Holiday Events in the Quad City & Surrounding Area

Enjoy the holiday happenings!

Explore a new holiday event this season and see what our local towns have to offer.

Lighting of the Commons at Moline’s John Deere Commons

November 18, 3:30-6:00 pm

 

Savanna’s Downtown Christmas Walk

November 27, 5:00-8:00 pm

 

Pioneer Village Christmas Walk at Long Grove’s Dan Nagle Walnut Grove Pioneer Village

November 27, Noon-4:00 pm

Christmas in the Village in Davenport’s East Village

December 1-2, 6:00-9:00 pm

Christmas in LeClaire in downtown LeClaire

December 1-3

Savanna’s Museum Festival of Trees

December 2-10

East Moline’s Lighted Christmas Parade in downtown East Moline

December 5, 6:00 pm

Geneseo Christmas Walk in downtown Geneseo

December 9, Starts at 8:30 am with a 5K and continues through the 5:00 pm lighted parade

Winter Nights Winter Lights at the Botanical Center in Rock Island

December 2, 4-7, 10-24, 26-30, 4:30 pm-8:30 pm

 

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November Holiday Events in the Quad City Area

Santa Claus

The holiday season is here, and the Quad City area has plenty of events to help you get into the holiday spirit.

Bix Bistro Fall Fest

Hotel Blackhawk – November 9, 6-9pm

Enjoy live music, hand passed samples from our new dinner menu, Great River Brewery beer flights, $6 house wine, $3 GRB craft brews, raffle giveaways, and a unique s’mores bar on our patio.

Holiday Shopping Expo

Geneseo Senior Citizens Center – November 18, 9am

Find something for everyone on your Christmas shopping list, including something for yourself at our Annual Holiday Shopping Expo! Shop with local crafters, artisans, and direct sales consultants all in one room for one day only! Enjoy delicious homemade breakfast and lunch at the onsite food stand.

Festival of Trees Holiday Parade

West Third Street, Davenport – November 18, 10am

Experience the largest helium-balloon parade in the Midwest! Live marching bands, large character balloons towering over three stories tall, clowns, floats and more. Come and enjoy the holiday festivities during this annual parade.

Kwik Star Quad City Arts Festival of Trees

River Center Great Hall – November 16-26

Experience the magic of the most loved holiday tradition in the Quad Cities. Quad City Arts Festival of Trees is one of the top 10 events of its kind in the country with something for everyone. There are gorgeous trees, decorated gingerbread houses, holiday room displays, kids’ activities, live entertainment, a winter train display, a huge toy tree, and more.

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Prepare Your Home for Winter

Winter Preparation

Winter Preparation

Winter is coming, and your home needs to be prepared. Follow these tips to save on your energy bill, and save yourself from having to pay for expensive emergency repairs.

  1. Invest in Weather Stripping

Weather stripping your doors and windows is a great way to seal in warm air and keep cold air out. Be sure to check windows, doors, vents, electrical and gas lines for any drafts or leaks. Sealing up gaps will lower your utility bill and keep your house warmer.

  1. Clean Out Your Gutters

Before you put away your rake this fall, remember to remove the leaves from your gutters. If gutters are clogged in cold months they are more likely to freeze and cause damage. Blocked gutters may also lead to melting snow leaking into your roof or foundation. The time to clean the gutters is in the fall, not when you are trying to remove an ice jam in January.

  1. Buy a Roof Rake to Prevent Snow Buildup

An average roof can handle about four feet of fresh snow before it becomes stressed. If snow continues to pack down after multiple storms, it may cause structural problems. If you expect a lot of snow this winter, be sure to clear the snow from your roof.

  1. Trim Trees Around Your Home

If there are long tree branches above your home, be sure to trim them before winter arrives. Branches broken from heavy snows can cause damage to your home, and a few hours of trimming might save you thousands of dollars in damage repairs.

