Jane C Hoffmann | Boston Real Estate, Milton Real Estate, Quincy Real Estate, Hingham Real Estate


Clogged drains are one of the common preventable plumbing issues that occur in the home. Places that are more vulnerable to this problem are the toilet, showers, and the sink. In most cases, drain blockage is because of the accumulation of debris.  You might not be able to fix the issue yourself if you had neglected the problem for a long time. Therefore, quick intervention is one way to get it fixed without calling for help. A clogged drain can cause remarkable structural damage because of the build-up of overflow and backups. Apart from that, it can lead to the development of mildew and mold in the home. Your best strategy against this plumbing problem is to embark on preventive drain maintenance. 

What causes clogged drains? 

Drain blockage is because of prolonged negligence. For instance, the kitchen sink gets blocked when food particles and grease accumulate in the drainpipe until a point where it obstructs the movement of water.  The toilet is another part of the house that gets clogged. When you flush the items that are not ideal for flushing, the toilet gets blocked. Such things are paper, towel, and other similar materials. Also, the sink of bathtubs and bathroom can get blocked by hair, toothpaste, and other everyday products used in the bathroom. You can prevent clogging by making sure you that you follow the drain maintenance tips below:

  • Avoid combing your hair or styling over the drain as the hair blocks the pipes.
  • Grease can accumulate in the drainpipe, so do not wash it down the kitchen sink. The best way to dispose of used oil is to pour it into a dedicated container for disposal.
  • Soap scum, hair, food, oils, grease, and other debris can clog the pipe, therefore make sure you don’t introduce any of them into your kitchen sink.  
  • Cold water can displace stuck food particle, so it is advisable to run chilled water whenever you are making use of a garbage disposal
  • Never wash coffee ground down the drain; you should throw them away.
  • Do not dispose of chemicals through the drain; look for other ways to eliminate them.
  • An excellent way to keep hair from entering the pipe is by covering your bathtub and bathroom sink.
  • A good preventive maintenance habit is to pour boiling water down all the drains once every month.  By going this, you will dislodge debris. 

You can avoid clogged drains and all its attendant effects if you follow all the preventive measures mentioned above. However, if you still experience a clogged drain after taking all these precautions, contact your plumber to get it fixed. 


People downsize their living-space for all kinds of reasons. Making the decision to downsize shouldn't be a negative experience and shouldn't feel like your downgrading your home. Follow these tips to level up your lifestyle and home enjoyment while downsizing your accommodations.

Find a space that works for you.

You might be moving from a large home with a big kitchen or dining area to a more compact condo or cottage and feel like you're losing a lot of space. Think about how your current home is laid out and what parts you utilize the most. If you love your big kitchen, then search for a highly functional, if smaller, kitchen space. Pay attention to how you move through your kitchen now, is it fluid to go between different cooking, prep and cleaning areas? You might find that in reality, you run around your kitchen and loose efficiency. Look for a more compact, but well-appointed kitchen in your new home search and find an even better space for the cooking and entertaining you love. 

Modernize your home view.

Your current home may have significant square footage, but how is it laid out? Are there lots of walls and hallways separating your rooms? What height are your ceilings? Does your house have a plethora of windows? Many modern homes have great open layouts. Shared space—a kitchen that opens to your living room, for example—makes both areas feel more substantial. Consider a condo or loft that has extra high ceilings and employ vertical storage to give height and openness to your living space. Finally, windows, windows, windows. Look for a home with large windows, and lots of them. Opening your house up to the beautiful outdoors and letting in lots of natural light gives your home the most added feeling of enlarged space. 

Make your new rooms work double for you.

  • Invest in a home with open kitchen, living, and dining spaces so you can entertain and remain a part of the activity while creating a meal or prepping drinks.
  • Combine your office, guest and craft rooms into one multi-functional space. Use modern storage and office systems to keep your room organized and ready to use for any purpose. Find a great sofa bed for seating and guest use or go old-school with a built-in Murphy bed with added shelving on the exterior. 
  • Use combination appliances like a stacking washer and dryer or upgrade to front loading systems that you can put under the countertop or build a worktable over.
  • Look for outdoor space that maximizes your interior space. French doors or a big sliding door that opens your living or dining room up to your patio expands your useable entertaining space. Find a home with a balcony off the master bedroom and extend your feeling of outdoor space. 

Amenities. Amenities. Amenities. 

In your home search consider narrowing in on communities with amenities that improve your lifestyle. Community gyms, pools, clubhouses, dog parks, and even a golf course are great opportunities to add to your lifestyle and help you make new connections. Properties with large green areas, barbecue pits, and trees make you feel like the whole community is your backyard. Associations that take care of maintaining your yard or washing windows can reduce the time you spend on home upkeep and free you up to live your life.

No matter the reason for your downsize take the smart steps to make it work for you and help you upgrade your living. Before you start your home search consult with your real estate professional about the best way to find the right space for you.


At it’s best, packing and moving your things when you buy a new home is a lot of work. At its worst, it can be downright dangerous if you aren’t careful when lifting and moving heavy items.

A necessary evil of moving to a new home, packing is probably the least favorite part of moving for your average homeowner. However, there are ways you can make this process easier, saving you time and ensuring that decorating your new homes is a simple and satisfying task.

In today’s post, I’m going to run down the list of 5 packing and moving tips to help make your move faster and easier than you thought possible.

1. Cleaning and decluttering

One of the best times to clean out your home is leading up to a move. First, if you’re selling your old home, it will pay off to make the house as clean and uncluttered as possible to attract potential buyers. However, you’ll also likely find that there is a lot of junk that you simply don't need to bring to your new home.

