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MOM & ME....Mother's Day in Champaign/Urbana IL!

by Rose Price

Mother's Day is one of the most important days of the year for all of us, and we want to give you an opportunity to show your Mom just how special she really is to you!

We have created a special "Mother's Day" board on our Pinterest & Facebook page just for this very special day, dedicated to MOMS! All you need to do is submit YOUR favorite photo of you and your Mom along with a short paragraph- no more than 250 words- about what makes your Mom so special. Then email it to me: roseprice@champaignrose.com

On Saturday, May 7th I will select 2 finalist, based on their submissions and award a Gift Card to each winner.  You can then use this with your Mothers toward brunch, golf, shopping or whatever the two of you would like to spend time doing together!

So get writing and find your best photo....email it into me....and make Mom the center of attention like she so greatly deserves!

It’s everyone’s favorite day of the year...TAX DAY!!!

Ehh, not so much….

 

For all of you stressing over this infamous day, Marketwatch has some great advice. File an extension!! In an article posted by the news source, there are 7 excellent reasons why many people should consider an extension.

  1. You have a balance due and need more time to save up money to cover it. Give yourself that extra 6 months.

  2. Made charitable donations over $250 to one or more charities and don’t have the proper receipts (which must include the name of the charity, address, taxpayer ID number, and a statement that you did not receive any benefits or items of value for your donation) to submit with your taxes? The IRS is very strict on submitting the required documentation so an extension would give you an extra 6 months to get everything in order.

  3. Have you recently moved homes? Or are you planning to move within the next few months? If yes, it benefits you to submit an extension because the IRS may need to follow up with you on your taxes and they send all correspondence to the address you have on file.

  4. If you are waiting for K-1 forms from partnership entities, S-Corps, estates, or trusts you should file an extension.

  5. Sometimes rushing through your personal or business bookkeeping can cause sloppy or incorrect taxes. Don’t rush and do it right. File an extension to give you that extra time.

  6. Have a large balance this year? Making contributions to your 2015 retirement plan can help reduce that balance. File an extension if you would like to benefit from this. You have until October 15th to open or add to your retirement fund.

  7. And finally…. You still have questions regarding your taxes that you have not had answered. Give yourself some time to get everything settled.

Best of luck this tax season!

March 24th is the 75th anniversary of Chanute Airfield's Tuskegee Airmen! Champaign Illinois was the birthplace of the Tuskegee Airmen. These brave men showed incredible heroism and courage at a time of severe racism in our country and a belief that black soldiers were inferior to white, that they didn't have the capacity or fortitude sufficient to fly warplanes into battle. 

It wasn't until 1941 when A. Phillip Randolph pushed President Roosevelt to include Black Americans in combat roles, that they became eligible to fight. However, St. Louis and Detroit were the original designated locations for training sites, but neither city would allow these men to train in their airspace. it was Champaign County that stepped up and supported the program and offered Chanute Army Air Field to host the training.  This historical event took place during the week of March 19-26, 1941 at Chanute Air Field, Rantoul, IL for the Black Fighter Pilots. 

Later that fall, these fighter pilots were transferred to Tuskegee, AL but Chanute Air Field was kept as an integrated base for weatherman, armorers, fire fighters and mechanics.

On March 24, 1945, three Tuskegee Airmen shot down 3 German jets, marking the very first time American pilots shot down enemy jet fighters. 

While only 14 of the original Tuskegee Airmen are still alive today, there are many pilots who helped integrate the Army Air Corps. 

Our Illinois National Guard Armory will host a kick-off celebration on Thursday, March 24, designating Champaign County as the Birthplace of the Tuskegee Airmen March 1941.” The program will begin at 11:00 a.m. and last one hour. Following the event, the Champaign County Engineers will install the “Birthplace of the Tuskegee Airmen March 1941” signs on all US and IL highways entering Champaign County.

Various Veteran organizations throughout Champaign and Douglas counties will be on hand to commemorate the designation. The public is also encouraged to attend to celebrate the role of Chanute Air Field in this monumental time in our country’s history.

Photo Credit- VisitChampaign.org

Weekend Of Theatre In Champaign IL

by Rose Price

As You Like It
Parkland Theatre’s Second Stage

February 18, 19, 20, 25, 26, 27 at 7:30pm
February 28 at 3pm

A clever adaptation of As You Like It, secondly titled “Being the record of one company’s attempt to perform the play by William Shakespeare”. Many key scenes from the original are performed while the seven desperate players attempt, often hilariously, to cover all the parts and make some theater magic. Touching and very funny, it is a true tribute to the core theme of As You Like It … All the world’s a stage.
Seating in Parkland's Second Stage goes quickly.  So Reservations are strongly encouraged.

