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Home Guru: It’s Again Time to Dust Off the Subject of Household Dust

Home Guru: It’s Again Time to Dust Off the Subject of Household Dust

By Bill Primavera Have you ever heard of a dust fetish? I reluctantly admit to at least a keen interest in the subject, having alluded to it a couple of times in my column musings. Recently I learned about a new study conducted by a group of scientists who had collected dust samples from 1,200 […]

Home Guru: The Lighter Side of Victorian: Wicker Furniture

Home Guru: The Lighter Side of Victorian: Wicker Furniture

By Bill Primavera When my wife and I owned an antiques shop early in our marriage, there was a revival of interest in the Victorian style of décor, and I can’t say that we were enthusiastic about it. This style from the second half of the 19th century was known for plush, heavily upholstered furniture […]

Home Guru:  Enjoying the Benefits of Occasionally Unplugging at Home

Home Guru: Enjoying the Benefits of Occasionally Unplugging at Home

By Bill Primavera When it comes to technology, I may not be cutting edge, but I try my very best to adapt to what’s new as quickly as I can. What choice does one have in today’s business world, or social whirl, for that matter? From the first cube-like Macintosh in my home office to […]

Home Guru: How Homeowners Feel About (or Fear) Maintenance Needs

Home Guru: How Homeowners Feel About (or Fear) Maintenance Needs

By Bill Primavera  According to a survey just released by ServiceMaster, it is reported that a whopping 92 percent of homeowners feel unprepared to address home maintenance needs. How could that be, I wondered? With all the DIY resources we have on television and online, and especially if we’re young homeowners, surely we feel more […]

The Home Guru: State’s New Mold Law Viewed as ‘A Little Crazy’

The Home Guru: State’s New Mold Law Viewed as ‘A Little Crazy’

By Bill Primavera – If you find that you have mold in your home and want it removed, you may be in for a surprise by the set of procedures now required to comply with a new law enacted in January by New York State to regulate its remediation. According to two suppliers in the field […]

The Home Guru: In a Major Political Year, Equal Time for Red and Blue

The Home Guru: In a Major Political Year, Equal Time for Red and Blue

By Bill Primavera – Recently when I wrote a column dedicated to decorating in red, I received a comment from a reader asking whether my personal devotion to the color was politically motivated. Honestly, the thought never entered my mind; however, I thought that it was certainly a creative association. When it was suggested by that […]

The Home Guru: For Some the Laundry Room is the Heart of the House

The Home Guru: For Some the Laundry Room is the Heart of the House

By Bill Primavera – In most homes, it is said that the kitchen is the heart of the house. But I’ve been with buyers who seem to place as much importance, if not more, on the laundry room. Personally, I remember how surprised I was when I came across one of my first buyers who was […]

Home Guru: Story of Realtor Dangers That Everyone Should Know

Home Guru: Story of Realtor Dangers That Everyone Should Know

By Bill Primavera – The next time you go to a realtor’s open house and are asked to show photo identification or if a realtor insists on meeting at the office for the first time rather than at a property don’t take it personally. He or she is following safety precautions given by an office manager, […]

The Home Guru: A Shorthand Method to a Work-Free Garden

The Home Guru: A Shorthand Method to a Work-Free Garden

By Bill Primavera – When I was younger, a feeling of near euphoria would greet me at the first breath of spring, as I would anticipate my first days in the garden. Year after year, I could always be assured that I had at least five or six months ahead of me where, whenever stressed, all […]

Home Guru: Important Pointers for Homeowners With Space to Rent

Home Guru: Important Pointers for Homeowners With Space to Rent

By Bill Primavera – Since my marriage, my wife and I have owned three homes and each of them provided for either a two-family or an accessory apartment arrangement, which, especially when we were young, helped keep the wolf from the door. Once moving to Westchester and realizing at a certain point that our taxes had […]

Home Guru: A Change in Perception About Getting Rid of ‘Stuff’

Home Guru: A Change in Perception About Getting Rid of ‘Stuff’

By Bill Primavera – For many years Jennifer Gurahian has been my recommended source for handling estate sales whenever I’ve had clients who were downsizing. Only now when I am engaging her services myself have I experienced a change of perception about the process of getting rid of “stuff” no longer needed. Counting what my wife […]

Home Guru:  Advantages When Your Supplier is a Long-Term ‘Family Affair’

Home Guru: Advantages When Your Supplier is a Long-Term ‘Family Affair’

By Bill Primavera – Having long-term relationships with your home suppliers has its advantages. In effect, they become advisers you can trust, almost like members of the family. And when the business itself is an extended family, it’s especially nice. Take the example of Absolute Flooring of Yorktown that re-did my kitchen floor three years ago. […]

Home Guru: Faux, that Phony Technique that Adds Real Beauty

Home Guru: Faux, that Phony Technique that Adds Real Beauty

By Bill Primavera – A whole new world was opened to me years ago when the owners of a tasteful antiques shop in Brooklyn Heights invited me to their condo in one of the grand houses in that landmarked neighborhood. When I looked up at the ceiling in their living room, I found that I was […]

Bill Primavera

Home Guru: There’s Still a Place for the Home Library in the Digital Age

By Bill Primavera – In an age when the wealth of human knowledge and culture can be accessed through a tile-sized tablet, many people would assume that we no longer have a need for a home library. This does not necessarily indicate a decline in literacy. In fact, the members of Generation Y are the most […]

Home Guru: What a Delight to Listen to Our Neighbors Who Tweet

Home Guru: What a Delight to Listen to Our Neighbors Who Tweet

By Bill Primavera – Between a childhood in South Philadelphia and an early adulthood spent in Boston and Brooklyn Heights, I never had much exposure to birds or birdwatching — unless sharing the sidewalk with flocks of pigeons counts. But now, after decades of living in a leafy suburb, the birds of our region have become […]

