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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

  • 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

  • This Week...a Remedial Course in How to Select a Contractor and Get No-nonsense Project Estimates.

    In our Replay today, Tom recaps his kitchen project. Listen in and pick up some design tips. In our Horror Story, a li ... Morestener was able to get a contractor to begin her project immediately. He took an up-front payment. The question: is he coming back? In our Featured segment, Kevin and Ron explain how to make selecting a contractor a step-by-step process that can help you get trouble-free home improvements and avoid horror stories. They also offer invaluable tips on getting comprehensive project estimates that won’t lead to misunderstandings about the price, the payment schedule and what’s included. Don’t miss this fact-packed half-hour. Less

  • Volumetric Building Companies leads the way with modular buildings.

    In our Replay today, Tom talks about his kitchen makeover in the works. Our Horror Story highlights what can happen if ... Moreyou hire a contractor who can begin immediately. OOPS! Eight months later, this project remains unfinished. Our Feature today is about Volumetric Building Companies, a Philadelphia-based organization that is creating a major foothold in the modular construction of multi-family residential buildings, hotels, etc. in Philadelphia, other parts of the U.S., the U.K., and continental Europe. Vaughan Buckley, the CEO of the company, briefed us on modular construction. Volumetric recently built a modular hotel in Manhattan with the modules constructed and shipped from their manufacturing facility in Poland. Volumetric modules ship and stack fully loaded with interior finishings, cabinetry, and furniture that the company also manufactures! Modular construction is catching on in Philadelphia and beyond with major developers and off-shoot hotel brands. Modular construction eliminates a lot of the painstaking steps in classic construction and shortens the time between concept and occupancy. If you have been in Philadelphia, New York, or London lately, you may have seen a Volumetric building without even realizing it. Less

  • We Talk with Paul Prager, the Man Behind a Renaissance in Easton, MD.

    In our Replay today, Jed shares his phase 1 plan for what will be an entire first floor makeover. In the Horror Story, ... Morea listener sees through a roofer scam, and cancels the contract. In our Featured segment, we talk with Paul Prager, the visionary energy sector entrepreneur behind a Renaissance in progress in Easton Maryland on the eastern shore of the Chesapeake Bay. His hospitality company, Bluepoint Hospitality, has graced Federal Street with what anyone who has a taste for fine food and drink could desire. The Weather Gage serves exotic coffees, aromatic teas and a selection of baked goods. The Stewart features single malt scotch, vintage champagne and small plates. The Wardroom is a showcase of artisan products, premium ingredients and top wines from around the world. By day, you can enjoy a gourmet sandwich there. In the evening there’s a pasta bar. The list goes on, capped off by Bas Rouge, a restaurant that surely is among the finest in the U.S. The Prager family is all in on Easton...involved in many philanthropic and cultural pursuits. There are plans to renovate a hotel, and build waterfront homes. Don’t miss this fascinating interview, and learn where Paul Prager plans to start a Renaissance next. Less

  • Here’s what happening in San Diego, Newport Beach, LA, Big Bear and Palm Desert CA Real Estate

    In our Replay today, Kevin gives us a heads-up on contractors who swoop in to make the sale, then turn your project over ... More to subs. In today’s Horror Story, a homeowner is told that stone replacement at a cost of $4,000 is the right fix for a leaky window. Good luck with that! We wrap up our Real Estate RoundUp this week with a look at four markets in California. First we hear from Gabe Mendez. His G Mendez Group, is ranked in the top one percent of all realtors in San Diego County. Next up, Newport Beach with Heather Chadwell. Heather is with Harcourts, the world’s fastest growing real estate company. Then to Danny Gillin with Berkshire Hathaway in Long Beach, who fills us in on value-priced homes in places like Big Bear and Palm Desert two hours east of LA. We complete our California RoundUp with input on LA real estate from Suzi Farajiani, who works out of the LA office of Douglas Eliman, a powerful real estate company with offices in key cities around the country. Less

  • Here’s What’s Happening in Key Real Estate Markets in Maryland and N. Carolina.

    In the Replay today, Kevin gets into a big issue for homeowners...insurance fraud by roofers. Why is it happening? The ... More Horror Story today is about Dave’s frustration with the paver patio project that just won’t end. In this fourth week of our five-week-long Real Estate Round Up, we get local market reports from two accomplished, Maryland realtors...one from the western shore of the Chesapeake Bay, the other from the eastern shore. Wendy Oliver, the number 3 realtor in Coldwell Banker Mid-Atlantic i reports on Annapolis and Anne Arundel County. Chuck Mangold, a principal in the Easton, MD-based firm, Benson & Mangold, covers Talbot County on the eastern shore, with special emphasis on Easton, a town currently undergoing a culinary, cultural and architectural Renaissance. From there, we go south to North Carolina’s Research Triangle to get a sense of that market from Kate Steadman of Choice Residential Real Estate in Raleigh. Less

  • Our Real Estate Round Up continues with local market assessments in NY, PA and FL.

    Our Replay today has Kevin delving into an issue some homeowners are having with roofers who claim to have discovered st ... Moreorm damage in their roof, and that insurance will pay for the repairs. In the Horror Story, Dave shares his frustration with the delays in the construction of his paver patio. In this, the third week of our 5-week series, the Real Estate Round Up, we take the pulse of the real estate market in New York with Joe Bonacci from Corcoran. Joe has been named a top agent nationwide and has closed market-making deals in New York City and the Hudson Valley in upstate New York. Moving to PA, Sandy Smith, the Home and Real Estate Editor of Philadelphia Magazine, provides a snapshot of the market in southeastern PA. Then on to St. Petersburg, near Tampa, where we talk with Jac Smith head of the Jac Smith Group about that hot real estate market. So far in 2022, the Jac Smith Group has had listings and sales ranging from $168,000 to $8,500,000. Less

  • Residential Investment Properties insight on State of that Market – Real Estate Round-Up Part II

    In the Replay today, Dan shares the plan for his house now under construction in the Jersey seaside town of Stone Harbor ... More. In the Horror Story, a new door installation reveals a potentially catastrophic problem....no header! If you have residential investment properties, or are thinking about acquiring one, invest 30 minutes listening to Scott Abernathy. Scott is the most recent past president of the National Association of Residential Property Managers, and head of his on property management firm – PMI Professionals – in Murfreesboro, TN. We’ll be talking with Scott about what he thinks is ahead in the market for residential investment real estate. Less

  • Raw Land: How to Value It. How to Navigate Community Dynamics, etc. - Real Estate Round-Up Part I

    This is the first in our five-week long series, the Real Estate RoundUp. In our Replay, Justin Reif, COO of the Window ... More Works Company in the heart of North Carolina, explains why his company became one of ProVia’s newest dealers. Justin also relates a Horror Story about a door installation (not a ProVia door) by a not-so-careful contractor. In today’s featured Real Estate RoundUp, Bruce Carlisle a veteran broker of raw land in Northern Georgia shares the wisdom of decades of experience, including how to value raw land, how to make community dynamics work for you, how raw land is a building block of communities and other nuggets from his book Top Dollar Dirt. Less