November Newsletter – Cut Holiday Costs without Cutting Value

Snow Day!Cut Holiday Costs without Cutting Value

Click here to view download or print our November Newsletter:  November Newsletter – Matt

November is a good time to talk about money. Why? Because during November and December, people spend on travel, gifts, and food at a rate of three to four times their ordinary rate of spending. The result is that many people end the holiday season in January with a profound sense of loss—in the pocketbook.

So I thought it would add value to your life to discuss some approaches to spending wisely over this holiday season. Here are some of my suggestions for cutting costs without cutting the fun.

1. Instead of cooking everything for your holiday parties yourself, invite guests to bring a dish, dessert, or drink they can share with others. Coordinate so that you don’t get too many cookie plates and too few main dishes.

2. Think of high-value gifts that don’t cost a lot. A gift basket filled with low-cost, but fun items is a big hit.

3. When someone in your life has expensive tastes, see if you can get relatives to share the cost, and that can be their gift. A 14 year old boy would probably prefer to get one new Xbox from four relatives than get four separate gifts of clothes and books.

4. Make your own decorations instead of buying them. Google DIY Christmas (or whatever holiday you prefer) Decorations, and you’ll get tons of ideas!

If you put your mind to it before you start spending, you can probably come up with even more ways to save this holiday season. Let me know what you find.


Matt Haviland
Your Real Estate Consultant For Life

P.S. Another way to save is to use e-cards instead of mailed cards this Christmas season. If you want to send me an e-card, send it to: – I’d also love to hear from you in person at 609-338-3773. That’s free!

Relax and Smell the Roses and October Newsletter

Relax and Smell the Roses

Do you ever find yourself rushing around in a frenzy of productivity, and when you finally have a moment to yourself, you only then realize how tense and stressed you’ve been?

Here’s how that moment happened recently to me. I had just gone through a fast food drive- through line, and was sitting in my car in the parking lot, too busy to go inside to eat. The morning had been a dash to finish errands, and the afternoon looked busier still. My mind was clouded with thoughts.

DSC08243I was planning to snatch a moment to gulp down my food before continuing my errands.

As I was taking a bite, I noticed a little bird hopping around the parking lot looking for crumbs. It was so small and intent on searching for food. I tore off a piece of bread and tossed it to the bird. It hopped over, grabbed it and flew away.

At that moment I felt myself relax a notch. I tossed another piece of bread out the window and another bird flew down and snatched it up. I breathed deeply and sighed.

I drove away with a little smile, feeling more attentive to my surroundings instead of being so inwardly focused. Just that little bit of sharing in the moment had brought me back to the present.

I encourage you—as I remind myself—to stop and smell the roses, as the old saying goes. When trying to get a lot done in a short amount of time, a brief moment of getting present can give you energy to push on.


Matt Haviland
Your Real Estate Consultant For Life

P.S. If you’ve got a story to tell, you can reach me at or by calling me at 609-338-3773

P.P.S.  Click Here To Download and View My October Newsletter:  October Newsletter – Matt Haviland

How to Sell Your House Without Reducing Your Price

How to Sell Without Reducing Your Price

Dear Friend,

Here’s a quick note to let you know how I can help you—or anyone you feel comfortable introducing me to.

No home seller wants to reduce their price because their house isn’t selling. Here are 3 ways to prevent that from happening: First, price it well to begin with. Price it no more than properties are selling for in your area. You can place a premium for things like a view or a staging-logostunning yard, but not for things like a remodeled kitchen. On the other hand, not having a remodeled kitchen could cause the price to drop. Second, make it show like a model home. Clean every crevice. Fix every bit of deferred maintenance. Remove your personal possessions. Clean up the landscaping. Third, talk to me about how to minimize drawbacks and maximize advantages. As your real estate consultant, I can tell you a great deal about how to get more from the sale of your home, possibly putting thousands more in your pocket when you sell.  As a certified Real Estate Staging Expert I can conduct a complimentary analysis of your home and provide you with a custom eight page report with staging recommendations.

If you or someone you care about wants to get more out of the sale of their home, please call me at 609-338-3773 or Ask for a copy of my report, The 10 Dumbest Mistakes Smart People Make when Buying or Selling a Home.

Matthew Haviland, Your Real Estate Consultant For Life Keller Williams Realty Atlantic Shore 609-484-9890 ext 132

P.S. Who do you know who’s thinking about selling their home? Please introduce us so that I can make suggestions for how to sell for more

Thanks For Your Support For Denise Haviland

I want to take a moment to thank the many friends, family and co-workers who helped make our October 1st Golf event and dinner a success.  This event is a big help to my Aunt Denise and we raised over $7,000 profit from the event to help her with her expenses as she battles stage 4 cancer.   Thank you!  Matt

Port Republic, NJ Ribbon Cutting On The New Town Hall Building 9/23/14

Port Republic Ribbon CuttingI was proud to attend the ribbon cutting ceremony for the new Port Republic, NJ town hall.  My home town of Port Republic is a small town with great historic past nestled along the Mullica River and Nacote Creek in Atlantic County NJ.  Around three years ago the existing city hall had to be demolished because of soil contamination.  Mayor Gary Giberson and town council chose to build a new building and found a way to build without any tax payer dollars!   Resident Clarence Hanselmann discovered that the soil in town was valuable soil.  When the parkway construction began they were able to lease vacant city owned land to a contractor who would use the soil to complete parkway construction.  These funds paid for most of the cost of the new town hall.  Please take a moment to watch the video with a few highlights and photos of the day.

