New Orleans is famously identified with the Mississippi River, but that's not the only notable body of water found around the Big Easy. Our real estate agents love making convenient getaways to enjoy these incredible lakes near NOLA.
Summer is a season of celebration in Jefferson Parish, and our real estate agents want you to know all about it!
New Orleans homes for sale are some of the most desirable in Louisiana, and New Orleans open houses fill up many calendar dates. But no matter if you're interested in The Big Easy or one of its beautiful sister cities, Jefferson Parish always has plenty for you to see and do. The summer calendar is especially lively!
Let's look at some of the unforgettable events that are coming to the area this summer:
There's a lot to look forward to during the summer months, especially in the Jefferson Parish area! Contact us to discover more about Jefferson Parish today.
Some of the best farmers markets in the Greater New Orleans area are located in Jefferson Parish, a vast area that spans the banks of Lake Pontchartrain to the remote Gulf Coast Islands.
Unsurprisingly, Jefferson Parish is a great place to find locally grown produce and freshly caught seafood. With spring in the air, our real estate agents are excited to highlight some of our favorite markets in Jefferson Parish.
Contact us today to learn more about life in the Greater New Orleans area. Our real estate agents are dedicated to helping you find your dream home in Louisiana.
There are plenty of places near New Orleans homes for sale serving up delicious, fresh oysters. There's even a trail dedicated to this delicacy! When our real estate agents are in the mood for some great seafood, they follow the Louisiana Oyster Trail to these top restaurants in Jefferson Parish.
Everyone loves a parade, and Mardi Gras wouldn't be the same without the colorful and festive krewes celebrating every year. Our real estate agents share a preview of some of the highly-anticipated parades scheduled throughout the area.
These are only some of the parades to look forward to this Mardi Gras season. We'll be covering more parades to plan ahead for in our next blog post.
Tea is one of the most diverse and storied beverages in human history. Although it is closely associated with the United Kingdom, the finest teas in the world have generally come from China and India.
You can enjoy a delightful cup of tea right in your own Louisiana neighborhood. Around New Orleans and throughout the state, there are dozens of excellent tea shops, coffee shops, and boutiques that can cater to any taste. You'll find some of them only minutes from New Orleans homes for sale.
Let's take a look at some of your options for a National Hot Tea Month treat:
Looking for a new home where you can be near your favorite cafes and shops? Contact us to discover more about New Orleans real estate today.
There's no one way to make gumbo. Cooked with a dark roux, thickened with okra or filé, packed with sausage or shrimp, flavored with the Creole "holy trinity" of celery, bell pepper, and onion, there are endless possibilities.
Despite its many variations—or perhaps because of them—gumbo is a dish that our real estate agents will never grow tired of. It's the official state dish of Louisiana, and if you want to savor some of the finest gumbo our state has to offer, we recommend these amazing stops.
Contact us today to learn more about living life to the fullest in New Orleans and the surrounding areas. Great food and unique culture are just part of what makes Louisiana a truly unique and special place to call home.
A home with a patio provides opportunities for relaxation and various outdoor activities with family and friends. Whether you enjoy relaxing in the sun, tending to your garden, or grilling with the kids, a patio creates the perfect place to enjoy the outdoors.
If you're looking for New Orleans homes for sale, you know that the climate changes with the seasons. Our real estate agents can help you find a home with an existing patio or a sizable backyard where you can build your own. With hot summers, cool, windy winters, and year-round rainfall in New Orleans, choosing materials that provide long-term durability and easy maintenance is essential.
In a changing climate, it's hard to find a patio material more versatile than concrete. Made from a mixture of cement, gravel, sand, and water, a concrete patio with proper maintenance can last 20-30 years. For minimal costs, you can build a concrete patio in a variety of shapes and finishes that complement the style of your home.
Poured or Stamped – A poured concrete patio is quick and easy to install as long as you have a flat surface. For $6 to $13 per square foot, you can create a patio in square, rectangular, oval, or curved shapes to complement the style of your home. Concrete can be colored as well as textured by using stamps that create a variety of patterns.
