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Cheers to a Happy New Year!

by Mary Gilbert


It’s Just Another Auld Lang Syne

Should auld acquaintance be forgot,

And never brought to mind?

Should auld acquaintance be forgot,

And auld lang syne.


I’m sure you’ve heard this song during the holiday season and like many, have wondered what it means. The character Harry in the film When Harry Met Sally asked, “What does this song mean?  My whole life I don’t know what this song means. I mean, ‘should old acquaintance be forgot’? Does that mean that we should forget old acquaintances or does it mean that if we happen to forget them, we should remember them, which is not possible because we already forgot?” To which Sally replied, “Well, maybe it just means that we should remember that we forgot them or something. Anyway, it’s about old friends.”

Sally got it partially right. In 1788 a man named Robert Burns sent the poem ‘Auld Lang Syne’ to the Scots Musical Museum. He told them that it was an ancient song, but that he had been the first to record it on paper.  The phrase ‘auld lang syne’ roughly translates as ‘for old times’ sake’, and the song is all about preserving old friendships and looking back over the events of the year. It is sung all over the world, evoking a sense of belonging and fellowship and a touch of nostalgia. So, when Auld Lang Syne comes on the radio or is played at a New Year’s Eve party you are attending, think about the meaning behind the words…remember 2016, the good times and the bad, and keep the friends and family that were there for you close to your heart.

Here are some fun facts about New Year’s Eve:

  • If you are in Las Vegas, Disney World or New York City on December 31st, you will be in one of the three most popular places to ring in the new year in the United States.  Sydney, Australia is the most popular spot for celebrating internationally.
  • The first New Year’s celebration dates back 4,000 years to when Julius Caesar was the Emperor of Rome.  He was the first to declare January 1 a holiday.
  • Forty-five percent of Americans make New Year’s resolutions. The top resolutions are to lose weight, get organized, spend less, save more, improve health and quit smoking.  Approximately twenty-five percent of Americans give up on their resolutions by the second week of January.
  • Many people ring in the new year by popping a bottle of champagne. Nearly 360 million glasses of sparkling wine are consumed by Americans on New Year’s Eve.
  • About 1 million people gather in Times Square in New York City to watch the ball drop. The Times Square New Year’s Eve ball drop came about because of a ban on fireworks. The first ball in 1907 was 700 pounds and was lit with 100 25-watt lights. The current ball puts the old one to shame (thanks to technology). Today, it is covered in 2,688 crystals, is lit by 32,000 LED lights, weighs 11,875 pounds and is 12 feet in diameter.

No matter how you choose to celebrate the end of 2016 and the beginning of 2017, have a safe, happy and healthy NEW YEAR! 

The award-winning Douglas County Museum of History and Natural History is located at I-5 exit #123 one mile south of Roseburg at 123 Museum Drive.


The museum's displays offer a fun and exciting learning adventure and has Oregon’s largest natural history collection on display. Open Tuesday – Saturday from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm. Admission charged. Tours available. Call 541-957-7007.

See website for more information:

Umpqua Valley Museums


Courtesy of Mary Gilbert, Roseburg Properties Group






Roseburg OR Real Estate For Sale
254 Boardwalk Way, Roseburg, OR  97471

Enjoy river views from this custom built home in the desirable Fisher Rd neighborhood! Just waiting for you to arrive, this one level home is located on a quiet street where a gated driveway leads you to a beautiful 1.05 acre park like setting. Soaring high ceilings, durable tile floors, neutral paint colors, ample storage space, tons of natural light, attached 2 car garage, plus 3 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms are just the start of all that 254 Boardwalk Way has to offer. Vaulted ceiling, exposed beams and a large window creates a comfortable living room for everyday life. The vaulted ceilings continue into the formal dining room where you will love hosting guests. An abundance of cabinetry, huge cooking island, recessed lighting, and a built in desk highlight this kitchen set to inspire a chef! Flowing right into the family room with gas fireplace and French doors to the deck, this house offers the perfect layout for indoor/outdoor enjoyment. Plush carpeting, a walk in closet and private bathroom invite you to relax in this lovely master suite. Two secondary bedrooms have plentiful closet space and a shared full bathroom. Convenient laundry room with connecting full bath keeps you organized. Outdoor entertaining will be a delight on the huge back deck overlooking the manicured yard offering easy access to the river for fishing and swimming. Start living the good life at 254 Boardwalk Way – make your appointment today!

