As your Cape Cod real estate agent, I would be honored to help position your home for success in the marketplace. Let's connect.
Let's Look at Some Houses! I know all the Good Ones
Much of the traffic on the roads right now is happy vacationers tempted with the thought of having their own spot on the Cape. Homes that hit the market after Labor Day will have new ownership, new furniture and the beginning of new memories this time next year.
As your Cape Cod real estate agent, I would be honored to help position your home for success in the marketplace. Let's connect.
You might also like:
Let's Look at Some Houses! I know all the Good Ones
Turns out the President of the Massachusetts Maritime Academy is quite a writer. Rear Admiral Richard Gurnon is also the co-chair of the Cape Cod Canal Centennial Committee and in that role, he penned an essay about his memories of the Canal and his little boy.
The following essay first appeared in the Cape Cod Centennial special supplement of the Cape Cod Times and with full credit to them, I reprint it here today. If you've never stopped to explore the canal, preferring instead to speed over it on the bridges that whisk you home, take in the lovely prose of Rear Admiral Gurnon.
"Big Boat! Big Boat!"
By: Richard Gurnon
"Big boat! Big boat!"
Those words were the first sentence uttered by our toddler. We had moved to Buzzard's Bay in early spring of 1978, and our young son was instantly enamored with the ships that plied the Cape Cod Canal--just 200 yards from our home.
The throbbing, slow-speed diesels of the oil tankers with their red "bravo" flag flapping in the wind, reminding those in the know that they carried petroleum products; the higher-pitched whine of the tugs laboring to pull their barges to Boston; the giant car carriers, huge floating shoe boxes stuffed to the gunnels with Toyotas and Subarus; each ship had a distinctive frequency but their powerful marine engines rattled the drafty windows in our old Cape and alerted the boy that they were coming.
With his shouts of "Big boat!" we were off and running down the street to the banks of the canal, where he would wave frantically to the mate in the wheelhouse or on the bridge, hoping for a toot of the ship's whistle in reply. A lonely crewmember, lounging on the fantail talking in the scenery of Cape Cod from this unusually close vantage point, would wave back. I would read the homeports off the stern -- Panama City, Baton Rouge, Liberia-- names beyond both his comprehension and his horizon, as I explained that the sailors he saw were tens of thousands of miles from their home. "They probably have a boy just like you at home, and they must miss him very much."
Even when it was cold outside, the boy would want to wait, tucked snugly inside my warm parka, until the ship turned a bend in the canal and disappeared from his sight.
The countdown to a big birthday party is on. Beginning July 25th and ending on the 29th, Cape Codders and visitors alike will celebrate the engineering marvel that is the Cape Cod Canal.
The first version was built with private funds and spanned a width of 100 feet with a depth of 25 feet. However swift currents caused many ships to run aground. The federal government purchased the toll canal, and from 1935 until 1940, expanded it to 480 feet wide and 32 feet deep, which 6 million visitors traverse each year over the Sagamore and Bourne Bridges.
The canal was a game changer for the commercial shipping industry which suffered dozens of wrecks navigating the treacherous and uncharted shoals off the Chatham elbow of the Cape. Today it is a destination in itself with scenic overlooks on the banks of the canal and paved paths hosting bicyclists, baby carriages, joggers and couples walking hand in hand.
As we look forward to the centennial celebration this weekend, enjoy this video produced by the Centennial Committee.
To learn more about the festivities, click here.
You may also like:
Cape Cod Canal Blamed for Erosion of Sandwich Beaches
Cape Cod via Bike and Ferry Only
2014 Beckons Tourists from Around the World
It would seem a natural fit You take the beauty of Cape Cod as seen from the water and combine it with terrific Cape cuisine for a winning combo. But there is a surprising lack of dinner cruises available on Cape Cod.
Sure, our seas can be rough, and food is not what you turn to when the horizon is a moving target. That's what the gentle waters of Buzzards, Cape Cod and Lewis Bays are for. What's everybody waiting for?
