Saturday, August 8, 2015


August is Family Fun Month and Bucks County has tons of activities that guarantee a great time for the whole family, year-round! Check out any of these attractions for hours of nonstop fun and make some new memories with your loved ones.

Sesame Place®, the nation's only theme park based entirely on the beloved children's show Sesame

Street®, is right here in Bucks County! Join the party and celebrate the amusement park's 35th birthday all-season-long with exhilarating rides, cool water slides and all-new toe-tapping shows starring everyone's favorite furry friends. The fun never stops at Sesame where everyone can be a kid again! 

Mini golf is the perfect family-friendly activity and the course at Golf Adventure is one of the area's best! With 18 holes, four ponds and two streams as well as a 15-foot waterfall, the scenic course is the
ideal setting for a family outing. After you make your way through the 18 holes, snack on soft-serve ice cream, milkshakes, soft drinks, pizza, hot dogs and more at the course-side food court.

Peddler's Village is home to Giggleberry Fair, a spectacular indoor play center that's fun for kids and adults alike! Its centerpiece is Giggleberry Mountain, the area's largest indoor obstacle course at three-stories tall. Make sure to check out the game room, equipped with more than 40 of the newest games on the market and then take a ride on the vintage 1922 Grand Carousel. If you've worked up an appetite, The Painted Pony awaits with delicious fresh pizza, burgers, hot dogs, chicken tenders and many more kid-friendly foods and snacks.

When it's hot, there's no better way to spend time outdoors with your family than at Bucks County River Country. Located in the beautiful village of Point Pleasant, they offer kayaks, canoes, river rafts and the popular river tube available to take for two- to four-hour trips along the scenic Delaware River. Come see the "World's River Tubing Capital" for an adventure the whole family will love!

Grab your family and a hammer and head to Ringing Rocks Park, an eight-acre boulder field and
geologic wonder. When struck with a hammer, the rocks give off a loud, high-pitched ringing noise so you can make your own music all day long. After you and your family take turns taking your swings, hit the trail to explore the rest of the park, home to Bucks County's tallest waterfall. 

All aboard the historic New Hope & Ivyland Railroad! Travel into a scene from the past as this 1925 steam locomotive pulls passengers from New Hope to Lahaska on a 45-minute ride through the beautiful Bucks County countryside. Journey back in time, learning what rail travel was like for your ancestors as you make new memories of your own! 

Family fun is always in season at Shady Brook Farm! One of the last working farms in historic Bucks County, Shady Brook offers tons of exciting festivals year-round as well as "Pick-Your-Own" Days where guests can head out into the fields to pick fresh fruits and vegetables. While you're there, make sure to get a scoop from Uncle Dave's Homemade Ice Cream. Since setting up shop at the farm in 2007, Uncle Dave's has been serving up super premium, hand-dipped ice cream to hungry customers of all ages!

Monday, July 27, 2015

My Appraisal Came in Low, Now What?

Whether you are buying or selling a home, the appraisal matters. Even when the buyer and seller have agreed on a price, the deal could fall apart if the appraisal comes in low.

In a sellers’ market when there are plenty of qualified buyers, multiple offer situations can drive up the purchase price higher than the sale price of the comparable properties.
In a buyers’ market, there are more properties on the market and there are fewer buyers purchasing, so values will be soft or falling.
Either way, the appraisal can be cause for concern.

There are several other reasons that an appraisal can come in low.  There could be an abundance of foreclosure or short sales that would drive values down. The appraiser could be from outside the area and not have local market knowledge, or they could be inexperienced.  Or the seller could have overpriced the property in the first place.

So your appraisal came in low, well here is what you can do. First, don’t panic because there are options so that the deal will not fall through. The buyer can make up the difference in cash by adding to the down payment to reach the agreed upon purchase price. If you are the seller, you could have a pre-sale appraisal completed when you list the property for sale.

The seller could lower the sales price to meet the appraised value. The buyer or the seller could order and pay for a second appraisal. You could ask the listing agent or buyers agent to provide a list of comparable properties that do support the value, and ask the underwriter to re-evaluate the appraisal. There is always the chance that they will consider new or overlooked information.

The deal doesn’t have to fall apart, but some do. If you remember that most problems are correctable
and address the problems one at a time, you should be able to work through them and get the deal to closing. If you have any questions on appraisals, feel free to call me directly at

Friday, July 24, 2015

Thngs to do in Bucks County This Weekend

11th Annual Bucks County Quilt Show

3207 Street Road, Bensalem, PA 19020
9:00 AM to 5:00 PM
Free to Attend

More than 100 handcrafted quilts on display at the Bucks County Visitor Center in Bensalem (Bucks County, PA) The Bucks County Quilt Show at the Bucks County Visitor Center in Bensalem is celebrating its 11th anniversary this year with more quilts on display than ever before. Presented by Visit Bucks County and The Quilt Academy of Bensalem, this annual exhibit features over 100 quilts hanging from 25-foot-high beams and displayed throughout the Visitor Center's Main Gallery. The Quilt Academy of Bensalem, an organization which offers a variety of quilting classes, has donated nearly 100 pieces for this show.