When packing each room, keep a garbage bag with you for things you might want to donate or throw away. A good rule of thumb is to ask yourself if you’ve used or appreciated the item in the last two years. If not, you might find that it’s easier just to get rid of.

2. Schedule your packing

There are some items in your home that you’ll want available up until the day you move. Others you might not need for weeks or months until after you’ve settled into your new home. You can lessen your workload by spreading out your packing process across the span of a month or so, tackling a few items each week.

A good example of planned packing is to start packing your seasonal clothing that you won’t need until the next winter or summer.

3. Have someone carry away your old junk

If you have bulk items or furniture that you plan on getting rid of, put them on Craigslist or call a donation center with pick-up a month in advance of your move. This will help you get rid of large items without ever having to leave your home.

4. Hiring movers

Hiring movers might be out of some new homeowners’ budgets. However, there are certain times of the week that you can get lower prices. Movers are typically the busiest on the weekend, often making weekdays a more affordable alternative.

5. Find your local box stockpile

There’s typically no need to spend money on boxes if you give yourself enough time to find a good supplier. Some grocery and department stores will give away their boxes for free because you’re saving them on recycling costs.

Another good option is your local liquor store who probably has several empty wine and beer cases to give away.


The process of finding and purchasing your dream house may prove to be difficult, regardless of whether you are an experienced or first-time homebuyer. Fortunately, there are many things you can do to avoid hurdles as you navigate the homebuying journey.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you quickly discover a quality home at an affordable price.

1. Narrow Your Home Search

Understand what you want to find in your dream home. Then, you can enter the housing market with a plan in hand to discover your ideal residence.

To narrow your home search, think about the features you require from a home. If you need a house that offers multiple bedrooms, for example, you can hone your house search accordingly. Or, if you want a home that boasts an outdoor swimming pool, you can search for a house that matches your expectations.

Don't forget to consider where you want to reside as well. That way, you can narrow your house search to a select group of cities and towns.

2. Establish a Homebuying Budget

If you know you want to buy a home soon, you may want to search for a mortgage. Because if you begin a home search with a mortgage at your disposal, you will know how much you can spend on a house.

To obtain a mortgage, you should meet with a variety of banks and credit unions. These financial institutions can teach you about different mortgage options and help you make an informed home financing selection.

Also, you can always ask mortgage questions when you meet with financial institutions. If you receive expert insights into assorted home financing options, you can choose the right mortgage.

3. Work with a Real Estate Agent

If you collaborate with a real estate agent, you can receive plenty of assistance as you navigate the homebuying journey. And as a result, you could streamline your search for your dream house.

A real estate agent is a homebuying specialist who is ready to help you accomplish your desired results. For instance, if you want to acquire a budget-friendly home in the city of your choice, a real estate agent can help you do just that. On the other hand, if you are looking to buy a house that provides convenient access to your office, a real estate agent can help you map out your house search so you can quickly find your dream home.

In addition, a real estate agent can help you submit a competitive offer to purchase your ideal house. And once a seller accepts your offer to purchase, a real estate agent will help you finalize your home purchase.

Finding and purchasing a home sometimes can be tricky. Thanks to the aforementioned tips, however, you can simplify your quest to buy your ideal residence. Perhaps best of all, these tips may make it easy for you to navigate the homebuying journey like a pro.


Let's face it – all homebuyers want to enjoy a fast, successful property buying experience. Yet transforming this vision into a reality can be difficult for first-time and experienced property buyers alike. Lucky for you, we're here to help you streamline the homebuying journey.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you enjoy a seamless homebuying experience.

1. Understand the Challenges Associated with Pursuing a Home

Planning ahead for the homebuying journey generally is a good idea. That way, you can identify potential homebuying hurdles and resolve these issues before they escalate.

Oftentimes, it helps to craft a homebuying strategy. This plan enables you to map out each stage of the homebuying journey, and by doing so, prepare for any challenges that may come your way.

You also may want to create a list of homebuying criteria. This list will make it simple to narrow your house search, and as a result, ensure you can discover your ideal residence without delay.

2. Get Your Finances in Order

You know you want to purchase a house, but you still have no idea about how you will pay for a residence. Fortunately, if you get pre-approved for a mortgage, you can enter the real estate market with your finances in order.

To get pre-approved for a mortgage, you should meet with banks and credit unions. These financial institutions can explain the differences between fixed- and adjustable-rate mortgages and help you determine which mortgage option best suits your individual needs.

Furthermore, you should review all of your mortgage options closely. Because if you understand your mortgage options, you can make an informed mortgage selection that will serve you well for years to come.

3. Hire an Expert Real Estate Agent

If you want to simplify the homebuying journey, you should hire an expert real estate agent. In fact, with an expert real estate agent at your side, you can get the help you need to quickly and effortlessly make your homeownership dream come true.

A real estate agent is a homebuying professional who is happy to share his or her expertise with you. Therefore, if you have any concerns or questions during the homebuying journey, a real estate agent can respond to them immediately. And if you are uncertain about how to proceed at any point during the homebuying journey, a real estate agent can offer data-driven recommendations as well.

Let's not forget about the assistance that a real estate agent can provide when you decide to submit an offer to purchase a home too. At this time, a real estate agent will help you put together a competitive homebuying proposal. And if your offer is accepted, a real estate agent will help you finalize your house purchase. Or, if your proposal is rejected, a real estate agent will help you reenter the real estate market.

Take the guesswork out of acquiring your dream house – use the aforementioned tips, and you can boost the likelihood of enjoying a fast, successful property buying experience.




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