Hats off to the Cape Cod Lobster Roll Cruise out of Sesuit Harbor in East Dennis, on Cape Cod Bay. Boats depart each day for lunch and dinner, and the menu is Cape Cod classic: Lobster dinner, prime rib or chicken ceasar salad. For private parties, a lengthy list of appetizers includes steamed clams, Barnstable little necks, tuna sashimi and more. Kids have pint-sized menu options too.
Sunset dinner cruises cost $42. per person for the food only. There is a cash bar. Or just enjoy the sunset without food for a reduced rate.
There are other cruise options throughout the Cape. They serve drinks and basic bar snacks, and one-- the Cape Cod Canal Cruise, provides live jazz music too.
This is too bad. Cape Cod, boating and food go hand in hand. I'd love to see more choices in the future.
Cape Cod Cruises
Chalker says the hydrangeas will pull through, but this year's bloom will be paltry. If you still see sticks growing from your bushy green leaves, simply cut the sticks off at the base. Barring another ferocious winter, all that thick growth filling in will host wonderful gigantic blue flowers next year at this time.
Who doesn't like butterflies? They have beautiful markings and they float so slowly through the air, they rarely startle us. Best yet, they don't bite or sting. Some people believe butterflies symbolize departed loved ones hovering around and sending us a sign they are near us.
There is a place just over the bridges where you can see native southeastern Massachusetts butterlies in all stages of development. It's the Butterfly House of Bournedale. Bring some money because you can purchase gifts there too.
Check out this video, thanks to our friends at Capecast at the Cape Cod Times.
So you've booked a week of summer vacation on Cape Cod with your BFFs but the only Cape you know is the one you saw as a child with your family.
Now that you're grown-up it's time to try something new, or to bring a new attitude to the familiar. With some great photos by Instagrammers, here is my List of Best Cape Cod Activities for 20-somethings.
Shining Sea Bike Trail, Falmouth, MA
Like the Cape Cod Rail Trail Bike Path further out on the Cape, the Shining Sea Trail covers a railroad line long abandoned. The New York, New Haven and Hartford Rail Line once delivered passengers from New York to Wood's Hole. Today, the 10.7 mile paved bike path takes you past a cranberry bog, shoreline vistas of beautiful Buzzard's Bay, marshes, an ocean beach with crazy head winds, and two villages where you can stop and get something to eat or buy a T-shirt.
There are several trail access points and bike rental shops along the path extending from North Falmouth to the Steamship Port Authority parking lot at Woods Hole. In fact, if you don't stop at the end of the Shining Sea Trail, you'll end up boarding the belly of a ferry that will take you to Martha's Vineyard-- a fun option for a day trip.
Pack a lunch or get off the trail and enjoy sidewalk dining in Falmouth, all without the inconvenience of finding a place for the car. Easy on, easy off. Don't forget to bring your camera.
The Beachcomber, Wellfleet, MA
The Beachcomber restaurant and nightclub on Cahoon's Hollow Beach in Wellfleet has been hosting dudes for longer than people have been called dudes.
Nestled in the dunes on the eastern shore of the Cape, The Beachcomber has food for both landlubbers and seafood lovers. Buffalo Wings, nachos and quesadillas may make you forget you're on the Cape so go for the Nauset Steamers, Eastham mussels or fish tacos for some coastal flavor. Cahoon's Hollow is a top destination for surfers. Bring binoculars and watch the fun.
Night time is club time at the Beachcomber and there's a busy season of performers. Check out the calendar. Important: Know your limit or your designated driver. Wellfleet Police are waiting for you on all points leaving The Beachcomber.
Whale Watch, Provincetown, MA
Cape Cod is as attractive to whales as it is to people, with hundreds of endangered right whales observed by scientists frollicking in Cape Cod Bay this winter alone.
