Diana's Neighborhood

Real Estate in New York & Connecticut – Won't you be my neighbor?

A Successful Garage Sale

How to Hold a Successful Garage Sale – from Realtor.org





Garage sales can be a great way to get rid of clutter — and earn a little extra cash — before you sell your home. But make sure the timing is right. Garage sales can take on a life of their own, and it might not be the best use of your energy right before putting your home on the market. Follow these tips for a successful sale.

1. Don’t wait until the last minute. You don’t want to be scrambling to hold a garage sale the week before an open house. Depending on how long you’ve lived in the home and how much stuff you have to sell, planning a garage sale can demand a lot of time and energy.

2. Get a permit. Most municipalities will require you to obtain a special permit or license in order to hold a garage sale. The permits are often free or very inexpensive, but still require you to register with the city.

3. See if neighbors want to join in. You can turn your garage sale into a block-wide event and lure more shoppers if you team up with neighbors. However, a permit may be necessary for each home owner, even if it’s a group event.

4. Schedule the sale. Sales on Saturdays and Sundays will generate the most traffic, especially if the weather cooperates. Start the sale early, 8 a.m. or 9 a.m. is best, and be prepared for early birds.

5. Advertise. Place an ad in free classified papers and Web sites, and in your local newspapers. Include the dates, time, and address. Let the public know if certain types of items will be sold, such as baby clothes, furniture, or weightlifting equipment. On the day of the sale, balloons and signs with prominent arrows will help to grab the attention of passersby.

6. Price your goods. Lay out everything that you plan to sell, and attach prices with removable stickers. Remember, garage sales are supposed to be bargains, so try to be objective as you set prices. Assign simple prices to your goods: 50 cents, 3 for $1, $5, $10, etc.

7. If it’s really junk, don’t sell it. Decide what’s worth selling and what’s not. If it’s really garbage, then throw it away. Broken appliances, for example, should be tossed. (Know where a nearby electrical outlet is, in case a customer wants to make sure something works.)

8. Check for mistakes. Make sure that items you want to keep don’t accidentally end up in the garage sale pile.

9. Create an organized display. Lay out your items by category, and display neatly so customers don’t have to dig through boxes.

10. Stock up on bags and newspapers. People who buy many small items will appreciate a bag to carry their goods. Newspapers are handy for wrapping fragile items.

11. Manage your money. Make a trip to the bank to get ample change for your cashbox. Throughout the sale, keep a close eye on your cash; never leave the cashbox unattended. It’s smart to have one person who manages the money throughout the day, keeping a tally of what was purchased and for how much. Keep a calculator nearby.

12. Prepare for your home sale. Donate the remaining stuff or sell it to a resale shop. Now that all of your clutter is cleared out, it’s time to focus on preparing your house for a successful sale!

September 22, 2010 Posted by | Home, Sellers | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Realtor Open House Day

Viewing a butterfly during Realtor Open House Day. 


July 7, 2010 Posted by | Realtor Open House, Uncategorized | , | Leave a comment

My Life as a Realtor – Day 248

My Life as a Realtor ~

Day 248:

It’s Friday – an easy day.  Took care of a few errands, e-mails, phone calls and getting ready for tomorrow’s Open House for my listing…

~ 2A Hudson Drive ~ New Fairfield CT

April 7, 2010 Posted by | My Life as a Realtor, My Listing | , , , , | Leave a comment

My Life as a Realtor – Day 229

My Life as a Realtor ~

Day 229:

Sunday!  Jonathan went to the Danbury Fair Mall yesterday with friends and finally got a much needed hair cut.  He slept over one of his friend’s house and came home this morning.  I snapped the pic of him while gushing over his new hair doo…

Then, back to work – an Open House on one of my listings    ~ 2A Hudson Drive – New Fairfield CT ~  **CLICK to VIEW** .  My sellers have renovated the 2nd floor and it looks fantastic!

                                                                      2nd Bedroom…. 

                                                                       Office area….

It was such a beautiful warm day and I could start to see that some of the frozen water views of Ball Pond had started to thaw…

March 12, 2010 Posted by | Ball Pond, Connecticut, My Life as a Realtor, My Listing, New Fairfield | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Open House New Fairfield CT

Hosting an Open House today – Sunday 3/7 – 12 to 3pm – 2A Hudson Dr –
New Fairfield CT – with views of Ball Pond! 


