More on painting paneling…

I have not written about painting paneling in a long time.

I recently saw this picture on the House Beautiful blog…

painting paneling dark blue


The caption next to the picture said, “Painting the paneled walls and cabinets of the library deep blue gave a sliver of a room impact.”

Impact…that’s an understatement!

Who knew paneling could look that good.

For other posts on paneling, check here, here, here, here and here.


Image: House Beautiful

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Little things that make a BIG difference – a moveable wall of plants

I am always looking for ideas to transform space on the cheap.

I find that when sellers are selling, the last thing they want to do is spend money transforming their house to make it look better for resale.

Sure they may paint or update some fixtures, but anything more than that can be a real chore.

I think the theory is, “Why put money in when I won’t be staying to enjoy it?”

I get that, I really do.

As Realtor, I love it when I can recommend a space improvement at little-to-no expense for sellers.

Recently, I ran across this picture…



It’s a moveable wall of plants!

I immediately thought this could have practical application for any seller who needs to block a less-than-desirable view or needs to create more privacy. Something like this could have several applications, if need be. It would allow a seller to create a very private and lush outdoor space instantly.

Also, once the house sells, the seller should be able to take the container and the plantings with them once they leave (provided their Realtor makes note of it in their listing.)

Something such as a moveable wall of plants could make a huge difference in a buyer’s perception of outdoor space!


Image: Southern Living


Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Happy Memorial Day!

Many thanks to those who serve and have served.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Weekly Home Sales Snapshot – 5/22/15

Source: Greater Fairfield County CMLS,  HOUSES Sold = Single Family, Multi-Family, Condo/Co-Op


Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Does your house require flood insurance? Maybe not!

waterviewRecently, I have been running into several properties that require flood insurance, but have very clearly never flooded.

How does that happen?

Well, a few years ago after Super-storm Sandy, FEMA reconsidered its flood maps and where they felt new flooding might be possible. So, they redrew some of their maps to include areas that may have not been considered before.

As an example, I have a client selling a house her family lived in for years. This house backs up to a nature preserve which has a very large pond and wetland area. While it makes for a beautiful, bucolic vista from the back patio, FEMA also felt it might be a “floodable” area.

When I went to list the house, I asked my client if the house required flood insurance. She was completely shocked by the question and responded that there had never been a drop of water in the house. When I explained it had very little to do with the house actually being flooded, but more with the fact that house sat in a flood zone, she was stupefied.

Sure enough, as it turns out, when FEMA redrew all the maps a couple of years ago, her house got swept up onto a flood zone and any new owner would be required to carry flood insurance. As I am sure you can imagine, that is the kiss of death for a house being sold. No buyer wants the added expense of flood insurance!

When it comes to flood insurance, most people understand it if they have far reaching, stunning views of water. It’s sort of the price you pay for the view, if you will.

BUT, when you have no view of water and your house has NEVER flooded, flood insurance can feel like a very unfair waste of money!

So, what can you do?

Well, what my homeowner did was file for a Letter of Map Amendment or a  LOMA.

In a nutshell, a LOMA says, “Hey even though this house is in a flood plain, the topography of the lot and the way the house is sitting on the lot precludes it from ever flooding, so you don’t have to have insurance.”

My client hired an elevation engineer who came and surveyed the property. He determined that her house actually sits a full 6 feet ABOVE the flood line. There is no physical way her house could ever flood from the Nature Preserve. It’s physically impossible for the water to get up to the house.

So, we are waiting to hear from FEMA any day now with the letter that officially says her house is will not require insurance. She also has buyers for the house, who made their offer contingent on her getting that LOMA…so everyone keep your fingers crossed for us that it arrives soon!

Here’s the formal definition of a LOMA from FEMA:

LOMA Definition

If you are selling your home and suddenly find you are in a flood zone, don’t panic. You may have a way out. Go to the FEMA website to better understand everything and then get yourself an engineer. Even if your house isn’t for sale, you might want to do it so whenever you do sell, it’s all taken care of.

Good luck!


Images: Liz Brazil,  FEMA
Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

US Home Price Expectations

US Home Price expectationsThe above chart, US Home Price Expectations, reflects expert opinions on where home prices are headed. I like this chart because it reflects not only the optimists’, but also the pessimists’ views…separately.

Both feel prices are headed upwards, but I have to be honest, right now, it’s just not what I am seeing in the marketplace.

Hmmmm…where is the market going?


Image: Pulsenomics
Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Rock Stars’ front doors…

This is a post from other blog, Front Door Freak. It was kind of fun, so I decided to re-post it here too.


Sorry, I was MIA yesterday. I didn’t publish my regular Sunday front door feature where I feature a bunch of doors all with one thing in common…color, style or maybe even the owner.

You see, my son was is learning to play the bass guitar and he had two performances this weekend.

Of course, as his mother, I think he killed it! I’ve never heard a better rendition of Freebird! :-)

But, the other thing that got killed was our weekend…he was in two performances that were three hours each. One on Saturday, one on Sunday.

Anyway, I am bringing you a quasi-Sunday Front Door feature today…Rock Star front doors!



Mick Jagger's houseMick Jagger  -  Daily Mail


R&R Eric Clapton's houseEric Clapton  -  Maia Kaspar Kauffman


R&R Freddie Mercury's doorFreddy Mercury  -  Maia Kaspar Kauffman


paul mccartney's doorPaul McCartney  -  Trip Advisor


George Harrison's HouseGeorge Harrison  -  You Tube


Roger DaltreyRoger Daltry  -  A Young Vintage Wholigan


David BowieDavid Bowie  -  Maxwell Style


gene-simmons-sherman-oaks-house-photos-011-480wGene Simmons  -  TMZ


Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Weekly Home Sales Snapshot – 5/15/15

Source: Greater Fairfield County CMLS,  HOUSES Sold = Single Family, Multi-Family, Condo/Co-Op


Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

I forgot to get my beach sticker this year!

Around here, if you don’t get a beach sticker, then you are out of luck going to the beach! Don’t wait until it’s too late, click on the links below for your town and register.

And…don’t forget your sunblock!August 31, 2004  6:36 PM


Stickers    Beach Hours & Rules


Stickers    Beach Hours & Rules


No info available, check with Fairfield for eligibility there.


Stickers    Beach Hours & Rules


Stickers    Beach Hours & Rules


No info available, check with surrounding towns for eligibility there.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Sometimes it’s important to take a step back and remember what you like about your house

If you read this blog with any frequency, it’s no secret that I am ALWAYS on the hunt for another house. Something bigger, better, more unique…

Anyway, every now and again,something reminds me of why I like my current house.

As I was sitting at my kitchen table answering emails, I looked up and noticed the bright sunshine dappling through the trees with their bright green, new leaves.

Just. So. Pretty.

Anyway, made me realize that my house has some pretty great features that would be hard to replicate at another house.

dappled deck w:logo

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment