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Archive By Section - HOME SCENE


Rate on 30-year mortgage falls to 3.98%

WASHINGTON (AP) - The average U.S. rate on the 30-year fixed mortgage was mostly unchanged this week, as the cost of home-buying and refinancing stayed near record lows.

April 05, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Bold and beautiful define this season's outdoor decor trends

When warm weather arrives, Mother Nature becomes a shameless show-off. From clear, bright skies to lush green grass and vibrant blooms, the outdoors go bold and beautiful. So is it any surprise that this season's outdoor decor is following suit?

April 05, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


New real estate reality: To buy or not to buy?

Generations of Americans have considered owning their own home a key aspect of achieving the American Dream. But the lingering aftermath of the Great Recession has caused many people to rethink that belief. Rental occupancies are rising as more Americans opt to lease their homes, rather than buy.

April 05, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Purchase applications for home loans up 3.3%

The housing market continues to bounce around at what many experts believe is the bottom. In recent weeks I have written about how many of the housing reports have indicated a slowly strengthening real estate market. I don't believe that trend is changing however in the last week we have seen the New Home Sales report as well as the Pending Home Sales report come in weaker than expected. With the employment picture steadily improving, it is a little bit confusing as to why the housing market is unable to gain much traction towards improvement.

April 05, 2012 | By DEBORAH ROMERO Special to the Bulletin | HOME SCENE


Growing own produce growing trend

Who would have thought getting dirt under your fingernails would ever be considered one of the hottest trends going? According to Doug Jimerson, garden core director for Better Homes and Gardens, "growing your own fruits, veggies and herbs is something Americans are doing in record numbers this season."

April 05, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Spouse's death can hurt refi chances

DEAR BENNY: I enjoy reading your articles and I have a question of my own. My wife passed away three years ago and I recently remarried. I plan to retire this year and want to refinance my home. The house is in both my deceased wife's name and mine. What complications will I run into when I do this? --Harold

April 05, 2012 | By BENNY L. KASS Inman News | HOME SCENE


How to identify your personal design and make it come to life

You've made the decision to remodel your home. The budget range and project scope have been set. You've even preemptively told your sister-in-law she'll need to host Christmas (alright, that was before you knew you were going to remodel). Now what?

April 05, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


BofA tests alternative to foreclosing homes

Banks may finally be getting it.

March 29, 2012 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


Create a tropic escape in your own backyard

Yearning to escape to a tropical paradise? This spring, look no further than your own backyard to capture the romance of the tropics and create a sense of optimism to lift your spirits.

March 29, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Searching shadows for end to foreclosure crisis

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (AP) - When Frank Verna pulls up to a battered, four-unit apartment building at lunch hour, he's just over a mile as the seagull flies from the gated oceanfront palaces of South Florida's wealthiest.

March 29, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Home prices fell in January in most cities

WASHINGTON (AP) - Home prices fell in January for a fifth straight month in most major U.S. cities, as modest sales increases have yet to boost prices.

March 29, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Home prices fell in January in most cities

WASHINGTON (AP) - Home prices fell in January for a fifth straight month in most major U.S. cities, as modest sales increases have yet to boost prices.

March 29, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Study: Making car payment takes priority over paying the mortgage

NEW YORK (AP) - The recession and its hangover may have turned bill-paying habits upside down. Cash-strapped Americans are paying off their car loans before they pay credit card bills and make mortgage payments, a study finds.

March 29, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Must giftee pay IRS when property is later sold?

DEAR BENNY: In April 2001, a friend and I purchased a condo in California for $100,000. We are on title as tenants in common. My wife and I own 50 percent, and my friend owns 50 percent.

March 29, 2012 | By BENNY L. KASS Inman News | HOME SCENE


2012 outdoor living trends can easily update your patio or deck

More homeowners want their outdoor space to truly be an extension of their house and are taking steps to create an inviting area to relax, play and host guests. If you want to update your deck or patio for warm weather entertaining, you don't have to spend a lot of time or money. You can easily refresh the items you already have and add new stylish elements by keeping some top trends and design ideas in mind.

March 29, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


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Articles by Section - HOME SCENE


MetLife pays $123.5M in settlement

NEW YORK (AP) - MetLife's home lending unit will pay $123.5 million to end an investigation into allegations it gave government-backed mortgages to people who didn't meet federal requirements.

February 27, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Ideas to easily enhance, organize master closets

So, you've decided to make some updates to your home? Whether you plan on building a home from the ground up, purchasing new construction or adding value to your current residence, there are many opportunities for upgrades.

February 27, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Get inspired by outdoor living ideas for your home

Inspired by neighbors, home improvement shows and social media channels like Pinterest and Houzz, today's homeowners are entering the deck planning and building process more informed than ever before. But sorting through this wealth of information and inspiration can make it hard to decipher what's really hot for today's outdoor spaces – and to choose what's right for your home.

February 27, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


CEILINGS

Want to infuse your home with architectural interest? Start at the top.

February 27, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Signed contracts rise to 18-month high

WASHINGTON (AP) - The number of Americans signing contracts to buy homes rose at a healthy pace in January, a sign that home sales are poised to accelerate after a slow start to the year.

February 27, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Rate on 30-year mortgage rises to 3.8%

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average long-term U.S. mortgage rates have edged up for a third straight week while remaining near their historically low levels reached in May 2013.

February 27, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


New home sales fall slightly during January

WASHINGTON (AP) - Sales of new U.S. homes were basically flat in January, evidence that recent job gains and relatively low mortgage rates have yet to spur the real estate market.

February 27, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Add a signature style to your home

To satisfy homeowners seeking to add a signature style to their indoor living spaces, more and more design professionals and builders are going back to basics and rediscovering the versatility, durability and good looks of cypress.

February 27, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Home sales plunge 4.9 percent in January

WASHINGTON (AP) - U.S. home sales struck a snow drift in January, plunging to the slowest pace in nine months.

February 27, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Energy guzzlers greener

For the first time in six years, Energy Star certification, a standard seal of approval for energy efficiency, has been expanded to include another major household appliance.

February 20, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Tips for replacing water heaters

Some 37 million residential water heaters gave up the ghost and were replaced over the past five years, according to estimates by the U.S. Department of Energy. While some things get better with age, water heaters aren't among them. In fact, the average life expectancy for a new water heater is 10 to 15 years, with the occasional stoic dinosaur making it two decades or more.

February 20, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


A stunning backsplash without the whiplash

The kitchen is the heart of the home and a top-selling feature with homebuyers. Does yours convey style and functionality? Whether you've just completed a remodel or you're looking for ways to upgrade your existing kitchen, a tile backsplash will instantly transform the space into an eye-catching masterpiece.

February 20, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


6 steps to select best remodeling contractor

A remodeling project is one of the most invigorating lifestyle changes a homeowner can make. However, trusting a contractor with both your home and your money can feel overwhelming. Spare your time, money and sanity by following these steps for choosing the best remodeling contractor:

February 20, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Central Valley group names Realtors, Affiliate of the Year

Every year the Central Valley Association of Realtors recognizes members who have gone above and beyond in the real estate profession and community service. This year CVAR named two recipients as Realtor of the Year - Shelly Bell and Larry Rumbeck - and as Affiliate of the Year, the honor goes to Taylor Phillips.

February 20, 2015 | Staff reports | HOME SCENE


Rate on 30-year loans rises to 3.76%

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average long-term U.S. mortgage rates have risen for a second straight week yet remained near historically low levels.

February 20, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


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