Posted by Peggy Farber on 10/11/2017

Great curb appeal isn't limited to houses that are on the market. Head turning curb appeal can make you feel good every time you drive in front of your house, pull into the driveway or step up the front walkway. House walkways that catch your eye as soon as you spot a house in the distance start with the material that house walkways are made of.

Material for great house walkways

Concrete isn't the only material that great house walkways are designed with. If you do go with concrete, check out different colored concrete walkways when you visit a house goods store or an exterior design shop. For example, if your house is burgundy red and white, you could install a burgundy red and white checkered concrete walkway. Other material that great house walkways are made with include:

  • Brick - The Wizard of Oz isn't the only place where brick walkways work wonders. As with concrete walkways, consider installing brick that's one or more colors that complement colors that your house is built with.
  • Rock - Smooth, rustic or lightly colored rocks made good walkways, especially if the smooth rocks are bordered by plants or flowers. You can also border this type of house walkway with one to two feet high rock walls.
  • Large stones that are built into cement or concrete won't pop into your shoes as you make your way in or out of your house. This is another time when fall colors like reds, greens and browns do wonders. Choose between three to five colors when picking large stones for your front walkway. Make sure that the stones are smooth and even, so people don't trip over them.
  • Gravel - Similar to rocks, you can get gravel indifferent colors, sizes and shapes. The downside of a gravel walkway is that the gravel can get inside your shoes.

Winding front walkways offer an elegant look, especially when they are bordered with gorgeous trees, bushes, flowers or plants. To encourage safety, keep bushes trimmed low so would be burglars can't hide behind them. Also, keep trees far enough away from your house to avoid turning trees into hiding places for would be intruders.

Ground lights that turn on at sunset or when someone starts to make their way up your front walk offer design and safety. Check out four or more outdoor walkway light designs to get more creative ideas on how you can get the walkway you want within a few days.

Don't stop at your walkway. Install wood floorboards and rustic furniture on your front porch to add even more curb appeal to your house. Colorful flowers, plants and uniquely designed ceramic or metal art pieces also bring out your front porch's best features.

Another simple move to great house walkways is to keep your walkways clutter free. Remove garbage pails from the sides of walkways. Return the lawn mower and other outdoor equipment to the basement or garage instead of leaving them on the lawn or next to front walkways.




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Posted by Peggy Farber on 10/4/2017

First time homeowners aren't the only people who are making this financial mistake. Millennials also aren't alone when it comes to approaching home ownership with short sight. Even the Great Recession hasn't stopped everyone who wants to own a house from thinking that they'll come out ahead if they wait until after they buy a house to starting putting money toward their mortgage.

Preparing to buy a house smartly could take years

Settling for making monthly mortgage payments, despite what the lender equates those payments to be, is a mistake. Negotiating for lower mortgage payments is only part of it.

The size of your mortgage down payment is significant. Don't wave this off. In fact, as soon as you become serious about buying a house start saving for your mortgage down payment.

Ways to save for your mortgage down payment include investing half (or more) of your quarterly or annual bonus toward your down payment and depositing your tax refund in an interest bearing account.

Money that you earn from a part-time job, including a virtual gig, could also go toward your mortgage down payment. Instead of tossing out clothes that you no longer wear, sell them to a consignment store and deposit the money into an interest bearing account.

Forward movement pays off

Keep saving  until you save at least 20 percent of the total cost of the house that you want to buy. Don't get fooled into thinking that there is only one house that you'll love. After all, you could buy land and have your dream house built on that land.

In addition to having the leverage to put a hefty down payment toward your mortgage, you'll have leverage to negotiate a better mortgage deal from your lender. You might even secure a mortgage with a lender who would never have approved you for a home loan if you didn't have a huge down payment.

Tax write offs may not be enough to subtract pain caused by this single mortgage regret

The government gives people tax deductions for owning a house for good reason. A house is probably the biggest expense that Americans will take on. Buying a house also helps the economy. It makes good sense to reward home buyers with a tax deduction.

But, even tax deductions may not help homeowners recoup the money that they'll lose by overpaying on their mortgage because of poor decisions that they made before they met with their lender. Poor home buying financial decisions could set Americans up for years of hard-to-make mortgage payments.