Some whale watch companies guarantee a whale sighting on your paid trip, and why wouldn't they? In addition to the Rights, there are Finbacks, Minkes and Pilot whales hanging around. The boat captains know many of the whales by name to make the experience particularly personal. This is not the thing to do if you partied a little too hard the night before. Do your fellow passengers a favor and skip it if there's a chance of a bad ending. If you're OK with motion, bring some bonine and check it out. Most of the world never gets to see a whale. You can be one of the lucky ones.
The watches depart from MacMillan Pier in the heart of Provincetown. Shop around to get the boat and price you want.
Edward Gorey Museum
Edward St. John Gorey (1925-2000) was an American illustrator whose pen and ink drawings appeared in books and newspapers, and whose fanciful themes inspired sets and costumes on Broadway and beyond.
Gorey loved Cape Cod and in 1979 he purchased a former sea captain's home at 8 Strawberry Lane on the village green in historic Yarmouthport. That home was turned into a museum when Gorey died in 2000. The artist's original sketches and collections are housed in the museum which offers a unique opportunity into the mind and studio of this whimsical genius with a hint of the dark side.
This year the museum focuses on the 28 Books of Edward Gorey's Fantods Press with an exhibit entitled "F is for Fantods".
Believe it or not, drive-in movie theaters were commonplace when your parents grew up in the 1960s. Cape Cod's only drive-in is 57 years old this year and still going strong with the introduction of dolby sound.
The playground and snack bar are a trip back in time and they're popular with families waiting for darkness to descend so you can actually see the screen. Tickets are per person, not per car and if you arrive in a large vehicle like an SUV, pickup or mini-van, you'll be directed toward the back of the lot.
Bring bug spray because if it's a hot night you'll need to open your car windows and it can be brutal. You're not allowed to run the engine to have AC.
Skydiving in Chatham
Test your nerves with the ultimate thrill, skydiving over Cape Cod. Skydive Cape Cod in Chatham has been launching people from planes since 2007, much to the frustration of the neighbors who hear every word people yell on the way down. Every. Word.
Planes take off from the quaint Chatham Municipal Airport on George Ryder Road. You freefall, tandem with an instructor for 45 seconds, before the parachute is deployed and you drift for five to seven minutes more enjoying the awesome view. They'll sell you photos of yourself in mid-air too so you can bring proof to the office when you go back.
Provincetown After Dark
The U.S. Census Bureau calls Provincetown "The Gayest City in America", a mantle it wears proudly. By day it shares bustling Commercial Street with families with young children, European visitors, artists, fisherman and straights. At night, Provincetown has the most diverse nightlife outside of Hyannis.
There are terrific restaurants with sophistication that surprises you once you get past the shabby building in need of paint. Live theatre, cabaret, and tea dances round out the edgy options. Choose from leather-and-chains meetups underground to parties on the sand by the harbor. Provincetown is like no other place on earth. It's that wonderful.
Get there as the sun is going down and hit the beach for "golden hour" portraits and selfies. It's the most flattering light for the face and makes even a cellphone camera look professional.
Kayak Rentals on Swan Pond and River
Cape Cod has a ton of fresh-water and the lakes, ponds and rivers are perfect for boating. In Dennisport you can rent a one or two person kayak and paddle south on the Swan River to the ocean before turning around and heading north to Swan Pond.
Cape Cod Waterways is open from 8 am till 7:30 pm. The owner tells me an hour and a half is the perfect length of time to do the entire stretch. .
One word of caution; do not be tempted to kayak in the open ocean no matter how strong and skilled you are. Two college students thought they could stay close to shore in Harwich Port one afternoon a few years ago. A three-day search discovered one body floating three miles offshore. The second student was never found. The ocean is no place for a kayak. Stick to the ponds.
There are two wineries on Cape Cod that offer tours and tastings: Truro Vineyards on the outer Cape, and Cape Cod Winery in Falmouth. There is a third winery with tastings by appointment only, but First Crush in Harwich is for serious wine lovers and not for people looking for something different to do in an afternoon.
