Blog :: 09-2015

Welcome to our blog! Here you will find posts about can't miss properties, local events, and more! Here at Maple and Main Realty we pride ourselves on our knowledge of the Northampton area. Feel free to leave a comment, we would love to hear from you! If you have any questions, don't hesitate to contact us

68 Pine Grove, Unit 68 in Ice Ponds Wood, Amherst MA

68 Pine Grove is a lovely 3 bedroom, 2 1/2 bath condominium in the Ice Ponds Woods condomium association in South Amherst, MA. This condo complex is in a bucolic setting - wooded and private, and abutting conservation land such as Wentworth Farm. 

The owners of this condo have made many updates, including:

- New kitchen, including quartz counters, high end stainless appliances, tile backsplash, new sink and lighting. 

- Updated 1/2 bath and laundry. Closed off entrance abutting kitchen and moved to living room

- Updated master bath and shower

- Newly laid outdoor patio

- New landscaping added to outdoor area

This unit features high ceilings on both floors, and custom double pane windows throughout- allowing for a treehouse-like feel; cozy and intimate. While this is an established condo complex, it's rare to find a unit on the market in similar condition to this - with the original charm and character intact, but with many updates throughout.

Offered at $234,900, contact Julie Starr to set up a showing or for further information.

 

Lovely outdoor space, surrounded by mature trees for shade and privacy

 

Exposed post and beam construction. Tastefully updated cook's kitchen with dining area (and space for a baby grand piano!)

 

Newly laid private outdoor patio for al freso dining, or just relaxing on a summer day

 

Spacious living area, with access to the first floor powder room/laundry room

Clean That Roof!

As realtors, we can all confirm that condition of the roof of a house is a hot bed issue for home buyers. Maintaining the life of your roof is important for protecting your investment, whether you plan to stay put in your house for good, or whether you intend to sell at some point in the future. Living in the Northampton MA area, our homes go through many types of wear and tear with the changes in season. From the potential for ice dams in winter (and roof leaks), to the potential for algae growth in humid weather, or on shaded areas of your roof.

The following article from the Daily Hampshire Gazette, written by Angie Hicks of "Angie's List" - addresses the issue of algae growth on your roof, and how to remove it. Good stuff!

 

By ANGIE HICKS


You may have the most attractive landscaping, beautiful windows and charming mailbox, but black streaks running down your roof can ruin your home’s curb appeal.

What causes those dark marks, and what can be done to eradicate them?

Roof experts who are highly rated by members of Angie’s List say the source is an algae called Gloeocapsa magma. And depending on the age and condition of your roof, cleaning may be the most cost-effective solution, since it’s about 5 to 10 percent of the price of a roof replacement, which can be as much as $10,000.

Algae-caused marking isn’t preventable but can be removed, though not always permanently. The algae survive through photosynthesis and by feeding on limestone filler used in asphalt shingles.

Black marks became a problem about 20 years ago, when manufacturers began adding limestone granules to add weight to material used to coat shingles.

Roof experts tell our researchers that though other components are being added to shingles to hinder algae growth, they still get calls to deal with black marks on relatively new roofs. They say that while shingle manufacturers offer products treated with copper or zinc to inhibit algae growth, their effect wears down over time.

Most black streaks form on the northern slopes of roofs, where it’s darker and wetter - ideal for algae growth. 

Areas of the country with low humidity have fewer instances of roof streaks, while the problem is relatively common in the Southeast, where it’s more humid and warm. 

The algae appear blue-green when the organisms form an outer coating to protect themselves from ultraviolet rays. Algae turn black when it decays.

While the dark streaks are unsightly, experts tell our team that the greatest danger to the roof is from moisture retention or root damage that algae and other life forms can cause. Also, algae and fungus can grow together to form lichen, the roots of which can wrap around and feed on the granules covering the shingles. Once established, lichen is not easily removed. Even if it dries out, it can come back to life with the next rain. Scrubbing or power washing lichen will only cause more damage.

