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What’s New in Legislation for Homeowners?

by Mary Gilbert


Owning a home can be expensive, though the benefits of home ownership typically outweigh the cost. Occasionally, changes to the law at either the state or national level can affect how these benefits and costs affect you. This is especially true if you’re still considering whether or not to buy a house, since knowing how the law stands can have a big impact on your final decision.

 

Some legislation affecting homeowners is enacted at the federal level, while other bits of legislation come from the state. Because of the significant differences in the reach of these different types of legislation, it can be hard to cover all of the changes in law that affect homeowners from year to year. To help keep you informed, though, here are some fairly recent legislation trends that may be worth looking into.
 

Tax Break Changes

One big change that’s hitting a lot of homeowners hard is the elimination of some tax breaks that were formerly offered for home ownership. While this doesn’t directly affect the cost of owning a home, it can have a significant impact on your tax return if you were expecting to qualify for one of these expired breaks. Tax law is complex and can change from one year to the next, so it’s possible that these breaks (or others like them) will see a return in future years. However, it’s important to check each year before filing your taxes to make sure that you haven’t gotten mixed up by tax break changes or missed a break that you could have qualified for.
 

Roof Replacement Costs

In some areas, the law allowed homeowners to replace their roof without all of the costs normally associated with such a big job. This was due to contractors being allowed to waive a portion of their fees equal to the deductible on the customer’s homeowner’s insurance. Unfortunately, changes in the law are starting to shut this down. States like Texas are changing the law so that contractors caught waiving the deductible could face fines or even jail time. Homeowners obviously aren’t big fans of such changes, since they result in more out-of-pocket expenses when having to use their homeowner’s insurance.
 

Solar and Alt Energy Incentives

There were a number of solar and alternative energy incentives available to homeowners at both the state and federal level, but some of these have been altered, were negated or simply expired without renewal in the last year or two. In some cases, federal programs have been replaced by state programs that provide similar incentives. In other cases, the incentives have been revamped and renewed later. Not all tax breaks and other incentives have been renewed, though, so it’s important for homeowners to confirm that specific programs still exist before depending upon them to add alternative energy solutions to their homes.
 

Home Loan Changes

It seems like there are significant changes to home loans every few years – and recent years have been no exception. Fortunately for those wanting to buy a new home or refinance an existing loan, some recent bits of legislation have expanded on borrowing limits for certain types of loans without adding new restrictions. Unfortunately, many of these laws affect lending through state-level programs instead of making adjustments to loans at the federal level. Some also only affect certain types of homes or houses that are built for specific uses. If you’re waiting for changes to federal loan programs, you may have to wait a bit longer before those programs see major updates.
 

Consult the Experts

It’s hard to stay on top of the changes in laws from one year to the next. Having a lawyer or real estate expert to help you sort through all of it can be a great way to keep from being caught unprepared by these new laws. Contact The Mary Gilbert Group at 541.371.5500 or [email protected]

 

By: Homekeepr, Rob Morelli 

Wishing You a Haunting Halloween!

by Mary Gilbert

What is Mischief Night?

by Mary Gilbert


If you haven’t heard of Mischief Night, it’s possible that you’ve lived in an area where it’s not really celebrated. It’s also possible that you lived in a city such as Detroit, Baltimore or New Jersey where it might have been known by a different name like Devil’s Night, Goosey Night or even Moving Night (which is supposedly a reference to stolen porch furniture). Assuming that you’ve never heard of it because it isn’t a big deal where you’re from, you might think that you don’t need to know anything about it. Watch out, though – that line of thinking could be ill-advised.

 

With more details about Mischief Night pranks being shared online, more and more young people participate in the festivities every year. This includes some areas that had never experienced Mischief Night pranks before. You also might need to know about it if you’re considering moving to a new area, since just because they don’t celebrate it where you’re from doesn’t mean they won’t celebrate it where you’re making your new home. Either way, this is what you should know about this unofficial holiday.
 

