Meryl Freedman Named a Woman of FIRE

Wallingford, CT – Office Leader of the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties’ West Hartford Office, Meryl Freedman was recently honored as one of Commercial Record’s Women of FIRE at an awards luncheon held on August 25th at the Aqua Turf Club in Plantsville, Connecticut. Each year, The Women of FIRE awards recognize the key female players in the local FIRE (Finance, Insurance and Real Estate) sector. What was once a male-dominated industry is now comprised of a myriad of bright, innovative, and philanthropic women paving the way for others to rise in the industry rank. The Women of FIRE awards celebrate these women and their hard work and service to others. “Meryl is a fabulous leader who is passionate about her team and their individual accomplishments,” said Candace Adams, President and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England and Westchester Properties. “She is a consummate professional with a deep understanding of the real estate industry.” Meryl began her real estate career in 1980 when she decided to make a career move from being an elementary school principal to a real estate agent. She quickly worked her way up into a leadership role with Prudential Connecticut Realty’s Windsor office which led to her to run a larger office in Simsbury. With her extensive knowledge and background in real estate under her belt, Meryl was promoted to Regional Vice President of the Northeast region in 2005. Four years later, she accepted the role as Office Leader in the West Harford. In her current office, she is able to collaborate with top-producing agents and grow the office to its current 75...

Things to do this Weekend: August 26th – August 28th Connecticut & Rhode Island

Connecticut Event: Sunflower Maze  Venue: Lyman Orchards in Middlefield, CT Date: July 30 – August 28, 2016 Description: A festival filled with arts and crafts, harbor activities, entertainment for all ages, colorful tents with food and beverages, classic car show, canoe and kayak races, children’s games, national and local entertainers. Event: Plainville Hot Ait Balloon Festival Venue: Norton Park in Plainville, CT Date: August 26 – 28, 2016 Description: Presented by the town’s fire department and considered to be one of the biggest and last remaining balloon festival in the northeast. Event: New Haven Jazz Festival Venue: New Haven Green in New Haven, CT Date: August 27, 2016 Description: Family-friendly event where you can enjoy food from local restaurants, shop and gather information from the many vendors, games and fun for the kids. Come and enjoy the fun on one of the most beautiful town greens in New England. Event: Lazy River Luau  Venue: Harbor Park in Middletown, CT Date: August 26, 2016 Description: A night of Polynesian inspired food and fun. Indulge your taste buds, savor the flavorful island cuisine. Lots of fun, music, dancing, games, prizes and more! Mike Stacy, WRCH Celebrity DJ. Event: Dinosaurs at the Beach Venue; Greenwich Point Park: Tod’s Point Date: August 27, 2016 Description: Kate Dzikiewicz, Bruce Museum Paul Griswold Howes Fellow and paleontologist, will present a family friendly program on dinosaurs. View more events in Connecticut on CTVisit.com.  Rhode Island Event: Brew at the Zoo  Venue: Roger Williams Park Zoo in Providence, RI Date:  August 27, 2016 Description: If it’s been awhile since someone’s called you a party animal, or if trips to the zoo are strictly reserved...

