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February and March 2009
Dutchland Woods At Home Because Home Is Where One Starts From
Next issue due date March 15, 2009
S P E C I A L P O I N T S O F I N T E R E S T :
Annual HOA Meeting Sunday March 1, 2009
Our annual Homeowners
Meeting is scheduled for Sunday, March 1, at 1 p.m. There are several great reasons to come to the meeting: get updates on your community, find out what is going on, and what the trustees are working on. There are several positions opening for trustees. The best way to have a voice is to join the trustees or become involved in the neighborhood. There are plenty of opportunities in many areas. One position that is opening is the treasurer. If you have a background in accounting and an interest in our com-munity we could use your help. The social and recreation position will also be open. There are many events our community could enjoy. We need someone for this position and to recruit and oversee the volunteers. If you don’t have the time or talent to become a trustee, become a volunteer! There are many openings for committee members. The ladies that work on the annual garage sale could use your help. It requires a short term commitment. We also have a chili cook off. The Hauglands generously organized this event for many years. We didn’t have this event this year to help support the Dolphins. Would you like to volunteer to head this up or to help out? Do you like to play games or cards? Would you like to join adults or teens for a game night? Come to the annual meeting, or even better yet, come to any of the monthly meetings the third Sunday of each month at 5:30 pm at our very own White House!
Annual HOA meeting Sunday March 1, 2009 at 1:00 pm Wilhelmina Park Pages 1 and 2 Backup Plan For Your Income? Page 2 Winners of The Wii Game System Meet The Herzogs Page 3 Improvements To Dutchland Woods Page 3 Your Property Taxes Page 4 Bajon Salon and Spa Special Price Cut Page 4 Santa At The Movies Page 5 Has The Woods Been Asleep Too Long? Page 5 Makeovers A Real Blessing! Page 6 Mortgage Forgiveness Debt Relief Act Page 7 My Listings and Sales Page 8
W i l h e l m i n a
A meeting held at the White House December 4th was well attended by residents interested in the new park. Since it has always been referred to as Wilhelmina Park, that‘s what the name will be. Consisting of a little over fifty
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With no money yet for its development, Liberty Twp maintenance will mow the grass and Rick Plummer stated at the meeting he will maintain a mowed path around the perimeter of the land. Vehicles and bicycles are not allowed, (continue page 2)
acres north of Wilhelmia Road and bordering Dutchland Woods, it was originally designated to be apartments similar to those west of Yankee Road. Purchased with township and Federal funds, it will now always be a park.
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Do You Have a Backup Plan for Your Income?
Would you like to learn how to make money from everyday purchases? Would you like to learn how to leverage your income for the future working part-time? We are part of a business that has had positive growth for 64 straight quarters and even did well during the fourth quarter of 2008! It is well positioned for explosive growth due to its powerful partnerships and distribution system combined with a personal customer touch. What Makes This Business Special? It is a Product Brokerage Co with Over 2000 Exclusive Products to Sell Distribution of Products in 10 Multi-Billion Dollar Markets Ranging from Health & Nutrition to Internet Web Sites to Cosmetics, Pet Care, Music and Much More A Partnership with Google for Engine Search on 30 Million Products Ability to Earn While You Shop at Over 3,000 Branded Stores Like Wal-Mart, Target, Travelocity, Staples, and Best Buy A Proven System.….Low Cost Entry..…Not Multi-Level Marketing You are invited to learn more. Distributors have already earned over $1.4 billion in commissions. We Live in Dutchland Woods and are looking for partners who want to improve their health and their wealth in 2009! We are scheduling short business briefings in February to review this business system. Please call or email us to reserve a spot.
Joanne & Brad Arnott Independent Unfranchise Owners of Market America, Inc. PH: 755-0997 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
W i l h e l m i n a
Continue from page 1… but walking, model airplane flying, dog walking, picnicking, bird watching, tree/ bush/weed identification, etc. are allowed. Three preliminary layouts prepared by Branstetter, Carroll, Inc. were displayed for viewing and explained by Andy Meyer of the Township. Comments were invited and it was fairly clear that residents want a park for adults. Soccer fields and baseball fields taking a major portion of the park were not welcomed. Walking trails, nature areas, restrooms, bike trails, playgrounds with equipment, picnic shelters, drinking fountains, a concession stand, an amphitheater, and activities for adults were most of what
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residents favored. A permanent small lake or amphitheater at the west end where a storm retention area exists are possible. Residents don’t want traffic and noise to be a problem. Parking could be developed on the other side of a buffer strip along Wilhelmina, or on the north side of the park. Access could also be developed from Princeton Road. The east end of the park lends itself to be a nature area. The trees and stream north of the park land are not inside the park. As of January, not much more attention has been paid the development because of the lack of funds. Christine Matacic attended the meeting and took in the flavor of
the sentiments. Those interested in maintaining contact with those most involved may contact Rick Plummer at the Liberty Township Maintenance Garage, or the Township Offices on Princeton Road. As Central Park is the saving jewel for New York City, so Wilhelmina Park will be a valuable feature for Dutchland Woods. Graeme George
Scott Lyle, Mortgage Loan Originator Contact Information 513-509-1736 Email Scott.Lyle@53.com
Garage Sale Coming Up! Start Sorting and Cleaning! More Details To Come, however volunteers would be very appreciated!
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S w i g e r t ,
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W i n n e r s o f t h e W i i G a m e S y s t e m M e e t t h e h e r z o g s o f 6 7 0 7 W i n d m i l l
John Herzog works with the Cincinnati Metro Bus said she decided to enter her family in the contest, because the main stipulation was that a nativity Company. scene be incorporated in the design. Each year she Pam Herzog is an instructional assistant at puts out a hand-painted nativity scene, and per tradiWoodland Elementary School, painted murals for tion, her daughters place baby Jesus in the manger the cafeteria and library at Woodland, coaches the on Christmas Day. Dolphin Swim Team with three other women and “Everybody needs to know the reason for the seahas organized the community yard sale for four son is about Jesus,” Pamela said of her decoration years. inspiration. Along with the scene, there was a Santa Tiffany, 14, attends the Lakota East Freshman Claus, a North Pole sign and blinking lights up the School and participates in swimming, track, basketdriveway. A pine tree in the front yard, planted after ball and golf. the family’s first Christmas in the neighborhood, also Bridget, 10, attends Woodland Elementary was decorated. School and participates in swimming, soccer and Family activities are important to the Herzogs, who basketball. have been enjoying their Wii. On family game night, The Herzogs, residents of Dutchland Woods for the Herzogs also enjoy playing cards, Aggravation or eight years, are celebrating a new year with the help Sequence. Sometimes they invite neighbors to join in of a Nintendo Wii. They won the game system in a on the fun, and she said that is one thing she loves Christmas lights decorating contest sponsored by best about Dutchland Woods. Royal Redeemer Lutheran Church, located on the “I like the friendly atmosphere of everybody,” she corner of Yankee and Dutchland. Although the famsaid. “They’re a very friendly and nice neighborhood.” ily attends St. Max, Pamela Herzog
We would love to feature your family and neighbors! What a great way to get to know each of us! Call or email the editor today and we will be glad to feature you here!