Exhibit "To Save Our Fellow Citizens": Volunteer Firefighting, 1800-1875

Mercer Museum
84 South Pine Street
Doylestown, PA

For more than 100 years, firefighting was the responsibility of every neighborhood and citizen. The city’s fire companies fervently believed that fighting fire was a community responsibility, best performed by virtuous and heroic men. Paid fireman finally replaced volunteers in 1871, signaling a change in beliefs about public service.
The Mercer Museum’s engaging exhibition will include more than 175 historical firefighting artifacts including tools, colorful parade regalia, apparel, artwork, photographs, fire engines and fire equipment, and other unique items from the Museum’s permanent collection. The all-ages exhibit will also feature hands-on activities for children.

2015 Sixth Annual New Hope Film Festival

Venues throughout New Hope
New Hope, PA 

Don't miss the 2015 Sixth Annual New Hope Film Festival that will take place from July 24th - August 2nd in New Hope, Pennsylvania. Get ready for an exciting line-up of 80 films from 16 countries, with something for everyone. The 2015 Program Guide includes the schedule, venues, a description for each film and other important information about the event. Tickets are available at See you at the Festival!

Tower Tour For Families

Fonthill Museum
East Court Street & Route 313 
Doylestown, PA   

Start times: 10:30 am & 1145 am Children and adults explore Henry Mercer’s castle from basement to tower and learn about Mercer’s creative ideas through stories and prints.  Children must be 6 or older and able to climb the steep stairs.   Reservations required, call 215-348-9461 or email


Monday, July 20, 2015

Defend your Title – 4 Common Title Problems

You have just closed on your new home. You have signed your name for what seems like hours.  With deed and keys in hand, you’re off to move in and get settled knowing that you are protected and safe in your new home. You may think that everything is just fine, but what if the sellers long lost Uncle John comes knocking on the door. He says he has a deed to the property or an unrecorded will granting him ownership rights.

This is why you purchased title insurance. There are many common title issues that could arise after the closing. These are 4 of the most common issues and how your title insurance will protect you.

·      Undiscovered encumbrances occur when a third party holds a claim to part of all of your property.  This could be an unrecorded lien because the seller has not paid a contractor for work done, a deed restriction or covenant that limits the type of shed you can build, or a license granted to a neighbor to store his fishing boat.

·      There could be an error in the public records. While we think we are perfect, we are human and we make mistakes. There could be a clerical or filing error that affects the deed. There could be a mistake made in the survey, or an easement that is missed or forgotten. 

·      You may own your home and the land around it, but there could be an unknown easement that would restrict or prohibit you from using the property any way you would like to. The utility company or another property owner might have the ability to enter or use the property, right where you would like to build that shed.

·      The property may be new to you, and if it is not brand new, then it could have had several owners. No everyone is a diligent accountant or bill payer. A lien for the debts of a previous seller could be placed on the property after you own it.  The debt may not be yours, but it will be your problem. This is a common problem with distressed properties.

Title issues can cause great financial hardship, and limit the way you can use your new property. Title claims can be very expensive and can even affect the value of your new home. With title insurance you can rest assured that you would not have to deal with these concerns on your own.

The good news is that in the large stack of papers you received at closing, there is an Owner’s title policy, which will cover any title issues that arise after closing. The title company will help defend and pay claims on your title, so you wont have to go it alone.  If you have any questions about title insurance, feel free to contact me directly at 215-519-1399.

Friday, July 17, 2015

Want to stay cool? Then get to the Pool!

Lower Makefield Township Community Pool
1050 Edgewood Road,  Yardley, PA 19067

The pool complex consists of: 4 heated pools, Olympic size 50 meter, 25 meter x 25 yard lap, intermediate pool, tot pool diving boards, dual 18 foot slides one speed, one flume, snack bar, rest/changing Rooms with showers. Membership required.

Oxford Valley Pool
445 Hood Boulevard,  Fairless Hills, PA 19030

Pool opens Weekends and holidays only, May 24-June 22 Noon-7 p.m. June 23-Sept. 1- Open daily Noon- 8:00 p.m. Closed after Labor Day (hrs. of operation may change due to staff availability). Water slide closes before pool and occasionally closes due to classes or programs. Pool closes during swim meets.

Brookside Swim and Tennis Club
499 Stony Hill Road in Yardley/Lower Makefield 

Brookside offers a unique swim lesson program focused on pool safety and familiarizing our youth in an aquatic environment. Each Class will reflect American Red Cross appropriate skill level. In addition, new this year, we will be offering stroke and turn proficiency for the level 6 swimmers who already participate on swim team but want to develop maximum efficiency.

