Deciding to make a move begins with why you are moving and identifying what you truly want in your next home. The following steps will get you off to a good start and give you experienced professionals to guide you along the way.

  1. Make a list of things you are needing in your next home, such as the number of bedrooms, bathrooms, garage, living space, and outdoor space.  
  2. Outline the perimeter of the geographic area you are willing to consider living in, giving consideration to commute time for work, shopping, and community attributes you may enjoy.
  3. Identify your budget and how much you feel comfortable paying monthly for a home payment. 
  4. Start saving. Most loans require a down payment plus there are moving expenses, utility deposits and home inspections that will need to be paid. 
  5. Check your credit score, there are a few free ways to check without affecting your credit score.
  6. DO NOT open new credit cards or make large purchases, If you do need to trade vehicles make sure you run it by your lender first.
  7. Online mortgage calculators are easy to use as a quick reference when starting your home search but they do not replace an experienced lender. 
  8. Get pre-approved for a loan, if you do not have a lender, we can recommend an experience professional.
  9. Give us a call and schedule a free Home Buyers Consultation. Start out right with a personalized home buying plan designed for your needs. 
  10.  We will schedule home showings that work for your busy schedule and guide you with experience and professional care every step of the way. 


For many buyers making a move is based on a change in lifestyle whether you are buying your first home, making a move to your dream home, buying a second home, or retiring, this move is important.  We are honored to have the opportunity to guide you are you venture ahead!


Roxanne Johnson, Broker, ABR, CRS, GRI

Posted by Roxanne Johnson on November 7th, 2022 11:27 AM

A recent survey from the International Association of Home Staging Professionals shows that staged homes sell three times faster and for a sales price of 5 to 20% more on average than competing nonstaged home. These 10 Steps will help prepare your home for photos, showings, and impress buyers to obtain the best price possible when selling your home.

1) Declutter - Start the packing process by sorting items into pack, pitch, sell, or donate. Choose one space in your home or garage to store boxes and totes. The goal is to clear walkways, open floor and wall space allowing buyers to view the home, not your belongings.

2) Depersonalize - Remove trophies, knick-knacks, posters, most family photos, collections, and don’t forget the refrigerator magnets. Depersonalizing allows prospective buyers the ability to picture themselves in the home by removing distractions.

3) Pack up Seasonal Items – Off season clothing, décor, tools, and things that you will not use for the next 4 to 6 months. This will clear closets and storage spaces, allowing buyers to appreciate the storage the home has to offer. 4) Clean - After you have decluttered, depersonalized, and packed unused items, its time to focus on detailed cleaning. Start with lighting, wall switches, outlets, baseboards, trim, windows, and doors, working your way to the floor. Using a painter’s tape to mark areas to come back to for touch up paint or fix is an easier reminder.

5) Lighting - Clean your fixtures inside and outside your home. Remove dust and bugs, along with replacing missing or non-working bulbs, covers, & globes. Check that your lights are all the same color glow such as a bright white. Electrical is a safety concern and an appraisal issue. Good lighting is important as it is inviting and brightens up walkways and small rooms feel larger.

6) Floors – When cleaning your hard surface floors, check over grout areas and corners, carpets should be vacuumed weekly. Consider a professional cleaning and use a recommended product for pet and household stains. Cleaning up spills and mess right away will help keep you ready for showings on a short-term notice.

7) Painting - Paint color is one of the most inexpensive updates to a home selecting neutral colors such as a beige or gray, will give your home a fresh look and impress buyers. Make sure to choose the right type of paint for the area you are painting, your local paint expert can help you decide on flat versus satin vs eggshell, latex, or enamel.

8) Windows – Clean the glass and the windowsills, painting or staining areas that needs attention. Broken glass and screens can usually be repaired by the local hardware store or a glass company. Well maintained windows impress buyers.

9) Window Treatments - Curtains, drapes, along with the rods and blinds are all considered to be attached to a property and included in the sale. Cleaning the window treatments and ensuring they are in working order is helpful in preventing a surprise later. Removing window treatments not included, dated, or worn is recommended prior to photographing the property.

10) Curb Appeal - House numbers should be easy to read with well-lit entries clear of clutter and clean swept. Store away equipment like rakes, sprinklers, and outdoor toys. Keep up seasonal needs such as mowing, maintaining landscaping, and removing ice and snow.

First Impressions Are Important When Selling Your Home!