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 Eugene Springfield 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.

New Year, New Home? 7 Resolutions to Keep Your Place in Tiptop Shape

by Mary Gilbert

OK, we’ll be your mom for a moment: When you own a home, it’s high time you form good habits to properly maintain your property. After all, it’s your biggest investment, and in the same way you brush your teeth twice a day (or at least we hope you do, and floss too!), you should do what it takes to keep your home in great shape, too.

“Good habits mean setting a regular maintenance routine and sticking to it,” says John Riha, author of seven books on remodeling. “A house is like a big animal that needs constant care and attention. Your house will reward you with lower energy bills, smaller repair costs, and a more comfortable, beautiful home environment.”

So, it’s time to make—and keep—some New Year’s resolutions, homeowners. Let others nag you about working out regularly, cutting back on the nightly Singapore slings, or volunteering regularly at the Retired Magicians Assisted-Living facility. No, we’re asking you to focus on your biggest and most beloved asset. Trust us, your home will repay your TLC big-time.

Resolution No. 1: I will turn off the lights

When incandescent bulbs were in every home, everyone knew to turn off the light when they left the room, for heaven’s sake. But now that good-quality, energy-conserving options like compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) and light-emitting diodes (LEDs) have arrived, the money-saving game has changed. The CFL lifetime is shortened each time you turn the bulb on and off, according to the U.S. Energy Department. To save money on bulbs, keep the CFL light on if you’ll return to the room within 15 minutes. LEDs’ life span, on the other hand, is not affected by turning them on or off. That’s why they’re a good candidate for lights that work with motion-detecting sensors.

Resolution No. 2: I will remove my shoes, and compel others to do the same

The best thing you can do for your floors, carpets, and overall home hygiene is to remove your shoes and boots before you enter your house. A 2014 study by University of Houston researchers found that Clostridium difficile spores, which cause difficult-to-treat gastrointestinal problems, were found on almost 40% of shoe bottoms tested. Gross! Shoes also track in mud, allergens, and other nasties that are best left at the door.

Resolution No. 3: I will put money regularly into a maintenance fund

It’s a fact: Appliances break, water drips, HVAC systems fail, and they all cost money to fix or replace. In general, experts say you should stash 1% of your home’s purchase price annually for a maintenance fund, or put aside $1 per year per square foot. Automate the payment so you don’t have to think about it, and that way once your boiler breaks, the money will be there waiting for you.

Resolution No. 4: I will conduct mini-inspections

Just because your ceiling isn’t dripping and your house isn’t leaning off-kilter doesn’t mean all is well. In the spring and fall, inspect your place to get a firm grip on what needs attention.

  • Inspect your home’s exterior, and look for worn and peeling paint, rotting wood, and cracked caulk.
  • Before the weather grows cold, turn on the heat to make sure it works as it should.
  • If you burn wood in the fireplace, have the chimney cleaned before you start building fires in winter. (If you’ve never used the fireplace, be sure to have it inspected first.)
  • Climb a ladder and look for missing or buckled roof shingles.
  • Walk around the yard and see which trees and shrubs aren’t leafing out, a sign they are dead or dying.


Resolution No. 5: I will wash my windows regularly

Dirty windows not only look ugly, they also block light that brightens and heats your home for free.

“Clean windows will add a feeling of space and light to your home,” says Lee Williams, a Realtor® with New York City’s Level Group.

Wash your windows on a cool and overcast day, which will reduce spots and streaks. And after removing dirt with soapy water, make them sparkle by spraying on a 1:1 solution of water and white vinegar, then wipe dry. While the frequency will vary based on how dirty your windows get, aim for once every quarter.

