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Archive By Section - HOME SCENE


Home prices rise in July by biggest percent in six years

WASHINGTON (AP) - U.S. home prices jumped 3.8 percent in the 12 months ending in July, according to a private real estate data provider. The year-over-year increase was the biggest in six years, further evidence that the housing market is steadily recovering.

September 06, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Slashing perks when condo fees rise

DEAR BENNY: I thought condo fees were for the maintenance and repair of homes and grounds, and for lawn care. Our association fees also pay for parties. I think the people who participate in the parties should pay for the parties themselves. Our condo fees have been raised twice since I moved here six years ago, and they are expected to go up again this coming fiscal year. What can be done to remove the party category from the budget? --R.E.

September 06, 2012 | By BENNY L. KASS Inman News | HOME SCENE


River Islands: Game changer for regional housing market

River Islands at Lathrop with its approval to build 10,800 homes with much of the key infrastructure in place is more than just the proverbial 900-pound gorilla.

August 30, 2012 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


Must-have contingencies in purchase offer

DEAR BENNY: I am in the process of buying an older single-family home and found one I like. I wanted to have my contract contingent on obtaining a favorable home inspection, but my real estate agent has been discouraging me. She claims that I may lose the house if I insist on the inspection. What do you think? --Terrie

August 30, 2012 | By BENNY L. KASS Inman News | HOME SCENE


Resale home prices show consistent 12-month gains

WASHINGTON (AP) - U.S. home prices are finally starting to increase consistently.

August 30, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Average rate on 30-year mortgage falls to 3.59 pct.

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average U.S. rates on fixed mortgages fell this week and are just slightly above record lows reached earlier this year. The low rates have contributed to a modest housing recovery.

August 30, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Report: Foreclosure sales fell sharply in second quarter

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Sales of bank-owned homes and those already on the foreclosure path fell sharply in the second quarter, reflecting a thinner slate of properties for sale in many cities as banks take a measured approach to placing homes on the market.

August 30, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Contracts to buy homes hit two-year high during July; shortage of homes in the West

WASHINGTON (AP) - Americans signed the most contracts to buy homes in July than at any other point in the last two years, further evidence of a housing recovery.

August 30, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


REFRIGERATOR MAKEOVER

The new school year is upon us and with it comes hectic schedules and harried mornings that make weekdays a mad dash. With school lunches to make, snacks to prepare and evening meals to plan, getting out the door on time can be a challenge. Having the house in order and a few things made ahead of time can be a huge convenience that means a world of difference in those time-crunched minutes.

August 30, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


The shadow inventory & the bogey man

Does the bogey man exist?

August 24, 2012 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


Realtors honor Joaquin, Romero

RIPON - The Central Valley Association of Realtors (CVAR) held their annual awards luncheon on July 25 at Spring Creek Golf & Country Club. Awards were given for "Masters Club" which honors top agents in the area based on sales volume. Also awarded were the Realtor & Affiliate of the Year awards for each respective council of CVAR.

August 23, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Property unsalable until recurring defect is fixed

DEAR BENNY: I am the owner of a house that has flooded repeatedly over the past eight years. It is paid off. I want to pull the equity out of the property and walk away from it. How do I best approach this task? I have considerable cash assets that I do not want to put at risk.

August 23, 2012 | By BENNY L. KASS Inman News | HOME SCENE


New-home sales rise to match 2-year high

WASHINGTON (AP) - Sales of new homes in the United States rose 3.6 percent in July to match a two-year high reached in May, the latest sign of a steady recovery in the housing market.

August 23, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Average on 30-year US mortgage up to 3.66%

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average U.S. rates on fixed mortgages have risen for a fourth straight week, remaining slightly above record lows. Cheap mortgages have helped fuel a modest housing recovery this year.

August 23, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Trulia files for $75 million initial public offering

NEW YORK (AP) - Trulia Inc., which operates the real estate website Trulia.com, on Friday filed for an initial public offering that could raise up to $75 million.

August 23, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


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Articles by Section - HOME SCENE


Rate on mortgage falls to 3.66%

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average long-term U.S. mortgage rates fell for the third straight week, with the benchmark 30-year rate again marking its lowest level since May 2013. The average for a 15-year mortgage, a popular choice for people who are refinancing, dipped below 3 percent for the first time since then.

