Archive for January, 2014

What Happens When A Loved One is Diagnosed with Alzheimers?

Unfortunately some of us have had that experience  – I know in my case it was my grandmother when I was in my early teens, my mother’s sister when my son was in his early teens, and then my mom about 14 years ago.  It is a cruel disease in so many ways.

And that is why one of my focuses in my real estate career is the elderly market.  It has its own very unique set of circumstances – one that affects the entire family.  Understanding that I have and will work as a team with other professionals to help the senior and their family through the maze of things that need to happen.

Of course also bear in mind that some seniors are also younger and just may decide to take a new road as they think about retiring.

So there are many roads this may take depending on how young or how old the senior is – medical condition, financial condition etc

One area is that of medical condition – and Alzheimers is just one of those areas.

Below is a link to a great article on how to handle the Alzheimer’s diagnosis in the family and with your loved one.,%202014

As an SRES (senior real estate specialist) I am ready to assist as part of your team.

Joan Parcewski, Realtor and Notary             Woods Real Estate

O 978-262-9665         C 978-376-3978  

What’s Happening in the Merrimack Valley for Fun?

When you buy a home, you consider what the area has to offer – places to go and things to do for you.  Here are some of what is coming up in the Merrimac Valley – The options are endless – check the Greater Merrimack Valley Visitors Center website –

Or visit the Patch websites for many of the surrounding towns –


Discovery Museum – Saturday, Februay 1st at 5:30pm – “Especially for Me” – a free evening for families with children on the autism spectrum – how music therapy can help

Discovery Mucseum – Wednesday January 29th – all day events for National Puzzle Day

Discovery Museum –  Thursday January 30th 10am – celebrating Chinese New Year – the year of the horse


Chelmsford Agway –  Winter Farmers Market – Saturday January 25th


Veriill Farm – February 1st 9am – Pancake Breakfast – get entered into drawign for Verrill Farm BBQ for 4

Concord Museum – Monday February 17th 1pm – A visith with Abraham Lincoln


Four Oaks Country Club – Saturday January 25th 9am – “Blizzard Blast Race” – 5k Winter Obstacle Run


The Old Court Restaurant and Pub – Monday January 27th 7pm – “The Art of Wine Painting Party” – fundraiser to support Catie’s Closet (provides basic necessities to children in need)

Lowell Memorial Auditorium – Friday January 24th thru Sunday January 26th  – “Sesame Street Live”

Lowell Kids Week – February 17th thru February 24th

Tsongas Center at UMass Lowell – Thursday February 13th 7pm – Harlem Glovetrotters

Annual Lowell Winterfest –  February 21st and 22nd

North Reading

North Reading High School – Friday January 31st 7:30pm –  “Xanadu, a musical”


Westford Chorus – Winter Concert – January 25th 7:30pm


Wilmington Voices – 2 day Capella Festival – January 31st and February 1st 7pm – Wilmington Middle School

And for all your real estate needs contact Joan Parcewski, Realtor and Notary – Woods Real Estate     office 978-262-9665     or   cell  978-376-3978  or email

Here to serve veterans seniors, first time home buyers, investors and more – YOU are MY PRIORITY!

Are you or your spouse a Veteran, Active Duty, etc

So many people who have been or are in the military do not realize that they may qualify for a VA no down payment loan and can purchase a home.  

VA Loans Post Biggest Year on Record in 2013

The Department of Veterans Affairs announced that the number of loans it guaranteed reached a record high in 2013.

The VA guaranteed nearly 630,000 mortgage loans in 2013, says Mike Frueh, the director of the VA’s Loan Guaranty Program. The average loan was about $225,000. The VA’s total loan volume has soared about 372 percent since 2007, according to Chris Birk, the executive editor at Veterans United Home Loans.  Read the rest of this story by clicking on the link below

Joan Parcewski, Realtor & Notary    MRP (Military Relocation Professional)

SRES (senior real estate specialist)   LMC (loss mitigation certifieed)    CIAS (certified investment agent specialist)    c 978-376-3978     o 978-262-9665

Contact me by email or phone or complete the form below

Your FICO Score and Lenders

We all hear how important it is to not only check on your credit report at the three major credit bureaus (Equifax, Experian, and Transunion)  but also that we should know our FICO scores.  It is an intricate process involving a mathematical equation and comparisons to patterns in hundreds of thousands of past credit reports.  This allows them to arrive at this score that estimates your level of future credit risk, ranging from 300 to 850.  I think you can guess that you don’t want to be at 300, would like to be at 850, but many/most fall somewhere in the 600 to 700 range.  The higher the score the better the interest rate you receive.  Make sense as the risk becomes less as your score increases.

I subscribe to a newsletter from Valley Credit Repair in Lawrence MA (Kim Carpentier  He recently sent out information on what makes up that FICO score and it is really very interesting to see the %s that apply –

35% of your Credit Score —  Payment History.  This includes missed payments, collections, bankruptcies etc.  The older the information the less of an impact.

