Real Estate Information

Bergen County Real Estate Blog

Sharon Vallario

Blog

Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 429

Met Life Stadium VIP Tour

by Sharon Vallario

This weekend Met Life Stadium will be opening its doors to the public, offering an up close and personal, behind the scenes VIP tour.  The Met Life Stadium VIP Tour event draws hundreds of attendees each and every year, making it one of winter’s most popular happenings.  It welcomes both adults and children alike to indulge in a once in a lifetime experience. 

Unique in its own right, Met Life Stadium is the only venue that plays hosts to not one, but two NFL franchise teams.  Both the New York Jets, along with the New York Giants both call the Stadium home.  20 football games are played in the Stadium during the regular season and are accompanied by International soccer games, concerts, and other timeless events that are held throughout the course of the year.  This Saturday you and your family have the unique opportunity to take a VIP guided tour of all this incredible Stadium has to offer.  Areas visited will include the Commissioner’s Club, the Toyota Coaches Club, luxury suites, press boxes, and even the team locker rooms.  And yes, you are absolutely welcome to walk out on to the field where some of your favorite athletes play each week.

Admission costs to attend the Met Life Stadium VIP Tour event are $20.00 for adults, and $14.75 for children ages 5-12.  Tickets must be purchased in advance.  To purchase your tickets online, please click here and choose your desired tour time.

So this weekend bring your entire family out to take a VIP tour of the 2.1 million square feet of Met Life Stadium.  Regardless of who your favorite team is, the Met Life Stadium VIP Tour event guarantees to provide something for everyone.  Offering both an exciting and educational experience, the Tour is not one that your family will want to forego!

Saturday January 31st

10:00AM

1:00PM

For more information regarding the Met Life Stadium VIP Tour event, please click here.

Sharon Vallario
www.bergencountynjhomesource.com
Phone: 201.803.1416
Email: sharonvallariorealtor@gmail.com

Feature Properties in Bergen County

Photo courtesy of babyknight/commons.wikimedia.org.

Landscaping Tips for Winter Home Sales

by Sharon Vallario

Without the benefit of landscape in full bloom, a home can take on a drab appearance.  Having your house on the market in the winter means you'll be facing some special challenges. To avoid turning away potential buyers, here are three tips for better winter curb appeal.

Take a good look at areas where ice becomes a problem around your home during a winter storm. While shoveling snow and spreading salt or melting agents can alleviate the problem after it happens, look to more permanent solutions.  You might not have a problem with it, but it can be a negative for the elderly or those with disabilities. Make sure you have good drainage away from your driveway and your house. Have your gutters and downspouts checked and cleaned if necessary.

The longer mulch sits in the sun, the grayer it becomes, to the point you can't even tell it's mulch anymore. If you've got mulch around your trees and shrubs, make sure it's fresh. Rake up the old stuff and put in a layer of color against otherwise dormant landscaping.

Adding a few winter-flowering shrubs and perennials to your landscaping can quickly turn drab into fab. Pieris japonica, the hellebore or Christmas rose, and winter jasmine are some options that can do well in winter.

Selling a home in winter may not be the most ideal time to show off your home's beauty, but you can fix that. Contact me today for a consultation. I will be happy to answer any questions you may have, and/or help you determine the value of your home.

Sharon Vallario
www.bergencountynjhomesource.com
Phone: 201.803.1416
Email: sharonvallariorealtor@gmail.com

Feature Properties in Bergen County

Image courtesy of L'eau Bleue/Flickr.com

Sid the Science Kid Live

by Sharon Vallario

Bergen Performing Arts Center, Bergenfield, New Jersey

This weekend your family is invited to come out and indulge in the wildly-popular Sid the Science Kid Live event.  Based on the highly-revered PBS television series from the Jim Henson Company, Sid the Science Kid comes to life in this incredible theatrical experience.

Sid the Science Kid is an award-winning animated television series aimed at educating children by promoting the exploration and discovery of science.  Utilizing comedy, music, props, and a phenomenal cast of characters, the Live event will take your family on an action-packed journey through the many facets of science that impact our everyday lives.  Interactive games and sing-alongs beckon your family to partake in all of the fun.  Your children will be learning about their 5 senses and how they play a fundamental role in exploring the wonderful world in which they live.  Sid, May, Gabriela, Gerald, and Teacher Susie will all be present, prepared to enlighten your family to the magnificent effects of science. 