Before determining whether having your roof cleaned is the right option, be sure you have a sense of your roof’s age and condition, and compare costs accordingly. 

A cleaning can cost around $200 to $1,500, depending on the size of the roof, its pitch and height.

When hiring a company to clean your roof, consider this advice, gathered by our research team, which talked to multiple highly rated roofing experts:

? Make sure the cleaners don’t use high-pressure washing systems, which can remove granules coating shingles, and lower their life expectancy.

? Ask what kind of cleaning solution the company uses. One highly rated roofing expert said he uses a chlorine-based chemical wash with a soaping agent. Also, make sure the company has a plan for preventing possible damage to your home or landscaping from runoff. That same roofing expert said he has one worker apply the cleaner while another saturates nearby areas with water to prevent damage.

? Ask how long the cleaning method should keep the roof algae-free. A range of two to five years is normal.

As with hiring any contractor, ask family and friends for references or check online consumer reviews from a trusted source, get several bids, seek and contact references, and confirm liability and workers’ compensation insurance.

And then, prepare to once again enjoy how your home looks without those dark ugly roof streaks.

Angie Hicks is the founder of Angie’s List, a resource for local consumer reviews on everything from home repair to health care.

 

Where to Put Your Food When you Move!

Do you ever open your cabinets and wonder how the wide array of arcane canned goods found it's way into your pantry? We seem to collect way more food than we could ever hope to eat as time progresses. Every time my husband and I have moved house, and we have moved quite a few times (given that I am a realtor), we have a party where every guest is expected to take some food items with them when they leave. Even our most recent move from Northampton MA to nearby Florence MA included the requisite "take what you can carry" party. It's a great way to make sure that food does not go to waste. My husband sent me a link to this fantastic blog by MoveForHunger.com about what to do with your non-perishable foods when you move! What a great resource. It sounds as if we need to put a bug in the ear of our local moving companies to make sure they provide this invaluable service!

Read on here for more information!

MoveForHunger.org Fights Food Waste on Moving Day

 
Move For Hunger has rescued over 4 million pounds of food that would have otherwise gone to waste. (Image: Move For Hunger)

Move For Hunger has rescued over 4 million pounds of food that would have otherwise gone to waste. (Image: Move For Hunger)

Traveling through India with a ripped bag and worn out shoes was the first time my perception of waste was challenged. I was thrilled to toss away my holey shoes until the handiwork of thrifty street entrepreneurs caught my attention. They presented another option. For a few rupees, I handed over my soon to be garbage and stood agape as new soles were cobbled and special stitches woven to make my shoes firm and my bag as reliable as ever.

Dan's shoes were restored to as good as new and saved from winding up in the trash

Dan’s shoes were restored to as good as new and saved from winding up in the trash (Image: Dan Ratner)

With a few simple (yet adept) movements my potential trash became a renewed source of value. My perspective was shifted, and so began my upward spiral into the anti-waste movement – with a particularly passionate focus on minimizing food waste.

My Experience With Food Waste Led Me to Move For Hunger

As Director of Operations, I have seen first hand the impact that a shift in perspective paired with a simple solution can create. Move For Hunger is a hunger relief non-profit organization that partners with movers, realtors, and relocation professionals to collect unwanted non-perishable food during a move, and deliver it directly to a local food bank. We provide support to encourage our socially responsible partners to make food collection part of their normal business process.

Here’s How It Works:

Step 1 – Mover is hired for a residential move or a company relocation

Step 2 – During the moving process, the Mover gives the client personalized Move For Hunger materials to educate client about the local need and how to become part of the solution

Step 3 – Client gives the mover any unopened, non-perishable food that would otherwise be wasted

Step 4 – Mover delivers the donated food to a local food bank

Step 5 – Move For Hunger shares & reports the awesome work done by the company and the positive impact made within the community

With this simple three step process, the hard work is taken out of donating food (Image: Move For Hunger)

With this simple three step process, the hard work is taken out of donating food (Image: Move For Hunger)

Move For Hunger transforms moving day into an opportunity to reduce food waste and feed the hungry. During the relocation process, customers that would otherwise toss food away are now encouraged to simply put it aside and have it donated to a local food bank.

