Monday, May 31, 2010

Chesterfield Twp NJ - Chesterfield Downs - Gallop Way - SOLD

You will feel like you’re home the moment you enter this custom-designed Fairfield model in Chesterfield Downs, with over $50,000 in upgrades. Features include a big eat-in kitchen with tiled floors, stainless steel appliances, 42" honey maple cabinets, granite countertops, and brushed nickel fixtures. The open breakfast nook is surrounded by a large family room, living room and dining room. There is beautiful hardwood flooring in the foyer and family room. On the second floor is a roomy master suite with tray ceilings, thick carpet and padding, 2 walk-in closets, master bath with tiled floors, separate stall shower, and whirlpool tub. Notice the 3 spacious secondary bedrooms. Both main baths have upgraded vanities and corian tops. This home includes a 2-zoned heat and a/c system, and is professionally painted throughout in neutral colors. The exterior highlights tasteful landscaping with a sprinkler system. You will not be disappointed in this home on Gallop Way, which shows better than a builder’s model. Description of upgrades available on request.

For a private showing, contact Joe Gianarli, Sales Associate, 609-658-2612.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Hamilton Residents to Continue Economic Habits

A new survey by ConAgra Foods, one of North America’s leading food makers, shows that, despite the economic recovery, Americans will not soon let go of the habits they learned the last couple of years.  79% say they do not feel like the recession is over, and 71% say they will continue the savings habits they developed during the economic downturn.

The survey shows that the recession continues to impact the way people shop for and prepare food.  In the past year, 75% of Americans have cooked more meals at home than in earlier years, and say they will continue to do so. 68% say cooking has brought their family together, and 61% say they enjoy cooking more.

“Consumers are saying loud and clear that the effects of the recession are lingering,” said Phil Lempert, Supermarket Guru, in collaboration with ConAgra Foods. “Over the past 20 months, shoppers are heading back to shopping lists and looking for real value. When they are in the store, they are shopping in more locations, especially in the center of the store. Many are turning to canned or prepared products, which can offer both cost savings and convenience for those who are cooking and eating at home more.”

There also seems to be a generational element to the trends.  52% of respondents say they expect to cook more in the coming year than they did last year.  But among younger consumers, the trend is even stronger.  72% of those ages 18 to 34 say they will cook more.

71% of younger Americans have started cooking new dishes, although 59% say they don’t always know what they’re doing and that they’d like to be better cooks. Still, they enjoy cooking more than the general population–75% compared to 61%, and believe cooking increases quality family time.  81% say cooking is bringing their family together, compared to just 68% of the general population.

For more information on the study, visit

We have many good restaurants in Mercer County, and a wide selection of grocers, fresh locally-grown food, and farmer's markets.  Contact me to learn more about our Hamilton lifestyle, and to request a free copy of my Relocation Gude.

Joe Giancarli, Sales Associate

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Robbinsville NJ - Foxmooor - Townhome - Tynemouth Ct - SOLD

6 Tynemouth Court in Robbinsville is an immaculate 2 bedroom, 1.5 bath Foxmoor townhouse. This home features hardwood floors throughout main floor, custom painting, large kitchen with breakfast nook, new gourmet stainless steel appliances, built-in microwave, under-counter lighting, upgraded designer tile backsplash, and large formal dining room. The living room has recessed lighting, a wood-burning fireplace and hardwood floors. On the second floor are two large Jack and Jill bedrooms with hardwood floors, and a beautifully decorated full bath with stand up shower, spacious soaking tub, dual vanity, and ceramic tile floors. The wooded landscaped fenced back yard with a cement patio is great for entertaining, and there’s a storage shed for your tools. The home also has a dual pad security system, and is move-in condition.

Contact Joe Giancarli, Sales Associate, 609-658-2612 for a private showing.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Mercer County NJ Museum Director Wins Award

Pete Watson, director of the Howell Living History Farm in Mercer County, has been selected as the 2010 recipient of the prestigious John Cotton Dana Award by the New Jersey Association of Museums.

For the past 27 years, Watson has worked as the manager of the Howell Living History Farm in Titusville, a 130-property that was a working farm for 240 years before the land was given to Mercer County by the Howell family in 1974. For the past three years, Watson has also served as director of the Pleasant Valley Historic District and he is a member of the New Jersey State Agri-Tourism Council.  The farm is part of the Mercer County Park Commission.

A graduate of Lawrence University in Appleton, Wisconsin, Watson has written several books, including Animal Traction, a Peace Corps manual for agricultural extension agents. He lives in Summit, N.J., with his wife Mary, a children’s book publisher, and sons, Kevin and Harry, both of whom are Howell Farm volunteers and ALHFAM plowmen.

Throughout the year, Howell Farm invites visitors to join in the work and fun of seasonal activities such as ice harvesting; maple sugaring; sheep shearing; pumpkin harvesting, and dozens of hands-on activities related to actual operations. The farm’s annual calendar of events includes monthly hay rides (or sleigh rides); weekly craft programs for children; and New Jersey’s only horse-drawn plowing match.   Visit the Farm Calendar for more events.  Watch a Virtual Tour of the Farm and learn its history.

Congratulations to Pete Watson and our thanks for his fine work keeping a piece of New Jersey history alive for future generations.