Admission to attend the Sid the Science Kid Live event range in cost from $15.00 to $40.00, dependent on your seating selection.  To view a seat chart and to purchase your tickets online, please click here.  There will be two show times from which to choose.  One will begin at 2:00PM, while the second will start at 5:00PM.

Come out to the Sid the Science Kid Live event this Sunday.  The live musical extravaganza will have your family laughing, singing, and learning.  The happening guarantees to provide entertainment your kids won’t soon forget.

Sunday January 25th

2:00PM

5:00PM

For more information regarding the Sid the Science Kid Live event, please click here.

Sharon Vallario
www.bergencountynjhomesource.com
Phone: 201.803.1416
Email: sharonvallariorealtor@gmail.com

Feature Properties in Bergen County

Photo courtesy of Adam Fagen/flickr.com.

Cost-Effective Ways to Stage Your Home

by Sharon Vallario

Your agent most likely will tell you that when it’s time to sell your home, you have to stage your home to make prospective buyers visualize themselves living there. What you may not know, is that staging your home doesn’t mean you have to spend a bunch of money getting prepared. Nor do you have to hire a professional to stage your home for you, which ranges anywhere from $50-$150 per hour!

Let’s talk about a few tips to help you successfully stage your home.

Say Goodbye to Grandma’s Picture (for now)

Snag some free boxes from local stores, buy a $3 roll of packing tape, and start storing all those items that identify who you are and what you love. It may sound silly, but making the landscape more barren, you’re giving prospective buyers the chance to imagine their own things in place.

De-personalizing your home is the most important, and easiest, way to start staging your home to sell.

Garage or Storage Facility

Just because you’ve started to pack up all those heirlooms doesn’t mean people want to see boxes stacked up in every room. If you’ve got a garage, placing all your things in a corner out of the way is an easy way for you to be prepared for a move, as well as keeping eyesores to a minimum.

If you don’t happen to have a garage, getting a small storage facility is also an avenue you can take. Since you won’t be storing furniture for the moment, it’s not out of the question to purchase a $40 small storage facility to keep all of your things in one place and out of the way.

Fresh Coat of Paint

Rearranging your rooms and de-cluttering are two ways to make space seem bigger and more appealing, but slap a fresh coat of paint on your walls and things really start cooking. Fresh, neutral paint makes everything feel clean and new. And at $12-$20 per gallon of paint, and a few extra bucks for drop cloths and paint brushes, you’ll be making your rooms shine with new luster.

Curb Appeal

The only thing more important than cleaning the inside of the house, is dressing up and cleaning the outside. Before people ever step foot inside your home, they’re judging how good the house looks from the road.

Clean your driveway, move the lawn, and plant a few flowers. If possible, pressure wash the exterior to give it a fresh face.

Smells Linger

“The house is beautiful, but it smells funny.” That’s not something you want prospective buyers to walk away saying. Deodorize you carpets and furniture, then use candles, potpourri, etc, to put a lasting smell in the air. You should also remember not to overdo it, you don’t want people thinking you’re covering up any undesirable odors. Contact me today for a consultation. I will be happy to answer any questions you may have, and/or help you determine the value of your home.

Sharon Vallario
www.bergencountynjhomesource.com
Phone: 201.803.1416
Email: sharonvallariorealtor@gmail.com

Feature Properties in Bergen County

Photo courtesy slimmer_jimmer / Flickr

Craft Fair For Autism

by Sharon Vallario

Paramus Catholic High School, Paramus, New Jersey

With Christmas now behind us, it is time to launch the start of the wildly-popular arts and crafts season.  Paramus Catholic High School invites your entire family to come out this weekend and shop at the Craft Fair For Autism event.  The happening will provide a wide selection of unique gift items to choose from.