The Village 2 Swim & Tennis Club
2 Rittenhouse Circle, New Hope, PA 18938

Village 2 Swim & Tennis Club offers six sparkling clean swimming pools:
  • 6-lane, 25-meter lap pool
  • Deep-water diving pool with three diving boards
  • Sports pool
  • Secluded lounging pool
  • Upper deck pool
  • Children's pool with fountains
The children's pool is a great place for small children to enjoy the water, while parents relax around the pool or on nearby lounges. And it's only steps away from the locker and bathroom facilities.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Celebrate Father's Day in Yardley

Delaware Canal Festival – Morrisville       June 20, 2015

Sponsoring Partner: Landmark Towns of Bucks County
Event Location: The Delaware Canal by the Actors’ NET Theatre
635 North Delmorr Avenue (Route 32), Morrisville, PA 19067
Phone:215-781-2605 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM        
Admission: Free

Come out for an afternoon of fun and laughter on the Delaware Canal! Try kayaking on the Canal with boats, paddles, PDFs and instruction provided by the Environmental Education Specialists from the Delaware Canal State Park. Decorate a duck and join the competition. Listen to music by the Bucks County Folk Song Society, visit with neighbors from local community groups, find something to eat and enjoy an art exhibit. Family fun on the water for all. Details on the ducks available at or

Annual Brews & Bites
June 20, 2015
Pennsbury Manor
400 Pennsbury Road, Morrisville, PA 19067
4:00 PM to 8:00 PM
General Admission $40; Designated Driver $10

Enjoy an Evening along the River. Join us along the river on the 43-acre country estate of William Penn and enjoy the tastings of regional craft beer. Wander the grounds and watch 17th Century beer brewing demonstrations, take a walk through the gardens, tour the Manor House, or simply relax along the banks of the Delaware River. Food will be available to purchase. Event will be held rain or shine. No one under 21 will be admitted. Must present valid ID at door. No children/infants, no firearms, no pets are allowed. General admission ticket includes beer and a souvenir tasting mug. A Designated Driver ticket holder will receive a bottle of water. Designated drivers do not receive a tasting mug and are not permitted to sample any beer. Designated drivers must be 21+ and present valid photo ID for entry. Tickets can be purchased online or in person. Ticket sales are limited to 400.

Lunch in  the Vineyard for Dads
June 21, 2015
1853 Wrightstown Road, Washington Crossing, PA 18977
Phone:215-493-6500,    ext. 19
12:00 PM  Admission: $55 + tax  (gratuity not included)

Forget the bad ties and boring gift cards. Treat your #1 Dad to a lunch, wine and fun at the vineyard. Includes a hearty lunch between the vines, choice of wine flight (white, red or sweet) and tour of the winery. Reservations necessary.

Tudor House
1858 Street Road
Bensalem, PA  19020
Phone:(215) 244-9777 • Fax: (215) 244-9737

A Fathers Day Dinner “Man Menu” is available Sunday June 21, 2015. This is Dad’s day tonfeel like a King.  Celebrate Dad’s special day with dinner at Fisher’s! We are open from 1 pm to 7 pm, and reservations are strongly encouraged. Large parties are welcome! Reservations can be made by phone at 215-244-9777.
Fisher’s is a polished casual restaurant.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Repair Your Credit

Technology in Real Estate has come a long way in the last twenty years. From listing logs to Zillow, from deed registry to online records searches, from coffee shops and business cards to CRM’s mortgages, taxes, and insurance. The list goes on for all the different effects technology has had.

What about your credit? Has technology had an effect? People are more visible with social media and more likely to share things like fitness, career changes, and relationship issues. But what about credit, would you share your credit score on social media?  A survey from the National Association of Credit Counseling indicates that you would be more embarrassed to admit your credit score (30%) than your weight (12%).

If you suspect your credit score is not very good, then what can you do? That is one of the most common questions that I get asked. Before you can begin, you must obtain a copy of your credit report. Then you should consider the following:

1.     Minimize negative effects – You have to understand that your credit score is affected by the different actions you take in your daily life. The least impact is maxing out your credit card and the most would be declaring bankruptcy followed by a foreclosure. Consider your options, when making important financial decisions and make sure you choose actions that will not affect your credit score first.
2.     Check your collection accounts – these accounts are frequently bought and sold and the most updated information may not be reported regularly to the credit bureau. Check these accounts for accuracy, dispute any and all errors, and be aware when a balance is showing up more than once. Fixing these errors can have a major impact, and it will require patience and diligence on your part.
3.     Check and update your public records – these records can have a very negative effect on your credit score. Verify the accuracy and challenge or protest any inaccuracies. These records are not maintained as frequently and there may be outdate information that needs to be removed.
4.     Negotiate – If there are outstanding balances in collections, then call the account representative and try and negotiate a settlement. Remember that in order for this to work you must pay, and they must remove the blemish from the reporting agencies. Keep in mind that the agreement must work for you and you must have assurances that the information is corrected on your credit report.

Finally, you will want to make sure that you check the limits on your credit accounts and make sure they are accurate. The longer you wait, the harder it will be. Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to tell all your friends that you have excellent credit? What are you waiting for? Get started now!

Martin Millner