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Blog :: 11-2020

Homes for Gathering at a Distance

Holiday gatherings pose new challenges this season, as we try to balance spending time with loved ones with not putting anyone’s health at risk.  Our Sotheby’s International Realty colleagues have compiled a list of glamorous homes where you can remain safely socially distant while enjoying company - from a spacious 11-acre estate in California to a luxury beachside home in the Balearic Islands.  We were inspired to look a little closer to home, and put forward our own recommendations for homes in Bedford, Concord and Lexington with options to gather more safely and maintain your social distance.

5 Childs Road in Lexington, a beautiful new construction, has a spacious sunroom leading to a private backyard with an oversized stone patio and a stone fireplace - perfect for the chilly winter evenings.  



539 Strawberry Hill in Concord features multiple sunrooms and patios for indoor/outdoor gatherings -  throw open the doors to let the fresh air in while enjoying some shelter from the elements.  








251-A Old Billerica Road, Bedford offers much to keep you and your guests entertained outdoors, with an outdoor basketball court, plenty of wooded trails and a custom treehouse! 








5 Pickman Drive, Unit 5 in Bedford has a sunroom with floor-to-ceiling windows and a pretty patio that can be accessed via glass doors from the family room, creating a pandemic-friendly gathering spot.  







For more aspirational homes from across the globe, read the latest blog from Sotheby’s International Realty.



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Celebrating Thanksgiving in 2020

Another holiday during the pandemic means another opportunity to find alternative ways to celebrate!  For many, this will mean a very different Thanksgiving for 2020.  CDC Guidelines advise against large, indoor gatherings - indeed, any gatherings with people outside of your household carry the risk of transmission.  However, with a bit of creativity, you can still enjoy the day and get to spend some quality time giving thanks with loved ones.

Virtual Dinner

Thank goodness for technology giving us virtual ways to see each other.  On Thanksgiving Day you can set up a video call with your friends or family - get in the kitchen together and prepare your meal, or set them up on a device and seat them virtually at your table. If you are not tech-savvy, don’t forget the power of a phone call to make someone feel connected and included.

Dinner Delivery

If you have family who live nearby, or friends and neighbors who you know will be alone, why not prepare their favorite elements of the traditional turkey dinner and drop it off at their house in advance?  Then you can arrange to eat “together” on the day.

Movie or Game Night

Family movie night or board games are a great way for people in your household to enjoy themselves. You can also extend this to people outside of your home - several movie streaming services, such as Netflix, offer a way to watch movies together even if you are in separate houses.  There are also apps that enable you to take part in games such as trivia or card games with other households via the internet.  

Get Outside

If the weather complies, a good walk is a great way to blow off the cobwebs and work up an appetite!  If you are walking with members of another household, remember to wear your masks and keep your distance.

Give Back

As well as giving thanks, the holidays are also a good time to give back.  Food pantries or banks are always grateful for donations of non-perishable items and toiletries -  contact them to find out what they are most in need of.  Or get together with the children and write thank you cards to essential workers that can be safely delivered before or after the holiday.  Another way to mark the holiday is to take part in a gratitude activity - gather people in your household together and share things you are grateful for.  Even in these tough times, it's possible to find reasons to feel thankful this year.



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    Be Our Guest - Homes with Gorgeous Guesthouses

    When we are once again ready to welcome guests, wouldn't it be nice to offer them their own space?  Sotheby's International Realty has sourced some amazing examples of homes with gorgeous guesthouses - and we have our own we want to share with you.  1 Lilac Lane in Hudson MA includes an amazing guest cottage from where your family or friends can enjoy the heated pool, sports courts, walking trails and the beautifully landscaped grounds.

    With its own kitchen, modern bathroom and comfortable bedroom, this cottage will make visitors feel right at home! Guests can step out onto one of two patio areas and enjoy poolside views or gather around the firepit.  There's also an outdoor shower for the ultimate summer convenience!

