Finders, fixers.

delivery at boston building resources center

Shopping the Habitat ReStore and Boston Building Resources Center

One of the challenges of owning an old house — and there are many! — is finding stuff that matches your home. It can be tough to find doors that go with the ones in your 1890s Victorian or window molding as wide or as detailed as the trim in your 1920s bungalow. And that’s…

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habitat volunteers, photo by rob swystun

Free or cheap ways to hone your DIY skills

As much as we may want to, most of us don’t have the time to become a carpenter’s apprentice, nor the money to go to the North Bennet Street School. Fortunately there are other ways to pick up some basic home improvement and DIY know-how. I recently wrote an article for the Boston Globe about a…

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148 monument st. exterior

Wish Listing: Concord

I spent a day in Concord a couple weeks ago while I was working on this story for Sunday’s Boston Globe. And just… wow. It’s really an idyllic place. Between the central town square, the shops on Main Street, the rolling green hills, active farms, the miles of bike paths, and a grip on local and literary history that…

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DIY end table from reclaimed wood

How to build a rustic DIY end table from reclaimed wood

I’ll admit it: I’m a garbage picker. On Sunday evenings I like to go for a jog or a walk through the neighborhood, and it just so happens that Monday is trash day. And honestly, people throw out a lot of good stuff! Now, my wife likes a clutter-free (not to mention trash-free) house, and…

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20 simmons road exterior

Wish Listing: Hingham

When it comes to the South Shore, Hingham has it all. It’s beautiful. It’s historic. It has a cute downtown. Grand old houses dot sidewalked, tree-lined streets. It’s on the ocean. There’s a harbor and a public beach. And it’s got commuter rail service, a ferry to Boston, and a major highway. Not even fancy Concord can say…

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Is Angie’s List worth the money?

When we first bought our house about seven years ago, our to-do list, based in part on our lengthy, detailed home inspection report, was literally pages long. More like a to-do binder. We knew next to no one in Quincy, and after renting for all of our adult lives, we certainly didn’t have a ready…

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Wish Listing: Craigville Beach

Summer’s officially here — and with it, visions of the Cape. This week’s lust-worthy listing is a big-but-somehow-quaint cottage near Craigville Beach in Centerville, where ocean breezes keep things cool and comfortable even as the rest of us sweat through our underwear on the streets of Boston. Oh, and it has a pretty nice view: I love living…

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photo of uhaul truck by kai schreiber
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11 ways moving can improve your life

The American Dream has always been linked to mobility. Religious exiles sailed here to start a new, better life. Millions of immigrants later followed in their wake seeking the same. In fact, mobility was part of the American Dream even before there was an “American Dream” — many Plains Indians tribes were nomads who followed the…

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Wish Listing: Quincy

I know you’re not supposed to covet they neighbor’s stuff and whatnot, but compared to our monstrous two-family, the cute dutch colonial next door has always seemed downright adorable. And now it’s for sale! Won’t you be my neighbor? Sure, it’s not a million-dollar Milton mansion or anything. But Redfin pegs our neighbor’s place as a…

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Charlestown, photo by Mike Norton

Should you buy a house, condo, or multi-family?

You’re finally ready to buy a home — there’s just one thing: “Home” can mean a lot of different things to different people. Do you enjoy apartment living, with perks like professional landscaping and snow removal? Have you always dreamed of having your own house with a front yard, driveway, and picket fence? Does the idea…

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3 house projects for a dry spring weekend

Happy Memorial Day weekend! It sure is a gorgeous start to summer in Boston: warm, sunny — and really, really dry. The National Weather Service warned of an “elevated fire weather risk” extending through Sunday because of the extremely dry conditions we’ve been having. Here are three spring projects you could tackle around the house…

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roslindale house

Wish Listing: Roslindale

Our last lust-worthy listing was a million-dollar colonial in East Milton — purely daydream territory. This week? We have an actual bargain on our hands. This place needs a bit of work, and that’s the only reason there’s a Doctor’s Row-area two-family — just  a few blocks from the heart of Roslindale Square — on…

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