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Archive By Section - HOME SCENE


A warning about unpaid real estate taxes

DEAR BENNY: Subsequent to the purchase/settlement of my condo, I began receiving claims of delinquent real estate taxes that the seller had neglected to pay from a previous year, prior to my purchase of the property. I notified my settlement agent, who asked that the seller look into the matter, and I have emailed the seller to see what he had done about it.

October 07, 2011 | by BENNY L. KASS Inman News | HOME SCENE


Creating a dream bedroom for your child

Just about every child wishes for a dream bedroom, but it takes inspiration to transform four white walls into a fairytale princess room or tree house hideaway. Fortunately, you don't have to be an interior designer or skilled craftsman to become a hero. A little family compromising, combined with some simple painting techniques, can go a long way in creating a fun, personalized design that kids love - and parents can live with over time.

October 07, 2011 | | HOME SCENE


Fall/winter home decorating tips

Are you over orange as an autumn decorating accent? Bored with relying on balsam and fir touches to evoke a holiday spirit in your home? If cooler weather and the coming holidays have you looking for new decorating ideas, here are some trends that will be heating up interior design this year:

September 30, 2011 | | HOME SCENE


No-interest loan comes with tax bite

DEAR BENNY: My wife and I want to give our two grown children an interest-free loan for $360,000. They currently have a 15-year fixed 5 percent loan for this amount for a second home they both enjoy. With our given money they can immediately pay off the bank loan and pay us back $4,587 per month for approximately 6.5 years. The $4,587 is their current monthly payment. Staying with the bank loan, they would fully pay it off in seven years and 10 months. Paying the loan off 16 months early will represent a savings to ...

September 30, 2011 | by BENNY L. KASS Inman News | HOME SCENE


Winterize your home for long-term payback

You may not want to think about it, but winter will be here again before you know it. Of course, winter means it's time to turn the heat back on, which can be a strain on your home energy budget.

September 30, 2011 | | HOME SCENE


Protecting young children in the home

When your child skins her knee or bumps her head, how do you comfort her? With a kiss and a hug? No matter how loving and careful you are, it's impossible to shield your children from all of life's little injuries.

September 30, 2011 | | HOME SCENE


Time for mortgage lending to go back to the future

Back to the future - that is exactly what the government needs to do.

September 23, 2011 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


Designing with an exceptional shower

For some of us, the shower is a personal sanctuary - the only place and time of the day to unwind and not be bothered by anything from the outside world. So why not make an exceptional shower the centerpiece of your next bathroom remodel? Utilize the latest in style - and even technology - to create the ultimate retreat.

September 23, 2011 | | HOME SCENE


Does foreclosure wipe out all liens?

DEAR BENNY: In a recent column you said that "a foreclosure by a first-trust (lender) will wipe out any subordinate liens." But that is not necessarily the case, is it?

September 23, 2011 | by BENNY L. KASS Inman News | HOME SCENE


‘Know your rights’ housing day Oct. 8

STOCKTON - The California Rural Legal Assistance is holding a free clinic that will provide legal information to those who are at risk of eviction, foreclosure or housing discrimination.

September 23, 2011 | | HOME SCENE


Creating a year-round oasis in your backyard

When winter approaches, do you stow the grill and cover the patio furniture, wishing there was some way you could continue to enjoy your outdoor living space all year? If so, you're not alone.

September 23, 2011 | | HOME SCENE


Artful design pairings create a culinary paradise

Just as matching food with the right wine can elevate a simple meal to the level of a culinary experience, artfully pairing design elements in your kitchen can turn a utilitarian room into a chef's paradise.

September 23, 2011 | | HOME SCENE


Stockton, Modesto homes $58,000 lower than Manteca

Mountain House - ballyhooed as San Joaquin's first affordable housing community in the late 1990s when massive zoning changes were needed to make it happen - is anything but even four years into the foreclosure debacle.

September 17, 2011 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


Buy new, buy now: ‘Turn-key’ sales event

With the success of more than 200 homes sold since the Woodside Homes "Turn-Key" sales event began in mid-July, the builder is extending the celebration through September 30. As part of the promotion, homebuyers enjoy a selection of any two of the available bonuses, including: a designer-coordinated package of a new stainless steel side-by-side refrigerator, washer, dryer and window coverings; backyard landscaping; or 30-year fixed rate financing at a below-market rate of just 3.75 percent.

