Westchester Real Estate and the New Tax Law

The real estate market in Westchester County, home to one of the country’s largest property-tax
burden, has been on a roll. The approval of the tax reform will more likely have an impact on the market since it punishes
residents with even higher costs. The big question is: can the market continue thriving?

Cracks are already forming. The number of closed sales dropped, the second straight quarter. Purchase contracts are down as well. Those might be the first signs that buyers are wavering,
and that prices may need to adjust to reflect the now-higher
costs of owning a home in the well-to-do suburbs.

Right now everyone’s calling their accountant….. yes, we did it too. We found no answers because the IRS has not been able to create the guidelines to implement the new law.  The situation gets more complicated when we include the Co-op corporations since they have very large underlying mortgages, and nobody seems to know how those will be treated when it comes to taxes and the pass-through effect that will end up affecting the home owner’s pockets.

We would be surprised if this doesn’t apply some downward pressure on the higher side of the
market. We could see a period of indecision on both the sellers and buyer’s side. Buyers will be looking for a formula that allows them to afford their home.


In real estate one amenity is king….. LOCATION.  Those of us who love this wonderful county of ours, those who enjoy the proximity to NYC and all the wonderful amenities Westchester County has to offer are going to need to grab our calculators and make sure we run our numbers properly. At the end of the day a change in the tax code is not likely to discourage people from making decisions that are basically lifestyle decisions. People need to live somewhere and more likely we are going to live close to our jobs  and send our children to the wonderful school districts we have. There are going to be adjustments in the market but we don’t know the real impact yet.

At GioHomes we are here to help. To us what really matter is what our client’s needs. How can we maximize their earnings and/minimize their loss? How can we help them transition in a seamless manner.


At GioHomes we make your goal our goal

GioHomes’ Team Celebrating the Holidays

GioHomes Real Estate is a local real estate company founded in 2006 based on a philosophy of customer satisfaction. We believe that success in real estate only comes from understanding the client’s needs and satisfying them. We abandoned the corporate premise of quantity and embraced the concept of quality.

Long gone are the days when the information was in the hands of few. The internet and social media now opens the door to the endless possibilities for buyers and sellers. It has empowered small businesses like GioHomes to step out of the old structure and create a more transparent and efficient market.

Years of experience, training, and ongoing education give us the tools to offer prospective buyers and sellers an alternative in a market that was once dominated by large corporations. GioHomes offers opportunities where buyers and sellers are no longer a number in the chaos of politics and paperwork but rather a voice that demands to be serviced.

Please let us know how we can help you.

GioHomes Real Estate LLC.

914-946-1067 – info@giohomes.com – www.giohomes.com

In the picture Lloyd Mascarenhas, Michael Turner, Annette Zito, Phyllis Marcus (legal counsel), Giovanni Gonzalez and Vivian Chen.


Fun Things to do in Scarsdale for the Whole Family

Boulder Brook Equestrian Center.

Boulder Brook Equestrian Center.

Although Scarsdale is just a short 30-minute train ride from New York City, there is no need to venture out town to go on an outing with the whole family. Consider this as your bucket list of fun things to do with your whole family in Scarsdale. The young and the young-at-heart will definitely have a good time.

  1. Enjoy a well-made pizza pie at Buon Amici Deli. This pizza place in the heart of Scarsdale is a well-loved institution among Scarsdale locals. For sure, the whole family will have a treat biting into delicious Italian take-out.
  2. Make Spanish your first (or your second) language. Adapt a foreign language as your own. In this day and age of globalization, you’ll never know when and where your Spanish skills will come in handy. Little Linguists offers an array of fun Spanish classes for children, so sign them and start them early.
  3. Take a dip at the Scarsdale Municipal Pool Complex. Cool off during the summertime and take a relaxing dip with the whole family at the Scarsdale Municipal Pool Complex. The facility is complete with a snack bar in case you get hungry, and a playground where all the children can romp and socialize.
  4. Get competitive and play sports at Crossway Park. Crossway Park’s open fields are the perfect arena for nice game of tennis and more. After a tiring game, head over to the covered picnic area and enjoy a delectable picnic.
  5. Drop by the Scarsdale High School Carnival. Every year, Scarsdale High School organizes a carnival that’s open to everyone. Invite your family and even friends for a fun day out. Both kids and adult will definitely have a blast trying out all the rides, skill games, and other carnival features.
  6. Take horseback riding lessons at Boulder Brook Equestrian Center. It’s never too late for a person to take horseback riding lessons. For little kids, Boulder Brook offers pony rides that are both safe and fun. You’ll never know – the next great equestrian might be somebody you know.

Scarsdale is full of wonderful opportunities for the whole family. Check out our community profile for more information.


