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Designing your home office for maximum comfort & productivity

There's no doubt that we're a connected society - and connected like never before through email, social networks, video conference technology, instant messaging, smart phones, the list goes on. While this influx in connectivity has made it easier to do business, it has also blurred the lines between work and home life, resulting with many of us working in our homes at least a few hours each week. If your kitchen countertop has become your go-to place for paying bills, responding to emails and conducting business, it may be time to consider adding a dedicated office space in your ...

March 22, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Five easy spring cleaning tips

Spring is here, which means one thing: it's time to get your home in tip-top shape. By completing a few easy tasks, you can spend more time soaking up the sun and less time on interior projects. Here are five ways to spruce up your home this spring to prepare for a relaxing summer - and give your home that "spring cleaning" feel without spending the entire spring, well, cleaning.

March 15, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Some states saw spike in foreclosures

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Foreclosure activity surged last month across about half of the nation's states, as banks tackled a backlog of homes with mortgages that had gone unpaid yet remained in limbo due to delays stemming from foreclosure-abuse claims.

March 15, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Program helps people become homeowners

JONESBORO, Ark. (AP) - Single mother Melissa Davis used to live in public housing but dreamed of owning her own home.

March 15, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Rate on 30-year loan rises to 3.92%

WASHINGTON (AP) - The average rate in the U.S. on the 30-year fixed mortgage hovered near historic lows this week, making home-buying and refinancing more attractive to those who can qualify.

March 15, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Changes in the housing Changes in the housing market

Last week I talked about how I am seeing more "for sale" signs coming out on properties in my area. Reports around the country are similar to mine and it appears that homeowners who have been waiting to sell, are beginning to believe that the market is turning and that now is time to test the waters.

March 15, 2012 | By DEBORAH ROMERO Special to the Bulletin | HOME SCENE


Must-knows before selling home to daughter

DEAR BENNY: I own two properties and would like to sell my current residence to my daughter and her husband, and move into the other. Its assessed tax value is about $150,000, but I'd like to sell it to them for about $200,000 interest-free. Both my houses are paid off so I don't need any down payment from them.

March 15, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Bank of America to reduce loans for 200K homeowners

NEW YORK (AP) - Bank of America is providing mortgage relief to about 200,000 homeowners.

March 15, 2012 | The Associated Press | HOME SCENE


Home improvements that pay off big

It's beautiful outside and the last thing you want to do is spend all of your spare time working on your home when you could be playing or spending time with loved ones.

March 15, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Average rate on 30-year mortgage still a bargain dipping to 3.88 percent

WASHINGTON (AP) - Fixed-rate mortgages remain a bargain at the start of the spring-buying season: The average rate on the 30-year mortgage dipped this week, while the 15-year loan fell to a new record low.

March 08, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Woodside Homes begins spring fling bonus event

Woodside Homes celebrated the start of its Spring Fling Bonus sales event last weekend, giving buyers their choice of five valuable move-in bonuses with the purchase of a new home.

March 08, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Home-readiness tips for sports fans

As the weather gets warmer, fans anxiously wait for their favorite sport to take center stage. College basketball fans fill out their brackets, golfers dust off their clubs and dream about green jackets, baseball diamonds are prepped for opening day and the professional basketball playoff run starts heating up.

March 08, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Obama unveils another housing plan

WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama is aiming mortgage relief at members of the military as well as homeowners with government-insured loans, the administration's latest efforts to address a persistent housing crisis.

March 08, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Q&A on administration's latest mortgage-aid plan

WASHINGTON (AP) - The Obama administration is offering some relief to homeowners who have government-backed mortgages. Under a program President Barack Obama unveiled Tuesday, the government would cut the fees it charges to insure those borrowers.

March 08, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


The bottom line: It is a good time to jump into market

The European Debt crisis has been noticeably absent from the news this week. No the crisis is not solved…however it does seem like the imminent reports of a Greek debt default have gone away. The stock market investors don't know what to do with themselves. The market continues to trade within a very narrow range. Gas prices are hurting at the pump but not enough to really have consumers changing their spending habits.