Roxanne Johnson, Broker/Owner

Posted by Roxanne Johnson on October 28th, 2022 3:49 PM

We may wish we had a crystal ball to tell the future when making one of the most important financial decisions in our lifetime. Making real estate decisions can be much easier when you have our experience with the market to guide you through the steps of buying and selling.

You probably have a few “what if” scenarios running through your mind which can be stressful. With over 25 years as a Real Estate Broker, I have developed a step-by-step guide to buying and selling with RE/MAX Select Properties. This guide is here to help you and answer your “what if’s”. 

Our first step is to meet with you so we can listen and learn how we can best assist you with your move. This will allow us to make recommendations personalized to you. While we follow industry procedures for our clients, we go a step above to ensure each situation is a personalized to you.  We can recommend local professionals to assist with home inspections, lending, and closing on your new property.

When planning your move, we will take into consideration your current living situation; are you renting? Do you need to sell to buy? Are you comfortable owning two homes?  

Buying and Selling at the same time leads to many more good questions.

  1. How do I sell my current home and buy my new home without owning two homes? 
  2. I am afraid of selling and not finding a house, what do I do?

The answer to both questions is to use a “contingency” that protects you. The appropriate wording and legal forms need to be included as part of the purchase agreement to safeguard you from owning two homes at once or ending up without a home at all. This “contingency” is essentially a safety net that will spell out the terms of the contingency.  It may seem complicated to you, but we have successfully assisted hundreds of clients make their move pulling it all together to meet your needs and manage risk. 

We understand the concerns and are here to guide you as your local Realtors. Simply reach out via phone or email to set up an appointment for a free consultation with us that fits your schedule.  Whether you are buying or selling we are here to guide you and provide you with resources along the way when making a move.

Do not let fear of the unknown stop you from the opportunity to love where you live or make a change that opens a new chapter for you.  We may not have a crystal ball, but we have something more valuable, it’s Experience You Can Count On!

Roxanne Johnson, Broker, ABR, CRS, GRI      

Kelsey Bergey, Realtor

Posted by Roxanne Johnson on October 21st, 2022 11:09 AM

6 Tips to Get Your Home Cold Weather Ready

October is one of my favorite months! I love everything from the colorful mums and pumpkins to the falling leaves and crisp clean air! It’s easy to be caught up in visiting corn mazes and haunted houses and forget the cold weather moves in and we will soon be scraping frost from your car windows.

Here are 6 tips to help prepare your home for winter and save on your heating expense.


  1. Disconnect your exterior water hose and drain the hose. If your faucet is not a drain back style you may need to shut it off, then drain the line in the basement to prevent the hose bib from freezing and cracking the water line.
  2. Check the exterior of your home and garage for loose or missing caulk around windows, doors, AC unit piping, and other openings. Apply caulk wherever you see cracks, gaps, or holes to prevent cold air, insects, and rodents from getting in.
  3. If your basement windows are not double paned add a 1-inch insulation board on the inside. Remove debris from exterior basement window well and cover with a hard plastic window well covers. This will keep snow and rain out of the window wells and help prevent leaking.
  4. Hire a professional to inspect your heating system annually to ensure it is operating properly and efficiently. Change the furnace filter monthly for efficiency, this is also helpful to reduce dust and allergens in your home.  SAFTEY TIP: for gas mechanicals and appliances ensure your CO2 detectors are in your home to the state guidelines.
  5. Clean the rain gutters, removing leaves and debris before winter as this will help snow thawing and rains come spring while maintaining the integrity of your gutters. Make sure your downspouts are clean and in place directing water 3 to 6 feet from your foundation.
  6. Check the Insulation level in your attic to prevent heat loss and ice dams. Insulate the rim joist in your basement which will prevent heat loss and drafts.  This will save on your heating costs and keep your warm your toes!


Tips for Fall Showings


                What a fun time to decorate your home inside and out! While preparing your house for fall showing keep in mind, we are on the countdown to cold temperatures. Pack away items such as outdoor furniture and lawn art to ensure its not frozen in when it comes time to move!  

                Curb appeal is important all year round. During the autumn months keep up on mowing, trimming trees and shrubs plus raking leaves and cleaning up the landscaping.  We recommend placing a few mums and pumpkins for color and creating a festive and inviting feel for buyers.

                Indoors, keep the house cozy and well-lit. Make sure your windows sills and glass are clean and maintained, many buyers like to check over windows and doors considering colder weather is on the way. Take care of the little To- Do List as a well-maintained home is a great first impression.

 If you really want to make every effort to impress, bake. There is nothing more inviting to a potential home buyer in the fall than the aroma of a freshly baked apple pie, breads, and cookies for your guests.  Supper in the crock pot is always a welcoming aroma for potential buyers and is a great way to have supper ready when you get home!

