2 TLC's My First Home in Little Rock

>> Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Watch out people. Big star coming through. Mr. Wilkerson would prefer no pictures please. Only kidding, but Eric and one of his buyers, Justin Parkey, were featured on TLC's hit show My First Home this spring.

Last October, after being selected to appear in the show, the TLC crew rolled into Little Rock to begin a week of filming. In the episode, Justin, a recent Pepperdine law school graduate, is planning his move back to Arkansas from California. In need of a home in the Hillcrest/Stifft's Station area, Eric and Justin set out to find his first place. The 30 minute TV show chronicles the ups and downs of Justin's journey to make his dream of becoming a homeowner a reality.

During taping, Eric was able to capture a few "behind the scenes" photos...

In case you missed Eric and Justin's TV debut, we've included the full episode below for your viewing pleasure. See if you can spot Little Rock eateries Boulevard Bread & Satellite Cafe...


Doesn't this fine city of ours look amazing on TV? Not only was Justin able to snag a great home in Stifft's Station before it even came on the market, but since the show he has completely remodeled the interior. Perhaps we should do a bit of blog snooping around his fabulous place in the near future...



0 Office Space

>> Monday, June 29, 2009

It's Monday morning and we all know what that means: back to the daily grind. Let these inspiring home offices put a little pep in your step as you head off to work...

Have a great week!



0 Buyer's Guide: Closing on Your Dream Home

>> Sunday, June 28, 2009

You've made it! With the help of your Realtor, you've found the perfect house, are satisfied with the inspection and repairs, sailed through the appraisal and are in the home stretch of making it officially yours.

Closing is a brief process where all of the necessary paperwork needed to complete the transaction is signed and the title to the property is filed in your name. Most importantly, after closing is when you receive the keys to your new home!

Finally your journey down to road to home ownership, whether it's your first house or fifth, is complete. Now you can focus on the more important things...like who to invite to your house warming party.


To see the complete Buyer's Guide click here.


0 Open House Sunday!

>> Saturday, June 27, 2009

Sunday, June 28: 2-4 p.m.

We look forward to seeing you at our open houses this week!

6204 Brentwood

This wonderful 3 bedroom/2 bath home in Cammack Village offers 1865 square feet, beautiful landscaping, new central heat and air, a new roof, hardwoods under carpet in living area, a huge kitchen with breakfast bar, a formal living room, separate dining room, and a den! There is also a great workspace inside the home that would make for an excellent play room or craft room. Kids can walk to Jefferson Elementary, Baker Park and tennis courts. Don't miss the large patio and the custom built playhouse in the backyard!

2002 Kavanaugh

This charming 2 bedroom/1 bath condo in the heart of Hillcrest is a low maintenance, first floor unit with nice hardwoods, central heat and air, an updated kitchen, and a decorative fireplace. Don't miss the great deck which serves as a common area for all four units in the building. Walk to Allsopp Park and all Hillcrest shopping and restaurants!

1315 Kavanaugh

This charming 1 bedroom/1 bath Hillcrest condo in the Fairfax Terrace building will be open this Sunday as well. Stop by to see the large living area, vintage bathroom tile, fantastic built-ins and much more!

As always, give us a shout to check out these homes or any others at a more convenient time.



1 Bedroom Boost

>> Friday, June 26, 2009

Here we go. The rehabilitation station crew will have to kick it into high gear with this project--pardon me, projects.

Our bedroom isn't a terribly pitiful sight, but it isn't anything remarkable either. We love the additional storage offered by the platform hand-me-down bed from my parents, but the light finish has seen better days and, frankly, isn't quite our style.

The lack of a headboard leaves the space feeling a bit cold, and no bedside tables equal a room void of cozy lamp light.

So, Eric and I put together to-do list to help spruce up this space:
  1. Paint/stain the platform bed.
  2. Create an upholstered headboard to soften the sharp lines of the platform bed.
  3. Give new life to a couple of end tables that have been sitting in our garage, begging to be cleaned up. Our garage is project central, so please pardon the mess...

While we are praying the tasks at hand won't be too difficult--knock on wood--they will require us to succumb to sleeping on a mattress on the floor for a few days since our second bedroom serves as an office rather than a guestroom.

Wish us luck! I am thinking we will need it...



2 Just Listed: A Lovely Hillcrest Home

>> Thursday, June 25, 2009

This fantastic 3 bedroom/2 bath home in Hillcrest has beautiful hardwood floors, stainless steel appliances, nicely updated kitchen and bathrooms, a formal dining room, a breakfast nook and a separate laundry room. The living room is spacious with a working gas fireplace. There are 3 parking pads in the back, an alarm system and nice privacy fence in the backyard.

Price: $199,500

Contact us today to see this charming house for yourself. Don't miss this fantastic opportunity!

Eric & Cara


2 Neck of the Woods: Cammack Village

>> Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Just west of the Heights, Cammack Village is a city in itself with beautiful real estate and a close knit community. Now, Cammack is completely surrounded by Little Rock, but in 1943, the community chose to incorporate since Little Rock officials at the time believed that the Cammack was "too far west."