Ticket prices: Adult- $15 Student and Senior (65+)- $13 Youth- (12 and under) $9 Groups of 15 or more- $11 each

Open seating except for groups and those with medical needs.

Reservations

The Little Mermaid at the Virginia Theatre

‚ÄčFebruary 18, 19, 20 

7pm (2pm matinee* on Sat)

Champaign Central and Centennial High School Drama Departments have teamed up in the first ever joint production at the Virginia Theatre in Downtown Champaign.  This inaugural event will feature the full length Broadway Musical.  

Tickets: $15 Adult/$10 Student and Senior/$8 Children 10 and under

The production is being supported by Champaign Unit 4 School District, Central & Centennial drama departments, Champaign Park District, the Virginia Theatre, as well as private donations.

Support The Project!

A Mid Summer Night's Dream Lyric Theatre at Krannert Performing Arts Center

February 19 and 20 7:30 PM

February 21 at 3:30 PM

Benjamin Britten’s music creates enchanting, otherworldly landscapes which are the perfect compliment for the retelling of this romantic comedy. As rustic characters, royalty, and fairies entwine in the mystical woods at evening, love potions and mistaken identities create mischief and disorder which will only be dispelled as dawn arrives. Lavishly imaginative in story and in musical score, this production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream will surely beguile you!

Buy Tickets

More About the Lyric Series

 

Interested in more of what makes living in Champaign/Urbana so great?  Give Rose Price  a call. She'll be happy to make your dream of owning a home in Champaign/Urbana a reality!.  

Our community is filled with Arts & Cultural experiences of all types! Come and explore what makes the Champaign/Urbana area such an exceptional place to live!

Boost Wintertime Curb Appeal for your Champaign IL Home!

by Rose Price

BOOST YOUR HOME'S CURB APPEAL DURING THE WINTER MONTHS!

It's easy to do with these simple steps:

1. YES....I'll Take Door Number One!

If you want to make a great impression & be remembered...start with your entry door. Even a fresh coat of paint with new hardware can make a statement! Go for a "pop" of a coordinating color and you're in for an amazing transformation!

2. BRING ON THE GREEN!

Evergreen shrubs look terrific in pots on the porch and can add a great boost to the look of your Entry way!

3. SAFETY FIRST....

Be sure your walkways are clear of snow and ice. It's that simple It prevents injuries due to slip and falls, and a shoveled or plowed driveway creates clean line that look great and imply your property is well cared for.

4. SAY GOOD-BYE TO MR. & MRS. CLAUS

Once we've reached the New Year it's time to take down the Christmas Decorations and neatly pack them away and store them for next year's festivities. Nothing is worse than a home that is on the market at the end of January...still sporting it's Christmas finest!

5. PORCHIFY!

Your porch is an excellent assest....Spring, Summer, Fall or WINTER! If you have the space, set out a Rocking Chair with a Cuddly Winter Throw or Bistro Set that is perfect for your home type that you can "stage" for the season. Let your prospective Buyers visualize what an evening during warmer months may be like spending time out there!

The "Spring" Home Selling season is HERE!! If you're considering putting your Champaign/Urbana Home on the market, the time is NOW! Use these tips to give the front of your home the extra WOW factor that will make Home Buyers want to get in the inside and take a tour!

For more Home Buying Tips give Champaignrose a call at 217-202-8843 or visit my website at champaignrose.com. You can also get great tips and ideas from my Facebook & Pinterest Page!

January is Radon Home Testing Month!

by Rose Price

Has your Champaign/Urbana home been tested for Radon? If not, now is the perfect time to get it done! January is National Radon Action Month. As your Champaign/Urbana Real Estate Professional, I feel it’s my duty to inform you of the proper precautions and actions to take in order to protect yourself and your family from any possible radon exposure.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, radon (also known as a radioactive gas) is found at some level in almost every home and takes the lives of 21,000 Americans each year.  Did you know that the EPA and the U.S. Surgeon General have urged all Americans to protect their health by testing their homes, schools and places of business for radon? Because exposure to radon is a preventable health risk, testing radon levels in your home can help prevent unnecessary exposure and health issues! If a high radon level is detected in your home you can take steps to fix the problem and protect yourself and your family.

