Friday, December 8, 2017

Habits to Make Dream of Lexington Homeownership a Reality

Healthy habits for Lexington homebuyers
Do you dream of buying a Lexington home in 2018? Are you ready to stop throwing your money away on rent and invest in your future? Home prices and mortgage rates are expected to increase in 2018, so the sooner you buy, the more you might save in the Lexington real estate market!

As your Lexington real estate agent, I am here to help guide you through the first-time buying process, and to answer any questions you may have. Even if you don’t plan to buy for another few months, there are habits you can start to implement now to better your chances at qualifying for a loan and a low interest rate! Here are the top three that realtor.com just shared:

1.  Automate down payment savings. Saving enough money for a down payment is one of the hardest steps for first-time buyers, but the more you put down initially, the lower your monthly payments could be. Automate your checking account to save a certain amount of your paycheck each month into a down payment savings account. If you receive any monetary gifts, put them right in the account as well.

2.  Build your credit history. Keep your credit history clean by paying off or paying down past debts, paying all of your bills on time, and using no more than 30 percent of the credit available to you. Have bills automatically withdrawn to make paying on time easier.

3.  Practice living on a budget. Downsize your spending so you can save more for a down payment and pay off your debts. Don’t by new clothes, cars, vacations, etc. until after you buy your home. Make coffee and your meals at home instead of buying it out. Walk or bike instead of driving when possible.

There are all great tips on getting you on your way to saving the money you need for a home in the Lexington real estate market! Enjoy your holidays, and when ready to buy a Lexington home this year or next, contact me, your Lexington real estate agent. I am here for you!

Theresa D'Antuono

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Lexington Tea Burning, Demonstrations, Parade, and More!

Lexington Tea Burning, Demonstrations,
Parade, and More!


Three days before the Boston Tea Party in 1773, citizens of Lexington burned all their tea in a common bonfire, and issued a stirring resolution supporting the people of Boston, announcing that anyone in town who used tea would be treated “as an enemy of this town and this country.”

Lexington Historical Society and the Lexington Minute Men invite all to the Lexington Tea Burning. The event will take place on the grounds of another sponsor of the event, the Lexington Visitor’s Center (1875 Massachusetts Avenue) and will begin at 10AM with an 18th century soldier encampment, followed by musket drills, 18th century cooking demonstrations, parades, and music, and culminate with the burning of the tea at 1:30PM.


Historic Buckman Tavern will be decorated for the holidays and open for FREE tours.

Sunday, December 10, 2017 - 10:00am
Lexington Visitors Center lawn
1875 Massachusetts Avenue

Lexington, MA 02420

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Your Complete Holiday Season Planner

Yes, it’s that time of year already. Thanksgiving is over, and Hanukkah, Christmas, Kwanzaa and New Year’s will be here before you know it. You may have already booked holiday flights or started buying a few Christmas gifts. Now it’s time to get going in earnest on holiday preparations. Our holiday season planner will help you stay on top of everything so you can enjoy this special time of year.

  • Book travel. Decide where you and your family will be for Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas and New Year’s. If you’re going to be traveling but haven’t yet made arrangements, take care of them now, reserving plane tickets, lodging, car rentals and restaurant tables. If you’re eating out locally on a holiday, you’ll also want to reserve a table in advance.
  • Make plans for your pets. If your “fur children” won’t be traveling with you, or they don’t do well with a house full of guests, contact a pet sitter or boarding facility to reserve a spot.
  • Mark your calendar. Note dates of holiday parties, concerts and programs you plan to attend at your children’s schools, your church, your workplaces and your social clubs. Plan out any parties you plan to give. And add other favorite holiday events, such as Christmas craft fairs, a Nutcracker ballet performance, a Handel’s Messiah singalong concert or a designer show house.
  • Save the date. Are you planning to host Hanukkah, Christmas, Kwanzaa or a New Year’s party? Write up invitation lists and contact people you hope will attend.
  • Write out your gift lists. Set your holiday gift budget. Create a list of everyone you want to buy or make gifts for. Collect your family members’ Christmas wish lists and distribute to relatives who need shopping ideas.
  • Extend a hand. Do you take on any special volunteer duties or do any charitable giving during the holiday season? Consider contacting a soup kitchen or shelter to see how you can contribute to people in need.
  • Share the news. Update your holiday card mailing or email list. Choose or set up a family photo for your holiday card or newsletter. Order or buy Christmas cards. If you send out a holiday newsletter, start writing up the highlights of your or your family’s year.
  • Organize your gift wrap. Take an inventory of your gift-wrapping supplies. Buy or make gift wrap, ribbons and bags.
  • Get an early start. Hit the stores now to take advantage of sales and beat the crowds. To save time later (and prevent the curious from uncovering gifts), wrap presents as you go.
  • Be a good guest. Make or buy host gifts to take to holiday gatherings.
For the complete list please visit: Houzz



Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Shop Lexington this Holiday Season




Small Business Saturday is November 25. Shop Local and keep your dollars in our community.
Avoid the malls and see what great variety you'll find in our stores. Many local business are participating so look for specials deals and discounts. Restaurants too!



And don't forget Holiday Lighting with Santa on Friday November 24  starting at 6:00pm. Come watch as Santa rides a fire truck into Depot Square to turn on Lexington Center's holiday lights.
Singing and refreshments in Emery Park.







Kids Arts and Crafts Party at the Depot!

Saturday, November 28
11AM-3PM
Drop in with your kids for a few minutes or a few hours of FREE fun.
Organized by ArtSpan, kids can roll-up their sleeves and create a holiday memory, relax and be entertained, and of course take a picture with Frosty the Snowman.
Entertainment includes
11:00
children's story telling
11:30
Jane Sutton, children's book author, reading from her book Esther's Hanukkah Disaster
noon
The Lexington Players performing songs from their upcoming performance of A Charlie Brown Christmas
1:00
music by Lexington High School musicians



For more information about these events please visit: http://www.shoplexingtonfirst.com/index.html 




Wednesday, November 15, 2017

November Events with the Lexington Historical Society

Cronin Lecture by Thomas Oliphant

Friday, November 17, 7:30 PM, Brookhaven at Lexington

Celebrate the John F. Kennedy centennial with a talk by journalist Thomas Oliphant on his book The Road to Camelot: Inside JFK’s Five-Year Campaign, written with Curtis Wilkie. Doris Kearns Goodwin calls it an “endlessly riveting story that captures the reader every step along the way.”

Free and open to the public!


Holiday Antique, Vintage, and Decorative Arts Show

Sunday November 19, 10 AM – 4 PM, Lexington High School

Find a unique holiday gift from one of dozens of high-quality vendors selling jewelry, pottery, books, artwork, and more! Managed by Marvin Getman, New England Antique Shows.

Admission $5, under 12 free with adult.




NOVEMBER HISTORIC HOUSE TOURS

Buckman Tavern open for self-paced audio tours every day of the week, 9:30 am - 4:00 pm until November 25.

Munroe Tavern open for self-guided tours on November 24 and 25, 12:00 pm - 4:00 pm.

​Hancock-Clarke House open for guided tours November 24 and 25, 10:00 am - 4:00 pm.



Wednesday, November 8, 2017

How Lexington MA Homebuyers Can Improve Credit Score


Are you ready to buy a Lexington MA home this fall? The holiday season is upon us, but the Lexington real estate market never stops! If you want to buy before the end of the year, now is the time to contact me, your Lexington real estate agent.

The good news is that buying a home in the off-season could save you thousands of dollars! According to a report from RISMedia, sale prices in the off-season fall an average of approximately 3 percent from September through November, which is $8,300 for an average-priced home.

The first step in the home-buying process should be to check your credit score. While a FICO score of 750 or higher is ideal, 53 percent of loans were approved with a score under 750 last month. 

Of course, the higher your credit score, the better. Here are a few tips if you’d like to improve your score before buying:
  • Make all of your payments on time. This includes rent, credit cards, car loans and so on. If possible, set up automatic payments for your bills so that you don’t have the chance of paying late.
  • Keep credit card spending to no more than 30 percent of your limit and continue to pay off your cards each month.
  • Check for errors on your credit reports, and if you find any, work on getting them fixed. This happens more often that you’d think!
  • Shop around for mortgage rates, but do so within a 30-day period, as too many spread-out inquiries can lower your score.
If you’ve got questions about the home-buying process, or you’re ready to get started, contact me, your Lexington real estate agent! I will be here and ready to help you achieve your Lexington real estate market goals throughout this fall and winter seasons.