    The main house is an antique home (1817) with every amenity imaginable. Large chef's kitchen, oversized sunroom, 9 fireplaces and master bedroom suite are just some of the interior features the new owners can enjoy. Outside along with the pool, there's also a generous paddock, riding ring and an 8 stall barn, plus a further outbuilding perfect for a car enthusiast or as a studio. 

    1 Lilac Lane is offered at $1,695,000. Contact us to arrange your private viewing.

    For more homes offering high-end hospitality read the latest blog from Sotheby's International Realty, featuring homes from Cape Cod to Santa Fe.


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      Tips for First Time Sellers

      Selling Your Home in Greater BostonSelling a home can be a tricky process - there’s so much to think about during the process, all the while you’re handling the excitement and planning that comes with the moving process. We want to make sure you’re equipped with all the tools you need to successfully navigate the sale, so keep reading to pick up some tips. 

      Take Your Time Preparing

      Being fully ready to sell your home by the time it’s listed is absolutely essential if you want to have a good experience. Your home will sell more effectively if you’re totally committed to the selling process - you don’t want to have any doubts once your home is put on the market. Ask yourself why you’re selling as this will be useful information for your real estate agent. This is also a frequently asked question from buyers, so definitely have an answer prepared. 

      Don’t Skimp on Presentation

      You can’t underestimate the importance of presentation when it comes to selling a home. It has been proven that homes sell better when staged, especially when they have minimal furniture and a fresh coat of paint. Committing to this may mean having to live without some of your usual comforts during the showing period, but it’s a sacrifice that will pay off in the end. It also would be a good idea to hire a professional photographer to take pictures of your staged home - having high quality photos accessible online will make all the difference in a market that is increasingly virtual. 

      Price Your Home Appropriately 

      Pricing is a huge factor that contributes to how long your home will be on the market. To find out how much your home is worth, you’ll want to hire a professional appraiser - the extra money you spend on this will be well worth it. If your home isn’t priced competitively the first time, it could ultimately end up selling for less than it’s worth. You should also consult your agent about the area’s typical pricing and see how the appraisal price compares. 

      Understand the Cost of Selling

      Selling your home does mean an influx of cash, but you’ll also need to spend some money in order to get to that point. Factoring in these costs as part of your preparation is essential to making sure you really understand what you’re getting yourself into. Here are some costs to consider: 

      Agent Commission 

      Ask your real estate agent what their commission rate is and how long they anticipate your home will be on the market. Your agent’s commission is likely the highest fee you will pay throughout this process, but having an agent is instrumental in maintaining your sanity throughout this process.

      Repairs to your home

      In addition to some cosmetic tweaks that will help boost the appeal of your home, buyers will likely have some qualms with at least one aspect of your home. You should budget for some additional repairs, including anything deemed necessary by the home inspector. 


      Staging is an essential step in allowing the buyer to envision themselves in your home, which is what ultimately pushes them toward a purchase. Spending some extra money on staging, and even hiring a professional, can save you money in the long run by increasing the value of your home in the eyes of a buyer. 

      Moving Costs

      Once you’ve sold your home, you’ll naturally have to move out of it. It’s important that you account for these costs when you’re selling. Even if you’re not hiring a moving crew, you still will need to account for vehicle and equipment rental, gas, packing materials, shipping, cleaning costs, childcare and/or pet care, and moving insurance (if you choose to purchase it).

      If you are thinking about selling your home in the Greater Boston area, contact Barrett Sotheby's International Realty today or learn more about the services we provide to sellers.

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      Barrett Sotheby’s International Realty offers a world of advantages to buyers and sellers in Greater Boston and beyond including the most sophisticated and far-reaching marketing for every listing, the most advanced online presentation, and innovative technological resources.  Our Realtors® and staff provide an unmatched level of guidance and expertise. We invite you to experience the confidence that comes from working with one of the most reputable, most experienced, and most caring real estate partners in New England. Growing since 1977, we have offices in Acton, Bedford, Carlisle, Concord, Lexington, Lincoln and now Winchester.