Here's what you need to do to Test your Home for Radon:

  • Get a Radon test kit & Test your Existing Home: Test kits are available for purchase online, however we would recommend completing the Home Radon Testing Checklist at the following website to ensure you do  a complete and accurate job of testing your home: RADON TESTING CHECKLIST. The Public Health District of Champaign County offers Free test kits at the following link: FREE RADON TEST KITS If you live outside the state of IL, check with your state government office for Free Radon testing kits. Some home goods and hardware stores also sell radon testing kits. Make sure to follow the instructions carefully for proper placement and information on where to send it afterwards to get your reading.
  •  
  • Call a Professional- If you'd rather not do the testing yourself, you can call a IL Radon Mitigation Professional and they'll come into your home and do all the testing for you.
  •  
  • If You Are Buying a Home…and the home has already been tested for radon, ask the
  • seller for the test results of the most recent radon test. You may also want to request that a new test be conducted by a professional radon tester. If a radon test has not yet been conducted, request it as soon as possible with your own specific preferences. You have the right to decide who will do the test, what type of test will be done and when the test will be done.
  •  
  • If You Are Selling a Home…and your home has already been tested for radon, review the facts and verify it was done correctly. If so, make sure the test results are available to your potential buyers. If your home has not been tested for radon, get the test done as soon as possible; preferably before your home goes on the market.

The presence of radon in your Champaign/Urbana Home can be dangerous and life threatening. While smoking causes cancer in an estimated 160,000 people a year, radon can cause lung cancer in both smokers and non-smokers alike. Radon is the number one cause of lung cancer in non-smokers, and radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer overall.  

The World Health Organization (WHO) launched an international radon project to help countries around the world increase awareness, collect data and promote action to reduce radon risks. Radon in our homes is the main source of exposure and up until now has not received widespread attention. Get the facts about radon and make sure your family is safe from its dangers. If you are buying or selling a home, take the proper precautions to radon-proof your home before it’s on the market or before you move in.

For more Home Buying and Selling Tips visit my Blog and Facebook Page  frequently. 

Top 9 Universities In Illinois. One Is In Champaign IL!

by Rose Price

Nine universities in Illinois have been ranked among the nation’s best by U.S. News & World Report, and two of them have been ranked in the top 12.  

Even more exciting...Guess who comes in at #3 in Illinois?... That's right! The University of Illinois–Urbana-Champaign.  

It doesn't surprise me, after all, it is the #11 Ranked Public University in the country. The Students and Faculty here are pioneers of innovative research, tackling global problems and expanding the human experience ever single day! Alumni of the University Of Illinois-Champaign-Urbana continue to make a significant and positive impact on our human society and with 18 Pulitzer prize winners, their track record is pretty remarkable. So it is to them we say, 

Congratulations!!!  

We are proud to have you in our communities.

The following criteria was used to rank the schools: Undergraduate Academic Reputation, Freshmen Retention Rates, Six-Year Graduation Rates, ACT/SAT Test Scores, Class Sizes and Faculty Resources, Admissions Selectivity, Financial Resources and Alumni Giving.  The analysis was based on the class that began in the fall of 2014. 

According to the report, its two “pillars” upon which the rankings were based:

"First, regionally accredited schools are categorized by their mission, which is derived from the breakdown of types of higher education institutions as refined by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching in 2010. The Carnegie classification, which is used extensively by higher education researchers, has been the basis of the Best Colleges ranking category system since our first rankings were published in 1983…"

"Once schools have been divided by category, we gather data from each college on up to 16 indicators of academic excellence. Each factor is assigned a weight that reflects our judgment about how much that measure matters. Finally, the colleges and universities in each category are ranked against their peers, based on their composite weighted score."

As the report on the rankings points out, there are dozens, if not hundreds, of “intangibles,” or other factors that go into college choice decisions by students and their families. On top of the metrics measured by U.S. News & World Report, finances, location, student life, areas of specialty, sports, student activities and many other factors must be considered before enrollment. There is no real way to account for all of these intangible variables, but this list helps quantify a small portion of the variables facing future college students.

*The test scores are displayed as a range of scores of whichever test (SAT/ACT) taken by the most students

