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Archive By Section - HOME SCENE


5 percent jump in home prices biggest in 6 years

WASHINGTON (AP) - A measure of U.S. home prices jumped 5 percent in September compared with a year ago, the largest year-over-year increase since July 2006. The gain reported by CoreLogic offered more evidence of a sustainable housing recovery.

November 08, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Learn important lesson from Sandy’s destruction

In the past year, we've seen tornadoes sweeping across middle America, rivers flooding their banks along the Mississippi and out-of-control wildfires destroying homes in California, Colorado and Texas. But watching the ocean sweep across Wall Street, flooding the New York subway system and destroying a whole section of Queens and New Jersey must finally bring home our total vulnerability to nature.

November 08, 2012 | By TERRY SAVAGE Financial Advisor | HOME SCENE


Good news: Assessor says the bottom has bottomed out

My property tax bill hasn't changed for the second straight year.

November 02, 2012 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


Create your holiday home with lights that accent looks

When it comes to decorating with lights for the holidays, there are unlimited ways to add twinkle to the inside as well as the outside of your home. Some people favor an elegant, restrained sprinkling of lights around a door, while others go for a more exuberant display of illumination on virtually every surface.

November 01, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Home prices rise at faster pace for sustained gains

WASHINGTON (AP) - Home prices rose in August in nearly all U.S. cities, and many of the markets hit hardest during the crisis are starting to show sustained gains. The increases are the latest evidence of a steady housing recovery.

November 01, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Flood insurance still relatively rare for Northeast homeowners

NEW YORK (AP) - Many homeowners who suffered losses because of flooding from Hurricane Sandy are likely to find themselves out of luck. Standard homeowners policies don't cover flooding damage, and the vast majority of homeowners don't have flood insurance.

November 01, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Average rate on 30-year loan dips to 3.39 percent

WASHINGTON (AP) - The average U.S. rate on a 30-year fixed mortgage slipped this week and stayed near its record low, a trend that's helped boost home sales and refinancing.

November 01, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Refinance misstep forfeits low HELOC rate

DEAR BENNY: A mortgage broker advised us several years ago to split our mortgage into a $400,000 mortgage and a $100,000 line of credit (we had $300,000 total available on the HELOC). A few months ago, we refinanced our $400,000 mortgage with our current lender. (Our house is assessed at $900,000.) We asked our lender if we could refinance our mortgage up to $500,000, pay down the $100,000 drawn on the HELOC, but still keep the HELOC with the HELOC lender open, and our lender said "yes."

November 01, 2012 | By BENNY L. KASS Inman News | HOME SCENE


Broker: Wright-designed Ariz. home to be preserved

PHOENIX (AP) - A Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Phoenix home that had been slated for demolition will apparently survive under a new owner.

November 01, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


US builders boost September spending by 0.6 percent

WASHINGTON (AP) - U.S. builders spent more on home construction in September, a gain that helped offset weakness in nonresidential building and government projects.

November 01, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Nick-of-time tips to make your home holiday ready

As you prepare to celebrate the holidays, welcoming loved ones into your home is a highlight of the festivities. You may eagerly look forward to gathering with family and friends, but is your house holiday and houseguest ready?

November 01, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Selecting a trustworthy mover is the first step in avoiding headaches

Americans are on the move. The United States Census Bureau estimates that 12.5 percent of Americans - nearly 40 million people - changed residences each of the past two years. While many turned to moving professionals for assistance, some learned the hard way that not all moving companies are created equally. In fact, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) received nearly 3,000 complaints about moving companies last year alone - a double-digit increase from the prior year.

November 01, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Sales contracts to buy homes rose last month

WASHINGTON (AP) - The number of Americans who signed contracts to buy homes rose only slightly, suggesting sales may level off in the coming months after solid gains in the past year.

November 01, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Sales contracts to buy homes rose last month

WASHINGTON (AP) - The number of Americans who signed contracts to buy homes rose only slightly, suggesting sales may level off in the coming months after solid gains in the past year.

October 25, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Must I compensate my agent if I don’t buy?