Joe Giancarli, Sales Associate


Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Jersey Shore - Short Sale - Bank Approved - Want Offer - Point Pleasant - Cooks Lane

Immaculate duplex only 5 blocks to Point Pleasant Beach and boardwalk. This well built house features Anderson windows, 1.5 baths, spacious bedrooms and a pristine kitchen with light cabinetry and easy-to-clean vinyl flooring. A custom deck in the rear offers a nice space to grill and entertain. This is the lowest price in Point Pleasant, and priced to sell. Conveniently located to the Point Pleasant Beach train station, this home is perfect for the owner who needs to commute to NYC or attract beach tenants. It’s only one block away from Antrim school.
Call Joe Giancarli, Sales Associate, RE/MAX Tri County, 609-658-2612, to see.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Creating an Earth-Friendly Yard in Hamilton, NJ

If you want to make an impact on the "greening" of Hamilton and Mercer County, NJ, start in your own front or back yard.  According to Owen Dell, author of Sustainable Landscaping for Dummies, the U.S. is home to 32 million acres of lawn, or enough to cover the 100 largest U.S. cities almost twice.  Lawns drink 270 billion gallons of water a week and 800 million gallons of (mower) gas a year is used for their care. Add the impacts of pesticides and chemical-based fertilizers and the impact on our planet is huge.  How can you stop the dependence on lawns and their care?  Here are some ideas.

  • Don't overwater.  Get a free water audit.  Watch the grass.  If it doesn't spring back when you step on it in the middle of the afternoon, it's time to water.  Even watering four times a week is too much in most cases.
  • Water deeply.  Most do well with 15-20 minutes at a time, once or twice a week.  It's best to water for 10 minutes, let the water seep in to the roots, wait 20 minutes, then water again.  You may have to reset your automatic timer.
  • Check the sprinkler coverage.  The water auditor can help you check this.  Look for dry spots or water-logged spots, and then reposition or turn the sprinker heads.
  • Visit the soil once or twice a year.  Aerate the lawn in the Spring and Fall to loosen the roots and make fertilizers more effective.
  • Let the grass grow longer, up to 3 inches.  Then the blades will shade out emerging weeds.
  • Be stingy with fertilizers.  One fertilization in early Fall with an organic product should be enough.
  • Use natural as much as possible.  Look for insecticides with natural ingredients like vinegar and orange oil.  Pulling weeds is also an option to spray.
  • Use the grass clippings from your mowing for compost or even keep them on the lawn instead of raking them up.  They are rich in nitrogen.
  • Consider a remake of your outside area to reduce the size of the lawn. Try a border of plants mixed with rocks or walkway, or low maintenance ground cover.
  • When you study your outdoor spaces, also consider low-maintenance grass for the areas you want to keep as lawn.  Options are fescues and buffalograss for instance.  You want varieties that thrive with minimal water and mowing.
Enjoy your lawn and yard, but think Green when you do.  If each of us in Hamilton NJ takes small steps in our own homes, we can make Mercer County a more livable and greener place.

Joe Giancarli, Sales Associate


Thursday, May 6, 2010

Quarterly Home Price Trends in Northeast

Clear Capital has released its latest Home Data Index Market Report, which shows U.S. quarter-over-quarter home price declines slowed in April, while year-over-year price gains remain steady at 5.1 percent.

Dr. Alex Villacorta, Senior Statistician, Clear Capital, explained, "An interesting dynamic we're observing is the clear distinction between markets that are resilient to increased levels of bank owned properties and those which continue to be highly sensitive.  For example, the highest performing metro areas have seen prices remain relatively flat over the last quarter despite REO [bank-owned properties] saturation rates averaging just above 33 percent. Contrast this with the lowest performing areas which have seen prices drop dramatically with average declines of more than 10 percent and average REO saturation rate less than those in the highest performing areas. This paradox suggests that price trends are not wholly dependent on distressed sale volume, and re-enforces the need to understand local market trends," added Villacorta.

Quarter-over-quarter home prices continue to slide across all four regions of the nation. Nationally, the 5.0 percent price decline represents a further 1.1 percentage point reduction from the quarterly decline reported last month. On a positive note, this is a marked slowdown in the rate of decline compared to the 3.9 percentage point drop seen between the reports released in early March and April of this year.   The Northeast (2.2%) added 0.1 percent over last month.

Nationally, the 5.1 percent year-over-year price change remained unchanged from last month's report. The increase in the Nation's REO saturation rate slowed this month, rising less than one percentage point to 29.6 percent.   Even if quarterly price gains are experienced during this spring and summer, pressure will remain on the year-over-year comparisons as prices are compared relative to the price correction of mid-2009.  Compared to the highest performing major markets which are largely made up of markets in the South and West regions, the lowest performing major markets are dominated by markets in the Midwest.

The key here, as Villacorta stated, is to understand your local market.  Hamilton New Jersey is going to have an entirely different set of real estate pressures than Des Moines or Houston.  I'm a native of central New Jersey, and can give you specific real estate information on any area here - from Hamilton to Bordentown to Robbinsville.  Just call or email for real estate market statistics.  For an update on April numbers, visit my Mercer County real estate blog on Active Rain.

Joe Giancarli, Sales Associate


Saturday, May 1, 2010

Active US Military have an Extra Year for the Buyer Tax Credits in Hamilton, NJ

Although the 1st Time Buyer Tax Credit expires today for most buyers, the law provides qualified service members who served on official extended duty outside of the United States for 90 days or more at any time between Jan. 1, 2009, to April 30, 2010, another year to buy a home and claim the credit. They have until April 30, 2011, to sign a sales contract, and until June 30, 2011, to settle and close on the home. Both the $8,000 first-time and $6,500 repeat home buyer tax credits are included in the rule.

Qualified service members are defined as a member of the uniformed services of the United States military, a member of the Foreign Service of the United States, or an employee of the intelligence community.

The rule that requires buyers to repay the credit if they move out of their home within three years has also been waived for qualified service members if they have to sell their home due to receiving government orders for extended duty service.

If you qualify, contact me today to start looking for a home under construction in Mercer County or a resale home for sale in any of our communities and townships, Hamilton or its neighbors.

Joe Giancarli, Sales Associate