Cape Cod Winery is currently undergoing renovations at their new tasting venue on 4 Ox Bow Rd. in Falmouth Check their website for updates on the progress. They hope to reopen this summer.
Truro Vineyards is open 7 days a week at their beautiful site just east of Rt. 6. The 1830s farmhouse is pure New England-- no chance you landed in Napa or the Finger Lakes here. The owners have spent a small fortune on improving the facility and thus, the wines. It's definitely worth a stop and a tasting.
Deep Sea Fishing
Seafood is Cape Cod's most famous fare because it's all swimming just offshore. It doesn't get any fresher than this. Why not go out and meet it?
There are fishing charter companies from Buzzards Bay to Provincetown and all points in between -- too many to link to here.
How to choose? Price and quality of vessel of course, and ask if they guarantee you'll catch something. Many companies do. Rock Harbor in Orleans is mapped for you, but honestly, you can grab a charter from nearly every town on the Cape.
Shark, bluefin tuna, bluefish and the trophy striped bass are just some of the fishies awaiting you.
You'll probably pay for this stuff with a credit card. I found a site with good tips for young people when paying with plastic. It's creditcardinsider.com. I received no compensation for this article. I just thought these would be fun to do.
I have long predicted that fresh drinking water with be the valuable commodity in this century that petroleum was in the last. The supply is dwindling all over the world.
The problem in the southwest and western U.S. is much worse than in the northeast, however, this infographic by the California Association of Realtors can help us all see where our water goes.
Check out water use in a typical three-bedroom single family home. In California, that home uses 174,000 gallons per year, the majority going to a surprising purpose.
Small changes in habit can bring big rewards down the road. Here is a list of residential water conservation tips from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
You may also like:
Eastham Homeowners under Pressure from Declining Water Quality
Harwich Conservation Trust Received Historic Canal
As oceanfront living becomes accessible only to the wealthy, a funky little neighborhood in Harwich remains attractive to the masses.
The "Campgrounds", formally carved out at the turn of the last century as the Ocean Grove Campgrounds, brought people to the shores of Nantucket Sound for a series of summertime religious revival meetings in the early 20th century. In the early years, believers camped out in tents however rainy weather no doubt prompted the construction of wooden platforms for the tents. These eventually sprouted dozens of tiny stick-style cottages of 200 to 500 square feet which remain today.
100 years later, the original architectural lines are still visible within second stories and small additions, but Campgrounds cottages attract people who don't mind crowding in with those they love. Conversations can be heard across three or four houses, so what happens at the Campgrounds, stays at the Campgrounds, as the familiar sales pitch goes.
The Memorial Day holiday weekend recently brought returning families together for an annual pot-luck picnic. A very young child, perhaps no older than 7, circled the block on his pint-sized motorized car with another very young friend who pushed himself along on a scooter. As the children disappeared from one set of eyes on a porch, they were picked up by another next door, and so on and so on.
Retirees strolled to the homes of other retirees and they caught up on news about grandchildren while planting flowers and laying fragrant cedar mulch . Teenagers walked the streets home from the beach in nothing more than a bathing suit. No shoes, no shirts-- no problem at the Campgrounds!
That is the Harwich Ocean Grove Campgrounds, a special place so close to the sea. There are currently three homes for sale in the neighborhood, one of them can be seen here.
And for a "commute" to the beach from that home, enjoy the walk below.
It's been four years in the making but google's self-driving car-- with no accelerator, brake, ignition or steering wheel is getting closer to America's open roads than ever before.
Google is building a fleet of 100 of the vehicles, which resemble a Mercedes-Benz' Smart more than any other vehicle. It's fully electric, travels 100 miles on a single charge, and is controlled by a cellphone app.
The company faces many years of regulatory controls long after it works out the bugs by using the cars at it's Seattle-based campus. The company reports there hasn't been a single accident on test runs in California, which is one of only three states, -- Florida and Nevada are the others, to allow experimental vehicles like this on their roads.
