Wall Art Trends to Know

As we spend more time in our homes, we want them to reflect our personal style, be comfortable, and aesthetically pleasing. Updating what’s on your walls is an easy way to give your home a new look and feel. Read on for some of the wall art trends you should know if you’re thinking of revamping your space.

Gallery Walls

Image via Google

Gallery walls are immensely popular right now. They are a great way to showcase your personal style in your home. All you need is a blank wall! Hot tip – if you’re not necessarily the creative type, but love this look, websites like Etsy bundle prints for sale and come with size guides/lay out to help achieve this look.

Biophilia

Image via Pinterest

Biophilic design is another hot trend with staying power. The definition of the word means that humans have innate connection and are drawn to nature. We saw this with the pandemic as people sought out nature and green space. Studies have even shown that looking at a photo of nature can reduce stress. Living walls such as the one pictured above are a great choice, but if you don’t have a green thumb, even a framed picture of a tree could help you decompress after a long day!

Wallpaper

Image via Pinterest

Wallpaper is back and thanks to technological advancements, the possibilities are endless! I prefer a soft motif such as in the photo above, but there are geometrical patterns, bold color combinations, animals, and so many more options trending right now.

Dimensional

Image via Google

Similar to a gallery wall, with less margin for error, is the picture ledge which also makes a space feel more dimensional. You don’t have to use photos. You can display books, candles, trinkets or whatever, to add interest to a blank wall.

Minimalism

Less is more! Monochromatic, textured artwork is popping up left and right. It’s not an imitation of some other thing. The viewer is meant to respond only to what is in front of them.

Let me know your favorite trend in the comments!

Neighborhood Snapshot: Hyde Park

Situated in the most southern point of Boston, about 7 miles from Downtown, is Hyde Park. Home prices in the neighborhood have been increasing as house hunters search for an urban/suburban mix feel, but it’s still a developing area with more opportunities than West Roxbury, Jamaica Plain, or Roslindale.

What to Know

Readville

Image via Google

This peaceful section of Hyde Park was home to the late Mayor Menino and is dotted with small capes along tree-line, leafy streets. Developers have started to turn their eyes to this area, specifically near the commuter rail station which is only a couple of stops from Back Bay station.

Everett Square Theatre

Image via Historic Boston

The Everett Square Theatre was built as a moving picture house. It also hosted live vaudeville, musical, and other performances. The Historic Boston Institute worked with the theater owner to re-create and install the original “Everett Square Theatre” sign that once hung over the entry and restored and re-opened the theater’s boarded up foyer to create space for temporary art installations, displays, and events to help revive awareness of the theater space and build support for its eventual rehabilitation.

Ron’s Ice Cream

Image via Google

Love retro? Then you will love this spot built in the 70s. It’s an ice cream parlor/bowling alley and one of Boston’s best-kept secrets. Definitely worth checking out whether you’re interested in buying in the area or not.

Stony Brook Reservation

Image via Google

This small forest offers activities for the whole family. Explore the trails on foot or bike, or head to Turtle Pond for some fishing. In the park’s southern end, you’ll find athletic fields and a pool and spray deck.

Market Snapshot

Similar to the rest of Greater Boston, Hyde Park has very little inventory, days on market are getting shorter, and the average sale price is trending upward (though just slightly from the year before) per MLS,

Average Sale Price: $600,795 (+3.9% vs. Year Ago)
Average Days on Market: 20 (-17% vs. Year Ago)

Available Properties

Click the link below to view a collection of available properties on the market.

If you’re considering buying, selling, or exploring in Hyde Park, contact me, and let’s talk about the value of working together.

Fall 2021 Home Trends

I’m sure many of you are holding on to these last few weeks of summer (hello, heat wave!), but the new season is slowly creeping up on us. Let’s take a look at what’s trending this fall and beyond.

Modern Organic

Image via Heritage School of Interior Design

Modern organic design started trending in 2018, but the trend has really taken off thanks to the pandemic and TikTok showcasing how to intentionally bring nature into your home. Think modern lines, warm neutrals mixed with natural forms and materials. The vibe is subtle, airy, and effortless. I have a feeling this style will be around for a while.

Partitions and Room Dividers

Image via Apartment Therapy

The pandemic also contributed to the end of the long “open concept living” reign. With more people working from home, there is a desire for privacy and more closed-off spaces. If your current living space is open, there are ways to separate and create more intimate spaces via room dividers or partitions.

Layered Bedding

Image via Pinterest

Bring on the furry or chunky knit throws, velvet pillows, and a hot cup of tea! Fall is the start of the cozy season and a great time to give your bedroom a refresh that’s sure to keep you warm all winter.

