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Archive By Section - HOME SCENE


Closing Fannie, Freddie could boost mortgage rates

WASHINGTON (AP) - Homebuyers could feel the pinch if Congress follows through on plans to shut down Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the government-controlled mortgage guarantee giants that were rescued by a $187 billion taxpayer bailout during the financial crisis.

August 09, 2013 | | HOME SCENE


Average rate on 30-year loan at 4.40 percent

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average U.S. rates on fixed mortgages barely changed this week, giving prospective homebuyers time to lock in relatively low rates.

August 09, 2013 | | HOME SCENE


Real estate inheritance tax tips

DEAR BENNY: I am a retired widow who owns two homes. I have two children. Is it possible for each one to be a co-owner with me: one child on one house and the other on the second property? How would I go about doing this? Would that save anything on taxes, etc., for my two adult children? Would it cost me anything other than the filing fee for the property ownership papers of each of the homes?

August 09, 2013 | BENNY L. KASS | HOME SCENE


Freddie Mac earns $5B in 2nd quarter

WASHINGTON (AP) - Freddie Mac earned $5 billion from April through June, the seventh straight profitable quarter for the mortgage giant.

August 09, 2013 | | HOME SCENE


Fannie Mae posts $10.1B net income for 2Q

WASHINGTON (AP) - Mortgage giant Fannie Mae earned $10.1 billion in the second quarter, aided by the recovery in the housing market. The government-controlled company has turned a profit in each of the past six quarters.

August 09, 2013 | | HOME SCENE


Remodeling: Making your space work for you

(BPT) - As more people choose to stay in their current homes longer, Americans are diving into large remodel projects. Forty percent of homeowners plan to remodel or build an addition to their existing home within the next two years, with kitchen and bathroom projects remaining the most popular remodeling jobs, according to the 2013 Houzz and Home Survey.

August 09, 2013 | | HOME SCENE


Wall-mounted sliding door ‘reflects’ solid design solution

Like many couples who share a bathroom, one Arizona couple was frustrated by the space that was compromised by a swinging bathroom door. The open door swung into the bathroom vanity and took up too much space in a very traditional bathroom.

August 09, 2013 | | HOME SCENE


Inventory, not interest, is key

Good afternoon Real Estate Boys; it is well over 100 degrees outside as I write to you gentlemen. Boy the heat is on and it's only July 2. While the heat is my question it has nothing to do with the weather outside. More to the point, my question is about the heat of the market. You Boys let your readers know about the interest rate hike a few weeks before it happened and you've been somewhat accurate about the market itself. So, with interest rates going up about a whole point last week, now here's the ...

August 09, 2013 | The Real Estate Boys | HOME SCENE


Make your own masterpieces: painted focal points for rooms

Still love the overall design scheme of a space, but feeling a little bored? The best way to breathe new life into it - without revamping the entire area - is by creating a new focal wall. Instead of a decal, stencil or pricey artwork, make a statement that's one-of-a-kind with a little creativity and painter's tape.

July 26, 2013 | | HOME SCENE


Former Long-time renter is $18,000 ahead after buying home 5 years ago

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

July 26, 2013 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


Building homes that make more power than they take

NEW PALTZ, N.Y. (AP) - Homes being built in this Hudson Valley cul-de-sac offer prospective buyers wooded lots, pretty views and - oh yes - the promise of thumbing your nose at the power utility.

July 26, 2013 | | HOME SCENE


Average rate on 30-year loan falls to 4.31 percent

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average rates on U.S. fixed mortgages fell for the second straight week, a welcome sign for homebuyers hoping to lock in lower rates that had spiked earlier this month.

July 26, 2013 | | HOME SCENE


Best backyard bets for enhancing outdoor living

From entertainment systems and fully functional kitchens to luxurious furnishings and decor, it's easy to drop a bundle on improving your outdoor living spaces. The choices seem to be unlimited. But no matter how much you love your deck or patio - and most Americans do - you probably don't have an unlimited budget for equipping your outdoor space.

July 26, 2013 | | HOME SCENE


Advice on protecting rental property

Q: What is needed in landlord insurance? My husband and I have become accidental landlords due to me not wanting to sell my family home after my father's passing.

