vermont real estate

My very special project!

I am so very excited to announce the publication of the first of my husband’s books “Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea” by James Gaffigan, a psychological mystery-thriller.

It has taken me over 5 years, but the day has finally come.  It is available right now on Amazon Kindle, Ibooks, Nook and also Kobo.  Print version will be available 10/25 on Amazon and through the Troy Bookmakers (the publisher).  It will be in the Book Nook in Ludlow by Oct. 29. 

Please keep checking the website: for updated availability.

Below is the Press Release written by the editor and my friend Joe Milliken:

              New York Writer – Playwright Gaffigan’s First Mystery Novel Published, Posthumously

LUDLOW, VT. – The late writer and playwright, James Gaffigan, always had a dream of writing and publishing a book and although he wrote four manuscripts during his life, he never got the opportunity to have them published. However, that dream is now becoming reality as his widow, Irene Gaffigan, a Local Realtor with the Bean Group, is making sure his manuscripts are to see the light of day and become published novels.

Born in New York City in 1939, Mr. Gaffigan grew up in Douglaston Queens, was a graduate of St. Johns University and lived on Charles Street in Greenwich Village, where he launched The Charles Street Newsletter. Jim also wrote a play titled The Jar (Jury Assembly Room), produced and directed by his sister, Catherine Gaffigan. After moving to Edison, New Jersey for a time, Jim taught English at a few of the local colleges before retiring to Vermont, where he lived in the resort town of Ludlow the last decade of his life. 

The first of Gaffigan’s four manuscripts to be published is titled Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea, a psychological mystery-thriller based on Long Island, New York and in Echo Pass, Colorado – a half-built resort community that is soon-to-become a ghost town if not saved from the clutches of deceit, greed and bankruptcy. The novel is edited by Joe Milliken, a Vermont-based freelance writer, budding novelist and friend of the Gaffigans.

Published by The Troy Bookmakers and set to be released in October, Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea will be available in print at Amazon, Book Nook in Ludlow, VT, Village Square Booksellers, Bellows Falls, VT, Market Block Books, The Book Loft, The Book House of Stuyvesant Plaza and select Vermont bookstores. E-book distribution through will include iBookstore, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Sony, Kobo, Copia, Gardeners, Baker & Taylor and eBookPie. The book will also be available through a soon-to-be-launched web site,, as well as a Facebook page dedicated to Mr. Gaffigan’s writing.



Do you think this will catch on?

I just learned about a new gym in Portland, Oregon that has no membership fees. It’s a community-and-sponsor-funded facility that simply asks you to “pay it forward” by completing three random acts of kindness. You can read about it here. 

I thought this was pretty clever and not just because of the business model, but because they’ve figured out a way to connect positive emotions to something that’s good for you, whether it’s working out or giving back.  I’d like to see if this could work in other types of businesses.  Any thoughts?


Bean Group Supports Military Personnel through Real Estate Rebate Program

Bean Group, one of the fastest growing real estate firms in New England and a proud member of Leading Real Estate Companies of the World (LeadingRE), is now providing financial incentives to military personnel buying or selling a home.

As a partner of LeadingRE’s Military on the Move™ program, Bean Group is offering qualified active duty, retired, and wounded service members a cash rebate based on the actual sales price of the home, or credit at closing, in states where allowed by law.

“We’re honored to support our servicemen and women through the Military on the Move program, and look forward to providing them with the attention and support they deserve.” said Michael Bean, CEO of Bean Group.

With more than 300 Realtors and 15 office locations throughout Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont, Bean Group currently serves the following military bases through the Military on the Move program:

Portsmouth Naval Shipyard
Hanscom Air Force Base
Natick Soldier Systems Command
Cape Cod Air Force Base
Cape Cod Air Station

To learn more about Bean Group, or the Military on the Move program contact Sharon Campbell, Director of Relocation at 800.450.7784 ext. 7377 or [email protected].

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Fanatical Training

The idea of a week long company orientation would make most of us yawn.  But Rackspace, a web hosting company in San Antonio, puts one on that is anything but boring. Check it out here.

What do you think… fun or a plain waste of time?

I hope you have a fanatical week!  I’m here if you need anything.


New Goals

As we are starting the New Year 2013, I’ve been thinking about goals.  Every year, millions of people sit down and carefully choose where they want to go in life and how they’re going to get there.

Take Jim Layton, for example.  His list just got a new checkmark, but you’ll never guess what for, even though 649 other people were right there with him.  You can find out here.

As you’re thinking about what you want to accomplish next year, please remember that I’m always honored when someone trusts me to help them achieve an important goal.  If I can help you in any way, please just let me know.


Irene  Gaffigan,  Associate Broker, CRS, e-PRO
Bean Group

Toll Free: (800) 659-1819
Cell: (802) 353-1983
Fax: (802) 779-0152

Visit my blog at:
Follow me on Twitter:

Thank you Vermont and Maine

VSP Sends Troopers to Help in Sandy Recovery Efforts

Waterbury, VT – The Vermont State Police (VSP) will be deploying 11 troopers to New Jersey to provide law enforcement assistance in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. The VSP convoy will leave from the Williston Barracks tomorrow, November 4, 2012 at approximately 9AM for a seven day deployment.

VSP members will join with 15 troopers from the Maine State Police (MSP) to create a New England State Police law enforcement strike team to assist state and local law enforcement agencies. During the deployment, VSP members will work closely with the New Jersey State Police to provide law enforcement support and security teams in the areas of New Jersey affected by the storm. Members will be operating out of the Fort Dix area.


Irene Gaffigan - Southern VT Real Estate

If you are considering listing your home for sale or buying Southern Vermont Real Estate, please give me a call at 802-353-1983 or email me at [email protected]


Irene Gaffigan
Broker, CRS, e-PRO
36 VT Route 30
Bondville, VT 05340
Direct: 802-353-1983
Toll Free: 800-659-1819
Fax: 802-779-0152

Irene Joins the Okemo Valley Regional Chamber of Commerce.

The Chamber welcomed the following  new member in September:

 Irene Gaffigan C/O Bean Group

800 659-1819

Having been a Realtor® in NJ before coming to Vermont, Irene has over 20 years of experience bringing buyers and sellers together. Irene’s key to success begins with people skills and really listening to her clients and customers. Irene lives in the Okemo Valley area, but has gotten to know Southern and Central Vermont and happily services buyers and sellers in these areas, having experience with all types of properties.

Is the Economy Encouraging Home Buying?

There seems to be a shift in several key housing market indicators, according to Fannie Mae’s March 2012 consumer attitudinal National Housing Survey.  More Americans now expect both home rental and home purchase prices to increase over the next year.  In addition, confidence in consumers’ views of their own finances is stabilizing.  Are these trends providing Americans with an increased sense of urgency to buy a home?

73% of Americans now believe it is a good time to buy a home.  This is up from 70% in February.  “Conditions are coming together to encourage people to want to buy homes,” says Doug Duncan, Vice President and Chief Economist of Fannie Mae.  “With an increasing share of consumers expecting higher mortgage rates and home prices over the next 12 months, some may feel that renting is becoming more costly and that homeownership is a more compelling housing choice.”

A number of factors seem to be contributing to Americans’ Expectations:

  • Home prices are expected to increase over the next year.
  • Mortgage rates are expected to go up over the next year.
  • People feel “it is a good time to buy”.
  • Home rental prices are expected to increase over 4% – a significant increase.

There appears to be good news about the economy in general and Americans’ household finances.  There was a rise in confidence in the overall economy this month.  35% of respondents think the economy is on the right track.  A very low (12%) of respondents think their personal financial situation will worsen in the next 12 months.  This is good news for everyone.

For more information, visit

Until next time, Irene

Real Estate Agent – or – Expert Advisor

 Real Estate Agent – or – Expert Advisor

Spring is a great time to look at the business landscape.  My business is Real Estate so naturally, I’m interested in what’s happening in my industry – and the real estate industry is changing.  Anthony Robbins says, “Success leaves clues”.  Well, I am determined to follow those clues and remain successful in this business I love – and navigate this changing environment!

Remember when you used a travel agent to book your vacation?  Or walked into your neighborhood Hardware Store and said hello to the owner by name?  How about your local coffee shop?  Okay, I still have a local coffee shop but you see where I’m going.  Expedia, Travelocity and Priceline are your “travel agents”!  There are 2,248 Home Depot big-box format stores that have become your neighborhood Hardware Store.  The same thing that happened in these industries is happening in the real estate industry and it requires all of us to look for the clues to remain successful.  That is good for our industry, good for us and very good for our clients and customers.

A Real Estate sale is more than putting a sign in someone’s front lawn, loading the listing onto the MLS and running an ad.  I was a very early adapter of using the internet to market myself and communicate with others and I continue to use these tools for the common good.  Many traditional real estate agents don’t want to share their best practices, but as an “expert advisor” sharing knowledge and information helps everyone grow.  Sharing best practices, leadership and standards helps build consistency in our industry.  You can be committed to your own success and also to the success of others.

In addition to being committed to sharing and helping others as they help themselves, expert advisors are what their name implies – experts who give good counsel to clients and colleagues alike.  Being an expert doesn’t come easily but being an expert in real estate – understanding people, business, marketing, sales and relationship building is the only true way to create rock-solid and long lasting success.  Expert advisors are 100% committed to doing whatever it takes to get their sellers’ homes the exposure they need to drive up the demand on the home, which will ultimately result in a top-dollar offer.

Expert advisors look to foster strong personal and professional relationships with the agents in their area.  Well-managed relationships help expert advisors collaborate and cooperate with other agents in such a way that they’re able to drive demand up on their listings.  It makes sense that if agents like and want to work with you, more agents will show your listings to potential buyers. 

So I encourage you to find someone who has grown beyond the “traditional” real estate agent role and has become the Expert Advisor.  That person is open to sharing the best and brightest ideas – and has a network of others just like them – and that is good for selling or buying a home.  I will leave you with one last thought:

Compare buying or selling a home with booking a hotel room in Boston.  One decision can be made with a few key-strokes, and one is a significant life decision.  Which one requires an Expert Advisor?

Until next time, Irene

Improvement on the real estate front!

After several months blogging about the Vermont towns that I know and love and after a reminder about how important your own life should be as we enter 2012 – well, it’s time to get back to business!  Let’s talk about real estate.

It will come as no surprise to anyone that it wasn’t a breakout year in 2011 for residential real estate sales.  In my opinion however, there was slight improvement.  While the percentage increase in residential home, condo sales and second home buyers vary from county to county and town to town, the real estate market has been positively affected by the following:

  • Interest rates are at a historic record low.
  • Baby Boomers are nearing retirement and have the ability to snap up high end properties at lower than usual prices.
  • Some people who watch the real estate market feel we won’t see further drops in value.
  • Some buyers who have been on the side-lines for the past several years are ready to re-enter the market.

This does not mean that we will all enjoy easy and quick real estate transactions.  Clients will be cautious, as they should be.  Many home prices remain depressed and are well below their replacement value that it would take to build a new home – which is not necessarily good for builders – but good for qualified home buyers.  There are great buys to be had out there and with interest rates where they are right now, the average person still has a great opportunity to own the “American Dream”. 

Due to the financial hardships that many of the American people have endured in recent history and the country’s Financial Institution’s past lending policies – in my opinion a good credit score and adequate down payment are most important for your future real estate transactions.  There are programs out there for first-time home buyers who qualify so if you are in the market to buy a home, it would be foolish not to look into it now.

I’m happy to live in Vermont in a 4-season resort area.  I believe we will remain a strong second-home market and also a destination supported by our local tourism based partners who continue to focus on that economy and add to their year-round amenities.  If you’ve been thinking about buying property in this area – well, now is the time to do so!

Until next time, Irene

For all your real estate needs in South Central Vermont, contact me at:

[email protected]