What Is Mischief Night?

Though it’s gained more popularity in recent years, Mischief Night as a holiday dates back at least to the late 1700s. The holiday consists of children and teenagers engaging in a variety of pranks and other activities, up to and including theft and vandalism in some cases. Common activities on Mischief Night include tossing toilet paper into trees, throwing eggs at houses and cars, setting off fireworks, ringing doorbells and running away, and smashing pumpkins or jack-o-lanterns. More destructive practices sometimes include spray paint vandalism, breaking car or house windows and other acts of vandalism, though these are much less common.
 

In New Orleans and some other communities, in recent years, Mischief Night has also involved walking parades with floats and people in costume. These parades are typically unorganized and not officially sponsored as part of any holiday’s festivities, however. Fortunately, these more violent parades and demonstrations are not common in most areas where Mischief Night is regularly observed.
 

When Is Mischief Night?

In most places, Mischief Night is celebrated on October 30th as something of a pre-Halloween celebration. There are some areas, especially in the United Kingdom, where Mischief Night is celebrated on November 4th instead as a precursor to Bonfire Night; for those who aren’t familiar with this celebration, it is also known as Guy Fawkes Day and is a day of remembrance and thanksgiving for the failure of the Gunpowder Treason Plot perpetrated by Guy Fawkes and others. The holiday is celebrated much the same as it would be on October 30th, however.
 

Interestingly, there are some areas (primarily in Germany) where Mischief Night is celebrated on May 1st instead of falling in either October or November. This is because of an old connection with May Day which was part of the holiday’s origin; no one is really sure why Mischief Night moved from May to October or November, but the change appears to have occurred sometime in the 19th century. The fall dates seem a much better fit for the holiday, however – and that’s when Mischief Night takes place for nearly every observing community these days.
 

What Can You Expect on Mischief Night?

In most cases, Mischief Night is a night of largely harmless pranks and practical jokes. Egging and toilet papering properties are the most common pranks, along with smashing pumpkins and ringing doorbells. Most of the perpetrators are children and young teenagers, as older teens and adults might face legal penalties for actions that younger children would only get a warning for, if caught. For the most part, the worst you’ll likely see on Mischief Night is a mess to clean up the next day.
 

It’s important to be aware of occasional larger problems such as vandalism and destruction of property, however. Mischief Night is a good night to park your car in the garage and bring in loose porch furniture, just in case. Even though you’re unlikely to experience any major problems, it never hurts to be prepared.

 

Contact The Mary Gilbert Group at 541.371.5500 or [email protected] for ALL your Real Estate needs! 

By: Homekeepr, Rob Morelli

Trick-or-Treat Home Safety

by Mary Gilbert


In just a few days the streets of your neighborhood will be filled with children, and some parents, who will be costumed and carrying bags and buckets for Halloween treats!  Since many homeowners don’t regularly use the front entrance to their home, they may 
not think about all the little feet that will be tramping up the path to your door.  Make sure everyone has a safe trip for their candy by following these tips before October 31! 

 

  • - Do your own walk-up to your front door, and examine everything, including the driveway and front steps.  Make sure there are no loose pieces or large cracks that can cause anyone to take a tumble.  Porch railings should be secure.
     

  • - Yard decor should be fixed securely so the wind can’t blow it over, or curious little hands cannot pull it down.
     

  • - Battery-operated LED tea lights are inexpensive and much safer to use in place of lighted candles.  Many options are available for LED’s, including a flickering light that is perfect for your jack o’ lantern. 
     

  • - Speaking of lights, make sure that not only is your porch light switched on, but that the path you’ve created is well-lit. 
     

  • - Decor that hangs from the trees is scary and fun, so make certain they are hanging at least ten feet from the walkway, making certain they don’t obstruct anyone’s view. 
     

  • - Take an afternoon close to Halloween to be sure any shrubbery, trees or edging isn’t in the way of where trick-or-treaters must walk.  Inspect for loose branches in nearby trees and remove them. 