July 26, 2013 | BENNY L. KASS | HOME SCENE


6 in 10 Vegas home sales involve cash

LAS VEGAS (AP) - Cash is king buying a house in southern Nevada.

July 26, 2013 | | HOME SCENE


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Articles by Section - HOME SCENE


Garden takes inspiration from quilts

ASHEVILLE, N.C. (AP) - It's not uncommon to see floral patterns on quilts. But how about flowers planted in a quilt pattern?

June 12, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Tips, tech make for a tidy home

With spring in full swing and summer fast approaching, finding ways to save time on indoor chores can help get you out of the house faster and back to enjoying your favorite outdoor pastimes. Tame household dust, hair and dirt in a snap this summer with these efficient and effective cleaning tips:

June 12, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


How to secure the home loan you need

Springtime represents new beginnings and is the prime time to get the house in order. Whether you're looking to make a first-time purchase, refresh an existing home or simply leverage built-up equity for other reasons, it's important to figure out which path is right for you and understand the lending options available.

June 12, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


30-year mortgage jumps to high for year

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average long-term U.S. mortgage rates jumped this week to their highest levels this year, with the key 30-year rate topping 4 percent for the first time since late 2014.

June 12, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


LET IT GROW

Whether it's a just a vibrant pop of pretty petals you want added to the front of the home or a raised bed full of delicious fruits and vegetables, the return of warmer weather has many homeowners reaching for their gardening gloves.

June 12, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


How to bring the indoors out

Gone are the days of basic backyards outfitted with plastic furniture and folding lawn chairs. Today's outdoor spaces have evolved to become true extensions of the home offering all the style, comfort and function of an interior living area. From furniture and accessories to fully-appointed outdoor kitchens, the lines between indoors and out have blurred beyond distinction.

June 12, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Drought spurs home water recycling

BERKELEY (AP) - Showering during California's drought is a guilt-free experience for homeowners Catarina Negrin and Noah Friedman.

June 05, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Out-of-the-ordinary upgrades

Perhaps your home is in pretty good shape - newish roof, well-maintained furnace and air-conditioning, and fresh paint throughout. Or maybe you've bought a brand-new house that's move-in ready. Even though you don't really need to do a thing to the home, you may still have the urge to update. But what can you do when everything is already just about perfect?

June 05, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Average rate on 30-year mortgage stays at 3.87 percent

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average long-term U.S. mortgage rates were flat to slightly lower this week, remaining near their highest levels so far this year.

June 05, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


HOUSING DEBT

WASHINGTON (AP) - Al and Saundra Karp have found an unconventional way to raise money and help save their Miami-area home from foreclosure: They're lining up gigs for their family jazz band.

June 05, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


US regulators warn: Ads for reverse mortgages can mislead

WASHINGTON (AP) - We've seen the TV ad pitches from celebrities like "The Fonz" Henry Winkler and actor and ex-senator Fred Thompson, touting the benefits of reverse mortgages for older homeowners.

June 05, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Pot or plot? ‘Right-size’ plant picks

Have you ever walked into a room that was so full of over-sized furniture it made an already small space feel miniscule and unusable? Or tricked your tummy into being satisfied with less food by using a small plate to make a modest portion look huge? Scale makes a decided difference in many aspects of life, and gardening is no different.

June 05, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


SF files suit against landlord for evictions

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - San Francisco has filed a lawsuit against a property owner, claiming she has been harassing and intimidating her rent-controlled tenants to force them from their apartments.

June 05, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


BEST POSITIONING

Equations are for more than just math class; did you know there's a proper order of operations for your home, too? Whether it's arranging your couch and television for optimal viewing or making sure towel bars are right within reach, knowing a few key numbers can help you determine the ideal place for each item in your home - creating spaces that look great and are easy-to-use.

May 29, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Creating an island paradise in kitchen

Custom cabinetry, granite countertops, reclaimed wood flooring and accents, and top-of-the-line, high-tech appliances - what more do you need to make your kitchen renovation perfect? How about adding an island? Designers and builders across the country are pointing to the addition of an island as the must-have upgrade for kitchen renovations this year.

May 29, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


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