Improvements to dutchland Woods
Since the storage shed burned to the ground a year ago the fourth of July, the Board has accomplished the construction of a garage type structure for storage of pool and lawn maintenance equipment and materials. Money from insurance paid for the structure and part of the recently constructed thirty by thirty foot shed attached to the back of the White House. It will be used for outdoor parties, weddings, barbeques, picnics and gatherings. Details will be available at the Annual Meeting to be announced. (at print time it appears the Annual Meeting will be March 1, 2009 at 1 p.m..) Also under consideration is the stone lining of the lake, a permanent lighted fountain for the lake, playground equipment, landscaping improvements, maintenance and improvements of common spaces, and many other features of Dutchland Woods facilities. Graeme George GCGeorge@RoadRunner.com
During the past few weeks, you probably received your new tax valuation from the Butler County’s Auditor’s office. Taxes rose for some properties in the past three years, while housing prices have fallen in most places. The new value is based on valid sales in your appraisal area during three-year cycle as required by Ohio law. For your reference, you can no go to the parcel on the county web site by doing a search for your property at http://www.butlercountyauditror.org and see the list of valid sales in your appraisal area. Remember, valid sales are those where there is a willing buyer and seller with exposure to the market. On the auditor’s page, you can find the information and document needed to dispute the new property valuation. If you feel your property has been valued too high, you can put in an application from January to March 31, 2009. However, if a home has sold in the last year or two, the auditor uses that sale price, because he figures that it is the best way to come up with the value someone would pay for the property. If you would like to know what your home would sell for in the current real estate market, please give me a call. I would be happy to give you a free market analysis and can answer any questions you might have. I can even e-mail you a market analysis of your home based on the surrounding area sales. You can contact me at 378-1461 or email@example.com Also, rates are at an all-time low, so refinancing can be worthwhile. Thirty year fixed rates are at 5% and lower, and 15-year rates are at 4.5 and higher. I have referrals to banks and lenders that I work with every day and trust. Call me anytime, and I’ll pass along their information to you. Brenda Swigert, Realtor www.BrendaSwigert.com
Women: $17 Men & Kids: $12
Good through March 15th with Erin and Amanda
Santa At The Movies
Each year I invite past clients, family and friends to my company’s Santa At The Movies. We rent several movie theatres and send out invitations to join us at Kings Island Showcase on a Saturday morning for a new release movie and pictures with Santa. This year the movie was BOLT. It was a really cute movie and all had a good time. There was no sales pitch, no marketing –just a huge thanks for all customers do to help us with our business. We had a great turn out this year, and had three movie theaters full of guests. This next year we will be doing it all over again the weekend of Thanksgiving. So when you’re full of turkey and the kids are tired of being in the house, plan on joining us at the movie theatre and watch your children get their pictures with Santa early without the long mall lines. If you would like me to send you a ticket for the family next year, please e-mail me and let me know. I’ll be glad to welcome you. Here are a few pictures from our Santa At The Movies in December!
Do we have community involvement and committees in Dutchland Woods? Has “The Woods” been asleep too long? Check this list of committees below and see what is missing. The answer is YOU. Everybody is TOO busy to add anything to their lives, right? How about being involved in activities and interests YOU can enjoy, or have always wished someone else would provide? When I moved to Dutchland Woods eleven years ago (I’m a newcomer), card playing was a popular weekly activity at the White House along with parties, picnics, the pool, and caroling at Christmas time. “Wooders” came, met their neighbors, played cards, snacked, and had a good time. They looked forward to the next week. And they became involved in other activities shared by like-minded residents. Tweaking my brains, the following list of committees popped out: Bible Study for Adults, Block Captains, Book Reviews, Building and Zoning, Business and Professional, Card Playing Night at the White House, Carolers and Singers, Changeable Message Sign, Chess and Checkers Players, Child Safe Houses, Common Grounds Improvements, Computers and Printers, Crafts Meetings and Displays, Crime Watch, Deed Restrictions and Enforcement, Dolphins Swimmers, Dutchland Woods Directory, Entertainment, Financial and Legal, Fire Home Safety, Flowers and Arrangements, Garden Club, Good Neighbor Committee, Gourmet Club, Grounds Improvements, Hobby Nights at the White House, Home Maintenance and Repair, Lake Improvements, Liaison with Butler County, Liaison with Liberty Township, Liaison with Lakota School District, Neighborhood Watch, Newsletter Supporters, Picnics Committee, Playground Improvements, Politics and Persuasion, Safety Committee, Sidewalks and Streets, Singles Gatherings, Social and Recreation, S&R Annual Christmas Party, S&R Annual DW Picnic, S&R Annual Easter Party, S&R Annual Super Bowl Party, S&R Bake Sales and Competition, S&R Basketball Competition, S&R Chili Cook-Offs, S&R Golfing and Tournament, S&R Lake Fishing, S&R Lawn Games, S&R Music and Musicians, S&R Potlucks at the White House, S&R Retirees, S&R Story Tellers, S&R Teen Hops, S&R Tennis Competition, S&R Weekend Dances, S&R Texas Hold-Em Night, Toastmasters, Website Maintenance, White House Improvements, Wilhelmina Park, Yard of the Month Awards, and Youth Programs. S&R suggests that the committee would be under the umbrella of the Social and Recreation Committee.
