Cynthia Owens - Five College REALTORS ®



Posted by Cynthia Owens on 6/20/2019

What’s curb appeal enhancement? A whopping 87 percent of buyers start their home search online. How your house looks, that attractiveness of a residence or commercial property as viewed from the street is curb appeal. 

It’s all about making that crucial first impression. After all, you dress your best when attending a job interview. Sometimes we spend hours grooming in front of the mirror before a first date. The same thing happens when a home seller wants to sell a house; they ensure that there's an enhancement in the curb appeal. 

Your curb is crucial because it is where the impression of your potential buyer originates. As they say, "The first impression lasts." So it is vital that it should be appealing to your buyer for you to gain useful feedback and positive comments from them. To help you achieve the beauty that your curb deserves, here are ways to enhance your curb appeal:

Painting

Painting is one of the most important things to consider if you want your house to look vibrant and attractive. One way to enhance curb appeal is by painting your home with a suitable color. It is essential that your exterior paint match with its theme. The color of the roof should also be taken into consideration when picking the right color for your home. However, do not overdo the paint in your house with bright colors. Having too large a variety of colors make your house look distracting.

Manicured Yard

Lawn enhancement is also ideal as it gives your home an edge. Bedding materials and fresh mulch could be added around the plants to make your garden bedding sharper. If you have the cash to spare, invest in landscaping. Landscaped front yards are pleasing to the eye for your visitors and homebuyers when you are selling your home.

Lighting

Next is by providing sufficient lighting for your curb. Porch and carriage lights highlight the features of your house and curb at night. Accent lighting in flower beds and along walkways show off its unique details. Aside from the fantastic curb appeal that careful lighting can provide, it will also make it safer for you to go out in your yard at night because of the increased visual effect that it gives.

The first impression is the skill in home selling. The view from your street can drive buyer traffic to your home more than you think. If you want to enhance your home curb appeal, you might consider several of these things for your home to look as beautiful as possible.




Categories: real estate   curb appeal   exterior  


Posted by Cynthia Owens on 6/17/2019

This Single-Family in Williamsburg, MA recently sold for $395,000. This Other style home was sold by Cynthia Owens - Five College REALTORS ®.


9 Fort Hill Road, Williamsburg, MA 01039

Single-Family

$399,900
Price
$395,000
Sale Price

6
Rooms
4
Beds
2
Baths
Charming country home set on a hillside in the village of Haydenville surrounded by nearly one acre of gardens, fruit trees and recreation area. Enter through an inviting and spacious front porch to a nicely updated home with an open floor plan featuring a sunlit kitchen with generous windows and skylites looking out over a babbling brook with beautiful natural landscaping. The flexible floor plan presents a first floor master bedroom with full bath or if you prefer a wonderful family room. Living room features cozy wood burning stove. Three nicely sized bedrooms and full bath on the second floor creates plenty of space for the family. The detached two bay garage features a finished space on the second floor perfect for a studio or home office. Two additional outbuildings also provide great space of storage or garden supplies. This idyllic home is conveniently located within a short drive to the Williamsburg town center as well vibrant Northampton.

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Categories: Sold Homes  


Posted by Cynthia Owens on 6/14/2019

This Single-Family in Amherst, MA recently sold for $362,500. This Antique,Farmhouse style home was sold by Cynthia Owens - Five College REALTORS ®.


10 Summer Street, Amherst, MA 01002

North Amherst

Single-Family

$354,900
Price
$362,500
Sale Price

7
Rooms
3
Beds
2
Baths
It is a great time to be in the Mill District! This lovely home will charm you the minute you enter! The renovated kitchen provides an open floor plan to the dining room/living room combining for easy entertaining. The French doors in the dining area exit to the rear deck. The expansive family room / guest space / home office, with full bath provide additional living area on the main level with exit to the spacious yard. Currently used as a first floor Master bedroom but you decide! Three generous bedrooms on the second floor enjoy the large bath with claw foot tub and separate shower. Hardwood, bamboo and parquet floors. The large fenced corner lot with abundant perennials provides two deck areas and patio for outdoor activities. This lovingly maintained home is in a prime location, a short walk to Puffers Pond, Atkins and all the exciting developments in the Mill District and only minutes to UMass and Amherst Center!

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Categories: Sold Homes  


Posted by Cynthia Owens on 6/13/2019

If you love entertaining and hosting dinner guests, you probably take the time to create beautiful meals with paired cocktails to complete your menu. For those who entertain frequently, shopping for cocktail supplies can add time and a bit of hassle to arranging your meal. You have to go to several different stores to find the right liquor and mixers. Instead, designing and stocking up your home bar can help you be prepared for your guests at any time and make those last-minute invites hassle free. It can also add interest and appeal to your kitchen, dining room or living room space. So, what do you need to create a sophisticated bar set up for your home?

The first step to ensuring you can create delicious cocktails anytime is to have the right tools. Visit your local restaurant or bar supply store and find yourself one or two standard shakers along with a couple of strainers. Pick up a bar spoon and a jigger or two for perfectly mixed cocktails every time — for those new to mixology a jigger is a measuring tool used to portion out your liquor and mixers for balanced drinks. For beautiful garnishing purchase a twist peeler bar knife and a small paring knife. If you'd like to be able to make your own fresh mixers, definitely invest in a small juicer. Finally, top off your shopping trip with glassware. Think about the number of people you typically have over and purchase a combination of glasses to support your entertaining habits. A set of martini glasses, highball or Collins glasses and rocks glasses should do the trick. Tip—for sophisticated rocks drinks invest in a couple of rock ball molds you can use to prepare large ice spheres. Bonus Tip—you can look up cocktail recipes online, but a great bar bible is an excellent addition to your home bar. Find one at your bar supply shop or bookstore.

