You’ve decided to buy a home!

Congratulations you’ve decided to buy a home! We believe this is a good decision. The key is finding the right home.  And lucky for you we’re here to help you do just that. We’ve lived and worked in Minneapolis and the surrounding area for over 20 years. Developing a strong understanding of the neighborhoods and the local housing market.

But before you get to far along one of the very first steps you need to take after making the decision to buy is to secure financing. You need to know what you can afford before you start looking at homes. Looking at homes outside of your price range is a waste of time if you’re a serious buyer and can lead to severe disappointment.

Once we know how much you can afford to buy we’ll help you pinpoint homes that meet your specific needs. We’ll do that by setting up a MLS search that’s unique to you so you can check out homes online. And we’ll start talking to our network to identify pocket listings or homes that aren’t quite on the market yet. Once you identify a few you’d like to see, it’s time to get out there an actually start looking at homes to buy.

Looking for a home to buy

We’re currently working with multiple buyers who are looking for a home to buy. They are pre-approved and ready to make an offer. If only we could find a house. The current inventory levels (homes that are currently for sale) in Minnesota are low. This isn’t new news, they’ve been steadily declining in recent years. On top of that the Twin Cities population is increasing and more and more baby boomers are aging in place. As a result the competition is extremely competitive for first time home buyers. Houses are once again selling quickly. Many in multiple offers. Consequently frustrating even the most patient home buyers. Our advice, understand the market, manage your expectations, buy what you can afford and most of all be patient. The right house is out there. We promise.

Looking for a home to buy | Real Estate Blog | Matt Engen Group

#firsttimehomebuyer #lookingforahometobuy #realestate #realtors #mattengengroup #remaxresults

How to Clean your Stainless Steel Appliances

When getting ready to sell your home the number one and easiest thing you can do is clean. And then clean again. Paying close attention the bathrooms and the kitchen. Both have to be immaculate, they really do. And if that stresses you out I’m here to tell you that it doesn’t end there, because now that your house is for sale you need keep your home clean.

In the kitchen this means that all surfaces need to be wiped down for every showing including the appliances. If you have stainless steel appliances you will need to pay close attention to how you clean them. You don’t want to leave behind finger prints, streaks or water spots. And surprisingly enough we see this a lot.

The easiest way to keep your stainless steel appliances clean for showings is to purchase Weiman Stainless Steel Wipes. Trust me when I tell you that they’re a life saver. You can purchase these at Home Depot or Target for less than $4.00.  Keep them under your sink for easy access and before you leave the house give your stainless steel appliances a quick wipe down and without a doubt they will look brand new!

I recently introduced this product to our client. Check out the before and after pictures we took of her stainless steel appliances.

This is the before picture:

How to Clean your Stainless Steel Appliances | Blog | Matt Engen Group















And now the after:

How to Clean your Stainless Steel Appliances | Blog | Matt Engen Group















I’m sure you’ll agree that this product is worth the $4.00 price tag. I mean what a difference! And it’s so easy. All you need to do is wipe and go.

To summarize it doesn’t have to be difficult to keep your stainless steel appliances clean.  All you need is the right product and 2 minutes to make them sparkle. A clean home really does do more than appeal to a buyers sense of aesthetics. It tells them that you have taken care of your home and it’s a wise investment.

#stainlesssteelappliances #sellingtips #sellyourhome #mattengengroup #cleanhome

Family Fun Day!

Our family found ourselves with nothing to do yesterday. Amazing, I know. This almost never happens to us, no sports? no work? what to do? I was personally looking forward to curling up with a good book and staying in my PJ’s all day. But we live in a house with two boys, who are 12 and 14 years old. If we didn’t find something to do as a family they’d spend the day in front of the TV playing Fortnite with their friends. And that means I would lay in bed that night fretting about the massive amount of screen time I just let them consume.

Matt and I decided we’d go bowling at Town Hall Lanes. Both boys surprised us and quickly agreed to go. If you haven’t been to Town Hall Lanes it’s a neighborhood bar/restaurant and 10 lane bowling alley located in Minneapolis. Matt and I like the food and their beer, the Masala Mama is our favorite. The atmosphere at Town Hall Lanes is relaxed, clean and kid appropriate. It was busy, it always is, but we were able to get a lane immediately. We got our shoes, ordered drinks and appetizers, made new friends and bowled 2 really fun games. Turns out I can still kind of bowl, at least well enough to beat the boys!

Family Fun Day! | Real Estate Blog | Matt Engen Group

We love the fun retro feel of the lanes.

