Kimberley Martin - Homes of New Hampshire Realty



Posted by Kimberley Martin on 1/20/2019

You know your child(ren) more than anyone when it comes to how they learn and the environment that works best for them. So, when it comes to your choosing a new school in a specific district, knowing what will and will not work for your student is essential.

Your studentís needs

Some questions to ask are:;

  • What kind of learning style does the classroom cater to?
  • Does the school have specialists available to give that extra support to students?
  • How do those specialists work? (For example, do they pull students out of the classroom to work individually or in groups?)
  • Are they able to come alongside the student during the classroom learning time?
  • What is the facility/student ratio?
  • How many students are in each classroom?
  • What is the graduation rate? How many graduates pursue a post-secondary? 

A scheduled school tour can answer all of these and any other questions you have to assess if your studentís learning style and that school environment could work well together. 

Priority on curriculum

Another thing to look into is curriculum focus. Many school districts implement various types of educational foci to ensure students attain a specific set of skills. Some examples of focused curricula are STEM, Fine Arts, Music, Honors, and AP courses. STEMóScience, Technology, Engineering, and Mathóhas been a buzzword in school districts recently. Some programs now focus on the STEM curriculum from elementary through high school. Because of the advancement of technology, the job market in these areas is an ever-changing horizon. 

Additionally, fine arts and music can expand a studentís learning. Including a fine arts program can help students with fine-motor skills and develop creativity, among other things. Music education may develop parts of the brain that can help in other areas of study. The global landscape is becoming more competitive than ever. It is imperative that today's students are well prepared as they enter adulthood. Schools offering Honors and AP (Advanced Placement) classes can place your student in the position to take significant advantage of opportunities post-graduation.

Extra-curricular 

Schools, along with the items as mentioned above can enhance the educational experience by offering a variety of before and after-school activities. These can range from widely known sports such as football, basketball, and soccer to less-common sports like lacrosse, golf, and bowling. Clubs can give a great sense of belonging and develop leadership and team-building skill sets. Plus, service projects that improve the surrounding community provide students with the chance to network. Those networking relationships can parlay into opportunities later in life. Finally, with post-secondary schools becoming more competitive than ever, being able to submit an application with a superior balance of academic accomplishment and extracurricular activities can be an advantage.

For more insight on local schools in a potential new neighborhood, talk to the neighbors at the next open house you attend.




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Posted by Kimberley Martin on 1/13/2019

Moving into a new home is an exciting time. There is so much to do with packing up the old place, closing on the purchase, and moving in that you probably havenít spent much time wondering what your new home is like early in the morning, or late in the afternoon. After visiting your new home just a few times during the buying process, you may be unprepared for how your home appears at different times of the day.

Then, one morning, you wake up, look around and think itís still night because you donít see light streaming into your home the way it did into your fourth-floor walk-up apartment. You feel the walls closing in and wonder if it was all a mistake.

Whatís up with that?
If the home is older, it might have fewer windows. In an effort to conserve energy and lower heat and air conditioning bills, older home designs had less glass exposure. Of course, modern improvements to thermal windows makes this less necessary, but if youíve purchased an older home, or are planning to, consider some of these alternatives for brightening up your space.

Lighten up!

  • Remove heavy window coverings and curtains and opt for more sheer versions or install adjustable blinds to let in more light. Not only will this brighten things up, but it will also give your home a modern, clean, minimalist vibe. Lighter colored blinds reflect more light than wood, and lighter natural woods reflect more than darker ones.
  • Shine light on the walls and the ceiling. Adding a couple of floor lamps that direct light up the walls and onto the ceiling can brighten up any room. Or, add sconces to brighten things up in dark hallways and smaller rooms. Choose lamps without shades, or with very light shades to maximize the brightness.
  • Use paint to add light to the room. Interior paints are rated by their LRV (light reflective values). Before choosing a paint color, learn where it falls on the scale (from zero to 100%). Paint dealers can help you choose colors that have a higher LVR so that your home reflects more light. Often, the LRV is listed in the color ďfanbookĒ or on the paint swatch. The higher the value, the more light reflects into the room.
    Consider buying sample sizes and paint swatches on the walls so that you can view the paint in all light ranges throughout the day. If painting swatches on your walls makes you cringe, hang up a piece of butcher paper and paint the swatches on it. That way, you can quickly take it down when your mother-in-law pops in for an unexpected visit.
  • Make glass and metal your friend. Reflective surfaces found in mirrors, blown glass decorations, and metallic art helps bounce light around the room. Placing two mirrors opposite each other gives infinite reflections that open a room or give life to a dark hallway. Or, place crystal vases or brass candle holders in the darker area. Frame photos and art with metallic frames.
  • In the kitchen and bath, add reflective surfaces such as glass or metallic tile to backsplashes and showers. Chrome reflects more that brushed surfaces such as nickel, so opt for those in your bath and kitchen fixtures.
  • If renovations are in your future, consider a more open concept, enlarging windows, or adding skylights to increase your light exposure.
  • Pay attention to your landscaping as well. Older homes often come with mature trees that cast larger shadows. Give yourself the opportunity to experience all four seasons before removing them, though, because that shade might come in handy in the warmer months.

Check with your real estate professional for recommendations on local contractors to help with addressing structural changes and extensive landscaping alterations.





Posted by Kimberley Martin on 1/6/2019

No doubt about it, one of the joys of home-ownership is making your abode reflect your personality. Youíve added an accent feature here and faux finishes there, trendy geometric shutters and some personal landscaping art reflect your funky nature.

You thought this was your forever home and didnít worry about what anyone else might think about it Ö but now, youíre moving on and youíre worried your expressive nature might derail your home sale. Take a moment to assess which of your personal touches should stay with the house and which ones might detract from a potential buyer.

Exterior colors: Many newer communities have color requirements for a homeís exterior, so as long as your home falls in line with the requirements, you wonít need to make any changes. In older neighborhoods, however, there may be no such restrictions. If yours is a particularly bright or stand-out color, you may want to tone it down to blend in more with your neighbors. A better option for attracting buyers includes an exterior free of mold and stains and freshly painted trim. While painted brick is all the rage on home renovation shows, if your brick is not painted, just make sure it is clean. If it is painted, but the paint is tired, chipped or faded, consider giving it a new coat.

Exterior dťcor: Trendy patio hangings, gazing balls, gnomes and birdbaths added to the pleasure you took in enjoying your outdoor space. A buyer with a simpler aesthetic might find these additions distracting. A better option for attracting buyers is curb appeal based on clean landscaping, perennial plants, and flora that doesnít require a lot of maintenance. This provides a cleaner canvas for the new buyerís personal creativity. You can express your personality with a brightly painted front door, an easy fix for a homebuyer to change.

Overgrown landscaping: Depending on the age of your home, and the length of time youíve lived there, the landscaping may need to be scaled back. Larger trees that have grown up near the foundation may cause potential buyer concerns about the costly foundation and structural repairs. Brick walls covered in ivy are beautiful but may make a buyer wonder about whatís hidden under all those leaves. Consult with an arborist about trimming back trees and if you have concerns about the foundation, get it inspected to avoid any nasty contingencies at closing time.

Water features: Of course, some locations demand a pool for summer entertaining, while in other areas a pool or hot tub is entirely optional. It doesnít make any sense to fill in an in-ground pool unless it no longer functions, but above-ground pools can detract from a sale. Hot tubs in less-than-pristine condition can give some buyers pause, while Koi ponds, fountain and other water features may either enhance or detract from your buying demographic. Check with your real estate professional to see what is true in your area.

Try to walk around the exterior of your home with a critical eye:

  • Do some fencing panels need replacing? Gate hinges?
  • Check the exterior knobs. Do they all match? Are they keyed the same?
  • Are windows cracked or do any have broken sealsódo they have condensation inside when the temperatures outside and inside differ?
  • Carriage and porch lights often get neglected. While you may not need to replace them, make certain they are clean and functional.

Ask a professional for guidance with questions about the exterior appeal of your home and the best practices for your home's future sale.





