We had over 30 broker open houses today in Greenwich, despite the cold weather and icy driveways – one of which made my life literally flash before my eyes. However, one house stood out: Sotheby’s Ed Mortimer’s listing on one of my favorite streets in the heart of mid-country at 68 Birch Lane offered for $6,895,000. This beautiful home appears to have been really well built with timeless appointments and beautiful finishes. High ceilings, large rooms, en-suite baths with all the bedrooms and exquisite craftsmanship that emanates quality make this a “must see” house if you are in the market for a home in this price range. This was the best house I saw today.
It was just announced that, Legends, Earth Wind and Fire and The Doobie Brothers, team up with fan favorite O.A.R. to headline The Greenwich Town Party May 23rd! In addition to other performers, five local bands will accompany the All-Stars for this all day event. Can you imagine saying you opened for Earth, Wind, and Fire?! Is it too late to start a band? Who wants to be my lead singer?
Following the likes of James Taylor, Paul Simon, and Carlos Santana, GTP just keeps raising the bar. It’s an unbelievable day to kickback and hang out with family and friends. If you’ve never been to a GTP this is the year to hit Roger Sherman Baldwin Park and get to know your neighbors. Let’s reminisce together. I can’t wait!
Community tickets go on sale March 2nd for $80 general admission at www.greenwichtownparty.org
The Greenwich Town Party, just another reason why…
I Love Greenwich!
-Watch this video to learn how to appeal your Greenwich real estate taxes. In order to get the forms you will need, go to: http://www.greenwichct.org/government/boards/board_of_assessment_appeals/assessment_appeal_forms/
Have you seen American Sniper? If not, do not continue reading…spoiler alert!
I’d love to get feedback from readers as to whether or not you experienced this phenomena. I’ve spoken to everyone I know that has seen the movie and they all experienced it: total silence at the end of the movie. It seems that no one even wanted to get up. I felt like I was at a funeral at the end. I think everyone was just in awe of this American soldier’s life and end. What do you think?
American Sniper is Clint Eastwood’s best work as far as I’m concerned and I loved Gran Torino. Bradley Cooper also did his best work in this film. I have new respect for him as well. This is not just another war movie, it’s a depiction of an American soldier’s life that is so well done that you feel like you are a part of his experience. You almost feel like an intruder. If this movie does not renew the American people’s resolve to support our troops during and after their service, then we are lost as a nation. Thank you Clint Eastwood and Bradley Cooper for delivering such a great message. Most of all, a heart felt thanks to all our troops, past and present. I could never thank you enough for your sacrifice.
Looking for great real estate in Greenwich?
Contact Danielle Claroni at New England Land Company, Ltd today! 203-570-8110
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As the seasons continue to change, many are gearing up to make pre-winter home improvements. A home improvement project has many components, from planning to budgeting and hiring the right professional. The following article outlines the importance of an often-overlooked fundamental of home improvement: permitting.
To save both time and money, some people avoid getting building permits. But most cities require them, Greenwich included. Besides ensuring safety during construction –building inspectors sometimes stop by to check on the progress of projects at key points – permits are also a source of revenue for the town.
The Greenwich building department charges a fee when a building permit is issued. Also, work done with a building permit can result in an increase in the homeowners’ property taxes because, in general, a home improvement increases the assessed value of the property.
Permits are usually required when any structural work is planned or the basic living space of a home is altered. They generally cover new construction, repairs, alterations, demolition, and additions to a structure. Some jurisdictions require the permit to be posted in a visible spot on the premises while the work is being done.
Aside from structural changes, permits also may be needed to cover the installation of foundations for tanks and equipment, as well as the construction or demolition of ducts, sprinkler systems, or standpipe systems, and for the replacement of hot water heaters, repairs to the HVAC system and other such necessary repairs.
By law, all buildings must have a building permit and a certificate of occupancy before they can be used. If you are considering selling your home, make sure that all past permits are closed and have a Certificate of Occupancy and that all repairs and additions have been permitted. A buyer’s attorney will find these and it may cause a problem with the sale of your home. So, before you finish planning your home improvement project, be sure to check with the Town of Greenwich about their permitting process to save you hassle and headaches down the road.
A: A mechanic’s lien is a “hold” against your property that provides contractors and suppliers legal recourse to assure payment for services. The liens vary from state to state and allow for a cloud on the title of your property and foreclosure action. Also, if you paid the contractor, but he failed to pay the subcontractors and laborers – who do not have a contract with you – then the workers may file a mechanic's lien on your home. This could result in a double payment by you for the same job. You can protect yourself from unwarranted liens by selecting your contractor carefully and managing your construction project responsibly. Also, most construction lenders will specify a payment distribution process that involves the securing of lien waivers. The remodeling contract should address this as well, assuring that the general contractor is responsible for all payments as well as any costs required to remedy lien disputes that may arise.
A: Lenders require private mortgage insurance (PMI) on most loans with less than a 20 percent down payment. They believe there is a correlation between borrower equity and default. They have found that the less money borrowers put down, the more likely they are to default on a loan. PMI guarantees the lender will not lose money if this happens and a foreclosure is necessary.
A growing number of private lenders, however, are loosening up their requirements for low-down payment loans. In fact, the Homeowners Protection Act states that PMI must be dropped on any loan originated after July 29, 1999. Borrowers can request that PMI be canceled when they pay down the principal balance on their mortgage loans to 80 percent of the purchase price. Lenders must automatically cancel PMI when the balance hits 78 percent.
Dreading your home renovation? It can be hard not to – from the planning to the cost, home improvement can cause a lot of stress. In order to make your renovation more enjoyable, below are a handful of updates that aren't all that bad.
Pull up the old carpet. Getting rid of dingy carpet in your home can be a satisfying task. What's even more satisfying is revealing lustrous hard wood underneath. If your home has hidden wood floors, polish them up and see your space transform. No wood? No worries. Replace it with fresh, updated carpet.
Landscaping. Before the harsher winter months set in, get outside and landscape your yard. Get the whole family involved and turn it into a weekend project. Plan, mulch, plant, and then sit back and enjoy your hard work.
Paint the interior. Painting can be fun, even meditative. Make sure to choose a color you love, and don't forget to have a little fun with it. Try adding a festive accent wall or color border.
Make use of empty space. Planning out how to change your already existing layout can be extremely rewarding, like a puzzle. Transform that unused office into a home theatre or fitness room. Make a pantry out of that extra space in the laundry room. If you have the financial ability, you can even get luxurious – use extra bedroom space to create a walk-in closet or bathroom suite, or turn that unused first floor bathroom into extended kitchen space.
Play designer. Sometimes the renovation that packs the most punch isn't a renovation at all. Redesigning your space can completely transform it, and it's usually pretty fun. Pick out new accents, from throw-pillows to curtains. Shop for affordable art, buy new furniture and lay it out differently. You will be amazed with how much can be accomplished with the space you already have.
A: They can remain on your credit record for seven to 10 years.
However, a borrower who has worked hard to reestablish good credit may be shown some leniency by the lender. And the circumstances surrounding the bankruptcy may also influence a lender's decision. For example, if you went bankrupt because you were laid off from your job, the lender may be more sympathetic. If, however, you went through bankruptcy because you overextended personal credit lines and lived beyond your means, it is unlikely the lender will readily give you a break.