DEAR BENNY: We purchased our home a year ago for $153,000 and put $16,000 cash down. PMI was required. I want to end the PMI as soon as possible and understand that the home equity must reach a certain point (the agent said after two years we could try to get it canceled). Isn't there a law that if we are current with our payments we can opt out of PMI? We purchased a short-sale home and the value has been appraised higher now. Will that work against us? --Phyllis
The highest sale price ever recorded in Manteca for a production home was $720,000.
SACRAMENTO (AP) - California should receive at least $20.6 billion from a settlement with the nation's major mortgage lenders, the largest share of any state and about $2 billion more than expected when the agreement to assist homeowners was announced last year, according to a report released Thursday.
WASHINGTON (AP) - The average U.S. rate on the 30-year fixed mortgage rose this week but remained near historic lows. Low mortgage rates have helped support the slowly recovering housing market.
If you find yourself wondering how you ever got along before your smartphone, laptop and GPS, you're not alone. Technology is so much a part of how we go about our days that we often take it for granted. However, in many cases, houses haven't caught up to the same technological standards as the gadgets people carry with them 24/7. But that's all about to change, as new ideas begin to revolutionize the way we view our homes.
Uncle Sam's failure to practice tough love is creating more foreclosures.
Year after year, no matter the state of the housing market, kitchen remodeling remains a good idea. The project perennially tops lists of value-for-your-money home improvements and almost every buyer will be attracted to a kitchen that's updated and move-in ready. Even if you're planning on staying in your home for a while, few things can reinvigorate your home like a brand new kitchen.
SAN DIEGO (AP) - The number of homes sold in California rose 2.7 percent last month from a year earlier and the median price soared as the housing market showed continuing signs of recovery, the reporting firm DataQuick said Thursday.
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Homeowners who took on mortgages well after the housing bubble burst are doing a better job in keeping up with payments, a trend that has helped push the national rate of late payments on home loans to the lowest level in four years.
DEAR BENNY: I will be soon paying off (in its entirety) the mortgage on my home. For your information, I have been current on my payments throughout the 10-year term. The mortgage company is a credit union, and I intend to continue residing in my home.
Even during a challenging economy, the outdoor living trend remains popular as homeowners seek to add lasting value and functional living space under the sky and stars. Whether it's a do-it-yourself patio or a professionally installed outdoor kitchen, the beauty, usefulness, value and ease of maintenance in outdoor living space is limitless.
DEAR BENNY: I understand that when homebuyers sign closing documents, they are routinely required to sign a blanket form allowing the lender to access IRS records with no time limit. The form says not to sign it unless dates are specified on the form, but lenders routinely insist they be signed without any specification as to which years of IRS records are covered.
WASHINGTON (AP) - U.S. home prices jumped by the most in 6 ½ years in December, spurred by a low supply of available homes and rising demand.
NEW YORK (AP) ‑ Low mortgage rates have made buying a home more affordable and turned rentals into an attractive option for investors.
Winter can seem like an eternity. Yet when it comes to your credit profile, house-hunting and the spring real estate season is just around the corner.
Just as tasteful, well-chosen jewelry can turn an unexciting outfit into a stylish, eye-catching ensemble, carefully applied hardwood mouldings and trimwork can transform a plain-Jane interior into an interesting - even beautiful - space.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Average long-term U.S. mortgage rates rose this week yet remained near historic lows reached in May 2013.
DANVILLE, Va. (AP) - They were offered in a catalogue - and shipped in a kit - via railroad a century ago.
In the midst of the winter we love to think of the summer as this idyllic time when we live barefoot under the sky and everything is perfect and beautiful. Then when the summertime comes, we find ourselves complaining about too much sun, being too hot or bugs - and stay inside in the cool AC to avoid them. The good news is you can create a cool, shady and even bug-free spot for yourself, no matter the size of your outdoor space or your wallet.
NEW CANAAN, Conn. (AP) - In the years after World War II, when suburban towns were still "the country," this unassuming village an hour north of Manhattan became an epicenter of modernist architecture, and a birthplace of then-radical concepts like family rooms, floor-to-ceiling windows and open-plan living.
STOCKHOLM (AP) - Lost that charger again for your cellphone or tablet? Hate sorting heaps of wires to charge various devices?
TULSA, Okla. (AP) - Millennials' much-discussed preference for urban living may be ending.
Busy has become a way of life. Between work, household chores, time with family and friends, people often don't have time to complete that entire wish list of home updates. Luckily, there are several simple kitchen and bath projects that you can conquer in minimal time that deliver maximum style and functional impact. In fact, here are a few projects that can be completed in about an hour or less.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Average long-term mortgage rates have fallen for the first time in four weeks and remain near historic lows reached in May 2013.
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.
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.
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.
Want to infuse your home with architectural interest? Start at the top.
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.
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.