Archive for December, 2015



TRID, a set of regulations that came into effect in October is impacting the lending industry.  Most of the changes are embodied in two disclosure forms, THE LOAN ESTIMATE FORM & THE CLOSING DISCLOSURE FORM.

The new disclosure forms are designed to improve disclosures to consumers and also contain tolerance limitations that may cause lenders to refund fees to consumers when certain costs vary between the initial and final disclosure.

Borrowers must receive the new closing disclosure at least 3 business days before they close on the loan. The final Closing Disclosure must list all the actual costs of obtaining the mortgage.






West Orange Pre-School Fair

PreschoolWest Orange Pre-School Fair on 1/21 at 6:30-8 pm at the West Orange Public Library, 46 Mt. Pleasant Avenue. Come learn about preschool and day-care options in our town! Free and open to the public! We will have multiple preschools and day-cares there to speak with you about different options. For more information call Playhouse Preschool @ 973-736-9451

SOMA Film Festival in February!



Here comes the SOMA Film Festival, a new three day experience being held February 12-14, 2016 at the South Orange Performing Arts Center (SOPAC).  Weekend passes for the Festival are only $45-$55 and are on-sale now at Long & short form narrative and documentary will be shown and an opening reception is to take place Friday, February 12 where audiences will be able to mingle with their fellow film-lovers, as well as film industry professionals. The fest is sponsored by Barnabas Health.

Festival Founder, Maplewood resident, Matthew Smollon, knows there are many entertainment professionals in Maplewood and South Orange so it seemed like an ideal place, given its proximity to New York City, and its rich cultural tradition. “Creating a film festival seemed like an organic next step for these communities” said SOMA Festival Founder, and Maplewood resident Matthew Smollon. “I am confident in the quality of innovative and exciting independent films that will be shown, and that our first year will prove successful and become a long standing tradition for years to come.”

Smollon assembled an advisory committee of actor John Michael Higgins, writer/director Steven Kampmann, President of Grasshopper Films Ryan Krivoshey, documentary filmmaker Ben Niles, actress Christianne Noll and NY Latino Film Festival Director Elizabeth Gardner Potter.  They have helped to shape the Film Festival in its inaugural year and evaluate submissions, and the final list of selected films will be available in January.  Smollon is creating many exciting opportunities during the course of the Festival for discussion between film artists and audiences.

The films will be screened in the intimate 438 seat-theatre at SOPAC, noted for both its excellent sound design and comfortable, welcoming atmosphere.  Tickets are on sale now and can be purchased at or by calling (973) 313-2787. More information is available at The Festival is still taking submissions and filmmakers should visit for further information.



Maplewood Post Office Update

Maplewood Perspectives_2015-05-06_reduced_Page_1The site plan of the former Post Office of Maplewood is finally approved for development by Maplewood Redevelopers, LLC.  A mixed-use, 20-unit residential and retail building at the site will be constructed.

The planning board recently voted 9-0 in favor and last month the township closed on the sale of the property.

Issues resolved included:

  1. Facade Setback – there will be a straight vertical building as pictured
  2. Garage Opening – width settled
  3. Parking Stalls on North & South Side – widths settled

There will be a transfer of the 5-year tax abatement agreement (PILOT) from the original developer, Maplewood Redevelopers, LLC, a division of JMF Properties, to two new entities: JMF Maplewood LLC and Gladstone of Maplewood LLC.

Mara’s supports Musicians


Mara’s Steps Up!