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Your Valuable Home

By: Kevin Kennedy and Ron Melk

Trenton, NJ, USA

After years on the radio, hosts Kevin Kennedy and Ron Melk have flipped the switch to podcasting! Ou... Read More

Episodes

  • The Coolest Neighborhoods in America Series continues with "Bungalow Heaven" in Pasadena, CA

    In our Replay today, dad, John, steps in to help Morgan and Conner take back control of their whole house reno. They to ... Moreld their story in our last previous podcast. In the Horror Story, dad does some detective work and finds many deficiencies in the job the contractor is doing for Morgan and John. In the Feature today, we explore the leafy, magical world of the Landmark district, Bungalow Heaven, with two longtime residents, Carol and Juan. Bungalow Heaven, not far from the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, CA, is a treasure trove of exquisitely preserved Arts and Crafts/Craftsman style homes and Stickley furniture. This might pique your interest in the annual Bungalow Heaven Home Tour coming up this April. Less

  • The Coolest Neighborhoods in America Series continues to the Mid Mod Mecca, Palm Springs

    In our Replay today, a young couple suffers a bad case of contractoritis when the renovation of their recently purchased ... More row home goes off the rails. Kevin lends a hand to get the project back on track. In the Bad Guy Bulletin today, we’re again joined by Mike Bannon of Bucks County Consumer Protection, Weights and Measures who weighs in on a half dozen online scams and the downside of home warranties. In our Featured segment today, the next stop on our tour of The Coolest Neighborhoods in America, the epicenter of mid-century modernism, Palm Springs. This is the location of acclaimed architect Bill Krisel’s iconic neighborhood of Mid Mod homes, Twin Palms. Don’t miss this one. It’s also loaded with images of celebrity desert getaways. Less

  • The Coolest Neighborhoods in America Series Continues with the Log Homes of Medford Lakes, NJ

    In our Replay today, we talk with Pat, a customer of Kevin’s company, VSP, about why he chose ProVia® vinyl replaceme ... Morent windows. Horror Stories often result from contractors either not knowing the basics or simply ignoring them. In this case lack of a proper underlayment resulted in a siding Horror Story. In our “Coolest Neighborhoods in America” feature today, we zoom in on Medford Lakes in the southern New Jersey pine forest. This town was born as a resort but grew into a year-round community. Dozens upon dozens of log homes here have been preserved with a lot of TLC. There’s also a historic log church, log coffee shop, and preserved log municipal building. All of this is situated on a series of pristine lakes... a magical setting! Less

  • Introducing the “Coolest Neighborhoods” Series: 1st- Multiple Mid Mod Neighborhoods Around Philly

    In today’s Replay, Debt talks about the finalization of her kitchen renovation. In the Horror Story today, Kevin inte ... Morercedes (at the homeowner’s request) in a roofing job gone awry. The Coolest Neighborhoods in America is a five-week series ...a must for all YVH listeners who are fascinated by historically significant residential architecture and the way communities celebrate and preserve it. First up, the Mid-Mod neighborhoods around Philadelphia, including Monk Road, where Mid-Mod architecture is mandated, Whitemarsh Village a Mid-Mod community situated on the grounds of what once was one of the most extensive homes in America, and much, much more. Less

  • Get the Jump on 2023 Home Improvement Projects. Start Planning Now!

    In our Replay today, Deb recaps her kitchen and first-floor renovation. Our Horror Story has to do with windows imprope ... Morerly installed — a disaster waiting to happen. Don’t let this happen to you. Listen in as Ron interviews Kevin about why you should start planning now for any large home improvement projects you want to complete by Spring or Summer 2023. An addition, new windows, new siding — these and other projects take time to plan under normal circumstances, However, now, with some lingering supply chain problems, lead time becomes even more critical. Plus, you have decision points like choosing a contractor, selecting materials, and other products, and possibly applying for and securing permits and the related inspections. Don’t miss this helpful aid in project planning. Have a truly Happy New Year! Less

  • Building a Home, or Planning a Major Remodeling? Consider Custom Furniture.

