Real Estate Tips

Real Estate Tips

This Philadelphia Farmhouse Is a Historic Stunner

Take a stone farmhouse from 1810, mix it with the best furnishings you can find at flea markets in Paris, and the result is this exquisitely renovated Colonial home outside Philadelphia.

A walk-in fireplace graces the living room, while the formal dining room boasts French doors that open onto a screened porch. For a cozier ambiance, the library of this 4-bedroom, 3,800-square-foot home features a fireplace and picture-window views.

A beautifully upholstered floating wall was installed in one bedroom to allow a lake view while lounging in bed. A chandelier hangs above the bed, and behind it is a sitting room.

 

Owners Michele and Michael Friezo also remade the nearly 8-acre grounds, adding formal and informal gardens. They planted more than 300 types of flowers in a meadow with a fire pit that overlooks a private lake.

The pleasure of watching the sun on autumn evenings is rivaled only by watching the snow fall while sitting by a roaring fire in the barn, Michele Friezo said.

The couple also renovated the estate’s crumbling horse barn, which is a rustic version of the main home. Concerned that adding insulation would take away the barn-like appearance of the structure’s interior, they bought a second barn and installed it inside the first one.

The barn’s massive French windows face the meadow and the lake, offering front-row seats to the nesting of two bald eagles who live in a nearby grove of pine trees.

The estate sold for $2.575 million with Caryn Black of Kurfiss Sotheby’s International Realty.

Photos by Juan Vidal Photography.

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Originally published December 2016.
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Real Estate Tips

1800s Estate Proves History Is Anything But Drab

Steven Favreau is the type to go big – and go home.

When he set out to put down roots near his hometown of Boston, Favreau fell in love with an old country estate in quaint Chelsea, Vermont. It was the perfect place for this interior designer to escape from the hubbub of big city life after working with celebrity clients and more.

“It was a quintessential Vermont house in a quintessential Vermont town,” said Favreau, about spotting the house in 2012. “I hopped on a plane and bought it the next week.”

Built in 1832, the house was once owned by a man named Aaron Davis, whose family lived in it for at least 100 years. Davis’ granddaughter eventually sold the 23-acre property in the 1980s, and the new owner converted it into a bed-and-breakfast. (There’s still a portrait of Davis above one of the home’s five fireplaces.)

After Favreau purchased the 5-bed, 5-bath home, he sought to restore it to its original grandeur – at a frenetic pace. A contractor brought in a crew to rework everything from the wiring (it was a fire waiting to happen) to the wallpaper (there were eight layers throughout the house). The workers even put in a massive new beam to support the house and keep it from sinking.

Up next on the designer’s list: keeping the look, feel and integrity of the antique touches, while updating the space to accommodate today’s trends. He tore out a downstairs wall to expand the kitchen to 700 square feet; the master suite got a modern bath with a soaking tub.

Favreau painted walls in his signature bright colors and added bold wallpaper. He lined the master bathroom with tree-print wallpaper. The dining room got a splash of flamingo pink with a print of Victorian-looking cake plates – a nod to the era in which the house was built.

“What I wanted to use for inspiration was the house and the period of the house, so nodding to the period and updating it with a contemporary aesthetic,” Favreau said. “It says today, but it also says yesterday.”

Some things are distinctly New England. A wooden footbridge connects the main property to 22 secluded acres on the other side of the White River. On warm summer nights, Favreau’s family will pull a dining room table out onto the bridge and dine alfresco.

In the winter, the adjacent land allows for snowshoeing or cross-country skiing.

There’s also an old wood barn, which Favreau envisions becoming an event space for weddings or storage. The possibilities for the next owner are limitless, he said.

“It’s a big glorious house, and my family is a big glorious family. We’ve enjoyed it,” he added. “I feel like I’ve loved my time being there and up in Vermont, but it’s time to find the next one. Maybe an oceanside property.”

The home is on the market for $695,000. Zoe Hathorn Washburn of Snyder Donegan carries the listing.

Interior photos courtesy of Jim Mauchly of Mountain Graphics Photography. Exterior photos courtesy of Andrew Holson with Snyder Donegan Real Estate Group.

