Erin Taylor & Leigh-Ann Houchin of 2 Girls with Curls

H: Tell us a little about 2 Girls with Curls:

2GWC: While working at Whole Foods Market in 2011. We were constantly discussing challenges when it came to their hair, especially when finding suitable products. Even with so many new hair care lines on the market it was difficult to find that magical product that was free from chemicals, and still made our hair look healthy, moisturized and beautiful.

One day, half jokingly, we said we should start our own hair care line. This small idea grew into something tangible as we started concocting products in our own kitchens. Several months of research, along with some failed recipes led us to creating the 2 Girls with Curls product line.

H: What inspired you to start this business?

2GWC: We were inspired by the lack of natural products on the shelves that catered to curly hair.  We had both tried several brands but didn’t like the results on our hair. They were either to oily, made our hair too crunchy or had a very strong and undesirable smell.  We were on a mission to create products that increased the health of the hair while also making it look and smell great. 

H: What has been your biggest challenge through this whole process?

2GWC: Not having owned a business of this type we had a lot of learning to do.  Most of the learning was happening as we were progressing with the business because we were more concerned about creating products, not running a business. Another huge challenge has been marketing and brand awareness.  Social Media and word of mouth is the primary way people are hearing about new products. Not having a strong sense of the social media world and how to use it to market our products was keeping us from reaching new audiences.  We recently hired someone to manage our social media accounts and have already seen some positive effects as a result.  

H: What do you find most enjoyable about owning a local business?

2GWC: In the beginning we were just really happy to have products that were making our hair healthy. Ultimately, we love having something that we can call our own. We are very proud of our products and the hard work it took to get our business up and running, and we enjoy sharing this love with potential customers. Living in Columbus, where local brands are celebrated, it’s nice to be included in that celebration. 

H: What do you do for fun when you both aren’t working?

2GWC: Leigh-Ann enjoys traveling, yoga and hanging out with her boyfriend. Erin enjoys spending time outdoors, attending local events, healthy cooking and hanging out with her husband.  Both of us consider ourselves foodies and enjoy exploring the city’s food and craft beer scene. 

H: Where can we find your products?

2GWC: Right now you can find us online at www.naturallycurly.com and locally at Whole Foods, Cliff Wellness, in Grandview, Barre3 in Powell and the Wild Ramp in Huntington, West Virginia and of course at https://www.2curlygirls.com.

Whenever anyone mentions that they’re thinking of putting their house up for sale it seems that everyone wants to give their opinions on the subject. Because of that, a lot of myths have developed that seem to go around like the game, Telephone. Let’s debunk those myths so that when you’re ready to sell, you know the facts!

MYTH #1: Automated Home Evaluations Are Always Accurate

Have you ever seen an Ad on Facebook that says “CLICK HERE to automatically determine your home’s market value” or something along those lines? If the answer is yes, I promise you’re not alone. The problem with the automated home evaluations is that they are not taking every factor into consideration and can result in false information, causing you to believe that your home value is less than what it actually is or even higher than what is realistic.

The internet doesn’t know if you refinished your hardwood floors, updated all your landscaping, added a brand-new deck or any other update you’ve put your hard earned money and possibly even your own valuable time into to improve your home.

What type of evaluation could give you an accurate answer? One where a LOCAL Real Estate Agent asks you for your contact info so they can conduct a personalized market analysis after asking you for more details about your home. Even better, schedule a consultation so that Agent can see your home in person and give you the MOST accurate answer. Listing Consultations cost you zero dollars and you have no obligation to order the for-sale sign and start signing afterwards.

MYTH #2: If You Don’t Have an Open House, Your Home Won’t Sell

Have you ever heard the actual stats on the success of an Open House? According to a 2017 survey by the National Association of REALTORS, only 7 percent of buyers find the home they buy through an Open House.

This isn’t to say that your home shouldn’t have an Open House when it’s for sale, but, it also isn’t the most effective marketing strategy. Holding an Open House will help increase exposure when your home first hits the market. It’s recommended to have your Agent hold one the first week that your home is on the market in order to drive as much traffic as possible to your listing. However, make sure your Agent has other marketing strategies they use other than standing around your house for a couple of hours every weekend.