Resolution No. 6: I will change HVAC filters monthly

A dirty, dusty HVAC filter will slow airflow and make your system work harder, which wastes energy and shortens the life of your furnace and air-conditioning units. Get into the habit of checking filters monthly, and replace or clean them when crud starts building up. At the very least, change the filter every three months.

Resolution No. 7: I will declutter a bit each day

Don’t wait for stuff to pile up in your home, which will wreck its look and your mood. If you don’t use it, toss or donate it; if you take it out, put it back; and if you open it, close it. One painless way to declutter is to put away five objects every time you enter a room. And, choose at least one thing a day to remove from your home. Put the item in a box, and donate/toss/gift the box when it’s full.

Just like Mom said, right?


If you are getting your house cleaned up and ready to sell in 2017, make sure to visit, call 541.371.5500 or email [email protected] to get started! 



Top 5 Reasons You Should Not For Sale By Owner

by Mary Gilbert

Top 5 Reasons You Should Not For Sale By Owner | Keeping Current Matters

In today’s market, with home prices rising and a lack of inventory, some homeowners may consider trying to sell their home on their own, known in the industry as a For Sale by Owner (FSBO). There are several reasons why this might not be a good idea for the vast majority of sellers.

Here are the top five reasons:

1. Exposure to Prospective Buyers

Recent studies have shown that 94% of buyers search online for a home. That is in comparison to only 17% looking at print newspaper ads. Most real estate agents have an internet strategy to promote the sale of your home. Do you?

2. Results Come from the Internet

Where did buyers find the home they actually purchased?

  • 51% on the internet
  • 34% from a Real Estate Agent
  • 9% from a yard sign
  • 1% from newspapers

The days of selling your house by just putting up a sign and putting it in the paper are long gone. Having a strong internet strategy is crucial.

3. There Are Too Many People to Negotiate With

Here is a list of some of the people with whom you must be prepared to negotiate if you decide to For Sale By Owner:

  • The buyer who wants the best deal possible
  • The buyer’s agent who solely represents the best interest of the buyer
  • The buyer’s attorney (in some parts of the country)
  • The home inspection companies, which work for the buyer and will almost always find some problems with the house
  • The appraiser if there is a question of value

4. FSBOing Has Become More And More Difficult

The paperwork involved in selling and buying a home has increased dramatically as industry disclosures and regulations have become mandatory. This is one of the reasons that the percentage of people FSBOing has dropped from 19% to 8% over the last 20+ years.

The 8% share represents the lowest recorded figure since NAR began collecting data in 1981.

5. You Net More Money When Using an Agent

Many homeowners believe that they will save the real estate commission by selling on their own. Realize that the main reason buyers look at FSBOs is because they also believe they can save the real estate agent’s commission. The seller and buyer can’t both save the commission.

Studies have shown that the typical house sold by the homeowner sells for $185,000, while the typical house sold by an agent sells for $245,000. This doesn’t mean that an agent can get $60,000 more for your home, as studies have shown that people are more likely to FSBO in markets with lower price points. However, it does show that selling on your own might not make sense.

Bottom Line

Before you decide to take on the challenges of selling your house on your own, sit with Roseburg Properties Group and see what we have to offer. 541.371.5500 or [email protected]


The True Meaning of Christmas!

by Mary Gilbert







“But I am sure that I have always thought of Christmas time, when it has come ‘round…as a good time, a kind, forgiving, charitable, pleasant time; the only time I know of, in the long calendar of the year, when men and women seem by one consent to open their shut-up hearts freely.”

Charles Dickens


The True Meaning of Christmas

Per Wikipedia, the "true meaning of Christmas" is a phrase with a long history in American pop culture. It first appears in the mid-19th century, and is often given vaguely religious overtones, suggesting that the "true meaning of Christmas" is the celebration of the Nativity of Christ. But in pop culture usage, overt religious references are mostly avoided, and the "true meaning" is taken to be a sort of introspective and benevolent attitude as opposed to the commercialization of Christmas which has been lamented since at least the 1850s. The poem A Visit From St. Nicholas (1822) helped popularize the tradition of exchanging gifts, and seasonal Christmas shopping began to assume economic importance. An early expression of this sentiment using the phrase of "the true meaning" is found in The American magazine, vol. 28 (1889):

"to give up one's very self — to think only of others — how to bring the greatest happiness to others — that is the true meaning of Christmas".

