Thank you for making us #1!

New Team Photo 150x150 Thank you for making us #1!We are thrilled to be recognized as the top producing ReMax team in all of New England for the month of June. We couldn’t have done it without the support our community and a great group of motivated buyers and sellers.  ReMax of New England has over 220 offices and 2,800 sales associates in Massachusetts, Connecticut, Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont. We are thrilled to be part of this team!

The Greater Boston real estate market continues to produce results. Our team has over 35 years of local combined real estate experience offering exceptional service to buyers and sellers. If you are interested in learning more about the current market, or would like to discuss your goals, we’d be happy to speak with you!

Summer Concerts at Pinebank in Jamaica Plain

Pinebank 150x150 Summer Concerts at Pinebank in Jamaica PlainFrom live jazz on the common to world music under the stars, there is an abundance of live music in the city this summer! The Summer Sunday’s in the Park Series at Pinebank in Jamaica Plain and Olmstead Park in Brookline includes top-notch entertainment that features brass, strings, opera and big bold sounds of a 50+ piece orchestra! Concerts are 60-90 minutes and wrap up before sunset.

At Pinebank, Jamaica Plain 

Co-presented with Friends of Jamaica Pond | Co-sponsored by BostonParks and Recreation.

July 20      5:00 pm                 Metropolitan Wind Symphony

July 27     5:00 pm                  Boston Classical Orchestra Brass Ensemble

Access to the park is off the Jamaicaway, directly across from Moraine Street.

At Allerton Overlook, Olmsted Park, Brookline

Co-sponsored by Brookline Parks and Open Space, with support from the Free For All Concert Fund

August 3      5:00 PM                Musicians and Friends of the Longwood Symphony Orchestra

August 10     5:00 PM              Boston Opera Collaborative

Collect friends, bring a picnic and enjoy the sounds of summer in the heart of the city!

For more information visit the Emerald Necklace Conservancy website.

 

Boston’s Top 20 Agents

image001 150x150 Bostons Top 20 Agents​We are thrilled to be recognized by Boston’s Top 20 Agents website for achieving sales success in the Boston region for the month of May. Boston’s Top 20 determines their rankings based on monthly closed residential sales volume within each geographic region. We are grateful to the Greater Boston community for supporting our business during the busy spring market.  Our team has over 35 years of local combined real estate experience offering exceptional  services to buyers and sellers. If you are interested in learning more about current market conditions, or to discuss your goals, we would be happy to hear from you!
Ellen, Janis and Josh

Green Living is Smart Living

Solar Panels Green Living is Smart LivingIn the past year, several leading real estate developers, in collaboration with the City of Boston, launched projects that feature cutting edge energy efficient features and sustainable design. These state of the art properties use the newest energy saving technology, super-insulated shells and air tight construction.  What does this mean for home buyers? It means greater energy savings during the cold New England winters and the hot summer months. These homes are designed to keep you warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer – you will be able to maintain an optimal indoor temperature – without relying on large mechanical heating and cooling systems or fossil fuels.

These homes use state-of-the-art energy efficient building materials such as ductless mini split air conditioning and heating systems, and high performance triple glazed windows that provide fabulous visual appeal with great insulation against the winter’s cold harsh winds. Ductless heating and air conditioning systems avoid energy losses that are prevalent in traditional systems. High efficiency, Energy Star appliances cut down on the long term operational costs while helping to reduce the carbon footprint and greenhouse gas effects on the environment. Solar panels harness the sun’s renewable energy and use it to heat the domestic hot water and capture the sun’s energy to produce electricity.  Many of these homes are designed to produce more electricity than they consume and the surplus will be sold back to the grid. A smart way to live!

While the Boston real estate market has been strong, there is very little “new construction”, and the new construction that does exist is not necessarily “green” or “energy efficient”. We have been involved in sales and marketing of several energy efficient and energy-positive homes, and are becoming the experts on this type of construction. Our team recently sold:

EXTERIOR1 150x150 Green Living is Smart LivingExtforWeb1 150x150 Green Living is Smart Living55 Marcella St 150x150 Green Living is Smart Living 

 

 

 

 

 

64 Catherine St and 66 Catherine St: Jamaica Plain’s first E+ Energy Positive homes. These homes have been designed with cutting edge technology and are super-insulated. The “E+” homes or energy-positive townhouses are being constructed according to the U.S. Building Council’s strict LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) standards for designing, building and maintaining properties and using sustainable materials.

226-232 Highland Street: Another E+ Energy Positive attached townhouse that is environmentally efficient – conforming to U.S. Green Building standards for platinum certification.

55 Marcella Street: This super insulated green single family was designed to use 90% less heating energy than a comparable home and is one of only a few passive energy home developments in Massachusetts.

Ideally, these homes will serve as a prototype for future residential developments.

