Maintaining Your Home

Bringing Spring in -- great ways to showcase your home with greenery

Terrariums are great for decoration, plus they pull toxins from your home. They'd also serve well as a centerpiece at your open house. If you have any questions - give Rutledge a call at 781-235-4663 - we'd be happy to help!

LOTS of great tips for bringing greenery into your home - check them out here.

Contact us if you have any questions -- our experienced agents have lots of great knowledge to share.

Little things mean a lot, especially when it comes to home staging

The mantelpiece is a great area to display your design aesthetic for staging. If you need guidance, give us a call - our experienced agents can share with you some of their extensive experiences on home staging.

Here are ten tips for a creative makeover of your mantlepiece:

Contact us for more suggestions!

An updated bathroom in just one weekend? Show me!

Impressing buyers with an updated bathroom doesn't have to cost an arm and a leg. These five easy do-it-yourself home improvements can add some serious value to your property.

Did you know that selling your home before the official Spring Market could be to your advantage? Contact us at Rutledge Properties today and we'll tell you all about it!

Read about updating your bathroom here.



Staging your home for a quick sale -- step-by-by how-to's

Check out this article on how to stage your home for a quick sale.

Do you need to stage your home for quick sale? You can trust our 22 real estate professionals who can recommend creative staging experts and guide you through the entire process of selling your home. Contact us today!


Is Your Homes Wowing Potential Buyers? Tips to Make a Great First Impression

If you're planning to sell your home, you need to make a great first impression on buyers. Learn how to snare potential buyers.

Thinking of selling your home? Contact us at Rutledge Properties at 781-235-4663 or email us at Our experienced, professional and friendly agents can help you every step of the way, from preparing your home for sale through the day of the sale. Call us today!

The Role of Bridge Loans in Your Transitional Property

Renovation: Makeover Round Up: Our House Six Months Later

On a budget? Here are some great ideas to make your home spectacular without breaking the bank. Have you done any affordable projects to your home?


7 Essential Things Every New Homeowner Needs

Becoming a homebuyer is exciting. But now that it's happening, you'll need a few things to get you from buyer to owner. You may think you only need the stamina to unpack, but that's only the beginning.

1. A basic toolkit

You don't want to be sitting at home without a wrench when your sink is leaking. Or without a Phillips screwdriver when nothing in the house will accept a flathead.

2. A DIY spirit

You're going to be testing the limits of your DIY skills as a homeowner... a lot. Painting your walls, fixing a clogged drain, pulling up old floors, laying tile - they can all expand your skills, teach you new things, and provide a real sense of pride and accomplishment.

Read the Full List Here! If you have additional questions about the home-buyer process, contact us today.

New Homeowner Essentials

12 Ways Homeowners Can Avoid Home Improvement Rip-offs

We've all heard the horror stories: contractors who took thousands of dollars and then disappeared, home renovations that dragged on for months or work so shoddy it had to be completely redone.

These nightmare scenarios may frighten you, but if you do your homework, you can prevent yourself from being ripped off by a bad home improvement contractor.

Avoid Home Improvement Rip Offs

Before a contractor begins work on your home, draw up a detailed contract with the required materials, schedule of progress payments and a timeline for the job. Image from US News and World Report

Here are 12 ways to avoid home improvement rip-offs:

  1. Beware of people who knock on your door. Good contractors rarely have to solicit business, and those who want more customers try advertising, not door-to-door solicitation. People who knock on your door are often thieves or scammers who will take your money and do a shoddy job, then disappear. Or they may even rob your house.
  2. Avoid contractors who seek a big payment upfront. A reputable contractor will ask for 10 to 25 percent of the contract price before the job starts, then ask for progress payments as the job is completed, with the schedule detailed in the contract. The only time a big upfront payment may be legitimate is if you need a large quantity of custom materials to start.
  3. Check licenses, references and insurance. Ask for references, proof of insurance and license documents, both contractor and business licenses. Then call to verify that everything is still current and valid. You may want to be named as an additional insured on the contractor's policy while he is working at your home. If you're interested, ask the contractor to add you to the policy and then bring you back the paperwork with you listed.
  4. Check courthouse records for litigation. In most municipalities, the basic information is online, though you may have to pay a few dollars to read it in some municipalities. If the contractor has been sued, read the lawsuit and, if possible, contact the complaining homeowner for details.

Read the Full Story Here!

Protect your investment with maintenance and insurance

doorFor many people, their real estate is their largest single investment. Just like any other financial investment, it needs attention and tending in order to maintain and grow its value. Protecting your real estate investment is a combination of both maintenance and insurance.

You were required to purchase home insurance when you closed on your house but a majority of homeowners neglect to review their insurance policy over time. It is important to make sure that your insurance policy fully covers the current replacement cost of your home. At a bare minimum, that means your policy should include an inflation guard. Remodeling, renovating, landscaping, hardscaping and significant interior decorating projects are all reasons to amend your policy to cover value of your home and its contents to protect against a fire, explosion, storm, flood or falling objects.

Regular inspection and maintenance of your home protects the value of your house, prevents damage that can cost you money and increases your general enjoyment of the property. Inexpensive fixes can quickly turn into costly repairs if not identified and addressed promptly.

On a seasonal, or at least annual, basis homeowners should check the structures, systems and envelope of their house:

  • Roof: Examine for missing shingles, damage, cracks, soft spots and expanding seams.
  • Gutters: Clean and inspect.
  • Attic and Basement: Check for signs of pests, animals, leaks or water damage.
  • Chimney: Clean and inspect.
  • HVAC Systems: Clean vents and duct work. Replace filters. Inspect for cracks, leaks, efficiency, condensation and drainage problems.
  • Dryer Ducts: Clean.
  • Exterior Siding and Facia: Check for signs of wear, rot and pests.
  • Foundation: Inspect for cracks and signs of pests.
  • Doors and Windows: Inspect caulking and check for gaps.
  • Trees: Trim branches away from your home. Remove dead trees.

You can make the inspections and repairs for many of these areas yourself. Items like chimneys and HVAC systems should be inspected by a specialist. HVAC and gad companies offer maintenance contracts which will ensure inspections and repairs happen on a regular basis. Alternatively, consider hiring a maintenance company or building contractor to conduct all of the inspections year-to-year.

Managing your real estate investment with the same attention you apply to all of your other financial investments will ensure that its value continues to work toward the benefit of you and your family. Rutledge Properties has dependable, timely referrals for all the trades. Contact us if you need a recommendation for any type of house specialist or a maintenance company.