Lynne Hagopian - Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage



Posted by Lynne Hagopian on 2/3/2020

Photo by JayMantri via Pixabay

When you buy a new-to-you home, foremost on your mind is changing everything to make it yours. You paint the inside and even remodel the kitchen. A priority is removing the old carpet and installing new flooring. Lower on the list are changes to the exterior, but they are on the list. If you bought the house from family or people known to you, they might want to come check out the changes you’ve made. Sometimes, though, you notice a former owner driving by, and because you don’t know them, you don’t know what to think.

Should You Worry?

It’s doubtful. People move from a home for many reasons. Sometimes, it’s because they’ve improved their income and moved to a bigger home. Other times, the move was due to financial hardship, divorce or death. In the case of the latter three, the former owner naturally needs a time of grieving to deal with their loss and the home may represent a place of happiness for them. Or, it may be a reminder of their lost spouse or family member. Some folks like to drive by the homes they’ve lived in merely because they’ve moved away and are home for a visit. If the former owner built the house, seeing it may evoke a sense of pride that something they created still stands and shelters another family. If the house belonged to their grandparents or parents, they may simply need to see it to be in contact with their roots now and again. Humans form an emotional attachment to their homes and, even though they’ve moved on, might find it hard letting go.
Some families stay in the same neighborhood when they move so that children remain in the same school. Or, they may still have family and friends in the neighborhood, so driving past is incidental. It could simply be happenstance that they must drive past the old home to get to the new.

Does It Matter?

It might be worth your time to meet them and find out. They may have stories about the house that inform how you proceed with a remodel. What you thought of as an odd niche may be a boarded up dumbwaiter or fireplace. Each tree in the yard may have been planted at the birth of a child. Knowing your home’s history might give you a sense of its place in the community and even make it more valuable when you go to sell it.

Safety First

If you feel unsafe, for any reason, contact the police. There’s likely no cause for concern. In fact, you may find yourself doing the same thing when you move away. Make the effort to change a few things like painting the front door a vibrant color. Or, change out the garage door. Rearrange the flowerbeds and plant some bushes or a hedge. The more it visibly becomes your home, the less it will seem like theirs.
If you’d like to meet the former owners, talk to your real estate agent to see if they can arrange a meeting for you. Who knows, they might have a wealth of information that saves you from renovation mistakes down the line.




Categories: Uncategorized  


Posted by Lynne Hagopian on 11/14/2016

Gold in the BankOur homes contain almost everything of value to us. In a way, your home is like a giant safe that you want to protect from break-ins, floods and fires. Unfortunately, you can't always be one-hundred percent sure that everything in your home is protected from these hazards. For an added layer of security for your most important belongings, buying a home safe is an excellent option. However, there are many different types of safes across a large price range. Knowing which one fits your needs but also your budget can be complicated. What's more, deciding what items you own should be kept in a safe is a process all of its own. But we've got you covered. In this article, we'll talk about the types of safes and some items you should keep inside of them.

Safe Categories

Not all safes are created with the same purpose. Some may be designed for you to be able to open from your smart phone, whereas others are created from an everyday object, such as a book, to be hidden in plain sight. Others might be small and fireproof but not very effective against burglars who can easily carry them out of your home. When shopping a safe and thinking about size, remember that you should probably buy a safe that is a bit larger than your current needs since you will probably someday add items to your safe.   Here are the main types of safe to help you choose which one is right for you:
  • Water-tight and fire resistant. If you have important documents, jewelry, or electronics that you want to keep secure, a weatherproof safe is the way to go. For added security against floods, keep the safe away from areas that are prone to water damage like basements. These are the most common safes and are a great choice.
  • Diversion. Diversion safes often only have minimal security measures (locks), if any at all. Their main strength is that they can be hidden in plain sight, such as being a book inside a bookshelf.
  • Wall-installed. You've probably seen this type in the movies. They are installed into a wall and can be hidden behind objects. These have the advantage of being hidden like a diversion safe, but also use thick metal and complex locking mechanisms. But be prepared to pay a hefty price for all those features.
  • Anti-burglary. These safes are very difficult to break open. They have complex locks and thick metal with few vulnerabilities.
  • Object-specific safe. Some safes are designed just for weapons, others designed just for jewelry.

What to keep safe

Generally speaking, anything of value to you that isn't easy to replace can be kept in a safe. Depending on how easy it is to access your safe and how often you use the item, you may decide it's simpler to leave the item out of the safe. However, you can always use the safe to secure backups of documents and files. Here are some ideas for items to keep in your safe:
  • Passports
  • Birth Certificates
  • Social security card
  • Spare keys
  •  Wills
  • Flash drive containing important photos and documents
  • Important passwords
  • Jewelry
  • Family heirlooms
  • Weapons and other dangerous objects
 




Categories: Uncategorized  


Posted by Lynne Hagopian on 9/19/2016

Working in your attic may not be a chore you perform frequently but it is one that must be done on occasion. Whether you use yours as a storage space or are performing an energy assessment in your home, safely accessing your attic should be a top priority. Below are some tips you can practice the next time you need to go up into the attic to ensure a safe working experience. Before you begin working make sure you have dressed appropriately. Wear a long sleeve shirt tucked into pants and gloves to avoid materials sticking to your skin which can cause irritation. You will also want to wear a dust mask and protective eyewear to avoid inhaling airborne fibers or other harmful debris that could be airborne in your attic. Attics can house mold and mildew among other hazardous materials that can bring you harm and/or make you sick when not properly protected against them. If your attic requires a fold-down ladder to access it check that the ladder is safe to support your weight. Look for any missing or loose screws that are intended to hold the ladder together and tighten/replace them before using it to get into your attic. You will be climbing up and down it as you work so you want to make sure that it will be safe to use. Adding a railing around the opening of your attic access will also add extra safety measures against falling. If your attic is unfinished and/or has potentially unsupportive flooring consider installing a safer floor by laying plywood down. Add walk boards or temporary platforms to an unfinished attic that doesn’t require permanent flooring. Always be cautious of where you step to avoid stepping on wires, ductwork or areas lacking trusses and joists. This precaution will save you from accidentally breaking through the ceiling which will put you at risk of serious harm and some major repairs. You will also want to be aware of any roofing nails poking down or old faulty wiring that requires repair. Be sure to check for signs of any animals that may have decided to move in over the winter months. If you do discover unwelcome tenants take the proper course of action by hiring a professional to rid your attic of them safely for both you and them. Some animals, like bats, may be protected by federal law so you will want to rid your house of them responsibly. When you are finished working in the attic for the day be sure to change and wash your clothes to avoid spreading hazardous debris over the rest of your house. Before you begin working spread an old sheet under the hatch and vacuum the surrounding area afterward for easy clean up. Attic safety practices are crucial to avoid harming yourself and preventing damage to your home. With some simple preparations and an active awareness, you can get chores done in your attic effectively and safely!




Tags: home safety   safety   attic  
Categories: Uncategorized  




Tags
UA-143044978-1