  • If you have room in the garage, consider parking the car there.  The folks that are coming and going would likely appreciate the extra room to pass others. 
     

  • - A constantly-ringing doorbell or persistent knocking can cause your pets some distress and a lot of barking.  Confine them to a room, or even better, to their crate.  Check out these other great tips about your pets and Halloween from the ASPCA. 


Contact The Mary Gilbert Group at 541.371.5500 or [email protected] for ALL your Real Estate needs! 

Photo credit: wisconsinrapidstribune.com


T'was a terrible thing that Cyril had done. Those poor children did not stand a chance… so much blood. It was enough to bring strong men to their knees when they entered the house. Nobody figured out why. It was just easier to forget what had happened, demolish the house, burn the debris, and bury them in the large pit. Several years later The National B.P.O.E bought the land and the Roseburg Elks Lodge rose from the ground over the very same spot.

If you and yours are brave enough , come see what takes place at Cyril’s House of Horrors!

Friday, October 25, 2019
Saturday, October 26, 2019
Thursday, October 31, 2019

Roseburg Elks Lodge
749 SE Jackson Street
Roseburg, OR

Event Website

Courtesy of The Mary Gilbert Group

Photo Credit: facebook.com

Deliveries, Security and You

by Mary Gilbert


In our modern always-connected world, it seems like we’re always having packages dropped off from one re-tailer or another. If you receive packages regularly while you’re not home, though, you may be setting yourself up for problems. Packages left alone on your porch invite thieves to come up and take them, and if there are regularly people coming to your property to drop deliveries off then your neighbors might not think that it’s strange when one more person walks up with a box… even if it turns out to be a burglar with the foresight to throw on a brown shirt and carry a package.

 

So how can you make sure that your package deliveries aren’t creating a big risk for you? There are a few ways.
 

Establish a Delivery Area

When placing orders online, you often have the option to provide instructions to delivery drivers to make sure that your packages are delivered correctly. If you’re concerned about how frequent deliveries affect your home security, you can use these instructions as a powerful tool to thwart would-be thieves. Set up a delivery area around your home that’s covered or otherwise protected but not directly adjacent to your home and leave instructions for drivers to place any packages there. If possible, place the delivery space in an area that is clearly visible from neighboring houses as well. Because this designated area stands on its own, anyone entering it to try and steal packages will be very visible. It also foils would-be burglars because they now have no convenient excuse to approach your house.
 

Set Up Security Cameras

One thing that you can do to keep both your home and your packages safe is to install security cameras around your front door. This will allow you to see who’s coming to your house and will also provide evidence in case a burglar or thief approaches. If someone comes on your porch and steals your packages, you’ll have video of the thief and you’ll have proof that a theft took place so you can file a claim with the shipping company or retailer. You can even put cameras in an external delivery area if you’ve set one up! Make sure that you purchase a high-quality camera, though; cheap security cameras provide grainy and washed out footage that makes it very difficult to identify a perpetrator.
 

Invest in Smart Monitors

If you’re worried that a burglar might dress as a delivery person to gain access to your property, consider installing smart monitors on your windows and doors. These monitors may or may not be part of an alarm system – but setting off an alarm isn’t all that they can do. When triggered, the devices can notify you not only that a window or door was opened but also which one was triggered. This allows you to call a neighbor or notify the police and provide very specific details as to where a potential burglar entered. In some cases, the monitors may even be integrated into locks so that you can lock windows or doors remotely if you realize that you left them unlocked, taking care of a mistake that might have given a burglar easy access to your home.
 

Install a Security System

If these solutions don’t do enough to keep your packages and your home safe, consider getting a full home security system installed. These systems are more than just alarms; they contain several components that work together, along with active monitoring to contact the authorities or take other action if something suspicious occurs. Best of all, they can protect your home from other problems such as fires and even water leaks.
 

Keep Your Home Secure

Contact The Mary Gilbert Group at 541.371.5500 or [email protected] for ALL your Real Estate needs! 

