Lauren Davis
REALTY EXECUTIVES Boston West | 508-254-0449 | [email protected]


Posted by Lauren Davis on 3/31/2021

Photo by Victor Rodriguez on Unsplash

It's no secret that people are living longer and maintaining more active lifestyles as they age. While the ultimate goal is to stay agile and able, we all know that at some point, we may not be able to do what we once could. 

Accessible home can help us continue to live comfortably and independently with minimal assistance. So whether you're planning on aging in place or welcoming your aging parent into your home, check out the three primary types of accessible designs along with specific features to look for.

1. Accessible Design

A home with an "accessible design" meets government requirements in your area. These may be established by HUD or the state. But they usually dictate things like:

  • Number of steps into the home
  • Whether countertops are wheelchair accessible
  • Doorway width
  • Some states may require bathtub handles and lower light switches. Pedestal style sinks would allow a person in a wheelchair to roll up under the sink to reach the water more efficiently. 

    2. Adaptable Homes

    Very able people understandably may not want to live in an accessible design. That's because, at times, it can make things less convenient for them and may look "clinical" rather than aesthetically-appealing. It all depends on your priorities. For example, often accessible homes sacrifice storage space for knee room under counters and sinks.

    Adaptable homes are built in such a way that they can adapt to changing needs. For example, under-counter cabinets may be easily removed if someone in the house starts using a wheelchair.

    These homes often have structural features that are accessible by nature, like wider doors and open floor plans. They may also have hideable accessibility features like a detachable grab bar.

    3. Universal Design

    The idea behind universal is that it meets many kinds of needs and is usable by most people. Because it's not specifically-designed around a particular type of disability, the design may not be ideal for any one person. Universal plans work well for multi-generational or multi-ability level households.

    A great example of universal design is moving several outlets two to three feet above the floor so that you don't have to bend over to plug something in. 

    A universal home may also be generally accessible but have one suite that is more accessible than the rest of the house. It may have one bathroom that has a walk-in tub, grab bars next to the toilet. You may have a ramp on one of the entrances. 

    Choosing an Accessible Home

    When selecting an accessible home, it's important to realize there may be overlap in how these terms are used. Inspect the home yourself to see if it meets your needs now and into the future. For more tips for the savvy homebuyer, follow our blog.




    Categories: Uncategorized  


    Posted by Lauren Davis on 5/15/2019

    When homes go ignored, issues start to develop and once easy to solve problems will become huge, expensive hassles. Every house will develop some item that you'll need to attend to, and there are steps you can take today to minimize or even avoid these problems. Heed the following do-it-yourself tips, and you will keep your house looking great and save money in the long run.

    1. Periodically Inspect Your Roof - Take note of areas where roofing shingles are damaged, loose or missing as well as shingles that are flapping in the blowing wind. These indicators tell you that your roof is in need of immediate repair so your home can maintain its protection from the elements.
    2. Choose roofing tiles that are fire-resistant and tough enough to hold up under the impact of hail. Polymer, slate and shake shingles are your best choices.
    3. Pressure Wash Your House Siding Annually - With time, algae and dirt build up on your house siding, making it appear old, cruddy looking and uncared-for. Wash any dirty areas of your siding with detergents and a pressure washer, taking care to thoroughly clean the areas where a lot of accumulation is present. Avoid using a pressure washer to clean your windows and trim, since the high pressure can easily damage these areas. While you are cleaning the siding, check for any warping, insect damage, buckling or paint cracking that may have developed over the past year. Quickly repair any damage you find.
    4. Check Your Gutters Often - Gutters are designed to direct rainfall away from your house, so keep them clean. Inspect your gutters regularly for any blockage (especially from leaves), cracks or even holes that may be hindering proper drainage. Your gutters should be appropriately sloped and firmly attached to your home as well. To prevent damage, ensure that the water that drains from your rain gutters directs away from your home and any landscaping you have around your house.

    As any homeowner knows, when a home goes neglected for long, things will go awry. Don't wait until it's too late to deal with any small problems that develop in and around your home. Again, minor issues that are easy and cheap to fix will likely develop into big problems - ones that are difficult and expensive to fix - so give your home and your pocketbook a break and repair the small issues as soon as you find them.




