• A compilation of timely information regarding matters of interest to homeowners, buyers and sellers of real estate in Dobbs Ferry, the Rivertowns and the Westchester County, NY area in general.

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Haunted Houses in the Hudson Valley

Around this time of year I always wonder if my house might be haunted. Perhaps it’s the upcoming Halloween celebration that has some of my more imaginative neighbors decorating their yards with all sorts of spooky surprises, just waiting to jump out at me, but more than likely it’s the change in seasons. As it gets colder, I hear all sorts of new noises in the house. As the wood contracts, in the suddenly cold temperatures, it creaks and it groans at odd hours. The winds pick up and there are new whistling sounds…..or could it be voices? Sometimes I wonder. And there are always footsteps running across the attic floor, late every night. I believe it’s a squirrel. I hope. There has been at least one well documented haunted house in the Lower Hudson Valley http://athomeinnyack.wordpress.com/2010/10/29/nyacks-legally-haunted-house/ There is no reason why there can’t be another. It does however raise all sorts of concerns as to whether you should publicly mention that you think your house is haunted. It’s probably not a beneficial feature. If you have any questions whatsoever, especially with October 31 just around the corner, the enclosed article from stylelist.com might be just the answer: http://www.stylelist.com/2011/10/27/theresa-caputo-long-island-medium_n_1035743.html

Local Halloween events from Rivertownsguide.com:
http://www.rivertownsguide.com

Dobbs Ferry Halloween and Pet Parade October 31


This year Dobbs Ferry is sponsoring a Pet Parade in conjunction with their annual Halloween Trick or Treat Parade on Main Street. The pet portion of the parade starts at the corner of Chestnut Street and Main Street at 5 PM. The Trick or Treat Parade starts at 4 PM. You can find an application for your pet here:
http://downtowndobbs.wufoo.com/forms/2011-dobbs-furry-halloween-pet-parade-registration/

10/31/11 Special Update From The Village Of Dobbs Ferry:
http://us1.campaign-archive2.com/?u=647dfe1db1e2a33d8dd7eece5&id=8ed9139889&e=fb51e758c6

Top 5 Remodel Projects For The Highest ROI


To almost no ones surprise, the top two out of five remodeling projects which tend to bring the greatest ROI (return on investment) remain your kitchen and your baths. It is almost a necessity in todays real estate market to have an updated kitchen and bath, hopefully in the last 10 years, but preferably in the last 5 years. While many homeowners attempt to add some individuality to these two areas, the safest approach is to try to remain as neutral as possible, especially if a resale of the property is contemplated in the near future. Left to their own devices, many buyers will overestimate the actual amount of money it will take to change your version of perfection to suit their own tastes immediately, especially if they add in the price of luxury appliances for their dream rooms and then subtract that amount from their purchase offer. The safer alternative is to have a neutral kitchen and bath that the prospective buyer may not actually be in love with, but can see themselves living with for a while, until they get around to their own remodel.
The top 5 projects are:

1 The Kitchen

2. The Bath(s)

3.The Deck

4. The Siding

5. The Windows.

More at: http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/la/renovating/5-remodeling-projects-with-highest-roi-angies-list-magazine-157992

Also see: https://dobbsferry-rivertowns.com/2011/09/18/custom-doors-for-ikea-kitchen-cabinets/

https://dobbsferry-rivertowns.com/2011/08/25/easy-concrete-countertops/

https://dobbsferry-rivertowns.com/2011/08/14/new-architectural-digest-amazing-kitchens-design-app/

51 Houses For Sale In Dobbs Ferry

1 Summit Terrace, Dobbs Ferry $709,000

Ranging from a 1 bedroom condominium for $279,000 with 1102 sq.ft. and taxes of $12,807 to a 5 bedroom English Tudor Colonial for $2,860,000 with 6000 sq.ft. and taxes of $78,017, there is quite a breadth of opportunity, at virtually every price point with interest rates hovering around 4%.
http://www.randrealty.com/agent/652/Scott-Rosasco/Search/1705246/Dobbs-Ferry/

