Yorktown Heights, NY Real Estate News

By Bill Primavera
(William Raveis Real Estate)
In the early days of our marriage, my wife and I lived in a small New York City studio apartment, and we had to make the most of what space we had. Some of our neighbors opened up floor space by sleeping on Murphy beds that folded up vertically into the wall. We opted instead to purchase an extra-long convertible sofa, a Lawson style, upholstered in red velvet, and had that as our regular bed. It followed us through many moves, and the daily ritual of folding the sofa up again early in the morning became ingrained in us.Eventually we settled into our home in the suburbs and acquired a queen-sized bed in its own bedroom. Our old convertible sofa became part of our living room furniture. We imagined that it could still be unfolded for our relatives when they came to visit, but as we alrea...
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By Grant Schneider, Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes
(Performance Development Strategies)
It is a New Years Eve and time for an annual tradition.  Of course, I am talking about the annual ball drop counting down to the New Year.It is great to experience it in person but do you really want to go to Times Square?  In just a few hours they will be locking down the grid and people will be standing there for hours.Wait, there is a better solution!  This year the Yorktown Chamber of Commerce will be sponsoring the first ever Westchester Ball Drop!What could be better than enjoying New Years Eve and also meeting some new friends who can help you group your business in 2016.  So here are the details: Date: December 31, 2015Time: 11:00pm to 12:30amLocation: Corner of Veterans Rd and Commerce St                  Yorktown Heights, NY Happy New Year! Information provided by Grant Schnei...
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By Bill Primavera
(William Raveis Real Estate)
As I observe holiday wreaths dotting the front doors of homes, I am reminded that I’ve written about how important the condition of the front door is when it comes to the sale of a home. I thought about that recently when I opened a couple of doors for showings where the owners might have benefitted from the points I considered.Basically my reasoning has been that the front door can be the key to a home’s personality, either reflecting the condition of the space within…or contradicting it. A beautiful, sturdy door with quality hardware greets the visitor with a confident hello; a weathered door, perhaps out of alignment, with old or poorly functioning hardware, conveys something quite different, something unappealing.I suspect that some homeowners are just not as aware of a front door b...
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By Bill Primavera
(William Raveis Real Estate)
Come holiday time, my wife Margaret and I have always engaged in a practice I suspect many homeowners share: in addition to buying gifts for each other, we also buy gifts “for the home.” Over the course of our marriage, these have ranged from practical choices, such as new appliances, to objet d’art found during our frequent visits to antique stores and auctions. A gift I was considering for this holiday was an antique decorative screen that would have been perfect for covering a central air control panel in our dining room, but Margaret is now more fond of modern décor so I agreed to let it go.After so many years of gifting our home, we’re hard pressed to think of anything more for it, but thinking back, if I had it do over again, I would have invested more in purchasing gifts that wou...
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By Bill Primavera
(William Raveis Real Estate)
While I wear the mantle of The Home Guru, I get practically all of my ideas and advice from others who are specialists in their fields. But most times, the spark of an idea comes right at home, faced with a chore to be done or some small improvement to make life easier or more enjoyable. And frequently, they are suggested by my wife Margaret.Just recently, she came up with a clever organization idea for her walk-in closet resulting from her frustration of having to fumble around in a jewelry chest for just the right necklace, among many she has collected, to match her outfit for the day.To the left of the entrance is a corner with two small stretches of bare wall where she suggested I nail several rows of brass brads from which she could hang her necklaces in plain sight. “See it to use...
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By Bill Primavera
(William Raveis Real Estate)
Steps. Some people seek to avoid them in their housing choices, preferring one-level living, while others insist on having sleeping quarters on a second level. And, the reasons for either preference can be quite different.When I was very young, maybe five or six years old, I had a recurring dream of tumbling down an endless flight of steps, but they were of a rubbery consistency and I just bounced like a ball the entire way. Maybe my subconscious had absorbed the story my mother had told me about how as a toddler I miraculously survived a fall down the steps to a concrete basement floor.The experience never dampened my enthusiasm for a beautiful staircase, however, from the time I discovered that I could enjoy a bumpy ride down the bare wooden steps on my romp from our second floor.When...
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By Bill Primavera
(William Raveis Real Estate)
Normally built-ins are utilized to transform dead zones into functional space, such as under stairs or windows, or between fireplaces and corners, but with our most recent project, there were a couple of other objectives to achieve besides organization, storage and display.Because my wife and I would be moving from a historic home with architectural detail in each room, such as chair rails and corner cupboards, to a new condo where, basically, we were dealing with clean, sleek lines and plain white walls, we wanted our built-ins to add that missing architectural definition, especially in our great room.We also wanted them to have a more organic feeling as though they were planned as part of the construction, rather than an afterthought. In essence, we wanted to treat the room as an empt...
