April 19 2020 Newsletter – What’s Possible?

By fran-lichtman May 4, 2020

Dear Friend:

We are checking in again to let you know that we are fine and to see if you are too? Please let us know how you are and what you are doing during this time to stay sane and healthy.

For me, cooking and exercise have been the two main things that get me through the day with a positive attitude.

Exercise has always been one of my top tools for physical and mental wellbeing. It just makes me feel so much better in every way. Even when I travel, part of planning my trip is where/how I can get a couple of classes in while I am away. 
One of my all-time favorite quotes is “Exercise is a celebration of what your body can do and not a punishment for what you have eaten.” Let’s face it though, in these days of “Corona Cooking” exercise is also helpful in not needing to buy a new wardrobe when it’s time to put on real clothes again.

I mostly workout in my basement, taking classes on zoom from various instructors to support the local studios and stay connected to the people with whom I usually work out. These zoom classes have also given me the opportunity to take a weekly class with one teacher from NYC with whom I ordinarily would not get to work. So that’s been a silver lining for me.

One of the classes I take locally I can now take twice a week. It requires a slightly higher ceiling than we have in our basement so our living room now doubles as my cardiolates studio. Cardiolates is a cardio class on a rebounder that is based in Pilates and incorporates some of the exercises and the principals. It’s really fun, great for your health, and leaves me in a very good mood.

Have you been getting enough exercise? If you want some links for excellent classes I am happy to share the classes that I’ve been taking with you. I like a class with specific instruction on how to properly perform an exercise, leaves me 
feeling good, focuses on alignment, and teaches me how to care of my body. If this sounds interesting to you, I am happy to share some links.


VIRTUAL OPPORTUNITIES: Beat Battles, the Jordan documentary, Earth Week
by Mary Ellen Dawkins

After hearing a lot of buzz on social media, last night I tuned into Instagram to watch/listen to the Babyface vs. Teddy Riley Verzuz Beat Battle. (Billboard magazine explains the history behind the Instagram battles here.) Unfortunately there were a lot of technical difficulties and the battle was postponed, but that means you can still catch it! Follow @verzuztv on Instagram to find out when it’s rescheduled and to hear about more battles. 

My house is full of sports fans who these days are without live sports to follow, so we’ve been watching broadcasts of old games. Thus there is a lot of excitement for new content: tonight’s airing of the first two episodes of ESPN’s Michael Jordan 10-part documentary The Last Dance (tonight at 9 pm). If you are reading this too late, ESPN will run the first two episodes again next week & it will also be available on Netflix in the future. 

Speaking of Netflix, did you know you can watch shows together with friends viaNetflix Party? I haven’t tried it yet myself but it sounds fun & is free, though you have to run it through your Chrome browser.

I’ve been playing Mahjongg on realmahjongg.com (you can play against the computer or real players) and Scrabble via the Words with Friends app on my phone. I was wondering about how to play other games online. I found this articlfrom thegamer.comthat lists Scrabble & 9 other games you can play online.

This week is Earth Week and Columbia High School’s Environmental Club has a full calendar of events – check out their website at 
https://mapsoearthweek.org/. There are vegan meal demonstrations scheduled for tomorrow Monday 4/20 and several panels during the week. They also have a page dedicated to small actions that we can all undertake to help the environment. I’ll be tuning into Sustainable Art (Thursday 4/23 at 3 pm) and the program on Composting (Friday 4/24 at 3 pm).

Finally – Don’t Forget to complete the 2020 Census questionnaire! You can do it online 
here and if you have kids who like to color, Maplewood has downloadable coloring pages here.
by Fran 

We hope you are all staying safe and feeling well.  We are at home coping with this situation as best we can, just like you.  It has given us a lot of time to watch the market and try to see where things are heading and when.

Much to our surprise, there are actually a number of buyers who are actively looking for a new home! There are not many of them but what I can say is that the market has small signs of life:
  • Certain properties that are unique and highly sought after or they are really priced in a way to show value, are actually going under contract quite quickly. 
  • Buyers who are out there during this pandemic are looking for either that bargain or for that property that is just irresistible to them.  
In short, if you were a buyer prior to this social crisis and are open to safe showings and/or virtual showings, it may be an opportunity for you. I know that we have several vacant listings that would offer very safe showings. The prices range from in the $400’s to the $900’s.  

In general, we are seeing a few new listings hit the market each week but nowhere near the “normal” amount. They are however engaging the buyers who are just sitting and waiting until they feel it is safe to come back out to this area.  Everyone wants to get through this as quickly as we safely can!

Let us know if we can help in any way. We have a network of agents who all have properties coming and if you are a buyer just waiting for the right moment, we may have off market opportunities for you.  At the same time, if you are a seller, the same goes for you.  We may have buyers of our own or through our network who may be interested in your home without it going on the MLS.

LOCAL MARKET STATISTICS –  These stats are for single family homes that do not have offers at this moment:

                                                       Active NOW  (as of 3/8/20)
Under Contract since 4/1/20
Maplewood           29 (36)3
South Orange29 (41)6
West Orange73 (96)18
Montclair40 (38)7
Millburn/ShortHills85 (123)3
Summit56 (50)5
Orange19 (17)4
Bloomfield34 (38)15
Union67 (93)19