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Archive By Section - HOME SCENE


Three steps to ensure you get best deal when buying a house

Ample inventory, low mortgage rates and motivated sellers - all these key elements are present in real estate markets across the country, indicating it's still a great time to buy a house. If you're thinking of buying a house - whether it's new or existing, your first home or your fifth - you can help ensure you get the best possible deal by doing a few things before you get down to serious shopping.

April 02, 2011 | | HOME SCENE


Colorful exteriors without drop of paint

Nothing brightens a home's personality more dramatically than brilliant color. It's easy to freshen your home's exterior with color trim around windows, doors or along corners. With color trim, there are endless ways you can evoke any emotion or personality you desire. Whether you wish for tranquility, elegance or modernism, it's time to add some color to your "to-do" list.

April 02, 2011 | | HOME SCENE


How do you know when you are ready to buy a house?

Since the foreclosure crisis began, many Americans have been thinking a little bit more critically about whether they are truly ready for home ownership.

April 02, 2011 | | HOME SCENE


Update interiors with quick flooring transformation

Is your home in need of a makeover to go from boring to brilliant? What better time than now to update your home's tired, worn interior. You need look no further than right under your feet - to the floor below - for a simple, budget-minded way to freshen your decor and add to your home's value. Give any room of the house an updated look with flooring that mimics natural stone or ceramic tile, but without the upkeep or high cost.

April 02, 2011 | | HOME SCENE


Five tips for small landlords on how to protect your investment

More and more homeowners who are moving are delaying selling their homes, choosing instead to rent them out as the housing market continues to struggle. The lagging housing market has given others the opportunity to buy properties for investment purposes. Since many of these homeowners don't have much experience as a landlord, they're often required to learn on the fly.

April 02, 2011 | | HOME SCENE


Buying puts money in your pocket in long run even without equity gain

What is the better value: Three bedrooms, one bathroom with 986 square feet of living space for $720 a month or three bedrooms, two bathrooms with 1,012 to 1,296 square feet of living space for $855 a month?

March 26, 2011 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


Going green: Energy efficient windows

Now that spring is here, many homeowners are thinking about remodeling projects that will improve the home this season and year-round. Whether you're planning a few do-it-yourself improvements or a major renovation, it's important to think "green." One way to enhance the beauty and comfort of your home while saving on energy is by installing highly energy efficient windows.

March 26, 2011 | | HOME SCENE


Growing vegetables can be easy

Some things bear repeating: Plant vegetables.

March 26, 2011 | By LEE REICH For The Associated Press | HOME SCENE


Garden prep 101: Getting ready for season

Outside birds are singing and bits of green are popping up all around. As seasons change from winter to spring, the gardener's mind quickly leaps to growing flowers and produce. Before getting out there and planting, follow these basic garden preparations to get the most out of this growing season.

March 26, 2011 | | HOME SCENE


Sensory gardens: Days of wine & roses

FULTON (AP) - Imagine a garden where melon, peach, apple, lemon, pear and gardenias bloom. Then imagine holding all that in a glass.

March 19, 2011 | By MICHELLE LOCKE For The Associated Press | HOME SCENE


Going from cookie cutter to custom

A new home: It's your chance to personalize your living space with details that suit your taste and personality. Or, so you think. Many builders only allow you to choose colors; and offer limited options beyond their builders' grade materials. Or, if you've purchased a previously owned home, it too is most likely equipped with many basic options.

March 19, 2011 | | HOME SCENE


Pros and cons of organic vs. synthetic fertilizers

Another growing season is fast approaching, and before you can seed you must feed.

March 19, 2011 | By DEAN FOSDICK For The Associated Press | HOME SCENE


Manteca prices up, SF prices down in 2011

Bay Area housing price trends in the past have been used by real estate agents as a barometer as what is to come in Manteca and the rest of the Northern San Joaquin Valley.

March 12, 2011 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


Doors, a forgotten design element

It's a design opportunity that's easily missed: Even the most stylishly decorated rooms often have bland wooden doors with cheap hardware.

