See the Real Homes of ‘Breaking Bad’

Saddle up and take a deep breath, all of you tense-with-anticipation fans of “Breaking Bad.”

Jesse Pinkman and Walter White from “Breaking Bad.” Source: AMC

Jesse Pinkman and Walter White from “Breaking Bad.” Source: AMC

That’s the advice from Peter Gould, the writer of the penultimate episode of the genre-bending TV series that’s set to conclude at 9 p.m ET Sunday on AMC.

What’s going to happen?!

“I think they should do some deep breathing. Sit in a comfortable chair. Try not to eat for 45 minutes before. Each of these episodes screened, and I’m so excited about the response,” said Gould, who penned last week’s intensely fraught “Granite State” episode.

In addition to turning the concept and execution of a TV drama series on its head, “Breaking Bad” also has contributed to the pantheon of TV shows that have turned certain swaths of real estate into co-stars. In the case of “Breaking Bad,” the showplace has been Albuquerque, NM, where a string of real locations have become tourist attractions and photo opportunities throughout the five seasons of the Emmy Award-winning show.

The dusty, rocky, light-infused desert location of this monster series gave it a particular look and feel. In homage to the show’s conclusion, here’s a look at the places where Walter White and his “Yo-Yo” sidekick, Jesse Pinkman, go from artistic meth-makers to drug kingpins in the ABQ.

My name is …

Source: Google Street View

Source: Google Street View

As Walt begins his transformation from suburban-dwelling teacher to drug lord, the very first words uttered on the show place him squarely at the imagination-deprived dwelling in which he somewhat cowardly had been just getting by:

“My name is Walter Hartwell White. I live at 308 Negra Arroyo Lane, Albuquerque, New Mexico.”

In reality, Walter’s home is at 3828 Piermont Dr NE, Albuquerque, NM 87111.

Either way, by the end of the series, the condition of Walt’s home mirrors his own descent into hell. Gasoline has been soaked into the rugs. The pool is a sordid mess of scum and leaves. And there’s a chain-link fence run around the entire perimeter of the property, since the Drug Enforcement Administration is hunting for Walt.

No, Mr. White, you can’t go home again.

Yo, like, Jesse Pinkman lived here

Source: Google Street View

Source: Google Street View

 

For a punk druggie, Jesse Pinkman lives in a very nice crib. But very soon into Season 1, we learn the house where Walter and Jesse make quite a mess was left to Jesse by his aunt. Without spoiling any more of the plot, let’s just say that Jesse finds himself out of luck at the nice abode.

On the show, the address is shown as 9809 Margo St. But in reality this single-family home on a quarter-acre lot is at 322 16th St SW, Albuquerque, NM 87104. The Huning Castle neighborhood,where homes are listed for sale from $220,000 to just shy of $1 million, is located near the Albuquerque Country Club.

Hank and Marie’s house

Source: Google Street View

Source: Google Street View

Hank is a federal Drug Enforcement Administration officer. He is married to Marie, who is the sister of Walter’s wife, Skyler. Tracking with us so far? Anyway, Hank and Marie are a big part of the show, and their superior station in life compared to Walt and Skyler’s is demonstrated by their nice stucco home at 4901 Cumbre Del Sur Ct NE, Albuquerque, NM 87111.

Duplex love

Source: Google Street View

Source: Google Street View

It’s not easy finding a rental when you have no job or documentable source of income, but Jesse manages to finesse an apartment from an intriguing property manager. Better yet, for Jesse, the attractive property manager lives next door in this stucco duplex, which really does exist at 325 Terrace St SE, Albuquerque, NM 87106.

Peekaboo

Source: Google Street View

Source: Google Street View

Jesse earns his reputation as a stone-cold killer after a wild scene that takes place in the downtown Albuquerque home at 217 13th St NW, Albuquerque, NM 87102. But the episode’s real dramatic tension comes from a dirt-smudged and neglected child of meth-heads who startles Jesse. In the middle of the impending violence, Jesse shows his tender side by connecting with the kid — via a game of peekaboo.

This article was originally published by Laura Vecsey on Zillow Blog. See the original article here

Questions to Ask Real Estate Agents When Selling

The real estate agent’s role is to smooth the home sale process, from setting the price to closing the deal. Before you hire an agent, interview several to determine their suitability for your transaction. The agent should be a good match for your style, your neighborhood, and the buying population you are targeting.

Questions to ask Real Estate Agents When Selling

Once you have chosen an agent, they will help you set your home’s asking price. For that, it’s important to know how much comparable homes in the neighborhood have sold for. Your real estate agent will also advise you about improving your house for higher profits.