Initially built to provide housing for officers at Camp Robinson during World War II, Cammack Village has withstood the test of time and developed into a thriving small town of neighbors helping neighbors. With a community pool, park and police department and proximity to Jefferson Elementary school, Cammack residents enjoy the small town feel while partaking in all that Little Rock has to offer.

This spacious Cammack Village home is currently for sale...

Give us a shout if you would like to see this charming Cammack Village home for yourself, or click here to search more Cammack Village homes.

-Eric & Cara


1 Buyer's Guide: The Road to Closing

>> Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Now that you've found the perfect home and have reached an agreement with the seller on the details of the purchase, you are officially on your way to making the home yours. Typically, there are 4 pit stops along the road to the closing table:

  1. Order an inspection. Buyers should always make their offers contingent on a home inspection, which should be scheduled as soon as the offer is accepted. If problems turn up, buyers can ask sellers to make repairs or back out of the contract at no cost to the buyer.

    During an inspection, an inspector comes to the property to determine if there are material physical defects and whether expensive repairs and replacements are likely to be required in the next few years. Such inspections for a single-family home often require two or three hours, and buyers should attend. This is an opportunity to examine the property's mechanics and structure, ask questions and learn far more about the property than is possible with an informal walk-through.

  2. Negotiate repairs. After the inspection, it's up to buyers to decide what repairs, if any, they should ask the sellers to handle. Superficial flaws may not be worth mentioning, but significant problems, such as with the roof, heat, electric or plumbing may warrant a second look.

    Whether sellers will agree to those repairs is another matter. Sellers may refuse, agree to split the cost, or offer to take care of everything.

  3. Appraisal. An all-important step in getting the financing you need is the home appraisal. A real estate appraisal is the expert opinion of a certified, state-licensed professional who determines the value of a piece of property. The worth, or value of the property, will determine how much a lender is willing to give you to buy that particular piece of real estate.

  4. Final walk-through. Inspection: check. Appraisal: check.

    Now it is time for you to take one last "walk through" the house before it officially becomes your new home. During this visit, you and your Realtor will make sure all of the requested repairs have been completed and the condition of the home meets the requirements agreed upon in the contract.

Check back soon for the final installment of the Buyer's Guide.



4 Courtyard Cleanup

>> Monday, June 22, 2009

We have a small courtyard that connects our house to the garage, and we have to admit that this space has been on the bottom of our priority list--well, my priority list. Eric has been wanting to tackle this area for quite some time now. He couldn't even wait for me to finish the before pictures to start sweeping.

We didn't want to spend a fortune, but we did want to have an outdoor space that we could enjoy for the rest of the summer.

First up, the flower beds. Lining the beds and adding fresh mulch made a world of difference, but we also wanted a mini herb garden. With a small dog that loves basil as much as we do, we decided to plant our herbs in tall planters that would make it more difficult for a sniffing snout to run off with a stash of cilantro...

With the flower beds shaping up, we were in need of somewhere to relax. So, off to Garden Ridge we went. We were able to snag a couple of wicker chairs and a glass top table for around $80. We love a good deal, and a good deal we found! To finish off the seating area, we added a couple of decorative pillows and accessories...

Much better. We must have been crazy not to have utilized this wonderfully shady outdoor nook.


2 Dads, Do Rags & Decks, Oh My!

>> Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy Father's Day to all the dads out there! While we may be a bit biased, Eric and I definitely agree that we possibly have the most wonderful/handy/do-it-yourselfer dads ever:

Growing up in the Letzig house sometimes felt a bit like a living in a construction zone. Whether installing hardwood floors or completely remodeling the kitchen, you never knew what kind of project you would come across.

One of my favorite projects had to be when my Dad built his workshop in our backyard. Not only did us kiddos have a great time sporting bandannas while pretending to help, but the foundation made an excellent stage for us to sing and dance amongst the sound of circular saws and nail guns.

Thanks, Dad, for exposing us to the joys of home improvement. Maybe that is why I'm no sissy when it comes to sanding, tiling and painting. Happy Father's Day!


My dad has always been quite the handyman. Out of the many projects that my brother and I helped him with, the ones that stick out to me are when we built a privacy fence, built a deck, and even jacked up the house and replaced some of the piers and beams!

Needless to say, I did not enjoy working on the foundation, but I enjoyed building the deck and privacy fence. Helping my dad build the deck was fun and inspiring. I remember feeling so proud of myself...because I got to work with my dad!

I am not much of a handyman (yet), but I know that I will use all that I learned from my dad when we built that deck together. I remember sitting on the completed deck and feeling so good about what we had accomplished. That is one memory with my dad that I will never forget.

I was really hoping that I would get paid for helping out, maybe five bucks or so--a lot to a nine year old. While we were finishing our cokes, my dad handed me a twenty dollar bill. I thought I was rich! Wow, twenty whole dollars!

So, it was a good experience and worth my while, because I got to spend time with my dad--and got paid the big bucks! Maybe my dad can help me build my next deck...but I probably won't pay him!


Happy Father's Day!

-Eric & Cara


0 Buyer's Guide: Making an Offer

>> Saturday, June 20, 2009

So you've found the home you can't live without. Now it is time to make it yours!

