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Fun Things to do in the Boston Suburbs

wheesies garden resized 600Newcomers to the area often ask for suggestions of things to do in while they're checking out the Boston suburbs. Here are five fun & economical choices:

* Visit the Decordova Museum and Sculpture Park in Lincoln. Admission $12.00 adults, $8.00 kids 6-14. (Free for children five and under)

* Canoe or kayak along the Concord River. ($13.50-17.00/hour)

* Stroll through the gardens or walk along the Charles River at Elm Bank in Wellesley (free!) Wheesie's Garden is a wonderful place to bring the little ones.

* Bike along the scenic Minuteman Bikeway in Lexington.

* Check out the local paper for concerts on the common. Many of Boston's MetroWest communities, including Hopkinton and Natick, offer music on summer evenings.

Home Buyer Tips: Avoiding Move-in Angst

Boston suburbs home for saleKnowing what to expect when you purchase a home can help make the whole process smoother. Here are five steps to making your move a positive experience.

Call your utility providers. At least a week before you move, call the electric company and other utility providers so that they'll transition service from the previous owner on moving day.

Allow extra time for the movers. It's common for closings to be delayed from a few hours to a few days due to last minute title issues or other paperwork. If you have the time flexibility, you might want to book the movers for a day or two after closing day, just in case. It's incredibly frustrating to home buyers to have a moving truck waiting, only to find out the closing is delayed.

Schedule cleaners.
In general, home sellers are required to leave the house in "broom swept" condition when they move out. This does not mean it's sparkling clean. Many buyers prefer to schedule cleaners so the home looks spotless when you walk in the door.

Be prepared for last-minute expenses. Minor expenses often crop up at closing. For example, it's customary for home sellers to charge back the buyer for small items such as excess oil in the oil tank, or overpayments they've made on taxes, water, or sewer bills. Sometimes these fees are wrapped into the mortgage, and other times the buyer must write a check at closing.

Ask for copies of manuals, warranties, etc. Ask the sellers for documentation they may have for operating and maintaining systems in the home, such as central air, sprinkler systems, security systems, and more.

Feel free to contact me for more home buyer tips, or to start a home search in Boston's MetroWest suburbs. We'd be glad to be of assistance. My husband Kyle & I represent home buyers across many Boston suburbs, including Concord, Dover, Holliston, Hopkinton, Lincoln, Sherborn, Southborough, Sudbury, Wayland, Wellesley, Westborough, and Weston, among others.

Sherborn Joins in Bike Path Project

Sherborn bike path

Access to recreational activities helps to increase property values as well as community enjoyment. I'm thrilled that Sherborn, Holliston, Hopkinton, and surrounding communities will soon have a great new addition in this area.

The towns are working together to turn an abandoned rail bed into a 20-mile rail trail for biking, walking, cross-country skiing, roller blading, and other non-motorized uses. Milford has constructed its first phase of 3.5 miles and is currently under construction for its second phase that connects to the towns of Holliston and Hopkinton.

Please feel free to contact me to learn more about living in Sherborn, Holliston, Hopkinton, and surrounding communities or to start a home search in the Boston suburbs. I'd be glad to help!

[Photo courtesy of John Beagle]

Sherborn Maintains Rural Character

Sherborn daffodils

If you've ever driven through the bucolic community of Sherborn MA and wondered where all those pretty daffodils came from, it's the Sherborn Civic Beautification Fund. Each year, Sherborn residents contribute to the organization, who plants hundreds of daffodils along stonewalls and roadsides throughout the town.

It's just one of the small things I love about living in Sherborn.

Marketing Distinctive Homes in the Boston Suburbs

Dig In: Top Boston Picnic Spots

tower hill botanic garden resized 600Last week we had a fun picnic at the beautiful Tower Hill Botanical Garden to celebrate my amazingly talented friend Lauren's graduation from an intensive landscape gardening program.

If you're looking for the perfect place to have a summer picnic in the Boston area, has a terrific little guide to Boston's great picnic spots.

I invite you to contact me to learn more about living in the Boston area, or to start a home search. I'd be glad to be of assistance. My husband Kyle & I represent home buyers across many Boston suburbs, including Concord, Dover, Holliston, Hopkinton, Sherborn, Southborough, Sudbury, Wayland, Wellesley, Westborough, and Weston, among others.

[Photo courtesy of Flickr's Ms. Tea]

Home Seller Tip: Stage an Event

cocktails resized 600It may sound odd but after a day of home tours, I like to unwind by watching real estate shows like "Selling New York".

In last night's episode, a Sotheby's International Realty vice president noted "People are more apt to buy when they're relaxed." This is so true. That's why it's always fun to host a party or special event at our home listings. Potential buyers can visit in a truly relaxed atmosphere, enjoy a glass of wine and get a real "feel" for the home.

Plus they get to see how well it works as entertaining space. At that point, the home can really come to life.

Are Home Buyers Conspiracy Theorists?

Some days I wonder if home buyers are completely paranoid. There's the woman who was sure a home seller had textured the ceiling of their living room to hide cracks (although the 1970s textured ceiling had clearly been like that for decades), and the couple who thought a seller had piled furniture in their spare room to cover something up. (They hadn't. They were just out of space, hence the need to move to larger digs.)

Yes, I have seen home sellers try to pull one over on buyers, but thankfully I've been able to work with some terrific home inspectors, whose job it is to reveal such shenanigans.

After hearing skepticism time and again from buyers when they tour homes though, I would share this advice with anyone selling their home:

If you have repair issues, don't leave them half done. For example, if there was water damage that stained a ceiling, don't just stop the leak. Have the ceiling repaired so it looks like new. Otherwise buyers think the worst, and often rule a house out over such things.

Likewise, if you've had a repair issue, be transparent about it. You might have had a pest issue ten years ago but if you can show that you remedied the situation that will put most buyers at ease.

Every home needs repairs over time. Most buyers don't expect a home in perfect condition. They simply want to know that the seller maintained the home well. Being open about the home's history gives you an opportunity to demonstrate this.

Please contact me for more home selling tips. I'd be glad to be of assistance. My husband Kyle and I market homes across many Boston suburbs, including Dover, Holliston, Hopkinton, Lincoln, Sherborn, Southborough, Sudbury, Wayland, Wellesley, Westborough, and Weston, among others.

Guide to Summer Fun in New England

summer fun boston resized 600

New to the Boston area and looking for fun things to do for the whole family? Here's a handy guide to summer fun in New England -

[Photo courtesy of Cristeen Quezon]

Fun Tips for Boston Newcomers

boston insiders guide resized 600Moving to the Boston area? Here's a Boston Insider's Guide full of handy tips to experience this lovely little city like a local. Whether you're looking for water sports, arts & culture, LGBT events, shopping excursions, or eco-friendly activities, it's a great way to gain local knowledge about living in and around Boston.

Connect with other newcomers to the Boston area.
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