Find the Right Agent for You
Start by getting recommendations from friends and family. Ask if their agent was attentive, answered their questions, and pursued all leads. Next, peruse local listings and advertisements to see who’s selling nearby. Arrange interviews with three or four real estate agents. Some important questions to ask them:

  • What are your credentials? At the very least, the agent should have a state license. A higher level of reassurance comes from Realtors, who belong to the National Association of Realtors®, which requires ethics training and adherence to a Code of Ethics.
  • How many sales did you make last year? Choose someone with a strong history of success. This does not guarantee your home’s successful sale but heads you in the right direction.
  • Where do you usually work? Someone who sells in your neighborhood is likely to understand the target buyer and market your house appropriately.
  • Do you have a sales plan? The agent should be able to provide a written marketing plan, including where they will advertise the house and how they will help you prime your house for sale.
  • Are commissions negotiable? Usually, the real estate agent takes a 3 percent commission from the seller. Ask each agent you interview about willingness to reduce the price.
  • How often will you communicate? Your agent should update you just about every day.

Ask Your Agent How to Sell Your Home
Once you have chosen an agent, take advantage of their knowledge about houses and the market. Ask questions about your planned sale, such as: Is the home ready to be sold in its present condition, or are improvements absolutely necessary? How much have comparable homes in the neighborhood been selling for? Is now a good time to sell, or should I wait for the seasons — or the economy — to turn? What is the home’s current worth? What is the asking price that I should set? Once I put the house on the market, how long can I expect to wait to sell?

Question Your Agent About Home Improvements
Your real estate agent’s expertise will guide you to make the home repairs that bring the most bang for your buck. Ask the following:

  • Which upgrades and repairs are absolutely necessary, and which would not make a big difference in the house price?
  • Which upgrades are considered standard in your area’s housing market? For example, is gutting and renovating your bathrooms necessary?
  • Which home improvement jobs cost little but improve a home’s cachet?

Some experts say that a remodeled kitchen is always a draw, but ask your agent whether that’s the case in your neighborhood.

How Should You Stage?
Before showing your house, ask your real estate agent about how best to stage it. The agent will advise you aboutminimizing clutter, arranging furniture and infusing it with pleasing scents. Ask your agent what items you should get rid of, or hide, before potential buyers come to view your home.

Sell Your Home Successfully
Proper preparation for a home sale is essential. If you choose the right agent and ask the right questions, your home should sell quickly and smoothly, and for the right asking price.

This article was originally published on realtor.com. To see the original article, click here.

Why to Use a Realtor When Selling Your Home

Selling a house can be a complex process. A Realtor can help you at every stage, from setting a price to marketing the property to closing the sale.

Why Use a Realtor When Selling Your Home

Setting the Price
The selling process generally begins with a determination of a reasonable asking price. Your real estate agent or Realtor can give you up-to-date information on what is happening in your local marketplace, as well as the price, financing, terms and condition of competing properties. These are key factors in marketing your home and selling it at the best price. Often, your agent can recommend repairs or cosmetic work that will significantly enhance the salability of the property.

Marketing
The next step is a marketing plan. Marketing exposes your property to the public as well as to other real estate agents through a Multiple Listing Service, other cooperative marketing networks, open houses for agents, and so on. In many markets, a substantial portion of real estate sales are cooperative sales; that is, a real estate agent other than yours brings in the buyer. The Realtor Code of Ethics requires Realtors to use these cooperative relationships when they benefit clients.

An agent will also know when, where and how to advertise — which medium, format and frequency will work best for your home and your market. Though advertising can be valuable, the notion that advertising sells real estate is a misconception. National Association of Realtors studies show that 82 percent of real estate sales are the result of agent contacts from previous clients, referrals, friends, family and personal contacts.

Providing Security
When a property is marketed with an agent’s help, you do not have to allow strangers into your home. Agents will generally prescreen and accompany qualified prospects through your property.

Negotiating
Your agent can help you objectively evaluate every buyer’s proposal without compromising your marketing position. This initial agreement is only the beginning of a process of appraisals, inspections and financing — a lot of possible pitfalls. Your agent can help you write a legally binding, win-win agreement that will be more likely to make it through the process.

Monitoring, Renegotiating and Closing
Between the initial sales agreement and the closing (or settlement), questions may arise. For example, there are unexpected repairs that require the buyer to obtain financing, or a cloud in the title is discovered. The required paperwork alone is overwhelming for most sellers. Your agent is the best person to objectively help you resolve these issues and move the transaction to closing.

Getting the Realtor Guarantee
All real estate licensees are not the same. Only real estate agents who are members of the National Association of Realtors are called Realtors. They proudly display the Realtor logo on their business card, website, and marketing. Realtors subscribe to a strict code of ethics and are expected to maintain a higher level of knowledge of the process of buying and selling real estate. Realtors are committed to treating all parties to a transaction honestly. An independent survey reports that almost 85 percent of home buyers would use the same Realtor again.