The Ultimate Back-to-School Shopping Lists From Kindergarten to College

If you want to send your kids back to school (or off to college!) with the right stuff, just print out these convenient shopping lists or order it all online. Either way, everything here is broken down by grade for quick reference. Just remember to check with teachers and the school for any special requests or restrictions. -Article from Good Housekeeping Kindergarten Pencil box ($6, amazon.com) Crayons ($3, amazon.com) Colored pencils ($7, amazon.com) Washable markers ($5, amazon.com) No. 2 pencils ($6, amazon.com) Pencil sharpener ($2, amazon.com) Erasers ($3, amazon.com) Glue sticks ($3, amazon.com) Blunt-tipped scissors ($6 for two, amazon.com) Plastic folders ($15 for six, amazon.com) Assorted construction paper ($6, amazon.com) Wide-ruled notebook or pad ($6, amazon.com) Tissues ($5 for three, amazon.com) Backpack ($30, amazon.com) Lunchbox or bag ($16, amazon.com) Elementary School: Grades 1-3 Pencil box ($6, amazon.com) Crayons ($3, amazon.com) Colored pencils ($7, amazon.com) Washable markers ($5, amazon.com) No. 2 pencils ($6, amazon.com) Ballpoint pens ($3, amazon.com) Pencil sharpener ($2, amazon.com) Erasers ($3, amazon.com) Glue sticks ($3, amazon.com) Ruler ($5 for four, amazon.com) Blunt-tipped scissors ($6 for two, amazon.com) Plastic folders ($15 for six, amazon.com) Assorted construction paper ($6, amazon.com) Wide-ruled notebook or paper ($6, amazon.com) Index cards ($3, amazon.com) Tissues ($5 for three, amazon.com) Backpack ($30, amazon.com) Lunchbox or bag ($16, amazon.com) Read...

10 DIY Home Hacks Every 30-Something Should Know

In your 30s? It’s time to master these common at-home DIY tricks. Dear 30-somethings: It’s time to bone up on some common DIY home hacks. Whether you rent or own, these supersimple solutions to common at-home fixes will become your go-to cheat sheet to help you save time — and money. (One more thing: Once your projects are done? Clean up the mess!) 1. Fill old picture holes From dents and cracks to nail holes, most cosmetic wall imperfections (2 inches or smaller) can be tackled with spackle. Use a fine-grit sandpaper or a sanding block to smooth out the edges of the imperfection. Brush away any dust or debris and then use a putty knife to spread the spackle paste into and over the imperfection in one clean swipe. Remove excess spackle from around the blemish using a damp cloth, then allow the spackle to dry completely. Afterward, go back in with your fine-grit sandpaper to lightly sand the area so that it’s level with its surroundings, then repaint as needed. The (really) quick-fix route? If your walls are white, a squirt of toothpaste or a smear of Ivory bar soap can work for the short term. 2. Hang photos (and hooks) without damaging walls Skip hammers and nails in favor of wall-mount strips that won’t leave your walls looking like Swiss cheese. 3M’s line of Command adhesives, for example, maintains the integrity of walls with sticky-backed strips that support posters and framed artwork, while the line’s handy hooks hold handbags, keys, kitchen utensils and towels, jewelry, holiday decorations — the sky’s the limit. Proper prep work pays off here; mind...

Featured Town of the Week – Glastonbury, Connecticut

Local Real Estate Office: Glastonbury Office of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties 2790 Main Street Glastonbury, CT 06033 860-663-3674 >View Listings >Community Information Around Town: The town of Glastonbury, Connecticut is located in Hartford County and has a population of over 34,000 people. Glastonbury is in close proximity to Hartford with easy access to major highways. It is also one of the oldest municipalities in Connecticut and has a rich history. The town is located along the banks of the Connecticut River, and borders East Hartford, Wethersfield, Rocky Hill, Cromwell, Portland, East Hampton, Marlborough, Hebron, Bolton and Manchester. Glastonbury combines the feel of a small town with a bustling town center. Shopping centers include Somerset Square and Fox Run Mall, which offer plenty of dining and unique shopping opportunities. Hiking, fishing, swimming and more outdoor activities can be enjoyed in Glastonbury’s several parks and forests including Meshomasic State Forest, Riverfront Park and Addison Park. Glastonbury has five historic districts and has the highest number of pre-revolutionary homes in Connecticut. It also the home to the nation’s oldest continuously operating ferry. Glastonbury has a high-performing school system with numerous public schools. Travel Times: Hartford: 15 minutes New York City: 3 hours Boston: 2 hours Schools Glastonbury Public Schools Parks/Recreation:  Riverfront Park & Boathouse  Wethersfield Cove Addison Park Cotton Hollow Preserve  Places to Visit: Rose’s Berry Farm Minnechaug Golf Course Rocky Hill – Glastonbury Ferry Glastonbury Historical Society  Links: Town Website Photos:  ...