Google cars travel no faster than 25 miles per hour and are designed for urban and suburban use, not super-highways. Florida retirement communities will likely buy fleets for their quiet communities next.
Designers envision a fleet of the driverless cars in Manhattan, where gasoline powered taxi cabs operate for $4. per mile. Google says a driverless taxi can get the job done for 50 cents per mile and with virtually no wait time, no pollution and no swearing. Can you imagine never having to raise your arm to hail a cab in Manhattan again?
I would love to see these little cuties all over Cape Cod. Visitors unfamiliar with our roads could leave the driving to google while fully enjoying the beautiful scenery outside the window. Lost visitors wouldn't clog traffic behind them. No more mistaking the accelerator for the brake and ending up inside a house or convenience store. You could nestle two or three of these cars in one SUV spot in our limited space in the villages or beaches. How about 40 of these in the same parking lot that currently accommodates 25 or 30 conventional vehicles?
In the future, we might see these awaiting passengers at the Transportation Center in Hyannis. Visitors who take the Cape Flyer Train service from South Station in Boston must explore Cape Cod on their feet, their bicycles or our anemic public transportation. They could summon a quiet little google car, dictate Cape Cod National Seashore into their smart phone and away they go.
Sure there will be computer glitches which have the potential to cause a crash, but at 25 miles per hour and a front-end comprised mostly of foam, damage to anything including pedestrians and bicyclists will be minimal. It's about time.
Acknowledging the governmental red tape and 100 years of habits among the motoring public, Google co-founder Sergey Brin told the New York Times self-driving cars will get here. “Self-driving cars have the potential to drive in trains much closer together and, in theory, in the future at much higher speeds.
“There is nothing to say that once you demonstrate the safety, why can’t you go 100 miles per hour?” Bring it on.
Want to take a "spin" in a google car? Enjoy the ride below.
As hope grows for a third bridge to ease traffic congestion coming and going from Cape Cod, Linear Air has begun an executive shuttle service between Boston and Chatham.
According to the Cape Cod Chronicle, the company makes 50-minute runs from Hanscom Field in Bedford, Mass. to the Chatham air strip Fridays at 4:45 pm with return flights Sundays at 2:00 pm from Chatham. The speedy service cuts the commute from two hours with no traffic, and four hours or more during peak traffic times. Convenience comes with a steep price however, tickets cost $1,115 for a round-trip fare.
Neighbors needn't worry about the Chatham airport becoming as busy as Provincetown, or the Hamptons in New York. The runways in Chatham handle planes that accommodate up to eight passengers only and officials doubt there will be a huge demand for the pricey transportation option.
You may also like:
Cape Cod via Bike and Ferry Only
The "Indie, Low-Tech, Slow Travel Way" to See Cape Cod
If you're coming to the Cape this summer and your rental cottage has no internet connection, here are the free hot-spots in Harwich, Chatham and Orleans.
Happy surfing on Cape Cod, in all ways.
Harwich Hot Spots
Chatham Hot Spots
Orleans Hot Spots
You might also like:
Grocery Alternatives Growing on Cape Cod
Interactive Map of Beaches Helps you Pick Your Place on the Cape
Many travelers say the vacation begins with the planning from home. I recall the joy of selecting a Cape Cod rental for my own family each year. The scent of the sea practically filled my kitchen where I sat at my little desk browsing cottages by computer late at night.
Planning a budget for housing and activities is fun. Adding a line for gasoline, not so much.
A website by the Petroleum Institute makes the topic of gasoline a little more interesting, if not enjoyable. Did you know for example, that the average amount of state taxes and fees added to the cost of a gallon of gas in the U.S. is 31.49 Cents?
Of the six New England States, three states charge higher than the national average in taxes and fees, and three charge less. They are, per gallon:
Below National Average
For some perspective, gasoline taxes and fees levied in New Hampshire aren't even close to the average; 19.63 cents per gallon versus the average 31.49 cents. And southern states, with the exception of Texas, charge far below the average too.