Getting Expert Assistance
Finally, consider the scale of your transaction. Selling your home is one of the biggest financial decisions you’ll make. Transactions today usually exceed $100,000. If you had a $100,000 income tax problem, would you attempt to solve it without the help of a CPA? If you had a $100,000 legal question, would you deal with it without the help of an attorney? Considering the relatively small cost of hiring a Realtor and the large potential risk of not hiring one, it’s smart to find a professional to sell your home.

This article was originally published by Ron Schmeadick on realtor.com. To see the original article, click here.

Buying a Home in the Fall

The real estate market is open 365 days a year – yes, even on holidays – but there are cyclical trends to the marketplace. Some of those ups and downs are based on mortgage interest rates and housing availability, but some are based on season.
Buying a Home in the Fall

Next to spring, fall is the busiest season for home buying and selling. Autumn offers certain benefits to home buyers, including year-end tax breaks, pleasant weather conditions for moving and a wide selection of homes for sale. Read on to learn the advantages of buying in the fall.

Year-End Tax Breaks
Come September and October, people start to think about what year-end tax breaks they might be eligible for. Fortunately for home buyers, owning a home can yield great dividends in tax returns. For example, both mortgage interest and property taxes are deductible from gross income. Furthermore, if you have prepaid some interest before the due date of your first payment, and if you close your loan before the year’s end, that interest can also be deducted.

Getting Ahead of Mother Nature
Buying a house before the deep freeze of winter sets in is very appealing to most home buyers. No one wants to worry about icy roads, snowstorms or blackout conditions on moving day, nor is it fun to move in sweltering summer heat.

School Year and Holidays
By wintertime, kids have settled into school, established friendships and become involved in extracurricular activities. Moving in summer would be least disruptive to your children’s schooling or social calendar, but autumn is next best. Also, by moving in fall, you’ll be settled snugly into your new home before Thanksgiving and the winter holidays.

More Home Choices
While home demand is not as keen in fall as it is in spring, it’s still high, so competition can be high, too. Fall buyers and sellers tend to be motivated to move, unlike the window-shoppers who sometimes come out in spring.

You may experience pressure to buy, due to the quick turnaround of houses on the market, but you’ll also benefit from the broad selection of homes available. In fact, between September and December, you may be able to visit several open houses in a single day, and listings will be updated frequently. Therefore, to make sure you don’t miss out on your dream house, it’s a good idea to regularly check listings and check in with your Realtor.

Fall Home-Buying Tips
Given the home-buying competition and the short, pre-holiday timetable in autumn, you may be tempted to place a bid that is out of your price range, for fear of losing the home. Before you make an offer, know what kind of house you need and what you can realistically afford, and stick to your budget. You may want to explore prequalifying for a loan so that you’ll be ready to act when you find the home you want. And as always, whatever season you buy in, buy at the best time for you and your family, and hold out for the right house – there are always more homes to see and to choose among.

Deena Weinberg originally wrote this article on realtor.com. To see the original, click here.

10 Tips to Prepare Your Home for an Open House

Few buyers want to buy a house sight unseen. Holding an open house is a great way to get many potential buyers through the door, but first you must make sure your home is ready to be seen. Buyers need to envision how they’ll use the available space, and that means staging your home so that it looks inviting but not too lived-in.
10 Tips to Prepare for an Open House
Here are 10 tips to make your next open house the one that gets offers:

1. Clear clutter. Buyers get turned off when you have too many appliances on the kitchen counters, piles of magazines on every flat surface of the living room or too much furniture. The clutter makes it hard for visitors to picture their stuff in your space. How to remedy this situation? Start packing! You want to move anyway, so now’s a good time to pack up anything that you don’t need in the short-term and put those surplus items in storage. That includes furniture – you might want to store a few of the larger items, like a sectional couch, while your home’s on the market.

2. Hire a cleaning service. Buyers won’t notice if your home is spotlessly clean, but they will notice if it isn’t. A cleaning service tackles all those dusty places you might forget: baseboards, tops of picture frames, ceiling fans.

3. Remove family photos. Yes, your children are stunning, and your animals are so cute! But buyers need to see a neutral field where they can put down their roots instead of viewing your family tree.

4. Neutralize odors. You get used to the smells of your home. Ask your real estate professional or a friend for a nose check. Shampoo your carpets before the open house, and if you have pets, give them baths and make sure litter boxes are clean.

5. Make repairs. Buyers are looking for imperfections, so now’s the time to fix that leaky faucet or slow-running drain, and replace broken windowpanes and burned-out light bulbs. These are noticeable maintenance problems that keen-eyed buyers will spot.

6. Buy new towels. Spruce up your kitchen and bathroom for your guests with plush linens.

7. Set the table. Stage your dining room table for a nice meal to encourage buyers to imagine what it would be like to entertain in the house. Your best china and a new neutral tablecloth with matching napkins will help with the visualization.

