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New real estate office in town

Valerie Spicer, owner of the new Re/Max Blue Ribbon office, located in Oxford. Photo by Andrew Moser. (click for larger version)
July 27, 2011 - Home buying or leasing in the Oxford/Addison area has just gotten easier with the addition of Re/Max Blue Ribbon, located at 352 N. Lapeer Rd., to the Oxford community.

Owner Valerie Spicer, who has been working in the real estate business for the past eight years, chose to open her Re/Max location in Oxford because of its location along N. Lapeer Rd. and proximity to the downtown area.

Spicer began her real estate career with Keller Williams Realty before joining Re/Max.

According to Spicer, she moved to the Oxford area in 2007 and ventured out on her own before coming back to Re/Max.

"Even though in the tough economy we've had, I've been pretty fortunate and successful with my career. They (Re/Max) offered me a deal I couldn't pass up," she said.

Spicer added she was excited to begin working in Oxford, especially since the real estate market was beginning to pick back up.

According to Spicer, the lack of foreclosures on the market and multiple buyers for the same listing was a good indicator the market was rebounding.

She also cited low interest rates, which are currently at four-and-a-half percent for Federal Housing Administration loans.

"I think people are taking advantage of lower interest rates, as well as there are still some hopping deals out there people are jumping on before the prices start to increase," Spicer said.

She said it wasn't just young families looking to take advantage of the good deals.

"I have a mix of everything. I have investors that are still taking the opportunity to pick up houses to use as investments...and I do have a few seniors that are looking to downsize and move into condos," she said.

"I think we are at a point where we are starting to level (off)," Spicer added. "We are not in a declining market anymore, so it is like the last chance to get in before prices start going back up."

In addition to individuals buying homes, Spicer indicated the market for renting homes is still very strong.

"I still think there are several people that are coming out of foreclosures and short sales that need to rent," she said. "I believe renting right now is in high demand, and it is going to be about three to five years before we start to see that decrease because those people that need to rent, they need to have time for their credit to build back up."

Spicer said she has seen a lot of growth in the Oxford community since she moved to Oxford from Royal Oak four years ago.

Spicer gives credit to the general community atmosphere, the school system and the downtown area for attracting families to the Oxford and Oxford Township area.

"It seems like it is a family oriented community, but yet you still have the opportunity to purchase homes with acreage and a little bit of space (bigger yards) instead of when you get closer to the suburbs, where lots are smaller," Spicer noted.

According to Spicer, her family moved to Oxford in order to raise her horses.

She said she was working at the Re/Max office in Royal Oak when she came across a piece of property in Oxford that would suit her families needs.

"We love it out here," she said. "We have a great little horse farm going on . . . with two little kids. We love the area and are excited to be a part of the community."

Besides Spicer, her office has three real estate agents and a full office staff.

"We are dedicated to providing the best service possible and that means we are in constant contact with the buyer or seller," Spicer said. "We like to have that personalized service beyond just sending emails back-and-forth...we still like to have that one-on-one, hands on phone call or personal meeting to make that home buying or selling process as flawless as possible."

Spicer cannot say enough about the way Re/Max has embraced technology as part of selling their listings.

"I think they are the leader in technology. I have searched several franchises, and by far Re/Max blows away all the competition in regards to being first on Google...you can do Youtube presentations as well as (Youtube) listings," she said.

She even noted they started putting quick response (QR) codes on signs at listings.

"If people have an IPhone or a Smartphone and scan the QR code on the sign, they can get all that information and pictures on the house," she added.

On Thursday, Aug. 18, Re/Max will be having a grand opening ceremony from 3-7 p.m. Along with having hot dogs and beverages, the Remax hot air balloon will be present.

Re/Max Blue Ribbon is open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Spicer can be reached by calling (248) 628-5700 or by emailing valspicer@att.net.

Andrew Moser is a staff writer for the Oxford Leader.
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