Home Guru: That Time of Year to Think About Tax Tips for the Homeowner

Home Guru: That Time of Year to Think About Tax Tips for the Homeowner

By Bill Primavera – As winter draws to a close, we are reminded that tax time is just around the corner. Those of us who own our own homes are fortunate enough to have many tax deductions and advantageous strategies available to us. I have some solid advice below, but be prudent and check these out […]

Home Guru: Home Staging By a Professional or On Your Own

Home Guru: Home Staging By a Professional or On Your Own

By Bill Primavera – Sometimes I think it’s a good exercise for a realtor to look at the home search process more from the buyer’s point of view.  And from that perspective, choosing a home that is right for us can be more about art than science. Sure, we may start the search with a list […]

Home Guru: With Master Baths So Large, They Can Be So Much More

Home Guru: With Master Baths So Large, They Can Be So Much More

By Bill Primavera – A home stager recently pointed out to me that of all the staging offenses she had witnessed on a listing photograph was a bathroom shot showing a toilet with the lid and seat in the up position, highlighting the classic argument between male and female members of a household. I must confess […]

Home Guru:  ‘Zombie Homes’ and Their Effect on Owners and Communities

Home Guru: ‘Zombie Homes’ and Their Effect on Owners and Communities

By Bill Primavera – Last month, residents of Mount Vernon breathed a sigh of relief as a long-abandoned house in their city was finally torn down. The building had stood empty for four years, and was then damaged by fire two years ago. Finally, the high winds and snow accumulation from the recent winter storm […]

Home Guru: The Allure of Red However or Wherever Used

Home Guru: The Allure of Red However or Wherever Used

By Bill Primavera – It never occurred to me as a 16-year-old that I was making a strong statement. Given the first opportunity to decorate my own room, I chose a really bright red for the walls. My mother waited until I was in my thirties to finally tell me that she always knew I was […]

Home Guru: Watch Out for Gaps in Your Insurance Coverage

Home Guru: Watch Out for Gaps in Your Insurance Coverage

By Bill Primavera Now that we’re mostly dug out of the recent snowstorm, I find myself remembering a friend whose home was damaged due to freezing conditions. That difficult event was made worse for her because her agent had neglected to give her proper coverage, selling her a condominium policy when she actually lived in […]

Home Guru: The Home Guru’s 2016 Real Estate Forecast

Home Guru: The Home Guru’s 2016 Real Estate Forecast

By Bill Primavera – As we settle into 2016, it’s time for The Home Guru to report on the closing of the fourth quarter of the housing market in 2015 and take a look into his crystal ball and see how experts say it might behave in the months ahead. Just in are the results of […]

Home Guru: A Clutter of Information about Clutter

Home Guru: A Clutter of Information about Clutter

By Bill Primavera – It makes sense that we would be reminded at the beginning of the year, when we’re all fortified with New Year’s resolutions, to resolve to get around to decluttering. It seems that everywhere I look I’m finding helpful hints of how to do that. I have only occasionally dipped into the world of […]

Home Guru: The Top 10 List of New Year’s Resolutions for Your Home

Home Guru: The Top 10 List of New Year’s Resolutions for Your Home

By Bill Primavera  The National Association of Realtors has an advisory service called House Logic which dispenses all kinds of useful information. Very cleverly, it kicked off 2016 by issuing the top New Year’s resolutions for the home that normally would be associated with personal resolve.  Paraphrased, I share them here. Lose weight (cut energy […]

Home Guru: More Living with Less Space, Possible with Convertible Furniture

Home Guru: More Living with Less Space, Possible with Convertible Furniture

By Bill Primavera  In the early days of our marriage, my wife and I lived in a small New York City studio apartment, and we had to make the most of what space we had. Some of our neighbors opened up floor space by sleeping on Murphy beds that folded up vertically into the wall. […]

Home Guru: Be Careful, the Holidays are When Accidents Happen Most

Home Guru: Be Careful, the Holidays are When Accidents Happen Most

By Bill Primavera During the holiday season when there is more festive activity around the house, there is also more risk of accidents that can cause harm to ourselves and damage our homes than at any other time of year. I was reminded of this just the other evening when my wife Margaret and I […]

Home Guru: The Front Door Front and Center

Home Guru: The Front Door Front and Center

By Bill Primavera As I observe holiday wreaths dotting the front doors of homes, I am reminded that I’ve written about how important the condition of the front door is when it comes to the sale of a home. I thought about that recently when I opened a couple of doors for showings where the […]

Home Guru: Buying Holiday Gifts for the Smart Home

Home Guru: Buying Holiday Gifts for the Smart Home

By Bill Primavera – Come holiday time, my wife Margaret and I have always engaged in a practice I suspect many homeowners share: in addition to buying gifts for each other, we also buy gifts “for the home.” Over the years these have ranged from practical choices, such as new appliances, to objets d’art found during […]

Home Guru: Preparing for Winter, Whether Staying at Home or Going Away

Home Guru: Preparing for Winter, Whether Staying at Home or Going Away

By Bill Primavera – Every year, just as wintry weather arrives, I receive a call or email from the first supplier I ever used when moving to Westchester, Dave Goldberg of Dave Goldberg Plumbing and Heating, making sure that I remind readers to prepare for the frigid months ahead. This year, he expanded his email with […]

Home Guru: A Master Cabinet Maker Helps Define a Room

Home Guru: A Master Cabinet Maker Helps Define a Room

By Bill Primavera – Normally built-ins are utilized to transform dead zones into functional space, such as under stairs or windows, or between fireplaces and corners, but with our most recent project, there were a couple of other objectives to achieve besides organization, storage and display. Because my wife and I would be moving from a […]