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Thursday, August 31, 2017

Avalon and Stone Harbor NJ Weekly Update August 31st, 2017


“HOBO” FLOOD SENSORS were placed at 15 strategic locations in Avalon to collect data during flood events.  Many will not be visible but will be monitored by Stockton University for a year or more.  Data collected will help to plan future mitigation efforts in Avalon and other barrier islands.

ALL THE WAY TO MEXICO from Cape May County?  Monarch butterflies make the annual migration—proven by monarch butterfly tagging records.  A monarch tagged at The Wetlands Institute in 2015 was one of a dozen found at the El Rosario Sanctuary in Michoacan, Mexico in 2016.   The monarchs were tagged as part of the New Jersey Audubon Society’s Monarch Monitoring Project, which reports that most monarchs in the sanctuary cannot be inspected, so each tagged monarch found likely represents many more.  So far, a total of 70 tagged monarchs have been reported there.  Tagging efforts will begin again on September 1st.

A lone kayaker tours Avalon’s Bayfront on a summer afternoon.

$1,110,634 IN PRIZE MONEY was collected by the crew of Goin’ In Deep after the boat landed both a 680-pound blue marlin and a 184-pound tuna during the annual MidAtlantic fishing tournament.  A total of $3.24 million in prize money was paid out to all prize winning crews, setting a tournament record.    145 boats participated in the tournament.

AIRFEST RETURNS!  Missed “Thunder Over the Boardwalk” in Atlantic City last week?   Then check out “Airfest” this weekend at the Aviation Museum at Naval Air Station Wildwood.  Several WWII vintage bombers will arrive Friday afternoon (September 1st) about 2pm and will be available for walk through tours each day through Monday, September 4th.  Tickets are $14 for adults and $10 for children, and include admission to the NASW Museum.  Want to go the extra mile?  Take a half-hour flight on a B-17 or B-24 for $450, or get a half-hour of “stick time” in a P-51 Mustang for $2,200!  For info visit www.usnasw.org or call (609) 886-8787.  No reservations are needed for walk through tours.  To reserve flight times visit www.cfdn.org or call (800) 568-8924.

MOTORCARS IN CAPE MAY!  Take a ride aboard a railroad “motorcar” from Cape May Station, through the marsh toward the Cape May Canal Swing Bridge this weekend!  The low slung, open air motorcars were originally used to transport railroad crews, but make for an enjoyable ride.  Trips will depart every hour from 10am to 3pmSaturday & Sunday, September 2nd & 3rd.  See Cape May, its wildlife, and its railroad history from a unique perspective!  Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for children.   For more info visit http://urhs.org/the-motor-cars-are-back-for-another-weekend-in-cape-may/

UPCOMING EVENTS:
  • Wildwood’s Restaurant Week, Now through Friday, September 1
  • Author Lecture featuring longtime Avalon summer resident Estep Nagy discussing his 1st novel ‘We Shall Not All Sleep,’ Avalon Free Public Library, 7PM, Thursday, August 31
  • Stone Harbor’s 2nd Annual Kings & Queens of the Clay Tennis Tournament, tennis courts at 8100 Second Avenue, www.StoneHarborRecreation.com or 609-368-1210 for info, Saturday, September 2
  • Stone Harbor’s 1st Annual Summer Finale Pickleball Tournament, 8100 Second Avenue, www.StoneHarborRecreation.com or 368-1210 for info, Saturday & Sunday, September 2nd & 3rd
  • Full Moon Climb at the Cape May Lighthouse, call 609-884-5404 for info, 8-10PM, Wednesday, September 6
  • Sea Isle City’s Food Truck Festival, 15 food trucks, crafters, entertainment, live music, more, Friday, September 8 through Sunday, September 10
  • Get In Gear Bike & Stroll Experience, sponsored by Burke Motor Group, Harbor Bike & Beach Shop & Stone Harbor Chamber of Commerce, raising funds for local scholarships, visit www.stoneharborbeach.com  for info, 9AM-10PM, Saturday, September 9
  • Avalon Chamber of Commerce End of Summer Shop Hop, Avalon Shopping District, www.visitavalonnj.com for info, Saturday, September 9 & Sunday, September 10
  • Big Band Dance featuring Marilyn and the Monroes, Avalon Community Hall, 7PM, Saturday, September 9
  • Stone Harbor 9/11 Remembrance Ceremony, Freedom Park at 96th Street & Seng Place, 11AM-1PM, Monday, September 11
  • 22nd Annual Nun’s Beach Surf Contest, 111th Street beach in Stone Harbor, 7AM, Saturday, September 16
  • Author Lecture featuring Jerry Beebe, author of ‘The Backdoor Curve’, Avalon Free Public Library, 2-3PM, Saturday, September 16
  • Cape May Traditional Jazz Society Presents Ben Mauger’s Vintage Jazz Band, VFW Post #386, 419 Congress Street, Cape May, proceeds benefit the Food Bank of Southern NJ, 2-4PM, Sunday, September 17
  • Wetlands Institute Fall Migration Festival, guided nature walks, back bay boat & kayak tours, live animal presentations, more, Wetlands Institute at 1075 Stone Harbor Boulevard, 9:30AM-4:30PM, Saturday, September 23
  • Stone Harbor’s 6th Annual Savor September Festival, local food vendors, wine, beer, live music, kids’ activities, artisans, for info visitwww.StoneHarborBeach.com, 96th Street business district, Noon-9PM, Saturday, September 23
  • Avalon Performing Arts Center Concert featuring Jerry Blavat (The Geator With the Heater), advance tickets at Avalon Community Hall, doors open at 6:30PM, music starts at 7PM, show at 8PM, Saturday, September 30
  • Avalon Chamber of Commerce Seafood Festival, local food vendors, chowder contest, beer, wine, music, crafts, more, 30th Street Parking Lot, 10AM-5PM, Saturday & Sunday, October 7 & 8
  • Big Band Dance featuring the Fred Hall Band, Avalon Community Hall, 7PM, Saturday, October 14


Featured Property:

Five bedrooms plus a pool; walk to town or the beach!