Family Fun Day! | Real Estate Blog | Matt Engen Group

And the shoes.

Family Fun Day! | Real Estate Blog | Matt Engen Group

Success, no one fought the picture and everyone smiled. #momwin

Everyone was feeling pretty good after bowling and no one was in the mood to go home so on a whim we decided to head to Can Can Wonderland for some mini golf.  When we arrived we were told it would be a 1 hour and 45 minute wait. I almost lost the family but I convinced everyone to step inside, (thankfully I had been here before and knew what to expect). Once inside they were blown away by what they saw and decided to stay.

We ordered a few drinks at the bar while the boys ordered popcorn and a pretzel from the State Fair themed menu. Then we played vintage pinball, foosball as a family but the majority of our time and money went to trying to conquer Donkey Kong. The time flew by. We were mini golfing before we knew it. Navigating our balls around lit up ferris wheels, a tornado and at one point we had to trade our golf club for a baseball bat. The boys were captivated and challenged the entire time. The atmosphere was fun, creative and definitely kid friendly. A quick tip, if your kids are older go a little later in the day, it was fun when they dimmed the lights and the place lit up.

Family Fun Day! | Real Estate Blog | Matt Engen Group

Vintage pinball machines is really fun to look at, hard to play.

Family Fun Day! | Real Estate Blog | Matt Engen Group

Mom and dad against Preston and Dillon for a couple games of foosball – we win!

Family Fun Day! | Real Estate Blog | Matt Engen Group

I can’t remember what hole this was but this couch brought back so many memories. So did the blanket.

Family Fun Day! | Real Estate Blog | Matt Engen Group

The first hole starts with a bang. Your ball takes a ride on a lit up ferris wheel.

#thingstodo #minneapolis #sundayfunday #minigolf #bowling #family #mattengengroup


Winter in Minnesota

Winter in Minnesota really isn’t my favorite time of the year. So why do I live here?  Well when I awoke this morning I was reminded how beautiful winter can be. Most days I’m too cold to really enjoy the beauty of it. I bundle up and run as quick as I can from place to place. But when I looked outside this morning the sun was shining and the snow was clinging to the trees, it was almost magical. What did you think of the last snowfall? Love it or hate it? We would love to hear.

Winter in Minnesota | Matt Engen Group | Real Estate Blog


Winter in Minnesota | Matt Engen Group | Real Estate Blog


Winter in MN | Matt Engen Group | Real Estate Blog

#winterwonderland #onlyinmn #mattengengroup #home

The Spring Real Estate Market in Minneapolis

The timing of the Spring real estate market is something every seller ponders in anticipation of putting their home up for sale. We get asked about the Spring market and whether or not they should wait for it to arrive almost daily. Our answer is always the same. We’ve seen the Spring market start as early as January and as late as Mother’s Day. So many factors effect when it will arrive; the weather (especially in MN) current inventory, mortgage rates, the state of the world, you get the point. So before we can answer the question, should I list now or wait for Spring? We need to know what your goals are. When do you need to move? Do you have the time and the flexibility to wait for the Spring market to arrive?

Why the Spring market? Traditionally the Spring market is popular because the weather starts to warm up, the holidays are over and people are chomping at the bit to get out of the house. In addition, starting the closing process now allows them to be moved in before school starts. And winters sets in again. It also tends to have more transactions that go into multiple offers than any other season.

So what can you do if you have the time and flexibility to wait for the Spring market? Since it typically takes a few months to get a home ready for sale, starting now makes sense. Here are a few things you can do. Make your home as marketable as possible, declutter, paint and update key rooms like the kitchen and bathroom. Selling your home “as-is” promises quite a bit more work than todays buyers are willing to take on. Price it right and stay competitive. Because even in a hot market it’s better to be in line with other properties and attract multiple offers than pricing it to high.

If you’d like more information about the Spring market and what you need to do to get your home ready for sale, contact our team. We’d love the opportunity to work with you.

 Spring Market | Matt Engen Group | Real Estate Blog
#mattengengroup #minneapolisrealestate #realtors #springmarket #remaxresults

5 steps to selling your home

Selling your home? Here are 5 things you can do now to get your home ready for sale.

Talk to your Realtor. We highly recommend contacting the Matt Engen Group but understand if you’re already working wth an agent. Either way getting your Realtor involved at the very beginning of your journey is key. Be prepared to share your goals and timeline with them so they can connect you with the right people to make things happen.

Treat your home like a business. This house is no longer your home, it’s an asset. One you’re trying to get top dollar for. So disconnect emotionally from the living room paint color and the pictures on the wall. Now is not the time to take other peoples likes and dislikes personally.

Learn your homes market value. After visiting your home, your Realtor will put together a Comparative Market Analysis. This includes information about the local market, recent comparable sales and an opinion of your homes value. This is what the agent believes your home will sell for in todays market.

Get a home staging consultation. The goal of staging is to make your property more marketable by creating a home that is the most appealing to the largest number of perspective buyers. Staging makes your house look the best for showings, pictures and videos. And homes that are staged typically sell quicker and for more money.

Make the requested changes and repairs. The stager will more than likely make a variety of suggestions from de-cluttering closets and cabinets, fixing the broken closet door, to painting the living room and everything in between. Complete the entire list and move on. You may have purchased the property that way but it doesn’t mean that is shouldn’t be fixed now. Finally, remember the goal, we want to appeal to the largest number of perspective buyers possible.

#mattengengroup #sellingahome #home #realtor #staging


2018 New Home Goals

Is buying a home your goal for the new year?  If you’re nodding your head yes, you’ll want to be ready to go, don’t delay and take these steps today.

  1. Talk to the Matt Engen Group. Because we have a strong understanding of the local housing market and can often help provide referrals or direction if you’re not sure what to do.
  2. Consult a Lender. This is an important step and the quicker you do this the easier it will to plan and prepare your budget for the new year. Your lender will help you answer questions like; How much will I need for a down payment? What are closing costs? How much will my monthly payments be? And then you can decide if they’re inline with your 2018 goals.
  3. Decide where you want to live. Visit the neighborhoods you’re considering, walk the streets and visit the local establishments. Plan your commute to work and actually drive it, during rush hour. And if you have kids you’ll want to check out the neighborhood schools.
  4. Start looking at homes online. And I’m not talking about the popular Real Estate sites like Zillow or Trulia. Have our team set up an MLS search, this is a great way to get an idea of what is available in the neighborhoods you’ve selected in your price range. MLS is the most up to date and accurate information you can find.
  5. Finally, consider starting sooner than later. You’ll have less competition and more ability to negotiate.

Buying your first home is exciting, and we believe it’s a good decision but there’s a lot to think about before you start looking so it’s a good thing we’re here to help. If you’re ready to get started or just have a few questions contact our team we’re happy to help.

2018 New Home Goals | Real Estate Blog | Matt Engen Group

#mattengengroup #REALTORS #buyingahome #newhomegoals #2018

Homes for the Holidays

I’m a huge fan of the freshly fallen snow and the twinkling lights but most of all I love to see how everyone decorates their beautiful homes for the season. Today I’m going to share a few homes I’ve found on Instagram, each one is as different and beautiful as the next. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do.

Homes for the Holiday | Matt Engen Group | Real Estate Blog

I’m not sure where this one came from, I save so many houses I occasionally lose track.

Homes for the Holiday | Matt Engen Group | Real Estate Blog

Instagram @northern_vernacular

Homes for the Holiday | Matt Engen Group | Real Estate Blog

Instagram @patticakewagner

Homes for the Holiday | Matt Engen Group | Real Estate Blog

And this is our house, it’s not as decorated as some but this is where our heart is.

You can find it on Instagram too @mattengengroup


#homefortheholidays #home #mattengengroup #mnrealestate

Southwest Minneapolis Neighborhoods

We’ve lived in the Kenny neighborhood of Southwest Minneapolis for 17 years.  We love this neighborhood so much we moved next door. Yes we moved next door. No worries, I thought it was odd at the time too. But I’m happy we did it and I really can’t imagine living anywhere else.

The Kenny neighborhood is a quiet neighborhood at the very edge of Southwest Minneapolis. The boundaries are West 54th Street to the north, Lyndale Avenue South and Highway 121 to the east, West 62nd Street to the south, and Logan Avenue South to the west.

Homes in the Kenny neighborhood were built between the 1930s and 1950s. Bungalows dominate, but there are also two-story homes. We happen to live in one of the two-story homes with cedar siding. It’s a blue house, perched on a hill and it brings us much joy.

We love our neighbors, Kenny park, Kenny Community School, Anthony Middle School, the quick and easy access to Hwy 62, Grass Lake and the shops and restaurants at 54th and Lyndale.

If you’d like to learn more about the neighborhoods in Southwest Minneapolis or are considering a move, we’d love to chat. After living and working here for the majority of our lives. We can confidently tell you that we know the neighborhoods and understand the local market.

For more information on the neighborhoods of Minneapolis, visit


#minneapolis #neighborhood #mattengengroup