By: Homekeepr, Saro Cutri

Do You Really Need New Cabinets?

by Mary Gilbert


Are you in the market for some new cabinets? While it might seem like a good idea at first, replacing your cabinets might end up being more of a hassle than you expect. Take heart, though! You may be able to give your cabinets a refresh for a lot less money (and stress!) than getting full replacement cabinets. If you’re not happy with your cabinets, here are a few options to consider before you rip them out completely.

 

Adding a Coat of Paint

One of the simplest fixes you can make when it comes to your cabinets is simply adding a new coat of paint. So long as the cabinets themselves are still in decent shape, painting them can completely renew your kitchen and turn drab or ugly cabinets into virtual works of art. This can help you to match your cabinets to new appliances or a new decorating style and is also a huge help if your cabinets are a bit old and have simply faded or peeled with time. Just make sure that you take the time to do this job right; slapping new paint on top of a peeling finish without sanding or trying to cover stains and discolorations without a coat or two of primer is just asking for trouble.
 

New Doors and Fixtures

If your cabinets need a little more than just a coat of paint, consider upgrading their hardware as well. Handles, hinges and other fixtures are easy to replace and can completely change the look of your cabinets with relatively little work. You can also replace latches or cabinet locks while you’re at it, helping those cabinets that always seem to hang open to finally stay shut when you close them. If your problems are a bit more severe and you have damaged, warped or otherwise bad-looking cabinet doors, you can change them as well! New doors will completely revitalize your old cabinets and can be a great solution if the cabinet body and shelving is still in good shape. Best of all, if you still want to add a coat of paint you can easily paint the new doors before mounting them – much easier than doing it after they’ve been hung.
 

Refacing Your Cabinets

Ok, so maybe your cabinets need a little more work than just new doors but the shelves and interiors are still in good shape. This is where refacing comes in. When you reface your cabinets, you’ll not only replace the doors and fixtures but you’ll also add veneer or other coverings to the outside of the cabinet body as well. This will cover up any cracks or other damage as well as unsightly stains, giving you the look of a fresh install at a fraction of the work. You won’t have to actually remove the cabinets but everyone who enters your kitchen will think that you did!
 

Do You Need New Cabinets?

If the interiors or the shelves in your cabinets are warped, damaged or otherwise in rough shape, you might have to go ahead and replace the full cabinets. The process is fairly straightforward, insofar as it just involves removing the old cabinets and putting new ones in. It may cost more than you expect, though, and the process is often a little more involved than that basic description makes it sound. If the cabinets need to go, though, don’t settle for substandard cabinetry just because you don’t want to do a full replacement. The solutions above are great when they work, but if your problems are too severe for them then by all means get some new cabinets in there.

 

Contact The Mary Gilbert Group at 541.371.5500 or [email protected] for ALL your Real Estate needs! 

By: Homekeepr, David Weinstein

Making an Offer is a Process

by Mary Gilbert


While you’re on the house hunt, every property you see just might be “the one.”  It’s a good idea to learn the different aspects of buying a house before you get into them.  Many discover that after they’ve made an offer of purchase, the process isn’t exac
tly as they’d envisioned! You’ll feel confident when you get to this step by following this guide: 

 

  • - The offer itself isn’t just a price you’re willing to pay for the property; closing date, closing cost contribution, contingencies, or the earnest money deposit are all things that are normally included when the offer is submitted to the seller. 
     

  • - Talk with your agent before you come to your initial price, because you don’t want to insult the seller with a very low offer, nor do you want to pay too much for the house. 
     

  • - Although you won’t always get a complete answer, knowing why the house is on the market can give you some leverage, so ask anyway. Some sellers are in a time crunch and are eager to sell and may take your first offer. 
     

  • - Keep in mind that there are legal aspects to writing a proposal.  Your Realtor will know all the aspects of this part of the process and will take you through each step. 
     