Click this interactive map to tour the whole country via state and local gas taxes. You never knew gasoline could be so, well, interesting. Or maybe not.
You may also like:
The Indie, Low-Tech, Slow Way to See Cape Cod
Passenger Rail Service Returns to Cape Cod
I walked the dogs at Chapin Beach today, having traded my high heels for a pair of flip flops in the parking lot after showing a super sweet condo at nearby Bay Green in Dennis.
In true fashion, a portion of the road leading to this remote beach on Cape Cod Bay had been washed away by the winter storms, but rebuilt again. The beach is too much of a treasure to let annual storms stand in the way of enjoying it for the rest of the year.
Between this beach and neighboring Sesuit Harbor to the west, scientists and observers sighted more than 100 rare right whales over the past several months. With only 500 known to exist in all the world, it's astonishing that more than 100 rights were regularly seen swimming in the Bay where zooplankton near the surface provided a whale's version of McDonalds.
According to the blog Cape Cod Bay Watch, the endangered right whale has suffered decades of decline due to environmental factors, but the biggest threat to these gentle giants now is propeller strikes and net entanglements. It's illegal to come within 500 feet of a whale, but somebody needs to tell the whales. They continue to float up under vessels and get hit. An injured whale was spotted in Cape Cod Bay last month.
Cape Cod was ground zero for rare whales this spring. An even rarer bowhead whale was sighted frollicking with the herd of right whales in April. Bowheads are usually spotted in Alaska so this one was way off course.
Anyone who sees a right whale is asked to report it to authorities. A screen grab of a government map shows 2014 was rush hour for right whales. For the full interactive version, click here.
And keep your eyes out for the whales offshore all around Cape Cod. Peak season has passed but a few stragglers may wish to enjoy the summer season with the rest of us.
Property taxes on Cape Cod currently range from a high of $14.57 per thousand dollars of assessed value in Sandwich, to a low of $5.08 in Chatham. The rate in Chatham is among the lowest in Massachusetts. Only Chilmark, Hancock, Edgartown, Nantucket, Alford, and Aquinnah have a lower rate.
The median tax rate on Cape Cod is $8.18 -- the Brewster rate.
It is easy to calculate a property tax bill if you know the assessed value of a home, which can be found online in the various town websites.
Divide the assessed value by 1000. For example, a home assessed at $389,000 would be 389. Then multiply by the tax rate. For Brewster, that would be 389 x 8.17 = 3,182.02. The annual tax bill for that property in Brewster is $3,182.02.
To illustrate how much a tax rate can matter, take the same property in high-tax Sandwich and the tax bill on a $389,000 home is $5,667.73 . In Chatham, it's $1,976.12. Big difference which adds up over time. In ten years with hypothetically no increase in the rate, the Sandwich homeowner pays out $56,677,30 while the Chatham homeowner pays $19,761.20. The difference is enough to buy a car.
To be sure, property tax does not tell the entire story about home costs. In Chatham the median price of a home is now $525,000, according to the Massachusetts Property Information Network. In Sandwich the median price is $289,500. Therefore, the median tax bill in Chatham is $2,667.00 and the median tax bill in Sandwich is $4,218.01.
With the cost of schools, fire and police protection and road repair etc. costing essentially the same from town to town, a municipality with lower property values must offset the difference with a higher tax rate, thus the wide discrepancy.
Lastly, while the cost of your home does not change, the cost of your property tax almost always rises each year. As you shop for a home, ask your realtor about the property tax rate. Unlike the mortgage payment, the tax bill will increase over the course of homeownership.
As the housing industry continues it's comeback from the Great Recession, some homes on the market are receiving mulitple offers. Buyers often say they don't want to "get into a bidding war" and simply move on to something else, but for those who go for it, the California Association of Realtors created this engaging infographic to show how home sellers responded to competing offers in their state last year.
Those with chronic allergies and asthma already know that air quality on Cape Cod is not so great. Now a new report by the American Lung Association confirms it. In "State of the Air", Cape Cod gets an "F" .