Posted via email from Diana’s Neighborhood Pics

March 7, 2010 Posted by | My Photo Blog, Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

Open House – 2A Hudson Dr – New Fairfield, CT

OPEN HOUSE – SUNDAY 1/17 – 12 to 3pm

2A Hudson Drive ~ New Fairfield ~ CT ~ Listed for $299,999

                ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~  CLICK Here to View Listing Sheet  ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Join me and view this wonderful home in New Fairfield

Just across from Ball Pond…

Hope to see you there!

January 17, 2010 Posted by | Connecticut, My Listing, New Fairfield, Uncategorized | , , , | Leave a comment

My Life as a Realtor – Day 115

My Life as a Realtor ~

Day 115:

Public Open House Day today on my listing in New Fairfield, CT

                                                2A Hudson Drive ~ New Fairfield, CT


We recently had a price reduction to $299,999 – WOW!  Adorable,  Affordable AND…   Water Views!

HPIM2874                                                        Water Views from Front Entrance

After the Open House, I did some grocery shopping at Shaw’s – went homedinner – and back to work!


November 16, 2009 Posted by | My Life as a Realtor, My Listing, New Fairfield, Uncategorized | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

My Life as a Realtor – Day 96

My Life as a Realtor ~

Day 96:

SSPX0872                                           Side Entrance to 2A Hudson Drive ~ New Fairfield, CT

Sunday – Public Open House Day for my listing in New Fairfield, CT  ~  CLICK ~ to view Listing Sheet

SSPX0873                                                                          Harvest Decor

 After picking up my gold balloons from Shaws – I made my way to this charming home

Then I flew back to Shaws to do some grocery shopping – went home to roast a pork loin for our Sunday dinner and hopped back on my lap top to continue working…  How quickly this weekend went by!

October 27, 2009 Posted by | Connecticut, My Life as a Realtor, My Listing, New Fairfield, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

My Life as a Realtor – Day 85

My Life as a Realtor ~

Day 85:

Wednesday – Realtor Open House Day! Lot’s to do before heading into the office, including working on a new offer.

Today’s Open Houses were great – Carolyn, Eva, Faith and I set out to view our first home in Carmel, NY32 Brookview Drive, Carmel, NY ~ CLICK ~ to view listing sheet.  An absolutely lovely home, with a very talented owner – I felt as though I was walking through an art gallery, viewing beautiful paintings.  What a pleasure to be able to preview it for potential clients!

We moved on to house #2 – in the town of Kent, NY – 4 Mamanasco Road in Kent, NY ~ CLICK ~ to view listing sheet.  This home is an estate – a great buy with lots of potential.  House #3 was in Patterson, NY48 Morningside Dr, Patterson, NY ~ CLICK ~ to view listing sheet.  Another lovely home just waiting for a new homeowner!  And last, but not least, house #4 in Brewster, NY9 Tea House Lane – Brewster, NY ~ CLICK ~ to view listing sheet – This gated home has stunning architectural details throughout!

HPIM1858                                                                     Views in Brewster, NY

October 19, 2009 Posted by | Brewster, Carmel, My Life as a Realtor, Patterson, Realtor Open House, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

My Life as a Realtor – Day 82

My Life as a Realtor ~

Day 82:

HPIM2748                                           Side entrance to 2A Hudson Drive ~ New Fairfield, CT

It’s Sunday – Public Open House Day on my listing ~ CLICK ~ in New Fairfield, CT

HPIM2745                                                                       Fall Festive Patio

                                       ~~~ CLICK ~~~ Here to view Slide Show from Slide.com


I was pleased with the turn out during the 3 hour Open House.

October 13, 2009 Posted by | Ball Pond, Connecticut, My Life as a Realtor, My Listing, New Fairfield, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

My Life as a Realtor – Day 75

My Life as a Realtor ~

Day 75:

Sunday….  back to Home Depot– except this time, Joe went – Yippee!  He purchased moulding to make a frame around our bathroom mirror and add crown moulding.  I know, I thought he was all done – the renovations seem to never end…


Sent listingsphone calls – set up a Public Open House for my listing – 2A Hudson Drive ~ New Fairfield, CT – for Sunday, October 11th from 1 to 4pm


We also just had a price reductionHome being offered for $305,000


October 6, 2009 Posted by | My Life as a Realtor, My Listing, New Fairfield, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

My Life as a Realtor – Day 60

My Life as a Realtor ~

Day 60:

Today – Saturday – busy, busy!