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Originally published September 2017.
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Real Estate Tips

This Historic Connecticut Home Once Hosted a Dancing George Washington

Built in 1680 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places, this center hall Colonial home in Old Lyme, Connecticut, is not only a living testament to early American architecture – it’s also got a storied past of its own.

The home once served as a storefront during the Revolutionary War and was largely used as the Peck Tavern throughout the second half of the 18th century and early part of the 19th century.

It’s even rumored that George Washington stopped by to dance in the former ballroom, which is now used as the master bedroom.

The house was also once headquarters for the Old Lyme Guild, an organization started in the 1930s that exhibited and sold arts and crafts.

For a period of time, there were even shops for cabinetmakers, bookbinders, metal workers, potters and weavers out in the barn.

“Can you imagine the conversations that have happened in this house? That’s something I like to think about,” says the homeowner.

In addition to its spectacular history, the home is also architecturally significant. Hand-hewn beamed ceilings and corner posts, original wide-board floors, and rare double-arched paneling that was specific to the Connecticut River Valley in the 18th century are just a few of the unique features in the home.

Updated for modern living (yet still keeping the historical integrity), the home now has geothermal heating and cooling, a modern kitchen and updated bathrooms, and plenty of space for entertaining.

“It’s been a wonderful house to share with friends and family,” says the homeowner.

The home is listed for $1.075 million by William Pitt Sotheby’s International Realty.

Photos courtesy of Peter Harron.

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Originally published July 2018.

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Real Estate Tips

Should You Have A Real Estate Agent When Buying A Home?

If you’re looking to purchase a new home, then you may have considered partnering with a licensed real estate agent. You’re not among the few, considering 88 percent of homebuyers enlist the assistance of an Apopka Realtor. Most builders and buyers find it the best decision to deal with a real estate agent to make the process easier. In fact, it’s typically expected that a buyer have an agent before the purchase of any home.

Purchasing A New Home

Buyers who are looking to make a purchase on newly constructed homes may feel like enlisting a Realtor is unnecessary. New home project sales people are a great resource to help anyone understand the project. However, your Realtor will be able to help you find the best deal whether it is a resale or newly constructed. The builder’s sales person represents the builder’s best interests not the buyer’s! Anyone new to the real estate realm can easily be overwhelmed with options and pricing. Your Realtor will be able to represent you and negotiate with any builder to develop your dream home at a reasonable price.

Let an experienced professional advise you where to look for your new home. They are able to help you find the house you envisioned, while keeping you in price range!

Read the rest of the article here: https://michellechaserealtor.com/should-you-have-a-real-estate-agent-when-buying-a-home/

The post Should You Have A Real Estate Agent When Buying A Home? appeared first on Everyday Articles.

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Real Estate Tips

Dreaming of Warmer Weather? These 7 Sunny Homes Are Under $300K

Whether you’re thinking about a permanent move for milder weather or going the seasonal snowbird route, here are eight affordable homes in the warmest cities in the country, all to inspire your search for warmth.

A bright bungalow in Florida

For sale: $299,900

This Spanish bungalow in West Palm Beach, Florida, has everything you need to escape the cold weather: a vibrant green yard, a brightly colored exterior and a back patio perfect for sipping on a beachy cocktail.

If you ever happen to make it inside, you’ll find hardwood floors throughout, an abundance of natural light from the Florida sunshine and unique details, such as arched windows and a clawfoot tub for soaking.

Photo from Zillow listing.

See more West Palm Beach homes for sale.

Picturesque in the low country

For sale: $284,900

If you’re looking for the definition of a picture-perfect cottage, you might just find a picture of this home in Beaufort, South Carolina.

Besides all the hallmarks of a Southern home – a white picket fence, plantation shutters and brick steps up to the front porch – this home also features an oversized screened-in back porch, ideal for enjoying those low country breezes. When you’re not spending time outside, you can enjoy custom cabinetry and cozy built-in shelves for reading books on a lazy summer day (even in the middle of January).

Photo from Zillow listing.

