So, here's the deal. I think every house should have a name. Houses always used to have names because, well, because they didn't have street addresses way back once upon a time. If I said I was going down to 1 Lodge Street you might mistakenly think that I was going down to the Fraternal Order of Elks, but in fact, I would be going to the fabulous Biltmore Estate in Asheville, N.C. which most likely has a few stuffed elks in the humongous game room. Nobody ever refers to this place as 1 Lodge Street.
I like houses with names and I suspect that the owners who actually name their homes must really love them a lot. And a house loved is usually a house that shows well. House names can be descriptive of the place, the style or architecture, the size, and even the owner's personality. And, in real estate, having a name adds a little cache and style to the listing. I've had some homes on the market that had interesting names like Stonybrook Farm, The Farley Garrison House, Temperance Tavern, and Windsong to name a few. These names tell you something or give you a feeling about the property before you even see it.
One of the earliest terms used in house names was "hall." Early halls were homes with just one room where everyone slept, ate, and just tried to survive. Often these were called mead halls. Eventually, rooms were partitioned off to give the lord of the house some privacy and the entry way and corridor retained the name "hall." There was apt to be a large room with a fireplace called the "great hall." That has evolved in to the "great room" of today. Now we think of halls as meeting places, town offices, concert venues, pool rooms, or college dorms down at UNH. Toad Hall is a great name for a house...if you like toads, I guess.
You can tell a lot about the house by the name. Words like "manor, mansion, or estate" when affixed to a name like "Rothschild" will set your expectations pretty high. The words "house" and "place" give you the feeling that either something great happened there or the property has some history attached to it. The term "lodge" can be taken as a sprawling lake house or a tiny shack in the woods. "Camp" could also be taken either way. You can have a camp up in Pittsfield which could be a far cry from one of the Great Camps in the Adirondacks.
In the Lakes Region there are some places that everyone knows by the name and not the address. Castle in the Clouds and Kona Mansion in Moultonborough, Moulton Farms in Meredith, The Lamprey House or Coe House in Center Harbor, and the Benjamin Rowe House in Gilford. But there's not many houses with names until you get down by the lakes.
It seems like lots of lake front property owners are often so excited and happy about being on the water that they just have to call the place something! I wish everyone was like that. These owners love their houses enough to name them. And if their property is for sale that feeling can perhaps impress and stay with the buyers that are looking at it, too. I'd rather market and show the Blue Heron Lodge, Eagle's Nest, Bayside Delight, Quiet Water Camp, Sandy Haven, Sunset Cove Retreat, or Long View Lodge instead of a bland 13 Point Drive or 103 Maple Street any day.
But what about names like Windswept, Mountain View Lodge, or Ridgeline Retreat for those places up on the hill? If you have some acreage you could go with Sunny Slope Farm, Wild Acres Retreat, or Willowgrass Acres (just don't use "Green.") If you have a great place, give it a great name! Get creative and go get a sign made and put it by your entry. It's cheap money and can make an impact and separate you from all those other houses that don't have a caring, loving owner like yourself.
So start thinking and using words like bungalow, cabin, camp, cottage, house, lodge, farm, acres, retreat, haven, respite, refuge, haven, delight, rest, cove, lakeside, shores, or view. Woodsy terms like pine, oak, cedar, and mossy will work nicely. Animal names like moose, bear, dear, chipmunk, and squirrel always work. Who wouldn't wanna live at a place called Chipmunk Lodge or Moose Tracks Retreat? But please, avoid using terms like shanty, hut, or shack. Those won't help.
On July 1, there were 1,284 single family homes available in the twelve Lakes Region communities covered by this report. The median price point stood at $275,668 meaning that half of those homes were listed under that price point. There were 364 homes available under $200,000. That's a lot of affordable inventory! There's a lot to choose from and interest rates are still low so it is a great time to go look for your new home. You can name it "Nu Beginnings Lodge."
Pease feel free to visit www.lakesregionhome.com to learn more about the Lakes Region real estate market and comment on this article and others.
Data compiled using the NNEREN MLS system as of 7/1/15.
Roy Sanborn is a sales associate at Four Seasons Sotheby's International Realty and can be reached at 603-677-7012.