SSPX0734                            Driving with my gold balloons that I crammed into the back of my little rental

Picked up balloons at Shaws for a Public Open House on my listing52 Mountain Brook Road – Brewster, NY – from 11am to 1pm.


Then flew to get gas and wine on Route 22 in Brewster… 

HPIM2605       Purchased 3 bottles of Red Wine – from Portugal, Spain and this one that reads B~I~T~C~H

Back up Milltown Road – from Brewster, NY into New Fairfield, CT – approx 6 minutes – to grab some lunch at home before my next Public Open House on another listing2A Hudson Drive – New Fairfield, CT

SSPX0552                                                                               Welcome!

During the Open House, a gentleman and his wife came, they had owned this home back in the 70’s – it was awesome to watch them view the home and all it’s changes.   

When I arrived back at home, I was so happy to see that Joe was painting the kitchen walls – a creamy yellow.  I was even happier that I couldn’t cook dinner. Yahoo – Chinese

HPIM2592                                                                Main Moon in New Fairfield

After dinner, we sang Happy 21st Birthday to Melissa – our oldest – did I say 21?  Where have the years gone…


Melissa’s Birthday was on Thursday, September 17th – we had a special dinner, but no time for the cake since friends were taking her out to celebrate!  Therefore, she has been celebrating all weekend!

September 24, 2009 Posted by | My Life as a Realtor, My Listing, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

My Life as a Realtor – Day 57

My Life as a Realtor ~

Day 57:

Morning appointment in Danbury, CT with clients to measure rooms in a home that will soon be theirs!


Then off to New Fairfield, CT to pick up my 4′ wedge at the Food Market.  They had just finished wrapping it – so it will be fresh and yummy for my Realtor Open House on my new listing in Brewster, NY ~~~CLICK~TO~VIEW~LISTING~SHEET~~~  and – I’ll be having an Open House tomorrow here from 11am to 1pm.


Here is my spread for the Realtors that will come to view this spectacular home!


In the evening, I had an inspection in Southbury, CT – another lovely home for my other lovely clients!

SSPX0703                                                  Vibrant Orange flowers in the front yard

September 19, 2009 Posted by | Brewster, My Life as a Realtor, My Listing, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

My Life as a Realtor – Day 54

My Life as a Realtor ~

Day 54:

Sunday!  Public Open House Day on my listing in New Fairfield, CT – Stopped at Shaw’s to pick up my Black & Gold Balloons…


                                                  ********CLICK to View Listing Sheet*********

Set up my Century 21 VJF Open House signs and balloons…


Waited for people in this charming – move-in ready home…

HPIM2532                                                      Views of Ball Pond from Dinning Room

Afterwards, met with Circle Pix photographer to take pics of my new listing in Brewster, NY

                                        CLICK to view 52 Mountain Brook Dr – Brewster, NY


~~~~~~~~~~~CLICK here to view Virtual Tour~~~~~~~~~~~

Then off to Jonathan’s first soccer game – so happy it was right in town – New Fairfield’s Rebel Field – and really happy that they won!



September 15, 2009 Posted by | Brewster, Connecticut, My Life as a Realtor, My Listing, New Fairfield, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

My Life as a Realtor – Day 43

My Life as a Realtor ~

Day 43:

           Realtor Open House Day – for my *****listing*****    in   New Fairfield, CT  – Yeah!
First I went to Shaw’s to pick up some chips and drinks – then off to The Food Market to pick up my party wedge – 1/2 Italian and 1/2 American – Yummy!
SSPX0540                                                                    Waiting for my order…
Put up my Century 21 VJF Realty  Open House Signs so agents could find the home easily…
SSPX0547                                                             Welcoming my fellow Realtors
SSPX0541                                                      Spread out some treats and brochures…
After the Open House, I packed up, pulled up my signs and before heading home, I enjoyed taking one last view of Ball Pond – which fronts this lovely home.

SSPX0565                                                   Ball Pond – New Fairfield, CT – View Up Close

                                                    Won’t you be my neighbor?

September 3, 2009 Posted by | Connecticut, My Life as a Realtor, My Listing, New Fairfield, Realtor Open House, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

My Life as a Realtor – Day 29

My Life as a Realtor ~

Day 29:

On this lovely day I had a ~ mammogram ~ Yup, I said it!  Mount Kisco Medical Group in Brewster, NY– were fantastic!  This was my first time and I can honestly say I will never hesitate to set up future appointments.

Since there were signed posted – no cell phone use!  I had no other choice, but to put mine on vibrate – only checking my e-mail from time to time – and entertained myself by deleting photos from my camera – this helped to keep the jitters down.

After the good news that everything was A – OK – I was off to an appointment in New Fairfield – then home to grab my lap top – on my way to the office, I received the wonderful news that my clients offer on a foreclosure had been accepted – Yeah!  I am so happy for them – they totally deserve this.

Our office had one Open HouseCLICK to view – Colonial on cul-de-sac in Brewster

Then back home– where each time I drive in and out of my driveway – as well as my 2 kids that drive and Joe – we have Fo-Fo that refuses to move – he just stands in front of your car –

HPIM2325             Fo-Fo – my in-laws pup ~ reason for my extra gray hairs

David made dinner – I went back out with Amanda to drop off some more brochures and other items for my listing in New Fairfield ~


August 20, 2009 Posted by | My Life as a Realtor | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

My Life as a Realtor – Day 15

My Life as a Realtor ~

Day 15:

One evening appointment today – in New Milford – near Candlewood Lake.  We were followed around by 2 kitties that seem to have the run of the house.  Funny that my daughter Sara, sketched this picture of a kitty just this morning –

HPIM2160                                                                       Sara’s Drawing

My “To Do” list is getting long…er – need to get motivated and start doing things – I do love crossing off  things I’ve done.  It’s great seeing the list get smaller and I enjoy the sense of accomplishment.  It also motivates the kids to help, they too enjoy crossing off the list.  Here’s just a few items for today that I added to my everyday chores

  1. Clean shelf and nic-nacs to make into our new cookbook shelf ~ CHECK
  2. Go through mail – get rid of junk mail – organize bills that will be paid this week ~ CHECK
  3. Clean out my pocketbook ~ CHECK
  4. Wash all fruit trays and rearrange on breakfast bar ~ CHECK

Before my appointment, I went to the officeCentury 21 VJF Realty – had an Open House today in Brewster, NY –  A home with 3.75 acres and zoned for 2 horses ~ CLICK ~  Eva and I also viewed another home in Brewster  –  a 3 bedroom, 2 bath home that’s aggressively priced ~ CLICK ~

After Open Houses, I received a call – a new client looking for a rental – we’ll be going out tomorrow since she has only 2 months left on her current rental.


Stopped at the bank – then off to A & P in Brewster, NY – flew home to drop off the groceries – picked up my clients to view the home in New Milfordhome again to make dinnerchicken cutlets, baked ziti and salad– Sara and Amanda helped alot with dinner, dishes and laundry.  Maybe, just maybe, I’ll be in bed by 2 am… it’s now almost 1:55am and I have just 1 more thing on my list!

August 6, 2009 Posted by | My Life as a Realtor, Realtor Open House, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

My Life as a Realtor – Day 1

I’ve decided to embark on a journey of writing everyday for a year about my Life as a Realtor.  Some days will be of appointments will clients looking to either sell their home, or looking to purchase one.  Other days will be filled with lots of hours on my laptop in the office or at home Sending listings to clients, Researching the market in and around our area as well as the country – Searching the Multiple Listing Service in both New York and Connecticut to see what listings are new or reduced – Updating my networking sites on Twitter and FaceBook –  Posting on my Blog – Previewing homes during Realtor Open House days – and – Lots of phone calls!  This will all happen in-between my home life with my hubby, 5 children and all our pets!