    Categories: Uncategorized  


    Posted by Lauren Davis on 5/1/2019

    You thought that working from home was the ideal solution to your crazy daycare and commuting routine. You discussed it with your partner for weeks, spent hours convincing your boss, and her boss, and here you are in your pajamas two months later wondering what you've done. The house is a wreck. There are dishes in the sink. You haven't had a shower in what seems like days (it was only yesterday). The dirty laundry has piled up so high that it spills out the door of the laundry room … and the baby's crying … and the phone's ringing … and that project is due! 

    How could such a great idea, that works perfectly for so many others, be such a disaster for you?

    Take a deep breath! Let it out slowly.

    The truth is, most first-time telecommuters or from-home contractors experience complications in the first few months. Many do not realize that their commute time indeed was productive in a way because they could plan and focus in their heads so that they can start right in a soon as they reach the office (after that cup of coffee, though). At home, you tend to jump right in, directly after you've thrown in a load of laundry, the baby's fed—and you hope will play happily for the next 45 minutes—and do the dishes. The first few days go so great that you feel entirely productive. You got more work done because you didn't have that side trip to daycare on your commute to the office.

    Within a few weeks or so, however, this house of cards tumbles down. Now, you not only have a chaotic household, but you're also feeling less productive than you did in the first week and you hope no one wants to Skype because you don't look or feel like the professional you once were.

    Get back that commute time

    Reclaim your commute time. Even though the commute is only from your kitchen to your home office, take back the 20-30 minutes you need to get your head in the game. Sit down with that extra cup of coffee and mentally run through your to-do list.

    Become hyper-focused

    When managing a workload with at-home parenting, control the time baby is asleep or occupied by focusing entirely on work. The baby doesn't mind you folding laundry while he's awake. Do household chores when you're in mommy or daddy mode, but as soon as the baby is asleep or with someone else, focus only on work.

    Your original plan was a good one. It will work, just a little differently than you'd planned.

    If your home isn’t suited to a home office, ask your real estate professional to show you some options in your neighborhood.




    Categories: Uncategorized  


    Posted by Lauren Davis on 5/3/2017

    Homeowners have become increasingly aware of the dangers that face them and their homes. More Americans than ever lock their doors at night and own home security systems to protect themselves and their homes from intruders.

    However, one danger that many homeowners aren’t prepared for is posed by scammers. These scammers are innovative and use tools like the internet and the semblance of authority to their advantage. What’s more, the nature of their scams is always evolving.

    In this article, we’ll cover some of the most common scams affecting homeowners. We’ll talk about how to protect yourself from these scams and recognize them so that you and your home can avoid potential disaster.

    Foreclosure scams

    There are few things more concerning to a homeowner than the thought of losing their home. Scammers take advantage of these fears by promoting “relief programs” that promise to reduce your monthly payments or otherwise protect you from being foreclosed on.

    The scam here is that these companies might not help you at all but will still charge for their services. They’ll often browse public foreclosure notices or post ads online. When they reach out to a homeowner they’ll do so via a letter that seems personal and professional. They could also call your phone or send you an email offer.

    By U.S. law, such companies cannot charge you for any services unless they successfully help you gain relief from your lender, and even then you must still accept the offer before the relief company can ever charge you.

    Home maintenance and repair

    One of the more dangerous scams on our list involves something seemingly innocent--a knock on your door to let you know your roof needs repair. While some startup companies may go door-to-door offering their services, most of the time this should send up a red flag. There are a few potential scams that come in the form of a person in work uniform knocking on your door.

    First, a company might be selling real services, but they could be services you don’t need. Make sure you understand facts about your home, such as the last time your roof was repaired. This will help you avoid making a bad deal to replace something that doesn’t need replacing.

    Also be sure to never let someone into your home, regardless of their uniform, if you are alone or it’s late at night. Someone may be dressed like a salesperson or utility worker, but they could in reality be doing research on your home and your valuables. Would-be burglars can often spot your valuables, and see how secure your home is before coming back when no one is home.

    Protect your identity

    The issue of identity theft has been in the public eye with the rise of online communications. However, one of the easiest ways to steal your valuable information could be sitting right in your mailbox or in your garbage can.

    Always be sure to shred papers that have personal information on them. And, if you go away on vacation, ask a neighbor or relative to bring in your mail for you. Not only will this help keep your identity safe, but it will make it look like someone is at home by keeping the pile of mail and newspapers outside low.  




    Categories: Uncategorized