  • - It is very likely that the seller won’t accept your price if it’s less than what they’re asking.  If they want to sell and have no higher offers, they may choose to send a counteroffer.  The counteroffer step is nothing to worry about, if the negotiations are getting you somewhere.   
     

  • - Some sellers will counteroffer with their original asking price.  If this happens, you may have to walk away, as they have shown they’re not interested in moving away from what they want for the property.

  •  

  • - Don’t forget that you may not be the only buyers interested in the home!  Realtor.com® offers some advice on how sellers might handle multiple offers and some ideas on how to make your offer stand out. 

 

When your offer is accepted, it’s exciting, but there is still work to do!  Hopefully, you have pre-approval for a mortgage, making the buying process a much smoother one.  There are added costs associated with buying a home, so be sure you have your finances in order. 

 

Contact The Mary Gilbert Group at 541.371.5500 or [email protected] for ALL your Real Estate needs! 

Photo credit: newsday

282 Kellisha Lane: Charming Home in Desirable Melrose!

by Mary Gilbert

Roseburg OR Real Estate For Sale
282 Kellisha Lane, Roseburg, OR  97471

Charming one-story traditional secluded on 3+ acres in desirable Melrose! Beautiful tongue and groove vaulted ceilings with exposed wooden beams, and a river rock floor to ceiling fireplace create the heart of the home in this one of a kind living room. The impressive ceilings continue into the eat in kitchen where an abundance of cabinetry and counterspace waits to assist in all your meal prep needs. A skylight fills the room with tons of natural light. Enjoy so much extra living space in the cozy family room, plus a separate den or home office featuring vaulted ceilings with exposed beams. A large laundry room provides tons of storage. Retreat to a soothing master suite with plush carpeting, double closets and a private bath. The two secondary bedrooms, one with a lovely window seat, share a full bath and provide tons of room for a growing family. Enjoy endless evenings of family BBQ’s on the spacious, covered deck overlooking the sprawling backyard and views of the surrounding mountains. Appreciate space for your hobbies, tools and vehicles in the RV shop with power and hook ups, plus a 20x20 workshop. Escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life, simply by coming home! Make your appointment today to see this unique Roseburg property!

Mary Gilbert, Licensed Realtor in Oregon has distinguished herself as a leader in the Roseburg OR real estate market. Mary assists buyers looking for Roseburg OR real estate for sale and aggressively markets Roseburg OR homes for sale. 

Mary, Licensed Realtor in Oregon brings with her a keen eye for the details of buying or selling a Roseburg OR home and seemingly boundless determination and energy, which is why her clients benefit from her unique brand of real estate service. Rooted in Tradition, Focused on the Future –Mary Gilbert of Keller Williams Realty Umpqua Valley will help make the most of your Roseburg OR real estate experience. Give her a call today, 541-371-5500, and discover the difference she can make during your family's move.

October 19, 2019 – 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM

Hosted by: Roseburg Public Library
1409 NE Diamond Lake Blvd.
Roseburg, OR

Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library is a book gifting program that mails free, high-quality books to children from birth until they begin school, no matter their family’s income.

After launching in 1995, the program grew quickly. First books were only distributed to children living in Sevier County, Tennessee where Dolly grew up. It became such a success that in 2000 a national replication effort was underway. By 2003, Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library had mailed one million books. It would prove to be the first of many millions of books sent to children around the world.

Come celebrate our launch of Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library in the Roseburg area! We will have story-time, crafts, and snacks.

Courtesy of The Mary Gilbert Group

Photo Credit: imaginationlibrary.com

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Contact Information

Photo of Mary Gilbert Real Estate
Mary Gilbert
Keller Williams Realty Umpqua Valley
2365 NW Kline Street, Suite 201
Roseburg OR 97471
541-371-5500
Fax: 541-371-5501

© Keller Williams Realty, Inc. is a real estate franchise company. Each Keller Williams office is independently owned and operated. Keller Williams Realty, Inc. is an Equal Opportunity Employer and supports the Fair Housing Act.