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ROMANTIC LODGING IN BUCKS COUNTY

Steal away for a romantic escape at our more than forty charming bed and breakfasts. Situated on sprawling farms, off-country roads and small-town landscapes, Bucks County provides the perfect setting for time away with your loved one. From luxuriously upscale to charmingly rustic, escape the hustle and bustle in Bucks County:

Experience riverfront views and serene settings at 1740 House, a twenty-four room bed & breakfast nestled along the Delaware River. Located only six miles north of New Hope, spend the day lazing on your private balcony or head to New Hope to discover art galleries, quirky shops and breathtaking views. ROMANTIC LODGING1

Located on the banks of the Delaware River, the luxurious 1836 Bridgeton House combines French country charm with American simplicity. Situated in peaceful settings, their “Skip Lunch” breakfast can be served fireside or on their riverside terraces in warmer months.

Escape to the Golden Plough Inn located within the 18th-century-style shopping destination, Peddler’s Village. Stroll hand-in-hand down the winding pathways of this 42-acre village and enjoy the quaint scenery of six on-site restaurants and 70 shops including a spa, winery and old-fashioned candy store.

The Inn at Barley Sheaf Farm provides the ultimate romantic sanctuary with sixteen luxury suites in its historic manor house, cottage and barn. Indulge in luxury as you are surrounded by a 100-acre pasture and woodland views, swimming pool, miniature horses, flower gardens, pond and walking paths. Fun tip: You’ll be only steps away from where US Hot Air Balloon Team launches their hot air balloon rides.ROMANTIC LODGING2

Considered by many to be the most luxurious bed & breakfast in Bucks County, The Inn at Bowman’s Hill provides the ideal setting for a romantic retreat. Laze by the heated pool, sip a glass of wine on the vineyard terrace and soak up the beauty that surrounds on this AAA Four-Diamond five-acre manicured estate. This gated estate was recently named “Top 10 Most Romantic Inns in America” by ILoveInns.com.

Set just outside the lively streets of New Hope, Ash Mill Farm Bed & Breakfast is a ten-acre working sheep farm featuring five Manor House guest rooms and two separate guest cottages. Many of the rooms offer breathtaking views of the sheep pasture or opportunities to feed the sheep from your porch.

 

*Courtesy of www.vistbuckscounty.com
*Photo courtesy of 1836 Bridgeton House
*Photo of 1740 House, courtesy of Anthony Sinagoga Photography

 

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What You Need to Know about the Reduced FHA Minimum Credit Score

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Credit is of considerable concern when it comes to buying a home, but if you’re on the market for a new place in the next few months there may be some timely news that applies to you. If you haven’t heard about the changes to the Federal Housing Administration’s (FHA) credit score minimum, here’s some information on the recent reduction and how it may impact your home purchase.

Information On The FHA
Started in 1934, the FHA is the organization responsible for insuring the loans that are available to homebuyers in the United States. These loans are not provided directly by the FHA, rather the FHA serves as the insurer for the loans that are lent by financial institutions of the United States. While there are a number of guidelines that must be met by borrowers in order to ensure the FHA will back their loan, a lowered mortgage minimum credit score means that those with a less-impressive credit profile may have a better opportunity for home ownership. FHA2

The Minimum Credit Score Reduction
The strength or weakness of your credit history has a significant impact on whether or not you will qualify for a mortgage or even pre-approval, so for those whose credit has suffered the recent drop in the minimum will be good news. Previously, the FHA required a score of 640 so that a borrower could be approved for a mortgage, but the reduction by 60 points to a credit score of 580 means greater possibility for those who might fit into a lower credit category.

A Lower Mortgage Minimum and The MarketFHA3
With the opportunity for home ownership that will be opened up to potential buyers, there is a strong possibility that the market will experience a noticeable shift. Many millennials are poised to enter the real estate market this year, and with more people considering a house as a result of a reduction, there could be an increased demand in housing purchases. While the prices in rural areas have been dropping off, the housing in metropolitan areas may experience a sizeable upsurge.

With the reduction of the mortgage minimum credit score by the FHA, there are likely to be some shifts in the real estate market in the coming year that will affect demand and price. If you’re on the market for a new home and are interested in a purchase that will align with your finances, you may want to contact a mortgage broker for more information.

If you have any questions regarding mortgages, buying a home, or other advice about selling your home. Please feel free to call me directly at 215-519-1399.