See more Beaufort homes for sale.

A Spanish revival in the Southwest

For sale: $299,900

This Spanish revival home in Phoenix, Arizona, is likely to make you forget that winter ever existed in the first place. Built in 1925 and considered a contributing historic property, this home has all of the Southwest charm you could ask for: colorful stucco on the exterior, a Spanish tile roof and a vibrant interior.

Photo from Zillow listing.

See more Phoenix homes for sale.

A historic hideaway on the Texas coast

For sale: $289,900

Built in 1886 in Galveston, Texas, this home gives you a sense of history and plenty of character – all within a few blocks of the beach. The home greets you with a double stained-glass door entrance and continues to enchant inside with a grand staircase, wide-plank wood floors and trace ceilings. Other details like a spacious galley kitchen and a master bedroom with a fireplace create a pretty spectacular Gulf Coast getaway.

Photo from Zillow listing.

See more Galveston homes for sale.

A rare Queen Anne in Alabama

For sale: $280,000

This sunny early-20th-century Queen Anne in Mobile, Alabama, is a rare architectural find for the city, and this one has been painstakingly remodeled for life in the 21st.

In addition to a major kitchen renovation – featuring quartz countertops and open shelving – new pine flooring coats the whole house, and all the walls have locally sourced tongue-and-groove paneling that brightens the space. This home also has plenty of spots to curl up and enjoy the Alabama warmth that permeates throughout the winter, including a charming front porch and a bay window that lets in plenty of sunshine.

Photo from Zillow listing.

See more Mobile homes for sale.

A spectacular stucco home in Arizona

For sale: $280,000

This charismatic pueblo-like home in Tucson, Arizona, is optimal for living like it’s summer year-round. A Southwest color scheme greets you in the front of the house, with orange steps, a teal barrier wall and creamy stucco on the home’s exterior. The backyard, however, is really primed for all-year outdoor living with a built-in barbecue and in-ground pool – perfect for those scorching summer days ahead.

Photo from Zillow listing.

See more Tucson homes for sale.

A beachy bungalow

For sale: $279,000

We’d kiss our snow shovel goodbye in a heartbeat for this dreamy beach bungalow in Delray Beach, Florida.

The front walkway and garden – complete with palm trees – is a great place to park your Adirondack chairs for a morning coffee or an evening mai tai. If you ever need to escape the Florida humidity, the home also boasts a custom-built theater system, and it’s just a few minutes away from the nearest beach.

Photo from Zillow listing.

See more Delray Beach homes for sale.

Top photo from Zillow listing.

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Real Estate Tips

Explore a Tiny Tropical Treehouse in Hawaii

No one ever complains about Hawaii.

That’s one reason why Kristie Wolfe bought a piece of land there sight unseen. She went from spotting the overgrown, verdant lot on Craigslist to chatting with the owner to buying a plane ticket to clear the underbrush for building – all in the span of just two days.

“It could’ve gone a lot of awful ways, but I didn’t see it until I had flown here to start building,” Wolfe said. “I had never been to Hawaii, and I knew I wanted to build a treehouse, so I was thinking tropical.”

The vision for the 230-square-foot getaway came from sketches Wolfe drew on restaurant napkins. The Idaho native envisioned a lush, lofted escape with a 4-foot wraparound lanai for endless tropical sunsets and rainforest views.

Making that happen, however, required a lot of hard work – and a chain saw.

“When we arrived, the first step was actually just finding the land. My road was so overgrown that we actually thought the end of the road was down the block,” Wolfe chuckled. “After we actually established where it was, the next step was clearing a path so we could come through.”

Wolfe had good company for the build: She brought her mom along for the adventure. The two had worked hand in hand since Wolfe was a child and her mother flipped houses around town, “before flipping was a thing,” Wolfe joked.

For this undertaking, they wanted to maximize every dime, so they used all their precious luggage space for tools. That forced the duo to wear every article of clothing they brought with them on the plane.

They landed on the Big Island in a sweat.

The budget, on the other hand, was something they could chill out about: $11,000 – cheaper than the price of a new car. With the half-acre lot cleared, Wolfe and her mother got to work, building the main living space 15 feet high up on stilts.