  1. Protect Pipes from Freezing

It may be tempting to turn down the heat when you leave town for the holidays or a winter get away, but make sure it’s warm enough in the house to prevent freezing temperatures. Also be sure to let your faucets drip during serious cold snaps, as this will provide relief during extreme temperatures. If water flow does stop, contact a plumber immediately.

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How To Increase Your Odds of Qualifying for a Loan

Loan Qualification Tips

Loan Qualification Tips

Qualifying for a loan can be stressful but following these tips may make you more attractive to lenders.

  1. Improve Your Credit Score

You generally will need a credit score of at least 620 to qualify for a mortgage loan. Eliminating credit card balances, paying off debt and making timely payments are great ways to improve your credit score before you even approach a lender for a loan.

  1. Don’t Miss any Bill Payments

This is one of the biggest ways to show you have a history of paying your bills on time. Missing bill payment deadlines can have a serious impact on your credit score, and make lenders less likely to give you a loan.

  1. Make a Large Down Payment

If a lender sees you’re capable of paying for a larger percentage of the house up front, they might be more likely to give you a loan. Having a large amount for a down payment means you’re committed to the home and more financially secure. This also puts you in a lower risk category for defaulting on your loan.

  1. Consider How Much You Need to Borrow

If you’re approved for a $250,000 loan, it doesn’t necessarily mean you can afford a $250,000 loan. When you ask to borrow less than the loan amount you qualify for, your lender may be more willing to approve your loan request.

  1. Avoid Large Purchases Until After You Close

If you’re borrowing near the maximum loan amount, avoid making large purchases on your credit cards. Lenders will consider this a larger risk and will be more likely to deny your application. Wait until after you completely seal the deal before adding more debt onto your credit cards. This means you may want to put off buying new furniture with your credit card until after your closing is settled.

Want to know how much you can afford to borrow? Check out the mortgage calculators.

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Find Halloween and Fall Fun

Things to do in October.

Things to do in October.

Dress the kids in their scariest or sweetest costumes and have a safe and happy Halloween. Check out the local activities and events to keep the fun going for the whole month of October.

IOWA TRICK-OR-TREAT

Bettendorf Oct 31, 5-7pm

Clinton Oct 31, 6-8pm

Davenport Oct 31, 5;30-7:30pm

Davenport North Park Mall Oct 16, 5-7pm

Eldridge Oct 31 6-8pm

LeClaire Oct 31, 6-8pm

IOWA EVENTS

Bettendorf Halloween Parade Oct 28, 7 pm

The parade will begin at the intersection of 23rd Street and Middle Road, continue onto Spruce Hills Drive. The procession will travel to 18th Street, turning left onto 18th Street, continuing to Middle Road, turning left on Middle Road, and finishing at the entrance of the Life Fitness / Splash Landing parking lot. Do not stop in the lot. All entries need to continue through the park back onto 23rd Street.

Bettendorf Life Fitness Center Oct 27, 6-8:30 pm

The LFC will host an indoor night event on Friday. The night will commence with a Halloween-themed costume and dance party beginning at 6:15 pm! Families are encouraged to show up in their favorite Halloween costumes. The dance party will last until 6:45 pm. Promptly at 6:45 pm, the movie will start. We will be playing Hotel Transylvania. This is a family friendly, Halloween cartoon. We will have cash concessions available. Families are encouraged to bring a blanket and lawn chairs to enjoy the movie!  Admission is $2.00 per person for members of the LFC and their family. For non-members, admission is $4.00 per person. Pay at the front door at the event.