8. Enhance curb appeal. Trim your lawn, weed your beds and prune your shrubs. These small landscaping tasks make a world of difference to your home’s first impression.

9. Organize cabinets and drawers. Storage space is a vital selling point of any property. More is more when it comes to nooks and crannies, cabinets and closets. Cluttered linen closets, kitchen cabinets and bedroom closets make it appear that your home doesn’t have enough storage. We guarantee a buyer is going to look.

10. Leave. Buyers will feel more comfortable asking questions of your agent if you’re not hovering in the background. Your Realtor can highlight the positive features of your home without bias. So, take a hike for a few hours, and take your pets with you. Some buyers might not feel comfortable around your four-legged friends or might have allergies.

This article was originally published by Stephanie Mills on realtor.com. To see the original article, click here.

Up for Auction: Eminem’s Childhood Home

When rapper Eminem, aka Marshall Mathers, was a teenager, he lived in a small home with his mother in Detroit’s Greenbrier neighborhood. Today, the house is boarded up and abandoned, and it’s up for auction on the Michigan Land Bank Fast Track Authority website, the Detroit Free Press first reported.

from Zillow

from Zillow

According to property records, Deborah Mathers bought the home in 1989 and lived there until 2003, well after Eminem’s rise to stardom. His 2000 album, “The Marshall Mathers LP,” features an image of the home on its cover, and this past weekend the rapper tweeted a cover image from the upcoming “Marshall Mathers LP 2,” which also shows a photo of the home.

Located at 19946 Dresden St, Detroit MI, 48205, the 2-bedroom, 1.5-bath house is just a few blocks from 8 Mile Road; Eminem starred in the drama “8 Mile” in 2002, winning the Academy Award for best original song.

Like many properties in Detroit, Eminem’s childhood home has been affected by the city’s declining economy and has been foreclosed on several times, including in 2004 for $32,500, and in 2007 for $24,650. The most recent foreclosure was in late 2011, when the Michigan Land Bank took over the property. Zillow currently values the home at $32,948.

As part of the effort to temper the problem of foreclosures and abandoned properties in Detroit, the state of Michigan began the Land Bank program to “promote economic growth in this state through the acquisition, assembly and disposal of public property.”

Although Eminem is still active in his hometown, currently producing a Web show, “Detroit Rubber,” about a local shoe company, the rapper won’t likely be buying his old house. He currently lives in a sprawling 20,055-square-foot home in Rochester Hills, MI.

This article was originally published by Erika Riggs on Zillow Blog. See it here.

Steven Spielberg’s “Lincoln” Loft For Sale

A penthouse apartment occupied by Steven Spielberg during the filming of “Lincoln” has come to market in Richmond, VA. The luxury unit, which enjoys views of the downtown metro area and the Virginia state Capitol, is currently listed for $1.295 million.

From Realtor.com

After scouting areas in Massachusetts, Spielberg ultimately settled on Virginia to film his 2012 historical epic, which starred Daniel Day-Lewis as Abraham Lincoln and Sally Field as Mary Todd Lincoln. Filming of “Lincoln” began in October 2011 in Richmond, where the state Capitol building served as Confederacy headquarters during the Civil War. Parts of the state Capitol and Capitol Square, including the Executive Mansion, were used to film Capitol and White House interior scenes in the movie. Scenes were also filmed in FredericksburgPetersburg and Powhatan, VA.

Known as the Scudder Residence, the high-rise loft combines a pair of units, resulting in an open, 2,600-square-foot floor plan. The two-bedroom, two-bathroom unit was clearly designed with views in mind — floor-to-ceiling glass can be found in almost every room of the apartment and offers a prime vantage point overlooking the downtown area and Richmond’s historic structures.

From Realtor.com

From Realtor.com

The interior of the penthouse features a contemporary design accented by hardwood flooring, recessed lighting and  a soft color scheme. A chef’s kitchen sports custom cabinetry and a large breakfast bar, a small office alcove and a den area with an additional wet bar and pool table. Two indoor parking spaces and a pair of storage units are also included in the sale. Residents of the luxury high-rise are treated to a gym overlooking the Kanawha Canal, and they have a private club room and 24-hour security and concierge service.

From Realtor.com

“Lincoln” was a huge success at the box office, grossing more than $182 million in North America and $275 million worldwide. In addition to its commercial success, the film received widespread acclaim and was nominated for seven Golden Globes and 12 Academy Awards, including Best Picture. Day-Lewis won an Oscar for Best Actor for his portrayal of Lincoln, and the film also won an award for Best Production Design.

Andrea Levine of One South Realty Group has the listing.

This article was originally published by Neil J. Leitereg on realtor.com. For the original source and more photos, click here.