MYTH #3: If You Price Your House on the High End, You’ll Have Room to Negotiate

Many sellers believe that if they price their house high, they’ll end up at the price they actually want. The problem with this is, that you’ll be decreasing the demand (number of interested buyers) when you first list your home which will automatically create a mindset that the home is priced too high.

When your home hits the market, you want to make sure you are drawing from the biggest pool of buyers to get as much exposure as possible. Pricing it on the high end will eliminate buyers who can afford the price you actually want because their budget might not go up to the price you’re starting with. Instead, price it at or slightly below the market value to increase demand, competition and ultimately more money in your pocket.

If you’re thinking of listing your home in the near future, you’re already in a better position knowing the truth about these common seller myths. To be even more prepared, make sure you schedule a listing consultation with a Haven Real Estate Agent to find out what else you should know before listing your home for sale.

Check out our sellers page to learn more how Haven can help you achieve your home selling goals!

Haven’s Locals We Love! We hope you give these local companies we spotlight a try!

www.babascolumbus.com

H: Give us a brief history of Baba’s

C: Baba’s was the end game for our early food truck life. Starting a food truck and getting Dan’s food out there helped build a trust in his abilities. There was already a small following when we opened Baba’s doors in the fall of 2016. 

H: Where did you get the name?

C: Baba was Dan’s great grandmother. At 16 she was sent to the US from Slovakia and learned how to speak English by working in restaurants and running errands. Her family remembers her as engaging and generous with her time and food. She slaughtered her own chickens and raised an incredible garden. Baba passed down her immense knowledge and love for food. She also drove a ’68 Barracuda!

H: What inspired Dan to become a chef?

C: Family. The one he grew up in and the one he and I built for ourselves. Feeding people is one of the most sacred ways to be of service. Seeing people pat their bellies over an empty plate is all he is after. 

H: What’s your favorite thing about being a small local Columbus restaurant?

C: Building actual relationships with our patrons. We get a chance to network for others. Finding was to connect people in a positive way. We spend as much time as we can speaking with most who come through the door. From watching the babies grow up to the breakups and the hookups (we see you flirting out there); the life of the people who sustain our business make it worth opening that door every day. 

H: What’s the weirdest/funniest request/day you have had at Baba’s?

C: We have the most fascinating and eclectic group of humans who visit. Something hysterical is said or happens so often it is nearly impossible to choose. One of our favorite moments I’ll say, is when we met Mike a tattooer who was almost too shy to ask us any question’s. The moment he said tattoos for BBQ? We nearly knocked him over with excitement. The best part of meeting Mike was that he became family. 

H: If someone walks into Baba’s for the first time what’s the one menu item that’s a must try?

C: I steer newbies to the sausage breakfast sandwich. It’s a classic. We make our own sausage and top it with Havarti cheese and a farm fresh fried egg. All smooshed in our soft house made griddle muffin. 

H: What do you do for fun when you both aren’t working?

C: We are lucky to have a 10-year-old who we spend most of our free time with. As a family, we love drive-in movies and findin g ways to make each other laugh when it’s not appropriate. 

Dan loves to tinker. I’m sure many of our regulars have caught him using power tools around the shop. He has been working on an old Kawasaki Motorcycle that will be done before he retires. 
I make art stuff. Taking photos, playing in ink, melting wax or cursing at a pre-stretched canvas. I am very driven to get the things out of my head and on to something. I mostly don’t know what I’m doing, I just know I have to do it. You can catch a glimpse of my mess of a brain at www.instagram.com/studio.cjnk

You can find Baba’s at: 2515 Summit St., Columbus, OH 43202 (614) 262-2227

Haven’s spotlight on a local company we love! We hope you give them a try!

Garrett Griffin
http://www.griffinlantzinsurance.com

H: How long has Griffin-Lantz has been around and what makes it unique compared to other insurance agencies?

G: Bart Griffin, my father, started Griffin-Lantz 34 years ago in the Millennium Office Park in Dublin, OH. We’re still here in the same office.

What’s unique about Griffin-Lantz Insurance is we are an independent agency that represents 7 different insurance companies, meaning we get to shop insurance rates for our clients across all 7 companies.  This gives us the ability to go to bat for our clients by finding them the best rates and coverage. We get excited about saving people money and providing them with a better experience than what they are used to. Our agency is also passionate about community involvement. We enjoy serving on non-profit boards, volunteering in networking groups, and coaching local sports teams.