Theresa D'Antuono

The 22nd Annual Trivia Bee


Come and cheer on your school teams!
This is a free event for the Lexington community. 


It is going to be held on Thursday, November 9th, 7pm at Lexington High School Auditorium.


Master of Ceremonies - Jeff Leonard
Guest Judge - LHS Principal Stephens
All are Welcome!

Trivia question submitted by You!


Lexington Education Foundation brings the community together to build and sustain the excellence of the Lexington Public Schools through funding innovations in teaching and learning in all nine schools.


Tuesday, October 31, 2017

10 Halloween Tips to Keep Your Pets Safe

Halloween can be a festive and fun time for children and families. But for pets? Let's face it, it can be a nightmare. Skip the stress and keep your pets safe this year by following these 10 easy tips.

1. Trick-or-treat candies are not for pets.
All forms of chocolate—especially baking or dark chocolate—can be dangerous, even lethal, for dogs and cats. Symptoms of chocolate poisoning may include vomiting, diarrhea, rapid breathing, increased heart rate, and seizures. Halloween candies containing the artificial sweetener xylitol can also be poisonous to dogs. Even small amounts of xylitol can cause a sudden drop in blood sugar and subsequent loss of coordination and seizures. “Xylitol ingestion can also cause liver failure in dogs, even if they don’t develop symptoms associated with low blood sugar,” adds Dr. Jennifer Coates, veterinary advisor with petMD. And while xylitol toxicity in cats has yet to be established, it's better to be safe than sorry.

2. Don't leave pets out in the yard on Halloween.
Vicious pranksters have been known to tease, injure, steal, and even kill pets on Halloween night. Inexcusable? Yes! But preventable nonetheless. Black cats are especially at risk from pranks or other cruelty-related incidents. In fact, many shelters do not adopt out black cats during the month of October as a safety precaution. Make sure your black cats are safely housed indoors around Halloween. 

3. Keep pets confined and away from the door.
Indoors is certainly better than outdoors on Halloween, but your door will be constantly opening and closing, and strangers will be on your doorstep dressed in unusual costumes. This, of course, can be scary for our furry friends, which can result in escape attempts or unexpected aggression. Putting your dog or cat in a secure crate or room away from the front door will reduce stress and prevent them from darting outside into the night…a night when no one wants to be searching for a lost loved one.

4. Keep glow sticks away from pets.
While glow sticks can help keep people safe on Halloween night, they can add some unwanted drama to the holiday if a pet chews one open. “Thankfully, the liquid inside glow sticks is non-toxic, so it won’t actually make pets sick,” Coates says, “but it does taste awful.” Pets who get into a glow stick may drool, paw at their mouth, become agitated, and sometimes even vomit. Coates recommends that if your pet does chew on a glow stick, “offer some fresh water or a small meal to help clear the material out of the mouth.”

5. Keep Halloween plants such as pumpkins and corn out of reach.
While small amounts of corn and pumpkin can be fed safely to many pets, ingesting uncooked, potentially moldy Halloween pumpkins or corn displays can cause big problems. Gastrointestinal upset is a possibility whenever pets eat something they aren’t used to, and intestinal blockage can occur if large pieces are swallowed. Coates adds that “some types of mold produce mycotoxins that can cause neurologic problems in dogs and cats.” So, keep the pumpkins and corn stalks away from your pets. And speaking of pumpkins…


6. Don't keep lit pumpkins around pets.

If you are using candles to light your jack-o-lanterns or other Halloween decorations, make sure to place them well out of reach of your pets. Should they get too close, they run the risk of burning themselves or causing a fire.

7. Keep electric and battery-powered Halloween decorations out of reach.

Electric and battery-powered Halloween decorations are certainly safer than open candles, but they still can present a risk to pets. Pets who chew on electrical cords can receive a possibly life-threatening electrical shock or burn. Batteries may cause chemical burns when chewed open or blockage if swallowed. Shards of glass or plastic can cause lacerations anywhere on the body or, if swallowed, within the gastrointestinal tract.

