By Anessa V. Cohen

Okay, everybody–the holiday is over; time to get back to work and to the real world once again. Now of course we need at least a week to recuperate from Pesach, whether we were home, on vacation somewhere, or splitting the chag among both sets of in-laws.

The gardeners have been out in full force once again, so there is no question that spring is around the corner, together with all the great stuff that goes with it–beautiful landscaping, green leafy trees and grass, and the endless meandering of geese throughout the neighborhood leaving one and all with their nonstop gifts.

I could definitely do without the geese, but getting into the nicer warm weather and flowers and greenery is for sure a positive we have waited for during this very long winter.

We are also starting to see more homeowners getting into gear with all the renovations and repairs that have been left untended since Sandy. There are fewer PODs to be seen throughout town, as people are finishing up the lion’s share of rebuilding whatever was destroyed in their homes during the storm and getting their lives if not back on track, then well on the way to getting there soon.

Over yom tov, I started to see a lot of missing faces back from their temporary abodes since the storm, back in our midst and making Pesach in their new kitchens and back into the Five Towns groove with us once again. Welcome back, all of you! We missed you! Hopefully those who are still away and have not yet completed their own repair work will be back here in town soon as well.

I just wanted to let you all know that I have a series of appointments set to meet with officials from the various villages and towns to get updated information regarding the new rules and regulations that have been set into force as a result of Sandy.

A lot of changes have gone into effect that will impact many as they rebuild and repair, and I want to get this information and how it is to be implemented to everyone as soon as I get the correct details.

For instance, as many of you may already know, the Village of Cedarhurst has eased the requirement for each house to have a garage. Those with attached garages are being allowed to close them up and incorporate the extra space into living space that can be added to their existing interior home spaces.

There are many additional changes in the works, and rather than going into them in this article, I will wait until I have more information and then pass it on as I receive it.

For those who need more immediate information, please take the time to call the building department within your area to ask about various changes, including the possible waiving of permit fees for additional repairs. Most of the changes seem to be geared to the benefit of the homeowner for a change, and so we should make the most of it. v

Anessa Cohen lives in Cedarhurst and is a licensed real-estate broker and a licensed N.Y.S. mortgage broker with over 20 years of experience, offering full-service residential and commercial real-estate services (Anessa V Cohen Realty) and mortgaging services (First Meridian Mortgage) in the Five Towns and throughout the tri-state area. She can be reached at 516-569-5007 or via her website, Readers are encouraged to send questions or comments to

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