Ready to take your career in a new direction? Start today, by becoming a Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices REALTOR®.

Jump Start Your Career  Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties and Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Westchester Properties REALTORS® know their local neighborhoods and markets like no others, and they embody the company’s core values of trust, integrity and respect. Amid the fiercely competitive real estate field, they stand out for their impressive depth of market knowledge and strong client service orientation. We welcome you to join us and become part of an elite cadre of sales professionals who are setting new industry standards. We have over 1,600 agents in over 55 offices across Connecticut, New York, and Rhode Island. We’ve received Hearst and Fox CT’s “Top Work Places” award in 2012, 2013, 2014 & 2015. We are part of HomeServices of America, the 2nd largest full-service residential real estate company in the United States. Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices now has a global reach and is implementing a new global expansion program. Berkshire Hathaway is the No. 2 company in Barron’s ranking of the world’s 100 most respected companies; No. 3 in Fortune magazine’s 50 Most Admired Companies survey; and is No. 11 in Harris Interactive’s reputation study of the 100 Most Visible Companies. Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England and Westchester Properties is proud of its involvement and support of The Sunshine Kids. Since 2002 we have donated more than $2,500,000 to the Sunshine Kids Foundation. What other company can offer you the benefit of a local company with the strength of a national and global brand? Contact a local New England Properties or Westchester Properties office for further details....

Things to do this Weekend: August 19th – August 21st Connecticut & Rhode Island

Connecticut Event: Milford Oyster Festival  Venue: Milford Center & Harbor Milford Green & Fowler Field in Milford, CT Date: August 20, 2016 Description: A festival filled with arts and crafts, harbor activities, entertainment for all ages, colorful tents with food and beverages, classic car show, canoe and kayak races, children’s games, national and local entertainers. Event: Bantam Lake Day & Open House Venue: Morris Town Beach in Bantam, CT Date: August 20, 2016 Description: Celebrate Connecticut’s largest lake in this day-long event sponsored by the Bantam Lake Protective Association and White Memorial Conservation Center. The Museum will be open to the public all day free of charge. Event: Taste of the Shoreline Venue: Guilford Green in Guilford, CT Date: August 21, 2016 Description: Family-friendly event where you can enjoy food from local restaurants, shop and gather information from the many vendors, games and fun for the kids. Come and enjoy the fun on one of the most beautiful town greens in New England. Event: 5th Annual Caribbean Carnival & Parade Venue: Harbor Park in Middletown, CT Date: August 20, 2016 Description: Parade kicks-off at 1 p.m. from the Town Green to Harbor Park where the carnival begins with steel bands, costumes, a limbo contests, calypso music and Caribbean food. View more events in Connecticut on CTVisit.com.  Rhode Island Event: Eighty-Ninth Annual Grecian Festival Venue: Assumption of the Virgin Mary Greek Orthodox Church in Pawtucket, RI Date:  August 19 – 21, 2016 Description: Greek Cuisine, dancers,vendors and fun & games. Event: Parlour Jazz Jam Venue: The Parlour in Providence, RI Date: August 21, 2016 Description: For fans and musicians of all ages, the Parlour...

We Are Always Moving

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England and Westchester Properties is your stability in a world where everything is moving. We are a leading real estate brokerage firm with nearly 1,600 Sales Executives in Connecticut, New York and Rhode Island. Selectively chosen by Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices and HomeServices of America; the global reach, financial strength and fresh brand make New England Properties and Westchester Properties the premiere real estate firm in the Northeast. Whether residential, commercial, corporate relocation, equestrian or waterfront living, our company and REALTORS® are local market experts committed to providing exceptional service to our clients. “I would want to be associated with somebody where the financial strength was unquestioned and where the name stood for integrity.” – Warren Buffett, Chairman and CEO, Berkshire Hathaway, Inc. Visit our website to learn more....

What’s Your Color Personality?

Find the perfect color for your next decorating project. We’ll point you to the best palette and give you customized decorating tips on how to use your hue. >>Take the...