The duo recycled and upcycled everything they purchased. The 1970s vintage fern wallpaper came from Etsy, while the bed was cobbled together from scrap materials.

Wolfe crafted the headboard out of a long shipping tube that originally held the home’s window parts; she then covered it with a grass mat.

The duo built an indoor-outdoor shower with tiles made out of cork. They added air plants for a true tropical vibe.

With sun plentiful in the tropical climate, Wolfe installed solar panels to provide electricity to the home and a rainwater catchment for the toilet and the shower. There’s a copper-colored sink below latticed porthole windows that look out onto the forest.

On the main entry level, she built a hanging bed.

At the last minute, Wolfe also built a pulley so guests have an easy way to hoist their luggage to the main area. (She jokes that the device should have been the first thing she installed, since it would have made construction much easier.)

The entire home took 2 1/2 months to finish.

There’s snorkeling and hiking nearby. The home is also near Hilo and Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, where Wolfe often travels to watch lava flow into the ocean.

“[The lava] looks like the end of the world,” she said. “You can walk within feet of it, and it’s absolutely hypnotizing. It’s kind of like a lava lamp – it looks like that, dropping off the cliff into the ocean, splashing and causing all this steam. It’s one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen.”

Wolfe just bought the lot next door and plans, eventually, to put something there.

“I had built a tiny house, and I wanted to do something different, and a treehouse seemed like a fun, totally unique place,” Wolfe said. “I think everybody has wanted to stay in a treehouse. It just seems to fit a jungle.”

This home is currently available as a short-term rental.

Photos by Erik Hecht.

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Originally published April 2018.

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Real Estate Tips

Get the Look: 3 Ideas for Turning Your Home Into a Winter Haven

What better time to turn your home into a warm and welcoming den than during the chilly winter months? With just a little investment and some ingenuity, you can bring a distinctive winter-friendly look into your home.

Here are three concepts to inspire you – and some tips to get you started.

Look 1: The British study

The vibe

This look is a perfect fit for a snowy winter day. Filled with shelves of leather-bound tomes, tufted chesterfield sofas and focused lighting from brass sconces, the study is the perfect spot to curl up with a favorite novel, enjoy a cup of tea or nap away the afternoon.

Get the look

Built-in bookcases may run up a tab, but two or three flat-pack units arranged tightly in a row can nearly fill a wall without breaking the budget.

Pack them with as many books you can find – the fuller the better. Check out garage sales, thrift shops and library clearance sales for additional hardback books if you’re short.

Sure, you may not have a tufted leather sofa on hand, but any love seat positioned in front of the bookcases will look dramatic. Instead of square throw pillows, try round bolsters in the corners for a more formal style.

A vintage rug is ideal underneath, but convincing reproductions can be found online for a fraction of the price.

For the coziest of lighting in the evenings, add sconces to your bookcases. Inexpensive clip-on downlights work perfectly in a pinch. If possible, flank the love seat with a pair of floor reading lamps, swiveled low over the arms of the sofa.

Look 2: The Scandinavian chalet

The vibe

Crisp white paint, whitewashed wood and neutral furnishings make even the gloomiest of days feel bright.

This aesthetic is definitely modern, yet it’s touched with woodsy rusticity and directly connected to nature. Winter-friendly accessories bring in a bit more comfort and prevent the space from feeling cold.

Get the look

Compatible with the popular all-white color scheme, the Scandinavian chalet look can be achieved with a few tweaks – some more involved than others.

For an amazing yet affordable chalet transformation, consider covering one wall (ideally around a fireplace) in inexpensive pine boards. You can run them horizontally or vertically, and you may choose to either paint them to match your other walls or seal them with a whitewash or light gray stain.

Embrace irregularities and small gaps between the boards – they’ll give you the modern, woodsy touch that makes these spaces memorable.

Define a seating area using a generously scaled jute rug. Build on this surface’s natural color and texture with pieces of upholstery. If your furniture isn’t neutral, try slipcovering it or even tossing a large canvas dropcloth over it.