H: What’s one piece of advice you can give people when looking for insurance?

G: When looking for home insurance I strongly advise calling an independent agent as they represent multiple companies. As the name implies, they are ‘independent’ and work for you unlike an employee of an insurance company. Independent agents will also be able to provide you with multiple rates, coverage options, and product types to help you make the best decision.

H: What’s the strangest request for insurance you have ever received?

G: A year ago, I would have said Pet Insurance, health insurance for pets, but now we actually have a product for that need!

H: What’s the best part about being an insurance agent?

G: The best part about being an insurance agent is meeting and keeping in touch with so many people. We’re often the first phone call after an exciting home or auto purchase and also after an unfortunate accident, fire, death in the family, etc. No matter the situation, we’re always here for our clients.

H: What do you do for fun when you aren’t working?

G: I recently married my high school sweetheart. We enjoy traveling and trying new restaurants. We have a goal to go to every MLB ballpark and figure out which stadiums have the best food.

H: You’re a local company, how do you stay connected to your community?

G: I am a Varsity baseball coach at Grandview Heights High School. I enjoy giving back to the community that I grew up in by developing relationships with young men and helping them navigate through high school.

My family and I are also involved with Upper Arlington’s Special Olympics program. I first started volunteering with them when I was in high school and the experience was priceless. The relationships I made with both the athletes and volunteers have changed my life. 

I am also a volunteer Web Master at Northwest Area Realty Association, a networking group of realtors and other professional’s involved in the home buying process. We share listings, community information, and work together on several philanthropy projects. 

The question we have been hearing most often here at Haven is, “How is the real estate market?” We can tell you that right now, the Columbus real estate market is off to a great start with good news for both buyers and sellers!

We’ve had low levels of home inventory for several years – meaning homes sell fast! It looks like we are headed for more of the same this year. According to the Columbus Board of Realtors, home sales were 3.7% higher this February compared to last year with 8.9% more homes sold than in January 2019. This is great news for sellers, as there seems to be no shortage of buyers.

Late in 2018 we saw rising interest rates start to affect the market. They peaked a little over 5% but have since come back down. The good news for buyers is that rates have hit a 60-week low and are holding steady in the low 4% range. Mortgage forecasts look to be favorable for the rest of the year which means buyer’s will be able to get more home for their money.

With spring upon us, the housing market has begun to gain momentum and 2019 will still be a solid year of good opportunities for our buyers and sellers. If you have been on the fence about selling or missed out last year with buying, 2019 might be your year. Give us a call so we can help you create a good strategy to meet your home buying or selling needs.

Haven’s spotlight on a local company we love! We hope you give them a try!

Katie Sentz
www.sentzational.com

H: Tell us a little about Sentzational.

K: Sentzational provides holistic health coaching around stress management and dietary issues, as well as, curated meal prep. My health coaching services are established around my client’s needs and completely individualized. My meal prep menus change every two weeks and include everything from vegan, pescatarian, paleo, keto, carnivore diets and more all healthy and pre-made. All you need to do is eat!

H: What inspired you to start this business?

K: I have always been interested in a food related business and then I started a new job that was stressful and created a few health issues. I became a health coach after the realization that I am not alone in my experience and I would like to help others manage their stress so they don’t end up in a situation like mine. Meal prep seemed to go hand in hand with this model. It helps people focus on what is really important in their day and not have to worry about when to grocery shop, cook, or if their meal will be healthy.

H: What do you find most enjoyable about your work?

K: I love connecting with people in new and different ways. Having this business provokes such different conversations. Helping to make my clients lives easier is a definite plus as well.

H: You’re clearly a foodie. Have you always been that way?

K: YES! I come from a pretty food centric family but it was really when I learned how to cook in college that I became a full-fledged food fanatic.

H: What restaurants around Columbus are currently your favorites?

K: Service bar is definitely number one. They have some standards I love and then the added benefit of a “Secret Menu” with their specials for the week. There is always something I am dying to try.

The Market Italian Village is another favorite. They do No Menu Mondays and Charcuterie Wednesdays that are just phenomenal. I love restaurants that step outside the norm and The Market does just that alternately taking the decisions away and presenting you with fresh amazing dishes from the Chef and making you choose your own adventure by opening up their meat and cheese counter for your exploration. 