No aspect of the home buying process is more complex, personal or variable than bargaining between buyers and sellers. This is the point where the value of an experienced Realtor is clearly evident because they know the community, have seen numerous homes for sale, know local property values and have experience negotiating real estate transactions.

How much? You sometimes hear that the amount of your offer should be "x percent" below the seller's asking price or "y percent" less than you're really willing to pay. In practice, the offer depends on the basic laws of supply and demand: If many buyers are competing for homes, then sellers will likely get full-price offers and sometimes even more. If demand is weak, then offers below the asking price may be in order.

What else is involved? While much attention is spent on price, an offer to buy a home includes both the price and additional terms, including closing costs and financing options. For example, you may choose to ask the seller to assist with closing costs or a home warranty.

What's next? Your Realtor will then present your offer to the owner and the owner's representative. The owner, in turn, may accept the offer, reject it or make a counter offer.

Because counter offers are common--any change in an offer can be considered a "counter offer"--, it's important for you to remain in close contact with your Realtor during the negotiation process so that any proposed changes can be quickly reviewed.

Once you and the seller have reached an agreement, you are officially on the road to closing on your new home.

Check in soon for Part 5: The Road to Closing!



4 Weeknight Mini-Rehab

>> Friday, June 19, 2009

Nothing to do on a Wednesday night. With a pilates class cut short and Eric out showing property, I found myself home early twiddling my thumbs--something I don't do well. So, I decided to tackle one of the many rehab projects waiting in our garage.

On the same trip that brought our new
TV console table into our lives, we found an old window that we were able to snag for just $5 at the Habitat for Humanity ReStore.

In an effort to cure my idleness, I grabbed my sander, a squirt bottle of Mrs. Meyer's cleaner and a bit of enthusiasm and got to work!

Here is the window in its original condition: filthy and splintery...

...but after removing the sharp metal pieces, sanding down the chipped paint, and giving it a good scrub, it fit right in above the mantel in our dining room. Not a bad space filler for five bucks!

Budget Breakdown:

Window. . . . . . . . . . $5
Total . . . . . . . . . . . $5

What do you do around the house to cure the boredom blues?



0 Open House Sunday

Sunday, June 21: 2-4 p.m.

816 North Street #22

Eric will be at this lovely 2 bedroom/1 bath first floor unit at the Cliff's is one home that you won't want to miss. Just a short walk to the River Market, this home offers a great location and river view!

1315 Kavanaugh

I am holding open this charming 1 bedroom/1 bath Hillcrest condo in the Fairfax Terrace building. Stop by to see the large living area, vintage bathroom tile, fantastic built-ins and much more!

We'll see you there! Can't make it? Email us to set up a more convenient time to view these condos.



2 Let's Make a Deal: Beds

>> Thursday, June 18, 2009

This week, let's check out a variety of styles of beds at different price points, shall we?

This seagrass headboard from Pottery Barn will cost you $399 for a queen...

...but this headboard from JC Penney for $299 brings the same natural texture to your space for less.

Platform beds, such as this queen bed from
Haiku Designs for $1099, create a contemporary and elegant feel in any bedroom...

...and this streamlined Z Gallerie platform bed hits the nail on the head for just $699.

Polished-nickel nail-head trim traces the camelback silhouette of this king sized
Williams Sonoma Home upholstered bed, and it could be yours for $2950...

...or you could snag this remarkably similar bed from Restoration Hardware for $2085.

For the kiddos, this Ethan Allen trundle bed for $1199 offers extra space for sleepovers...

...and so does this bed in a similar style from Pottery Barn Kids for just $868 with the trundle.


0 Buyer's Guide: The House Hunt

>> Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Now that you have your dream team in place and have a better idea of what you are looking for in your next home, it is time to go out and find it!

Choose your favorites. With your priority list in mind, your Realtor can begin sorting through the homes currently on the market and suggesting properties for you to consider. In addition, you can search through listings online. This will allow you to explore the real estate market a bit on your own before selecting which homes you would like to see with your Realtor.

Your Realtor may also know of houses that are not yet for sale but may be in the near future. Your Realtor's connections with other real estate professionals and knowledge of the market are valuable tools in finding your ideal home.

Hit the pavement. Enough with the photos and online descriptions. Now is it time for you and your Realtor to take to the streets and view homes in person.

Dress comfortably. Be sure to wear comfortable clothing and sturdy shoes. House-hunting can be tiring, especially if you're relocating to a distant community and want to see a dozen homes in one day. There's no sense in torturing your feet unnecessarily.

Take notes. Your Realtor should provide you with profile sheets detailing each property that you are viewing. Remember to jot down a few notes--after a long day of house hunting, the details may begin to run together!

Relax. Granted, buying a home is a major life-altering event, but it's not worth making yourself insanely stressed. While some buyers know their house the second they step inside, others may prefer to take a moment to compare notes on the different properties, especially if another person is involved in the final decision. Regardless, take time at the end of your house hunting expedition to unwind, calm your thoughts and emotions and keep the whole experience in perspective.

Check back soon for Part 4: Making an Offer!


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