Since its start 5 years ago, Move For Hunger has rescued over 4,300,000 pounds of nonperishable food. This success is due to our partnership with over 600 Movers, thousands of Realtors, and major relocation professionals spanning all 50 states and Canada. It’s a noteworthy feat I’m always more than ready to brag about.

Move For Hunger Enables People to Make a Difference

Many people want to help, they just don’t know why or how (and with the how, the simpler the better). The Move For Hunger process is a simple addition to something that already exists. Educating the client on a problem then giving them the tools to make a difference makes the process simple and easy. We’ve seen this with a variety of large (and small) scale initiatives across the country. Once it becomes apparent that people struggling to have food on their table can be helped in a direct and simple way, more hunger fighting opportunities begin to spring forth.

Here are a few events that epitomize the Move For Hunger perspective shift:

Mergenthaler Mover’s : Montana Fill-A-Truck Campaign

Mergenthaler’s began as an actively engaged awesome Move For Hunger mover. However, they didn’t stop there. They decided to take Montana by storm by hosting the largest food drive Fill-A-Truck in the state and have been going strong since 2013! A Fill-A-Truck is when a truck is parked outside of a grocery store with the goal of filling it with food to donate locally. They filled 4 trucks with donated food and were able to collect over 15,000 pounds of food for families during the holiday season!

Real Estate Fall Food Fight

With our home base in Asbury Park, NJ it only makes sense to rile up a bit of good spirited competition among our socially inclined partners. The Real Estate Fall Food Fight was a one month event that vied our Real Estate partners against one another to collect $500 and 500 lbs of food. Our Real Estate Program is focused on education and awareness as realtors educate their clients about the local need and then encourage them to donate during the move.  Another example that reminding the client how an easy shift in actions (to donate not discard) can spark massive change.

The Move For Hunger team make it easy for your unwanted food to get to a local food bank

The Move For Hunger team make it easy for your unwanted food to get to a local food bank (Image: Move For Hunger)

Birthday Cans Instead of Birthday Candles

Xavier, a passionate high school student, has donated his birthday for the past 5 years to raise food for his community. A major benefit of having an incredible fleet of socially responsible movers is that they are willing to donate their time to help support food drives. Move For Hunger can drop off collection boxes before the event, pick-up the donations after the event, take them to a food bank and report back the total amount that was collected. We do all the heavy lifting – and we’re thrilled when individuals and companies take advantage of this to become Hunger Fighting Heroes in their communities!

Get Involved & Start Your Own Food Drive or Fundraising Event

What makes each of these events so powerful is that they encourage a company or an individual to have a perspective shift. Viewing cans as nothing more than added weight to discard is instead transformed into an opportunity to provide valuable nutrition for a neighbor in need. The shift can lead to more food donations (which we love) or even permeate into other walks of life. A company may transform its culture by adding food drives and community engagement as part of their primary success metrics. An individual may be more apt to help knowing that you don’t have to solve the whole problem to make a tremendous difference.

This Change of View Opens Our Eyes to the Value of the Resources Around Us

Simple examples like being more mindful while food shopping, fixing your zipper rather than throwing away your jacket, even squeezing a few extra uses out of your toothpaste tube, are all benefits that come from a shifted perspective. As long as we can continue to find new ways to share that value with others, we’ll make our lives (not to mention the world) brighter and more remarkable. Please share your suggestions on how to add a simple step to a process to add value and benefit others.

Do you know any movers, realtors, runners, or friends that want to get involved? Check us out and become a part of the Move For Hunger Team!

Posting Guideline – Opinions expressed are solely those of the contributors and implies no endorsement by WeHateToWaste. Stories published on WeHateToWaste.com are intended to prompt productive conversations about practical solutions for preventing waste.