Real Estate Blog

Whether you're just starting out or making a switch from another profession, real estate provides the flexibility and freedom to set your own pace. Using the latest in technology and resources, we help our agents reach their greatest potential. Begin your journey into a career with CENTURY 21 Signature Real Estate. For more information, visit

Laurie Culp
Director of New Agent Training and Development
P: (515) 291-1522

Take the Real Estate Personality Assessment. This assessment will determine your personality type and how you can use it to become more successful in your Real Estate career.


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We would like to congratulate Laurie Culp on her new position as the Director of New Agent Training and Development for CENTURY 21 Signature Real Estate. In addition to this new role, Laurie will also continue to list and sell homes from the Ankeny branch.

We sat down with Laurie to congratulate her and to ask her a few questions:

When did you get involved in real estate?
Around 2000, we were approached to sell our acreage which was a top-to-bottom, inside-out renovation. Since we did the work ourselves, we were able to take the large profit and purchase an income property and put a down payment on a new-construction home. Because of that, the wheels started turning and I got my license within the next year.

When did you start working for Century 21?

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We would like to congratulate Jennifer Clark on her appointment as the Managing Broker for the Urbandale branch office of CENTURY 21 Signature Real Estate.  With more than 15 years of experience as a real estate expert in the Greater Des Moines region, Jennifer offers a wealth of knowledge and expertise.

Graduating from the University of Northern Iowa with a degree in Finance with a real estate emphasis, Jennifer Clark became a licensed real estate agent in 1999 and has been a Des Moines metro area agent ever since. Jennifer’s background allows her to understand the financial side to buying a home. She knows what the local lenders have to offer and she prides herself on making her clients aware of some great options and helping them every step of the

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  1. Ames
  • Ames has a population of 59,206, with a population density of 2,445 people per square mile.
  • 24.214 square miles of Ames is land, and 0.063 square miles is water.
  • The median age of an Ames resident is 23.6 years old. The population is 47.31% female, and 52.69% male.
  • The air quality index is 93.4, and the water quality index is 61.
  • Ames has an unemployment rate of 2.40%, with annual job growth of 2.23%. Over the next 10 years, job growth is expected to be 42.10%.
  • Median household income is $41,561.
  • The median home age in Ames is 32 years, and the median home price is $197,500.
  • 4.04% of all housing in Ames stands vacant.
  • Ames has 202 sunny days per year, and 90 days a year with precipitation.
  • Ames ranks 94 on
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We know that finding an affordable home isn’t always as easy as it sounds, especially for those who need larger spaces, plenty of land or other specific criteria. One way to obtain a dream home, yet still afford it, is to purchase a foreclosure. These homes need work, but buyers get a great deal to compensate them for the inconvenience. We’ve compiled a few basic tips to help buyers avoid common foreclosure pitfalls and smooth the way to homeownership.

Use a Qualified Agent

If you are only interested in foreclosed homes, choose an agent that has experience with buying foreclosures. These agents have often developed relationships with the banks and mortgage companies and know about homes before they are even listed. They also know which ones have

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There is nothing more relaxing than sitting on your back porch and looking out over a lake, river or creek. For this reason, many homebuyers are in the market for a waterfront retreat or home with a view. However, purchasing a waterfront property isn’t something you should do without learning the basics about life on the water. Keep in mind these potential issues and talk with your real estate agent before you become too attached to that lakefront home!

· Access – A home can be on a lake or river, but not actually provide access to the body of water. Find out if the property has deeded access or if there is any other access stipulated in the sales agreement.

· Insurance – A home on a body of water is likely going to be in a flood plain. This may

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