House Hunting

Did you have April showers? Check out those downspouts and gutters

Why do we have downspouts and gutters? Partly, we have them so that when we step out of the house we don’t get gallons of rainwater on our heads. We also have them so that the downspouts can channel water away from the foundation of the house. Houses that are set on large tracts of

By |2019-04-17T12:43:28-04:00May 1st, 2019|Categories: Happy Home Ownership, House Hunting|Tags: , , , |

Data You Need to Know, Data You Should Ignore

More data is not better data. I advise my clients to look for indications of negotiation points, like comparable sales, the seller buying another property, and neighborhood issues that are chasing the seller from their property (this is common if a building project is nearby or the taxes just went up… that kind of thing.)

By |2019-03-20T11:54:30-04:00March 27th, 2019|Categories: buying process, House Hunting, Market data and conditions|

Cars and Houses

Households with no cars were rare in 1996. Even among people who commuted to work solely by mass transit or bicycle, there was a car. When the house next door to me went up for sale in 1996, my new neighbor was a man in his 30s who did not have a driver’s license. He

By |2018-05-06T12:44:37-04:00May 16th, 2018|Categories: House Hunting, Market data and conditions|

How Old is That Roof?

When you look at a roof, can you see the difference between an old one and a new one? We can! Let us give you a couple of tips. Asphalt and fiberglass-asphalt shingle are the most common roofing materials you will see in this area. They are built with a dark underside covered with granules

By |2018-04-24T14:23:26-04:00May 9th, 2018|Categories: House Hunting, Problems and repair|Tags: |

What stays, what goes, when you sell a house?

If I incorporate my art into my house, should I remove it before I sell? My clients, T. and E. are selling their house. They are leaving two stained glass pieces that T. made. They are also leaving a wallet holder that T.’s father made. He is attached to it, but it “belongs” in that

Seller’s market: Signs that it will end

We’ve been in a seller’s market – where there is more demand than supply – since spring of 2012. It takes a while to get perspective on a market that is changing. To figure out when price inflation began to pick up again, I looked back on my blogs. I found this one, from February

Heating systems and energy efficiency

What should an energy conscious house hunter be looking for, when choosing a house or condo? It’s a good idea to have this in mind all year, but more people notice this time of year. With our clients, we point out our energy wasters when we see them. Single zones: If there is only one

By |2017-09-26T11:30:57-04:00September 27th, 2017|Categories: Energy efficiency, House Hunting|Tags: , , , |

What is WRONG with those listing agents?

Buyer tip: A badly done listing sheet can save you money. Many buyers will reject a place based on bad pictures, or not enough pictures.  Some agents don't do their job. There's plenty of them. Enough to fill humor sites like Lighter Side of Real Estate, Bad MLS photos, Hooked on Houses, Terrible real estate photography,  Even

By |2017-11-28T21:39:24-04:00September 20th, 2017|Categories: House Hunting, Negotiating, thinking of selling?|Tags: , , |

$3000 towards knob and tube removal

Some electrical repair can’t wait. Knob and tube wiring is one of those problems. This wiring, from 80-100 years ago, has not aged gracefully. It is considered a fire hazard by most insurance companies. Our clients are often told that they cannot get insurance, or they can only get insurance if they promise to remove

Can’t sell because you can’t buy?

The big issue in Boston area real estate is inventory. There are not enough houses for sale. We have a stalemate about inventory here. These are the factors: Empty-nesters are staying longer in their houses. This is a demographic and cultural shift. They are holding on to their houses, partly because of personal choices and