Springtime Sometimes Can’t make up its Mind!

Mother Nature is Definitely in Menopause! My poor blueberry bushes, all 140 of them, are not sure what to do. It’s Hot and Cold, and everything in between. I’m hoping for 2 things right now; April, the Giraffe needs to have baby!  and that Spring  gets itself in gear! All of Georgia is raining today, so I thought I’d write a little about Big Canoe and the North Georgia mountains.

Big Canoe and Bent Tree are gated mountain Communities in the foothills of the North Georgia Mountains, only a short 1 hour drive to to Atlanta. The air is clean and the roads are windy and full of scenic mountain and pastoral views. There are several other communities in the area as well and farms for sale too. My point is really to state that the whole community up here is a lot more relaxed. People talk in the grocery stores and just don’t seem to be so geared up like the Atlanta suburbs. There really isn’t a competitive attitude up here, but once you move up here there is a period of adjustment. I know this personally because I am originally from New Jersey! HaHa! I think Jersey would eat me alive now! 

So if you are looking for a mountain community with amenities and plenty of social clubs, consider big Canoe and Bent Tree. There are clubs for everything up here; boccie ball, gardening, travel, hiking, horseback riding, writing, cooking, dinner 8, Bunco, the Ridge Runners, and plenty more opportunities to be involved. 

Check out my website at: http://ibamountainhomes.com and take a look. Come on up any time! I look forward to seeing you. 

Karin Elliott/Broker* IBA Mountain Homes*770-655-4303

 

 

 

April 5th, 2017

Posted In: Big Canoe Real Estate

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Springer Mountain Stables

Springer Mountain Stables

I am shamelessly promoting my favorite outdoor activity in the whole wide world; Horseback Riding! I have found that people either love horses or hate horses, and there really isn’t room for the indecisive. I’m writing to convince at least on reader to give horseback riding a try.

If you have never ridden a horse, but want to try, I highly recommend that you go over to Gold Creek Stables in Dalonaga, Ga. Its about a 20 minute ride from North Gate and about 5 miles past Amicalola Falls off Wesley Chapel Road. They have calm horses that know all the trails and and have carried many different riders. They also have carriage rides.
I grew up riding hunter jump horses from the age of 6, but I never found a horse under the Christmas tree. After 30 something years I decided to bite the bullet and get a horse. I bought a beautiful but young Tennessee Walking Horse that I named Sundance.

In order to acclimate I had to relate to life outside of the ring. As a kid who knew how to move out on a horse I found riding trails to be very boring because all you could do was walk. However, I met up with a friend at the barn who showed me all the trails around Cochran Mountain and nearby trails that we could ride over to from our barn; Springer Mountain Stables. We climb and descend steep hills, run through meadows, creeks, and I have even taken clients out on horseback to see homes! It is Heaven on Horseback.

The Barn is about 95% middle-aged women and a few husbands. My husband wouldn’t know how to get there even if I croaked over because he has only been there once. BUT the BEST part about this barn is that you can keep a horse on 150 acres of unbelievable views for $100/month. Big Canoe is not far and I have a friend from Big Canoe that brought her horse there after she heard me talking about it.

Horses are a great stress reliever and they are not that expensive, especially if you pasture board, which keeps a horse happy rather than cooped up in a stall. There are online groups on Facebook that sell used tack and you don’t have to blow all your money at Dover Saddlery.
If you are considering a horse OR a HOUSE, feel free to contact me:
Karin Elliott
770-655-4303

March 23rd, 2017

Posted In: Big Canoe Real Estate

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I’m lucky! Very Lucky! A few years back I stumbled across some clients with big ideas and ready to buy real estate in Big Canoe. They bought a little foreclosure from me and made a whole lot happen in a short period. We became a team and are now on our 3rd house. We have the Interior Designers, the Landscaping Designer, the General Contractor, The Broker (That’s me), and the Check Writer. We are all fairly good looking but not quite prime time otherwise we could have our own show.