1. University of Chicago

National rank: 4

Acceptance rate: 8.8 percent

6-year graduation rate: 93 percent

Test score range: SAT math and verbal: 1430-1590

2. Northwestern University

National rank: 12

Acceptance rate: 13.1 percent

6-year graduation rate: 94 percent

Test score range: SAT math and verbal: 1390-1560

3. University of Illinois–Urbana-Champaign

National rank: 41

Acceptance rate: 59 percent

6-year graduation rate: 84 percent

Test score range: ACT composite: 26-32

4. Loyola University Chicago

National rank: 99

Acceptance rate: 63.3 percent

6-year graduation rate: 73 percent

Test score range: ACT composite: 25-29

5. Illinois Institute of Technology

National rank: 108

Acceptance rate: 50.6 percent

6-year graduation rate: 65 percent

Test score range: ACT composite: 25-31

6. DePaul University

National rank: 123

Acceptance rate: 69.9 percent

6-year graduation rate: 71 percent

Test score range: ACT composite: 23-28

7. University of Illinois–Chicago

National rank: 129

Acceptance rate: 72.7 percent

6-year graduation rate: 60 percent

Test score range: ACT composite: 22-27

8. Illinois State University

National rank: 149

Acceptance rate: 73.9 percent

6-year graduation rate: 72 percent

Test score range: ACT composite: 22-26

9. Southern Illinois University–Carbondale

National rank: 153

Acceptance rate: 81.7 percent

6-year graduation rate: 44 percent

Test score range: ACT composite: 19-26

The report also listed these Universities in Illinois that were scored but unranked. These schools didn’t fit into the parameters used by U.S. News to rank the schools (they might not use the SAT or ACT tests to admit students, for example), or they might not have been ranked by enough peer schools for the report authors to gather an accurate picture of the schools.

The Illinois schools on the unranked list are:

Benedictine University

National Louis University

Northern Illinois University

Trinity International University

Interested in more of what makes living in Champaign/Urbana so great?  Give Rose Price  a call. She'll be happy to make your dream of owning a home in Champaign/Urbana a reality!.  

Top 100 School Districts in Illinois!

by Rose Price

Once again the Champaign/Urbana IL area has 3 area school districts that have earned spots on the highly coveted list of the TOP 100 SCHOOL DISTRICTS IN ILLINOIS for 2016! With 863 School Districts in Illinois, earning a spot on this list isn't an easy task, you have to be truly outstanding in virtually every category. For the 3 School Districts that have found their way to this list, I feel they exemplify this type of achievement in their school programs on a daily basis. These districts are:

URBANA SCHOOL DISTRICT #116

 

 

TUSCOLA COMMUNITY UNIT SCHOOL DISTRICT #301

 

MOUNT ZION COMMUNITY UNIT SCHOOL DISTRICT #3

 

 

 

 

Brrrr… Simon & Pharis here… Talking about Winter!

 

Winter is a time when your beloved fur babies need a little extra care. So here is a little list of tips to protect your loved ones from the dangers of winter.

 If your pet spends most of the time in the backyard, you might want to keep them indoors during the freezing months, especially if you live in bitterly cold areas. No one wants an icicle for a pet -- they’re simply not that cuddly. But If you must keep your pet outdoors, consider this, your pet’s fur coat isn’t enough protection during winter. Provide your dog with a warm, dry and draft free shelter outside. The shelter should also comply with any state laws that apply.

 

It takes more energy to stay warm when it's cold so outdoor animals will eat more during the winter. Likewise, fresh, running water is vital for maintaining your pet's health. Keep an eye on the water bowls and make sure they haven’t turned into little skating rinks for fleas (boo, fleas!). While ice pops might be a fun treat, your pet really doesn’t want to have to lick a frozen lump of ice to get his water.Meanwhile, Indoor animals have different dietary needs. They conserve energy by sleeping more in the winter. Dogs and cats also exercise much less when they do go outside, so you may need to adjust their amount of food accordingly. After all, no one wants an overweight pet!

 

Frostbite is a serious problem during winter, especially for paws, tips of tails and ears. This makes it even more important in keeping your pet warm, especially if they’re an outdoor pet. Get special booties, coats, and maybe a hat for your pet during their walks. Look for early warning signs of frostbite such as firm, waxy skin and blisters.


 

The worst of all the wintertime chemical spills is antifreeze, which often leaks from a car's radiator. It may taste delicious to your cats or dogs, but it is extremely deadly - even the smallest sip can be fatal! If your pet starts acting "drunk" or begins to convulse, take him to the vet immediately. Better yet, keep your pets away from the garage and clean up any accidental spillage. You should also not let your dog wander too far during his walks. Who knows what dangers lie in your neighbors' driveways?

 

If you live in an area with cold and icy winters then you are probably accustomed to salt on the sidewalks and roads. However, the types of salt (typically calcium or sodium chloride) used to melt ice and snow and keep it from refreezing are somewhat harsh on delicate paws -- not to mention they corrode concrete and damage the beautiful vegetation. Protect your pet's paws, and keep him warm during walks, by outfitting him with booties.

 

Cars are particularly attractive to animals in the winter-time, especially frigid cats that love to climb up under the hood and curl up on the warm motor. This, as you can imagine, has led to many mishaps when motorists start their car… ouch! Avoid such accidents by tapping your car's hood before starting the vehicle. Sure, you may wake Kitty from her deep slumber, but she'll thank you in the long run.