Due to the resounding success of last year’s Fair, the Paramus Craft Fair is returning for its second consecutive year.  It guarantees to be even bigger and better than in any of years past, offering a much larger assemblage of merchants.  As the name suggests, proceeds from the Craft Fair For Autism occasion will go towards benefitting an array of Autism programs and research facilities.  This year’s Fair will feature more than 25 artisans and crafters.  Included are Origami Owl, In a Pickle, Mary Kaye, 31 bags, Mountain Timber Décor, South Hill Designs, and Partylite, just to mention a few.  One can expect to find a diverse assortment of home décor items, handbags, handmade and vintage jewelry, knitted scarves, hats and mittens, decorative glassware, homemade chocolates, wearables, and much more.  And, in addition to this unique shopping opportunity, food will be available for purchase, along with face-painters to entertain the kids. 

Admission costs to attend the Craft Fair For Autism event is a mere $1.00 per person.  Tickets can be purchased at the door, the day of the event.

So this weekend come on out and shop ‘til you drop, all while benefitting a great cause.  The Craft Fair For Autism event is honored to be the inaugural affair, initiating the onset of the trendy arts and crafts season.  Join friends and neighbors from the community, as this event is sure to draw crowds from near and far!

Sunday January 18th

10:00 AM-4:00 PM

For more information regarding the Craft Fair For Autism event, please click here.

Sharon Vallario
www.bergencountynjhomesource.com
Phone: 201.803.1416
Email: sharonvallariorealtor@gmail.com

Feature Properties in Bergen County

Photo courtesy of Kake/flickr.com.

8 Tips for a First-Time Homebuyer

by Sharon Vallario

When buying a home for the first time, there is not always something that tells you what to do or what to look out for. Buying a home is a big event, and the largest purchase most of us will ever make.

So we’re going to help you out a bit, and show you eight things you absolutely have to know when you’re ready to purchase your first home.

  1. Know your budget. Paying your mortgage is a bit different than paying rent. You now have to figure in escrow, applicable taxes, insurance, and homeowners’ association fees (location dependent). Make sure you’re choosing a house you can afford, because it can be stressful if you’re living “house poor.” It’s recommend you spend no more than 28 percent of your income on housing costs.
  2. Find a well-informed, knowledgeable agent that knows your area well. Knowing if an area is too high or about to fall can save you thousands of dollars. Moreover, knowing how home prices in the area are comparable to what you’re looking at will help you make a better, more informed decision.
  3. Prepare for closing costs, they could cost you a pretty penny. These costs include origination, title, and settlement fees, as well as taxes and prepaid items such as homeowners insurance or homeowners’ association fees.
  4. Credit score matters. Just because you have a qualifying credit score, doesn’t mean you have the best score to help land you the best rate. You should start cleaning up your credit at least a year in advance of making a home purchase, just to make sure you’ve crossed your T’s and dotted your I’s when it comes to financial matters. Get your credit report and start combing through it before it’s too late.
  5. Along with your credit score, it’s good to get all your paperwork in order. Get pay stubs, past W-2s and tax returns, bank statements, and previous address information ready because you’re going to need them. Lenders are going to want to see a lot of your personal information before they’ll give you a sizable loan.
  6. Speaking of lenders, you should always get preapproved. This gives you more bargaining power when it comes to landing that house you just fell in love with.
  7. The government has some programs to help. The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) has a program that insures mortgages for many first-time homebuyers. This will help sway those lenders to back you, and the FHA reduces most 10-20 percent down payments down to 3-3.5 percent. That’s a pocket full of help right there.
  8. Make sure that home buying is the right choice at the right time. If you’re not ready to put down roots, take on new costs, or become your own contractor, then maybe you should hold off on investing in such a big commitment.

If you are ready to buy a home, contact me today. I will be happy to answer any questions you may have, and/or help you find your dream home.

Sharon Vallario
www.bergencountynjhomesource.com
Phone: 201.803.1416
Email: sharonvallariorealtor@gmail.com

Feature Properties in Bergen County

Photo courtesy of Photo Dean / Flickr

Martin Sexton at Bergen Performing Arts Center

by Sharon Vallario

Bergen Performing Arts Center, Englewood, New Jersey

This weekend American singer-songwriter Martin Sexton will be taking to the stage at the Bergen Performing Arts Center.  A must-attend event, Martin Sexton is sure to astound attendees of all musical tastes, as he blends a variety of musical genres into an unforgettable performance.  His eclectic style has recently taken the country by storm, naming him one of the top “new folk” acoustic artists touring today.