Has “The Woods” been asleep too long?
Wouldn't it be nice if every resident was on one or more committees? We would be a community instead of a sleepy subdivision. There are about 64 committees suggested. That ought to hit most peoples' hot buttons. What’s YOURS? What would all of this cost? NOTHING! Why should anyone pay for your pleasure and pastimes? Pay your own fees and expenses. Hey, that’s a novel idea, but let’s not get into politics, unless, of course, you are on that committee. Graeme George GCGeorge@RoadRunner.com
“Holiday Makeovers a Real Blessing!”
WINNERS DECIDE TO HAVE FUN WITH MAKEOVERS!
BAJON SALON & SPA 874-9999
Mark and Karen Welch, Owners
Four local women will have new styles as they bring in the New Year. Nominated for a makeover at Bajon Salon and Spa in West Chester Twp., the Middendorf family won the Holiday Makeover contest for a local deserving individual. When the nomination came in, owner Mark Welch said he and the staff decided just one makeover wouldn't do and it was a "hands down" decision to give the three women with muscular dystrophy and their mother a makeover. "It was so heartwarming and it was courageous," he said of the nomination. "These three ladies have these terrible debilitating diseases, and they're all so productive. In their nomination it says they don't sweat the small stuff. (The decision) was hands down." Cindy Middendorf normally cuts and styles both her hair and the hair of her daughters, two of whom teach for the Lakota Local School District. So, each chose styles Monday, Dec. 22, that were easy to manage, but different enough to add a little pizazz. Erin Middendorf, 26, a teacher at Plains Junior School, said her students wanted her to go curly with her new look. But, as a compromise, she said she tried out a shorter cut and highlights. Sara Middendorf, 23, said she wanted to keep her hair long enough for a ponytail. "I was a little nervous, but I was ready for a change and this was the perfect opportunity to do it because I wouldn't have done it on my own," she said. Kimberly Middendorf, 29, a fifth-grade teacher at Heritage Elementary School, said she asked her students for advice. "I wanted to ask their opinion, cause I had no clue, and they weren't very helpful," she said. "They pretty much wanted me to stay the same, which was sweet of them." Cindy Middendorf, the primary caretaker, said they aren't used to such attention, but they decided to have fun with the makeover. When she and her husband Gary discovered their daughters' illnesses, it put life into perspective quickly, she said. Since then they have encouraged her daughters to thrive despite adversity. Kimberly Middendorf was 7 years old at the time when the doctors discovered she had muscular dystrophy. Her sisters were 3 and 1. All the girls were able to walk for most of their childhood, but around junior high they switched to wheel chairs. "It's progressive," Cindy said. "Eventually it will take their life. You can decide to wallow in it, or you can decide to make the best of it. We're not going to dwell on it." Lakota Plains teacher and nominator Lisa Silverglade said the family has inspired her so much, she has been trying to get them on "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" for the past few years. After talking to one of the directors during the makeover for the Akers this summer, he said the crew has come back to the same community if there seems to be enough support. Since then, Silverglade has gathered more than 2,600 letters and banner signatures for the family. "If you could see how hard Cindy works, and if you could see how tiny the house is — it's a fire hazard." By touching lives in the Lakota Local School District, Silverglade said the family is an inspiration, especially to others who have disabilities. "They touch those kids and they touch those parents," she said. "So they realize (having a disability) is not a dead end road. It's not over. These girls are so smart and they have a hard time letting us help them. But they deserve a break. Everybody knows them and everybody's touched by them. It's amazing the impact they have."