Posted by Roxanne Johnson on October 17th, 2022 10:14 AM

Preston is an easy town to “Get hooked on.” Known for their Trout Days celebration, Preston sets beautifully on the Root Rivers as the county seat of Fillmore Count. Preston offers various job opportunities and community attractions, and a hometown feel to the community.

Preston’s community boasts numerous businesses available to you, to fit your lifestyle and daily needs. Active Businesses in Preston include:

  1. Grocery Store, Hardware Store, Dollar Store
  2. Clinic, Pharmacy, Ambulance, Fire Department, Senior Housing
  3. Floral & Gift Shop, Antique Store
  4. Restaurants, Liquor Store, Bowling Alley
  5. Automotive Repair, Gas Stations, Body Shop
  6. Bank, Attorneys Office, Accountant, Insurance
  7. Library, Parks, Bike Trail, Golf Course, Bait Shop, Fishing, Kayaking, Canoeing, Tubing, National Trout Center, Tennis Court, Historic Forestville, Mystery Cave, Forestville  State Park (Hiking, Horseback riding, and camping), Tack Store
  8. Hotel & Motel Lodging, Camping  
  9. Childcare Center & Elementary School
  10. State Veterans Cemetery, Serviceman’s Club & Veteran’s Home to Come

Preston is home to many community organizations for all ages with community events and celebrations; as well as various organizations for a variety of interests including several recreational activities, an active community foundation, churches, and volunteer EMS.

Take one visit to Preston and you will “get hooked on” the lifestyle Preston has to offer. Their Economic Development Board welcomes businesses. While the small town offers several necessities and businesses to support, it is an easy drive to Rochester MN or La Crosse WI. Preston is a Telecommuter-Friendly city, a designation given to communities that have committed to coordinating with broadband providers, realtors, employers, and others to promote the availably of telecommuting options. Love where you live, work where you live, keep it simple!


Here’s why people of the Preston community love where they live...

“Easy access to the Root River for fishing, and the trail for walking.”

“Working locally saves me so much time, no commute!” 

“Supporting my friends in their business adventures.” 

“The simplicity of it, less distractions. The further off the map the better.” 

“People know, care and support each other.”

“Tight knit community support.”



Posted by Roxanne Johnson on July 1st, 2021 1:08 PM

Harmony is known as “The Biggest Little Town in Southern Minnesota”, Harmony offers the perfect balance of community and convenience. The Harmony community is inviting and vibrant.

While Harmony supports all your daily needs it is also ideally location between larger towns including Rochester MN, La Crosse WI, and Decorah IA. With many employment opportunities as well as a progressive minded Economic Development Authority Board who offers a free service to entrepreneurs and can be supportive to you in starting your own business locally to support your lifestyle. Harmony has several active businesses from daily living needs to dining and entertainment. If you are unfamiliar with our small town here is a summary of businesses it has to offer, if you don’t see what you are looking for maybe there’s an opportunity waiting for you!

  1. Grocery Store, Mercantile
  2. Clinic, Drugstore, Senior Housing, Ambulance, Fire Department, and Helipad
  3. Floral Shop & Greenhouse, Home Décor & Retail, Clothing, Salon
  4. Restaurants, Liquor Store, Bar & Grill
  5. Automotive Repair, Gas Stations, Body Shop
  6. Bank, Attorneys Office, Post Office, Accountant, Investments, Insurance
  7. Movie Theatre, Library, Parks, Golf Course, Bike Trail, Niagara Cave, Splash Pad Coming Soon
  8. Kids Learning Center/Daycare, High School, Football & Baseball Fields

Harmony has something for everyone, regardless of age, as it is home to many community organizations for young and old alike with community events and celebrations; as well as various organizations for different interests such as garden club, historical society, a community foundation that has given over $400,000 back to the community, churches, trap club, and volunteer EMS. You are sure to find yourself at home in Harmony.

As “The biggest Little Town in Southern Minnesota” Harmony is known for its welcoming community spirit, where the quality of life never goes out of style. Southeast Minnesota is known for its freshwater stocked trout streams, miles of trails, as well as many recreational activities; Historic Bluff Country is an outdoor and nature lover’s paradise.


Here’s why people of the Harmony community love where they live...

“I enjoy walking down the street and seeing faces I know.”                            “Love the parks.”

“I love supporting people I know via small business.”                                       “The pace of life.” 

“Close community feel! Everyone supports each other!”                                  “Love having dining options.” 

“Community feel. People care about one another.”                                           “Great walking community.” 

“We enjoy the nice golf course & trails.”                                                             “Healthy lifestyle.” 

Posted by Roxanne Johnson on July 1st, 2021 1:08 PM

Should I list my property this winter? This year the season is quite different as the pandemic has limited social gatherings and events.  We find ourselves reassessing our living space and our day-to-day lifestyle. With a shortage of homes and pent-up demand, buyers are watching the market for new listings and are ready to make an offer when the property fits their lifestyle.  Wooded and Ag land are also in demand, as it has become a bit of a challenge for buyers to find a place to hunt, camp, or build their dream home.   You may have an ideal parcel to sell or split off that could give you the cash make improvements to your property, purchase a second home, or invest in other ways.

In November, the Dow Jones Industrial Average hit 30,000 and the interest rates hit another low, home prices have risen 15% and selling in an average of 45 days, according the SE Minnesota Association of Realtors MLS reporting.  The economic indicators support a positive market moving forward for sellers.  We find buyers are looking to take advantage of the low interest rates.   We are happy to visit with you about selling options available, the selling process, and guide you step by step along the way.   Call today for your free confidential consultation and put our experience to work for you!


Roxanne & Kelsey, RE/MAX Select Properties


Posted in:selling and tagged: selling
Posted by Roxanne Johnson on January 12th, 2021 1:40 PM

Do you want or need to move but you are struggling with the prices in today’s market? We understand there may be a bit of sticker shock for some, especially if you are comparing to certain years in the past. The real estate market is ever changing.

If you have sticker shock, we want to remind you of the historically low interest rates. If you currently own a home, buying a move up home can still be within your budget because of the low rates. Before you fixate on the asking price, look at the monthly payment. How does the payment with the low interest rate compare to the payment you have now?

For example...

Purchase Price



Mortgage Years



Interest Rate



Monthly Principle & Interest




Give us a call today to schedule a free buyers consultation, virtually or in person!

Roxanne & Kelsey


RE/MAX Select Properties            



These calculations were made using a mortgage calculator on, the information is not guaranteed, specific individual situations and lenders will vary.


These calculations were made using a mortgage calculator on, the information is not guaranteed, specific individual situations and lenders will vary.

Posted in:buying and tagged: buying
Posted by Roxanne Johnson on November 24th, 2020 4:44 PM

While we completely understand selling during COVID may feel like a big undertaking and you may be nervous about people coming and going from your home, we would like to ease some of your concerns.   We realize buyers may be concerned about entering homes and the precautions that need to be taken. We take the health and wellbeing of our clients seriously, and although navigating COVID has posed challenges for many of us, we have found ways to successfully assist our clients in making their move.

We discuss with our sellers their health concerns and implement safety precautions as we want you to be comfortable with buyers entering your home.  To minimize the transfer of germs we recommend a seller to have all the lights on, if possible, so there is no need for agents or buyers to touch your switches.  

We have successfully implemented the use of technology for many years and have increased virtual showings and the usage of electronic signing throughout this pandemic. Photos are available on several real estate websites and videos of our listings can be found on our Facebook page ( We are more than happy to conduct a Virtual Showing (real time or recorded) for you, as virtual showings have been an important tool.

We of course conduct in person showings, implementing the safety guidelines and maintaining social distancing guidelines.  Most importantly before bringing buyers into your home we have asked them questions related to possible exposure to COVID-19.  We have a supply of masks, gloves, and hand sanitizer in our vehicles for client use.

We feel it is important to take precautions and be practical during this time in respect of our clients and our own families.  If you have been thinking of making a move, we welcome the opportunity to visit with you about your concerns and assist you in making your move happen!

Roxanne & Kelsey

RE/MAX Select Properties


Posted in:buyingPosted in:sellingPosted in:covid and tagged: buyingsellingreal estatecovidpandemic
Posted by Roxanne Johnson on November 17th, 2020 10:01 AM

Roxanne Johnson, Broker, ABR, CRS, GRII. Licensed since 1994 and franchise owner of RE/MAX Select Properties.

AWARDS:  RE/MAX 100% Club, RE/MAX Platinum Club, RE/MAX Lifetime Achievement Award, Multi-Million Dollar Producer

In 25 years as a leader in Southeast Minnesota, Roxanne Johnson is dedicated to providing professional service to her clients, assisting hundreds of buyers and sellers make their move, putting their best interest as a top priority. Roxanne provides buyers and sellers with expert advice to guide them through the process for a successful closing and enjoyable process in the move. As a woman in business owning a boutique franchise office in a small town, Roxanne takes pride in providing personalized service and excellent exposure as a boutique franchise with one of the top leaders in the industry RE/MAX International. 