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Hosting a Successful Open House

open house1From fixing up all the minor repairs to cleaning the house top-to-bottom, there are a lot of small details that go into organizing the perfect open house. However, in the rush to organize everything, there are a number of to-do’s that are easy to forget about. If you’re currently prepping your home and don’t want to miss the important stuff, here are some things you should contemplate before setting the date.

The Outside Look
The first thing potential homebuyers will notice when they arrive at your home is the outside, and that’s why it’s so important not to neglect it. Before organizing your open house, make sure the lawn is mowed, any unsightly hedges are trimmed and that your entrance area and flowerbeds are well maintained. Since potential homebuyers will see the outside before anything else, there’s no sense in losing them for having a disheveled lawn before they’ve even walked through the door.

Effectively Market the Eventopen house3
Many home sellers want to believe that their house will sell itself, but if no one knows about your open house or bothers to show up, there’s no chance of getting any offers. While your real estate agent should be featuring your home on their website, you may also want to hand out flyers to your neighbors and make a few posts on social media sites like Twitter and Facebook to get the word out. There are no assurances when it comes to drumming up interest, but spreading the word with as many people as possible will likely find a few interested parties.

Use The Five Sensesopen house4
It may not be the most common advice, but engaging potential buyers on a number of different levels can actually enhance the appeal of your home. Playing a little music can be a good way to make them feel comfortable, and you may want to do a little baking beforehand since the sense of smell can have a and at home like the scent of freshly baked treats and a little music.

There’s plenty of cleaning and organizing when it comes to an open house but it’s also important to look at the big picture when it comes to prepping for your home showing. If you’re nearly ready to put your home on the market, you may want to contact a local real estate professional for more information.

If you have any questions regarding home mortgages or other advice about selling your home, feel free to call me directly at 215-519-1399.

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Picnic Perfection for International Picnic Day in Bucks County

Grab your baskets and your blankets! International Picnic Day is June 18 and Bucks County has many scenic spots to nosh and soak up the sun. Pack a picnic and take your friends and family to one of Bucks County’s parks or other unique settings to enjoy the great outdoors! picnic1

With more than 7,500 acres of county and state park land, Bucks County’s parks provide some of the best places to picnic. The beautiful landscapes, woods, meadows and streams are the perfect setting for an outdoor feast.

Core Creek Park has pavilions and wooded picnic areas for you to enjoy. Pets are allowed so bring your furry friend!

Taking its name from Neshaminy Creek, Neshaminy State Park has picnic benches and grills at your disposal to create your perfect picnic.

Playwicki Park is a local favorite. The kids can play on the huge playground while you grill up a delicious meal for the family and enjoy it in one of their large pavilions.picnic2

Ringing Rocks Park is a both a breathtaking and unique place for picnic. After you finish eating, make sure to bring a hammer to the boulder field to hit the 10-foot-high rock piles that make a strange and fascinating ringing sound when struck.

Situated around the beautiful Lake Towhee, Lake Towhee Park has much to offer including a playground, hiking, boating, and fishing. After your activity filled day, enjoy a picnic in their spacious pavilion surrounded by large, shady trees.

For a romantic and special picnic, head over to Buckingham Valley Vineyards & Winery. After a self-guided tour and wine tasting, the owners welcome you to bring a picnic lunch to enjoy as you view the vineyard’s 40 stunning acres. When you’re finished, explore their exquisite sculptures created by Bucks County artists.picnic3

• If you’re looking for a place to picnic and get a history lesson, Pennsbury Manor delivers! The Manor, a reconstruction of William Penn’s home, is set on 43 beautiful acres along the Delaware River. Take their guided tour through the Manor House, furnished with 17th century period furniture and experience what life was like in colonial times. After your tour you are free to explore the estate. Stroll through the gardens, walk along the banks of the Delaware River or visit the stables to catch a glimpse of oxen or sheep grazing in the pastures. Take your picnic lunch to their covered picnic pavilion to round out your exciting and educational experience.

Take a trip back in time when you picnic at Washington Crossing Historic Park. Preserved on the park’s 500 acres is the site where George Washington crossed the Delaware River and turned the tide of the Revolutionary War. When your finished having lunch in one of the parks many picnic areas, tour the rest of the park for more American history, natural beauty, and family fun!picnic4

Is there a better way to picnic than surrounded by beautiful, blooming wildflowers? The folks at Bowman’s Hill Wildflower Preserve don’t think so! Take one of their daily Guided Wildflower Walks to see and learn about the gorgeous blooms. After your walk, picnic in the designated area located just past the entrance to the Preserve grounds, in the Captain James Moore Pavilion and adjacent grassy area. The Pavilion has electricity and picnic tables to make your experience perfect!

