Thomas Murphy - Pine Shores Real Estate



Posted by Thomas Murphy on 11/29/2015

They say it's a silent killer. Odorless, colorless, toxic fumes with symptoms similar to those of having the flu. It can kill you and your loved ones without you even knowing its there. Are you safeguarding your home against this deadly threat? Step one is knowing where the threat comes from. The United States Environmental Protection Agency states carbon monoxide can come from "unvented kerosene and gas space heaters; leaking chimneys and furnaces; back-drafting from furnaces, gas water heaters, wood stoves, and fireplaces; gas stoves; generators and other gasoline powered equipment; automobile exhaust from attached garages; and tobacco smoke." (http://www.epa.gov/iaq/co.html) With winter upon us, and the possibility of power outages during large winter storms a reality, many homes have generators to help in these situations. But improper installation can cause carbon monoxide levels to rise, putting your family at risk. Ensure that generators are installed outside, away from your home, to ensure fumes aren't entering your home. Never install generators in your home, including your garage or basement. Another winter threat is fireplaces, wood or gas, and wood stoves. As you are snuggling up during a long winter night, you need to ensure that ventilation is sufficient. It's always best to have a trained professional inspect and clean your fireplaces and wood stoves on a yearly basis. So what else can you do? Buying a carbon monoxide detector is a cheap and easy way to ensure you are safe. For as little as $20, you can purchase detectors that will alert you if carbon monoxide levels get too high. And if they do, you can quickly evacuate the house and call the fire department for inspection of your home. Most states now require that when you sell your home, these detectors are already installed, just like fire and smoke alarms have been required for years. So be safe this winter season and take precautions as needed. It really could save your life!





Posted by Thomas Murphy on 8/30/2015

Going green has been a term that has been floating around for some time the past few years.  As fears of global warming and overall global awareness have increased rapidly, the ideas soon follow.  It's an interesting and empowering idea, reduce your global footprint and preserve the earth.  The best part is that in some cases, you can save money even with little to no investment. If you are looking to install something like solar panels on your house, there is a federal program for both a business or a person that provides an investment tax credit of 30%.  Depending on the state there are state funded programs that are similar and even programs.  The state programs are similar to the electric car incentives in that they are slowly disappearing, which makes now a good time to make a decision.  Energystar.gov has more information on the specifics. As mentioned that is only one path, there have been companies that claim to decrease your electric bills.  This is achieved through leasing.  A low monthly fee to lease the solar panels and a reduction on your total monthly bill - at least that is the idea.  There are many  knowledgeable professionals in the New England and surrounding areas, who may be able to assist you further.  For example SolarCity provides exactly what was described above.  Keep in mind the results will vary depending on where you live and even the seasons.  A free consultation never hurt anyone though, you could spend less and go green in the process.





Posted by Thomas Murphy on 2/1/2015

Updating your home can be costly. So any home improvement that you can do yourself will help save money. An easy update that doesn't cost too much and that you can do yourself is replacing your moulding. Whether you have basic trim, or common colonial style, there are a variety of new looks you can give to your home. To start, you'll need these tools:

  • a miter box or miter saw, for those angle cuts
  • a coping saw, for thin cuts so moulding meets flush to each other
  • finishing nails
  • a hammer, or finish nail gun
  • a nail set to sink nails below the wood surface
  • a tape measure
When making cuts, where the pieces of wood join together will determine what type of cut to make. Mitering allows for to pieces to join, like around the window. Splicing is used for long walls where one piece of wood is not enough. The moulding joins together by creating 2 45 degree angle cuts, cut opposite, creating a scarf joint, which is less noticeable. Coping is used on inside corners, where only 1 piece of wood is cut at a 45 degree angle and butts up against the other piece of wood. Your moulding doesn't have to be just the style bought at the store. Layers varies types of trim can add a more elaborate and dramatic touch. Home improvement stores will often have free booklets that give you ideas. Just remember to choose a style that matches your home. Something too dramatic in a home that is modest may look out of place. And don't forget there is more to moulding than your baseboard and window casing. Chair rails and crown moulding can really transform a room. There are a variety of decorative trims to choose from to add your own personal touch. Moulding tends to be around $1.00 a foot so depending on your room size, whether you layer trims, and if you add on elements such as chair rails, you could redo a room for a couple of hundred dollars. And make a big impact at the same time.





Posted by Thomas Murphy on 1/25/2015

We are all guilty of it, some worse than others. Homes all over America are brimming with clutter. Do the closets in your home trigger a small avalanche every time you open them? Are your basements and attics filled to capacity with boxes of your adult children’s baby clothes and toys? Do you have holiday decorations from 25 years ago tucked away in corners of your home? The typical American has the tendency to hoard objects and it is becoming an epidemic. Most of us have more objects entering the house than we have exiting the house. It does not take long before all this stuff over burdens the storage systems in the home. We just keep shopping and bringing in more stuff than we are getting rid of. Eventually our counters are muddled with papers, our cabinets are stuffed to the max, and our garage is no longer a place we can store the car. Instead the garage is just another room filled to capacity with boxes and bins of junk. All this clutter is suffocating us and stealing our time and energy. It complicates our life and causes stressful situations when we spend our time searching for missing items. Clutter can impact our social life as well, making us afraid to let our friends into our home. It's time to simplify our life and get rid of the clutter! By clearing out the clutter in your home you begin to reclaim your space and your time. Living a simplified life with less stuff will allow you to live in harmony with out all the chaos. Own less and live more, keep it simple.





Posted by Thomas Murphy on 11/2/2014

Selecting the perfect color can be difficult. Using a color wheel is a good idea when trying to come up with a color scheme, or colors with confidence. When using a color wheel remember opposites attract, each one of these opposite colors complement each other. When using complementary colors make sure one color is more subtle than the other. Another way to use the color wheel is to use colors next to each other. These are related colors which create a less contrasting effect. Using the color wheel you can also choose a monochromatic scheme. This is created by taking any one of the 12 color hues on the wheel and repeating it in various shades, tints and tones. Using the color palates base on one basic color gives you the monochromatic effect. Choosing this style can make the process of coming up with a good color scheme in your home a little easier by having one general color in mind. This style helps to create an elegant look for your home because all the colors flow so smoothly together. Incorporating colors into the home can be over whelming for some people. A good way to see what colors work well together is to look at wrapping paper and gift bags. In the gift wrap isle you will see unusual color combinations that you may be able to bring into your home. Your color scheme can also be inspired by simply pulling colors from the furnishing in the room. No matter how you decide on a color scheme don’t be afraid to take a chance. Remember paint is very forgiving it can always be changed if you are unhappy with the results.