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      Blog :: 04-2015

      Going Through The Roof

      Things Are Looking Up

      "The sky's the limit if  you have a roof over your head." Sol Hurok.

      Architecture dazzles. Architect Frank Gehry knows, his metallic and light geometry in Cambridge, MA here pictured, draws you in and up instantly. It captures our hearts and minds. Design seduces buyers into bidding wars, captures in form the spirit of man and shelter.

      Vermont architecture varies dramatically, from urbanscape to quiet country lane. Roofs, the apogee of our homes, define the interpretation of form and visual appeal, not to mention purpose. Often overlooked as incidental, the roof is the backbone of a home, critical in preserving and protecting. Whether a simple gable sans skylight, a dormered cape, an ornate victorian or flat top rubber membrane, roofs are, second only to foundations, an essential architectural element in function and style.

      What kind of roofs have caught your eye and fancy? Do you prefer simplicity or complex lines and interaction? How important is light and elevation to you?

      Like us, roofs need to breathe. Adequately providing for soffit and peak ventilation can radically affect longevity of both the roofing and substrate. There's nothing as frustrating when you've found a great buyer, are under contract to close and the property inspector opens up the attic to find thick layers of mold covering the attic ceiling due to inadequate venilation and trapped moisture. Mold mediation companies can charge tens of thousands.

      This Maple Sweet Real Estate Mad River Valley listing at 146 Sugarhouse Lane features a half-hipped roof, sloped in four directions with post and beam accents. The hipped roof allows for more room upstairs; less knee wall space means high square footage and better maximization of vertical opportunities.

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

      It's the materials that count. From adobe out west, grass tops in England, synthetic slate shingles made from baby diapers, roofing elements define the shelter from the storm, our year round umbrellas. Cedar shakes are durable and gorgeous and can last for many decades depending on thickness, length, rating, installation skill and maintenance. Other shingles include ubiquitous ashphalt in standard and architectural form and composite shingles. While rare in Vermont, terra cotta spanish and other ceramic tiles hold immense appeal. With heavy snowfall's vertical line, sheet metal satisfies in corrugated and standing seam. Think green...Solar shingles anyone?

      The real deal, slate shingles can last 100+ years; so durable, they make the others look like rice paper. Just be sure to build a frame and truss system strong enough to support their weight or the whole show will come tumbling down. From dirt cheap to blindingly dear as the labor is dangerous, something I can attest to. I was up refinishing a roof of mine when the ladder gave out. Shotgun descent, broken humurous (thankfully no broken back or neck), titanium plate, surgery and seven screws. This is one job you don't want to DIY.

      Poetry of roofing. Open vs closed valleys, pitch and concealed fasteners. Flashing, skylights and gutters, snow guards, peaks and valleys. Arched, domed and skillion, sheathing, sod and solar. Thermal emittance, ice dams and R factor.

       

      "Tin Roof" by Scottish Poet Nii Ayikwei Parkes

      "Wild harmattan winds whip you but still you stay; they spit dust all over your gleam and twist your sharp cutting edges.

      The rains come zinging mud with their own tapping music. Yet you remain -my pride- my very own roof."

       

       

      Maple Sweet Real Estate adds value and insight to better inform your real estate decisions. Thank you so much for reading the Maple Sweet blog.

      To learn more about roofs, find a roofing contractor, buy land to build, buy or list your own home, call 800-525-7965 or email info@maplesweet.com

       

       

      Text 802-793-1515 or call toll free 800-525-7965 

      Set up Showings 

      List Your Property

      www.maplesweet.com

       
       Vermont Required Consumer Information Disclosure: please note Vermont real estate agencies represent Sellers directly or indirectly. Buyer representation can be gained for properties not already listed by Maple Sweet Real Estate. To better understand the merits of or arrange for buyer representation, please email or call for further details.

       

      Renting vs Buying in Vermont. When Does it Make Sense?

      When does it make sense to make the leap from renting to owning your own property? Forbes confirmed in March buying a home is now 38% cheaper than renting, with the gap closing as both mortgage interest rates and home prices rise. In many markets, buying beats renting until mortgage rates reach 10.6%. With rates currently hovering around 3.75%, still near historic lows, the advantage is clear.

      On average if you're planning to stay in place for a year and nine months, it's time to buy. Like any rule, there are so many exceptions. 

      Crucial is your ability to borrow. Even if the numbers make sense, you may not be in a position to quailfy for financing if your credit score has taken a hit or otherwise is lackluster. It pays to check your credit score and, if it's sub-par, take action to improve it and remove any dings or dispute any errors that are slowing you down, reduce your debt and pay your bills on time. fico.com lists three concrete steps, including pulling your free credit report. to take to figure out where you stand and what you can do to catapult.
       

      2nd are local rent levels vs the monthly cost of carrying a home including not just your mortage, but also taxes, insurance and maintenance which are easy to underestimate. Purchasing a home that fits your budge helps but equally as important is finding a home that is a value in your market. Comparing town assessed values to a likely purchase price can help as a barometer, but condition and stylistic appeal matter too. 

      3rd are your long term plans. Are your life, job and other circumstances stable? If you're anchored with a solid professional and social network and have roots in place, it can make more sense as you'll want to buy and hold for as long as possible to maximize the return on your investment. Often quoted is seven years before things start to look rosy, though market swings can skew that equation dramatically. The Wall Street Journal reports on an essential step in a successful life and realtor.org provides a field guide to buying vs renting.

      4th. Wouldn't it be wonderful to get that monkey off your back? Landlords can be overwhelming. Instead of having to wait to get those irksome issues taken care of, when you own you know it's worth keeping things up and you can execute promptly knowing it's your investment. Ever have a landlord crimp your style or nag you about conforming to a lease condition you wish you'd never signed or didn't read carefully enough? Set yourself free.

        

       

       Home ownership is, after all, part of the American dream. There's such a thrill in knowing it's your own castle and you've control over your own destiny. Landscaping, perennials, planting trees, masonry walls and stone gardens and other beautification become major pleasures, not to mention knowing that, if well cared for and improved over time, the chances are you'll end up getting back at last most of your equity if not all of it plus a handsome profit instead of all those lost rent payments that went up in smoke. 

       

      Maple Sweet Real Estate adds value and insight to better inform your real estate decisions.

       

      Text 802-793-1515 or call toll free 800-525-7965 

      Set up Showings 

      List Your Property

      www.maplesweet.com

       
       Vermont Required Consumer Information Disclosure: please note Vermont real estate agencies represent Sellers directly or indirectly. Buyer representation can be gained for properties not already listed by Maple Sweet Real Estate. To better understand the merits of or arrange for buyer representation, please email or call for further details.
       

       

       

       

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