March 12, 2011 | By MELISSA RAYWORTH For The Associated Press | HOME SCENE


Spring’s hot color for homes?

Bright red-pink and bursting with energy, honeysuckle is dominating home decor trends in 2011 as a playful and vibrant alternative to the serene turquoise of 2010.

March 12, 2011 | By SARAH WOLFE For The Associated Press | HOME SCENE


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Articles by Section - HOME SCENE


Ripon Garden Club plans tour of Wild Blooms Flower & Produce

The Ripon Garden Club is planning a field trip on Wednesday, Aug. 6, at 9 a.m. at Wild Blooms Flower & Produce Farm, 22828 North Ripon Road, Ripon.

July 18, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


How can she force a sale of properties held jointly with ex?

Q: I have been divorced since 2010, and my ex still has 2 properties owned jointly with me. Is it at all possible that I can force the sale of these properties. Kay.

July 11, 2014 | Benny L. Kass | HOME SCENE


RIVER ISLAND’S APPEAL

River Islands at Lathrop - the largest ever planned community in the Northern San Joaquin Valley - is off to a strong start.

July 11, 2014 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


Build a lasting memory with backyard project

There are regular backyard projects and then there are those special backyard projects that bring families closer together, both during the construction and while enjoying the finished piece.

July 11, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


A sure-footed way to choose new flooring

When spring-cleaning uncovers a worn floor it may be time to consider purchasing a new one, especially if you're selling your home in the near future. A new floor, like refreshed paint and updated fixtures, makes a home more enjoyable to live in as well as more marketable.

July 11, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Modern art creation, display evolves with new technology

Can you imagine a museum without paintings? Technology has impacted society in countless ways but many overlook its impact on the arts. The very phrase "the arts" might evoke images of oils, watercolors or sculpture but technology is inspiring a whole new generation of artists who are using new mediums to create their masterpieces.

July 11, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


30-year mortgage rate rises to 4.15 pct

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average U.S. rates on fixed mortgages edged up slightly this week, remaining near historically low levels.

July 11, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Driveways to mailboxes are overlooked for 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.

July 11, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Del Webb comes home

The largest residential development in Manteca history - and one that is slowly changing the city's demographics – is the progression of an idea launched 58 years ago by a Fresno native.

July 04, 2014 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


Custom home decor without all the hassle and high costs

Conventional wisdom holds that in order to achieve a custom look in your home decor you either have to spend a bundle hiring professionals, or invest countless hours of hard work doing it yourself. In the Internet age, however, it's easier than ever to achieve the look of custom home decor without the expense or hassle of traditional methods.

July 04, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


How to easily achieve today’s hottest home improvements

Whether you're staying in place or planning to take advantage of an improving real estate market to sell your home, spring and summer are upgrade seasons. From adding a bathroom to creating an outdoor kitchen, certain improvements pay off for both homeowners who are selling and those who are staying. And while plumbing challenges, such as breaking through concrete or opening walls, may discourage some people, savvy homeowners know a tried-and-true option solves such problems.

July 04, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


How ceiling fans offer energy efficiency, decor

Savvy interior designers know that items that are both fashionable and functional are in high demand. One of the best examples of a stylish, hardworking home fixture is also one of the most overlooked: the ceiling fan. In 2014, more homeowners are realizing the potential this classic technology has not only on their comfort levels, but also on their interior's design aesthetic.

July 04, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Empty nesters want low- maintenance yards, not fuss

One of the first questions new empty nesters face is: what do we do with the nest? Some are eager to downsize and sell. Others like where they live and choose to stay put.

July 04, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


6 upgrades to secure a speedy sale

When the weather warms up, so does the real estate market. Spring and summer are traditionally the seasons when both home buyers and sellers are most active across the country. 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.

June 27, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Lew announces expanded housing support programs

WASHINGTON (AP) - The Obama administration is extending for another year a program aimed at helping people struggling to avoid foreclosure on their homes, Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew said Thursday.

June 27, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


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