That is equivalent to the air quality in Manhattan, with it's 8 million residents, and hundreds of thousands of cabs, cars and buses traversing the island each day and night.
The yellow haze you sometimes see at the beach at the end of a hot summer day is less the "lazy, hazy days of summer" and more a layer of air pollution brought in from factories in the midwest and pushed back by the ocean over the Cape. In fact, nearly all of Massachusetts gets a "C" or worse. Only Berkshire County in the western part of the state gets a "B". No county in Massachusetts earns an "A".
The data suggests that an average of 10 days per year are code "orange" indicating the air is unhealthy for "sensitive individuals"; the very young, those older than 65 and those with chronic lung conditions and heart disease. On these days, scientists recommend we limit our time outdoors, even if that time includes exercise.
Massachusetts lawmakers have pressed the federal government for stricter emissions standards in the midwest where much of the pollution is thought to originate. On a more individual level the American Lung Association advises everyone to drive less, use less electricity, and to not burn wood or trash.
Roofs, shingles, shutters and more. They're among the most expensive items on or in your home and you certainly want them to last. Here is the lifespan of some of the priciest elements of your home.
Rising sea levels and fiercer storms are costing the U.S. 80,000 acres of wetlands per year, according to a study by the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies.
Wetlands are vital for improving drinking water by filtering and detoxifying runoff. They also absorb storm water, provide a baffle for tidal flooding and provide habitat for birds, fish and other marine life.
Along with coral reefs and rainforests, coastal wetlands are among the
most productive ecosystems on earth.
While wetlands on Atlantic coast from Maine to Florida, including Cape Cod, are threatened by coastal development, the Gulf of Mexico has seen the greatest decrease in wetlands due to frequent and severe hurricanes.
A sea level rise of just one foot would have enormous impact on wetlands and shoreland development on Cape Cod, according to the U.S. Government. A new interactive map using data from the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, The U.S. Geological Survey and the U.S. Census, illustrates the impact of climate change in the decades to come.
You might also like:
Interactive Map Shows Advance of Cape Cod Flood Zones
Young adults born between 1980 and 1995 are fully entrenched in the acquisition phase of life, comprising the largest segment of homebuyers in the U.S. at 31 percent. At the same time Generation Y is also the smallest segment of home sellers, at 12 percent.
Data compiled by the National Association of Realtors reveals the "desire to own a home" is the most compelling reason Gen-Yers are jumping into the real estate market, with the majority of them planning to hold their home for 10 years.
Young adults are choosing urban areas over suburban or rural regions of the country, city the quality of neighborhood and the cost of commuting to work as the primary reason for selecting a location.
At the same time, student debt presents a challenge for Generation Y to enter the real estate market. 20 percent of those polled cited difficulty in saving for a down payment, and 56 percent stated student debt delayed socking money away for a home purchase.
87 percent of respondents believe that owning a home is a good investment, according to the NAR.
You might also like:
Who Pays when a Meteor Falls on Your House?
Cost-Value Ratio Breaks Six-Year Slump
Sales of single-family homes on Cape Cod decreased for the first quarter of the year, as a tight supply of homes for sale continued, according to the Massachusetts Property Information Network.
A total of 344 homes changed hands between January 1st and March 31st of this year, compared to 372 during the same period a year ago. That's a drop of 7.5 percent.
With fewer homes for sale, eager buyers pushed prices up by 1.6 percent. The median cost of a home on the Cape is now $310,000. Last year at this time it was $305,000.
To download the full report with sales by price point, sales price to list price ratio and other data, click below:
Barnstable County 1st Quarter Market Watch 2014
A bowhead whale with a skull so large it can cut through arctic ice, was spotted in Cape Cod bay this week.
Researchers with the Provincetown Center for Coastal Studies saw the whale as they continued their observations of an enormous pod of rare right whales from the air.
