The best way to find your next home is to put an experienced professional in charge of your search. Carriage Realty and their team of experts have assembled a wealth of information and helpful tools to assist you in the home buying process. Whether you are a first-time home buyer, experienced buyer, or looking for an investment property, we have a real estate professional that can fit your needs.

Easy as 1, 2, 3! 

1. Our first priority is to listen to you and determine your housing needs. Working together we will assist you in finding the home of your choice.

2. We can call, email, or text you new listings that match your buying criteria. We will show you the latest real estate apps and provide access to the NorthstarMLS, the exclusive hub where realtors post new listings for sale. Wondering why so many home statuses haven’t changed on Zillow and the like? The NorthstarMLS feeds all other real estate platforms and has the most accurate and up-to-date information with NO lag time and fewer discrepancies like on the other public apps and platforms.

But what about homes that are not yet listed? Through our extensive networking system with other Realtors, many times we can find a home that isn’t even on the market yet. This priority notification allows you to select which homes you want to view before other buyers even know about them.

3. To help you determine your purchase price offer, we provide an in-depth comparative market analysis (CMA) on homes in your area that have recently sold and are currently listed. In addition, we will be with you every step of the way through inspections, appraisals, and the closing! Find out more about Title Insurance before your closing!

Let’s get started! In the case that we are unable to take your call or email immediately, a real estate professional will contact you within 24 hours to help you find your new home!

5 Common Mistakes Home Buyers Make

Buying a home is exciting, especially if it’s your first. However, it’s important not to get caught up in the excitement and make a mistake that you will end up regretting. Below are five common mistakes to watch out for:

1. Not Researching Your Neighborhood – You may have found the perfect house for your family, but don’t neglect the neighborhood. Is it a safe area? Are there parks for your kids? Are there good schools nearby? Failing to consider these variables could leave you with a major case of buyer’s remorse.

2. Not Being Pre-Approved – When you’re ready to buy a house, you should immediately seek pre-approval for a mortgage loan. This will let you know how expensive of a home you can afford, and you won’t waste time looking at houses that are outside of your price range. Also, when you do begin making offers on houses, being pre-approved will give you an advantage over other bidders that still need to go through the approval process.

3. Overextending Your Budget – It’s important to take a close look at your budget before buying a house. Many financial experts recommend that your housing costs (including mortgage payments, insurance and utilities) shouldn’t make up more than 30% of your income. If you’re paying much more than that, you are going to run into problems.

4. Letting Emotion Take Over – Buying a house is a very emotional experience. But in order to make the best decision, you need to keep emotion out as much as you can. Specifically, it’s important to avoid showing emotion and eagerness when talking to a seller. If the seller knows that you’re desperate to get his home, he’ll know that he can get away with over charging you. It’s also important to rein in your emotions once you think you’ve found the right house. You need to get it inspected, and you need to be open to the possibility that there are major problems with the house, otherwise, you’ll end up talking yourself into taking a bad deal.

5. Making a Big Purchase After You’ve Applied for a Home Loan But Before You Close – Once you’ve been approved for a loan, do not make any big purchases that require payments, such as a car, furniture or electronics. These payments will change your financial standing and could cause the bank to lower the amount you’re pre-approved for.

Buying a home can be a great experience. Keep these tips in mind and you’ll avoid some of the most common traps that many home buyers fall into.

Before you choose a Realtor, think about this…

  • Ask for the Realtor’s credentials and how they affect you as a buyer.
  • How many homes has the agents sold in your area? Carriage Realty specializes in Washington County and the surrounding areas. Many of our agents are licensed in MN and WI. Make sure that your agent knows your selling area.
  • Is the compensation rate negotiable? Real estate fees are always negotiable. Carriage Realty does not charge as much as the big national chains but is also not a discount Broker. We provide full real estate service at a reasonable fee.
  • Is the Realtor willing to put their sales strategy in writing? The agent should not only have a sales strategy but implement and stand behind it.
  • Are there any other fees that I will be charged by your company? There are many fees associated with selling your home. However, many real estate companies will reduce their compensation rate only to charge you an additional administrative or broker fee.
  • Research the agent’s status with the Dept of Commerce. Has your Realtor had any enforcement actions or violations against their license?
  • Get The Home Buyer’s & Seller’s Handbook from the office of MN Attorney General (FREE)


"Your (Karen's) service would be hard to beat by anyone!!!"
~ Raymond & Marilyn Wagner
"I believe Carriage Realty is the best out there."
~ Jeff
"We had such a great experience with looking for and purchasing our home. Karen made us feel very confident that we were in good hands. She knows her stuff and helped us along the whole way."
~ Charlie & Maureen Wu
"Chris S. has been amazing since day one. As a first time home buyer, he as made the process very easy and painless!"
~ Ryan and Brittney Guerrero
"Chris J. was very knowledgeable and responsive. He was great to work with, I highly recommend him."
~ Jenny