Last Updated on Thursday, 09 July 2015 07:22
On a beautiful summer day Reuben, my dog, and I met four close friends to hike the Belknap Range Traverse. This hike would take us from Mt. Major to Mt. Rowe, a thirteen mile trek across the entire Belknap Range. The day was a welcome relief from the rain that we experienced the past few days and I was fortunate to have good friends along for the day. This was truly a day to appreciate the mountains that are a gift to us, living in the Lakes Region.
The Belknap Range traverse (BRT) is a challenging all day hike that is not recommended for the beginner hiker or families with small children. It crosses the summits of eight mountains: Major, Straightback, Anna, Mack, Clem, Belknap, Gunstock and Rowe. The entire length of the trail is marked with BRT signage as well as blazes. Be sure to watch for the BRT signs and stay on the trail as there are several other trails that join the BRT. Many hikers have taken one of these trails and ended up miles from their intended route. The Alton Fire Dept. and NH Fish and Game can readily attest to this fact, as they have made numerous rescues each year of lost hikers. It's essential that you have a map of the Belknap Range. Maps can be purchased from many local libraries or downloaded at belknaprangetrails.org/belknap-range-trail-map/. It's also important to have a compass and know how to use it in conjunction with the map. The hiker should also have at least two liters of water, plenty of food and snacks, proper footwear, and appropriate clothing for the 13 mile hike. It's also necessary to have a car parked at the end of the traverse or have someone pick you up and drive you back to your car from where you started.
We all met at the Gunstock parking lot, left a car there and drove to the start of our hike at the Mt. Major parking lot. The BRT starts from the right side of the parking lot and is marked with blue blazes.
At 1.4 miles we reached the ledges and several spectacular viewing points looking east to Lake Winnipesaukee and the Ossipee Mountains, soon after we stood on the Mt. Major summit and found the foundation of a cabin that once stood there. From this point we found the BRT signage and blue blazes. There are several trail intersections that can lead you off in another direction, so be sure to follow the blue blazes/BRT signs. At 2.7 miles we arrived at the summit of Straightback Mt. Here we found open rock ledges that offer stunning views to the west. After a short snack break we descended from Straightback, continuing to follow blue blazes. The trail is well marked and winds through a beautiful mix of hardwoods. At 3.6 miles the Precipice Trail diverges left, and soon after we found the summit of Mt. Anna. There are no views from the summit, but a short spur or goat path leads to an old pasture that provides views to the south and west. We continued on the trail dropping down off Anna and climbing to Mt. Mack at 5.2 miles.
￼After having lunch on Mt. Mack we followed the trail along the ridge to Mt. Clem, following red diamond markers. The ridge offers impressive views to the east. We then dropped down to Round Pond, a beautiful mountain pond occupied by a thriving beaver colony. We followed green blazes and at 8.2 miles we arrived at the junction with of the Boulder Trail (blue blazes). We made our way up a steep incline through an extensive rock slide and boulder field and at 8.5 miles the trail merges with the E. Gilford Trail (yellow blazes). Within a half mile we ate our lunch at the summit of Belknap Mountain, beneath the iconic fire tower. All along the way were fields of blueberries just starting to ripen. We had the pleasure of munching on a few berries and within a couple weeks the fields will be filled with ripe, succulent berries.
After a snack break we continued on to Gunstock. At the summit is located a rest room and the trail continues just to the left of this building. From this point the trail begins its final leg to Mt. Rowe along a newly constructed trail following the west side of Gunstock and arriving at Mt. Rowe and the cell phone tower at 12 miles. The BRT follows a service road down to the ski area and the parking lot where our cars were waiting for us.
Our traverse covered 13 miles (Mt. Major to Gunstock parking lots) and took us 9 hours at a leisurely pace. At the cars we said our farewells and looked forward to our next adventure in the mountains of the Lakes Region. I would hope some of you will take the challenge and hike the traverse. It's an experience that you'll long remember.