In the last few years, buyers have expressed more interest than ever in reducing heating costs and decreasing the size of their carbon footprints. If you are interested in learning more about smart energy efficient homes, we’d be happy to meet with you. Please contact us to learn more about energy efficient home ownership.

Smart living is green living!

Ellen, Janis and Josh

 

Navigate the Mortgage Process Like a Pro

mortgage house money 600 150x150 Navigate the Mortgage Process Like a ProWe have helped hundreds of buyers navigate the lending process. We couldn’t have done it without the support of a team of seasoned brokers and lenders. A mortgage broker is a professional who acts as your agent to research and provide the best possible loan terms for your current financial situation and long term objectives. While working with a seasoned mortgage broker is an important part of the home-buying process, there are a few important points to consider before contacting a broker.

Will you be starting a new job while looking for a new home?

Keep in mind that you’ll need 30 days of payroll records from your new job before you can qualify for a mortgage. A paystub from your new job may be required.

Are you self-employed?

Buyers who are self-employed can verify their income by submitting two years of federal tax returns and a letter from a CPA verifying a business license and business history. The lender will also require verification of the business name, address, phone number or website.

Will you be using a gift from family for the deposit or closing costs?

Gifts must be documented with a gift letter form signed by all parties. You’ll need to include a copy of the cancelled check, and must be able to show that the gift has been deposited in your account.

Have you opened new credit cards or have you obtained new lines of credit?

Lenders will conduct a final review of your credit report the week before the closing. Any changes will need to be verified. The lender will evaluate the impact on your credit score. The verification process could delay your closing because it cannot be done until a few days before the closing date. If you’re aware of any changes to your credit, please contact your mortgage broker immediately.

A seasoned mortgage broker can streamline the mortgage process and add value to your real estate transaction. To learn more about the mortgage process, and review our preferred mortgage professionals, visit the financing page of our website or reach out to us with any questions you might have.

 

Photo by Daniel Catt

 

 

 

Wonderful comments from our client Denice

57 Wachusett 150x150 Wonderful comments from our client DeniceWe are grateful for wonderful sellers like our client Denice.  She wrote the following:

Thanks so much for the incredible job you’ve done! You have exceeded my expectations by leaps and bounds.

Your work has reassured me that exceptional Real Estate agents certainly earn their piece of the finished product. Finding the right ones are key, so I will always touch base with the two of you before I tackle the next Real Estate venture.

Honestly, I would never change a moment of this process. You have made miracles happen under the gun and never let me know just how much I stressed you out.

Thank you again!

Denice

If you’re thinking about buying or selling a home, or know someone who is, we’d love to speak with you!

- Ellen and Janis

Ask Ellen and Janis: Why Buy Energy Efficient Construction?

Solar Array photo credit NAIT Ask Ellen and Janis: Why Buy Energy Efficient Construction?

photo credit NAIT

Last week’s cold weather snap was a not so gentile reminder that New England winters can be bone-chilling and long. While we love the change of seasons, severe winter weather has implications for our heating budget and the fragile environment. In the last few years, buyers have expressed more interest than ever in reducing heating costs and decreasing the size of their carbon footprints. While the Boston real estate market has been strong, there is very little “new construction”, and the new construction that does exist is not necessarily “green” or “energy efficient”.

In collaboration with the City of Boston several leading developers launched energy efficient projects that feature smart sustainable design. These cutting-edge properties are super-insulated and feature air tight construction.  What does this mean for home buyers? It means higher R-values for the cold New England winters and the hot summer months. These homes are designed to keep you warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer – you will be able to maintain an optimal indoor temperature – without relying on large mechanical heating and cooling systems or fossil fuels.

55 Marcella St 150x150 Ask Ellen and Janis: Why Buy Energy Efficient Construction?

55 Marcella St, Roxbury, MA

These homes use state-of-the-art energy efficient building materials such as ductless mini split air conditioning and heating systems, and high performance triple glazed windows that provide fabulous visual appeal with great insulation against the winter’s cold harsh winds. Ductless heating and air conditioning systems avoid energy losses that are prevalent in traditional systems. High efficiency, Energy Star appliances cut down on the long term operational costs while helping to reduce the carbon footprint and greenhouse gas effects on the environment.

These smartly designed homes produce much of the energy they consume. Solar panels harness the sun’s renewable energy and use it to heat the domestic hot water and capture the sun’s energy to produce electricity.  These homes are designed to produce more electricity than they consume and the surplus will be sold back to the grid. A smart way to live!

ExtforWeb1 150x150 Ask Ellen and Janis: Why Buy Energy Efficient Construction?

228 Highland Ave, Roxbury

EXTERIOR1 150x150 Ask Ellen and Janis: Why Buy Energy Efficient Construction?

