton, Mystic, Stonington, Norwich, Montville, New London, East Lyme, or Waterford.


New London County Real Estate Market Insight

This report of Single Family Homes in New London County is generated by the 10th of each month with information from the previous month. It includes new listings, pending and closed sales in New London County for the month of December.

What’s up and what’s down from a year ago?  Year to date (YTD) inventory in December was up 20% and the number of closed sales were up 7%. Prices remain relatively flat and percentages vary from town to town.  For a complete (and easier to read) report including condos and single families CLICK HERE.
 
1-31-2015 New London County
 
The following chart of single family homes includes the number of closed sales in New London County month by month for the past year. Trends would indicate that the next strong closing month will be May. This would be a result of pending home sales primarily in March and April, the beginning of our traditional spring market.
 
1-31-2015 Closed Real Estate Sales New London County
Copyright © 2014 RealEstate Business Intelligence, LLC. All Rights Reserved.
Data Source: CoreLogic. Statistics calculated January 06, 2014.
 

About the author:  Linda Davis has been a licensed real estate agent in Ledyard CT for over 35 years. She has a long history of community service and currently serves as Chairman/Deputy Mayor of  the Ledyard Town Council. Linda can help with homes for sale in Ledyard as well as homes for sale in Eastern CT including, Groton, Mystic, Stonington, Norwich, Montville, New London, East Lyme, or Waterford.


Breaking CT Real Estate Finance News

Keith Turner - McCueFrom Keith Turner of McCue Mortgage: CHFA’s interest rate has dropped to the lowest point it has EVER been. This, in conjunction with the new lower FHA premiums, means that there has never officially been a lower monthly payment than right now on an CHFA/FHA mortgage.

For government loans (FHA, VA, USDA) the rate is 2.75% (2.625% for military) (2.50% if purchasing in New London)

For those using CHFA/HFA and CHFA/Conventional and putting 20% down, the rate is 3.125%.

With good inventory in many areas of Eastern CT, now is a great time to buy a home.  Really.


Ledyard Real Estate in 2014 - Just the Facts

The final figures for the Ledyard real estate market are now available and the news is good. There were 191 closed sales in Ledyard during 2014 which is about 7% higher than in 2013. The median closed price increased to $220,000, a modest 3%. A strong showing in December contributed to this increase. It appears at least in 2014, we are heading in the right direction.

Please feel free to email me for a list of all the homes sold in Ledyard in 2014.

2014 Closed Sales in Ledyard

Ledyard Home Sales through 2014

 

Listings and sales reported by the members of the CT Multiple Listing Service, Inc and may not represent all sales. Information deemed reliable but not guaranteed

About the author:  Linda Davis has been a licensed real estate agent in Ledyard CT for over 35 years. She has a long history of community service and currently serves as Chairman/Deputy Mayor of  the Ledyard Town Council. Linda can help with homes for sale in Ledyard as well as homes for sale in Eastern CT including, Groton, Mystic, Stonington, Norwich, Montville, New London, East Lyme, or Waterford. 

The Old Gales Ferry School

A recent comment in the Day newspaper about Ledyard’s School Building project still has me fuming. “Look at the mess in Gales Ferry with a rotting school still standing.”

Rotting school in Gales Ferry? I would invite anyone to visit the old Gales Ferry School at 7 Hurlbutt Road which houses SCRRRA and several other Ledyard businesses. A number of improvements have been made to the building using funds from the rent the town collects from tenants. It is generating income and far from rotting. And don’t forget that the town also sold a portion of the old Gales Ferry School property to house a CVS.

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