March 08, 2012 | By DEBORAH ROMERO Special to the Bulletin | HOME SCENE


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Articles by Section - HOME SCENE


Simple steps for organized & sensational garage space

Move over kitchens and bathrooms, homeowners are focusing on a new part of the home: the garage. No longer just a place to park the car and lawn equipment, today's garages are getting bigger and better. Here are a few quick and easy projects to create a useful and organized garage.

October 03, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Smart, stylish solutions keep entire home cool

Don't sweat it if your home doesn't have central air-conditioning. Whether you live in an older house that can't accommodate ductwork, or you don't want to sacrifice your interior aesthetics with an unattractive air conditioning unit, you can still keep your home feeling - and looking - cool this summer with advanced air conditioning technology.

October 03, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Average 30-year mortgage rate at 4.19%

WASHINGTON (AP) - A key long-term U.S. mortgage rate dipped this week, the second drop after a large increase two weeks ago.

October 03, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Pet-proofing your home in preparation for adopting

The addition of a new pet to the family is always a cause for celebration. Stress can occur, too, no matter how welcome the new addition. When you're thinking about adopting a pet from an animal shelter, some preparation can help ensure he or she is as safe and happy as possible.

October 03, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Keep winter energy bills in check

As winter temperatures drop, the potential for higher utility bills goes up. Taking steps ahead of the cold season can help you trim costs and make your home more energy efficient, keeping those utility bills in check even as the winter weather rages.

October 03, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Mini-makeovers deliver big home value return

Kitchen and bathroom remodeling projects can significantly add comfort, improve functionality and increase the home's resale value. Whichever reason drives homeowners to complete an improvement project, they need to pick one that also delivers a return on investment.

October 03, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


$MART MOVE$

She's a single woman in Manteca in her 50s.

September 26, 2014 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


Driveways to mailboxes: Ways to drive your home’s curb appeal

Selling or staying, it makes no difference - everyone wants a home that looks great from the curb. Curb appeal comes together when all the elements of a home's facade are in good shape and working together. Driveways that are cracked or pitted with potholes, dingy front doors and other seemingly minor complaints like a shabby, scuffed mailbox, can all significantly detract from a home's overall curb appeal.

September 26, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Average 30-year mortgage at 4.20%

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average long-term U.S. mortgage rates declined slightly this week, after marking their largest one-week gain of the year the previous week.

September 26, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Selling soon? 6 upgrades to secure a speedy sale

If you'll be putting your home on the market this year, simple, cost-effective upgrades can help ensure a speedy sale at a good price.

September 26, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Do’s and don’ts: Art of tackling your tile project

Do's and don'ts for making your next tile project perfect

September 26, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Avoid bathroom remodeling blues with budget-friendly tips

Beautifying your bathroom sounds exciting but oftentimes renovation plans begin with good intentions and end up a long, costly nightmare. The national average cost for a bathroom remodel is $10,142, according to the Cost Guide from HomeAdvisor.com. That's a hefty investment but one that can easily be reduced with a simple refresh of the space instead. Here are five cost-effective updates you can make to your bathroom in as little as a weekend.

September 26, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


ON THE WATER

You don't have to buy in Stockton's Quail Lakes or Brookside neighborhoods if you want to live on the water.

September 12, 2014 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


Simple, affordable ways to personalize home decor

Every generation of homeowners has its design priorities. Baby boomers look for home design that will let them age in place, while generation X wants features that facilitate busy lifestyles. Millennials crave interior decor that meshes with their technology, blending energy efficiency, family-friendly features and plenty of personalization. Since many millennials are starting out in their personal and professional lives, affordability is also a priority.

September 12, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Save money, time and energy making improvements in tandem

Most of us spend our day multi-tasking. At work or home, we want to maximize our time and resources in order to accomplish the most work while expending the minimum required effort. Home improvement should be no different. In order to make the most of your home improvement resources, it makes sense to undertake certain projects in tandem.

September 12, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


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