Wicker, Rattan, and Cane

Image via Pinterest

Rattan, wicker, and cane furniture is also making a major comeback. This new iteration of the trend mixes really well with Scandinavian or Bohemian style (and also the above-mentioned modern organic).

Accent Lighting

Image via Avant Garde Boston

Lighting is key in a home and the new trend seems to be adding accent lighting in unexpected places. Try adding a lantern or two to a staircase or entryway for a soft glow. I’ve also seen some people add lighting in their planters which makes for a cool vibe at night.

Statement Lighting

Image via Pinterest

Updating your light fixtures can be a great way to breathe new life into your space. The design world appears to be very soft and neutral right now – with the exception of lighting – it’s go big or go home. People are replacing their standard flush lights for something more interesting and in areas that call for something “special” there are some really elaborate choices available.

5 Tips for Buyers in a Competitive Market

1. Prepare Yourself

In any market conditions, preparedness is key to success. This is especially true in the competitive sellers market we find ourselves in both the city and suburbs. Get familiar with the local market. Understand that your first, second, or even third offers may not be accepted. It is a marathon, not a sprint.

2. Know Your Financials

We are seeing multiple offers on homes, homes selling over asking price, buyers waiving contingencies, and cash offers in the suburbs especially. Ensure your financial situation is sound before you start your home search. Know what your top budget looks like, have your financial documents prepared and ensure easy access to funds so you can move quickly if your offer is accepted.

3. Be Ready to Move Fast

Homes in the ‘burbs can be on the market mere hours before someone snatches them up in this current real estate climate. So, once you’ve found a place you’d like to call home, you need to act fast. This is where all those preparations come into play. Because of all the prep work you’ve done in advance, you should be able to make tough decisions quickly and decisively alongside your realtor (trusted advisor) who will be there to guide you every step of the way.

4. Keep At It

In today’s competitive landscape, it is highly unlikely that the first offer you put out there will be accepted, but that doesn’t mean you should stop trying. Keep looking at houses, making offers that are competitive, and playing the waiting game. And with the guidance of an experienced advisor and as you gain more experience with the process, you will be successful. It’s just a matter of time, patience, and determination.

5. Have a Trusted Real Estate Advisor

Arguably the most crucial part of the home buying process in today’s competitive market is having a realtor/advisor that will guide you through the entire process. You need someone with knowledge of the market, who knows what it takes to be successful, with sharp negotiation skills, a network to ensure you can get in to see a new home at the first possible opportunity, good communication skills, and determination to help you achieve your goals.

Ready to start your new home search? Contact me and let’s set up a consultation.

5 Tips for Sellers in a Competitive Market

1. Save your budget on upgrades and renovations

In a seller’s market, there is no need to go over the top with upgrades and renovations to your home. It depends on the particular condition of your home. A fresh coat of paint and some decluttering may go a long way and be enough to achieve a great online presence and the maximum result. Seek the guidance of your agent before embarking on any upgrades Depending on where you’re moving after you sell, you can allocate that money towards your home buying budget. Which brings me to…

2. Know your next move

If you’re going to sell high, be prepared to buy high particularly if you are looking in the suburbs. For those looking for a move to the city, while Boston is not typically a city where you can find a deal, depending on the neighborhood and type of property, the market MAY be less competitive than it was pre-pandemic and there could be opportunities available for buyers.

3. Maximize the inevitable bidding war

Even in a seller’s market, you need a solid strategy to ensure you are able to sell your home for the right price in the right time frame for you. Houses that are overpriced could turn away interest and leave your home sitting on the market. On the flip side, if you price your home too low, you may literally sell yourself short. It’s imperative to work with a realtor who can best advise you and craft a strategy specific to your situation.

4. Employ logic when accepting an offer

It’s tempting to accept the highest monetary offer, but there are other things to consider. For example, a high offer with only 5% down is less strong than an all-cash offer at a lower price. With a cash offer, you have less risk. You don’t have to worry about the buyer’s financing falling through or an appraisal coming in lower than the sale price. There are many factors to weigh when reviewing an offer.

5. Partner with a broker who understands the intricacies of a seller’s market

The right realtor/client relationship goes deeper than just selling your home. I believe my role is to serve as a lifestyle advisor, bringing thoughtful analysis, honesty and integrity to my clients so you can make the best-informed decisions, act with confidence, and sell your home for the best price possible.

Thinking of selling? Contact me and let’s set up a consultation!

Boston’s Best Al Fresco Dining

Al fresco dining season is in full swing in between the record rain. While getting reservations for outdoor seating can be challenging, from first hand experience, it’s definitely worth a try. Here are five of the newest spots to dine outside (or open air) in Boston.