Press Release from BAJON SALON AND SPA Reprinted from The Pulse Journal
KNOW THE DETAILS OF THE MORTGAGE FORGIVENESS DEBT RELIEF ACT!
By Chris Kaucnik and Michael J. Greenen of RIS MEDIA
NO MATTER THE CIRCUMSTANCES, THERE’S A LOT OF STRESS A HOMEOWNER GOES THROUGH IN A FORECLOSURE OR A SHORT SALE.
Brief Background Prior to December 2007, if a homeowner lost his house due to a bank foreclosure, and the bank forgave any difference between the price it was sold for and what was owed, the homeowner would owe additional income tax on that portion. Yes, it’s hard to believe, but true. Let’s say the homeowner owed $300,000 on the mortgage, but the foreclosure sale only brought in $200,000. Then the bank forgave the $100,000 shortfall. The homeowner would have been liable for the income tax on the $100,00 debt forgiveness from the bank. The IRS considered this money effectively paid to the homeowner, and it would be taxable in their top bracket. Now, because of the unique stresses in the housing industry lately and on our whole economy, in December 2007, Congress stepped in to provide temporary relief in the form of forgiving the debt, but only for 2007, 2008 and 2009 tax years. After that the old rule applies again. To be eligible for this tax relief, the mortgage must be for your principal residence. It does not apply to vacation, investment or other properties. And no more than $2 million of forgiven debt can be excluded from taxable income.
Home Equity Loans Another very important detail in this temporary tax break is if part of the forgiven debt was a home equity loan and used for purposes other than to build, buy or substantially improve the property, that portion is still taxable. In other words, home equity loans used for vacations aren’t included.
Short Sales Now, what happens in a short sale? In brief, this can occur when a borrower is behind on the mortgage payments and the lender agrees (the owner) can sell his house for less than what is owed on the mortgage. But all proceeds must be turned over to the bank. The portion of the mortgage the bank forgives, plus any commission expenses or other selling costs, are taxable income if this debt is canceled. Yes even the commission and selling expenses count. A homeowner can now receive a $250,000 (single) and $500,000 (married) capital gain exclusion on the sale of their primary residence. While $7,500 capital gains tax is surely a lot less than the $100,000 canceled by the lender, the homeowner may not think of this or be aware it could happen down the road, perhaps just prior to retirement. And capital gains taxes are always subject to change.
Mortgage Insurance Affected It is important to also note this act affects extended mortgage insurance as an itemized deduction all the way through 2010. Yes, there’s a restriction. The mortgage contract has to be entered into between December 31, 2006 and January 1, 2011.
Dear Friends and Neighbors, This is undoubtedly a very stressful time for many homeowners. If you find yourself in financial trouble, please contact me and I’ll be happy to help you through this short sale process. I appreciate each of you as neighbors and friends. Brenda Swigert, Realtor
Brenda Swigert Your Neighborhood Realtor® Office: 759-4000 Res: 755-9597 Cell: 378-1461 Website: www.brendaswigert.com
7360 Liberty One Drive Liberty Twp, OH 45044
MY LISTINGS & SALES!!
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4968 Long Drive Liberty Twp $205,500
20 S. Dock Side Drive Springboro $197,000
6931 Rotterdam Ct Liberty Twp $172,222
155 Hollytree Drive Liberty Twp $179,900
6951 Rotterdam Ct Liberty Twp $184,900
6901 Woodland View Drive Liberty Twp $216,900
1317 Meadow Vista Hamilton Twp $299.800
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