30% of your Credit Score — Utilization.  This is the amount of credit you have in used compared to your available credit.  It is suggested that 10% of your available credit be utilized.

15% of your Credit Score  — Credit History.  How long you’ve had accounts open.

10% of your Credit Score — Inquiries.  If you apply for credit and then don’t get it, it will impact you negatively. 

10% of your Credit Score  — Types of Credit. That would include mortgages, auto loans, revolving credit and installments.

For those who may ask the question, what about my income.  Your income has nothing to do with your credit score. 

So as you can see it is important to review all three of your credit reports at least once a year (free service at since what appears there is what affects your FICO score.  And the official website for obtaining your FICO score is

Being armed with information and making any changes needed to improve your score can mean the difference of nearly 1.5% points in interest between a score of 620 and a score of 700 or more.  In a mortgage for instance that is many thousands of dollars over the length of the mortgage. 

Subscribe to Kim’s newsletter by emailing him at  Be sure to get your credit reports from the three credit companies, and check your FICO score.  You may be paying a higher interest rate than you need to.  Your credit score can be improved.

Spring market is right around the corner.  Be prepared. 

And if you have a home to sell, contact me for your free market evaluation.  Let’s work together to get the most for your home so we can find you your next dream home!

Joan Parcewski, Realtor and Notary       O 978-262-9665         C 978-376-3978

Woods Real Estate    655 Boston Rd Unit 6A   Billerica MA 01821



What is the purpose of an appraiser?

So I pose the question to you – do you know when or why you would use an appraiser?

If you said that the bank uses an appraiser when they are going through the loan process, you would be right.

If you were paying cash for a property, wouldn’t you want to know that the property value is going to appraise for the amount that you are paying,.  You would want the purchase and sale to say that it should appraise at or above the accepted offer price.  Right?

What about when you are going to do some major renovations to your home?  Did you ever think about calling in an appraiser to review the intended renovation and make sure that it makes financial sense to the final anticipated value (after the renovations are made).  You may find that certain renovations, while you might think they are worth, really don’t add to the value.  It is an opportunity for a second opinion so to speak before you start paying money out of pocket.

If you need a referral for an appraiser, email me at

If you are thinking about putting your house on the market, or need a value for your insurance company, or perhaps for a divorce situation or an estate situation, email me at or by cell 978-376-3978

Joan Parcewski, Realtor and Notary at Woods Real Estate

Woods Real Estate   655 Boston Rd Unit 6A  Billerica MA 01821

O 978-262-9665    C 978-376-3978

MRP (Military Relocation Professional), SRES (Senior Real Estate Specialist), LMC (Loss Mitigation Certified), SFR (Short Sale and Foreclosure Resource), CDPE (Certified Depressed Property Expert), CIAS (Certified Investor Agent Specialist), GREEN, E-Pro, GRI (Graduate Real Estate Institute), CBR (Certified Buyer Rep)

YOU are my Top Priority. Investors, Buyers, Sellers, Landlords, Tenants, Vacation Properties. Let’s work together to open the door to YOUR dreams


Merrimack Valley – Mass

When I ask my clients where they are looking for a house, sometimes they will name an area – like “Merrimack Valley“.  And I immediately know that they may not know where they want to live.

Know which towns are included in the Merrimack Valley – Here’s the list

Acton – Ashby – Ayer – Bedford – BillericaBoxborough – Burlington – Carlisle – Chelmsford – Concord – Dracut – Dunstable – Groton – Lexington – Lincoln – Littleton – Lowell – Maynard – Pepperell – Shirley – Stow – Sudbury – Tewksbury – Townsend – Tyngsboro – Westford – Wilmington – Woburn

To put this into perspective – distance from Boston

While Billerica, Burlington, Wilmington, Woburn are all approximately 20 – 25 miles from Boston,  Ashby is just over 55 miles (1 hour 15 minutes) –

While Billerica, Burlington, Wilmington, Woburn are more what we might consider to be cities, while Ashby is very much a rural town.

It is always a good idea to drive through a town you might want to move to – Check out the towns around it, stop at a local eatery, drop into a local shop, visit a park or open space.  Make your home search more productive by choosing towns that fit your family and lifestyle.

And wonder what events and attractions you might find in the various towns in the Merrimack Valey? – check out this website– a few events will be ending over the next few days – you may want to take them in!

Happy touring.

Joan Parcewski, Realtor                                                                  O 978-262-9665                       C 978-376-3978

SRES (Senior Real Estate Specialist), MRP (Military Relocation Professional), CIAS (Certified Investment Agent Specialist), CDPE (Certified Distressed Property Expert), LMC (Loss Mitigation Certified), SFR (Short Sale and Foreclosure Resource Specialist)

Woods Real Estate     655 Boston Rd Unit 6A    Billerica MA 01821

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