Martin Sexton is a self-taught guitarist and singer-songwriter.  His career began at the early age of 14 when he stepped into the rock & roll life, joining a band while in the 8th grade.  But shortly thereafter he realized his own potential and was swayed to embrace his individual artistic talents, veering away from rock and roll. Branching out, Martin Sexton began to create his own style of music to accompany his original compositions.  His range covers everything from gospel and soul, to blues and R&B.  Although he has not abandoned his rock and roll roots, he has chosen to give them a distinct sound, blending them with a country flare.  Martin Sexton’s most recent album, “Mix Tape of the Open Road” is likened to a musical cross-country trip, guiding his listeners through a variety of genre territories.  Songs from this album along with other favorite Martin Sexton classics will all be performed, promising to tender a memorable evening of all across the board, melodic entertainment.

Admission costs to attend the Martin Sexton event range in price from $35.00 to $60.00, dependent on your seat selection.  To view a seating chart and to purchase your tickets online, please click here.

The amazing Martin Sexton will be arriving in Englewood this Saturday night.  He will be bringing his remarkable vocals, mind-blowing acoustic guitar pickin’, and an ovation-worthy performance.  You absolutely do not want to miss out on the opportunity to see the artist that is swooning the nation, with his unforgettable original style. 

Saturday January 10th

8:00PM

For more information regarding the Martin Sexton event, please click here.

Sharon Vallario
www.bergencountynjhomesource.com
Phone: 201.803.1416
Email: sharonvallariorealtor@gmail.com

Feature Properties in Bergen County

Photo courtesy of Owen Walker Brown/commons.wikimedia.org.

Red Flags for Homebuyers

by Sharon Vallario

The sad fact of home buying is that the seller may not always disclose the whole truth about their home. That’s why it’s important to not only hire a professional home inspector, but to understand exactly what they’re looking for, why there could be issues, and when to walk away from prospective issues.

Along with your professional inspection, here is a list of things you should keep on an eye on before you finalize the paperwork.

Starting with the Outside

It’s important to walk around the house and see if there are any cracks in the foundation. If you find horizontal cracks bigger than a third of an inch in size, it could mean that there are substantial structural problems. Yards that slope down toward a house often have water runoff during times of heavy rains that cause further damage to these areas.

We started at the bottom, now it’s time to check the roof for damage. Missing shingles, dips in the roof, or chimney damage can all lead to water leakage and further structural damage. Find out how old the roof is well before it is too late for easy fixes.

And finally, bugs and critters. Check the area around the foundation for bees, bird and mice nests, and anywhere that wood touches the foundation of the house. Termites are devastating to homes, as they lead to often unseen structural damage.

Inside the Home

Each time you step into a room, pay attention to the odor. If you smell heavy amounts of deodorizers, especially bleach, the owners may be trying to hide real problems. Cigarette smoke and pet odors are difficult to get out, but mildew and mold can be even bigger issues.

These could be signs that mean those outside issues are starting to crop up inside, or that there are plumbing issues. If there are water pressure issues, such as old plumbing or low flow, it could cost you upwards of $15,000 to fix outstanding issues.

Some other things to look out for are:

  1. Doors that don’t close, which could indicate structural issues.
  2. Flickering lights that could mean bad circuitry or electrical problems
  3. Leaky water tanks
  4. Stuck windows could lead to drafts and ultimately energy concerns
  5. Carbon monoxide, lead paint, water contamination and asbestos (most all in older homes)

As always, it’s important to have a professional do a thorough check of the home, and to work hand-in-hand with your agent to determine any issues. Small problems now can become big problems later if left unchecked or unseen. Contact me today for a consultation. I will be happy to answer any questions you may have, and/or help you find your dream home.

Sharon Vallario
www.bergencountynjhomesource.com
Phone: 201.803.1416
Email: sharonvallariorealtor@gmail.com

Feature Properties in Bergen County

Photo courtesy of David Train / Flickr

River Vale Farmer’s Market

by Sharon Vallario

406 River Vale Road, River Vale, New Jersey

The Township of River Vale is happy to announce that this weekend they will be hosting the River Vale Farmer’s Market event.  From farm to table, the Market offers all things fresh, healthy, and local.

