• Making Roof Repairs Yourself? Careful, Or This Could Happen

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    Doing roofing projects and repairs can be challenging — and downright dangerous — if the proper safety measures aren’t taken. Though Mark Graham of the National Roofing Contractors Association advises that most roofing projects — from heavy-duty, complex installations to smaller projects like fixing leaks — should be handled by a roofing professional, there are some precautions that homeowners can take if they decide to go down the DIY route.

    Tip No. 1: Don’t go it alone. If you must do roof repairs or projects, do it with a buddy. Not only can the extra pair of hands help with, say, moving large quantities of heavy shingles, but having someone to discuss and work through issues with can be helpful as well. Most importantly, if an accident should happen, there will be someone there to help you.

    Tip No. 2: If you must do repairs alone, use a safety system. Install roof brackets before engaging in any serious work up there, or even better, invest in a roofing …read more  

  • Your Perfect Apartment Might Not Be in Your Favorite Neighborhood

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    Anyone who has been apartment hunting lately knows that just as the prices have changed, so have the rules. And in the country’s most competitive markets, the process can be a blood sport. No matter where you want to hang your hat, experts advise being realistic about expectations and budget. There’s nothing worse than falling in love with a neighborhood you can’t afford.

    When budget is an issue, experts suggest looking for an area with the same attributes as your dream ‘hood, but at a lower cost. If you’ve fallen in love with the leafy but pricey streets of brownstone Brooklyn, for instance, you may find your money stretching farther in Jersey City, a lower-profile neighborhood with a similar vibe — and, depending on where you land, killer views of Manhattan.

    “I recommend people be open to areas other than Manhattan and to other parts of Brooklyn that are commuter-friendly,” says Eric Benaim, founder of Modern Spaces, a Long Island City-based real estate firm.

    Louise JordanFor Louise Jordan (pictured at left), 35, …read more