Jill Finkelstein - Compass



Posted by Jill Finkelstein on 9/23/2018

One recurring problem all parents deal with -- especially on weekends and school breaks -- is keeping their children entertained and engaged. (Sound familiar?)

While you can sometimes take your kids and their friends bowling, to the movies, or roller skating, those type of activities are only short-term fixes. Once you've expended all the possibilities, you're back to square one! The ideal scenario is to be able to fill in some of those gaps with fun, recreational activities at home.

If you have a finished basement or are talking about renovating an unfinished area, then that part of the house can provide the space for a dedicated rec room. The cost of finishing a basement can be expensive -- with estimates ranging from $10,000 to around $35,000. The final cost would depend on factors like the square footage of your basement, contractor pricing, materials used, and whether you're willing or able to do any of the work yourself. For growing families with active children, remodeling a basement or buying a house that already has a finished basement could prove to be a priceless resource for years to come!

Setting Up a Game Room

Outfitting a rec room with items like game tables is an additional expense that could have an impact on your budget. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to keep a lid on those costs. One idea would be to spread out those purchases over a period of time. For example, one year you could buy a billiards table; the next year, you could add a ping-pong table, air hockey game, or a foosball table to the room. Many of these items also make excellent birthday or holiday gifts for the kids, so you can potentially include those purchases in your gift-buying budget. With a little online price comparison, you'll also discover that you don't have to pay top dollar for any of those game tables. It's rarely necessary to get the "deluxe" version of a pool table, air hockey game, or foosball table, and there's a wide range of sizes and prices available -- both online and off. You may also stumble upon opportunities to buy used versions of those popular rec room games, and save a lot of money in the process.

Two inexpensive ways to expand the range of activities available in your recreation room (and keep your kids happy) is to stock up on board games and age-appropriate craft supplies. A television with a DVD player, popular channels, and video games is also sure to provide hours of entertainment on rainy days, school holidays, and unstructured weekends. Finished basements can also be a great place to host children's birthday parties, sleepovers, and club meetings. A TV in the basement can also help maintain family harmony. When the grownups want to watch one program and the kids want to watch something entirely different, you don't have to draw straws or pull rank!





Posted by Jill Finkelstein on 9/22/2018

FANTASTIC NEW CONSTRUCTION. FOUR FINISHED LEVELS INCLUDING TWO THIRD FLOOR SEPARATE ROOMS! This natural gas home, on almost a half acre, is full of surprises and wonderful features! The first floor offers a lovely living room and adjoining dining room space as well as a GRAND gas fireplaced family room, private office, large mudroom with built-in cubbies and separate laundry room. The stainless steel kitchen has a large quartz island, high performance gourmet Thor appliances, including a built-in coffee machine and access to the composite maintenance free deck which overlooks the large yard! The second floor has 4 spacious bedrooms and 3 full baths and access to two separate staircases to the the third floor Bonus Room and a third floor Great Room. There is a huge finished lower level with walkout to the yard! The home has central AC, alarm, sprinkler system and hardwood on the first, second and third floors. This home is conveniently located to walk to town and train. Move in!

More Info on this Property | New Listing Alerts




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Posted by Jill Finkelstein on 9/16/2018

If you're planning on making the transition from apartment renter to homeowner in the near future, you can be sure that the experience will be both exciting and challenging!

While some first-time home buyers are fairly well prepared for the changes that accompany homeownership, others encounter a myriad of unexpected expenses, neighbor problems, and household emergencies. Keeping surprises to a minimum and knowing how to handle difficulties when they come up are two strategies for keeping your life on an even keel in your new home.

When taking your initial plunge into homeownership, here are a few things to keep in mind to avoid problems and get the most from your new home.

Budgeting for expenses: When you're a renter or living with your parents, three things you generally don't have to concern yourself with are home repairs, appliance replacement, and yard maintenance costs. The longer list of homeowner expenses that could take a bite out of your paycheck or bank account includes furnace and AC services, chimney cleaning, snow removal, landscaping, exterminator services, plumbing leaks, and lighting installation. Many first-time home buyers also need to buy items like a lawn mower, clothes washer and dryer, and furniture. Although you can delay or spread out some of these expenses, they do need to be considered when creating a household budget.

Privacy is a factor: Depending on the proximity of houses, the openness of your yard, and the extent to which you want to get to know your neighbors, you might find yourself wanting to have some fencing installed or privacy hedges planted. Ideally, these are alterations you'd want to have done shortly after you move in -- if not before. That way, next door neighbors will have less of a tendency to take it personally when you erect barriers between you and them. And speaking of privacy, curtains and blinds are often a priority that needs to be taken care of immediately. While some homes for sale may include window treatments, there's a good chance your home decorating shopping list may include curtains!