DEAR BENNY: Could you advise me of the appropriate (and legal) way to compensate the buyer's agent we used for our unsuccessful house hunt?

October 25, 2012 | By BENNY L. KASS Inman News | HOME SCENE


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Articles by Section - HOME SCENE


Affordable entertaining ideas for holiday parties

The holidays are coming up quickly, and that means there's plenty of reason to celebrate. Whether you're throwing a party for the first time or you're continuing a long-running annual tradition, hosting a festive celebration with friends and family is a lot of work and always worth it. This year, take your party to the next level to truly impress your guests - without breaking the bank.

November 14, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Five home design tips on layering from professionals

Designers are often drawn to a simple, modern look - however, layering unique patterns and textures in the home is a quickly growing trend. Keep your space harmonized, yet distinct, with the tips outlined below.

November 14, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


THE ENTERTAINER

Looking for a home that does more than put on a good facade from the curb?

November 14, 2014 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


Get a jump on this year’s predicted polar vortex

Last winter's polar vortex not only affected the majority of the country with subfreezing temperatures, but wreaked havoc on utility bills. In fact, consumers in 13 states and the District of Columbia used enough energy in January to capture eight of the 10 highest winter demand days on record, according to PJM Interconnection, the electricity grid operator. According to the Farmers' Almanac and other weather predictors, a polar vortex is expected to rear its ugly head again this winter.

November 14, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Tips on how to make your bathroom shower sing

It's where some of your best ideas are born, and where you unwind - or get ready - for the day. And although your current shower might be fine, why not make it fabulous? Here are the latest trends and products to create a fantastic shower experience.

November 14, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Subprime services firm abandons disputed fees

WASHINGTON (AP) - A company with ties to the nation's largest overseer of subprime mortgages announced under pressure Wednesday it will stop collecting controversial insurance fees from homeowners whose properties were under foreclosure. The announcement came three months after The Associated Press highlighted its business practices.

November 14, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


30-year loan rate slips to 4.01 pct.

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average U.S. long-term mortgage rates edged lower this week, approaching their lows for the year. The benchmark 30-year loan rate hovered near 4 percent.

November 14, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


ORIGINAL OWNERS

Its rare today in Manteca to find a newer home with four bedrooms under $150 a square-foot that is in move-in condition in a desirable neighborhood.

November 07, 2014 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


Timely solutions to get your house holiday ready

The fun chaos of the holidays is right around the corner. Family gatherings to plan, delicious meals to prepare, gifts to find and purchase, and a house to decorate ... the list goes on!

November 07, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Timely solutions to get your house holiday ready

The fun chaos of the holidays is right around the corner. Family gatherings to plan, delicious meals to prepare, gifts to find and purchase, and a house to decorate ... the list goes on!

November 07, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Say bye-bye to bathroom remodeling blues with 5 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.

November 07, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Six yard projects you shouldn’t skip this fall

When it comes to caring for your yard, maintenance is crucial - especially during the fall when it needs to recover from the wear and tear of summer and prepare for winter's harsh conditions. Knowing what your lawn and garden needs from season to season not only makes it easier for you to stay organized with your list of backyard to-do's, but it also allows you to identify and treat any problems before they become bigger issues down the road.

November 07, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Five common weatherization myths taken apart and busted

Last winter's visit from the polar vortex made for bone-chilling blizzards and teeth-chattering temperatures. If this year is anything like the last, drafty homes and high thermostat settings will accompany the freezing weather. Unfortunately, many homeowners get cold feet when it comes to weatherizing their homes, citing various reasons why they don't just get it done. Here are five common weatherizing myths you should overcome to help you get ready this winter:

November 07, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


30-year mortgage rate up to 4.02 percent

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average U.S. long-term mortgage rates rose this week, with the benchmark 30-year loan crawling back over 4 percent. It was the second straight week of increases in rates after they had fallen for five weeks amid concern over global economic weakness.

November 07, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


SHOP AROUND

Beware of e-lenders and unsolicited junk mail from boiler room mortgage lenders bearing gifts of lower mortgage payments.

October 31, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


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