Gordon has hiked extensively in Northern New England and the Adirondacks of New York State. In 2011 he completed the Appalachian Trail (2,285 miles) hiking north from North Adams, MA to Mt Katahdin, ME in 2007 and in 2011 hiking south from MA to Springer Mt. Georgia, GA. He has also hiked the Long Trail in VT, The International AT in Quebec, Canada and the John Muir Trail in CA. Gordon has summited the New Hampshire Hundred Highest peaks, and the New England Hundred Highest, 98 of these in winter. He spends many days hiking locally and in the White Mountains with his dog Reuben. He especially enjoys hiking in the Lakes Region due to the proximity to his home in New Hampton. He is also a trail maintainer for the BRATTS (Belknap Range Trail Tenders) and can be found often exploring the many hiking trails in the area with his dog Reuben.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 08 July 2015 03:09
The governor's claims that the FY16/17 budget she vetoed is unbalanced and dishonest continue to be unfounded, misleading, and hurtful to the people of New Hampshire. As the chair of the Senate Finance Committee, I stand by our proposal as a solid foundation that is good for New Hampshire, spending $600 million more than the FY14/15 budget.
Within days of the House and Senate passing the $11.35 billion state budget, Governor Hassan irrationally acted on her veto promise. Many, on both sides of the aisle, are scratching their heads about what she hoped to achieve by taking this action. Many recall that when John Lynch was governor, he simply allowed the 2012/13 budget to go into law without his signature. He fully understood the turmoil that would descend on state agencies and our citizens with a veto. His priorities were well-placed when he allowed the budget to pass into law without his signature.
The House and Senate, in anticipation of Governor Hassan's veto, prepared a six-month continuing resolution (using FY15 appropriations) that would prevent a government shutdown. It was a bit of a puzzle when the Democrats introduced their own continuing resolution to fund government at FY16 levels, when they too had joined the chorus of claims that our budget was irresponsible and unbalanced.
Last week the Senate Finance Committee met in public with the non-partisan Legislative Budget Assistant (LBA) to review the governor's accusations that the budget was unbalanced, dishonest and made promises it couldn't keep. One by one, those claims were refuted.
In addition, the public learned that the Department of Health and Human Services had requested additional funding for Medicaid caseload spending. The governor denied that request and neglected to account for it in her budget. If the governor had acceded to the department's request, she would have been out of balance at the close of Fiscal Year 15. It was clearly disingenuous of the governor to then ask the Senate to address a problem she was aware of months before but didn't address.
I appreciate that the governor is willing to work together and I look forward to having some productive conversations. Since revenues are ahead of plan by $42.5 million, we can only assume that if there is a problem (which the governor clearly believes there is), it has to be on the spending side of the equation.
For us, what will be extremely helpful in finding a path forward will be for the governor to provide us with the spending numbers now — and not make us wait until the end of September. If the governor does have a problem, we want to be able to help solve that problem as soon as possible. The citizens of New Hampshire expect no less than for us to come together and solve this problem as soon as possible.
This budget does so much good: it funds the mental health settlement and the 10 beds at the N.H. Hospital and the staff; it fully funds developmental disabilities and the wait list; it restores cuts made by Governor Hassan to the home health agencies (like Visiting Nurses and Granite State Independent Living) and provides the first rate increase since 2006; it increases spending on drug and alcohol prevention, treatment, and recovery by 75 percent more than the last budget; and it restores ServiceLink, Meals on Wheels, the DHHS district offices, and Emergency Shelters.
This budget restores the retiree health insurance premium contribution to 12.5 percent; it spends more than the governor's budget on roads and bridges, restores the DMV stations and state troopers. This budget starts to seriously rebuild the Rainy Day Fund, from $9.3 million to more than $21 million over the biennium. It also offers a modest cut to business taxes which will help our small businesses grow.
This budget sends money back to our cities and towns through state aid grants, flood control, rooms and meals distribution, and increased education adequacy payments.
This budget does all that and more without the $129 million in taxes and fees as proposed by the governor. We found a way to build this budget without adding any unnecessary financial burden on our hardworking citizens.
The governor's unsubstantiated claims (much like the claims she made during our last budget) and her subsequent veto directly impacts our communities, state agencies, and important programs. As we wait for the governor to provide the information on spending, critical new mental health programs don't get funded, increased spending on drug & alcohol programs doesn't happen, cities and towns are held hostage and left wondering about the tax rate-setting process, and much more.
I urge the governor to work with the legislature and share the information we need to move forward.
(A Meredith Republican, Jeanie Forrester represents District 2 in the New Hampshire Senate. She is chair of Senate Finance Committee.)
Last Updated on Monday, 06 July 2015 09:09
The Fourth of July is a time to remember Americans who have contributed much to their country, and this Fourth weekend is a good time to remember two such Americans who died in recent weeks — and whom I'd had the good fortune to know and joust with intellectually since the 1970s — Allen Weinstein and Ben Wattenberg.