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By Bill Primavera
(William Raveis Real Estate)
I’ll confess that I’ve always been a country boy at heart, having been reared in the Tidewater area of Virginia where, as a boy, I spent most of my time outside and barefoot at that. So, it was a real transition for me when I went to college and lived in a third floor dorm room and couldn’t just swing open the door and feel the lush softness of grass under my feet. Now as I contemplate a transition from a single family residence with a yard to a top-floor condominium in a five story building, I have one particular concern: how would I adjust to living without my own outdoor property? I began my adult life in a series of apartments and townhouses in New York City and Boston, so at least I was not completely new to the notion of my home being “in” a building, but the decades of living on ...
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By Bill Primavera
(William Raveis Real Estate)
The classic sitcom Seinfeld may rival Shakespeare for the number of neologisms it has given us—“low talker,” “regifting,” and “anti-dentite” among them—and it has also brought us the holiday Festivus and the career of The Original Soupman. But there is still one area of the Seinfeld universe that has yet to come into being: I am still waiting for my coffee table book about coffee tables.Okay, granted, Alexander Payne published The Coffee Table Coffee Table Book, a collection of a few avant-garde coffee table designs, but it didn’t seem to measure up to the all-encompassing exploration that many of us envisioned Cosmo Kramer producing. It also did not unfold into its own coffee table shape.The original coffee tables were actually tea tables, developed in the late 18th century in Europe a...
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By Bill Primavera
(William Raveis Real Estate)
Each fall throughout the years, I have given various tips for preparing for the long, cold winter ahead, and among them, here are some that are top of mind.For the lawn, rather than gathering leaves and lawn clippings in bags, cut the leaves while dry with your lawnmower into dime-sized pieces. They will fall among the blades of grass where they will decompose and nourish the lawn over the winter. Bagging them is such a waste of nutrients!Also outside, remember to disconnect all garden hoses and drain the water that remains in the faucets. Water that remains can freeze and cause pipes to burst as the ice expands. If you don’t have frost-proof faucets, turn off the shut-off valve inside your home.Remember, your roof is your first line of defense in protecting your home throughout the win...
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By Bill Primavera
(William Raveis Real Estate)
During the last quarter of the year, any homebuyer prospect can tell you that it hasn’t been a sure thing that you can get the house you’ve set your cap on. In today’s market, if a house is priced right and is in good condition, it doesn’t last long on the market. Further, we’ve seen the return of multiple offers and bidding wars as buyers have returned to the game and inventory has remained tight.According to a report released last Thursday by the Hudson Gateway Association of Realtors (HGAR) which reports on real estate sales in Westchester, Putnam, Rockland and Orange Counties, home sales in this region continued to be rigorous in volume and moderate price changes through the third quarter, representing an increase of 15.2% in home sales over the third quarter results of last year. S...
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By Grant Schneider, Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes
(Performance Development Strategies)
Today is a beautiful Fall Sunday in Yorktown New York and the Yorktown Chamber of Commerce is holding its annual street fair.  The temperature is perfect at 65 degrees. For the first time ever we had a hot dog eating contest and I was one of the judges.  The one I watched ate 8 hot dogs in 10 minutes but the winner ate 12 hot dogs in 10 minutes.  Next I visited the booth of our own Active Rain Home Guru, Bill Primavera.And finally, I stopped by the booth of the Painter in our BNI group Genesis Macedo.  His company is 1 800 PAINTING or genesispropainting.com.nformation and pictures provided by Grant Schneider, Performance Development Strategies.  Would you like to know how to make your local business thrive?  Contact us! 
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By Bill Primavera
(William Raveis Real Estate)
Who says bigger is better? Well, all of us do, it seems, when it comes to living larger and wanting more space, especially if we happen to be downsizing, but don’t want to be fully aware of it.There are countless ideas in decorating magazines, on HGTV and the internet about how to give the illusion of pushing back those walls and elevating the ceiling, but not all experts are in agreement about which techniques work best. It all depends on the mix of color, furniture arrangement, accessories, pattern and texture. But, color is where to start.The rule of thumb for enlarging space has normally been to paint walls in lighter colors. For me, a prime example comes to mind from the play and movie “The Producers” when Max Bialystock and Leo Bloom hit pay dirt and hire their very efficient secr...
