Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Lexington Backyards Make a Big Impression

You only get one chance to make a first impression. When buyers are looking at a home for sale in Lexington MA, they will usually know almost instantly whether they like it or not.  Make sure that by the time they view your back yard, they get the same great first impression as they did when they saw the inside of your home.  This is especially important during summer months, when buyers will be thinking about barbecues and children playing. The back yard almost becomes the more important first impression.

Here are a few tips to make a good first backyard impression. Keep pools or hot tubs clean and clear.  Fertilizer and watering will bring back deep green color to lawns.  Mow and edge your lawn frequently.  Cut back or even remove overgrown shrubs to show more of the exterior of your home.  It will look more tidy and also makes the yard look bigger.  Fix or replace broken fences, try painting or staining wood fences for a quick and easy update.  Make sure all latches and hinges are in good working order. Remove or hide unnecessary items such as lawnmowers and pool supplies. Remove outdated play sets or give them a good scrubbing if in good shape. Pick up pet "droppings" more often and if you have a dog house, make sure to give that a good cleaning too!  Consider planting a few annuals to add some instant color to your backyard.  Clean or paint patio furniture and strategically place it to create comfortable seating areas. Don't forget to add accessories, try potted plants, colorful and comfortable seat cushions, lamps and more to create an inviting outdoor space.

In short, do everything you can to make your back yard look as inviting and large as possible.  It could mean the difference between an enthusiastic buyer or one that moves on to the next great backyard.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Discovery Day in Lexington MA

Lexington will celebrate the beginning of summer at the 33rd annual Discovery Day on Saturday, May 26.

Sponsored by the Lexington Retailers Association and hosted by more than 90 local businesses and civic organizations, the annual event invites residents and non-residents to “discover” what Lexington has to offer. The festivities begin with a street fair and sidewalk sale from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Muzzey Street/Waltham Street municipal parking lot behind Michelson’s Shoes, and conclude with a free outdoor concert by Beatles cover band the “Nowheremen” at 3:30 p.m. in Depot Square. The rain date is June 2.

Lexington retailers will be ready for the crowds with plenty of great merchandise and giveaways, and local restaurants will be selling a variety of tasty food. Many Lexington civic groups and town departments will also be participating. There will be fun and games for children, as well as live entertainment for all ages.
Visitors to the Lexington Minuteman booth can get their picture on a mock front page, meet editor Ben Aaronson and our new reporter Hannah McGoldrick, and get all sorts of information about the paper.
Throughout the day, there will be drawings for prizes donated by local merchants. Prize coupons can be printed from discoverydayinlexington.com.
Free Lexpress rides will be provided to help alleviate traffic around the center and to give new riders a chance to try out the bus service. Lexpress will operate special Saturday hours from the 10 a.m. routes through the 4 p.m. routes. The regular fare will be charged for those going to and from Burlington.
For those driving, there will be free parking at all Lexington Center parking meters and in the Meriam Street lot.
Discovery Day is made possible with the additional financial support of the following businesses: Crafty Yankee, Grant Cole Realtors, Keith Asarkof DMD and Associates, Ride Studio Café, J.P. Carroll Co. and Fitness Together.
For more information, visit discoverydayinlexington.com or call Richard Michelson of the Lexington Retailers Association at 781-862-1034.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Lexington Community Center Task Force Survey

For many years, Lexington, MA officials and residents have studied and considered whether to build a new senior center and create a teen center.  Now Lexington has decided to change its focus from those individualized solutions to investigate a more general approach to serving the needs of all of Lexington's citizens: a community center.

Last summer the Board of Selectmen appointed the Community Center Task Force to develop "...a report about the concept of a community center, including recommendations, to serve the intellectual, physical, and social needs of seniors, other adults, teens and youth in our community."

The task force has visited centers in other towns, talked to leaders of groups, departments and boards in Lexington.  From this work we have created one vision of how a Lexington community center could be a place where seniors, teens, toddlers, infants, families, and groups of all kinds would find something for them.

The committee has been persuaded of the value that a community center could bring to our town. Now we want to know if a community center would be of value to you.

Take the Survey Now. Available until June 30.

Theresa D'Antuono

Monday, May 14, 2012

Reasons to Buy a Lexington Home Now!