The phrase is especially associated with Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol (1843), in which an old miser is taught the true meaning of Christmas by three ghostly visitors who review his past and foretell his future.

The topic was taken up by satirists such as Stan Freberg and Tom Leher during the 1950s and eventually by the influential TV special A Charlie Brown Christmas, first aired in 1965 and repeated every year since. The phrase and the associated moral became used as a theme in numerous Christmas films since the 1960s.

As you gather with family and friends to celebrate this year, take time to think about the origins of some of the traditions of Christmas.

  • Santa Claus – his story begins in the 4th century with St. Nicholas, the Bishop of Myra (an area in modern day Turkey). St. Nicholas was known to be a generous man especially devoted to children. Because he was so kind and benevolent, rumors began that he could perform miracles.  He became the patron saint of Russia and was known for his red cape and flowing, white beard. He has his own feast day that is celebrated on December 6…a day of gift giving and charity. The story of St. Nicholas was passed down through generations and his name transformed over time. The Dutch called him Sinterklaas. Dutch children would leave their wooden shoes by the fireplace and Sinterklaas would reward good children by placing treats in their shoes. This tradition traveled to America with Dutch colonists and here the Anglican name of Santa Claus emerged.
  • Christmas Trees – the decorating of fir trees originated in 16th century Germany where trees would be adorned with apples, roses, candies and colored paper.  The Christmas tree was brought to England by Queen Victoria’s husband, Prince Albert, from his native Germany.  The first Christmas trees in America were introduced by Pennsylvania Germans and became popular by the middle of the 19th century.
  • Mistletoe – mistletoe was used by Druid priests 200 years before the birth of Christ in their winter celebrations. They held the plant in high esteem because it had no roots, yet remained green throughout the winter season.  The ancient Celts thought that the plant had magical healing powers. It was also seen as a symbol of peace and it was said that when enemies met under mistletoe, they would lay down their weapons and embrace. Scandinavians associated the plant with Frigga, the goddess of love. This is perhaps where the custom of kissing under the mistletoe began.  It is thought that those who kiss under the mistletoe have the promise of happiness and good luck in the year to come.
  • The Christmas Wreath – The Christmas wreath is another tradition that has been around for a long time.  The first wreaths were created from fresh evergreens. Because they are green year round they were the obvious choice for winter months.  The word “wreath” is derived from an English word meaning “to twist”, such as in a circle.  Some believe that initially wreathes were hung on doors in Ancient Rome to represent victory.  The circle shape with no beginning or end represents eternity or life never ending.

While celebrating with these ancient traditions and with your own family traditions this year, may you be surrounded by peace and joy. 

Exploring Roseburg Oregon #13: Play in the Snow at Diamond Lake

by Mary Gilbert


Diamond Lake has the ideal snowy setting for all your favorite winter recreation activities.  Weather your snowboarding, cross country skiing or tubing the hillside, there is plenty of winter fun to be had at Diamond Lake.




Start: January 1, 2017

End: January 31, 2017


Venue: Diamond Lake Resort
350 Resort Dr. 
Diamond Lake, OR 97731 United States + Google Map