Neighbor relations matter: If you happen to have neighbors who are easy going, relatively quiet, and likable, then consider yourself very fortunate! Being a good neighbor is, of course, a two-way street, so try to keep your noise level down to a "dull roar" and be the kind of neighbor you'd like them to be! That's no guarantee, of course, that everyone's going to get along famously and be the best of friends, but mutual respect and showing a modicum of friendliness to neighbors does help establish a cordial neighborhood atmosphere.

By creating a realistic household budget, being neighborly, and factoring in your need for privacy, you can begin setting the stage for a satisfying and fulfilling homeowner experience.





Posted by Jill Finkelstein on 9/9/2018

Selling a home is a big decision with far-flung ramifications. If you're on the fence about selling your house, there is no need to wait. In fact, there are many reasons why now may be the right time to list your residence, and these include:

1. You can upgrade or downgrade.

Although your current home has served you well for many years, now may be a good time for a change. Fortunately, you can sell your residence and move into a bigger or smaller home that will suit you perfectly.

It often won't take long to transition from one home to another. In many instances, individuals simultaneously sell their current house and search for a new home. This generally enables an individual to seamlessly relocate from his or her current house to a bigger or smaller residence.

2. You can move closer to family members and friends.

If you find your current home is far away from family members and friends, don't stress. For those who sell a home, it may be only a matter of time before you can enjoy convenient access to loved ones.

By selling your current home, you can explore houses in cities and towns where your loved ones reside. Then, if you purchase a house close to family members and friends, you can visit these loved ones without having to worry about a long commute.

3. You can receive plenty of support throughout the home selling journey.

Listing a home may seem virtually impossible, particularly for someone who previously has never embarked on the property selling journey. Lucky for you, help is available to ensure you can quickly and effortlessly sell your home and maximize its value.

Working with a real estate agent typically is a good idea for first-time and experienced home sellers alike. With a real estate agent at your side, you can get the assistance you need to achieve your property selling goals.

A real estate agent understands the assorted pitfalls that a home seller may encounter. As such, he or she works with a home seller to help this individual address potential problems before they escalate. A real estate agent will collaborate with a property seller to craft a house selling strategy. Next, a real estate agent will put this plan into action and do everything possible to promote a house to prospective buyers. And if a seller receives an offer to purchase, a real estate agent will help this individual review his or her options and determine how to proceed.

In addition, a real estate agent provides a housing market resource unlike any other. He or she is available to respond to a seller's concerns and questions. Plus, a real estate agent is happy to provide home selling recommendations.

Take the guesswork out of selling your home Ė hire a real estate agent, and you can receive extensive support as you navigate the property selling journey.




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Posted by Jill Finkelstein on 9/2/2018

Once you have moved into a new home, youíre going to want to make it look amazing with some nice furniture. If youíre in too much of a hurry, you can make some very common furniture buying mistakes that will cost you more than just the money you have wasted on furniture. Read on before you begin filling that new home with sofas, chairs, and tables.  


You Donít Plan For Style Or Practicality


If youíre a young couple moving into your first home, you probably have a lot of plans for the future. Children may possibly be a part of those plans someday. Remember that a $3,000 leather sofa may look really great when itís just the two of you. Fast forward a couple of years to the terrible twos and envision permanent marker all over that beloved couch. Keep in mind that the lifespan of heavily used furniture is anywhere between 7 to 10 years. 


Even if children arenít in your future plans, the same problems are true for pets. If you donít have a dog and purchase the expensive sofa knowing that you have plans to get a dog, you should think twice. Pets can claw furniture and leave behind clumps of pet hair. If you have plans for children, pets, or both, consider the type of fabric that youíll have on the furniture carefully. Itís important to select pieces of furniture that suit your life, budget, and aspirations. 


You Buy Everything At Once


It can be tempting when you have an empty house to try and buy all of your furniture at once. If you buy everything at the same time, you wonít have any room for flexibility to buy pieces to add to your collection from other stores at a later date. The best way to approach filling an empty house is to buy the big necessities first, then fill the rest of your home as you find what you like and need. 


You Forgot To Measure


Imagine this: You just bought your dream bedroom set. The delivery people come to the house to drop it off, and it doesnít fit in the space! When we see things in the store, we often make every effort in our minds to convince ourselves that it will look good in our home. The reality is that furniture needs to fit in order for it to actually ďworkĒ in a room. Before you even set out to buy furniture, take measurements of every room that youíre shopping for. Have the list handy of all these numbers that you can refer to. 


Finding the right furniture comes down to avoiding impulse buys for these big purchases. Planning is everything when it comes to filling your new home with furnishings that will last the test of time and design.