Sweet Home Sioux Falls

Providing knowledge about real estate and all things Sioux Falls.

Month: April 2016

Jeff Nelson – Realtor, Teacher, Mentor

If you want to excel in any area of life, find someone that has already done so, and learn from them. Study their techniques, ask questions, take notes, and soak it all in.  A mentor is someone whose hindsight can become your foresight, so take advantage of those around you and learn from their experience.

I was fortunate to join a team at Keller Williams with numerous mentors and endless knowledge about the industry. This blog is about team leader and reigning Realtor of the Year, Jeff Nelson of the Nelson Group. Jeff has been in the industry almost 40 years and credits giving back to the industry for his nomination and title of Realtor of the Year 2015.  Along with being active in many committees, Jeff also co-teaches with brother and fellow realtor, Doug Nelson, at the South Dakota School of Real Estate for those looking to get their license.

With mentors like the Nelsons, I am sure to excel at a faster rate than if I tried to embark on this journey alone. I am anxious to learn more, but understand in this career, you never stop learning. And that is the beauty of it!


How did you get started in real estate?

I was teaching and coaching at Lincoln High School and needed something to do during the summer so I got a real estate license. I sold part time for about 8 months and then switched to full time.



[Jeff Nelson (far right) accepting his award last spring]


How has real estate in Sioux Falls changed over the years?

Sioux falls has grown from 77,000 in 1977 to 175,000 in 2016. Some things have changed, but it is still a day to day people business. Information is much more available and the real estate broker that is not reading and studying on a daily basis, soon falls behind.


What do you love most about the Sioux Falls community?

People come and go but I have never heard a person say they were not impressed by Sioux Falls. We are fortunate that so many return home to Sioux Falls. Whether they are young people coming home after college, work experienced, or older people moving back to enjoy their retirement.


How do you feel about the recent growth of Sioux Falls?

We need continued growth to sustain a city. Everyone benefits where services, entertainment and education are expanding within a community.


What do you want people to know about working with a real estate agent?

Real estate brokers are trained to solve problems. Problems that the consumer can’t recognize as possible damages in the transaction. Well too often a real estate broker will find they are called in to help someone resolve an issue that could have been alleviated when they purchased the home. It is important that a real estate broker be backed up by a strong company and team. Knowledge at every level, experience, knowledge and excitement are the most important qualities in an agent.



[Holding my new signs outside the Keller Williams office, home to the Nelson Group]


Any advice for those thinking about buying or selling in 2016?

2016 looks to be one of the most vibrant years in the last decade for real estate in Sioux Falls. Low rates and continued population growth will drive the market. Only the lack of existing inventory could dampen the market under the $300,000 mark. Even this will not slow the move to Sioux Falls as we see a growth of town houses, apartments and other rental buildings.

Real estate has always been the consistent source of wealth building in the United States and the Sioux Falls market has proven that for its entire history.


For more real estate advice, contact me at 605.261.8396 or at sadiehalberstadt@kw.com. I have a whole team of mentors behind me, so your questions or concerns are sure to be answered and then some.

Our team cook out is May 20th at noon. Click here to RSVP! We would love to see you there for free food and fun!

Owning Property Leads to Happy Retirement

Matt Luke, owner of Luke Properties in Sioux Falls, a real estate investing company, has a passion for owning property and providing Sioux Falls residents with an affordable place to live. With his team, you can build a solid financial foundation by investing in residential or commercial property, or find a home to rent for you and your family. He has an abundance of information about owning property and encourages everyone to invest in their future by buying for the first time or adding to their real estate portfolio with additional properties. Here are a few questions answered about owning property:


What prompted you to purchase your first property?
When [my wife and I] were 23 years old we had a family friend give us money for our wedding. It was specifically to be used for investing and for the purchase of financial development books. We did just that with the money. The one book that changed our lives was Rich Dad Poor Dad. It is a must read for anyone getting in to real estate.



