Friday, May 31, 2013

Easy Ways to Save...

Recently, Darryl Baskin published a blog article on ways to save.  This article, "Save, Save, Save" had some great tips on easy ways to save a little bit of money.  Two of those tips include:  Refinancing and Upgrading.  When it comes to refinancing your Tulsa home, call your Bixby mortgage banker to find out if refinancing will work for you.  In many cases you can decrease your mortgage payment or you may choose to decrease the number of years you pay on that mortgage and select a shorter term.    Another thing that can help save a little money is upgrading older appliances, older wiring and not so energy efficient heating and A/C units.  This will cost some money initially but will save you in the long run. Contact your Bixby electrician or Bixby A/C company for more information and quotes on upgrading these things.   To read more of the blog post, visit the link above.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Before You Build, Remember This!

Building a Bixby Home can be an exciting yet stressful venture.  There are so many decisions to make, consider this tip from Tulsa Realtor, Darryl Baskin, before you build.

Start Out Right!!-  It's important to start the building process out right. That means working with the best professionals.  Whether you are selecting your Tulsa Builder, Tulsa Mortgage Banker, or a Tulsa Home Maintenance Professional, select carefully.  First, ask your Bixby Realtor for recommendations.  Also, ask the Builder for referrals and call them!  A good indicator of future performance is past performance.  Finally, ask around!  What experience have others had with them.  Is their experience a single one or is there a common theme among all those you talk with.

To find out more about what to do before you build your Bixby home, read "Before You Build A Home".

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Bixby luxury real estate along with luxury real estate nationally, is still considered a buyers market.  Statistics posted on  show that there is little change in the luxury real estate market- homes over $500,000.   Statistics for entry level homes, however, are showing change.   For more information, visit the article "Luxury Real Estate is Still a Buyer's Market" found at

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

When to Lower Your Listing Price

Trying to determine how to price your Tulsa Home for Sale is a very important decision.  Thinking about a price reduction can also be difficult.  Use these questions when thinking about a price reduction:

  • Would you rather wait for an offer or have an offer that you can decline?
  • What is the lowest price you would accept for your home?
  • What does it cost you to own your home? (home maintenance, roofing repairs, lawn maintenance, taxes, homeowners insurance- things that won't be recovered). If those things are costing you $2000 a month and it takes 6 months to sell you will have spent an extra $12,000 versus reducing the price by, say $10,000 and possibly selling soon.  In 6 months you may wind up facing the same reduced price (by $10,000) and then already have spent the extra $12,000. 

Remember that pricing your property correctly from the start is the best choice. Make sure it is priced according to the market.  A good realtor will be able to price your property, with experience, market information, and knowledge of what buyers want.

For Bixby real estate, contact Darryl Baskin of The Baskin Real Estate Specialists at 918-258-2600 or

Interested in a Tulsa mortgage?   Contact Steve Currington of Currington Mortgage at 918-394-5626 or

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

The Ins and Outs of Finding and Using a Tulsa Realtor

Steve Currington of Currington Mortgage was recently interviewed by KC Lupp of Great Day Green Country. Steve discusses the ins and outs of finding and using a Tulsa Realtor. Some of Steve's tips include:

  1. Don't worry about the size of the company. Good agents and bad agents can be found in big or small companies.
  2. Find a Realtor with experience.
  3. As a buyer, make sure you have signed a contract with the agent and are receiving buyer's representation.
  4. Ask for a referral.
  5. Make sure you know and trust your Realtor.

For more information on "What to Look for in a Realtor" visit

For Tulsa mortgage needs, contact Steve Currington of Currington Mortgage, 918-394-5626 or

For all your Bixby Real Estate needs, contact The Baskin Real Estate Specialists of McGraw Realtors, 918-258-2600 or

Monday, January 16, 2012

Damage to Your Hardwood Flooring?