H: What do you do in your free time?

K: Generally, I am recipe testing, spending time with family and friends, planning travel, or traveling. Free time for me is all about self-care and those activities help me unwind and reset.

Haven is a boutique real estate company that specializes in one thing…. You!

Wouldn’t it be great if you found a real estate company with agents that put you first? Where you feel heard, respected and above all else valued? 

At Haven that is what we are all about. We work hard to provide our clients with the best possible experience during one of the biggest decisions of their lives. Our agents have a passion for what they do and for their clients. We know our city and its neighborhoods and will work hard to get you the best price when selling and to find you the perfect home when buying. Our agents are focused on being there for our client’s during the whole process and beyond. Haven’s real estate services aren’t simply about making the deal, it’s about building long term relationships. 

If you are looking to buy or sell this year why not choose a real estate company that will actually focus on you?

Let’s chat. We would love to get to know you!

While the Columbus region has recently ranked as the #2 housing market in the entire country, we all know that real estate is all about location, location, location. That means that some parts of town are certainly “hotter” than others when it comes to houses selling more quickly and often for above their asking price.

Below are the top 20 zip codes in Central Ohio accord to Realtor.com’s rankings as of June 2018:

  1. Worthington (West) – 43085
  2. Northwest Columbus -43235
  3. Northland / Northeast Columbus – 43229
  4. Gahanna – 43230
  5. Upper Arlington (South) – 43221
  6. Westerville – 43081
  7. Far West Side – 43228
  8. Galloway – 43119
  9. Hilliard – 43026
  10. Orient – 43146
  11. Minerva Park – 43231
  12. Clintonville (South) / Old North – 43202
  13. Clintonville (North) – 43214
  14. Reynoldsburg – 43068
  15. Grove City – 43123
  16. Marysville – 43040
  17. Upper Arlington (North) – 43220
  18. Canal Winchester – 43110
  19. Groveport – 43125
  20. North Union County – 43344

A national report issued Thursday confirms what Columbus-area home-shoppers already know: Demand for homes is high and supply is low in central Ohio.

The imbalance is so extreme that Columbus was the nation’s second-hottest real-estate market in June, topped only by Midland, Texas, according to Realtor.com’s monthly “hotness index.”

Central Ohio has routinely landed in the top 10 in the index, but this is the city’s highest ranking after landing at No. 3 a year agojune 2017. The index is based on the median number of days homes are listed in each market (a measure of supply) and the number of times listings are viewed (a measure of demand).

In June, Columbus-area homes were viewed 2.1 times more than homes around the nation. Columbus homes were on the market a median of 32 days during the month, compared with 54 days nationwide.

The most popular central Ohio home on Realtor.com during the month was a 1939 cottage-style home on the east bank of the Olentangy River in Worthington listed for $725,000.

“It’s gorgeous, right on the river,” said Jo-Anne LaBuda, the Keller Williams Capital Partners agent who listed the home. “We had a lot of activity, 12 to 15 showings, which is good at that price range. The feedback was great.”

The home, which was viewed almost 3,000 times on Realtor.com, entered into contract about a month after being listed, LaBuda said.

Most of the other widely viewed homes in central Ohio during June were far more modest, reflecting the quest for affordable homes.

Columbus’ high ranking reflects the decline of California cities on the list in favor of more geographic diversity. Only five of the top 20 cities in the lineup are in California, and none landed in the top five for the first time in the six years Realtor.com has published the list.

“Supply is so constricted in California that we’re seeing people looking elsewhere,” said Danielle Hale, chief economist of Realtor.com. “Instead, we’re starting to see activity really climb in more affordable markets. Columbus has seen demand really rise.”

Every region of the nation except the South is represented on the list of 20, including the Midwest with five cities.

Following Midland and Columbus in the top 10 are: Boston; Fort Wayne, Indiana; Boise, Idaho; San Francisco; Vallejo, California; Buffalo, New York; Colorado Springs, Colorado; and Detroit.

The next 10 are: Racine, Wisconsin; Grand Rapids, Michigan; Sacramento, California; Rochester, New York; Kennewick, Washington; Stockton, California; Dallas; Worcester, Massachusetts; Spokane, Washington; and Santa Cruz, California.

