[Sold] Wilcox Park Drive, Eastown


1420 Wilcox Park Drive – $247,500
Experience the beauty of the Arts and Crafts lifestyle married to modern convenience and efficiency with this built-to-last fully-restored 1916 Eastown Craftsman. From this unique location you may walk your dog past St Thomas Parish, through Wilcox Park, and through Eastown neighborhood shopping, restaurants, night life and public transportation. All of these are nearly adequate reasons to leave your brand new kitchen, two new full baths, 2nd floor laundry, third floor master bed/living room, sleeping porch, within the comfort of new windows, electricity, hvac, and roof. Entertain in warmer months from your stocked garage bar with pass-through serving window to your fenced back yard as guests relax on your newly paved patio.

Photo Sessions


Photo Sessions

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Polish Hollywood Makeout

In our first meeting Erin said "Do you know Polish Hollywood?" Erin and Cedric front the band "Hollywood Makeout" in Grand Rapids, so this home seemed very fitting for them. They purchased in excellent condition, with a well-preserved decor. Design changes have made the house home.

Michael VanderBrug, Realtor


Michael VanderBrug, Realtor
(616) 341-1834

Michael has been involved in building a sustainable food system in West Michigan for the past 15 years through his work growing Trillium Haven Farm into an influential CSA farm. Trillium Haven Farm sparked a renaissance in sustainable farming, and several of the people who worked at Trillium went on to start their own farms. The work of the farm included creating a new community, developing markets and products, and being involved with several committees and boards in the Grand Rapids area.

In 2012 Michael started Trillium Haven restaurant, and in 2015 he published Gardening in the Midwest with Timber Press.  Today, Michael works in real estate and real estate development with Grand River Realty. He is excited about serving the Grand Rapids community with great customer service, and assisting people as they search for their dream home or sell their current home.

[Sold] $65,000 Midtown home in good shape, 13 Inlet Place


If you can get past a basement with a dirt floor, this home is a rare find in Midtown area: good shape, a street away from the farmers market, convenient to downtown and many neighborhood offerings. Plenty of parking also included, which is rare for the street. Two rooms upstairs, main floor laundry, bath and bedroom, fresh carpet paint and flooring throughout.


[Sold – $104,900] Just Listed: 3323 Paris NE $109,900


Grand Rapids Real Estate. This charming, nicely-renovated Dutch Colonial home sits conveniently near Riverside Park ten minutes from Downtown. Full of original oak floors, this roomy two bedroom home is big on living area with a flowing main floor layout. The newly-installed upstairs bathroom fits nicely alongside freshly refinished hardwood floors. Bay windows in the living room & formal dining room bring in lots of natural light and views to the quiet tree-lined street. View uninterrupted sunsets from the back deck. The basement is clean with plenty of headroom and a bonus room out to the back yard that could have once been a garage. Parking out front. Come visit today!


The 10 Least Expensive Homes Sold in 2015 in Kent County




In response to Mlive’s Ten Most Expensive Homes in 2015 Sold in Kent County, which was called “Disgusting Wealth Porn” among other things in the comments section, we’ve come to the table with a list of the Ten Least Expensive Homes Sold in Kent County last year. Consider this the fair and balanced sequel for the rest of us.

(1) $7,000 – 1510 Houseman Avenue NE
This 3 Bedroom 1504 square foot home features a rare layout that actually sits inside a 1 Bedroom 545 square foot home. Unsurprisingly sold in less than 1 day on the market.


Full Article Here

The “What’s My Home Worth” Troll


“What’s My Home Worth?” A marketing hook equally brilliant and meaningless. A report automatically generated with the click of a button gives you a round number based on municipal records and sometimes other general data. What it accomplishes effectively is adding your name to a list of contacts that is sent to those who offer to pay for it.

Magic Home Evaluation Button

Magic Home Evaluation Button

Why not make the most important decision in the home selling process for yourself: Which local listing agent will you choose to hire? 

“Free Market Evaluations” do exist. These are a basic, stage-one component of what your agent of choice will do for you, usually with 12-24 hours. Insight varies depending on the agent. 

Thinking of selling? Good timing! I’d like to offer you a free, personalized market report on your home. Then we can meet to discuss its implications, have a Q&A, and talk proactive strategy. 

Here are links to my most recent listings and their results:

407 College SE
Listed $249,900, Sold Full Price, Discount for Inspections issues, $248,700, 3 Offers
Facilitated cleaning and refinishing hardwood floors.

110 East Elm
List $114,900, Sold $120,000, 3 Offers

1435 Colorado
List $127,000, Sold $129,900
Facilitated cleaning, painting, and refinishing hardwood floors

130 Ann Street
List $110,000, Sold $111,650, 2 Offers

321 Diamond NE
List $147,000, Sold $155,000, 5 Offers

505 Cherry SE #203
We purchased for $109,900 in 2014
Sold for $127,000 in 2015.

Services I Offer:
Analysis, Repairs & Renovation through my company, Advice on Staging, Advice on your next step

Referrals I Offer:
Staging, Major Repairs, Appraisals, Lenders

Renting vs Buying in Grand Rapids Michigan | Summer 2015 Update


You think you’re having a tough time looking for a place to buy in this market? Try renting one! Grand Rapids is currently at nearly 100% rental occupancy, the lowest rental vacancy rate in the US. Home prices have been back to pre-crash levels for about a year now, and the market is increasingly competitive if you are looking to purchase. No surprises here!

So, what’s the best route to go? You’re putting all of this effort in…should you rent or buy? Lets take a look at typical scenario in a great rental area, Eastown, a popular Grand Rapids neighborhood near downtown, where there is a high demand and quantity of both rentals and purchases.

The Eastown Comparison:

52 homes recently sold
(What’s currently for sale in Eastown? Glad you asked.)
Average sale price: $131,780
Average #BRs: 3.5
Avg SQFT: 1743

Average Rent for a 3-4 BR 1750 sqft home in Eastown: $1400/month.

Here’s how it looks, running this scenario through the Realtor.com calculator:


The Upgrade

Looks like buying in Eastown quickly pays for itself, comparing $1400/month rent to a purchase of a $132,000 home. But what if you’re already leasing a home in that price range, but you’re ready for an upgrade and/or increased square footage. You want a home with a nice bit of land, an entry-level home in East Grand Rapids, maybe a distinctive spot in East Hills, or something in an historic district. Your lender says you can afford a $230,000 purchase price. Here’s how that looks:


Try out your own scenairo! Here’s a tool from Realtor.com:

Rent Vs Own Calculator Link

Household Net Worth of Homeowners vs Renters


I sat in on a two hour talk with Lawrence Yun the other week, and it was great. One of the things he brought up that really stuck is how directly home ownership can affect a family or individual’s net worth. Here’s an illustration of the results of the government survey he quoted:


In the short term, it may or may not be considerably easier to lease. But, investment in a home can absolutely help out in the long term, as a homeowner pays down the balance and achieves more and more equity. This is one major reason why the federal government offers so many incentives for first time buyers:

Let FHA Loans Help You
MSHDA Downpayment Fairy
Fannie Mae FIRST LOOK listings
(only available to owner occupants)