*Courtesy of www.visitbuckscounty.com
* Photo of family picnic courtesy of Anthony Sinagoga Photography
*Photo of Ringing Rocks Park courtesy of Justin DeRosa
*Photo courtesy of Pennsbury Manor
*Photo of Bowman’s Hill Wildflower Preserve courtesy of Sara Brace 

 

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Top 5 Ways to Cool Off This Summer in Bucks County

Beat the heat this summer with non-stop water fun in Bucks County! Whether it’s a thrilling joyride down the Delaware River or a relaxing day catching some fish, Bucks County has a variety of fun ways to get wet all summer long.cool off1

Spend the day enjoying some serious water adventures at Bucks County River Country. Tube or raft down the scenic Delaware River while catching some rays and spending quality time with family and friends. If you prefer a more action-packed adventure, try kayaking or canoeing for a day of non-stop thrilling fun.

Cool down at Delaware River Tubing! Conveniently located between New York and Philadelphia, people from all over can enjoy the fun on the Delaware River.  Spend the day tubing, kayaking, canoeing or rafting down the River and make sure to bring your appetite; every river rental includes a free BBQ meal from The Famous River Hot Dog Man.

With sixteen county and state parks, Bucks County offers a plethora of ways to get on the water with boating rentals available at many of our tranquil lakes. From full moon kayak tours at Core Creek Park to sailing along the wading waters of Peace Valley Park’s Lake Galena – relax and let Bucks County’s natural landscapes be your backdrop.cool off2

Let your kids embark on a water adventure of their own by floating around in Big Bird’s Rambling River at Sesame Place. With 1,000 feet of relaxing fun, this ride is perfect for children and adults of all ages. Drift through Sesame Island, past spraying geysers, rumbling waterfalls, and tropical palm trees.

Enjoy the afternoon relaxing with nature while fly fishing on the Delaware. With the Delaware River Fly Fishing Guide Service, you and your friends can discover the hot spots for fly fishing on a private guided tour. Spend the day cooling off, and of course…catching some fish!

 

*Courtesy of www.visitbuckscounty.com
*Photo courtesy of Delaware River Tubing
*Photo courtesy of Peace Valley Park

 

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3 Common Mortgage Fraud Scams to Avoid

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There are many ins and outs involved in securing a mortgage lender, and as a result there are many offers and options out there which are only around to take advantage of prospective homebuyers. If you’re on the lookout for a home and are trying to wade through all the details successfully, here are some things you may want to be aware of.

The Perfect Rental Deal
If you’ve ever rented an apartment in the past, it’s entirely possible that you’ve run into deals on Craigslist where a sizeable, stunning property is advertised at a very modest price. While scams like this are quite common when it comes to rentals, they also occur when scammers copy MLS listing and pretend to be an agent facilitating a real estate deal. There’s no sure way to avoid scams like these, but ensure you don’t hand over money or sign anything unless you’re 100% certain whom you’re dealing with.scam2

Lenders Who Push the Envelope
Reliable lenders will be upfront with you when explaining the details associated with your mortgage, so it’s important to be cautious if you end up dealing with someone who asks you to exaggerate or embellish your financial claims. The only way to make a solid investment is to be honest about your financial situation, and anyone trying to inflate your income and the price you can pay is only hoping to gain a piece of the profit for themselves.

Investment Speakers and Seminarsscam3
With so much information out there, many people look for courses that will make them aware of the basics of investing so that they can do some of the legwork on their own. Courses like these can be useful in many cases but if they happen to be sponsored by an organization and are charging high attendance fees, there’s a good chance they’re trying to endorse their own services and may not be providing the most accurate information. Instead of guessing for yourself, you may want to read up on the basics and follow up with a trusted lender for any additional questions.

There’s a lot involved in delving into the real estate market, and that’s why it’s important to watch out for the kinds of things that may not be serving your best interest. If you’re currently looking for a lender and are planning on buying a home soon, you may want to contact one of our mortgage professionals for more information.

If you have any questions regarding home mortgages or other advice about selling your home, feel free to call me directly at 215-519-1399.