A stack of substantial floor pillows encourages a more relaxed gathering beside the fire or around a board game. And a faux sheepskin throw or two will further warm the space.

For accessories, try hanging a white papier-mache deer mount over your hearth and stacking paper birch logs beside the fireplace.

For lighting, overscale paper lanterns affixed to a simple plug-in pendant light make a big 1970s Scandinavian statement at minimal cost.

Look 3: The boho nest

The vibe

Longing for the warm colors of summer? This look brings them indoors using tapestries, artwork and an abundance of houseplants.

Layering is the name of the game, with floors covered by an arrangement of inexpensive flat-weave rugs, upholstery draped in throws and embroidered pillows, and groupings of mixed-media art on the walls.

Get the look

While many seeking the boho style focus on white walls as a backdrop, you can create a warmer space with a bold color or dark earth tone. Paint one or more of your living room walls to invite contrast.

Start building your nest from the floor up. Instead of purchasing one large expensive rug, try layering a mixture of smaller and more affordable rugs of varying styles and colors for an eclectic and relaxed feel.

If you have walls that feel a little barren, consider draping them with floor-to-ceiling curtains. This will envelop and soften the edges of the room.

If premade ones aren’t in the budget, you can easily make your own perfectly fitted drapes with fabric. Create a simple hem around the edges with a quick pass through the sewing machine or a little bit of ironing with hem tape. Use ring clips to attach the fabric panels to curtain rods.

A gallery wall can also give your living room a warmer feel. While typical galleries consisting solely of framed art tend to be the decorating norm, you can keep the look fresh and more bohemian by integrating a broader spectrum of art types.

Hang clay or wood pieces, textile art, paper sculptures and even wall-clinging plants – like staghorn ferns – to give your gallery wall life and personality.

Related:

Originally published January 2018.

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Real Estate Tips

Why You Should Consider Buying Over Renting

There are a lot of situations in which renting might be the best option for you and your family. Renting can be great if you are unsure you want to settle down in a particular area or you enjoy relinquishing the responsibility of maintenance. However, if you have the opportunity to consider buying and owning a home, it could yield many benefits for your future!

Read More Real Estate Tips Here: https://michellechaserealtor.com/

The post Why You Should Consider Buying Over Renting appeared first on Everyday Articles.

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Real Estate Tips

2019 Design Forecast: What’s In, What’s Out

As we flip to the last pages of our 2018 calendar, it’s time to look at interior design trends on the rise – and say goodbye to those on their way out in 2019.

Here are our predictions about what’s in and what’s out in the year to come.

What’s in

Warm modernism

It’s official – many regions throughout the U.S. are choosing a modern aesthetic over a rustic style.

While black-and-white contrast and raw materials like steel and wood will continue to be popular, they’ll be softened by color and asymmetry. These modern elements will have a fresh approachability when surrounded by sun-soaked fabrics and natural wallcoverings.

Effortless technology and transformations

Talk-to-me tech products help you get things done with your voice, and homeowners are using them to modernize their daily routine.

In 2019 you’ll see smart faucets, fans, window coverings and appliances paired with popular platforms – Google Home, Amazon Alexa and Apple HomePod – for a convenient, connected home.

Additionally, products that offer easy installation and seamless integration into existing layouts make projects remodel-friendly. Innovative sinks, faucets, medicine cabinets, appliances and lighting provide a quick transformation to refresh the style and functionality of your space.

Om sweet home

Though talk-to-me tech is trending, some will be looking for ways to escape the chatter.

Meditative and sound-barrier features will appear in more homes this year – think transformative experiences using acoustic panels, colored lights and aura effects. Ethereal, sheer and translucent fabrics will support the aesthetic, pairing an organic feel with the benefits and convenience of select technology.

Industrial style

Concrete, quartz and metal lovers, rejoice! Industrial styles are predicted to rise in popularity in 2019.

Matte black and bronze continue to dominate and complement a more industrial vibe. But when selecting wall colors, appliances, faucet finishes and fabrics, consider the possibilities of moody blues and the gray color spectrum. From warm light grays to the coolness of matte black, these tones add a subtle layer of intrigue and distinction.

