Sunday, June 17, 2018


The good weather brings us all out to enjoy and play.  The roads seem to suddenly fill up with runners and bicyclists on every main artery in town.  Last week a dear friend lost her life in a bicycle accident in Rockville Centre. 
Our column this week will focus on cycling safety for our North Fork community.  Even if you are an experienced rider, it’s always a good idea to review safety fundamentals.  And please teach them to your children.
Advice for Safer Cycling:
  • Wear a brightly colored helmet and you reduce your risk of serious injury by as much as 85%.  Don’t wear headphones while riding! Do wear reflective material on your clothing.
  • Keep your head up and look ahead, not at the ground. You need to see what is coming up so you have time  to react and maneuver.
  • Keep both hands on the handlebars and both feet on the petals.
  • One person per bike. Riding with unsecured passengers puts you at risk for injury to yourself and others.
  • Ride in single file with space between bikes.
  • Ride on the right side of the road, never against traffic. Otherwise, you are at risk for an accident – or a ticket.
  • Plan ahead if you will ride in a group. Agree on the route ahead of time. Have a plan on what you will do if separated by traffic.
  • If you will be riding in an unfamiliar area, check out local laws and rules first.
  • Avoid busy roads and peak traffic times on your route.
  • Before riding at night, ask someone to help you check your visibility to motorists.
  • Maintain the bikes in your household. Keep chains clean and lubricated and periodically inspect brake pads.
  • Communicate your intention to turn, stop, and change lanes using recognized hand signals.
  • Identify potential hazards and pay attention to your surroundings. Uneven, rough surfaces can cause falls. An object in the road can cause a flat tire, loss of balance or unsafe maneuver. Avoid riding across unknown objects. Slippery surfaces create a loss of traction which may cause you to lose control of your bike. Slow down or walk your bike across slippery surfaces.
  • Before entering a roadway: Stop. Look left. Look right. Look left. BE SAFE!

Dedicated to Ellen Stegman- we will miss your vim and vigor, your eternal optimism, your beautiful mind and your strong spirit. God’s Speed dear friend!

Sources: Bicycle Safety Riding Tips,;; (National Safety Council).

Sunday, June 3, 2018

Staging: A Powerful Selling Tool!

It’s June, and the warmer weather is here - well, almost - and if you’re thinking of putting your home on the market, you may want to get cracking!  It’s important to do a speedy assessment of what needs to be done to get in front of the swell of buyers coming to the North Fork this time of year. 
               Owners sometimes becomes psychologically detached, once the decision to sell it made, and prefer not to invest time and money into the home they are leaving.  But our experience has shown that  buyers discount their offers when repairs and updating is needed, often at many times the actual cost of fixing-up. Major renovation when selling a home, is often not a practical solution.  But “strategic fixing up” -  like fresh neutral paint, a deep cleaning,  removing wall-to-wall carpet when they cover beautiful wood floors - actually enhances the look of the home and the desirability. Even more importantly, a nicely staged home with attractive photographs will have a greater impact on the internet where almost 90% of buyers begin their search.
               Owners often ask me why we suggest they “declutted” or remove family pictures, etc.  Certainly people see through all that?  The truth is some people do see past these things, but most people start focusing on the family pictures or a paint color they really don’t care for and leave the house without looking at what they came to see.  A nicely appointed, inviting home, shows better than empty or cluttered rooms.  That is why we always recommend our professional staging services to sellers which we include in our service.  Often, it’s best to detach from the d├ęcor and let a professional do the sprucing up.  We have had major success with even some of the simplest staging techniques.  One of our clients expressed pleasant surprise after her home was staged, she said it was like coming into a decorator’s home.  The home sold within weeks and the seller enjoyed every moment of her “new” home during that time!
               So don’t delay, call me at 631 765 5333, and we will be happy to meet with you.  We will assess your home’s “comparable market value” and if you wish, put a staging plan together that will suit your needs at the least amount of inconvenience to you. At Beninati Associates, we really listen, we care and we get you results!
*Source: National Association of Realtors® 2017 Profile of Home Staging.