Hardwood flooring is a popular option for many homeowners in the Bixby area. When a good quality hardwood floor is installed properly and needed repairs are done well it provides a beautiful and durable flooring option. When repairs, refinishes, and installations are not done properly, however, or a bad product is purchased it can cause many problems. Here are some common problems with hardwood flooring and their causes:
  • Buckling is usually caused when the flooring is not given proper time to acclimate, moisture testing is not done correctly, or it is not given proper room to expand.
  • Creaking or squishy floors can be caused by incorrect floor preparation on both a concrete slab and a wood subfloor.
  • Fading and color changes can occur simply due to exposure to light over time or from failing to install from different cartons. Since cartons of hardwood flooring can come from different lots it is important for the installer to use several different cartons at a time when installing the flooring in each area.
  • Visible and Invisible defects can occur when using a poor quality hardwood floor. Although it can also occur with even the best of hardwood products, it is less likely when good quality hardwood products and good hardwood flooring installers and repair professionals are chosen.
To ensure that your hardwood floor looks beautiful for years to come, select a good quality floor, have it installed properly, and make sure all repairs are done correctly.

For new hardwood flooring options in Bixby, call Jim Ecrette of ProSource Flooring at 918-252-7711 or and ask for Darryl Baskin's Wholesale Pricing.

Want to buy Bixby real estate? Contact Darryl Baskin, McGraw Realtors, 918-258-2600 or

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Important Questions to Ask Your Mortgage Banker

Although there are many questions that home buyers have when getting a home loan, there are some basic questions that are always important.

How much downpayment do I need to buy a house? If you are a veteran or buying in a rural area you can get 100% financing and seller can pay closing costs. If you are Native American you may be eligible for a Hud 184 loan. This loan requires as low as a 1.25% downpayment, depending on the amount of the loan. FHA requires a 3.5% downpayment, Conventional a 5% downpayment, and Investment loans a 20% downpayment.

What are Points/Origination Fees? Point and Origination Fees are additional fees paid at closing to lower your interest rate. 1 point is $1000.

How do I find out exactly what my closing costs, fees, and other things are when I am comparing mortgage companies and their rates? Ask for a Good Faith Estimate. Look at fee lines 800-900. Compare the rate, points/origination fee, and other items within that range.

What constitutes a rural development loan? It is all based on the population of an area. Owasso and Glenpool are still rural and are eligible for a rural development loan. The USDA Rural Development website can give you more information about an area you are interested in.

How do Mortgage Bankers get paid? My commission is based on the volume I produce. The more I produce the higher percentage I make.

Whether you are a first-time home buyer or have purchased before, no question is stupid. Remember that rules and regulations change and some requirements and information from your previous mortgage may not be the same. Always ask first rather than be sorry later.

If you have questions about a Bixby, OK. mortgage, contact Karen Heston at BOK Mortgage, 918-230-9432 or

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Consider This Before Building Your Bixby Home...

When building a new home, there are so many decisions to make, from the location and builder to which carpet and paint to choose. Keep the following tips in mind when you decide to build a new home.
  • Location- Work with your Bixby Area Realtor when purchasing land and building your home to make sure that the location you desire will fit your budget as well as the style and size you want in your home. Don't find out after purchasing that you can't do what you want or that the market will not handle your specific plans.
  • Building- Select your builder carefully! Ask for recommendations from your Realtor, after all they work with builders everyday. Ask builders for referrals and contact them. Ask plenty of questions and don't be afraid to get more than one quote!
  • Products- Once you have purchased land, selected a builder, and begun the building process, there will be many products to choose. Ask about your options and shop around in advance to make sure you get what you want at the price you want. When selecting roofing products and styles- keep in mind your budget, style of home, and the weather in your area. Remember that by adding ridge vents or using certain materials you can decrease your energy costs. When selecting flooring products- remember to check wear, stain resistance, and even product type (such as carpet, tile, or hardwood). When considering which extras you might want- Think about preventing pests before you move in. 1. Have a Sentricon HD Termite Elimination system installed up front to ensure that termites will not be a problem. 2. Consider using glass mulch in your flowerbeds. Glass mulch will not attract pests like traditional wood mulch, never washes away, and it looks great. Finally, decide if you want any home automation or home theater systems installed. It is easy to have installation done up front before walls and furnishings are in place.
  • Mortgage Options- Check with your Bixby mortgage banker to find out what mortgage options are available to you. For example, can you qualify for a VA or Rural Home Loan? Also, make sure you know your budget and how much down-payment you have. If you have less than 20% to put down, ask about loans that require less down-payment!
Want more information? Contact these professionals or visit