7 Best Things About Buying A House In The Fall

The summertime real estate season is as hot as the weather, but you might want to postpone your purchase until fall. For the first time in recent history, October surpassed June as the most popular month to get married. And these autumn-loving brides may be on to something: Although the spring months are notoriously the best time to buy real estate (as well as have a wedding), fall may be the new ideal season to buy a home. Hear us out: One obvious reason is that it’s easier to get from open house to open house without questioning if you’ll need an AC repair ASAP upon moving into that home for sale in Phoenix, AZ. Also, families on a mission to move into a new home before school starts are out of the picture. Besides these two more obvious reasons, here are seven expert insights on why you should consider a fall real estate purchase. 1. There’s less competition Competition for houses drops off in the fall, a time many people consider to be off-season in real estate. But there are still homes for sale — and in some cases, there’s just as much inventory as there was during the spring and summer. “[Fall] means new inventory and repositioned old inventory that did not sell in the prime season,” says Wesley Stanton, a New York, NY, agent with The Stanton Hoch Team. This puts you in a great position to negotiate. “Fall homebuyers should consider [making] lowball offers, followed by more aggressive negotiation,” says Brian Davis, a real estate investor and director of education at Spark Rental. Davis points out...

Featured Town of the Week – Hartford, Connecticut

Local Real Estate Office: West Hartford Office of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties 970 Farmington Ave. West Hartford, CT 06107 860-521-8100 >View Listings >Community Information Around Town: Hartford is the capital of Connecticut. It has a population of over 124,000 and is 18 square miles–making it the fourth largest city in Connecticut. Hartford is nicknamed the “Insurance Capital of the World” being the home to companies like Aetna, The Hartford and Travelers. Other major companies in Hartford include Hartford Hospital, Saint Francis Hospital and United Technologies Corp. Hartford has world class dining, international cultural attractions, award winning entertainment and venues. It is some of the largest corporations in the nation. The city is well-known for its cultural diversity, which reflects in its many ethnically diverse neighborhoods. All of these characteristics have earned Hartford its more modern nickname as “Hartford Has It”. Founded in 1637, Hartford has a rich history. It is the birthplace of the Boys & Girls Club, the first city in the world to broadcast on a FM station and is home to the country’s oldest continuously published newspaper, The Hartford Courant. Hartford is also home to the nation’s oldest public art museum, the Wadsworth Atheneum; the oldest publicly funded park, Bushnell Park and the Mark Twain House where the author wrote his most famous works and raised his family. In downtown Hartford, there are many award-winning restaurants–from traditional American to various ethnic restaurants. There is also a plethora of  entertainment venues including the Connecticut Convention Center, The Bushnell Performing Arts Center, Hartford Stage, XL Center and Infinity Music Hall. Many local shops can be found downtown and in the surrounding areas of Hartford. Hartford, Connecticut...

8 Unwritten Etiquette Rules Every Home Seller Should Know

If you’re trying to sell your home, you’ve probably scrutinized it, staged it, and scrubbed it down from floorboards to rooftop as if the folks from Architectural Digest were stopping by for a cover shoot. OK, so it’s in immaculate shape—but your home isn’t the only thing under scrutiny here. You are, too! That’s right: No matter how nice your home is, your behavior can also affect how buyers feel about making an offer. Last week we told you the secret etiquette rules that every home buyer needs to know in order to nail the deal. Today we’re focusing on the selling side of the equation. Here are the (previously) unwritten etiquette rules sellers should follow to show their home—and themselves—in the best possible light. Leave Sure, you’re dying to know if prospective buyers will love what you’ve done with the kitchen, but Realtors® agree sellers should not be there lurking in the shadows during an open house or showing. “Buyers don’t feel as comfortable when the owner is at the home watching their every move,” explains Nicholas Kensington of Scottsdale Real Estate. “Get out of their way so that they can start to picture themselves living there instead of being spied on.” So take a powder. Or at least hide. Take your pets with you You think Humbert is the cutest labradoodle ever, but not everyone is bound to share that opinion. In addition to having allergies, some home shoppers may not be in the market for a run-in with an animal they don’t know. “Imagine, as a buyer, having the background music set to ‘barking dog’ while you are trying to take in the home’s nuances...