Best wishes, Matt

P.S.  Do you have any fond memories of Port Republic?  What do you like best about Port Republic?  Please share your thoughts in a comment or send me a message.

What Makes Me Different?

What Makes Me Different?


Here’s a quick note to let you know how I can help you—or anyone you feel comfortable introducing me to.

All real estate agents are not created equal. The best agents invest considerable time and expense before, during, and after the transaction. Suppose a buyer makes an offer on a house, but has not yet met with a lender. An inexperienced listing agent might encourage the seller to accept the offer, tying up the property, only to discover that the buyer is not qualified. By taking the home off the market, momentum is lost and the result might be a 1% to 3% drop in sales price. A more experienced listing agent would demand proof before recommending accepting the offer. This is not a legal requirement, but a protective action to minimize risk. There are literally dozens of small and large decisions like this that protect a client and increase the likelihood of the deal closing. The value of this expertise is shared with clients in the form of a successful and profitable transaction.

If you, your friends, or neighbors are planning to sell their home, contact me to get top representation: 609-338-3773 or Ask for a copy of my report, How to Stop Spending Money on Rent and Own a Home Instead.

Matthew Haviland, Your Real Estate Consultant For Life Keller Williams Realty Atlantic Shore 609-484-9890 ext 132

P.S. Who do you know who’s thinking about selling their home? Please introduce us so I can discuss their situation and help them plan ahead.

Matt’s Home News September 2014

Here is my September Newsletter:  September Newsletter – Matt


This, Too, Will Pass
Fun Facts About Fall
September Quiz Question
Flexible Electronics Are Coming
Natural Cleaners You Have Around

The House
A Fit House Is Worth More
The Nautical Origins Of Rummage

Pancake Math
What Not To Do Everyday At Work  Keep The Motor Running
Preventing Alzheimer’s

Sunset at Greentree Church, Egg Harbor Township, NJ

Don’t Look Where You Don’t Want To Go

Are you familiar with the idea that we tend to attract more of what we focus on? Here’s a great story that perfectly illustrates this concept.

A man who was afraid of heights decided to conquer his fear by rappelling down the side of a steep cliff. A guide was on hand to help him, but as he stood on the edge of the cliff, the sight of the long drop and the rocks waiting for him down below made him freeze.

The guide gave him some simple advice: “Don’t look where you don’t want to go.” By this simple twist on familiar goal-setting advice (“look where you want to go”), the man was able to complete his descent.

The following Monday at work, the man remembered his mountaineering advice. He had been stressing about all the stuff he didn’t like about his work: his boss, his effectiveness, his job duties, some of his co-workers. He had been trying to create goals for himself, but they just made him feel anxious and incomplete.

After his climbing trip, he realized that he was overly focused on what he didn’t like about his workplace. So he resolved to not look at the things he didn’t like. He chose instead only to focus the entire day on what he liked.

The result? He found himself relaxing more, getting along with his boss better, and getting more done.

After reading this story, I spent the entire day reciting things I like about my work and the people I work with. I refused to look at my problems or shortcomings. Within minutes I felt great. Give it a try and see for yourself, and let me know what you think!


Matt Haviland
Your Real Estate Consultant For Life

P.S. If you’ve got a story to tell, you can reach me at or by calling me at 609-338-3773. 

USDA Financing Changes Areas Of Eligibility For Galloway Township and Egg Harbor Township, NJ

As of October 1st Egg Harbor Township will no longer be eligible for USDA 100% financing and parts of Galloway Township will no longer be eligible.  This popular loan program has allowed many home buyers in our area to buy with zero down payment.  The good news is there are other financing programs that will allow you to purchase with as low as 3.5% down payment.  My challenge to potential home buyers is to think differently and purchase with as much down as possible rather than purchase with as little down as possible.

If a home buyer were to purchase with 20% down they would often receive a lower interest rate, lower monthly fees, and of course lower mortgage amount.  This would allow them to pay off the house more quickly.   Now this thinking requires something unpopular… saving money!  Saving money can be done and a great resource I discovered to help with that is the Financial Peace University Course offered by Dave Ramsey.  This class will help you get in a mindset of saving and it also is a comprehensive financial education course that includes topics like insurance and investments.  I highly recommend it!  There is a class staring up locally at Fusion Church in Somers Point, NJ starting September.  You can find a class and register online at

Fusion Church – Financial Peace University Class

701 New Hampshire Avenue,Somers Point, NJ
Starts: Sep 23rd at 6:45pm

 Here is a link to changes in USDA eligible areas.   Eligible Areas Of Galloway Township Below:

Screen Shot 2014-09-22 at 3.10.13 PM

Map Of Eligible areas of Galloway Township, NJ for USDA financing as of October, 2014.

Can You Help Us Help My Aunt Denise?

Final Golf Classic Flyer promoMy Aunt, Denise Stern Haviland, is fighting a brave battle against bone, lung and brain cancer.  To help her through this time our office is sponsoring a golf tournament and dinner to benefit her on October 1st.  Can you help?

Please consider coming to golf, coming to the dinner or becoming a sponsor.  Thank you for your support and encouragement.  All the details are found online at

Thank you, Matt