Home-Building in Bixby Oklahoma- Rick Oberlender of US Building Systems at 918-734-1293 or

Bixby Real Estate- Darryl Baskin, McGraw Realtors, 918-258-2600 or

Tulsa Mortgage Needs- Steve Currington, Currington Mortgage at 918-810-0092 or

Bixby, OK. Roofing- Judy Smith, A-Best Roofing, 918-587-1426 or

Flooring Products: Jim Ecrette at ProSource Wholesale Floorcoverings at 918-252-7711 or Don't Forget to ask about Darryl Baskin's Pricing Discount!

Bixby Pest Control- Mother Natures Pest and Lawn, 918-362-2000 or

Glass Mulch in Bixby- Leigh Murray, Garden Glass of Oklahoma, 918-232-0210 or

Bixby Electrical Services- Larry Murray, Murray Electric, 918-835-9605 or

Bixby Plumbing Services- Markwayne Mullin, Mullin Plumbing, 918-258-6636 or

Bixby Home Automation Installation- Keegan Beck, KMB Enterprises, 918-527-1031 or

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Are There Bugs in Your Bed??

Okay. I know you are probably saying "Bugs in my bed? There are no bugs in my bed!" Actually, there are. There are two types of bugs that you are likely to find in your bed: Bed Bugs and Dust Mites. Dust Mites are microscopic bugs that eat dead skin cells that are shed from humans and animals. They can be found in lots of places, but are especially prevalent on mattresses, frequently used furniture, and carpeted areas. Humans slough off 1/3 (or 10 grams) of dead skin a week and cats and dogs produce even more. More than 100,000 can be on your mattress and in one square yard of carpeting. Many of us can actually be allergic to dust mites and their feces, which is a large component of dust.

Some of us might also discover
Bed Bugs. Exterminating Bedbugs can be a difficult task. If you don't treat them they will move through the walls into another persons apartment or condominium (if you have shared walls). These bugs can come from buying things 2nd hand, letting someone spend the night in your home, using someone else's moving equipment plus many other ways. Bed bugs need a blood host- people or animals. They will usually be within 15 feet of a blood host and it only takes them 5 minutes to travel that far. They can sense our carbon dioxide when we exhale. When the population starts to get big, they become a part of your clothing. If you are trying to get rid of bedbugs, wash clothes and everything you can, weekly. They will be in mattresses and many other things. If you start to get bites or look like you have a rash, you might have bedbugs. They look like a tick but are smaller.

I know you're probably saying "That's enough, tell me how to get rid of the nasty things!"

We can't completely get rid of dust mites, here are some ways to reduce dust and Dust Mites in your home:

  • Cover your mattress with a plastic cover or mattress cover made exclusively for reducing dust mites.
  • Use Hardwood Flooring instead of carpeting since it is easier to reduce and clean dust from hard surfaces.
  • Clean regularly. Wash your sheets and blankets at least once every two weeks and clean areas where they are likely to be every week.
  • Reduce fabrics on your furniture by purchasing leather furniture, which is less inviting to Dust Mites.
  • Use quality air filters and replace them often in order to reduce dust and allergens in your home.
To treat for Bed Bugs treatments are completely different. We don't use heat, we use pesticides to treat for Bed Bugs. Treatments range from $500-1000.