Both were sons of Jewish immigrants, born in the 1930s and raised in the Bronx, which then had the highest Jewish percentage of any American county and also large Irish, Italian and black communities.
The Bronx was one of the heartlands of American liberalism — the big argument in 1948 was whether to support Harry Truman or the anti-anti-Soviet, Henry Wallace — and Weinstein and Wattenberg as young adults were proud liberal Democrats. But while both remained liberals in many respects, they were willing to challenge leftist orthodoxy.
As a history professor at Smith College, Weinstein authored two books in the 1970s and came to public attention with his 1978 book "Perjury: The Hiss-Chambers Case." He had begun his work believing, like many on the left, that Hiss was unjustly convicted of perjury in 1950 for denying he was a Soviet spy.
But his research — including 30,000 pages of Justice Department records, interviews with Soviet spies and with Hiss himself — convinced him that Hiss was guilty. And the meticulous narrative and argumentation in "Perjury" convinced readers ranging ideologically from George Will to Arthur Schlesinger, Jr.
Though affirming Hiss' guilt was apostasy in academia, Weinstein continued to teach at Georgetown and Boston University. In 1985 he founded the Center for Democracy, and worked with Democrats and Republicans to advance democratic institutions in the Philippines, Central America and Russia.
Weinstein was a conduit of information between the White House and Boris Yeltsin during the 1991 coup, and, with former KGB agent Alexander Vassiliev, he gained access to Soviet secret police files, the basis for their 1999 book "The Haunted Wood: Soviet Espionage in American — the Stalin Era." Those documents and the until-then-secret Venona transcripts of KGB communications sealed the case against Hiss and other spies whom some considered unjustly accused.
From 2005 to 2008 Weinstein served as archivist of the United States, developing digitized records and arranging federal status for the Nixon presidential library. As a careful scholar, he was not given to broad generalization. But the thrust of his life's work was a reaffirmation of the value of American democracy and the worthiness of the struggle against totalitarian rule.
Ben Wattenberg started not as an academic but as a journalist and first gained attention with his 1965 book, "This U.S.A.," co-authored with former Census Director Richard Scammon, using census data to show how "we have achieved a better America."
That led to a speechwriting job in Lyndon Johnson's White House, where Wattenberg's inveterate optimism about America and Americans never wavered despite multiple urban riots and numerous antiwar demonstrations. Wattenberg worked on Hubert Humphrey's unsuccessful 1968 campaign and in 1970, again with Scammon, wrote "The Real Majority," arguing that the Democratic (or Republican) party could win only with the support of the median voter, personified by an archetypical housewife from Dayton.
Wattenberg's arguments did not convince his fellow Democrats, who nominated George McGovern and Jimmy Carter in 1972 and 1976 while Wattenberg worked for the campaign of the hawkish liberal Henry "Scoop" Jackson. But he never lost faith in his fellow Americans.
When many writers depicted overpopulation as a looming problem, Wattenberg took the opposite view: the world needed more Americans. His immersion in statistics enabled him to appreciate before others the sharp decline in national and world birth rates. His responses included his books "The Good News Is the Bad News Is Wrong" (1984) and "The Birth Dearth" (1987).
For three decades Wattenberg was a scholar at the American Enterprise Institute (where I am a resident fellow) and for even longer he produced and appeared in television series, including "In Search of the Real America" and "Think Tank."
For Wattenberg the United States was, in the title of his 1991 book, "The First Universal Nation," and he proclaimed himself, echoing the 1840s phrase, a "neo-manifest destinarian."
American liberalism has moved in different directions from these two sons of the Bronx, but Allen Weinstein and Ben Wattenberg embodied some of its historic virtues: patriotism, optimism, openness to dialogue and friendly but zestful argument. Legacies we all can learn from.
(Syndicated columnist Michael Barone is senior political analyst for The Washington Examiner, is a resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, a Fox News Channel contributor and co-author of The Almanac of American Politics.)
Last Updated on Friday, 03 July 2015 07:46
It's always interesting to me to see how couples end up in The Lakes Region. For Jack Telefus & Christine King their story travels through several states for high-end corporate job positions with their prized boat in tow the whole way.