    In the Replay today, Brian walks us through part 2 of his kitchen and bath reno. In the Horror Story today, Kevin comes ... Moreacross an incredibly bad
    HVAC installation. The homeowners heard dripping and found water on their basement floor. Turns out the water was coming from the second
    floor...the improperly installed HVAC system. Look for photos of this OOOPS on this week’s Your Valuable Home Instagram and Facebook
    postings. In our Feature today, superstar pros, Brad Sullivan, head of Cider Press Woodworks, and multiple award-winning interior designer,
    Donna Hoffman team up with ideas for Custom Furniture that makes a statement. If you’re spending liberally for a new home or a major
    renovation, consider investing in custom furniture. A one-of-a-kind dining room table, sideboard, or buffet can complete any look from Mid-century
    modern to Arts and Crafts to Cottage or Farm House. Live Edge also has a place in custom furniture thinking. Hear what Brad and Donna suggest,
    and how they’ve included custom furniture pieces in their own homes. Less

  • Something New from Escape (tiny) Homes: the eEscape all-electric series!

    In the Replay today, Brian fills us in on the progress being made with his kitchen and bath re-do, including an innovati ... Moreve solution to capitalizing on unused space. It’s the third week of the month, so we’re back with the Bad Guy Bulletin. Lots of scams unmasked today. We’re joined by Mike Bannon from Bucks County Consumer Protection, Weight and Measures, and Kim, a listener who recently avoided a combination of email and Facebook scam involving a grant. In our Feature today, we’ve talked with Dan George, head of Escape Homes, about his company’s ingeniously designed small homes that make for affordable vacation homes, guest quarters, or for the enterprising, stylish Airbnb's. The big news now is Escape’s forward-thinking, fully electrified eEscape Series. Hear all about it on Your Valuable Home. Less

  • To CLARFI...some people need help with their finances.

    Mike wraps up his kitchen re-do point-by point. In our Horror Story today. Another contractor installed windows withou ... Moret flashing. No...the caulk didn’t help! CLARIFI is a Philadelphia non-profit that’s been on this mission for 50 years, helping “more than 750,000 families throughout Philadelphia and the surrounding Delaware Valley...achieve financial resilience and positively impact their communities. CLARIFI has a positive impact on moderate to low-income families by counseling them on how to reduce debt, save, improve credit, buy homes. This is a story of hope presented by Steve Gardner from CLARIFI. Less

  • Exploring the Far-Reaching impact of Lyme and Lyme+ with authority, Dr. Steven Phillips.

    In our Replay today, Tish shares her and her husband’s Adventure in Downsizing. Be prepared to take notes and learn f ... Morerom their experience. In the Horror Story today, an “electrician” made Swiss Cheese out of a ceiling to install a few lights. Hard to believe! Our Feature today focuses on a culprit that can change your life: Lyme. Could the chronic condition of a family member or friend be the result of undiagnosed Lyme+ Disease? What is Lyme+? Are most family practice physicians capable of identifying Lyme or Lyme+? Is the average blood test to detect Lyme effective? Is routine antibiotic treatment for Lyme sufficient? What is Bartonella? These and many other questions about insidious Lyme disease are answered by a renowned authority on the subject, Dr. Steven Phillips. Why is Your Valuable Home addressing Lyme? Because many of our listeners, their children, and their pets are at risk for this disease. Less

  • Are You Covered for Named Storms and Identify Theft?

    Our Replay today is all about permits. When do you need them? Why can they sometimes be difficult to get? Our Horror ... MoreStory today is about a not-so-handyman who had difficulty putting up one piece of drywall that fell down the next morning. In our Featured segment today, we talk with Mike Celucci, an Erie Insurance agent about homeowners’ coverage....particularly coverage for weather that seems to be getting increasingly severe across the U.S. For example, if you live in an area where you never gave flood insurance a second thought, what happens in the event of a freak flood? Are you covered for named storms? And given the huge increase in identify theft, are you covered if it happens to you? All questions worth posing to your insurance agent. Less

  • A Sobering Discussion About Electric Vehicles (EVs), Solar and Wind.