Listing homes now is an art. You cant just pop a house with Waverly Ivy wallpaper on the market now and scream at your agent because it’s not selling. Buyers don’t want to do the work. They want to move in and not bother with updating. Nobody has time for that anymore when we are waiting for Giraffes to be born. (Local Atlantans will understand).

The KEY items to replace in your house if you really want to make it sell faster are as follows: Carpet is out, rugs over wood floors are in. Plastic Jacuzzi tubs are OUT, freestanding tubs are IN! Blinds are OUT, Drapes are IN, Bold Patterns are out. Monochrome is IN.
Family Photos are now all on your computers. Keep them there. Replace family photos with soothing natural pictures with a theme throughout the whole house. YES, your teen can have whatever they want in their rooms as long as the door is closed and it is fairly clean.

Can you make a dated house look new? YES, is the answer! you will need to do it right. Bigger windows, inviting entries, a consistent theme throughout the house aside from the teen rooms, haha. Kitchens are the heart of the home where everyone wants to be all the time. They are the central hub of the home. Make them spacious and provide seating for as many people as you can. Then Eat, Drink, and be Merry!

So in conclusion, don’t cut corners. Do it right or don’t do it at all. As one of my favorite clients always says, “Once and Done”, that’s the way to do it!

Sincerely,
The Armchair Decorating Drill Sargent!

March 23rd, 2017

Posted In: Big Canoe Real Estate

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Springer Mountain Stables in Dahlonega

Springer Mountain Stables in Dahlonega

This week I am celebrating my 14th anniversary of living in the North Georgia Mountains! We left Duluth, Georgia and headed for the hills in a modern day wagon, the Ford Expedition. It was piled about as high as the Clampet wagon including 2 adults, 2 kids, 2 dogs, and 1 cat. Although the ride up there was less than pleasant, it was the BIG change that we all needed. Big Canoe was our new destination and we were ready for anything.  If you’re considering buying in the North Georgia area or in Big Canoe, please allow me a shameless plug of a great listing in Big Canoe.

Big Canoe was, and still is,  enchanting! Pulling through the gates into this emerald forest was instantly decompressing. We moved in and met a lot of friends with kids too. I worried how it would be living here with young children, but it was fantastic! There were so many activities for kids, grand kids, and even the young at heart. The amenities made us feel like we were in camp all year long! We loved the new house too. It was so close to the gate and easy to get in and out of Big Canoe’s North Gate. However, it was time to quit playing so much and get the business running.

Big Canoe is where I started my real estate company, Independent Broker Associates, Inc. I didn’t know a whole lot about real estate, but I had a passing grade and  lot of patience; coming from a 10 year background in Elementary Education. This was just before the website advertising wave. My husband set me up and we started advertising all over the place. It was wild fun and I couldn’t believe how easy  it was. It took a while for the other agents to allow me to join their gaggles, but I persevered, understanding that they were here first and many of them were already retired. Some actually reached out to me and gave me sage advice. Without them I would have had a tough time figuring everything out. For example, the roads. God Bless the person who came up with all those road names but, like a new pair of glasses, suddenly it became clear. I made up songs to sing when I didn’t want to get lost. THIS WAS BEFORE GPS! It’s TRUE! One day I may hold my own concert in Big Canoe where all wayward guests can learn my driving songs! HaHa!

So in honor of this week I will sing my road songs, breathe in clean air, do a happy dance of survival in the mountains and take a good long ride on my horse, Sundance, through these amazing Foothills and confirm that I made the right decision to live happily ever after. Whether you are looking to be in Big Canoe, Dawsonville, Dahlonega, on a farm, or in a subdivision, I can honestly say that life is better in the mountains. Come on down or up, I’ll leave the lights on for you!

Sincerely,

Karin Elliott

 

 

March 20th, 2017

Posted In: Big Canoe Real Estate

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