Now that you have your tools you are ready to build your liquor selection. You can build out your bar over time, so don’t worry about getting twenty bottles of liquor all at once or emptying your bank account to get all the top-shelf brands. There are tasty and affordable options for all liquors. Think about the cocktails you typically like to create, or simply invest in the supplies to make a few of the classics. Find a bourbon you prefer for making an old-fashioned and sweet vermouth for manhattans. Purchase your favorite gin and vodka for martinis, bloody mary's and simple mixed drinks, along with dry vermouth. Have a silver tequila on hand for margaritas, and finally, round out your selection with a white rum and a dark rum for mojitos or a dark and stormy. 

The last things you need to build beautiful cocktails are your mixers and garnish. Though you will have to purchase your fresh, perishable items like oranges, limes, and mint closer to your dinner date, there are some items you can have on hand and some simple syrups you can prepare earlier in the week to save time on the day. You can purchase a jar of Luxardo cherries that will keep for a long time, and martini olives (and juice) will also stay fresh for a good while when refrigerated. Many pre-made bloody mary mixes also have an extended fridge life. Your basic simple-syrup lasts in your fridge for a long time and is made quite easily with hot water and sugar. If you plan to pair a specific cocktail with your meal, you can prepare additional mixers a two to four days ahead. Juice fresh lime for margaritas, combine lemon and lime for sour mix or create a mint simple-syrup for mojitos. Remember you don’t want to make huge amounts of mixers that won’t keep. To save on costs only prepare the mixers you need for the cocktail or cocktails you’re making that week and base your amounts on the number of people you expect to entertain. 

You now have all the essentials to maintain your home bar and keep yourself prepared for entertaining anytime. If you’re new to making cocktails or are trying a new one for the first time, remember to practice ahead of your dinner to ensure you have the right combination of ingredients. Practice your lemon twists and orange peels for gorgeous garnishing, and you're ready to go! 

If entertaining is a fundamental part of your lifestyle, let your real estate agent know. They can help you find a home with the best kitchen and dining space for your dinners and parties and maybe even something with a beautiful built-in bar.





Posted by Cynthia Owens on 6/6/2019

After a long winter, it’s nice to get outside and enjoy the sunshine and warm temperatures. That is, until I remember all of the insects that the season brings.

Insects can wreak havoc on your lawn by digging holes. Others can demolish your garden in a matter of days by eating leaves and laying eggs.

It’s no wonder we turn to pesticides to keep them away from the yard and garden we’ve spent so much time perfecting.

On the other hand, there are some insects that provide immense benefits to your yard. These ones often go unnoticed due to their nocturnal activity and tendency to stay out of sight.

In this article, we’re going to talk about some beneficial bugs that you actually want in your yard and garden. We’ll discuss why they’re so important and how you can encourage them to stick around.

But first, let’s discuss why you’d even want to invite insects in your yard.

The problem with pesticides

It would be reckless to label all pesticides as harmful. However, some pesticides have been shown to have detrimental effects on us, and on the bees who pollinate the plants that keep us all fed.

It is difficult to examine the effect of pesticides because there are so many factors at play, making a controlled study difficult to achieve. However, some “natural experiments” (meaning ones we don’t plan for and execute in a lab) have shown the pesticide chlorpyrifos to cause developmental problems in children.

Many people born before the turn of the century will probably remember or at least heard of the pesticide DDT and the risks that came with it. The dangers of such pesticides have led us to seek out alternatives in our yards, where our children play, and our gardens, where we get our food.

So, which bugs do you want to stick around in your yard?

Lady beetles

Lady beetles, or “ladybugs” as they’re known in North America, are both beautiful and useful to have around the yard.

These colorful beetles look gentle but they are predators who prey on plant-eating insects called aphids. In its lifetime, a lady beetle can eat up to 5,000 aphids, which comes to about 50 per day. That’s a lot of protection for your garden.

To attract lady beetles to your garden, all you’ll need is a source of pollen for them to eat. They particularly like cilantro, fennel, dill, geraniums, and dandelions. You can also purchase lady beetles online and, with some luck, they’ll keep returning year after year.

Parasites

There sure don't sound beneficial, but there are a few varieties of parasitic insects that won’t harm you or your garden, but will kill pests like aphids and flies. Parasitic wasps lay their eggs inside of aphids, killing them. Fly parasites kill flies in the pupal stage.

Flies are attracted to manure and other composting materials that you may want to use in your garden. If you keep a composting bin outdoors, you’re probably no stranger to flies. Purchasing fly parasites will help you manage the flies without resorting to sprays.

Earthworms

These slimy creatures aren’t like the others on our list. Rather than managing pests, earthworms help your soil directly. They aerate the soil, improving drainage, and they add nutrients to the soil in the form the of castings they leave behind.

The best way to attract earthworms to your yard and garden is to simply take good care of the soil. Earthworms thrive in moist soil with plenty of organic material.

So, when you see those tiny piles of worm castings in your dirt, just rake them out. It’s a sign that you have a healthy lawn and healthy soil underneath.




Tags: garden   insects   lawn care  
Categories: insects   gardening   Lawn Care  




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