    In the Replay, Courtney shares her kitchen expansion reno that gives her downstairs a “now” look. In our Horror Stor ... Morey, we debut The Bad Guy Bulletin, our once-a-month expose’ on shakedowns and scams from home improvement contractors and bad actors who use the phone, email and the post office to bilk you out of your money. Are EVs really the environmentally friendly auto option? We do a deep dive into EV batteries, solar and wind power with Barry and Chris, two listeners and top energy sector executives. How many tons of rare earths does it take to make the batteries for just one EV? How will we dispose of used-up EV batteries? Which countries have the greatest concentrations of rare earths used to make EV batteries? What problem does the addition of solar and wind energy cause in energy generation? You won’t want to miss this sobering, thought - it's a provoking discussion. Less

  • Is Your Home Safe for the Coming Holiday Season and Beyond?

    In our Replay today, Kevin explains the renovations he has planned for his home on the Jersey shore (AKA, the beach), a ... Morefamily room redo, a gas insert, new flooring and ProVia stone. In our Horror Story, we report on a contractor who is remediating stucco in a development, and doing the job wrong. PLUS, this is the first of our once-a-month Bad Guy Bulletins, where we call out the creative ways the bad guys are out to separate you from your hard-earned money. With the holidays and gift shopping on your mind, it’s easy to put a home safety check on the back burner. That’s why in our Feature today, we interview Rebecca Edwards from safewise.com Rebecca has vital information on detecting gas leaks, smoke and CO detectors, residential air quality, and the often-overlooked indoor hazards radon and VOCs. Don’t miss this, and, please, take Rebecca’s advice to heart. Less

  • Team up w/ Bucks County DA’s Office and Consumer Protection So Our Listeners Don’t Get Shaken Down

    In the Replay today, Tom explains why he and his wife decided on ProVia Siding and he admires a siding job well done. I ... Moren the Horror Story, still another contractor claims to be what he’s not on social media. We don’t have to tell you that more bad guys than ever are working overtime to separate you from your hard-earned money. In addition to rip-offs by unscrupulous contractors, email, snail mail, and telephone scams are definitely on the rise and the bad guys are getting bolder every day. Learn about the latest scams. Knowledge is your first line of defense! Less

  • The Contractor Shakedowns Happening in Bucks County, PA Could Happen To You.

    In our Replay today, Christine is lovin’ the fresh, new look of her home created by ProVia Siding, windows and a new P ... MoreroVia door. In our Horror
    Story, a roofer’s subcontractor removed the old step flashing but didn’t replace it. A perfect reason to demand cell phone photos, if you have a
    new roof in your future. Marc Furber from the Bucks County DA’s Office joins us for the Featured segment today to talk about some of the latest
    cases to cross his desk involving contractors. At Your Valuable Home, we cannot overemphasize the importance of due diligence whenever you hire
    a contractor. Check for Worker’s Comp and Liability Insurance. Check for a license. Check years in business and references. Check! Check!
    Check! Less

  • Could This Be a better Way to Rebuild After Natural Disasters?

    In the aftermath of hurricane Ian, our entire podcast today is devoted to a fascinating interview with Illya Azaroff, FA ... MoreIA, an internationally recognized leader in disaster mitigation, resilient planning and design strategies. Illya is the immediate past president of AIA New York, elected to the AIA Board of Directors as a 2023-2025 at-large director, and appointed an AIA COP 27 delegate to attend global talks on climate and disaster risk reduction. COP is a common reference to the United Nations Climate Change Conference. All this in addition to serving as Director of Design and Resilient Strategies at his architectural firm, + Lab, in New York and professor in practice at the New Your City College of Technology. The subject is Illya’s resilient, sustainable design for homes that can withstand 150-mile-per-hour hurricane winds and release water that can cause the walls of a conventionally built house to collapse. This is not theoretical. Illya built such a home in Sandy Hook, Queens, New York to replace one obliterated by Superstorm Sandy, and has since employed his advanced design concepts to construct homes in other parts of the country. This could definitely be the better way to rebuild after natural disasters. Surprisingly, it costs little more than conventional construction. Less

  • Post Ian, The Head of an HOA in Captiva, FL Has His Hands Full.