This single decision damages personal credit, destroys marriages and causes unsuspecting homeowners to lose their houses, sometimes years after struggling to pay their mortgage. Root of the single act that leads to years of mortgage regret is wishful thinking. The price of this wishful thinking is too high to want to take on. It leaves you unprepared.




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Posted by Peggy Farber on 10/2/2017

This Single-Family in Brewster, MA recently sold for $462,500. This Ranch style home was sold by Peggy Farber - oldCape Sothebyís International Realty.


15 Skipjack Way , Brewster, MA 02631

Brewster (village)

Single-Family

$479,000
Price
$462,500
Sale Price

5
Total Rooms
2
Beds
2
Baths
Sweet Cedar and vinyl Cape set on a very private acre lot in an area of fine homes in the heart of Brewster. Septic system designed for 3 bedrooms. (Septic inspected and passed) Gas heat, central air, newer architectural roof shingles, 2 decks, outside shower. Master Suite with sitting area. Easy distance to sandy beach at scenic Point of Rocks. Convenient to bike path, Brewster Fish House and all Brewster has to offer. Level private yard and attached garage.

Similar Properties





Categories: Sold Homes  


Posted by Peggy Farber on 9/29/2017

This Single-Family in Yarmouth, MA recently sold for $310,000. This Ranch style home was sold by Peggy Farber - oldCape Sothebyís International Realty.


21 Spinning Brook Road , Yarmouth, MA 02664

South Yarmouth

Single-Family

$310,000
Price
$310,000
Sale Price

5
Total Rooms
2
Beds
2
Baths
Beautifully renovated ranch on a spacious corner lot. Hardwood floors throughout, 2 full baths, wonderful kitchen with center island with a lovely 4 season room/den overlooking a private back yard and new composite deck. Truly move in condition.

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Categories: Sold Homes  


Posted by Peggy Farber on 9/27/2017

Owning a home is expensive. Aside from your mortgage, you also have to pay for insurance, utilities, property taxes... the list goes on.

It may seem like there are few ways to cut back on the expenses of owning a home. However, one of the most effective things you can do to save money as a homeowner is to do your own maintenance. The cost of home repairs can add up, especially if you live in an older home or in an area where services like plumbers and electricians arenít accessible or affordable.

With a little research and some hard work, however, maintaining your home can be a source of pride and of saving yourself money.

In this article, weíll cover the basic home maintenance and home improvement knowledge that will save you money, and point you in the direction of some resources that will help you attain those skills.

Maintenance is key

To increase the longevity of appliances like refrigerators, washers and dryers, youíll need to perform some mundane tasks regularly. That includes cleaning filters, fans, and going online to order new ones when necessary. In the same way that failing to change your oil filter will result in a much more expensive issue, so will failing to properly maintain your appliances.

In a world where companies are making it increasingly difficult for consumers to repair their own devices, itís more important than ever to learn the basic skills needed to make simple repairs.

What you should do before repairing anything

There are some precautions you should take before repairing or maintaining things like appliances. First, always be sure the item is turned off and unplugged before working with its components.

Next, refer to the manual first, but if that fails, search for tutorials online such as on YouTube for your particular model. Always keep in mind that sometimes warranties are void if you attempt repairs yourself,  so make sure the repair youíre attempting is easy enough so that you donít risk losing your warranty.

The right tools for the job

It might be tempting to go down to The Home Depot and fill a cart with power tools when you buy your first home. Remember, however, that certain tools are more useful than others. Find out which tools youíll be using most often. Odds are theyíre simple, inexpensive hand tools that will fit in a small toolbox. Some power tools, such as a cordless drill, will probably be worth the investment as long as you take care of the batteries.

Donít throw out good materials

Ample storage space is a problem many homeowners face. But if you can spare the space, hold onto materials from previous projects that might come in handy. Some examples include:

  • Paint. You donít want to have to go back to the store and mix a new can of paint just for a touch-up.

  • Nails and screws that come with your purchases. Sometimes the screws are designed specifically for whatever youíre building. Save your backups so you donít have to buy a new bag if one is lost.

  • Wood. Having extra wood around can come in handy for any number of home improvement projects.




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