Phone: 800-733-7593

Courtesy of Mary Gilbert, Roseburg Properties Group

Roseburg OR Real Estate For Sale
257 Martha Drive, Winchester, OR 97495

Welcome home to 257 Martha Drive, a one of a kind Winchester property! This 4 bedroom home was built for entertaining with a flowing floor plan, vaulted ceilings, wood floors, 2 story foyer, newer roof and carpet, plus a recent 1400 sq ft addition bringing the total sq ft to 3800! Cooking will be a sheer delight in the wonderful kitchen flourishing with stainless steel appliances, tile backsplash, walk in pantry, and eating bars on both sides. A gas fireplace is the focal point in the spacious living room, plus a great dining space with French doors. An oversized family room with built in bar and a media room like no other featuring a 6x10 ft screen, 7 way Eclipse surround sound, 2 row stadium seating, 9 reclining chairs, custom stage, projector, and an LED starlight ceiling are just some of the awesome features. A master suite sure to impress features plush carpeting, window seat with storage, walk in closet, bonus closet, soaking tub, dual sinks, and tiled shower. A custom built laundry room with oak cabinetry and a bonus room off the master suite offers so many options. Built ins, abundant closet space, and ceiling fans highlight the 3 secondary bedrooms, plus a shared full bathroom. This is the “WOW” outdoor space - spacious, manicured and fenced yard, private covered patio, in ground pool, hot tub and custom built slate shower, plus an oversized 3 car garage with RV and ATV parking. This home has something for everyone - make your appointment today!

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 Eugene Springfield 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.


Student Loans = Higher Credit Scores

by Mary Gilbert

Student Loans = Higher Credit Scores | Keeping Current Matters

According to a recent analysis by CoreLogic, Millennial renters (aged 20-34) who have student loan debt also have higher credit scores than those who do not have student loans.

This may come as a surprise, as there is so much talk about student loans burdening Millennials and holding them back from many milestones that previous generations have been able to achieve (i.e. homeownership, investing for retirement).

CoreLogic used the information provided on rental applications and the applicants’ credit history from credit bureaus to determine if there was a correlation between student loan debt and credit scores.

The analysis concluded that:

“Student loan debt did not prevent millennials from access to credit even though it may delay their homebuying decisions.”

In fact, those with a higher amount of debt actually had higher credit scores.

“Renters with student loan debt have higher average credit scores than those without; and those with higher debt amounts have higher average credit scores than those with lower student loan debt amounts.”

Bottom Line

Millennials are on pace to become the most educated generation in our nation’s history, with that comes a pretty big bill for education. But there is a light at the end of the tunnel:

“Despite the fact that student loan debt has grown into the nation’s second largest consumer debt, following mortgage, and has created a significant financial burden for millennials, it does not appear to prevent millennials from accessing credit.”

If you are debating buying a home, visit Roseburg Properties to get started. We are here to answer all your home buying questions. 541.371.5500 or [email protected] 


2 Tips to Ensure You Get the Most Money When Selling Your House

by Mary Gilbert

2 Tips to Ensure You Get the Most Money When Selling Your House | Keeping Current Matters

Every homeowner wants to make sure they get the best price when selling their home. But how do you guarantee that you receive maximum value for your house? Here are two keys to ensuring you get the highest price possible.

1. Price it a LITTLE LOW 

This may seem counterintuitive. However, let’s look at this concept for a moment. Many homeowners think that pricing their home a little OVER market value will leave them room for negotiation. In actuality, this just dramatically lessens the demand for your house (see chart below).

2 Tips to Ensure You Get the Most Money When Selling Your House | Keeping Current Matters

Instead of the seller trying to ‘win’ the negotiation with one buyer, they should price it so that demand for the home is maximized. By doing this, the seller will not be fighting with a buyer over the price, but will instead have multiple buyers fighting with each other over the house., gives this advice:

“Aim to price your property at or just slightly below the going rate. Today’s buyers are highly informed, so if they sense they’re getting a deal, they’re likely to bid up a property that’s slightly underpriced, especially in areas with low inventory.”

2. Use a Real Estate Professional

This too may seem counterintuitive. The seller may think they would net more money if they didn’t have to pay a real estate commission. With that being said, studies have shown that homes typically sell for more money when handled by a real estate professional.

Research posted by the National Association of Realtors revealed that:

“The median selling price for all FSBO homes was $185,000 last year. When the buyer knew the seller in FSBO sales, the number sinks to the median selling price of $163,800. However, homes that were sold with the assistance of an agent had a median selling price of $245,000 – nearly $60,000 more for the typical home sale.”

Bottom Line

Price your house at or slightly below the current market value and hire a professional. That will guarantee you maximize the price you get for your house. Find out how much your home is worth and get it listed with Roseburg Properties today! 541.371.5500 or [email protected] 


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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
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.