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Family Camping in Bucks County

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Pack up the family and live the simple life at one of Bucks County’s picturesque campgrounds. Bucks County is home to six campgrounds that offer a wide range of amenities to guarantee that every member of your family leaves with no complaints!

Nestled in the hills and valleys of Ottsville, Beaver Valley Family Campground is five miles from Lake Nockamixon State Park and Bucks County River Country. Beaver Valley has lodging that ranges from wooded and open RV and tent sites to air-conditioned cabins. The campground has amenities that include a brand-new game room, full-sized pool and basketball courts. Stop in for the Corn and Hot Dog Roast or the delicious Peach Festival. Be sure to grab your discounted tickets to Sesame Place!camping1

Colonial Woods Family Camping Resort in Upper Black Eddy prides itself on having every important amenity. Take a dip in the beautiful heated swimming pool while the kids enjoy themselves in the spray pool. Be sure to take some personal time and check out the on-site spa. Every weekend at Colonial Woods is a theme weekend! Past themes include Pirate Party Weekend, Pig Roast & Hawaiian Luau and “Game of Life.”

Another campground gem located in Upper Black Eddy is Dogwood Haven Family Campground. With 55 wooded sites across the campground, you can spread out without feeling crowded by other campers. This site has fishing, golf and whitewater paddling. Kayak along a wonderful 3.8-mile-long piece of the Tohickon Creek from Ralph Stover State Park to Point Pleasant for views your family will never forget!

Family owned and operated for over 40 years by the Roeder Family, Little Red Barn Campground is located ½ mile from Nockamixon State Park in stunning Quakertown, PA. This campground is pet-friendly and has 152 sites, including 60 tent sites. Every campsite includes a picnic table and fireplace, perfect for family meals and late-night s’mores! Play pool or air-hockey in the game room, or get outdoors with a friendly game of horseshoes. Campers can also celebrate birthdays, anniversaries and other special events in Little Red Barn’s three-level pavilion. camping2

Quakertown is also home to Quakerwoods Campground, a family-oriented campground tucked away in Bucks County’s relaxing countryside. Scavenger Hunt Weekend, Birthday Weekend and Scarecrow Weekend are among the many popular theme weekends held throughout the summer. Trailer space is available for rent to give you all the comforts of home while enjoying the great outdoors! Discounted tickets to Sesame Place are also available.

Located on 64 Creekside acres in Bucks County, Tohickon Family Campground boasts more than 200 sites on an expansive family retreat. Spend a day fishing on the Tohickon Creek or swimming in the camp pool. Take a hayride, play bingo or make s’mores with goodies from the fully stocked camp store. Grandma’s Country Kitchen, a hall space for 50 people, can be rented for intimate family gatherings.

 

*Courtesy of www.visitbuckscounty.com
*Photo Courtesy of Little Red Barn Campground
*Photo Courtesy of Quakerwoods Campground 

 

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Smart Ways to Use Your Home’s Equity

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So you’ve been a homeowner for some time. You’ve been faithfully paying off your mortgage for years, and you have a fair bit of equity built up in your home, and that makes you proud. But now, you’re wondering what good equity is if you’re not using it.

How do you actually use home equity? And how do you leverage it to get a high return for low risk? Here are just a few options you may want to consider if you’re looking for something to do with your equity.

Use A Home Equity Loan (HELOC) to Pay Off High-Interest Debt
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If you have a certain amount of money invested in your home, you can borrow against that investment by taking out a home equity loan or a Home Equity Line of Credit (HELOC). A home equity loan is ideal for borrowing a large amount of money for a specific purpose, whereas a HELOC works much the same way a credit card does.  Use credit as needed to pay back what you owe, and if you have a lot of high-interest debts either could be a great way to pay off your creditors. It may seem like borrowing from Peter to pay Paul, but you actually save thousands of dollars in interest rates by paying off high-interest debt using a lower-interest HELOC or home equity loan.

Buy an Investment Property with a Home Equity Loan
If you’ve been looking to enter the real estate investment market but haven’t had the liquid funds for a deposit, leveraging your home equity in the form of a loan can get you into the landlord game quickly and easily. This is a smart move because while you are taking on EQUITY3more debt, you’re doing so in order to create a new income stream. Ideally, you’ll want to buy a duplex or a home with a granny suite so that you can maximize your investment by renting out more than one dwelling space.

Downsize to a Smaller House and Invest the Difference
Perhaps you’re living in a large house that has seen its value appreciate in recent years, and you’re looking to move in the near future. Selling your large home and moving into a smaller, less expensive home is a great way to simply turn your home’s equity into cash that you could invest.

Leveraging your home equity can be a smart move if it’s done with a larger goal and a solid strategy in mind. But when done irresponsibly, taking equity out of your home can have severe consequences. Talk to a mortgage professional today to learn more about smart options for leveraging your home’s equity.

If you have any questions regarding home mortgages or other advice about selling your home, feel free to call me directly at 215-519-1399.

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Bucks County Memorial Day Weekend Celebration of Fireworks, BBQ, and Parades

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Celebrate Memorial Day this weekend with the family at Sesame Place®! First enjoy an open air, traditional holiday BBQ in Big Bird’s Riverside Pavilion! After dinner don’t miss the fireworks show, set to Sesame Street music! Rock out with Elmo, Abby Cadabby, Cookie Monster and Count von Count, as their music fills the air and the sky is covered with colorful bursts of brilliance. Be sure to watch the sky painted red (and green and blue) from inside the park. This impressive display will certainly give you something to celebrate! Fireworks will begin at 9:00PM on Saturday and Sunday only. Entry into the park will be limited five minutes prior to the start of fireworks. The time is subject to change.

Date: May 28, 2016 – May 29, 2016 (May 30, BBQ Only)
Recurrence: Recurring daily
Event Location: Sesame Place®
100 Sesame Rd, Langhorne, PA 19047
Phone: 866-464-3566

BBQ Time: Sat. & Sun. 5PM and &7:30PM, Mon. 5PM

Fireworks: 9:00 PM to 9:10 PM Sat. & Sun. only

TULLYTOWN 125TH ANNIVERSARY MEMORIAL DAY CELEBRATIONmemorial day2

Memorial Day activities in the Borough have been announced. MEMORIAL SERVICES will be held at the monument at Fallsington Ave, Tullytown 9:00 am, proceeding to Services at Tullytown Cemetery. PARADE AT NOON from Levittown Parkway through Main Street Tullytown. Closing Ceremonies at Borough Hall Parking Lot, 500 Main Street, Tullytown. also enjoy DJB (Formerly Daisy Jug Band) performing after closing ceremonies in Borough Park Daisy Jug Band, WITZEND performing 6:00 pm that Evening in Borough Park.

Date: May 28, 2016
Event Location: Monument at Fallsington Ave
Monument at Fallsington Ave, Tullytown, PA

Time: 9AM Memorial Service, 12PM Parade

*Courtesy of www.visitbuckscounty.com

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Landscape Staging Tips and Preparing Your Yard for Spring

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When you are preparing to list your home for sale, you may take various steps to stage the interior so that it is appealing to a potential buyer. In addition to various steps you may take with staging the interior, you want to pay attention to your yard as well. During the spring months, many yards look fresh and vibrant, but they also need some extra care in order to boost curb appeal and make a great first impression on buyers.

Focus on Your Flower Beds
Whether you have one small flower bed or several sprawling areas of beds, you should ensure that all of the vegetation looks fresh and tidy. Trim bushes, and add bright spring annuals to brighten up the space. Pull weeds, and add a layer oflandscaping1 fresh mulch to your flower beds to give them a finished, well-maintained look.

Keep the Lawn Neat and Tidy
During the spring months, your lawn may revive from its dormant winter state, and you may find it growing rapidly. The green hue of a spring lawn can have a powerful benefit to curb appeal, but you want to keep the lawn trimmed and edged regularly to give it a manicured appearance. This can also minimize the impact of the look of weeds that may occasionally crop up throughout the spring months.

Pay Attention to Your Patio and Entrywaylandscaping3
While your vegetation will require some effort to maintain while you list your home, you do not want to overlook your patio and entryway. These are often visible from the street, and they will be viewed up-close when buyers tour your home. Ensure that the area is clean, and power wash it if necessary. Consider updating front door hardware and the entry mat if they appear worn or dated. You may also need to sweep these areas regularly while your home is listed for sale.

Staging your property can help you to sell your property more quickly and for top dollar, but your staging efforts should not be focused entirely on the interior of your home. Your landscaping also requires extra effort when you are getting your home ready to sell, and these tips can all help you to spruce up your landscaping with beautiful results. You may seek more customized information tailored to your property when you speak with a real estate agent about listing your home.

If you have any questions regarding home mortgages or other advice about selling your home, feel free to call me directly at 215-519-1399.

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