Plus, black and charcoal gray front doors could earn up to $6,271 more when selling your home!

Organic maker accents

Handmade details can immediately soften an interior. This year you’ll see rhythmic patterns and imperfect lines incorporated through hand-painting, stitching and detailing, expanding the possibilities for endless mixing and matching in the home. Additionally, fabrics and accents with strands of crystal, wooden and pearlescent beads present a sophisticated flair for artful detail.

Home decor favorites will still include earthy elements and nubby textures. Think neutral naturals by simply adding a wooden side table and sculpture, live and fake plants for color, and natural fibers through rugs and fabrics.

What’s out

Rustic

Is America finally over the “Fixer Upper” movement? Not quite, but the rustic, farmhouse-chic elements are getting refined.

The shiplap-crazy trend seems to be leaning toward a modern twist, simplifying layers of the look. Cutesy barn doors will take a backseat to more modern versions featuring glass and metal instead of reclaimed barn wood.

The signature statement range hood covered in rustic materials will swing to simplified finishes, like brushed brass, stainless and matte black. Lastly, the harsh light of the Edison bulb will move to a more complementary glow, reflecting concealed bulbs versus exposed ones.

Millennial pink

Bold, trendy color schemes are likely on the way out, with more subtle earth tones and cool, classic palettes on the rise.

Blues and neutrals continue to top Zillow trend reports, adding higher dollar values related to home sales when used in kitchen and bathroom areas. While millennial pink may have been all the rage on designer Instagram feeds, people don’t actually want to live with it throughout their homes.

Whether trends inspire you or not, it’s important to be aware of them, because they help shape our own personal interior style. If you love purple gingham in your dining room, go for it. If an all-white interior speaks to you, celebrate it.

Our homes are where we express ourselves and tell our unique style story, so I encourage you to do just that in the new year.

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Real Estate Tips

Hibernate Luxuriously in This 5,572-Square-Foot Cave Mansion

When most people envision their dream home, they describe large kitchens, beautiful hardwood floors and clawfoot tubs. But not John Hay.

In the mid-1980s, Hay – founder of the Celestial Seasonings Tea Company and great-great grandson of U.S. Secretary of State John Milton Hay – purchased the Beckham Creek Cave in Parthenon, Arkansas. He had plans to transform it into a 10,000-square-foot bomb shelter, consisting of cinder-block walls, plywood flooring, 11 coats of clear epoxy on the natural formations of the cave, and an internal freshwater spring.

He stocked it with enough freeze-dried food to keep 50 people fed for up to two years, and he twice had his religious group sit out bomb scares in the cave. By 1987, Hay realized the end of the world wasn’t coming quite so soon. Various records indicate the property was sold to a man known simply as “Mr. Richardson,” who had a different dream in mind when he came into possession of the property.

Soon after turning the space into a $6 million clubbing venue, Mr. Richardson held a grand unveiling that welcomed over 250 esteemed guests, including Michael Jackson, Elizabeth Taylor, Diana Ross and many other Hollywood elite.

It’s no wonder that in 1994, John Hay repurchased his now illustrious cave.

In the decades following, several new owners have taken hold of the 257-acre property, each one undoubtedly in awe of the great room’s 40-foot rock ceilings and 2,300 square feet. Stalactites descend from overhead throughout the 5,572-square-foot home, and raw rock has been used wherever possible to maintain the unique character of the space.

Though it’s been renovated several times, the sprawling cave has kept its surprisingly cozy charm intact. Part of the reason the cave’s natural features have been preserved is surely thanks to Hay, who reverently told People magazine in 1988 that the home’s “original architect was God.”

The bad news – every dream home comes with its own downfalls, after all – is that a few of the stalactites drip. However, the whole property is climate-controlled thanks to geothermal units throughout.

The 4-bed, 4-bath cave home will run its next owners somewhere around $2.75 million. And while it doesn’t have those coveted hardwood floors or the clawfoot tub that fantasies are made of, we still consider this incredibly cool residence to be a real gem.

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