Due to the brutally cold temperatures, the River Vale Farmer’s Market has been moved indoors, providing a more suitable shopping experience.  And people will be coming from near and far to purchase the bounties grown and produced by local farmers.  One can expect to find a variety of fruits and vegetables, bread, freshly baked goods, gluten-free products, eggs, frozen prepared meals, hummus, homemade marinara sauces, and soups.  Grass-fed beef, chicken, and pork will also be for sale, alongside tapenades, empanadas, and chili.  Amish-baked goods, honey, all natural body products, dried fruits, and nuts are just a few more items of note. The Market invites your family to sit down with the growers, producers, and preparers of the products for sale, being educated to their production practices and techniques.

This weekend bring the entire family out to stock up on fresh foods picked locally just hours ago, not weeks ago thousands of miles away.  Freshness guaranteed!

Saturday January 3rd

10:00AM-2:00PM

For more information regarding the River Vale Farmer’s Market event, please click here.

Sharon Vallario
www.bergencountynjhomesource.com
Phone: 201.803.1416
Email: sharonvallariorealtor@gmail.com

Feature Properties in Bergen County

Photo courtesy of The Meeting Place North/flickr.com.

Tips for Keeping Windows Secure

by Sharon Vallario

Knowing your home is protected against burglars and intruders, can give you great peace of mind. Having a security company install alarms and monitoring devices is one of the best ways to accomplish this. But, there are some things you can do that don’t require a security company. Today, let's look at tips for keeping your windows secure.

Make a List

Take a walk around your house and make a list of all windows and glass doors. Do they have locks? Are they secure in their frames? Are their frames secure? Are the windows hidden from neighbors or the street? Can you see expensive items through the windows? Wherever you see a yes to one of those questions, that's an opportunity for you to make improvements.

Weak Spots

Intruders are going to look for the easiest way to get inside your home. Open or unlocked windows, hidden from observers, on the ground floor, are always their best bet. Beyond that, windows that are easy to break or force open will be a target.

Security Devices

Perhaps the most sure fire way to secure a window is to install a metal window guard. Unfortunately, there are drawbacks, not the least of which is the unappealing look. And of course, you won't be able to get out of a barred window in an emergency situation.

In addition to standard locks, interior pin locks or key bolts are an excellent way to keep windows from moving in their frames. Wooden dowels or PVC pipe can keep sliding doors or windows from being opened. Make sure the frames themselves are not rotten or corroded. Replace any that are with the best quality material you can afford. Tempered Glass and Plexiglas are stronger than regular glass, and should be a serious consideration for your most vulnerable windows. Here are a few additional things to keep in mind:

  • Keep windows visible from the street, and plant roses or thorny bushes under windows.
  • Remember to lock your windows.
  • Check basement and garage windows too.
  • Keep valuable or expensive items out of sight through the windows.
  • Use curtains or translucent security film to block the view inside.
  • Install motion-sensitive floodlights.
  • A dog that barks might be ideal for keeping burglars away.
  • Add inexpensive window break alarms.

Consider these ideas for protecting your home and family. You will rest easier for taking the time to tackle these projects to improve window security in your house. Contact me today for a consultation. I will be happy to answer any questions you may have about buying or selling a home.

Sharon Vallario
www.bergencountynjhomesource.com
Phone: 201.803.1416
Email: sharonvallariorealtor@gmail.com

Feature Properties in Bergen County

Image courtesy of glasseyes view/Flickr.com

Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 429

Sharon Vallario of RE/MAX Elite Associates provides exceptional real estate services in Bergen County, New Jersey specializing in the areas of River Vale, Hillsdale, Montvale, Woodcliff Lake, Westwood, Park Ridge, Ridgewood and Upper Saddle River.  Sharon lists and sells residential real estate, investments properties, vacant land, rentals, as well as secondary homes.

Bergen County, New Jersey real estate and homes for sale in Bergen County
Sharon Vallario, REALTOR®

This website is maintained by Kim Hughes and Company