The best hiking trails in Westchester

Westchester County may be known to most people as a hub of arts and culture as well as great food, but outdoor enthusiasts are taking note of the area’s hiking trails. Although you can’t find any towering mountain in Westchester County, these hiking trails will take you to panoramic vistas that will be etched in your mind forever.

Hiking in Westchester1. Mianus River Gorge Preserve

Located in Bedford, the Mianus River Gorge Preserve is great for children and beginners. It’s not so high – it’s just approximately 40 feet above the river, but the height is sufficient to give you splendid views of the Mianus River. In addition to its friendliness to hiking beginners, the Mianus River Gorge Preserve trail is one of the oldest Nature Conservancy preserves in the country.

2. Westmoreland Sanctuary

Described by expert outdoorsmen and outdoorswomen as a secluded spot where you can enjoy the sights and smells of nature, Westmoreland is indeed a sanctuary. The forest, which can rise up to 730 feet, is home to quartz rock outcroppings, stone walls, gushing streams, as well as ponds. This beautiful forest is also located near Mount Kisco.

3. Arthur W. Butler Memorial Sanctuary

Another hiking trail located near Mount Kisco, Butler Sanctuary is actually situated right across the Westmoreland Sanctuary. The climb starts off right of Interstate 684 and can take you up to 753 feet. Bird watchers flock here in the autumn in hopes of a hawk sighting, which is frequent about 750 feet from the trailhead. Butler Sanctuary also hides a gem – a swampland in the lower part of the trail that looks like it came straight out of the pages of Alice in Wonderland.

4. Ward Pound Ridge Reservation

Recognized as one of the best parks in Westchester County, the Ward Pound Ridge Reservation features the five-mile Star Loop, which can go up to 860 feet. Broad and well-maintained by dedicated park ranges, this trail offers scenic vistas of the Cross River Reservoir and numerous wildlife sightings. To top it all off, the trail will also pass by the cave of the Leatherman, a popular 19th-century figure in Westchester lore.

5. Anthony’s Nose

Supposedly named after a pre-Revolutionary War captain that can river Cyrano de Bergerac’s famous sniffer, the Anthony’s Nose trail begins off Route 6 and will take you up to 900 feet, where you can catch your breath and take in the gorgeous views of the Hudson River and the Bear Mountain Bridge. The trail is also part of the famous Appalachian Trail.

Hiking alone or with friends and family is great, but hiking with dogs is also a memorable adventure. Check out this page for information on dog-friendly hiking trails in Westchester County


Fun summer events and activities in Westchester

Every summer, Westchester locals and visitors from neighboring communities take part in a wide variety of activities and events that make the season more memorable.

Want to know what fun events are in store for Westchester residents this summer? Here’s a short list of activities and events we’re all excited to experience:

Blue Door Art Center’s Putting It All Together

Drop by the Blue Door Art Center in Yonkers for “Putting It All Together,” an exhibition featuring collages and assemblage work created by over 50 talented artists from the tri-state area. The event is open to the public, and admission is free. Putting it All Together will run from June 18 up to July 23, 2016.

Kykuit Tours

Although Kykuit Tours are available throughout the year, many say the best time to enjoy them is during the summer, when the gardens of Rockefeller Estate are more verdant and the view of the Hudson River is simply spectacular. The best type of tour is the “Selected Highlights” tour, which gives visitors more time to explore the estate’s lush gardens. You’ll also be able to see the secret grotto, the Italian garden, and the Rockefeller family’s impressive collection of contemporary sculptures.

Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival

Photo courtesy of http://hvshakespeare.org/

Photo courtesy of http://hvshakespeare.org/

This year’s Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival features plays such as The 39 Steps, Love’s Labour’s Lost, and Romeo and Juliet. Longtime attendees of the festival will personally tell you that every play during this event is top-notch, with spectacular performances from each member of the company. The festival is also a great opportunity to enjoy a nice, alfresco dinner on the grounds of the gorgeous Boscobel, which boasts unforgettable views of the Hudson River.

Looking for more incredible activities in Westchester County? Take a look at this page.



Elmsford NY Real Estate and Homes for Sale

The Village of Elmsford is located in the town of Greenburgh in Westchester County. It has a total land area of 1.1 square miles and an estimated population of 4,780 according to the 2013 estimates from the US Census Bureau. Elmsford is traversed by a road system that connects the village to numerous major highways, including Interstate 287 and Cross Westchester Expressway, making it easily accessible to neighboring communities such as Scarsdale and White Plains.

Brief History of Elmsford

The village was composed mostly of farmland long before it was incorporated as a city in 1910 and its development into a mainly residential community began with the construction of railroads in the area. Elmsford got its name from the massive elm tree that was once one of itsmost prominent landmarks.

