Monthly Archives: December 2006

Wigley house for sale flyer

Robbie created this Wigley house for sale flyer (PDF) that she’s having photocopied this week.

We’ll put them up on community bulletin boards around Northfield.

And we’ll soon have a brochure box in our yard that’ll have a stack of them available for interested people who drive by.


Tilstra house for sale near Northfield

darwin_tilstra.jpgDarwin Tilstra took a walk through our house over the holidays. Darwin and his son Micha are fellow racquetball players. He’s also a coffeehouse laptop jockey like me, working as a as Genetic Improvement Manager for Norsvin USA.

tilstra_house1.jpgHe’s very interested in our house but he’s got one of his own on the market. So I thought I’d help him sell it!

Here’s a description on the Edina Realty listing page for the house:

Absolutely gorgeous country style home, redone from studs to redesigning & everything new. Very elegant with custom architecturally designed interview, from flooring to appliances to the solid oak throughout home. You have to see it to truly appreciate it.

11678 Kane Avenue Northfield, MN 55057
MLS#: 3095534
Price: $549,000
Contact: Brian Trebelhorn

For sale by owner (FSBO): $299,900

We’ve decided to sell our home ourselves — big surprise. Since I’m a blog coach, I’ve been itching to find out if a homeowner’s house-for-sale blog be an effective way to sell a house — especially in a buyer’s market like we’re currently experiencing.

Our asking price: $299,900. How did we arrive at that?

  • 2001 appraisal of $283,000; appreciation until late 2005 but then a buyer’s market in the past year
  • $80,000 of hailstorm repairs (new roof, siding, gutters, screens, windows, ceilings)
  • Comparison to other houses currently on the market in the 55057 Northfield zip code. According to, as of today, there are 312 single-family homes for sale in 55057, and 27 single-family homes in the $275,000 to $325,000 range.
  • In that batch of 27, there appears to be only one older-style home similar to ours. It’s at 407 6th St E, MLS ID#: 3294142, listed for $309,900 by RE/MAX Results / The Kuyper Group, which has a more detailed listing of that house here.
  • We think their house has some advantages over ours: new floors, central air, concrete driveway. We think our house has some advantages over theirs: Victorian-style exterior, full ‘new’ basement, much larger lot (86 x 165 vs theirs at 65 x 99).
  • We could easily justify pricing our house the same, i.e., $10,000 more than we’re asking. But with 26 other houses on the market in this price range, it seems prudent to be a little more aggressive on price.

This week I’ll investigate getting a FSBO yard sign with a brochure dispenser, as well a directional sign for the end of our street where it intersects with Woodley. And once I get the brochure done, we’ll tack up a few on public bulletin boards around the Northfield area — various coffeehouses, grocery stores, etc. We’ve already notified the colleges, Carleton and St. Olaf.

In January, we’ll place the house on Mpls/Twin Cities Craigslist (where it’ll also end up on the map mashup and then maybe pay an FSBO service the fee to get it listed on the MLS. In the meantime…

Call now!! Operators are standing by!! Not available in stores!!

The last Christmas in the Wigley house

We’re not doing a lot of Christmas decorating this year since we’re, um, focused on getting the house sold and ready to move.

But since it’s the last of our 17 Christmases in this lovable old house, and all the kids and both grandmas will be here, we (well, Robbie, mainly) just had to dress it up a bit.

I took these photos of the living room tonight without a flash so the walls look yellow. Click to enlarge.

Jingle Bell Run

The folks at Carlson Capital Management and Fifth Bridge hosted this morning’s 5th Annual Jingle Bell Run, one of many running/walking/fundraising events held in Northfield each year. This year’s beneficiary: the Northfield Area Family YMCA.

Left: 5th Bridge volunteer Blake Abdella making a pitch to a prospect
Left Center: Skip Zimmerman, Northfield YMCA executive director seeking wardrobe advice from Kevin O’Connell
Right Center: YMCA Board Member Emily Monaghan snuggling with two creatures
Right: Barry Carlson (far right) recovering with some of the many runners who finished ahead of him.

Click photos to enlarge and see 5 dozen more in 2006 Jingle Bell Run album.

Stair treads

IMG_5691.JPG IMG_5682.JPG
Robbie bought stair treads for the basement stairs a few months ago and she waited til last weekend to put them on (left photo – click to enlarge). We liked them so much we decided to put them on the main stairway.