Jack was born and raised in upstate New York while Christine grew up in New Jersey. The couple met in 1971 while attending Orange County Community College. They both took jobs at IBM in Fishkill, N.Y. Christine later earned a degree in electrical engineering from Fairleigh Dickson University. Over the next 23 years she rose through the ranks at IBM, excelling in what was then a male-dominated corporate culture. After serving in Vietnam, Jack earned an engineering degree in Maryland and enjoyed a distinguished career at IBM for 30 years. The early years leading to 1971 were difficult times for Jack and Christine, "pinching pennies" was a common theme.
In 1976 they moved to Burlington, Vt. with IBM and they bought a used 27ft boat that they enjoyed cruising around on Lake Champlain for over 4 years. Once the linkage broke they decided it was finally time for a new boat. They wanted a Formula and with no dealers in the Lake Champlain area they journeyed to Lakeport Landing Marina here in Laconia, N.H. and purchased a new 38ft Formula Fastech. (Fun fact...I sold Lakeport Landing to Paul Blizzard that same year). Christine and Jack were ecstatic for their big boat. "We enjoyed boating on Champlain, the lake was big and open, but sometimes the large waves were difficult".
By 1995 Christine had become the vice president of IBM's semi-conductor division and VP of the networking business unit. She had 33,000 employees within the company which produced $6 billion in revenue at the time.
Along came a 'head hunter' in 2001 making an offer Christine and Jack just could not refuse...she was offered the top position of CEO of AMI Semi-Conductor (AMIS) with the understanding she could select the location for the company's world headquarters in Pocatello, Idaho. The New Jersey native smiles and replied "I've always wanted to be a cowgirl" and off they went. AMIS had 10,000 employees worldwide and Chris became the first female CEO of a semi-conductor company in the world. Over seven years the company grew and Chris took it public, selling the company and made the investors a lot of money. Meanwhile "there was little lake water in the southeast corner of Idaho and our prized Formula did not have much playtime after we shipped it out...we had manmade lakes in our area, and everyone laughed at us in our oversized boat in only 10ft of water". Christine's other passion is riding horses; she has seven quarter horses of her own. Thriving off competition and adrenaline she's ranked 3rd in the world in the "Amateur Cow Cutting" class. Chris became the cowgirl she wanted to be.
Enjoying her retirement for only 2 months, Christine was again approached by another head hunter in 2008. She was offered the top position as CEO of Standard Microsystems (SMSC). They sold their home in Idaho and were off to Hauppauge/Long Island, N.Y. Sadly they had to ship the Formula to storage this time, so they sent it back to Lakeport Landing because they didn't want her near salt water. At the same time, they purchased a home in Scottsdale, Ariz. so Christine could house her horses and keep up her cowgirl competitions. (Just last week she was in Las Vegas and won that competition!)
In 2011 their daughter was having her 4th baby. Their last family vacation had been on New Jersey's shore but this year their daughter didn't want beach sand. "Mom, don't you have a boat on Lake Winnipesaukee?" she asked. So for the first time in years they pulled the Formula out of storage and launched it for a vacation. They stayed at Church Landing in Meredith and later rented a lake house in Alton. The kids and grandkids just loved it up here; there was so much for the whole family to do. They visited for four summers; 3-4 weeks each year. "We liked the Lakes Region so much we started looking around for a place on the water." Jack saw a sign on a place and called the listing agent twice, with no answer. He met with Kevin Keenan at Paugus Bay Marina and mentioned the house he viewed from the road. Jack got back to Scottsdale and gets a phone call from a different agent, John Goodhue who Mr. Keenan had referred. "After the call from John and 15 houses later we decided on a beautiful lake home in Alton on the Wolfeboro line. It had everything we needed...great views overlooking the Varney islands, 5 bedrooms, 7 baths, theatre room and an impressive exercise room for Jack. We love the peaceful setting on the lake where it's so easy to boat to so many interesting restaurants. We also love the blue collar appeal of the region and feel of the people around the lake. Everyone's so friendly."
So the story continues on a happy note. Jack is retired from IBM and Christine sits on the Board of Directors of four public companies, one of which is in Boston. She still loves to ride horses but she's found another passion...piloting that Formula boat around all the islands of Lake Winnipesaukee.
Visit www.rocherealty.com to learn more about the Lakes Region and its real estate market. Frank Roche is president of Roche Realty Group in Meredith & Laconia, NH and can be reached at (603) 279-7046.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 31 December 1969 07:00