Clinton Halloween Parade Oct 30, 6:30 pm

“A Suessical Halloween”

LeClaire Apple Fest Oct 8, 8 am-5 pm

 

ILLINOIS TRICK-OR-TREAT

Coal Valley Oct 31, 5-8pm

East Moline Oct 31, 5-8pm

Galesburg Oct 31, 5-8pm

Geneseo Oct 31, 4-7pm

Kewanee Oct 31, 5-7pm

Moline Oct 31, 5-8pm

Moline South Park Mall Oct 17, 4-6

Rock Island Oct 31, 5-8pm

Savanna Oct 29, 2-4pm

Silvis Oct 31, 5-8pm

 

ILLINOIS EVENTS

Moline Halloween Parade Oct 15, 2 pm Downtown Moline

Moline Spooktacular Oct 21, 2:30-5 pm

Held at Prospect Park Moline and hosted by Moline Parks & Rec. Join us for a spooktacular time at Prospect Park this October! Kids, come dressed in your costumes for trick-or-treating around the park (trick-or-treating will begin at 3:00 p.m., signaled by staff)! There will be plenty of fun characters to meet along the trail. Participants will also be able to enjoy refreshments (while supplies last), a bonfire and a complimentary magic show, performed by the Quad Cities Magic Club! Admission is free.

Schedule of Events:

Refreshments and bonfire (while supplies last) 2:30pm

Trick-or-Treating 3:00pm

QC Magic Club Show 4:00pm

Niabi Zoo’s Boo at the Zoo October 28, 10-3pm

Quad City Botanical Center Family events every Sunday in October

Rock Island Fright Night in the Park Oct 26, 5-8pm

At Schweibert Riverfront Park FREE event

Savanna Kids’ Parade Oct 29, 1 pm down Main Street

 

HAUNTED HOUSES IN ILLINOIS

Factory of Fear

Shock House

QC Haunted Forest

APPLE ORCHARDS

Stones Apple Barn

Happy Hollow U-Pick

Shady Knoll Farm, Inc & Pumpkin Patch

Pride of the Wapsi

Alpha Country Corner

Tanners Orchard

PUMPKIN PATCHES

Alpha Country Corner

Pride of the Wapsi

Buffalo Pumpkin Farm

 

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Five Things to Do Before You Move

Get ready to move

Get ready to move

When you decide to move, it can be hard to keep track of all the details. You’re concerned with so many different things, but you want to be sure you don’t forget these essential tasks of moving.

  1. File a Change of Address

You must contact the post office and file a change of address form to have your mail forwarded to your new address. It usually takes about 7-10 days for the change to go through. Be sure to also let your bank or any other institutions sending you mail know you have a new address.

  1. Cancel Utilities

Contact your utility providers to let them know when you’re leaving your current address. You don’t want to be charged for utilities if you’re not living in the home. If you’re planning a local move, you may be able to just transfer the account to a new address.

  1. Complete Repairs

It’s especially important if you’re leaving a rental to do a final walk through of your living space. You want to try and get the entirety of your security deposit returned. Check the walls and cabinets for any scuffs or marks that require paint.

  1. Determine How You Plan on Moving

Make sure you plan ahead of time on how you’re planning on moving. Do you need to rent a moving truck, or will you be able to fit everything into your vehicle? If you’re moving to a different state or city, you may want to hire professional movers to load and unload your belongings for you.

  1. Packing Essential Items

Don’t be scrambling through everything you packed looking for an item you desperately need. On the day of the move keep essential items in easily accessible locations. You want to be sure to have plenty of toiletries, water and food readily available when you arrive at your new home.

Find more tips to help you prepare if you are selling your home and moving.

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Don’t Forget about Property Taxes!

Property Tax Time

Property Tax Time

Many first time buyers don’t take into account the cost of property tax on their new home and are surprised by their first tax bill. Make an informed decision when buying a home by understanding these property tax basics.

What are Property Taxes?

Property taxes vary from home to home, and are used to pay for various government programs like schools, libraries and emergency services. Property taxes are based on the market value of the home, not the price you paid for it.

How are the Taxes Assessed?

A home value assessment is usually conducted at the time of sale by a government tax assessor. You should ask the seller when the last assessment was done and what value the home was given. Be prepared for tax assessors to stop by throughout the year, especially if you’ve made improvements to your home.

Am I Eligible for Any Deductions?

There are several deductions applicable to property tax. There are deductions for military personnel, senior citizens and energy efficient homes. Deductions vary by location so the best thing to do is talk to a real estate agent to determine your options.

You can find the annual tax due for homes you are considering purchasing on the Mel Foster website. Just look under general features in the description of the home listing.

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How to Create the Perfect Sunroom

Sunroom Elements

Creating a sunroom

The hours of daylight are starting to get shorter with the approach of fall. Soak up all the sun you can by creating a sunroom in your home with these elements.

  1. Comfortable Furniture

Your sunroom should be a second living room. Having a nice area rug or cushioned furniture is a great way to make the space more comfortable. Try to pick natural colors to go with the natural light in the room.

  1. Environmental Controls

Add a space heater or ceiling fan to your sunroom to create a comfortable temperate. And don’t forget you should run your ceiling fan in the winter to push the warm air down. Just reverse the fan’s direction for winter use. If you’re considering a larger investment, adding a fireplace will create a room you can use even when there’s snow on the ground.

  1. Privacy Shades

It’s nice to be able to see out and enjoy the view, but it’s even nicer to have an option for privacy if you want it. Shades or window treatments also keep the room cooler or warmer depending on the season and sunshine.

  1. Greenery

No sunroom is complete without plant life. Even low maintenance plants will make you feel like you’re out in nature. If you have more of a green thumb, you can put multiple types of plants with vibrant colors in your sunroom. As a transitional space between your home and the outdoors, the sunroom needs to have thriving plants.

Want more ideas for your sunroom? Check out this weekend’s open houses.

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Mel Foster Co. is Local and Global

We're Local. We're Global.

We’re Local. We’re Global.

Mel Foster Co. is proud to be a member of Leading Real Estate Companies of the World® (Leading RE), an organization that pairs buyers with the top real estate agencies around the globe. If you’re moving to a new city, state, or even country, Mel Foster Co. can help you find your perfect home through the LeadingRE network of agents.

The biggest benefit to buyers is starting the process with Mel Foster Co., a local, familiar company to help you take the next step to find a home in a potentially unfamiliar place. Whether you’re planning on moving for a new job or just needing a fresh start some place new, Mel Foster Co.’s relocation specialists can help you expedite the home search process. Mel Foster Co. can help you with questions about currency exchange, required documentation and any other information you need to relocate internationally.

Mel Foster Co. relocation experts will connect you with an agent who is familiar with the area you’re moving to and put you in direct contact with them. By communicating with a LeadingRE member, you’ll be starting your home search on the right track. Through LeadingRE, you can view thousands of properties around to globe, and also see what life is like in different countries. LeadingRE partners offer firsthand knowledge of multiple cities around the world and can tell you what to expect when living there. If you’re thinking of moving out of the area, contact Mel Foster Co.’s relocation department for help getting connected to your new community.

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Housing Shortage Benefits Sellers

Housing Shortage Benefits Sellers

Now is the time to sell

It’s currently a seller’s market, with housing supply down significantly in the local area. The shortage of inventory is the main reason why sellers are doing so well in the current market and getting higher offers for their property. Plenty of homebuyers are demanding homes, but don’t have as many options to choose from as they did in the past. Low demand simply means higher sales prices.

In the U.S. roughly 900,000 new homes are available for sale per year, but the demand is for approximately 1.5 million homes. This shortage in the supply of homes gives sellers the advantage when putting their home on the market. Combined with low interest rates, this shortage of housing supply is causing many homes to be sold quickly and competitively, often at a higher than market value price.

Housing experts speculate the shortage will continue for at least four more years even if home construction numbers increase. The supply can’t keep up with demand now that millennials are the largest home buying group in America. The large unmet demand for housing is continuing to grow with no signs of slowing down.

Curious what your home might be worth? Click here to connect with an agent and receive a competitive market analysis.

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