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By Bill Primavera
(William Raveis Real Estate)
As I opened the door to my kitchen pantry to grab a quick snack, the thought occurred to me that I’ve lived in homes and apartments that didn’t feature a pantry, and I wondered what I ever did without one.As a kid, I distinctly remember how happy my mother was when she and my dad were able to purchase an older home that featured a “butler’s pantry,” which we hadn’t had before. To me, it sounded like something that only a fancy home with a butler should have.A pantry might be as small as a shelf in a cupboard or as large as a walk-in closet. It is where we keep the foods and supplies used most often. This also is where small appliances will most likely be stored, such as the toaster, kettle, mixer, juicer, and coffee machine. In my case, I also squeezed in a dry mop standing to one side ...
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By Bill Primavera
(William Raveis Real Estate)
When it came time for my friend Abby to have a tankless water heater installed, she got the distinct feeling that it made a difference that she was a woman when dealing with both the manufacturer and the installer.  “I felt that I was being treated differently in both cases because I was asking questions, and the men I was dealing with were wondering why I should have to know.”In the first instance, dealing with the manufacturer of the system, she said, “I wanted to learn about the system because it was a gas unit that was going to be installed in my attic, and I had concerns about how the flame would be protected from that environment. I had to go through three people to get answers to a simple question.“Then, when it came time to have the system installed, I had to deal with a gas com...
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By Phyllis Lerner call 914.438.7556, Corcoran Legends Realty
(Corcoran Legends Realty)
40 Photos Status: FOR SALE Price: $399,888 Address: 164 Somerston Road Type: Residential Style: Ranch Bedrooms: 4 Bathrooms: 2 Suite: Yes Living Area: 1,800 square feet Year Built: 1965 More Details Virtual Tour View Rooms Request More Info | Email Listing Description Beautifully renovated & updated 3/4 bedroom, 2 bath home w. lots of architectural details. Rebuilt from the studs up this house has it all: 1st floor - front porch entry w. large coat closet, new eat in kitchen w. granite counters, huge center island, upscale cabinetry & stainless steel appliances incl. wine cooler, new custom tiled hall bath w. tub/shower combo, master suite w. new marble clad en suite bathroom, two more bedrooms, closets, spacious living room w. beamed vaulted ceiling & a wall of windows overlooking the...
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By Bill Primavera
(William Raveis Real Estate)
One big question mark remains in the decoration of the great room of our new home and it doesn’t seem likely to be answered any time soon. That is, the choice of chandelier to be hung in our dining area.For the first time in our long marriage of agreeing over most things that surround us, my wife Margaret and I are not in accord about what device of illumination should hang above our heads as we entertain guests at a good meal. Right now, there is just a small ceiling fixture that came with the condo that provides light from the 9-ft. high ceiling above, but just empty space from there to the table top, with nothing decorative to fill the space in between.Margaret wants something airy and simple, but is not sure what. I know exactly what I’ve wanted for a long time and it’s not simple. ...
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By Bill Primavera
(William Raveis Real Estate)
Anna Maroselli could write the definitive book or teach a master class on preparing a home for sale. While normally it is a matter of a month or two from the time a seller and realtor engage in the process of listing a home, there was a gestation of more than two years from the time I was called by Anna for a comparative market analysis until last week when her six-bedroom, raised ranch in Yorktown Heights was listed.In the intervening months, there was a methodical system of activity that might have been ordered by a drill sergeant. “One of my favorite expressions is ‘train hard, fight easy,’” she told me early in the game, noting the origin of the quote aptly as Alexander Suvorov, an 19th century military leader in the Imperial Russian Army.From the first of my two interviews with her...
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By Bill Primavera
(William Raveis Real Estate)
Do more people than not get attached to their homes to the point where they suffer a sense of loss when it’s time to move on? It’s a question I’ve been pondering lately and one that once again I’m facing myself. My home is on the market for the second time in two and a half years. Last time, I had a problem detaching from it, surprising enough. But do I this time? Not at all. This time I’m ready.One of my oldest but most vivid memories about attachments people might develop to a home happened on the day my best buddy from college was getting married. I had travelled to his hometown and we were in the home where he had grown up from the time of his birth. He had invited me there to spend the night after his bachelors’ party and to dress in our tuxedos prior to the ceremony. As we were he...
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By Bill Primavera
(William Raveis Real Estate)
The caller was interested in an historic Sears-Roebuck Catalogue house I have listed in North White Plains, but he wanted to make sure that it was not “purple” as he said it appeared to him online. “If it’s purple, I’m not interested,” he said, “because to me, purple means ‘death!’”“It’s a very nice blue-grey, and not purple, I can assure you,” I affirmed. “It sure looks purple in the photograph,” he persisted. Okay, this is not going to be a phone call based on objectivity, I thought, so why not go along with it and give the guy the kind of playful discourse he was obviously seeking. I continued the discussion by pointing out that some people consider purple the color of royalty, and I told him about a celebrated house in my hometown of Yorktown painted totally in shades of purple whic...
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