Contessa

Image via Google

Sitting high on the rooftop of The Newbury (aka the former Taj), Contessa draws its aesthetic from northern Italian estates and old European resorts. From the roof, you can look out onto Newbury Street and the Boston Common, and retractable panels transform the space into an open-air restaurant. The food and drinks are equally as amazing as the scene, as Contessa is brought to us by the same restaurant group as the (almost) impossible to get a reservation, Carbone, in NYC.

Toro

Image via Google

Toro is a staple for authentic Spanish tapas in the South End, but since COVID, they have expanded their space outdoors thanks to a vacant lot and a furniture donation from Wayfair. The outdoor space includes lots of greenery and some lounge seating around fire-pit tables, as well as a mix of other seating options. And, of course, their signature food and drinks have kept people coming in for years.

Woods Hill Pier 4

Image via Google

As the name suggests, Woods Hill’s outdoor dining space is located on the pier offering stunning harbor views in addition to a delicious, farm-to-table menu. They were even able to maintain the outdoor dining option throughout the seasons as they offered igloos ( for a price!), for social distancing initially but also cooler temps.

SRV

Image via Google

This Venetian-style osteria and wine bar features an al fresco courtyard, which is enclosed by the South End’s ivy-covered brick walls. It serves as the perfect backdrop for date night or catching up with friends.

Tall Ship

Image via Google

This spring, an actual floating oyster bar/pop up experience opened in East Boston. There are gorgeous mahogany bars, a raw bar, and nautical- themed cocktails. Next door, there’s a 40,000-square-foot outdoor space that will host live entertainment, retail and food vendors, food trucks, and pop-ups. It is definitely worth the trip to East Boston!

Let me know your favorite al fresco dining spot in the comments!

Buildings with Pools in Boston

Whether indoor or outdoor, a pool offers respite from the heat, relaxation, and recreation. This may be one of the hardest amenities to come by in the city, but there are options out there. Last summer, I highlighted Boston luxury residences that feature a pool such as the Four Seasons (new and old), Echelon Seaport, 45 Province, The Quinn, and others (read here). Keep reading for Part 2 are some more fantastic buildings in Boston with pools.

The Somerset

Image via Google

This former luxury hotel offers a beautiful manicured outdoor pool and patio area. It’s also one of the only private residences in the Back Bay offering a pool.

The Pierce

Image via Google

Head to the roof for a dip in the pool and stay for the amazing city views. As the tallest building in the Fenway area, the views are truly amazing and the design of the pool area exquisite.

Union Wharf

Image via Google

A seaside, in-ground pool in the heart of the Waterfront. There is a sense of privacy thanks to the greenery surrounding the area and the water views are one of a kind.

Harbor Towers

Image via Google

The unique shape, deck space and seating make this one of the most beautiful outdoor pool areas in the city. It’s the perfect set up for recreation and you can even barbeque!

Devonshire Boston

Image via Google

The Devonshire is the only luxury apartment building on this list and offers a fabulous alternative if you are looking to rent vs. buy. Available year-round, this penthouse-level indoor pool comes with expansive cityscape views and access to a temperature-controlled solarium. There is plenty of space around the surrounding deck to enjoy a meal, bring your laptop and work, or just relax.

If you’re interested in learning more about any of the properties you see or about the Boston lifestyle, contact me to get the conversation started!

Black Paint is All the Rage

Original Post via Sotheby’s Extraordinary Living Blog

Shading your walls in black may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you’re considering paint colors. But black has a daring all its own that can bring character and chicness to your space.

Let me know in the comments if you would try this trend.

New Construction in Boston

With construction back in full swing in the city, the amount of luxury residences in Boston look to be on the up and up in 2022 and beyond. Let’s take a look at some noteworthy and newly approved buildings.

St. Regis

With a projected completion date of mid 2022, the St. Regis will be the first stand alone, not attached to a hotel, residence for the brand and will bring a new level of sophistication to waterfront living. There’s the legendary butler service and an entire floor dedicated to amenities such as spa, fitness studio, golf simulator, pool, and a private access restaurant for residents. All of the homes will feature floor-to-ceiling windows, gourmand kitchens, wide plank floors, spa-like bathrooms with heated floors, and contemporary fixtures.