Things to do this Weekend: August 12th – August 14th Connecticut & Rhode Island

Connecticut Event: Summer LobsterBake Venue: Charter Oak Landing in Hartford, CT Date: August 12, 2016 Description: Gather seafood lovers for a fabulous summer treat. Cruise the scenic Connecticut River and savor an evening of bountiful seafood, music and dancing at the traditional New England Lobster Bake. Event: Mystic Blues Festival  Venue: North Stonington Fairgrounds in Stonington, CT Date: August 12 – 14, 2016 Description: The annual Mystic Blues Festival kicks off Friday August 12 with its unique blend of blues and roots-based music at the beautiful North Stonington Fairgrounds. Event: Museum After Dark: Cyber-Noir Beach Party Venue: New Britain Museum of American Art in New Britain, CT Date: August 12, 2016 Description: Cyber-Noir Beach Party, a collaboration with Torrington-based Desultory Theatre Club. The evening features a Robot Dance-Off, music by surf rock band The Clams and Brooklyn-based People’s Champs, tracks spun by DJ zErp, and sweets available for purchase from NoRA Cupcake. Event: The Nutmeg Festival  Venue: St. Stephen’s Church in Ridgefield, CT Date: August 13, 2016 Description: This festival began in 1906 as an apron and cale sale, now it has grown to be one of Connecticut’s oldest church fairs. View more events in Connecticut on CTVisit.com.  Rhode Island Event: Reggae Festival  Venue: India Point Park in Providence, RI Date:  August 13, 2016 Description: Soak up some sunshine and reggae at the Newport Reggae Fest this Saturday — because, like it or not, the days keep getting shorter. Event: Bristol Harbor Festival  Venue: Rockwell Park in Bristol, RI Date: August 13, 2016 Description: The third annual Bristol Harbor Festival kicks off with the Blessing of the Fleet at noon, in...

Could Millennial Homeownership Be on the Rise?

The news has been all gloom and doom when it comes to millennials’ low rate of homeownership. Just last week, we wrote about how the fear of commitment of buying a home with a partner could be one of the reasons many younger folks don’t own the roof over their heads—along with rising prices, high student debt, and hard-to-get credit. But that tide might be starting to turn. A recent Fannie Mae report analyzed U.S. Census data of 20- to 33-year-olds from 2006 to 2014. It followed different age groups through the boom (2006–08), bust (2008–12), and recovery years (2012–14). Of the older millennials, ages 30 to 33, more have become homeowners than were before the crisis. Those ages 28 and 29 are almost back to the same level of homeownership that they had in 2006. Let’s be clear: The report looked at cohorts, which are the same groups of individuals over time. When looking at general homeownership rates, instead of the same group of buyers over time, fewer younger folks owned homes in 2014 than they did eight years earlier. Nevertheless, it’s still encouraging news. “There’s just been such a drumbeat of bad news about homeownership rates falling for young millennials,” says Patrick Simmons, a director of strategic planning at Fannie Mae. But “young adults still want to have that American Dream of homeownership. Finally, the environment is starting to turn around enough to enable them to actually do that.” Read full article on...

Welcoming the World – Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Goes Global

 Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Prepares to Launch Second Phase of International Expansion Wallingford, CT – Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, announced its plans for phase two of its two part international expansion which begin in 2016. In May 2016 phase one launched, a powerful, new property-search platform on its popular www.BerkshireHathawayHS.com website; and a listing-syndication program now broadcasting Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices network listings to 70 real estate websites worldwide. Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices has become the industry’s first site to showcase full US property MLS data in home-search results that translate into 10 foreign languages. Consumers may choose to translate the website in any of 10 languages besides English including Chinese, French (European and Canadian), German, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese (Brazilian and European) and Spanish (European and Latin American). The site translations are performed and checked by linguists so that the translations are accurate and respectful. The site also seamlessly converts currency and measurements. “This global expansion allow us to connect to a broader audience,” stated Candace Adams, CEO of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England and Westchester Properties. “It will provide phenomenal worldwide exposure for our listings.” Gearing up for phase two, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices is exposing franchises to specific markets around the world. The first priority is to support domestic franchises by helping them understand international business. Then, to add brokerages abroad that will uphold the network’s values and meet the demanding standards. To read the full article published by RISMedia, please visit https://www.bhhsneproperties.com/downloads/rismediabhhsgoesglobal.pdf Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England and Westchester Properties is a leading real estate brokerage firm with over 1,600 REALTORS® in Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Westchester County, NY.  Selectively chosen...

Can Moving Really Be Stress-Free? (The Answer Is Yes!)

Ready the packing tape: Here are five tips for a stress-free move. Moving day is exciting: You’re (hopefully) upgrading from your shoe-box-sized New York, NY, studio to a better abode, you get to decorate a brand-new pad, and you’ll have a whole new neighborhood to explore. But moving can also be incredibly stressful. How can you possibly pack up every single thing you own (and then unpack it!)? What if the movers break your one favorite piece of heirloom furniture? What if they hit you with an exorbitant bill? The list of concerns goes on. Since 40 million Americans are expected to move this summer alone, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, it’s time to take some of that anxiety out of the equation. Here are five moving tips to make the task as painless as possible. 1. Hire professional movers You may think you’ll save money by doing it yourself (or begging your friends to help you), but trust us, you’ll pay in other ways — like with a sore back. “However long you think it will take, multiply it by four,” says Josh Cohen, founder and CEO of Junkluggers and Luggers Moving & Delivery, a junk-removal and moving company in Stamford, CT. “Plus, you may need things like a certificate of insurance to move into your new building. That’s something a moving company will have already taken care of.” Before hiring any mover, read their reviews online or check with the Better Business Bureau, advises Cohen. You can also check the U.S. Department of Transportation’s website to confirm a mover’s license is up to date. 2. Size...

The Last Phase of Johnnycake Mountain in Burlington

SHOULDN’T THIS BE YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD?    When a neighborhood is thoughtfully designed – when the homes are beautiful and part of a scenic and private community that adds to the lifestyle of its residents, then that neighborhood is the place where quality of life becomes enhanced – where it’s just better. At Johnnycake Mountain Farm in Burlington, Connecticut, residents feel a special sense of comfort and real belonging, a return to a simpler life. A GREAT PLACE TO BUILD YOUR FUTURE Home sites at Johnnycake Mountain Farm offer endless possibilities for your dream home and lifestyle. From scenic walks on winding roads or the Blue Trail to great schools and year-round community activities. Events like Tavern Day and the annual fireworks on the farm are just the beginning of the lifestyle that the Johnnycake Mountain Farm community enjoys. AN INCREDIBLE PLACE TO LIVE  Johnnycake Mountain Farm is located at one of the highest points in Hartford County. See the Connecticut countryside with views spanning 20 miles out. Located 30 minutes west of Hartford, Connecticut, Johnnycake Mountain Farm is just minutes from Burlington’s scenic town center, the Farmington River, Sessions Woods Wildlife Area, the State of Connecticut’s Trout Hatchery and the Nepaug Reservoir. JOHNNYCAKE MOUNTAIN COUNTRY FARM  Johnnycake Mountain Farm is a “working country farm without the work.” The landholder grows various crops and livestock throughout the 900-acres of irrigated farmland, including gently rolling hay meadows and colorful sunsets. Visit listings &...

4 Foolproof Ways to Spot the Perfect Starter Home

Watch video from Realtor.com. Here’s a spoiler alert: There is no perfect house. Every home will have something that needs to be fixed or repaired. But if you pick the right house, you can makeit perfect. Realtor Tamika Ellsworth explains the four things you should look for when choosing your first home. Watch video from...