[Matt Luke outside one of his Sioux Falls properties]


What would you tell someone who rents and is on the fence about purchasing property?
Purchasing a home is not an investment. Investments produce cash flow and your house costs you money…its a liability. But with that being said, it is better to pay yourself and build equity than to pay someone else. Also, don’t over extend on your home. If you are not out of debt and you can’t invest at least 10% of your income, then don’t buy a house. Once you are out of debt, then it’s time to look at homes. Purchase a home in the price range where you can pay it off in no more than 15 years while still investing at least 10% of your income.


What positive effects have you seen from owning property?
There is just one positive effect to owning property. Building equity so that when it comes time to retire, you do not have a payment. But don’t confuse that with an investment. You only make money when you sell your house. The point of owning property is to quickly pay it off so you don’t have a payment to worry about.


What do you wish more people knew about owning property?
I wish more people understood how good banks are with marketing. They have brainwashed people in to believing that a home is an investment, it is more important than your retirement and that a 30 year mortgage is a good option. Get out of debt. Stay out of debt. Invest 10%. Buy a house you can pay off in 15 years or less. You will thank yourself when you are ready to retire.



[Two bedroom home available for rent from Luke Properties]


What is your favorite part about owning property?
Our favorite part of owning property are the properties we own that we don’t live in. Those are true investments (unlike your house) that produce cash flow while the mortgage is being paid down by someone else.



If you are looking for your first home or an investment property, contact me at 605.261.8396 or sadiehalberstadt@kw.com. I will work with you and my preferred vendors to help make the right decision for you and your finances.


For the Green Gardener or Homeowner

A few years ago, I had the pleasure of working for one of the largest and most successful local retail stores in Sioux Falls, Lewis Drug. While I build my real estate career, Lewis has welcomed me back with open arms as a part-time garden shop employee this summer. I am excited to learn more about lawn care, flowers and gardening that I can then pass on to my homeowners.

Lewis has become a top competitor for garden and outdoor supplies thanks to Buyer and Category Manager Doug Schroeder and the rest of the team. I asked Doug a few questions about lawn care that will help if you are a new to homeownership and lawn care, or if you would consider yourself ‘green’ in the outdoor area.


For someone that is new to homeownership and lawn care, what are one or two things they should be SURE to do? 

If it is a new home, the first thing you need to do is seed or sod the lawn.  The second would be to plant trees.  Trees take years to establish so you would want to start there.  If it is an older home, the first thing I would do is examine the lawn, trees and existing landscape.  I would focus on a healthy, weed free lawn first.  That means feeding it a recommended four times a year.


What do you see as the most common mistake in lawn care or gardening?

The biggest mistake I see in lawn care is the misconception that your lawn does not need fertilizer in the spring because it is a vibrant green.  Lawns will start out the season green because of all the moisture from the winter. That does not mean the roots are healthy.  You need to fertilize to increase the health of the lawn.  The biggest mistake I see in gardening is starting too large.  Garden size should reflect the time you have and the time you want to spend gardening. Start small.


What are a couple low maintenance flowers?  

Low maintenance really depends on the person.  Some easy blooming annuals to grow are Million Bells, Moss Rose, Pentas, Lantana, Wave Petunias and Geraniums.  All these take very little care.


[Moss Rose]

When and how much should you water a lawn? 

I recommend 1 – 1.5 inches of water a week, broken into three waterings.  No need to water if you are getting rains.


What products are you excited to see in the Lewis Garden Shop this year?  

I am excited about everything that is coming in.  If I had to pick out a couple products it would be the selection of pottery planters and a rustic garden decor line called Elegant Garden Design.  Lots of new things though.

 lewis-drug-planters            lewis-drug-pottery
[Planters at 41st & Minnesota]


As you can see, there are many beautiful and unique pieces that would love to call your yard home. Stop by and talk to me at the 41st and Minnesota location if you have any questions about lawn care or gardening, I would love to see you!


In two weeks, look for another post from Doug Schroeder with behind the scenes information about the Lewis Garden Center!