Thanks for taking the time to stop by my blog!  If you’re here, chances are you’re interested in buying a Lexington home.  Whether you’re relocating to this historic Massachusetts city, or you’re ready to buy the home of your dreams in Lexington; you may have questions about the current Lexington Real Estate market.
As a Lexington Real Estate agent, I know that buying a home can seem like an overwhelming process.  Yet, finding a trusted real estate agent who knows the area and can walk with you through each step will help everything run smoothly.  Buying a home can be a stress free process, and you’ll find that now is actually a great time to buy!
Record low interest rates and a wide variety of reasonably priced homes currently on the Lexington Real Estate market are just a few of the main reasons to buy now.  Recently, Quicken Loans pointed out five additional reasons why now is a great time to buy, which I think will help you in taking the next step.
Appreciation- Buying a Lexington home now (at the current rates) can almost ensure your home’s appreciation in the future.  Mortgage rates are near historic lows and home prices are the lowest the nation has seen in 10 years!  If you hold on to the home until after the market improves, this can result in a significant return on investment!
Property Tax Deductions- For income tax purposes, real estate property taxes for a vacation home and first home are fully deductible.  The IRS (Publication 530) provides detailed tax information on and answers questions on what deductions for which home owners are eligible. 
Preferential Tax Treatment- If you own your home for over a year and receive more profit than the allowable exclusion after the sale of your home, the profit will be considered a capital asset, which are given preferential tax treatment. 
Equity Building- There are many factors that play into the final decision of which mortgage loan works best for you such as credit qualification, loan flexibility and annual percentage rate (APR).  However, there’s a new trend towards equity building among today’s buyers which means paying more on a loan each month in order to decrease the principle balance more quickly.  This trend, called equity building, allows borrowers to:
- Pay off the principle balance faster
- Lock in record low interest rates
- Shorten the length of their home loan
- Own their home faster
- Pay substantially less mortgage interest
Pride- This aspect is still key when it comes to the benefits of owning your own home.  Going through the home buying process, building value into your home and having a place to call your own is still a thriving portion of the American dream. 
I hope that as you consider buying a home in Lexington; you’ll find this information helpful!  Of course, I’m always here to answer any questions you have about buying a home or the Lexington Real Estate market.
Please feel free to contact me today!  I’d enjoy the opportunity to help you find your home in Lexington!

Theresa D'Antuono

Friday, May 11, 2012

Did You Know? Facts About Real Estate

Buying and Selling Real Estate in Lexington MA can be confusing and just plain overwhelming.  I love working with informed clients.  I find that our transactions go much more smoothly when we all understand the process and we're all on the same page.  Here are just a few facts about real estate that you might not be aware of it.

  • Did you know that one of the major reasons homes don't sell is because potential buyers can't see themselves in the home?  Try staging your home to be as generic as possible.
  • Did you know that when selling a home, some closing costs can be negotiated as part of the contract? A Real Estate Agent can guide you to the best option for your situation.
  • Not all home improvements add value to your home.  In fact, some "improvements" actually detract from the overall value of the property. Check with your Real Estate before making any major home improvements.
  • Did you know that a 20% down payment is not always a requirement for a home mortgage?  There are numerous loan programs that allow buyers to get a loan for less that 20%. I an help you find one of those programs.
  • Did you know that all of the interest you pay toward your home mortgage is tax deductible? That means you could pay less for your home then you are currently paying for rent in Lexington MA.
  • Most lenders require a title insurance policy on the property?  Lenders require this to protect their investment in your loan. I work with several companies that can facilitate this requirement.

Lexington MA Real Estate Agent

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Quick Tips to an Uncluttered Lexington Home

Is your Lexington MA home cluttered, unorganized and overwhelming you? Here are some simple tips to tackle it once and for all.

Step 1: Create an organizational plan that works for your family. Think about how you really use each room in the house. Consider your highest traffic areas such as mudrooms and hallways.
Step 2: Focus on the reason you need to reorganize, such as creating a clutter-free area for family gatherings or cleaning out a guest room so there's space for visitors. This will help keep you focused and motivated.

Step 3: Then go room by room, decide what you would like to specifically accomplish in each. Visually break the room into small areas that you can tackle in increments. Set achievable deadlines to give yourself a goal to work toward.

Step 4: Make a list of what stays and what could go to reduce clutter. Consider re-purposing items to other rooms that may be more suitable. Consider bringing in pieces that are multi-functional.

Step 5: Once you have a game plan and your list. Schedule time when you're most energetic and least likely to be distracted. Set a timer and quit when the timer rings. Make sure the whole family is envolved.

Step 6: Once the rooms are complete plan to keep it that way. Schedule 15 to 30 minutes of daily catch-up time to go room by room for a quick fix. Knowing that an end is in sight will make it easier for you to get going. Multi-task! Time will pass more quickly if you complete the task while watching TV, listening to music, or conversing on the phone or in person. Involve your children, play a game to see how quickly you can pick up a room together. This is the perfect learning opportunity to show how much can be accomplished with teamwork.

Step 7: Place decorative baskets, bowls or boxes in high traffic areas that become the “drop-spot” for items that don’t belong in the room. Then once a week, simply pick up the collection instrument and walk through the house returning items to their rightful location. This saves lots of back and forth.

Step 8: Discuss with your family your new organizational objectives and your expectations. Clearly define their rolls and responsibilities as a member of the family living in the home. Keeping all family members included and involved with help increase the chances of an uncluttered home.

Step9: Consider rewards. Post a to-do list with time frames, include family rewards with each. For example, at the end of the month, if there aren’t a pile of shoes by the backdoor, go out for dinner. Have fun with it and the whole family will be on board.