 

Wintering with your pet is mostly common sense. If you’re cold, your beloved pet will most likely be cold too. So snuggle up, keep your pet warm and safe and sooner than you can say "Spanish Terrier" we’ll all be hitting the beaches for some summertime fun.

 

New Year's Resolutions For Your Champaign IL Home

by Rose Price

New Year’s Resolutions for your home!  We all know that sticking to our resolutions is harder than we expect, but don’t let your home suffer.  Here are the most popular Home related resolutions and how to get them done!  Make this year the year you stick to and achieve all of your home resolutions. Best of all, these improvements will add great value to your Home.    

1. Rebuild the Deck

Are your decks looking old and grey?  Even more so than looking bad, old decks can be unsafe.  Even FEMA has warned about these dangers; especially poorly flashed decks, which can fall off of homes and cause bodily injury to you, your family or guests. Make needed repairs now.  

We recommend an annual 6-point deck check to identify problems you should address so that accidents don't occur. 

 

2. Seal Drafts

Homes get cold in the winter, especially if you have an older home, but newer ones have drafty area's as well.  However, there are simple ways to reduce these chilly home temps.  Cold air is very likely leaking in from several recognizable areas around your house (windows, walls, outlets).

Give yourself an energy audit. It’ll cost around $400 to have a professional come in, or you can do it yourself (see the video below).  The pros will provide you with a report detailing your home's draft problems, but will also include a cost-effective solution.

If your windows are in rough shape, but the frames are sound, then you can replace your windows (install high-efficiency replacement windows) for around $500-$600/piece. You’ll most likely want a professional to install these.

 

Lastly, consider Blown-in Insulation for your walls, which fills the stud bays of exterior walls with heat-retaining cellulose material.

3. Update Your Kitchen Cabinets

Tired, outdated kitchen cabinets?  Kitchen renovations are the most expensive home-improvement projects. But you can add value to your home with these simple budget kitchen-cabinet upgrades. Instead of spending a minimal $5,000 on new cabinets, you can save big and reface the ones you have for under $1,000. Other money-saving options include painting your cabinets and, swapping out your cabinet pulls and hinges for new ones.

 

4. Add Curb Appeal

Curb appeal can add 10%-30% more value to your home!! Bet you weren't counting on that!  Here are some of the projects to look at to add curb appeal: 

Install Storm Windows

Paint Your Exterior

Privacy in the yard

Motions Detecting Lighting

Lamp Posts

 

5. Upgrade the Walkway

If you are thinking of re-routing your walkway, there are several options.  Brick & Gravel can be done in a single weekend, whereas concrete is a little more involved but offers a longer lifespan. You can also add special features like a pond at the end of a walk-way or small flower garden. 

6. Go Green On Top

Green Roofs aren't that prevalent here in the Fox Valley, but many area's have gone more to the eco-friendliness of them. Here are the reason some people are trending toward the "Green Roof" Movement:   

They reduce storm runoff

Absorb pollutants, 

give plants more room to grow, 

Best of all… They lower heating and cooling bills by providing insulation. 

If your dream green roof is too complex to install, check out development kits.  Green roofing is getting easier every day

7. Basement Makeover

Just do it!  Whatever your dream basement is, do it!  This is the year.  Whether you want to make it into a chic Mom's relaxing area, man cave for Dad & the guys, a game room for the kids, or an Exercise Room to accomplish your New Year's Resolutions....This is the year to Finish your Basement and Add Value to your Home!  

8. Paint Your Interior

This is one of the easiest on the list.  Start with one room and build momentum until every room is freshly painted.  It will do wonders for your home. 

1. First, select the proper hues with the help of a color wheel. 

2. Then, get the right equipment for the job.

3. Brush up on the best painting techniques from the pros…hem hem, YouTube!

4. Finally, paint the rooms!

 

9. Get The Little Things Done

There are always a handful of small repairs and the list grows throughout the year, becoming more and more frustrating.  Just fix this stuff.  Now, do these first.  They are simple things and you will feel a lot better when you check these things off your list.  Then, let this momentum continue through the rest of your changes. 

1. Fixing your outlets, or changing over to new ones.

2. Patching holes in walls where pictures, shelves or other wall hangings used to be.

 3. Recaulking Bathroom & Kitchen Sinks and Showers.

Good luck to you and all of your New Year’s projects.  If you are fixing up your home to put it on the market, give Champaignrose a call!  

Displaying blog entries 51-60 of 97

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Rose Price
Landmark Real Estate
One East Main Street, Suite 200
Champaign IL 61820
217-202-8843
217-352-1933
Fax: 217-378-1281