8. Don't dress your pet in a costume unless you know they'll love it.

If you do decide that Fido or Kitty needs a costume, make sure it isn't dangerous or simply annoying to your pet. Costumes should not restrict movement, hearing, eyesight, or the ability to breathe. Coates warns that pets who are wearing a costume should always be supervised by a responsible adult so that if something goes wrong, it can be addressed right away.

9. Try on pet costumes before the big night.

Don’t wait until Halloween night to put your pet in a costume for the first time. “Any time you want to introduce your pet to something new, it’s best to go slowly,” Coates says. Get your pet costumes early, and put them on for short periods of time (and piece by piece, if possible). “Make it a positive experience by offering lots of praise and treats,” Coates adds. If at any time, your pet seems distressed or develops skin problems from contact with a costume, consider letting him go in his “birthday suit.” A festive bandana may be a good compromise.

10. IDs, please!

If your dog or cat should escape and become lost, having the proper identification will increase the chances that he or she will be returned. Collars and tags are ideal if a Good Samaritan is able to collect your wayward pet, but microchips offer permanent identification should the collar or tag fall off. Just make sure the information is up-to-date. Use Halloween as a yearly reminder to double check your address and phone number on tags and with the company who supports pet microchips.



Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Halloween 2017 in Lexington


The Lexington Retailer's Association will once again be sponsoring its annual Trick or Treat with local businesses. Participating Lexington stores and businesses will welcome trick-or-treaters between 2 and 5 pm on Tuesday, October 31.


  • Dress for the occasion. 
  • Treats are only given to kids in costume.
  • Look for the Orange/Black/White balloon bouquets at the door of our participating local businesses.
  • Say Trick or Treat!

Open to all Children Up to Age 10 or Grade 5. The event will be held rain or shine. For more information, see the association's Website

New! Haunted House at Pinot's Palette (Basement), 7 Meriam Street (781) 862-3200

 Meanwhile, LexFUN will once again hold its annual Halloween Parade on Saturday, October 28. The parade starts at 10 am and follows a route around the Lexington battle Green to give the town's youngest residents to show off their Halloween costumes. For more on the parade, see the event page on Facebook.

Halloween safety tips:
  • Trick-or-Treaters and Parents
  • Wear a costume that makes it easy for you to walk, see and be seen.
  • An adult should always accompany smaller children. It’s best to take them out earlier in the evening.
  • Carry a flashlight and make sure that some sort of reflective material or the popular glow light stick are incorporated into all costumes
  • Establish ground rules with children that are too old to be accompanied by an adult. Such rules could include: what neighborhoods to go to, staying in a group, what time they must come home, and appropriate behavior while trick-or-treating. Have them bring a cell phone in case of emergencies.
  • Always use sidewalks when available. If there are no sidewalks, walk facing traffic.
  • Never dart out between parked cars. Always cross at the corners or at crosswalks.
  • An outside light on at the front of the house is usually a sign that trick-or-treaters are welcome. Avoid going to houses that are not lit. Never enter any home unless it’s a family member or a friend.
  • Allow an adult to inspect all treats prior to eating them. Throw out any treats that appear tampered with. Do not allow homemade treats to be eaten unless you are sure of the source.
  • Limit electronic device use while walking as it causes distractions.


Tips for Motorists
  • Be aware that there are many young children out for the evening, especially during the peak hours of 5:30 to 7 p.m. Drive Slowly!
  • Be aware that young trick-or-treaters may dart out from between parked cars.
  • Do not drive a vehicle while wearing any sort of mask. Your visibility could be obscured.
  • Obey all traffic signals and signs.
  • DO NOT use electronic devices.
  • Have a designated driver if attending an adult Halloween party where alcohol is served.




Wednesday, October 18, 2017

GHOSTS & GRAVES OF LEXINGTON


Ghosts and Graves of Lexington, Saturday, October 28 at 6:00pm, Lexington Depot.

Candlelit tour of the Old Burying Ground and Buckman Tavern. Departure from the Lexington Depot. Our Colonial ancestors will tell tales of what brought them to the grave.
Suitable for ages 5 and up.

Members: $8 adults/$5 children; Non-members: $10 adults/$6 children. Advance tickets available online through Friday, October 27 www.lexingtonhistory.org or – if available - at the door.

For more information and other upcoming events please visit Lexington Historical Society