January 16, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


New coat of paint: Success tips for DIY painting projects

Painting projects are more popular than ever with do-it-yourselfers with 94 percent planning a painting project in 2015, according to a Sherwin-Williams survey of homeowners. DIYers are also planning their painting projects earlier in the year, with January, February and March marked as popular months to upgrade homes with color.

January 09, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Create bathroom retreat

With so much time spent in the bathroom, it is important to give that space a little TLC like the rest of the home. Almost everyone that enters your home sees your bathroom. From changing accessories to a total bath remodel, it is important that it receives a little refreshment. A bathroom should be an oasis, and the environment that it displays directly correlates with just how relaxing it is.

January 09, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


SMARTER HOME

LAS VEGAS (AP) - Technology forecasters are calling 2015 the year of the Internet of Things - that idea that everyday objects will use sensors and Internet connectivity to start thinking and acting for themselves. At the International CES gadget show this week, I explored many of the elements that could lead to a smarter home. Some were intriguing; others disappointing. Are the capabilities on offer worth the expense and hassle? I'm not entirely convinced.

January 09, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


New ideas to improve your home for an enjoyable 2015

The start of a new year usually means one thing: endless resolutions. As you bid farewell to the holidays, it's all about what you want to change, upgrade and do better. Health and well-being are always the first things that come to mind, but don't overlook your home. In fact, sometimes it's the first place to start - from a total overhaul to the simplest design changes. Those major or minor design decisions can really impact not only how you live, but also the health and happiness of you, your family and your home.

January 09, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


5 easy kitchen and bath upgrades that are quick

Do your kitchen and bathrooms look a bit drab? If you don't have the time or budget for a full remodel, there are still many simple updates you can do to refresh these spaces and invigorate each with impressive style. From affordable faucet updates to pretty paints, each takes one day or less to complete, instantly providing a dramatic effect.

January 09, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Lower premiums could save $900 yearly

PHOENIX (AP) - Standing at the epicenter of the nation's recent housing crisis, President Barack Obama on Thursday promoted plans to lower some mortgage insurance premiums, a move the White House says could save homeowners $900 a year and attract 250,000 first-time buyers.

January 09, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Rates hit lowest level in 21 months

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average U.S. mortgage rates started the year by dipping to new lows, with the benchmark 30-year rate marking its lowest level since May 2013.

January 09, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Top 5 real estate trends of 2015

According to the "2014 Housing Review" released by realtor.com , 2014 "demonstrated a steady buildup of housing momentum fueled by significant improvements in economic fundamentals, low mortgage rates and compressed inventory, and is expected to carry the market into 2015 gains."

January 09, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Home prices drifted upward in November

WASHINGTON (AP) - U.S. home values rose at a measured pace in November, a sign that demand remains weak as many buyers have been priced out of the market.

January 09, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


New homebuyers checklist

When you're about to buy a house, it's easy to get excited about its great location, spacious floor plan or beautifully decorated interior. Yet the old saying, "beauty's only skin deep" can apply to any home, especially if you're considering an older, previously owned property. Before signing on the dotted line, use this checklist to help avoid some potentially costly surprises and anticipate repairs or upgrades that may be needed.

January 09, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Timeless interior design protects your investment

Kitchens are the heart of the home. It's where you prepare meals, help your kids with homework and entertain guests. It's the room in the house where everyone gathers, where memories are made, and, with solid investment, can single-handedly increase the value of your home and help you build more of a nest egg. Even if you're considering selling your home, all eyes of prospective buyers will inevitably be on the kitchen.

January 02, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Hot home decor color trends make statement

It's a strategy interior designers often use to create stunning rooms that wow the instant someone enters them: the use of creative color. Homeowners looking to deliver impressive interior style can take cues from what will be the trendiest hues of 2015 and beyond.

January 02, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Mortgage rate edges up to 3.87%

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average U.S. mortgage rates rose slightly this week, but the benchmark 30-year rate stayed near a 19-month low.

January 02, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Mortgage rate edges up to 3.87%

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average U.S. mortgage rates rose slightly this week, but the benchmark 30-year rate stayed near a 19-month low.

January 02, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


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