Roxanne grew up just south of the MN boarder near Decorah Iowa and moved to Harmony Minnesota marrying her high school sweetheart Bill Johnson. Bill and Roxanne raised their two children on the family farm in Harmony where Bill manages an All-Natural beef cow/calf operation with rotational crops taking pride in sustainable farming practices Roxanne enjoys time on the farmwalking the bike trial, time with children & grandchildren, photography and traveling. She serves as President of Harmony Area Community Foundation (non-profit), an organization that has been very instrumental in improving Harmony and creating resources for the residents. 

Roxanne & Kelsey have been recognized as one of the top 5% of RE/MAX agents in the state of Minnesota and top 50 team for transactions closed.  

Put their experience to work for you as the local experts you want on your side!

Posted by Roxanne Johnson on November 16th, 2020 9:41 AM

Kelsey Bergey- Realtor, GRI, - Licensed Real Estate Assistant and Transaction CoordinatorJoined RE/MAX Select Properties in 2011.

Kelsey joined the team in 2011 while attending Upper Iowa University, starting first as an assistant and quickly receiving her Minnesota Real Estate license allowing her to assist with everything from showing homes to closing the deal. Kelsey’s top priority is our clients, starting with the day a seller invites us into their home and the day a buyer decides it's time to start the search.   Kelsey coordinates showings, home inspections, appraisers, and closings and is a major asset to our team bringing her organization and communication skills to the table for smooth transactions and successful closings for our buyers and sellers.  

Kelsey is Harmony native, growing up on the family farm, where her family still farms today.  Kelsey married her high school sweetheart Josh Bergey who is employed at Preston Protein Products.  Kelsey and Josh keep busy with their little boy and enjoying experiences the area has to offer.  In her down time, Kelsey enjoys sipping a latte, having lunch with friends, and reading. 

Roxanne & Kelsey have been recognized as one of the top 5% of RE/MAX agents in the state of Minnesota and top 50 team for transactions closed.  

Put their experience to work for you as the local experts you want on your side!

Posted by Roxanne Johnson on November 16th, 2020 9:37 AM

Remember it’s time for a checkup when starting your homes heating. Having a professional clean and service your furnace is good practice for safety and efficiency. And lastly, remember to change your filter once a month. 

Roxanne & Kelsey, RE/MAX Select Properties 

Posted by Roxanne Johnson on January 27th, 2020 2:57 PM

A simple trip can spoil your day….

GFCI outlets are used to safeguard and trip off the electrical. GFCI is integrated in the outlet itself. When you plug in an appliance, such as a hair dryer, the GFCI outlet monitors the amount of power going to the device. If you accidentally drop the appliance into sink full of water, the GFCI detects the interruption in current and cuts the power...and possibly saves your life.

Do Not plug in your refrigerator or deep freeze to a GFCI outlet, should it trip the electrical current will be cut and power off your appliance, not only spoiling your day, but spoiling your food if not caught in time.

Roxanne & Kelsey, RE/MAX Select Properties

Posted by Roxanne Johnson on January 27th, 2020 2:55 PM

Are you thinking about selling your home? Here are 10 things to consider when preparing to sell your home.

  1. Updated to neutral paint colors - Yes a buyer will appreciate this!
  2. Update flooring that is worn and outdated.
  3. Clean woodwork & cabinets, touching up marks as needed. 
  4. Update hardware on cabinets.
  5. updated light fixtures as needed.
  6. Change lighting to LED white light to brighten your home. 
  7. Replace broken blinds and remove dated window coverings.
  8. Replace broken switch plats & outlet covers. 
  9. Clean sweep your basement and garage - Buyers want to see your storage space looking neat!
  10. Make your entry inviting inside and out. 

Of course some things are clean, retro and add a charming style to perhaps that is part of the appeal. We offer a free staging consultation in preparing to market your home for sale, helping you save money and time while addressing the items that matter.

Roxanne & Kelsey, RE/MAX Select Properties

Call us whether you're buying or selling, "Because Every Move Matters!"

Posted in:Seller and tagged: Seller
Posted by Roxanne Johnson on January 27th, 2020 2:45 PM

RE/MAX Select Properties

"Outstanding Agents, Outstanding Results!"

25 W. Center Street PO Box 425
Harmony, MN 55939