Greater Princeton homes for saleBeing a homeowner is exciting and fulfilling, but you may have all sorts of questions about maintaining your home and real estate in general. Browse my posts for tips and information that will help you answer many of your questions.

What should I do before contacting a Realtor?

Guest post by Natalie Jones from

Buying or selling a home is a daunting prospect, even if it isn’t your first venture into the real estate market. There’s long been debate over how much and what exactly you should do before reaching out to a Realtor. Some... Read more »

What really happens if your dryer lint filter gets clogged?

Some of us are conscientious about cleaning our clothes dryer lint filter, while others not so much. After all, ignoring it after one cycle can’t be too bad, right? We’ll get to it next time, right? Unless we forget…

We’ve all read the same warnings about the Apocalypse that awaits us... Read more »

Which school serves the street where I want to live?

Let’s face it, most people consider school districts when they look for a home to buy or rent. A good elementary school and high school for your kids will guarantee acceptance to a great college, leading to a high-paying job, big house and enough money to pay for your nursing... Read more »

How to break a lease gently

Before I begin, let’s make one thing clear: a lease is a contract, and it obligates a landlord to allow tenants to live on a property in exchange for rent in the amount covering the full term of the lease, not just month-to-month. I am in no way suggesting that... Read more »

Please do not email me!

I don’t mean ever; let’s not get drastic. Let me explain.

In the beginning there were telephones. They were big and heavy and clunky and attached to a wall with a wire. To speak with a real estate agent, you had to call and hope that he or someone else was... Read more »

Are two-year leases a good idea?

I hear this question every now and again, and the reason behind it is obvious: landlords prefer stable renters and don’t want to pay a commission every year to find new tenants if they can avoid it, and tenants want the security of a place to live with no rent... Read more »

A new train station is coming!

Many of you know that already. A new train station in North Brunswick along the Northeast Corridor Line, in a new urban village off Route 1 across from the Regal Theater. But for some of you this may be news, and for all of you the timeframe is a complete... Read more »

What the heck is NIXLE, and why should you get it?

Ah, NIXLE. Amidst the vast sea of cell phone features, you are one of my most treasured. Not because you’re cute or clever or fun or the latest fad. But because you’re flat-out useful.

For those of you not yet initiated into the NIXLE world, it’s a means for government agencies—the... Read more »

Why are the sellers moving?

I hear that often. A lot, actually. OK, every blessed time I show a home. “Are these the original owners, and why are they moving?”

I sigh. Mainly because the answer has no bearing whatsoever on whether or not the home is a good fit for my clients. No, the walls... Read more »

Are additional pet security deposits legal in New Jersey?

I see it all too often: a landlord is willing to allow a pet in a rental property, but asks for a pet security deposit in the listing. The logic seems to be, “Well, I’m down with your cat, but you’ll have to put up an additional deposit to cover... Read more »

Making a lowball all-cash offer on a home? Forget it.

All-cash offers to purchase a home are great, except when they’re not. Sure, they sound wonderful—No underwriters! No appraisal! Fast closing! But then the second shoe drops: it’s a lowball offer.

Whether I’m representing a seller or a buyer, I absolutely loathe dealing with such offers. And they are always presented... Read more »

What is a French drain? What’s a sump pump?

First-time home buyers, and even folks who’ve only lived in apartments or condos, frequently see something while touring a home that is unfamiliar. Often they’re curious and ask; sometimes they are shy to admit that there are things they don’t know about. This series of posts will address Things in... Read more »

What's the difference between a colonial, split, bi-level, ranch and cape?

First-time home buyers and those new to the South Brunswick area frequently hear houses described as colonials or splits or whatever. If you are confused about those terms and are too shy to ask, here’s a quick primer on what each type is and the pros and cons of... Read more »

What exactly is a short sale?

No doubt many buyers have heard the term “short sale” in the last few years. Most of them know that it has something to do with the owners not being able to pay their mortgage, the bank getting involved, the price of the home being low and not much else.... Read more »

Will the landlord clean before we move in?

Here’s a question virtually every prospective tenant asks me when I show a rental property: “Will the landlord clean the home before we move in?” That’s a fair question that deserves a fair and honest answer to avoid misunderstanding and bad feelings going forward.

The vast majority of rentals that real... Read more »

When is a bedroom not a bedroom?

One would think that calling a room a bedroom is a formality, and a family can sleep anywhere it can fit a bed, futon or sleeping bag. True, you can sleep in the living room for all anyone cares, but counting actual bedrooms in a home is serious business.

The number... Read more »

Should I rent or should I buy?

This is a question that many home seekers are asking themselves. They may be getting advice from others around them—family, friends and coworkers, but it has to be a decision that is right for them. While there is no perfect answer that fits every situation and personality, some factors are... Read more »

Finishing your basement without permits? Huge mistake!

The single biggest sigh-inducing issue I have when listing a home for sale is finding out that a major renovation—usually a finished basement—was done without township permits. Is it a deal killer and show stopper? No, but it generally means more effort and money to be spent by the sellers.

Let’s... Read more »

What’s the difference between a condo and a townhouse?

For many buyers, this seems hardly a question to ask—everybody knows what a condo is. And a townhouse. Or is it a townhome? Or town house? OK… maybe an explanation is in order.

When a couple asks me if a particular home is a condo or a townhouse, I usually reply,... Read more »

Stage Your Home like a Broadway Producer

You want to sell your house. Or maybe you just have judgmental company coming over whom you’d like to impress—perhaps a snooty acquaintance from your deep past or a mother-in-law. In either case, you wish to magically transform your home into a showplace befitting the cover of a lifestyle magazine... Read more »

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