September 10, 2011 | | HOME SCENE


Beware of hidden foreclosure fees

DEAR BENNY: I recently was the successful bidder on a condo. The closing was within 15 days of the sale, and a special warranty deed was conveyed for the amount of my bid. The closing agent told me after the closing that I had signed a memorandum of foreclosure agreeing to reimburse the seller for prepaid taxes and all amounts claimed owing by the condominium association.

September 03, 2011 | by BENNY L. KASS Inman News | HOME SCENE


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Articles by Section - HOME SCENE


Backyard projects to help create treasured sanctuary

You love the days when you can go home from work, open the windows and enjoy dinner out on the deck. And it sure isn't hard to rise early on those sunny weekend days to spend all day in the backyard. Those days are here, and it's time to get outside to spend time with the grill, the garden and the deck.

August 29, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Home renovation starts with good planning, good insurance

The United States is a country of renovators and remodelers, judging from the steady growth of home improvement projects across the nation in recent years.

August 29, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


5 hot ways to update your home with wood

Wood may be known for its timeless visual appeal, but there's nothing static about the way people showcase it in American homes. Designers, homeowners and DIYers are re-discovering the warmth and beauty of wood. From inventive new uses to re-interpretations of existing styles, they're finding creative ways to use wood throughout the home.

August 29, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Contracts to buy homes rise in July

WASHINGTON (AP) - More Americans signed contracts to buy homes in July, a sign that buying has improved as mortgage rates have slipped, the number of listings has risen and the rate of price increases has slowed.

August 29, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


4 steps for garage organization

Organizing the garage may be one of the most feared tasks in household history. According to a recent Gladiator GarageWorks survey, nearly three out of four households can only park one car in their two-car garage, illustrating the need for a serious garage intervention.

August 29, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


30-year mortgage rate at 4.1 percent

WASHINGTON (AP) - The average 30-year U.S. mortgage rate remained at a 52-week low of 4.10 this week.

August 29, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Average home price gains slows in June

WASHINGTON (AP) - U.S. home prices increased at a slower pace in June - a cooldown that could continue for several more months.

August 29, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Room-to-room home additions

Add quality and comfort to your favorite rooms

August 29, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


UNDER $230,000

The under $230,000 market when it comes to nicer resale homes is almost history once again in Manteca.

August 22, 2014 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


Overcome challenges with raised beds and planters

Small yards, city dwelling or soil that's sandy, rocky or full of clay - it seems no obstacles can keep Americans from the joys of gardening. More than 78 million U.S. households grow gardens, according to the Garden Writers Association Foundation, and many of them don't have optimal conditions to plant their gardens in the ground. When space constraints or soil conditions make traditional gardens impossible or inconvenient, gardeners turn to raised beds and planter boxes to grow the vegetables, herbs and flowers they crave.

August 22, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Decor through the decades: Kitchen, bath design evolves

Remember when brass fixtures and mauve countertops were all the rage in kitchen design? How about the days of shag carpet (yes, in the bathroom) and avocado tile? Fortunately, those particular trends have come and gone. And, whether you embraced them or not, they did have an influence on the space you live in right now. Take a look through the decades to see how decor styles have evolved into the modern kitchens and bathrooms of today.

August 22, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Improvements boost safety, comfort and value of home

Home improvement season is in full swing, and homeowners across the country are deciding which projects to tackle this year. By taking a strategic approach to selecting home improvements, you can go beyond adding value to your property - you can also boost your comfort and safety as well.

August 22, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Housing recovery picking up steam

WASHINGTON (AP) - A fourth straight monthly increase in sales of existing homes provided the latest evidence Thursday that the U.S. housing market is rebounding from a weak start to the year.

August 22, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Home renovation starts with good planning, good insurance

The United States is a country of renovators and remodelers, judging from the steady growth of home improvement projects across the nation in recent years.

August 22, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Average 30-year rate on fixed rate mortgage at 4.10 percent

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average long-term U.S. mortgage rates declined this week, with the 30-year loan rate hitting its 52-week low.

August 22, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


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