Dobbs Ferry Walgreens Site Plan Approved


The Dobbs Ferry Planning Board, by a 3-1-1 vote, approved the site plan for the proposed Walgreens to be located in the Gateway zone on Ashford Avenue during this past Thursdays meeting. During the public hearing portion of this application the board heard from residents who had concerns about traffic patterns that would be created or exacerbated due to the results of this proposal. One resident noted that all traffic leaving the site and wishing to head back east towards Ardsley will be required to drive thru local residential streets, such as Maple Street, Storm Street or Washington Avenue as opposed to using the main arterial road of Ashford Avenue. This is because no left turns will be allowed on to Ashford or Broadway from the site and thus there is no other way for vehicular traffic to travel east on Ashford. The planning board, rather than doing any planning, chose to ignore this unique opportunity to correct, what the board noted to be an existing problem and instead simply approved a project which, according to even the projects own traffic engineers, will cause an increase in traffic at that intersection to the extent of 25 cars per hour, at its peak.
Three more village boards will need to weigh in on this application in order for it to move forward. The Zoning Board, The Architectural Review Board and probably most importantly, The Board of Trustees. The Zoning Board meets the 2nd Wednesday of each month, the Architectural Review Board meets the 2nd and 4th Monday of each month and the Board of Trustees meets the 2nd and 4th Tuesday of each month.

7th Annual Croton Aqueduct “AQUEFEST” This Weekend


A trail-long celebration of the Old Croton Aqueduct hosted by The Friends of the Old Croton Aqueduct.
Saturday, Oct. 15th: Yonkers, Sleepy Hollow, Ossining
Sunday Oct. 16th: Hastings, Dobbs Ferry, Irvington
SPECIAL GUEST! 3-time Grammy Award Winner, Tom Chapin, performs at The Keeper’s House at 15 Walnut Street in Dobbs Ferry on Sunday, Oct. 16 1pm-2pm. Other highlights include: Bash The Trash in Yonkers, Annie & the Natural Wonder Band in Hastings, Solar Punch in Sleepy Hollow, The Fair Haired Tinkers in Irvington, Aqueduct Weir Tours in Ossining and The Rivertowns Roll—a 25-mile group bicycle ride or 12-mile family ride along the OCA. For all AQUEFEST! locations and full program visit . www.aqueduct.org/

NYS STAR Savings Amounts and Income Limits


The New York State School Tax Relief Program (STAR) provides homeowners with two types of partial exemptions from school property taxes. Almost all homeowners qualify for the first type, Basic STAR, savings if they apply for it.
For 2011, income for Basic STAR purposes is based on the 2009 tax year, and is the combined income of:

  • all owners who reside at the property, and
  • any owner’s spouse who resides at the property.

Income is defined as federal “adjusted gross income” minus the “taxable amount” of total distributions from individual retirement accounts or individual retirement annuities (both of which are commonly known as “IRA’s”). For specific line references on your 2009 federal or state income tax returns, see page 2 of the STAR application.

If your assessor notifies you that you’re ineligible for the Basic STAR exemption:

  • If you agree that you’re ineligible, you don’t need to do anything. However, if your income drops below the limit in the future, you’ll need to re-apply for the exemption.
  • If your household income is below $500,000 and you believe that you’re eligible for the exemption, contact your assessor. The assessor may advise you to file a formal assessment grievance.

If you receive a notice from your assessor requesting more information:

  • Provide the assessor with your 2009 federal and state income tax returns.
  • If you don’t file a tax return, you’ll need to provide the assessor with all of your 2009 income statements (1099 statements, W-2 forms, etc.).

If you don’t receive a notice from your assessor

  • There’s no need to do anything – you’ll continue to receive the Basic STAR exemption.

For more information on the exact STAR Savings Amount, categorized by school district, see:

http://www.retiredassessor.com/STARSavings.html

 

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