For all your Bixby pest control needs, contact Mother Natures, 918-362-2000 or

For more information about hardwood flooring options in the Bixby, OK. area, contact Jim Ecrette of ProSource Wholesale Floorcoverings at 918-252-7711 or (Don't forget to ask for Darryl Baskin's flooring discount!)

To purchase quality air filters contact Rick Butefish of Filters 4 Me at 918-292-8600 or

Monday, November 28, 2011

Fraud in Title Insurance...

Handling fraud in any situation is difficult. When it comes to title insurance, there are some things to keep in mind. First, let's define title insurance. Title Insurance is insurance that covers financial loss as a result of a defect in a title to real estate. Second, we need to know what period the insurance will cover. When we buy home or auto insurance, we are covering our home or auto from the time we purchase the policy until that point in the future that the coverage is canceled. With title insurance, though, it works in reverse. Title insurance covers from the moment you purchase your home and into the past. If you are sued after you close on the property, then the title insurance may not cover you. Finally, title insurance issues can be quite trick. To ensure that you are covered for everything you need, talk to your attorney or your title company. You may even consider asking for extended coverage on your title insurance to cover you from your real estate purchase into the future.

If you have legal problems with your Oklahoma title, contact David Keesling at Richardson, Richardson, Boudreaux, Keesling at 918-492-7674 or

To purchase Tulsa title insurance or if you have questions about Oklahoma title insurance, contact Karen Burnette of Firstitle at 918-493-2241 or

For all your Oklahoma property, auto, and life insurance needs and more, contact Mike Tedford, Tedford Insurance at 918-299-2345 or

For all your Bixby, Oklahoma area real estate needs, contact Darryl Baskin of McGraw Realtors at 918-258-2600 or

Monday, October 31, 2011

What is Home Automation?

Home automation is, basically, anything that gives you control over certain aspects of your property from one location, whether that is inside your home or remotely. Home automation systems can be as simple as being able to control some or all of the lights in your home from one control. It can also be quite complex.

Home automation systems can include: lights (both interior and exterior), security systems, home audio systems, home theater systems, heating and A/C systems, and even window draperies and shades. These systems allow you to use one controller inside your home to control these systems. They can also be set up to allow access through the internet or your cell phone. You can even use voice recognition to access some systems.

What's even better than being able to do all these things without getting up? Saving energy costs at the same time. Many of the features, especially lighting systems, can pay for themselves with a 10% energy savings each year.

For more information on Bixby, OK. home automation system installation , contact Keegan Beck of KMB Enterprises at 918-527-1031 or

Thursday, October 27, 2011

When You Move, Don't Pack These!!

Packing and moving can be a lengthy and stressful process. Knowing what to pack is simple, right? Not always! There are some items that should not be packed when you are using a moving company. Hazardous items are actually illegal for movers to transport. The following items should not be sent in the moving van:
  • Pant and paint thinners
  • Ammunition and firearms
  • Gas, Propane, or Oil
  • Flammable or explosive materials
  • Aerosols
  • Acetone products
  • Stereo
  • Matches
  • Valuable items
  • Pets
For a complete list of items Bixby moving companies can’t move or to move your Bixby area property, contact Mike, Relocation LLC, at 918-455-6683 or

For junk removal services in Bixby, contact David Tittle, I-Haul, 918-261-4008 or

For your Bixby real estate needs, contact The Baskin Real Estate Specialists at McGraw Realtors, 918-258-2600 or

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Protecting Your Property From Fire...

Fire can be a devastating event. It damages everything in its path and can cause serious injury and death. To help protect your family and property from fire, read on.