66 Catherine St, Jamaica Plain

We have been involved in sales and marketing of several energy-positive homes, and are becoming the experts on this type of construction. If you are interested in learning more about smart energy efficient homes or would like to see JP’s first energy positive home, we’d be happy to schedule a private showing. Smart living is green living!

Warmly,

Ellen and Janis

Ask Ellen and Janis: What happens at a home inspection?

7932506788 68b31b00f5 z 150x150 Ask Ellen and Janis: What happens at a home inspection? What happens at a home inspection??  What all buyers and sellers want to know.

Having a home inspection is a very important part of the home buying process. For some buyers this may be the first time you are going to own a home and the working mechanics of it are new to you. Thus a good home inspector (and if you are our buyer we can recommend several good ones to you) will reveal not only things that are wrong or need attention but he or she will also explain to you how certain things work: ie., the hot water heater, the main water shut-off, the heating system, etc. This information is extremely valuable. And, if anything does come up on an inspection as your buyer agent(s) we will advise you on how to navigate through the list and what things to ask the seller to repair and what things to ask the seller to provide a credit for you. You should expect to pay someplace in the range of $400 – $700 for a good home inspection, complete with a report and photos.

If you are selling a home and we represent you on the sale, that includes us attending the home inspection on your behalf. We listen, observe, and take copious notes from what the inspector says out loud. We won’t know exactly what the buyer will be asking you for until it is given to us formally in writing within the inspection time period allowable as written on the offer.   The inspection typically takes 2-3 hours depending on the size of your home. And, if you own a condo, the inspector will be inspecting the common area items as well including but not limited to: the roof, foundation, exterior, porches/decks, retaining walls, etc. If you are thinking about selling we can help you to showcase your home in the best light and advise you on what’s best to do as it relates to work on the property ahead of having your home inspected by a buyer.

Contact us if you have questions regarding home inspections or for that matter anything real estate related and we’ll be happy to answer them.

photo credit: stockmonkeys

 

Help Make a Child’s Holiday Wish Come True!

Screen Shot 2013 12 10 at 9.27.29 AM 300x93 Help Make a Childs Holiday Wish Come True! Once again, we are pleased to be the toy captains for the Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage office in Jamaica Plain. We are partnering with Bernie & Phyl’s Furniture to collect toys as part of The Home for Little Wanderers’ Big Wishes Gift Drive. Big Wishes is one of the Boston area’s oldest and largest toy drives, supporting children and families who are living in at-risk circumstances and are served by The Home’s programs across Eastern Massachusetts.

We encourage friends, clients, & neighbors throughout the community to drop off new, unwrapped toys at the Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage office located at 713 Centre St. and any Bernie & Phyl’s store in Massachusetts. The Coldwell Banker offices are accepting donations now through 12:00 noon Wednesday, December 18, 2013.

bears 150x150 Help Make a Childs Holiday Wish Come True! The Home needs gifts for children ranging in age from birth to 22-years, with an urgent need for gifts for the 14- to 18-year-old teenagers in its care. To help meet the challenge of providing suitable holiday gifts for the teens that The Home serves, Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage also welcomes donations of gift cards. Some suggested places for purchasing gift cards are music stores and clothing outlets such as Target, Marshalls, T.J. Maxx, or Walmart, and online retailers for personal care items, electronics and sporting goods.

To learn more about ways to help The Home this holiday season, including how you can pledge a gift from a child’s personal wish list or shop from a general list and have the gift delivered free of charge directly to The Home’s Toy Room, visit www.thehome.org/bigwishes.

Thank you & “Big Wishes” for you and your family during the holiday season!

Ellen And Janis

Happy Thanksgivukkah!

ht asher weintraub menurkey ll 131115 16x9 6081 245x300 Happy Thanksgivukkah! Thanksgiving and Hanukkah share a focus on gratefulness, feasting and an air of celebration. This year the first full day of Hanukkak falls on Thanksgiving day providing each of us with an opportunity to reflect and to be grateful. The two holidays haven’t coincided since 1888, and by some calculations, won’t happen for another 78,000 years.

Rabbi Tzvi Freeman recently wrote on the website Chabad.org: Thanksgiving is “a narrative about an arduous journey to escape religious persecution for freedom in a new land, the establishment of a democratic charter and the sense of Divine providence that carried those refugees through their plight.”

“That’s Chanukah, as well,” Freeman continued. “A narrative deeply embedded in the collective Jewish psyche of how we fought back against religious oppression in our own land, earned our freedom and thanked G‑d for the miracles.” This rare convergence has inspired many in our community to incorporate elements on Hanukkah into their Thanksgiving menus. Some people are calling the holiday “Thanksgivukkah.”

Whether you celebrate Thanksgiving, Hanukkah or another tradition, this week provides each of us with the time to reflect on the past year, and to be grateful for the many people and events that continue to come into our lives.

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