Day 1:

Spoke with another agent regarding a referral – although nothing much came up in the desired price range.  Posted on my Blog and set up an appointment with a friend to list her home in Brookfield, CT this evening.

Viewed homes during Realtor Open House Day with Carolyn and Eva – agents in my officeCentury 21 VJF – Carolyn was kind enough to drive, again.

Brookfield 123 Carolyn… driving

Click here to view the 4 homes we viewed in Patterson and Brewster, NY

Flew to do errands after open houses, including the supermarket to pick up burgers for a quick dinner – called the kids and designated each to do a job to get dinner done quickly since I had, oh… 15 minutes to drop off the groceries and high tail it to Brookfield.  I get home and of course, the kids have everything under control – one great thing about having lots of children!  Remi, our new pup, greeted me by jumping and leaving 2 paw prints on my white shirt – flew to get changed and off to my friends to list her home!

Brookfield 192 My New Listing

July 22, 2009 Posted by | My Life as a Realtor, Uncategorized | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Homes Visited During Realtor Open House Day

During this past Wednesdays Realtor Open House Day – Carolyn and I viewed 2 MAGNIFICENT HOMES with AWESOME VIEWS – no wonder why I love my job!

Home with views of the Middle Branch Reservoir

Home with views over moutains and reservoir


June 6, 2009 Posted by | Brewster, Carmel, Life as a Realtor, NY, Realtor Open House, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Realtor Open House Day in Patterson, NY

Yesterday was Realtor Open House Day in Putnam County.  Here is one of the homes I viewed in Patterson, NY – It’s been renovated inside and out – ready to just move right in!


For more information and interior photos – or to view this home – call or text Diana – Cell: 203-648-2619 or send me an e-mail – Diana.Santos@Century21.com 


April 2, 2009 Posted by | Home, NY, Patterson, Putnam County, Putnam Lake, Realtor, Realtor Open House, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Selling in the Spring Market


If your considering SELLING in the SPRING MARKET – wonderful!  Warmer temperatures, longer days, flowers peeping from the garden and NO MORE SNOW!!   SPRING is a great time to LIST  your home!

As a REALTOR, putting a home on the market involves many things:

           > Doing a CMA – COMPARATIVE MARKETING ANALYSIS – Here we view  your home to compare it to similar homes that are currently on the market, pending a closing and most importantly, those that have sold in the past few months.

           > Upon receiving the LISTING,  forms are signed and agreements are made – listing time length, commission amount, number of Public Open Houses to expect, marketing material and other items which should also have been discussed during the CMA.

           > And before taking photos and video for the virtual tour – Going over how to show your homes best potential by DECLUTTERING, CLEANING, and ORGANIZING

Bring out that handy tool box.  A screwdriver, glue and touch-up paint goes a long way.  Don’t give a potential buyer many “To Do” things.  Walk around your home and try looking at it through a buyers eyes.  Take your own photos and see what needs to be changed or packed away.  Also, invite a friend or family member who doesn’t live in your home to “pretend” he’s a buyer.  Just remember not to get upset when they tell you to pack away your 152 collection of Unicorns – maybe leaving out 3 of your favorite will make it easier.

      A helpful way is to remember to appeal to all 5 senses:  

SIGHT– organized, clean, decluttered, bright, and a neutral color palate with touches of color here and there by using flowers, candles and throw pillows. 

SMELL – Use candles cautiously, bake cookies – which also helps with TASTE – who’s mouth wouldn’t water while smelling freshly baked chocolate chip cookies?   And better yet – leave out a few!   You can also use Plug-ins or dab light bulbs with vanilla, anything that smells good.  But please remember, if you haven’t cleaned the kitty litter or thrown out the smelly garbage – none of this will really help.

HEARING Soft music playing in the background will help buyers feel relaxed.  But watch your choice of music and don’t have it on too loud. 

TOUCH– have counter tops, door knobs and handles clean.  No one likes to have sticky fingers when they go to open a cabinet – and yes, they will open them along with closets. 

            > Once an agent has a listing – the fun begins!  Many PHOTOS  are taken along with a Virtual Tour VIDEO.  In my office, we use a professional company and I also take numerous photos for my Blog and many other sites that I advertise my listings on.  Most people will first view a home on-line or through a still photo in a Real Estate flyer or brochure – so GOOD photos are important!

Then, the SHOWINGS begin!  – along with a REALTOR OPEN HOUSE and PUBLIC OPEN HOUSES.  Hopefully, you’ll have enough notice before a showing to spruce up  – but if you don’t, there’s nothing wrong with shoving your teenagers dirty laundry under his bed.  It’s better than having it piled on the floor and viewed by a potential buyer.


WON’T YOU BE MY NEIGHBOR?                           sold-2

April 9, 2008 Posted by | Home, Sellers | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment