The Dahlia Bequest

May 15, 2017  
Filed under Feature Stories, Home & Garden

Photo by Fred Kenney

Photo by Fred Kenney

By Fred Kenney

When my father-in-law passed too soon in 2015, he left many legacies.  I experience his faith when I’m with his wife of 60 years and with his daughter, my wife. I hear his passion for a good debate or deep conversation when I’m with his son.  I see his enthusiasm for a great book, love of an adventure and appetite for good food in my kids. And for me, his love of gardening is alive and well when I sink my hands into the dirt each spring to replant his dahlia bulbs.   Read more

Dealing with Dahlias

May 15, 2017  
Filed under Feature Stories, Home & Garden

Dahlia Myrtles FollyWhen & Where to Plant

For best results, dahlias should be planted from mid-April through May for most areas with ground temperature reaching approximately 60 degrees. In general, about the same time you would plant your vegetable garden. Dahlias need a sunny location to thrive. An area that receives at least 8 hours of direct sunlight is best. Less sun equals taller plants and less blooms. Exception for hot climates, they will need morning sunlight, afternoon shade. Read more

Add Drama to Summer Gardens with Dahlias

May 15, 2017  
Filed under Home & Garden

Dahlia Myrtles Folly

(Photos courtesy of Longfield Gardens)

By Melinda Myers

Plan now for a memorable grand finale in this year’s garden. Dahlias are spring-planted bulbs with big, colorful flowers that bloom continuously from midsummer to the first fall frost. Read more

Table Settings 101

September 15, 2016  
Filed under Home & Garden

Great table settings are never complete without a floral arrangement. (Contributed photo)

Great table settings are never complete without a floral arrangement. (Contributed photo)

By Joseph Pubillones

Setting a proper table takes a lot of skill and thought. The decor of the home can set the tone, the kind of food, the type of occasion and number of guests can affect the overall design and setting of a table. Protocol and etiquette rules play a role in the arrangement of tables as well, but sometimes rules are meant to be broken, especially if in search of a good time. Read more

BBB Offers Tips on Finding Reliable Help for Fall Cleanup and Maintenance

September 15, 2016  
Filed under Home & Garden

Now is the time to get your home and yard prepared for the cold. Though there are many reliable businesses that provide these services, there are also a few that have no plans to actually do the work. Better Business Bureau serving E. MA, ME, RI and VT offers some steps to ensure your property is taken care of this fall. Read more

Homebuyers Beware: Email Closing Costs Scam Alert

August 18, 2016  
Filed under Home & Garden

scam alertBuying a home this spring? If so, watch out for this cunning new con. A recent alert from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) warns that scammers are hacking into email accounts and instructing homebuyers to wire closing costs straight into their pockets.  Read more

Imagine an Oasis

August 18, 2016  
Filed under Home & Garden

Creating an outdoor garden room can be accomplished even with limited space and budget. (Photo courtesy of Gardener's Supply Company)

Creating an outdoor garden room can be accomplished even with limited space and budget. (Photo courtesy of Gardener’s Supply Company)

Designing an outdoor room for your home

By Melinda Myers

No matter your budget, space or gardening experience, you can design an outdoor entertainment area for you, your family and friends to enjoy. Read more

HyperSound

June 10, 2016  
Filed under Home & Garden, Mature Matters

hypersound 3

A Sound Revolution for Your TV

By Gary M. Kaye
Chief Content Officer,
Tech50+ (www.tech50plus.com)

I’ve been covering technology long enough that I don’t use the phrase “revolutionary” lightly. But the technology from the HyperSound division of Turtle Beach truly is revolutionary, with broad implications for sound reproduction. Frankly, it’s gonna take some ‘splaining, so please read on.

Read more

It’s National Moving Month: Avoid a Moving Mishap

May 24, 2016  
Filed under Home & Garden

Mixed race couple in new homeWhen Jaime accepted a job offer across the country, the excitement of moving back to the east coast overshadowed the need to thoroughly research long-distance movers. The new job was starting within the month, which unfortunately made for a hasty move.

Jaime got an estimate over the phone and the moving company promised a ten-day delivery. On the day of the move, Jaime’s personal belongings were packed up and she started her trip back east.

“Everything happened so quickly and they seemed reliable, so I trusted them with my stuff,” Jaime recalled.

Jaime arrived at her new home and waited for the movers. They failed to show up within the promised 10 days and she became worried. Almost a week late, the movers finally arrived. Upon delivery, her furniture was broken and scratched, mice were living in her couch, boxes were smashed and her clothes had a foul odor.

Although Jaime purchased insurance, the moving company barely covered the cost of the ruined furniture and clothing. Troubleshooting this move-gone-wrong included meetings with furniture appraisers as well as the movers in question; bills and paperwork; and countless phone calls, all of which could have been avoided.

To avoid a moving mishap, Better Business Bureau Serving Eastern MA, ME, RI & VT (BBB) recommends checking out reliable movers online with BBB’s Accredited Business Directory. Here you can read customer reviews and find out more information on over one hundred BBB Accredited movers.

“In hindsight, I regret not doing more research on my end. Although it would have required me investing more time during a hectic point in my life, it would have saved me time, money and heartache in the end.”

May is National Moving Month and BBB urges consumers to check out these tips for hiring a trustworthy moving company:

Do your research. Look up moving companies on bbb.org. Many movers that are BBB Accredited Businesses are also AMSA ProMovers; these companies have pledged to uphold high standards of trust and to resolve complaints quickly. Note the length of time a mover has been in business and read reviews from previous customers.

Get at least three estimates. Written, in-home estimates help you make an informed decision. Show the mover everything that needs to be moved. Be wary of unusually high or low estimates. If someone says they can give you an estimate over the phone or by email, it’s possible they’re trying to scam you.

Get all agreements in writing. Read everything carefully and make sure you have it all in writing. Get copies of everything you sign, especially the most important document, the bill of lading, which is the receipt for your goods and the contract for their transportation. Never sign any blank forms. Be on the lookout for fine print or any exclusions to your agreement.

Know your rights. Interstate movers are required by law to provide you with certain information that explains the moving process, as well as your rights and responsibilities during and after the move. Ask for proof of licenses, insurance, etc.

Protect your possessions. Make sure that your mover provides full-value protection insurance for any lost or damaged possessions. Note that insurance is by the pound, so expensive items such as a flat-panel television may need additional replacement cost coverage in case they are damaged in transit.

Be wary of unusual requests. If a mover asks for a large down payment or full payment in advance, that may be a warning sign. And if a company says it won’t return your items to you without more money than you agreed to pay, contact BBB or local law enforcement for help.

Take your valuables with you. Cash, coins, jewelry, photographs and important papers should be taken with you or shipped separately using a shipping service with tracking numbers and insurance.

Ask questions. Don’t be afraid to ask questions about anything you don’t understand. If the moving company can’t or won’t answer your questions, you might want to look for another mover.

For more information you can trust, visit us at bbb.org or like us on Facebook.

Turn Your Bathroom Into a Spa

May 19, 2016  
Filed under Home & Garden

Creating an at-home getaway by incorporating a spa/bathroom in a home is becoming quite popular. (Courtesy photo)

Creating an at-home getaway by incorporating a spa/bathroom in a home is becoming quite popular. (Courtesy photo)

By Joseph Pubillones

As Americans hustle and bustle to make ends meet and the work hours extend well beyond 40 hours per week, stress is at an all-time high. Stress is responsible for triggering incidents from panic attacks to illness and even cardiac arrest. This is why the spa business is booming.

 While some business folks may get the occasional perks of downtime to book a day at a spa, most American families do not have the luxury of time. Bringing the concept of the spa to your home is becoming quite popular. Read more

Next Page »