New Listings:

449 22nd Street, Avalon, $629,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177856

317 83rd Street, Stone Harbor, $715,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177806

2310 Dune Drive, Avalon, $829,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177815

284 67th Street, Avalon, $849,900, ACTIVE MLS#: 177818

910 Stone Harbor Boulevard, Stone Harbor Manor, $895,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177891

260 83rd Street, Stone Harbor, $899,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177870

262 50th Street, Avalon, $1,095,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177807

159 29th, Avalon, $1,499,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177885

148 21st Street, Avalon, $1,779,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177886

1148 Avalon Avenue, Avalon, $1,899,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177835

4328 Dune Drive, Avalon, $2,349,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177880

51 Pelican Drive, Avalon, $2,700,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177894

216 6th Street, Avalon, $2,995,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177869

214 62nd Street, Avalon, $3,595,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177801
 

Properties Sold:

1116 Stone Harbor Blvd., #305, Stone Harbor Manor, $849,000, SOLD MLS#: 174813

2420 Fourth Avenue, Avalon, $975,000, SOLD MLS#: 175525

65 W. 24th Street, Avalon, $1,475,000, SOLD MLS#: 176030

299 46th Street, Avalon, $1,605,000, SOLD MLS#: 176371

361 92nd Street, Stone Harbor, $1,707,500, SOLD MLS#: 176947

663 W. Sunrise Dr., Avalon, $1,735,000, SOLD MLS#: 175004



Nancy M. Alexander - Stone Harbor and Avalon NJ Real Estate NancyAlexander.com

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

America’s Favorite Investment? Real Estate



Looking for the best way to invest your money long-term? Most Americans say real estate is the way to go.

According to a recent report from Bankrate.com, when asked the best way to invest money not needed for more than 10 years, 28 percent of U.S. adults replied real estate, followed by cash investments (23 percent), the stock market (17 percent), gold/other precious metals (15 percent) and bonds (4 percent).

The Bankrate.com survey has been conducted five years in a row and this is the third straight time real estate has grabbed the number one slot. Interestingly, the stock market has never placed higher than third, which is particularly surprising since the S&P 500 is up more than 50 percent since the question was first asked in July 2013.

Republicans and households with annual incomes of $75,000 or more were the only demographic groups to select stocks as their preferred long-term investments. Baby Boomers and members of the Silent Generation were more likely to choose stocks than millennials and Gen Xers.

The Bankrate.com Financial Security Index dipped slightly recently, but is still at its third-best reading since the Index debuted in Dec. 2010. Four of the five components have improved from 12 months ago: job security, comfort level with debt, net worth and overall financial situation. However, Americans are feeling slightly worse about their savings relative to last year.

Feel free to contact me if you’d like more information about investing in real estate.

Source: Bankrate.com




Nancy M. Alexander - Stone Harbor and Avalon NJ Real Estate NancyAlexander.com

Monday, August 28, 2017

How to Save for Your Child's College Tuition

Whether your child is five or fifteen, saving for their future is important. It's never too early to start squirreling away money for tuition. To help, MassMutual offers the following five tips for families planning and saving for college:



Start early. Start saving what you can at birth. Little monthly or annual savings really add up over 18 years.

Make it automatic. Consider automating checking account or payroll deductions to interest-earning savings accounts specifically designed for higher education, such as a 529 savings plan.

Encourage monetary gifts (including 529 plan gift cards) from family members and friends for college savings plans for gift-giving events. Prior to your child's birthday and holidays, remind loved ones that the best gift they can give is the gift of a strong future.

Know how much you need to save. Determine how much you need to save using free online tools such as MassMutual's college savings calculator.

Protect your loved ones for unexpected events. In addition to saving for school, life and disability income insurance are solid considerations for parents with children.

Source: MassMutual



Nancy M. Alexander - Stone Harbor and Avalon NJ Real Estate NancyAlexander.com

Friday, August 25, 2017

Save Money Through Energy Efficiency

(Family Features)--As much as half of the average homeowner's monthly utility expenses go toward cooling and heating, according to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). For many households, that makes energy the largest home-related expense each month, next to a mortgage payment.

Fortunately, numerous technological advances are making it easier than ever to manage home energy use. In fact, the DOE estimates you can save as much as 10 percent a year on energy costs by simply adjusting the temperature up or down when you're away during the day. Installing a programmable thermostat that never forgets to adjust on a busy morning and kicks back on before you arrive home can help you earn these savings and reduce energy consumption.




Home Automation
Newer smart, programmable thermostats can be controlled remotely by internet-connected devices, such as tablets and smartphones. Some models can also monitor your energy usage and system efficiency, providing data to help you make further adjustments to how you operate your HVAC system.

Lighting is another major energy challenge. However, smart light bulbs let you adjust your home's ambiance (and energy usage) with just a couple of quick taps. Paired with motion sensors that detect movement (or a lack thereof) and adjust lighting accordingly, smart bulbs can help reduce the waste of energy caused by lighting unused rooms.

Similarly, smartphone applications that connect to other appliances, utilities and home features offer the best of personalized comfort and convenience while providing tools to help minimize your home's energy consumption.

Zoned Climate Control
If you're like most homeowners, there are parts of your house that simply don't get much use or only get used during certain times of the day. Maintaining the temperature in those uninhabited areas can be costly and wasteful. As an alternative, an option such as zoned climate control allows you to stay comfortable in the rooms you use without spending a fortune on energy bills.

While a zoned system is generally considered a premium home feature, it isn't unattainable and actually offers long-term savings, due to its energy-efficient operation. The home is divided into zones, designated by floors, rooms or areas - however the homeowner chooses - which eliminates the "all on" feature of traditional air conditioners.

A system like Mitsubishi Electric Cooling & Heating's Zoned Comfort Solutions offers a true zoning-system with convenient controls and automation, along with whisper-quiet operation. Both ducted and non-ducted units are available depending on the space and occupant needs. Additionally, some models have advanced filtration features to help eliminate allergens, contributing to improved air quality.

For a new build, installing a zoned system from the outset is relatively simple. However, zoned systems are also a possible solution for replacing your home's HVAC system or rectifying a problem with a single uncomfortable room. Pairing the system with sensors or remote app controls can bring operating costs even lower through computerized automation.

Renewable Energy
Another option to offset some of your home's energy and utility costs is generating your own renewable energy through solar or wind power systems. Installation depends on many variables, such as how much energy you use, local codes and standards, and whether the house and surrounding terrain are situated to allow you to capture adequate natural power. For a home under construction, your builder should be able to offer guidance; for an existing home, contacting a local renewable energy organization or state office is a smart first step.

Cost Control
A state-of-the-art zoned climate control system can be configured to your specific needs, but all the customization options can make it tricky to predict how much your installation might cost. Taking into account these variables can give you a better sense of how much you'll be spending.

 New equipment. Each system includes an outdoor unit, indoor unit(s), controls and parts including the refrigerant line-set, wiring and electrical accessories. Conditioning one room or zone comes at a significantly different price than cooling and heating a home with eight or more zones. Generally, new equipment comes in between $3,000-$15,000, depending on the number of zones and size of the home.

Labor. This is what you will pay a licensed HVAC contractor to install the system (and remove your old one, if necessary). Contractors' labor prices vary widely, but expect to spend an amount roughly equal to your equipment cost, depending on your geographic location and the complexity of the installation.

Additional costs. Depending on your existing system, you may incur costs for items such as electrical work to install a new 240V outlet ($200-$1,000, or more if your electrical panel requires a new circuit); an equipment pad, stand or brackets for the outdoor unit ($50-$300); ductwork (prices vary greatly depending on the home); and controller options (approximately $200-$300 each).

Unique situations. Some homes, such as older homes, high-performance homes and homes in extreme cold-weather regions, often require auxiliary heat or specialized designs or equipment, all of which can impact the cost of the system. However, with Mitsubishi Electric's Zoned Comfort Solutions, 100 percent heating down to a 5 F outdoor temperature can be attained.

Rebates. Some states offer rebates for the installation of more energy-efficient appliances, including HVAC systems. These rebates can help offset some of the upfront costs associated with installing zoned systems. Consider speaking with a professional or researching available rebates in your region before purchasing a new system.


Source: Mitsubishi Electric Cooling & Heating



Nancy M. Alexander - Stone Harbor and Avalon NJ Real Estate NancyAlexander.com

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Avalon and Stone Harbor NJ Weekly Update August 24th, 2017


EVERYONE WAS LOOKING UP!  Monday afternoon nearly everyone who was outside was wearing a pair of eclipse glasses and looking up!  From the beach to the shopping districts to private decks,  everybody took a break from what they were doing in order to get a look at the solar eclipse.  Clouds moved in and out, but generally Cape May County had a great view!

Monday’s solar eclipse could be seen from Cape May County!

BEACH SAND varies from island to island along the New Jersey coast.  Ever wonder why?  It’s a mix of factors, including geology, weather & wave action, and even beach replenishment projects.  For a look at how these factors can affect the make up of beach sand, see this article: http://www.newsworks.org/index.php/local/new-jersey/106445-why-sand-doesnt-always-look-the-same-in-new-jersey

THE MIDATLANTIC Fishing Tournament is underway this week, as boats from as far away as Florida and Texas compete with other anglers out of Canyon Club Marina in Cape May.  This year 151 boats are chasing a total purse of $3,147,120.  So far a number of white marlin have been caught and released, and a lesser number of blue marlin have been caught and released.

PHILADELPHIA 76ERS SHORE TOUR:  Several 76ers will make appearances at the teams 2017 Summer Shore Tour this weekend.  In addition to stops in Ocean City and Diamond Beach, number 1 draft pick Markelle Fultz and teammate Robert Covington will be at the Stone Harbor Recreation Center at 82nd Street from 3pm to 6pm on Saturday, August 26th, where they will sign autographs and interact with fans.  Admission is free, or fans can purchase $20 or $25 all access passes.  A portion of the proceeds will benefit the Sixers Youth Foundation.

MOTORCARS in Cape May!  The Cape May Seashore Lines will be running motorcar excursions in Cape May over Labor Day Weekend.  The motorcars will depart from Cape May station on the hour from 10am to 3pm, Saturday and Sunday, September 2nd and 3rd.  The ride will traverse historic tracks that once carried steam powered passenger trains into Cape May on a regular basis.  The rails travel through lesser-known portions of Cape May, and provide a unique perspective on the wildlife, wetlands, and history of Cape May County.  The motorcars will stop at the railroad swing bridge that crosses the Cape May Canal, before returning to Cape May Station.  Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for kids 12 and under, and will be available for purchase on the station platform beginning at 9:30am.

UPCOMING EVENTS:
  • Stone Harbor Library Movie Night featuring The Jungle Book, 5:30PM, Thursday, August 24
  • Thursdays on Dune Concert featuring Jumper, family friendly activities throughout Avalon’s business district from 5:30PM, concert at Veteran’s Plaza at 7PM, Thursday, August 24
  • American Legion Post #331 Pancake Breakfast, 11625 Second Avenue in Stone Harbor, 8-11AM, Saturday, August 26
  • Stone Harbor’s Sidewalk Sale, sales & deals throughout the downtown shopping district, 9AM-7PM, Saturday, August 26
  • Stone Harbor Bird Sanctuary Tour, meet at Egret Espy Trail Entrance at 114th Street & Second Avenue, 10AM, Saturday, August 26
  • Stone Harbor Bird Sanctuary Tour, meet at Egret Espy Trail Entrance at 114th Street & Second Avenue, 10AM, Sunday, August 27
  • Wildwood’s Restaurant Week, Sunday, August 27 – Friday, September 1
  • Family Fun Night at the Stone Harbor Firehouse, 7-7:45PM, Monday, August 28
  • Tuesdays at the Tower, concert featuring The Seabillys, 95th Street Water Tower Plaza, 7PM, Tuesday, August 29
  • Stone Harbor 2nd Annual Kings & Queens of the Clay Tennis Tournament, tennis courts at 8100 Second Avenue, www.StoneHarborRecreation.com or 609-368-1210 for info, Saturday, September 2
  • Stone Harbor 1st Annual Summer Finale Pickleball Tournament, 8100 Second Avenue, www.StoneHarborRecreation.com or 368-1210 for info, Saturday & Sunday, September 2nd & 3rd
  • Full Moon Climb at the Cape May Lighthouse, call 609-884-5404 for info, 8-10PM, Wednesday, September 6
  • Big Band Dance featuring Marilyn and the Monroes, Avalon Community Hall, 7PM, Saturday, September 9
  • Avalon Chamber of Commerce End of Summer Shop Hop, Avalon Shopping District, www.visitavalon.nj.com for info, Saturday, September 9 & Sunday, September 10
  • Stone Harbor 9/11 Remembrance Ceremony, Freedom Park at 96th Street & Seng Place, 11AM-1PM, Monday, September 11
  • 22nd Annual Nun’s Beach Surf Contest, 111th Street beach in Stone Harbor, 7AM, Saturday, September 16
  • Author Lecture featuring Jerry Beebe, author of ‘The Backdoor Curve’, Avalon Free Public Library, 2-3PM, Saturday, September 16
  • Cape May Traditional Jazz Society Presents Ben Mauger’s Vintage Jazz Band, VFW Post #386, 419 Congress Street, Cape May, proceeds benefit the Food Bank of Southern NJ, 2-4PM, Sunday, September 17


Featured Property:

Enjoy bay views from this corner unit at Cornell Harbor!

43 Marine Way, Avalon, $855,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 176019


New Listings:

2170 Dune Drive, Avalon, $425,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177704

125 80th Street, Avalon, $749,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177769

491 21st Street, Avalon, $919,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177700

404 24th, Avalon, $1,559,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177783

265 87th Street, Stone Harbor, $1,925,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177721

305 76th Street, Avalon, $2,595,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177756

25 E. 23rd Street, Avalon, $3,295,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177703
 

Properties Sold:

206 110th, 2nd Floor Street, Stone Harbor, $500,000, SOLD MLS#: 176682

3108 Ocean Drive, Avalon, $1,425,000, SOLD MLS#: 175668

170 113 Street, Stone Harbor, $1,700,000, SOLD MLS#: 176848

168 28th Street, Avalon, $1,875,000, SOLD MLS#: 177692

4738 Ocean Drive, Avalon, $2,000,000, SOLD MLS#: 173542

8801 First Ave., Stone Harbor, $2,310,000, SOLD MLS#: 173715





Nancy M. Alexander - Stone Harbor and Avalon NJ Real Estate NancyAlexander.com

Monday, August 21, 2017

It's A Dog's Life For Millennials: What's Really Driving Their Desire To Buy A House

Is the millennial homebuying surge about finally "growing up" and giving up mom's home-cooked meals and laundry services? Is it about finally having student loans paid off and feeling secure enough to take on the financial burden? Perhaps it's really about getting ready to marry and have kids. Nope. Turns out none of these things could convince millennials to buy homes like their little furry friend could.

Yep, when it comes to millennial homeownership, these are the dog days.

"A third of millennial-aged Americans (ages 18 to 36) who purchased their first home (33%) say the desire to have a better space or yard for a dog influenced their decision to purchase their first home, according to a new survey conducted online by Harris Poll on behalf of SunTrust Mortgage. "Dogs ranked among the top three motivators for first-time home purchasers and were cited by more millennials than marriage/upcoming marriage, 25 percent, or the birth/expected birth of a child, 19 percent."


theboneadventure.com

There were only two factors that rated higher than dog ownership: 66 percent cited a desire for more living space, and 36 percent were interested in building equity through homeownership. Presumably, they want to do so with a pup by their side.

"Millennials have strong bonds with their dogs, so it makes sense that their furry family members are driving home-buying decisions," said Dorinda Smith, SunTrust Mortgage President and CEO of the survey. "For those with dogs, renting can be more expensive and a hassle; home ownership takes some of the stress off by providing a better living situation."

The survey also showed how strongly homebuyers that have not yet jumped into the market feel about this issue. Among millennials who have never purchased a home, "42 percent say that their dog - or the desire to have one - is a key factor in their desire to buy a home in the future, suggesting dogs will also influence purchase decisions of potential first-time homebuyers," they said.

Those statistics could have a real impact on multiple aspects of the real estate industry, from the way sellers stage their home; to the types of homes that builders and developers concentrate on in pockets where millennials may be looking; to pet-related homeowners' association bylaws that may be in need of review and revision. Most attached homes don't offer the kind of outdoor space millennials are looking for, but townhomes sometimes do, and they can be more affordable than single-family options; some communities have breed and size restrictions and also cap the number of dogs you can have - important considerations if you happen to be one of those dog-crazy millennial homebuyer types or are an agent who's representing one.



petsafe.net


Looking to sell your home and think you have a millennial target in your sights? Perhaps pointing out a good spot for a doggy door, if you don't already have one, and adding a picture of you and your dog (fake it if you need to!), a dog bed, and a basket with dog toys on the fireplace hearth before showings will help.

Pets before kids

Homeownership isn't the only thing millennials have delayed. Marriage and kids - if they're in the cards at all for millennials - are waiting. Pet ownership is not.
Millennials are in age brackets that are commonly associated with the idea of "settling down," said Pet Business. "But, rather than starting families with children, millennials are instead opting for buying or adopting pets to satisfy their caretaking needs." 

Pet ownership is up overall, led by millennials. The latest American Pet Products Association (APPA) National Pet Owners Survey shows that, "Sixty-eight percent of American households now own a pet, accounting for 84.6 million pet-owning households, up from 79.7 million pet-owning households in 2015," said Pet Food Industry. "Gen Y/millennial pet ownership has officially surpassed baby boomer ownership by three percentage points to now account for 35 percent of all pet owners."


Written by Jaymi Naciri




Nancy M. Alexander - Stone Harbor and Avalon NJ Real Estate NancyAlexander.com

Friday, August 18, 2017

4 Tips for Keeping Your Rental Property Secure


Burglaries are a concern for all home owners, but for landlords, they are an even bigger risk. Households living in rental properties experience burglaries at a higher rate than other households, Department of Justice statistics show. Households living in rental properties are more likely to be burglarized both when no one is home and when the property is occupied. This holds true across all categories of properties, regardless of income level, race or whether the household is composed of single or married persons.
This higher risk makes security an even more urgent priority for landlords than it does for typical homeowners. A high rate of burglary can make your property harder to rent and less valuable, while strong security features can be a strong selling point. Here are four tips to keep your rental properties secure.


Make It Look Like Someone Is Home

Burglars prefer to break into a property when no one is home. Almost all burglars will avoid breaking into a property when there are signs of someone home, such as a car in the driveway or a loud TV or radio, a survey of 86 convicted burglars found.
You can help protect your properties by taking steps to make it appear as if your tenants are home. This is especially important during holiday seasons when many tenants are away on vacation. If tenants will be away for a prolonged period, coordinate with them to arrange to have mail and newspapers picked up and snow shoveled while they’re away. Encourage them to leave a radio or TV on loudly while they’re out.

Deny Opportunities for Concealment

Burglars seek concealment and hate to be seen, so taking away opportunities for concealment can serve as an effective deterrent. One way to do this is by maintaining landscaping so that there are no bushes or trees burglars can use to hide behind as they approach properties. Landscaping can actually have a bigger deterrent effect on burglars than doors, locks and windows, police officers interviewed by the Sun-Sentinel advise. Keep all bushes and hedges trimmed to no higher than three feet so that they are not tall enough to provide concealment. Plant low, thorny bushes beneath windows, and make sure there are no tree branches near windows that can assist burglars trying to scale properties. Add loud gravel to make it hard to conceal the sound of footsteps.
Another way to deny concealment at night is to install motion sensors that trigger lights. Adding a visible camera will let burglars know their actions are being seen.

Use Locks Effectively

Locks are a crucial part of any security approach, but in order for locks to be effective, they need to be used correctly. For properties with many renters, commercial-grade mortise locks will stand up to frequent use better than other types of locks, advises Lock Blog locksmith expert Ralph Goodman. Anti-drill plates and security pins will reinforce basic locks.
At a minimum, locks should be rekeyed after each new tenant. However, some locks that are designed to be easy to rekey, such as the Kwikset SmartKey cylinder and the U-Change Lock, are also less secure, warns Goodman. For this reason, it is often better to change locks than to rekey them. Using a patented key will prevent a locksmith from making a duplicate key without your permission.

Install Secure Barriers



In addition to locks, it’s also important to install other strong barriers. Seventy percent of break-ins are done through the front door, FBI data shows. In 80 percent of these cases, the door frame fails when it is kicked or battered in. Strong doors and doorjambs will prevent doors from being kicked or rammed in. Security screen doors provide the strongest door defense. Window bars and reinforced glass or plexiglas will help buttress window security.

It’s also important to use strong barriers for outdoor areas of properties. Security gates and fences from a fully-licensed and insured provider such as Tampa fencing supplier Florida State Fence can help protect the perimeter of your properties. Make sure that garage doors and windows are also secure. For automatic garage door openers, use a zip-tie to secure the safety release so that thieves can’t bypass it with a coat hanger.


Written by Realty Times Staff







Nancy M. Alexander - Stone Harbor and Avalon NJ Real Estate NancyAlexander.com

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Avalon and Stone Harbor NJ Weekly Update August 17th, 2017


MARKET STATS:  The median sale price during the month of July was $969,000, up versus last July.  The average number of “days on market” decreased slightly to 198, while the number of active listings is down 21% compared to last year.  Strong demand and reduced inventory continue to drive the market.  For more market stats, see the latest Long & Foster Market Minute report:  http://marketminute.longandfoster.com/Market-Minute/NJ/Avalon-Stone-Harbor.pdf
See the latest Long & Foster Market Minute report for July market stats.

TRICK SHOTS=HAPPY FACES!  THE HARLEM GLOBETROTTERS return to Wildwood again this year, where they’ll play four games and host daily clinics through Saturday, August 19th.   Fans of all ages will be smiling at both the Globetrotters’ stunning basketball talent and their ability to entertain a crowd.  Kicking off this year’s appearance, Globetrotter Bull Bullard made an incredible shot—from a helicopter, 210 feet in the air!  Order your game or clinic tickets here:  http://www.harlemglobetrotters.com/wildwood   

Globetrotter Bull Bullard sinks a basket from a helicopter!


AVALON ANCHORAGE MEMORIES:  More than 400 photographs taken at Avalon Anchorage decades ago are on display at the Avalon History Center.  The photographs depict local fisherman young and old, displaying their catches upon returning to Avalon Anchorage after fishing trips.  The photos were displayed for years at Avalon Anchorage.  Thanks to extensive restoration by Seven Mile Times, they can be seen again for the first time in more than 30 years.  Stop by the Avalon History Center from 10am to 4pm Tuesday through Sunday.
 
FASCINATING FACTS ABOUT SHELLS:  Those who comb the beaches find all kinds of interesting shells, plus other forms of sea life.  This interesting article from NJ.com describes “11 Fascinating Facts About Shells and Other Things” you find on the beach.  Check it out:  http://www.nj.com/entertainment/index.ssf/2017/08/fun_facts_about_shells.html
 
CATCH THE ECLIPSE ON MONDAY!  In our area about three quarters of the sun will be blocked by the moon for around a half hour Monday afternoon.  If we have clear skies, we’ll have a great view—but don’t look at the sun, even partially obscured, with unprotected eyes.  Sunglasses don’t offer enough protection—only approved solar viewing glasses or filters should be used.  For everything you need to know about the eclipse (and more), click here:  https://eclipse2017.nasa.gov/
 
UPCOMING EVENTS:
  • Thursdays on Dune Concert featuring Boy in Black Johnny Cash tribute, family friendly activities throughout Avalon’s business district from 5:30 PM, concert at Veteran’s Plaza at 7PM, Thursday, August 17
  • Stone Harbor Bird Sanctuary Tour, meet at the Egret Espy Trail Entrance at 114th Street & Second Avenue, 10AM, Saturday, August 19
  • Creative Writing Seminar, tips & feedback on poetry, memoirs, stories, article & books, Avalon Free Public Library, register at 609-967-7155, 10AM-Noon, Saturday, August 19
  • Stone Harbor’s Go Green Fair, 95th Street Water Tower Plaza, 11AM-2PM, Saturday, August 19
  • Bay Atlantic Symphony Concert, Avalon Elementary School, tickets are required & are available through the Avalon Free Public Library, 7PM, Saturday, August 19
  • Historic Garden Lecture with History Center Collections Coordinator Bonita Risley, Avalon Free Public Library, 7PM, Monday, August 21
  • Family Fun Night at the Stone Harbor Firehouse, 7-7:45PM, Monday, August 21
  • Tuesdays at the Tower, concert featuring The Malarkey Brothers, 95th Street Water Tower Plaza, 7PM, Tuesday, August 22
  • Avalon’s Beach Movie featuring ‘Jurrasic Park,’ 30th Street & the beach, dusk, Tuesday, August 22
  • Cape May Summer Concert Series featuring Mary Wilson of the Supremes, Cape May Convention Hall, 609-884-9565 for info & tickets, Wednesday, August 23
  • Thursdays on Dune Concert featuring Jumper, family friendly activities throughout Avalon’s business district from 5:30PM, concert at Veteran’s Plaza at 7PM, Thursday, August 24
  • American Legion Post #331 Pancake Breakfast, 11625 Second Avenue in Stone Harbor, 8-11AM, Saturday, August 26
  • Stone Harbor’s Sidewalk Sale, sales & deals throughout the downtown shopping district, 9AM-7PM, Saturday, August 26
  • Stone Harbor Bird Sanctuary Tour, meet at Egret Espy Trail Entrance at 114th Street & Second Avenue, 10AM, Saturday, August 26
  • Stone Harbor Bird Sanctuary Tour, meet at Egret Espy Trail Entrance at 114th Street & Second Avenue, 10AM, Sunday, August 27
  • Family Fun Night at the Stone Harbor Firehouse, 7-7:45PM, Monday, August 28
  • Full Moon Climb at the Cape May Lighthouse, call 609-884-5404 for info, 8-10PM, Wednesday, September 6
  • 22nd Annual Nun’s Beach Surf Contest, 111th Street beach in Stone Harbor, 7AM, Saturday, September 16
  • Author Lecture featuring Jerry Beebe, author of ‘The Backdoor Curve’, Avalon Free Public Library, 2-3PM, Saturday, September 16
  • Cape May Traditional Jazz Society Presents Ben Mauger’s Vintage Jazz Band, VFW Post #386, 419 Congress Street, Cape May, proceeds benefit the Food Bank of Southern NJ, 2-4PM, Sunday, September 17



Nancy M. Alexander - Stone Harbor and Avalon NJ Real Estate NancyAlexander.com

Monday, August 14, 2017

Home Safety: Best Places to Put Security Cameras

By Cary Teller
If you've decided to put up security cameras for your home for the first time or are considering widening your safety net, knowing the proper way to place and angle your cameras is vital to keeping your home as safe as it can be. Not only can proper camera placement catch important details of possible crimes in your area, simply placing them properly can deter a crime from happening in the first place.

The most important factor in judging where to place a camera is simple: Your home is your home. You know what the layout is, you know where the most important rooms are, and you may be in the unfortunate position of knowing how someone entered your home without your permission in the past. Before you begin placing any equipment, consider some basic questionsabout your home's surveillance needs. Some questions to consider include:
  • What parts of your home are you most concerned about?
  • If someone has broken into your home before, even before you owned it, where did that occur?
  • Are there any spots on my property that aren't plainly visible to the street or my neighbors?
  • Do you need to keep any local camera placement laws in mind?
Though you may come to a variety of conclusions and potential diagrams for your home security systems and their needs, consider the usual entry points for potential burglars when casing a home. Knowing the most common routes of entry can take a large portion of the workload off of you simply by observing recorded statistics. With over 80 percent of burglars entering a home through the first floor, whether through door or window, it's especially important to keep the entirety of your property's entryways covered. At the same time, trying to cover low locales such as your doors and windows may leave cameras in easy reach of criminals, thus completely negating their usefulness.
If you find you have a lack of safe places to place a camera, consider looking into protective caging for your equipment to protect it from being knocked out of order while you aren't looking. This is also a good time to contemplate what special tools you may need to complete your installation, so ensure you check your camera system to see it's recommended outfitting requirements that might need special preparations.
While losing a camera can mean losing important evidence to help identify vandals or thieves, there are clever ways to keep yourself safe that might goad a criminal into making a misstep. Placing a dummy camera in obvious sight not only deters crime by showing you keep your home under tight watch, it also gives an easy target to a potential burglar that can distract them from hidden cameras that catch them in the act. As an added bonus, dummy cameras are far cheaper to replace than expensive professional models.
Most importantly, you must consider the needs of each camera when placing it. Cameras cannot focus on multiple ranges and angles at once, so if you want to catch a trespasser's facial features, mounting your camera up too high can blur distinctive features, but a raised camera may have a better time picking up a car's license plate when placed overlooking your driveway.
In the end, even poorly-placed cameras will offer better home security than not having any at all, but there's no reason to leave proper home security to chance. Knowing how to place your first line of defense can keep you safe before and after any crime, and knowledge is always your best weapon.



Nancy M. Alexander - Stone Harbor and Avalon NJ Real Estate NancyAlexander.com

Saturday, August 12, 2017

5 Ways to Help Your Community

(Family Features)—Social responsibility comes in all shapes and sizes, but ultimately it comes down to one common purpose: making the world a better place. From volunteering at local shelters and community centers to feeding those in need at your local food bank, there are countless ways to give back within your community.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, only 25 percent of people in the U.S. volunteered in 2015. However, studies on health and volunteering show that people who volunteer report feeling emotionally, mentally and physically better. Multiple studies show that volunteering has been linked to lower stress levels, lower levels of depression and longevity.

If that's not incentive enough, lending support to organizations in your community can often bring immediate and tangible results that give you a connection and sense of community. There are some programs that even enable people to make a difference by matching them with volunteer or funding opportunities.

"It's exciting to see communities strengthened by their residents," says Angela Allen, program manager for the America's Farmers Grow Communities program, which focuses on supporting local nonprofits in rural communities with the help of local farmers. "The good news is there are several simple and easy ways people can get involved in their communities and make a difference.”




Here are five ways that you can lend a hand:

Volunteering. Nonprofit organizations rely on the support of loyal donors and volunteers to deliver on their missions to improve the communities they serve. Time and talent are among the most valuable gifts you can give a deserving cause. One of the greatest benefits of volunteering is the chance to put your energy and abilities to use for a cause you care about, whether it's feeding the hungry, rescuing animals or some other cause that is close to your heart. Volunteering provides a feel-good way to pursue your personal interests.

Giving blood. According to the American Red Cross, every two seconds someone in the U.S. needs blood. There is an ongoing need to replenish a communities' blood supplies, whether for medical uses or in the aftermath of a tragedy. Giving blood is fast, relatively painless and can save lives.

Donating. Money doesn't make the world go 'round, or so the saying goes. However, it can make a difference when it comes to bettering the community. Nonprofit and community organizations rely on monetary contributions not only to fulfill their existing program needs, but also to expand those services to impact more people. Rather than a single, one-time gift, consider setting up an ongoing donation so your impact continues over time. For small or rural nonprofits in particular, a little bit goes a long way. Another touching way to donate funds: give in honor of a loved one, either as a gift for a special occasion or in memoriam. Rather than giving your parents a gift for Mother's Day or Father's Day, think about a small donation to their favorite charity.

Applying for funding opportunities. Another way to help your community thrive is by exploring avenues to create new funding opportunities for nonprofits. For example, the America's Farmers Grow Communities program provides farmers an opportunity to help a nonprofit of their choice. Eligible farmers can enroll in the program until November 1 at GrowCommunities.com for a chance to direct a $2,500 donation to a local eligible nonprofit organization. Since 2010, the program has given more than $26 million to nonprofits, including food banks, emergency response organizations, youth agriculture programs and more.

Paying it forward. Not every step you take in support of your community has to be a large one; in fact, the ripple effect of a series of smaller deeds can have a truly momentous impact. You can set the feel-good wheels in motion in your own community by simply thinking about a time when someone generously gave their own resources to benefit you and paying forward that kindness with a matching endeavor. You might let a frenzied mom go ahead of you in line at the grocery store or pay for a meal for the elderly couple behind you at the drive-thru. Small gestures spread a feel-good spirit that can encourage others to do their part to make the community a better place, as well.

These are just a few ways that you can give back. Get out and meet with your friends and neighbors in your community to discover how you can best use your time and talents to help the greater good.

Source: Family Features Editorial Syndicate


Nancy M. Alexander - Stone Harbor and Avalon NJ Real Estate NancyAlexander.com

Friday, August 11, 2017

What You Should Know Before Buying A Condominium

Condos were once thought of as homes that attracted singles or couples, often without children. But today, condos are growing in popularity and attracting families of all sizes.

Condos can be an excellent choice for the right buyers. Here are a few things that should considered before purchasing a condo. Most buyers start with the condo itself. That may be a good place to begin but, before they buy, buyers should also consider other factors outside of the condo.

Some developers are building condos that have a look and feel like single-family homes. These modern condos have great rooms and open, flowing floor plans that look and feel like a single-family home rather than an apartment or condo.

One of the major attractions of condos is the low maintenance. The community area is maintained by an association funded by the dues that homeowners pay into it.

That's why buyers' first consideration should be to explore the development and make sure they like the look and feel of the complex and surrounding community. There are codes and restrictions, often referred to as CC&Rs (covenants, codes, and restrictions) that buyers will have to abide by once they purchase a condo. Buyers should ask to review them before making an offer to purchase a condo. These regulations help ensure that the community maintains its general appearance and any necessary repairs of the external areas.

Review the association's budget. It may be necessary to get the seller to provide this information because it may not be released to a non-owner who is only a potential buyer. However, in considering buying into a development, it's almost like going into business with the neighbors in the complex. It's important to make sure that the association is running properly and has enough of a reserve for necessary expenses and maintenance. The budget and CC&Rs will give an idea about how stable the association is and if increases in the homeowners' association dues are likely each year.

Find out how many owners in the development are delinquent on their dues. A condo complex that has a high level of delinquencies can cause problems for buyers when it comes time to get a loan or sell the condo. Some loans are not approved if delinquency rates are higher than 15 percent.



Review the minutes from the association's board meetings. They will reveal the day-to-day issues that occur each month and give an indication of how the development is run. For instance, lots of complaints and filings about noisy residents, loud parties, or dog droppings on the lawn reveal potential problems with neighbors. The minutes will also reveal if the development is engaged in any lawsuits.

Understand what your responsibilities are for the upkeep of the condo. Find out what the association takes care of and what the homeowners have to maintain. Look at the association's property management team and see how many times the association has changed management companies. Find out why. This will may reveal how responsive the association will be should residents need its assistance.

Ultimately, buyers need to ensure that when they purchase a condo they're not buying into any legal battles the association is in the middle of and that they will be able to live in their condo the way they want. Study the CC&Rs and do due diligence before buying.


Written by Realty Times Staff

Nancy M. Alexander - Stone Harbor and Avalon NJ Real Estate NancyAlexander.com

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Avalon and Stone Harbor NJ Weekly Update August 10th, 2017


THE AVALON HOME AND LAND OWNERS ASSOCIATION’S annual meeting will take place Saturday, August 12th, at Avalon Community Hall.  Mayor Martin Pagliughi will review the “State of the Borough” and County Engineer Dale Foster will address “County Projects in Avalon.”  Both will take questions after their talks.  All are welcome; refreshments will be served at 9:30am, and the meeting will begin at 10am.

Sailors furl their sails on the way back to the dock, as daylight gives way to evening.


“DOLPHIN WHISPERER” Nik Pattantyus has become well known for his dolphin videos, filmed while on his paddleboard just off Seven Mile Beach.  Philly.com recently ran a great story on Nik and his videos…check it out here:
http://www.philly.com/philly/news/new_jersey/shore/dolphin-whisperer-stone-harbor-jersey-shore-20170803.html

HOUSE PORTRAITS by Lisa Cunningham…What a great way to permanently capture your seashore memories!   Imagine displaying your pride & joy either at your home or office…check out http://www.lisacunninghamfineart.com/ for details.