The median list price in eight of the 20 cities is below the U.S. median of $299,000, reflecting a move toward more affordable markets.

Christmas is coming.

When to start celebrating Christmas can be a polarizing subject. There are generally two types of people when it comes down to it: People who start celebrating the day after Halloween, and normal people, like myself, who wait until after Thanksgiving.

I grew up in a family of Christmas enthusiasts, so I get it. I’ve always been practical when it comes to Christmas planning, but this year, I had to give in. The thing is, I’m busy now. I understand why people start thinking about the holidays months in advance.

Whatever your reasoning is, I’m here to tell you, it’s okay. If you want to pump up the Mariah Carey, put on a Santa hat, and dance around your living room, that’s fine. If you want to have your tree up before Thanksgiving, that’s your choice.

And if you want to go and visit some totally amazing Christmas towns in Ohio every weekend between now and Christmas, I won’t stop you. In fact, I’ll give you a helping hand.

Here are 7 must-see Christmas Towns & Villages In Ohio.

Dickens of a Christmas at Ohio Village
Columbus

What: Capture the spirit of holidays past at Ohio Village, where Charles Dickens’s festive and enduring vision comes to life through jolly carols, decorations, and traditions inspired by his colorful tales. Enjoy craft and cooking demonstrations and shop P. Wylie’s Emporium for the perfect gift. Tickets are $14 for adults, $11 for kids 4-12, and free for kids 3 and under.
When: December 8 & 15 from 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. and December 9 & 16 from noon to 5 p.m.
Where: 800 E 17th Ave, Columbus, OH 43211

The Christmas Ranch
Morrow

via Facebook

What: The “Gift of Lights” is a celebration with 1,000,000 lights which dance to the music. This is truly a magical family experience with shops, food, and fun. Visitors can also enjoy a train or wagon ride! Admission to the Christmas Ranch is $20 per vehicle.
When: November 16 through December 23. Open Sunday-Thursday from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m., and Friday & Saturday from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Where: 3205 S Waynesville Rd, Morrow, OH 45152

Christmas in Zoar Village
Zoar

via Facebook

What: Experience all the joy and cheer of the season during Christmas in Zoar. Visitors can enjoy musical entertainment, a juried craft show, tour the village, take a horse-drawn wagon ride around the village, and more. On Saturday evening, there will be a candle light church service at the Historic Zoar Meeting house, followed by a tree lighting ceremony. Cost for Christmas in Zoar is $8/person and children 12 and under are FREE.
When: December 2 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and December 3 from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Where: Zoar, OH

Castle Noel
Medina

via Facebook

What: Good news for those “every day is Christmas” folks. Castle Noel is the worlds larges indoor, year-round Christmas attraction. You can see props from all of your favorite Christmas movies, including the iconic Santa slide from “A Christmas Story”. Tour prices start at $17 and tickets can be purchased here.
When: Open year round, hours vary.
Where: 260 S Court St, Medina, OH 44256

Historic Roscoe Village
Coshocton

via Facebook

What: Step back in time at the Historic Roscoe Village. During the afternoon, guests may enjoy a horse-drawn carriage ride, visit with Santa, strolling carolers, complimentary hot-mulled cider and cookies, and many other holiday festivities. Roscoe Village will offer “A Roscoe Christmas” tour during each Candlelighting. Learn about Canal Era holiday traditions and how they were practiced in the 1830s.
When: December 2 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. and December 9 from 10 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Where: 600 N Whitewoman St, Coshocton, OH 43812

Legendary Lights at Clifton Mill
Clifton

via Facebook

What: After 31 years of celebration, it’s safe to assume that Clifton Mill knows exactly how to brighten up your holiday season. Although this isn’t technically a whole town event, Legendary Lights at Clifton Mill is 100% worth your time.
When: November 23 until January 1, Saturday-Sunday from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Special hours on Christmas Eve, Christmas, and New Years Eve.
Where: 75 Water St, Clifton, OH 45316

Christmas in the Village
Waynesville

via Facebook

What: Head to Waynesville for a quintessential smalltown Christmas. There will be 1,300 luminaries, carriage rides, decorated storefronts, delicious restaurants, dozens of vendors, and of course, a special appearance by Santa Claus.
When: November 30-December 2
Where: Waynesville, OH

Let’s do Christmas right, Ohio!