Cape Cod Bay is becoming a global whale epicenter. Of the 500 right whales known to exist in the world, scientists counted 90 in the western portion of Cape Cod Bay near the Canal this month.
The discovery of the bowhead whale is only the second time in history the giant mammal has been seen this far south.
The bowhead grows to 40 feet in length and weighs 200,000 pounds and was also spotted off Orleans in open ocean two years ago. Bowheads normally cruise Alaskan waters. Scientists are at a loss to explain why the bowhead whale traveled this far south.
Update: April 23, 2014
Scientists confirm the bowhead whale was seen swimming with a herd of right whales in Cape Cod Bay again April 19th. Scars on its head indicate it is the same whale as the one spotted on April 9th and once before in 2012 off Orleans, according to the Provincetown Center for Coastal Studies.
When I gave my Syracuse, NY kitchen a facelift in 1995 I turned to a marine supply catalogue to get the nickel cabinet hardware I envisioned for my historic 1926 Tudor Revival. Shiny brass was still the norm in kitchens and bathrooms back then, but I wanted something different, even if I had to be super creative about sourcing it in the days before online shopping.
Now, nearly 20 years later I have had my fill of nickel, stainless, and chrome. While shopping at Homegoods in Falmouth, Mass on Cape Cod recently, I saw a display of antiqued brass table lamps and I fell in love. Not since the 1970s have we seen burnished brass. It's time to give this overdue classic a modern twist and bring it into our homes.
Cape Codders continue to clean up after Nature's parting shot two weeks ago-- a winter storm that made up for paltry snowfall with ferocious and damaging winds.
The most notable casualty was the collapse of the historic John and Benjamin Mallowes house, a 200 year old home at 3 Main St. in Chatham's Old Village district and listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Carpenters had removed many of the historical elements for duplication and exposed the back of the home for construction of an addition when the storm blew through and knocked the house 6 inches off its foundation.
The Cape Cod Commission had been monitoring progress of the renovation to make certain historic guidelines were followed. It had taken three years of approvals to begin the work. The Commission has approved repair of the home which was reduced to a pile of lumber in the storm.
The Old Chatham Village District is a 95 acre neighborhood of 205 homes near the famed Chatham Lighthouse. The last time a home under renovation on Cape Cod came down in a storm was in the 1990s, according to Cape Cod Commission historic preservation specialist Sarah Korjeff. That home was ultimately reproduced.
You may also like:
Harwich Conservation Trust Receives Canal
Tips for Renovating an Antique Cape Cod Home
Homes on Streets Names for Trees Command Higher Selling Price
Any yard on Cape Cod without the benefit of irrigation, fertilizer and herbicide, is referred to as a "Cape Cod Yard".
It's a yard where nature calls the shots and designs the landscape. There's a little grass, but equal parts pine needles, exposed sand and, if you're lucky, a bed of moss.
A primitive plant, moss has no vascular system, flower, seeds or roots. But the effect of a carpet of fluffy green can be spectacular.
There is no dormant season for moss. It stops growing during a dry spell but it will grow year round, even at less than 32 degrees.
There are more than 12,000 species of moss and two types-- acrocarpous and pleuropous.
The typical homeowner spends mightily to eliminate moss and weeds from his lawn, however there are other gardeners spending a small fortune to have a lawn of only moss. Installations can cost as much as $75,000 for 2,000 square feet of property, according to Annie Martin, a moss grower and expert in Brevard, North Carolina.
Moss growers supply the product by the square foot, and while you might be tempted to take home a piece of moss you find in the woods, there is growing backlash from people who say the woods are to be left the way they are. Once you have some moss of your own, you can take a spatula and run it beneath the plant to grab a thin layer of soil, break apart the moss and replant in a new spot. Eventually the plants will grow together.
To find out more about moss and how to grow and propagate it, go to MossandStoneGardens.com.
You might also like:
Homeowners Sought to Share Patch of Yard for "Turtle Gardens"
Organic Lawn Care