Lisa Cunningham’s House Portraits capture the essence of your shore home!

SEA ISLE BEACHCOMBER TOURS:
  Volunteer guides lead beachcomber tours each week on Sea Isle City’s beaches.  On each tour participants scour the beach for shells and other items, which are identified by the tour guide.  The tour costs only $1 for adults or children, and leave from Sea Isle’s 29th Street Promenade at 10am every Tuesday, and every Thursday from the Pavillion at Townsend’s Inlet Waterfront Park, through August 31st.  Simply check in with the tour guide before departure.

FOX ON THE BEACH!  While your combing Sea Isle’s beach, be on the lookout for a fox that’s been spotted several times.  Officials have attempted to trap the fox in order to relocate it to Atlantic County, but thus far have been unsuccessful.

PLANNING AHEAD!  There’s plenty of summer fun remaining but it’s never too early to line up some events on Seven Mile Island for September and October.  Mark your calendars now:  22nd Annual Nun’s Beach Surf Contest, 111th Street beach, 7am Saturday, September 16th; 6th Annual Savor September Festival, 96th Street, Saturday, September 23rd; Avalon Seafood Festival, 30th Street & the beach, Saturday & Sunday, October 7th & 8th.

258 PROPERTIES have sold in the local market since the first of the year; 85 more are currently under contract.  Why not join the fun and purchase your very own beach home?  Call me and I’ll help you find the perfect shore retreat for your needs!

UPCOMING EVENTS:
  • Thursdays on Dune Concert featuring Jersey Sound, family friendly activities throughout Avalon’s business district from 5:30PM, concert at Veteran’s Plaza at 7PM, Thursday, August 10
  • Thursdays on the Lawn concert featuring Jim Bannach of BLT, St. Mary’s Episcopal Church in Stone Harbor, 7:30PM, Thursday, August 10
  • Cape Regional Home & Health Show, Avalon Elementary School, 9AM-2PM, Saturday, August 12
  • Avalon Home & Land Owners Association Annual Meeting featuring Avalon Mayor Marty Pagluighi & County Engineer Dale Foster, Avalon Community Hall, refreshments at 9:30AM, meeting at 10AM, Saturday, August 12
  • Stone Harbor Bird Sanctuary Tour, meet at the Egret Espy Trail Entrance at 114th Street & Second Avenue, 10AM, Saturday, August 12
  • Stone Harbor’s Go Green Fair, 95th Street Water Tower Plaza, 11AM-2PM, Saturday, August 12
  • Cape Regional Designer House Tour, 609-463-4040 for info & tickets, 11AM-4PM, Saturday, August 12
  • Summer Club Concert Sounds of Sinatra, Avalon Community Hall, 8PM, Saturday, August 12
  • Stone Harbor Surf & Turf 5 Miler, Stone Harbor Recreation Field at 8100 Second Avenue, registration at 6:45 AM, race at 8AM, Sunday, August 13
  • Stone Harbor Farmers Market, 95th Street Water Tower Plaza, 8AM-12:30PM, Sunday, August 13
  • Stone Harbor Bird Sanctuary Tour, meet at Egret Espy Trail Entrance at 114th Street & Second Avenue, 10AM, Sunday, August 13
  • Cape May Traditional Jazz Society Presents the Atlantic City Jazz Band, VFW Post #386, 419 Congress Street, Cape May, proceeds benefit the Food Bank of South Jersey, 2-4PM, Sunday, August 13
  • Family Fun Night at the Stone Harbor Firehouse, 7-7:45PM, Monday, August 14
  • Under the Stars, Upcoming Eclipse presentation by the SJ Astronomy Club, Avalon Free Public Library, 7:30PM, Monday, August 14
  • Tuesdays at the Tower, concert featuring the Dan Anthony Band, 95th Street Water Tower Plaza, 7PM, Tuesday, August 15
  • Avalon’s Beach Movie featuring ‘Storks,’ 30th Street & the beach, dusk, Tuesday, August 15
  • Avalon Free Public Library Summer Author Series featuring Dr. Paul Offit discussing Pandora’s Lab: Seven Stories of Science Gone Wrong, Do You Believe in Magic (Vitamins, Supplements and all Things Natural), 7-8:00PM, Wednesday, August 16
  • Thursdays on Dune Concert featuring Boy in Black Johnny Cash tribute, family friendly activities throughout Avalon’s business district from 5:30PM, concert at Veteran’s Plaza at 7PM, Thursday, August 17
  • Bay Atlantic Symphony Concert, Avalon Elementary School, tickets are required & are available through the library 2 weeks prior to the performance, 7PM, Saturday, August 19

Featured Property:

This oceanfront home sits in an extraordinary location, nestled in Avalon’s high dunes!

5609 Dune Drive, Avalon, $8,950,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 175053


New Listings:

414 Avalon Boulevard, Avalon Manor, $150,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177559

9816 Second Avenue, Stone Harbor, $310,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177566

2828 Avalon Avenue, Avalon, $449,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177586

10105 Second Avenue, Stone Harbor, $635,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177531

161 101st Street, Stone Harbor, $1,795,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177508

246 103rd Street, Stone Harbor, $1,950,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177573

211 121st Street, Stone Harbor, $1,975,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177509

211 103rd Street, Stone Harbor, $1,999,500, ACTIVE MLS#: 177520

179 114th Street, Stone Harbor, $2,150,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177515

302 42nd Street, Avalon, $2,195,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177590

59 Channel Road, Avalon Manor, $2,495,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177572

249 101st Street, Stone Harbor, $2,888,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177525

9 98th Street, Stone Harbor, $2,950,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177558

50 E. 14 Street, Avalon, $3,595,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177494

130 74th Street, Avalon, $7,900,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 177571


Properties Sold:

243 20th Street, Avalon, $725,000, SOLD MLS#: 173891

11008 Second Avenue, Stone Harbor, $1,375,000, SOLD MLS#: 172957

148 20th Street, Avalon, $1,882,000, SOLD MLS#: 173890

551 Berkley Road, Stone Harbor, $2,800,000, SOLD MLS#: 172086




Nancy M. Alexander - Stone Harbor and Avalon NJ Real Estate NancyAlexander.com