Posted by Kimberley Martin on 12/30/2018

At times, trying to organize and declutter seems like a never ending task. You may have made attempts to declutter without many results. The truth is that with a plan, even the most disorganized among us can get on track to organization and freedom from clutter. Follow some of the tips below to get your home in order. 


Have A Goal


If your organizational attempts never seem to go anywhere, you may just need a goal. The idea is to pick one area and complete it. Organizing a little here and there wonít make any kind of a dent in your organizational needs. It will also look like you havenít done anything to improve your mess. Work on one room, one area at a time and youíll be on your way.


Utilize All Of Your Shelves


Many times the bottom or the top shelf of a closet or utility unit ends up getting unused. The problem could be that the shelves are so tall that no one can reach them and they go unused. You can fix this problem by simply moving the shelving or placing rarely used items up there that can be accessed by a step ladder.


You Have Too Much Stuff And Nowhere To Put It


Rather than buy a bigger house, you might want to go through your stuff. Between you and your children, youíre bound to have quite a few items that can be either sold or donated to a good cause. Consider setting up a donation pile in your house, where family members can put items that they no longer need or use. As an extra tip, donít let the items that are for donation sit there. When the bin is full, put it in your car and head off to the donation center.  



You Have A Lot Of Little Things With Nowhere To Place Them


This is a problem that can be solved by the right containers. If you can find a container thatís best suited for what you need to store, it will be much easier to find and access these items.  


Things Have Sentimental Value


Itís nice to have a few things that you cherish and bring back good memories, but sentimental value items can really get out of hand. If you think of when you last looked at something or how much memory an item truly holds for you, it can be easy to get rid of a lot of things when you put your mind to it. You can ask a friend to help you go through things. An outsider can advise you on what to save and what you should get rid of.


Your Refrigerator Is Gross


If youíre finding a lot of spoiled food and moldy leftovers in your fridge, donít fret. Just develop a clean out schedule to help you get rid of any food that is past its prime. Make it a point to have a designated day of the week to clean out all of your leftovers and expired food to keep the clutter that can spoil at bay.





Posted by Kimberley Martin on 12/23/2018

Believe it or not, the costs associated with selling a house can add up quickly. If a home seller fails to budget accordingly, he or she risks costly, time-intensive home repairs following a property inspection. Perhaps worst of all, this scenario may force a home seller to miss out on an opportunity to get the best price for his or her residence.

With a home selling budget in place, you can increase the likelihood of a profitable home selling experience. If you know what it takes to set up a home selling budget, you may be better equipped than ever before to streamline the home selling process.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you establish a home selling budget.

1. Assess the Condition of Your House

Before you list your house, it helps to perform a comprehensive home assessment. That way, you can identify potential upgrades both inside and outside your house and evaluate the costs associated with these home improvements.

Typically, a home inspection enables you to learn about your house's strengths and weaknesses. This inspection requires a property expert to assess your house and may take several hours to complete. Then, once the inspection is finished, you'll receive an inspection report that you can use to determine which home improvement projects that you may need to complete sooner rather than later.

2. Establish Home Improvement Priorities

Although you might want to give your residence a complete overhaul, there may be only limited time and resources at your disposal. Thus, you'll want to establish home improvement priorities to ensure you can maximize your time and resources.

Think about which home improvement projects are necessary. These projects should rank at the top of your list of home improvement priorities, as failure to complete them may prevent you from optimizing the value of your house.

As you establish home improvement priorities, don't forget to assess the costs associated with various home upgrades. This will help you achieve the best-possible home improvement results without spending beyond your means.

3. Consult with a Real Estate Agent

A real estate agent understands exactly what it takes to sell a home, regardless of the current housing market's conditions. In fact, this housing market professional can make it easy to map out a successful home selling budget and ensure you can quickly and effortlessly navigate the home selling process.

With a real estate agent at your side, you'll receive expert support throughout the home selling journey. A real estate agent will learn about your home and help you identify ways to enhance your residence. Plus, a real estate agent will offer recommendations to ensure you can upgrade your house on a budget.

If you're getting ready to sell your house, it helps to collaborate with a real estate agent. Reach out to local real estate agents in your area, and you can get the support that you need to establish a home selling budget.




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