Pavers – Concrete pavers are manufactured stones that come in a variety of sizes, shapes, and colors. Unlike poured slabs, pavers are placed individually. They offer better drainage and less damage from cracks. Although pavers cost $13 to $20 per square foot, they can last 50-100 years with minimal maintenance.
Made from clay fired at high temperatures, bricks provide durability and classic appeal for formal and rustic homes and landscapes. Brick patios cost $14 to $20 per square foot, but salvaged bricks can be purchased as a cheaper, eco-friendly option. If full-sized bricks create structural concerns, thinner, lighter brick pavers can be laid in a variety of patterns. Brick patios can last up to 100 years with proper maintenance. Bricks are strong but porous, so cleaning with bleach and a scrub brush 3-4 times a year is recommended to prevent mildew and moss growth during rainy weather.
Flagstone is a beautiful material that's available in various stones and colors. Large, flat slabs of stone quarried from the ground are usually 1-3 inches thick. Irregular shapes and distinct colors enhance visual interest, and rough surfaces provide good traction when wet. Popular flagstones include Bluestone, Limestone, Sandstone, and Quartzite. When building a patio, flagstones should be at least 1 ½ inches thick and laid directly on soil or sand. Thinner slabs should be laid in concrete or wet mortar to prevent cracking. A flagstone patio will cost $14 to $28 per square foot, but it can last 100 years or more with proper care.
Once considered a choice only for small side yards, loose materials are now popular options for patios, especially in drought-prone areas. Many homeowners are replacing thirsty lawns with more water-wise alternatives that are inexpensive and easy to use. Options include:
Bark and rubber mulch
At an average cost of $6 to $10 per square foot, loose materials can last many years and easily be replaced, but borders or edging may be needed to keep materials in place.
Still looking for a home perfect for relaxing on the patio? If you're interested in New Orleans properties, contact us for a tour of available homes in desirable communities that fit your lifestyle and financial needs.
There are Baton Rouge homes for sale that can meet all of your needs. However, that doesn't mean you can't still do a bit of work to make your new house your own. If you're a home chef, for instance, you might like to make a few changes to making cooking easier. From minor additions to major renovations, here are a few kitchen updates to consider.
These are just a few of the ways you can update the kitchen in your new home. Whether you want to add a few finishing touches or a complete remodel, our real estate agents can help you find the best way to make your new kitchen your own. Contact us and let us help you find the perfect house for you.
Call it bubble tea, milk tea, or boba. Whatever name you use, this cool beverage is amazing in the summer months. Plus, there are many lovely bubble tea shops in the NOLA area. Here are a few particular ones that our real estate agents recommend.
Bubble tea is such a wonderful beverage to enjoy in the summer, especially in a warm climate like New Orleans. It might even make you fall in love with this city even more. If that happens, contact us, and we'll put you in touch with a local real estate agent.
If you're thinking about buying one of the beautiful Baton Rouge homes for sale, a VA loan is a great option! These loans come with excellent benefits. They offer flexible credit underwriting and low-interest rates. In addition, buyers using a VA loan won't have to come up with a down payment or carry mortgage insurance (PMI).
A portion of these loans is guaranteed by the U.S. Department of Veteran's Affairs (VA). However, the loans are issued by mortgage lenders and banks. Our real estate agents regularly meet with lenders to learn more about any updates to loan programs and how they could impact their clients.
There have been some changes to VA loans that go into effect in 2021. Here's what you need to know.
Benefits for National Guard Members
The biggest change affects National Guard members. Previously, VA loans were not available to members who did not have at least 90 days of active service.
Beginning in 2021, all Guard and Reserve members who have at least 90 days of service are eligible for a VA home loan, even if the service wasn't active. However, there is one caveat. At least 30 of the days of the service must be consecutive.