Attractions and Landmarks

When in Elmsford, some of the most-visited attractions are the Westchester Broadway Theatre and the Captain Lawrence Brewing Company. Among its most treasured historic landmarks located is the Elmsford Reformed Church and Cemetery. Built in 1793, this two-story wooden frame building with handmade ornaments and frames was used as a venue for religious and community gatherings by members of the Dutch Reformed Church. Thechurch and cemetery is listed under the National Register of Historic Places.

Schools and Recreational Facilities

Elmsford has one public elementary and one public junior/senior high school managed by the Elmsford Union Free School District. The village has one Roman Catholic private school as well called Our Lady of Mount Carmel.

On the east of Elmsford you’ll find Knollwood Country Club, one of the oldest golfing institutions in Westchester. The country club and 18-hole golf course spans over 75 acres and used to be farmland until it was bought by prominent New York attorney Augustus T. Gillender during the 1890s, whose vision to transform it into an upscale private community with its very own country club.

If you’re looking for a place to take the kids, you can head to the children’s playground at Carol Nichols Park where you can also find facilities for basketball, baseball, softball and tennis. Other green spaces in the village include Pocantico Park, West Rumbrook Park and Massaro Park.


Dobbs Ferry

Dobbs Ferry NY Real Estate and Homes for Sale

One of the four river towns located adjacent to the great Hudson River, Dobbs Ferry used to be overlooked by people in favor of chic Irvington or artsy Hastings-on-Hudson. That was then, however, as Dobbs Ferry is now a thriving community that boasts a world-class school district and plenty of open recreational space.

Situated within the limits of the town of Greenburgh, Dobbs Ferry (affectionately known as “Dobbs” by locals) has grown into a lively community that provides its residents with various kinds of opportunities. Dobbs Ferry is a primarily residential community and has many great amenities, excellent education, and plenty of dining options; it’s no wonder why a lot of people have made this their home.

Diverse and Lively

Dobbs Ferry has grown increasingly diverse over the past few years; an attribute that draws more potential homebuyers to the community. Since more and more people are coming to Dobbs Ferry, the neighborhood has undergone several changesto accommodate its residents and visitors better. The waterfront has been upgraded for one and among its most recent improvements area new fishing pier, a playground, and a dock.

Restaurants and shops line Cedar and Main Streets, where you will also find great Victorian and Colonial homes and quite a few homes that are of the mid-century modern persuasion. In Dobbs Ferry, you can also find apartments, condominiums, and even tiny, wood-frame homes.

Academic and Recreational Pursuits

The establishment of the Dobbs Ferry Union Free School in 1998 changed everything for Dobbs Ferry. It’s what drew the sudden influx of people to the small riverside community. What’s so special about it? The local school district is the first among Westchester school districts to join the prestigious Geneva-based International Baccalaureate organization, which offers high school upperclassmen a two-year pre-university course of study.

Residents and visitors can visit Gould Park and Memorial Park during their downtime for some rest and relaxation, while outdoor and fitness lovers often head tothe Old Croton Aqueduct Trail, which runs through Dobbs Ferry.



Ardsley NY Real Estate and Homes for Sale

Despite being totally landlocked, the village of Ardsley is referred to locally as one of Westchester’s river towns (along with the villages of Hastings-on-Hudson, Irvington, and Dobbs Ferry). Located within the town of Greenburgh, Ardsley, at first glance, is a low-key community, but there’s just something about this neighborhood that makes it so popular among homebuyers.

Once called Ashford, the village of Ardsley was originally settled by a branch of the Algonquin nation’s Mohican tribe called the Weckqueskecks. A group of English and Dutch colonizers arrived in the late 17th century and the land then became part of Philipsburg or Philipse Manor, which was owned by thePhilipse family. The land changed hands once again as Frederick Philipse, a royalist, fled to Britain during the Revolution. The 19th century saw progress in Ardsley and the village was finally incorporated in 1896.

Housing Options

Ardsley offers a special kind of comfort to its residents, and the community’s mix of housing options definitely contribute to that signature Ardsley welcome. Within tree-lined neighborhoods as well as the business district, you’ll find condominiums and single-family homes. Small clusters of large and luxurious Colonials still stand in select areas of the neighborhood, while some of these old properties have been split into smaller parcels of land.

A High Performing School District

Perhaps Ardsley’s most attractive draw is its highly rated and top-performing school district. The Ardsley Union Free School District serves approximately 2, 300 students (including those from other municipalities). Ardsley High School’s stellar performance in educating its students has received constant praise and recognition. Special education students are not forgotten and are part of the district’s priorities; 96 percent of special education children are taught by Ardsley’s school district unlike most of the county, which chooses to send their students to Board of Cooperative Services schools.

Recreation options and sport programs are located well within the reach of all neighborhoods. There are lighted playing courts and fields for various sports, as well as a playground, a picnic area, and a skateboard park. Ardsley also supports its local arts community and is part of the Rivertowns Arts Council, which was established with the three other river towns.