  • Be prepared ahead of time! Being prepared is probably the most important step of all. This step involves many things. First, make sure you have Oklahoma homeowner's insurance in the event of a fire. Second, have a fire escape plan with all the necessary items such as escape ladders, fire extinguisher, smoke detectors etc. Third, practice your fire escape plan. If you have children, this is especially important. Take time to discuss what to do in the event of a fire and practice this at all hours of the day and night. Don't take for granted that they know what to do.
  • Avoid unnecessary risk! Cigarettes, fire places, and appliances are common causes of fires in the home. To avoid these risks, make sure that all cigarettes are put out before going to bed or if you are sleepy. Consider putting them in a glass of water to be safe. Make sure that fires in your fireplace are completely out. If you use it often, install a screen and glass door for extra safety. Finally, avoid putting appliances near furniture. Appliances and heaters placed near furniture can often overheat and cause a fire to start. When a fire starts from any one of the items above, they often start very slowly and smolder for a long time before actually catching fire and being detected.
  • Test your smoke alarm! It is very important to test your smoke alarm often to ensure that it is working properly. Also replace the battery at least once per year, even if it appears to be working. If your smoke alarm seems to go off regularly when there is not a problem, such as during cooking, consider moving it a few feet away. If your smoke alarm is 10 years old, replace it.
  • Keep Emergency Numbers on Hand! Keep emergency numbers near all phones in case of fire or emergency.
  • No matter how much we prepare, we can't completely prevent fires in our home. should a fire occur, remember to call your insurance agent and Bixby area home maintenance professionals to take care of any damage and ensure insurance coverage of repairs.

Contact these professionals for questions or quotes:

Homeowners Insurance Coverage in Bixby, OK- Mike Tedford, Tedford Insurance, 918-299-2345 or
Roofing Repairs in the Bixby, OK area- Judy Smith, Abest Roofing, 918-587-1426 or
Fire Damage and Restoration in the Bixby area- Roger Fisher, PCC Cleaning and Restoration, 918-641-1111 or
Bixby, OK. Electrical Repair- Larry Murray, Murray Electric, 918-835-9605 or
Plumbing Repair in the Bixby, OK. area- Mullin Plumbing, 918-258-6636 or
Junk Removal in Bixby- David, I-Haul USA at or

Monday, September 26, 2011

Tips for a Less-Stressful Closing!

Buying and Selling a home can be a stressful process, but when the closing process doesn't happen smoothly, it can add even more stress. Here are a few tips to help the closing process happen without a few of the most common glitches. First, listen to the professionals. If your real estate agent or mortgage broker gives you suggestions for the closing and moving process, heed their advice. They see problems regularly and can help you avoid some of the most common problems. Second, pack and move out of the house as early in the day, or even the night before, as possible and schedule closing for the afternoon. For buyers, schedule the final walk through earlier in the day as well. This added time should help with any unplanned delays. Third, consider adding a little extra expense to your budget in case there is a delay in closing and storage or hotel costs are needed or you need to hire a professional for an unexpected home repair. Finally, ask for a final settlement statement a day or two in advance of closing so that there last minute surprises are kept to a minimum.

For more information on the closing process or if you are in need of Bixby area closing services, contact JJ Pierce, FirsTitle, 918-493-2241 or

For all your Bixby, OK. mortgage needs, contact Karen Heston, Bank of Oklahoma, 918-488-7353 or

For all your Bixby, Oklahoma area real estate needs, contact, Darryl Baskin, McGraw Realtors, 918-258-2600 or

Monday, August 29, 2011

What exactly is Home Automation?

Home automation is, basically, anything that gives you control over certain aspects of your property from one location, whether that is inside your home or remotely. Home automation systems can be as simple as being able to control some or all of the lights in your home from one control. It can also be quite complex.

Home automation systems can include: lights (both interior and exterior), security systems, home audio systems, home theater systems, heating and A/C systems, and even window draperies and shades. These systems allow you to use one controller inside your home to control these systems. They can also be set up to allow access through the internet or your cell phone. You can even use voice recognition to access some systems.

What's even better than being able to do all these things without getting up? Saving energy costs at the same time. Many of the features, especially lighting systems, can pay for themselves with a 10% energy savings each year.

For more information on home automation system installation in Bixby, contact Keegan Beck of KMB Enterprises at 918-527-1031 or