Increased Loan Limits
As of 2020, service members with "full entitlement" are not subject to a VA loan limit. You'll have full entitlement if you've never used a VA loan benefit, have paid off a VA loan and then sold the property, or had a foreclosure or short sale and repaid the VA in full.
However, if you have "remaining entitlement," you are subject to a limit. This can occur for several different reasons. The most common is that you have an active VA loan, they're still paying back.
The Federal Housing Finance Agency announced that the upper limit for their loans was increasing in 2021. VA loans follow these guidelines, so all VA loans closing after January 1st, 2021 also have increased loan limits. The new limit for a single-family home located in the lower 48 states is $548,250. This is an increase of 7.4% compared to 2020.
In Alaska or Hawaii, the upper limit is now $822,375. If you're buying a home in a high-cost county, you might also have some extra wiggle room. These areas will have their own limits, which are set on a local basis. This limit may be anywhere from $548,250 and $822,375.
Explore Baton Rouge Homes Today!
Whether you're planning on using a VA loan or another type of financing, now is a great time to buy a new home. There are many beautiful options on the market, and we would love to help you find the perfect one. Contact us today to get started!
Whether you've just purchased one of the beautiful Baton Rouge homes for sale or you've lived in your current home for years, decorating with houseplants can go a long way towards making your space feel homey. Even if you don't have a green thumb, you can still keep beautiful plants in your home!
The key is selecting plants that are hardy and easy to care for. Here are a few of the best starter plants.
In our warm region, we're lucky to grow certain types of herbs all year long in a protected place outdoors. However, there is always the risk of a cold snap, when temperatures plunge below freezing. That's why learning the ins and outs of indoor herb gardening is well worth your time -- not to mention, having herbs growing indoors provides an attractive accent to your home when it's listed among Baton Rouge homes for sale.
Further, growing plants indoors can help clean the air, which is oh-so-important when your home is shut up tight during the cold season. It's also lovely to have culinary herbs within snipping distance for cooking.
Here's what you'll need to get started.
What You'll Need
The greatest challenge for growing indoor plants is giving them the 6-8 hours of sunlight they need. If you have a big window, that may be enough light for a healthy garden. Otherwise, you may need to supplement it with a grow light.
You'll obviously need containers, so think about how many herbs you want to grow and what your indoor garden will look like. Kits are available that make it easy to grow three or so seeds or seedlings. If space is limited, you might acquire a multi-tiered plant stand that will hold pots.
Pots can be plastic or clay, but some pros lean toward today's higher quality plastics. They last longer, without worries about chipping and breaking, and they hold in water quite well, so there's less worry about drying out. Always look for recyclable plastic. Further, plastic is lighter and easier to move around. Containers should have a hole in the bottom to allow water to drain.
If you don't opt for a kit, you will need potting soil, plants, or seeds (buying seedlings will get you going faster unless you love growing plants from seeds), fertilizer, a watering can, and some mat or drip tray to keep water off the floor.
What to Grow?
If you're an indoor gardening novice, you might want to start with herbs that are easy to grow. The following are some culinary herbs that you're probably used to using in recipes.
Mint: Grown outdoors, mint will take over, but indoors, it's likely to be a little better contained. Grow mint from seed, cuttings, or store-bought container plants. It's used in cooking, to make cocktails and other drinks, to freshen breath, and for an upset stomach.
Basil: One of the easiest herbs to grow, basil is used in Italian cooking, particularly pesto. Start it from seed with ease. It's also pleasingly aromatic.
Chives: Chives are quite easy to grow; plus, they can be frozen for later use. They're often added to soups and dips and are a well-known addition to sour cream when served with potatoes.
Parsley: Sow parsley directly from seed in the container you are going to grow it in. Grow it in the brightest light possible. Add parsley to soups and salads. It's rich in antioxidants and vitamins.
Rosemary: Rosemary will start as a fragrant herb you can snip but will turn into a woody plant. The key to growing rosemary is sandy soil in the container. And refrain from overwatering.