Raffles Back Bay

Another hotel chain new to Boston (first mixed-use U.S property for the brand) and slated for 2022 opening, Raffles Boston Back Bay promises a new, vertical neighborhood inspired by the Emerald Necklace. Aside from a stunning aesthetic, there will be six amenity spaces on the 21st floor that will be exclusive to residents, according to the team: The Secret Garden, The Residents’ Library, The Emerald Terrace, Residents’ Private Dining Room, Nantucket Cottage Tasting Kitchen, and Wine Lounge, and The Sports Lounge, where residents can watch movies, play poker, billiards, or practice their swing in a golf simulator room. There will be several options to its residents: from unique pied-a-terre suites, to 1-to-3 Bedroom condos, to luxurious top notch Penthouses. All will have a superbly modern design, open layouts, sleek finishes, top of the line appliances, and amazing city views.

60 Kilmarnock

Image via BPDA

The revitalization and evolution of Fenway continues with 60 Kilmarnock. This project was approved by BPDA back in September and will replace surface parking, aging parking garages, and single-story buildings with over 400 residential units split between two buildings. Construction has not started yet, but check the blog or reach out directly for updates.

South Station Tower

Image via ArchPaper

Construction of the South Station Tower started right before the pandemic hit in 2020 and has an estimated phase 1 completion date of 2025 so there is time before we know all of the details, but this new construction is sure to be transformational for commuters and city dwellers alike. Keep checking back or stay in touch for more details as they come.

The Quinn

Ultra-luxury in the South End! The Quinn will feature 101 luxury condos ranging from studios to 4 bedrooms as well as luxury apartments. The ground floor will be home to 8,500 square feet of commercial space. Select units will have roof cabanas with outdoor kitchens and there will be a full array of resident amenities including 24/7 Doorman, White Glove Concierge Services, Resident Lounge, Common Terrace with Outdoor Kitchen, Game Room, Dog City Pet Spa. Inside the homes you will find custom oak cabinetry, bronze metal reveals, and polished Calacatta stone. Oak floors and gas burning fireplaces bring warmth to airy, modern rooms, which are beautifully appointed with Sub-Zero and Wolf appliances, built-in Thermador wine coolers, and marble bathrooms.

For more info on any of the buildings featured, contact me and let’s set up a time to chat!

Best Beach Communities Near Boston

It’s only June and already we’re feeling the heat here in the Boston area. If you’re looking for a weekend getaway or always dreamed of a home by the coast, consider some of these top choices right outside of Boston.

Rockport

This small seaside town offers charm, culture, and community less than hour north of Boston. Since the only land border is Gloucester to the west, there are plenty of little beaches and endless views of the Atlantic in this sparse suburban town. Check out Bearskin Neck, one of the most beloved art colonies, to find one-of-a-kind galleries, shops, restaurants, and cafes at the very tip of Cape Ann.

Ipswich

Ipswich is home to Crane’s Beach, one of the most popular and pristine beaches on Cape Ann. Aside from the miles of coastline, there are plenty of trails and dunes to explore year-round. Day trippers and residents alike enjoy a day at the beach followed by fresh seafood at Ipswich Clambake or a stop at one of the farms along the way home such as Appleton Farms or Russells Orchard complete with winery. However, there is more to the town than just the ocean. There is a bustling downtown, commuter rail station, as well as access to the Ipswich River.

Newburyport

With a bustling downtown, Newburyport is so much more than a summer escape. You can feel the history as you drive through and see the preserved downtown and residences. There’s art, culture, food, shopping, hiking, and access to the ocean and Merrimack River.

Cohasset

Traveling to the South Shore, you’ll find the small coastal community of Cohasset. It’s home to the oldest yacht club on the South Shore, has a quaint downtown area, and three beaches along the bay that are open to the public. Though small, there are no shortage of multi-million dollar homes dotting the coastline on notorious roads such as Jericho Rd. and Atlantic Ave.

Chatham

Further south now to the Cape, we stop at Chatham, home of arguably the most famous summer baseball league. This may be better suited as summer vacation/summer home destination if you have a young family as most of the year-long residents are retirees. It’s also home to one of the Cape’s most scenic golf courses and a luxurious dining scene.

Falmouth

Falmouth is one of the most populated towns on the Cape and for good reason. You hav access to gorgeous beaches, plus many attractions in Falmouth stay open during the cooler months of the year. While the big crowds may still start to taper off, you don’t have to worry about everything closing up shop in Falmouth at the end of the summer season.

The Islands

For the sake of this blog, I am grouping Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket together, but as anyone who has visited any of the islands knows, there is a pleasant rivalry inspired by the fierce loyalty of regulars who visit or reside on either island. Martha’s Vineyard is about 7 miles from the mainland making it the closer of the 2 and about twice the size making a car a necessity. Nantucket is 30 miles off the coast, with just one town and a bike is the preferred mode of transportation here. Both offer pristine beaches that island living dreams are made of.

What are some of your favorite beaches? Let me know in the comments!

If you’re considering a vacation or second home, contact me and let’s get the conversation started.