    In our Replay today Phil, from New Jersey, purchased an adjoining lot with plans to build a B&B. Interesting idea! We ... Moreget his initial thinking and offer some ideas of our own. Then, continuing with our series on the Southwest, Florida barrier islands of Sanibel and Captiva, we speak with Ed, the head of an HOA in Captiva with responsibility for 68 condo units. The focus of the interview: the challenge of shipping workers and materials to Captiva with the causeway from the mainland down and continuing supply chain delays. Aerial photos show that most of the units and related buildings are largely intact. The big questions: water intrusion and mold, which could necessitate extensive interior reconstruction. Less

  • Florida residents cope w/ 1 of the worst natural disasters in history – focus on Sanibel and Captiva

    In our Replay today, a listener is planning an out-side-the-box B&B on his large property in New Jersey. Our Horror Sto ... Morery and Feature are about how Florida residents are coping with their worst nightmare – Ian. We talk with Jack who has a home on Sanibel, We also talk with his daughter-in-law, Bronwyn, who with husband, Mike, moved their permanent home to neighboring Captiva this past August. Both share their perspectives on devastation Ian left behind. Like most Sanibel residents, Jack has yet to return to his home. Bronwyn reached hers via boat. Without water and power infrastructure, repairs and rebuilding will have to wait. Jack is deeply concerned about Florida’s older residents and their financial and emotional ability to re-build, He cited a frightening statistic: only a little over 15 percent of Florida residents have flood insurance. Listen again next week for Ed’s story about Captiva. He’s challenged by the availability of labor and materials to deal with repairs/reconstruction of his own condo and the dozens of other condos that are his responsibility as head of his HOA. For those homes that were not destroyed, mold will be a huge problem. Less

  • This company is cashing in on a booming rental market with build-to-rent projects in Philly

    Our Replay today is about a home improvement project that can aid in planning yours. In the Horror Story, Kevin and his ... More team find potentially dangerous wiring in the wall, while remodeling a kitchen. Lucky homeowner! In our Feature today, Leo Addimando, the CEO of Alterra Property Group, talks about how his company is capitalizing on modular construction to erect multiple build-to-rent buildings in Philadelphia, a booming rental market. Build-to-rent means that the developer owns all of the units in a building with the intention of renting – and in this case – managing them. If you’re a landlord with a few units in your portfolio, you’ll want to hear this. Less

  • Will New Jersey Be Ready for the Next Superstorm?

    In our Replay today, Mike explains the plan for his kitchen and flooring re-do. Our Horror Story is about another job n ... Moreot so well done by a contractor. With the changes New Jersey has made in its Municipal Land Use Law (MLUL) to prepare for climate change events, its aggressive actions to electrify the transportation sector, etc. the state has become ”a leader in responding to climate change.” In the Featured segment today, the noted landscape architect, Carter van Dyke, explains the work he is doing with New Jersey municipalities to develop Hazard Vulnerability Assessments and Resilience and Adoption Strategies, as now required by the state. He also explains the interactive tools the state provides to aid the Assessment and Strategy development required of all municipalities when altering their master plan. New Jersey is working hard to be ready for the next superstorm. Less

  • Learn Which Povisions of the Infrastructure and Inflation Reduction Laws Offer the Broadest Benefits

    In our Replay today, Jed does a final interview about his recent kitchen makeover. This could provide some ideas that wi ... Morell help you plan. In our Horror Story, fellow contractor Mike Martelli, shares the specifics on a home improvement mess created by a guy who was watching How To YouTube videos in his truck. Mike was called in for the do-over. In our Featured segment today, we ask lawyer and environmentalist Dante DiPirro to explain and score major elements of the new Infrastructure law and the climate portion of the Inflation Reduction Law. The scoring system ranges from 1 to 5, with 5 representing the benefits with the broadest impact. Find out how each provision or group of provisions score, and Dante’s overall score for both pieces of legislation. Less