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Archive By Section - HOME SCENE


Installing gas fireplaces

A gas fireplace can add ambiance and warmth to any room, and with the cold weather, you might be dreaming of adding one in your home. Because purchasing a fireplace is not something we do every day, there are some important things to consider.

December 16, 2011 | | HOME SCENE


Help protect your home from rodents this winter

The cold temperatures are settling in for the winter months, and if you're not careful, rodents can also settle into your home. Your house - especially your kitchen - offers everything rats and mice are looking for: food, water and warmth.

December 16, 2011 | | HOME SCENE


Save money with energy efficiency tips

Saving money is on everyone's mind this winter season. Between the holiday expenses, colder temperatures and tight budgets, finding ways to reduce costs can be a bit of a challenge. If you're looking for ways to save, look at your home, and see if you can improve on your energy efficiency - thereby keeping a few extra dollars in your pocket.

December 16, 2011 | | HOME SCENE


Easy ways to warm up your home decor

As the chill of winter sets in, your home interior may be lacking the warmth and comfort you'd prefer. Fortunately, creating an inviting atmosphere does not require huge amounts of time or money. And you don't need to be a professional interior designer - or even have experience in decorating - to transform your home into a welcoming haven. To bring your decor into the season and give your home noticeable appeal, follow a few easy tips.

December 16, 2011 | | HOME SCENE


Smart ways to use credit when redecorating

When your redecorating project is done, you want everyone who sees it to think it looks like a million bucks. But woe to your wallet - and possibly your credit - if you overspend to achieve that look.

December 16, 2011 | | HOME SCENE


More affordable to buy in SJ Valley

The Northern San Joaquin Valley was flying high five years ago.

December 09, 2011 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


Sidestep penalty for early mortgage payoff

DEAR BENNY: I was at the closing table for my condo purchase only to discover that there was a penalty for early payoff. I called the bank immediately and they told me to "take it or leave it."

December 09, 2011 | by BENNY L. KASS Inman News | HOME SCENE


Top home decor trends for 2012

From warm woods and creative colors to memorable murals and tailored textures, interior designers and industry experts predict 2012 will offer a multitude of options for those interested in giving their homes a fresh look. Even better for today's cost-conscious consumers is that many of the trends are easy and inexpensive.

December 09, 2011 | | HOME SCENE


Winter: Time to plan outdoor updates

Does the bitter cold weather have you dreaming of warm days spending time with friends and family in your backyard? The cold may keep us indoors, but professionals in the landscape and remodeling industry are still thinking about the outdoors and use the winter months to plan spring projects, and so should you.

December 09, 2011 | | HOME SCENE


Greet holiday guests with a warm, stylish, sensible home

Twinkling lights, fragrant wreaths and freshly baked cookies help set the stage, but holiday guests truly feel at home when you provide a warm, cozy environment.

November 18, 2011 | | HOME SCENE


Get ready for revival of the zombies

Manteca has plenty of "zombies."

November 18, 2011 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


Circumvent rigid down-payment gift rules

DEAR BENNY: I live in Connecticut and my husband stays several nights a week in Massachusetts. We saw a duplex we would like to buy in Massachusetts. He would live in one part and there is already a tenant in the other part.

November 17, 2011 | by BENNY L. KASS Inman News | HOME SCENE


Affordable holiday decor updates

Welcoming friends and family into your home is one of the best ways to celebrate the season. One of the keys to making visitors feel right at home is to be a happy host. So, do yourself - and your guests - a favor and put a little effort into getting your home holiday houseguest perfect.

November 10, 2011 | | HOME SCENE


Housing prices going up 11.5% next year?

Here's an eye-opener: Housing prices in California are expected to surge 11.5 percent in 2012.

November 10, 2011 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


When is a HUD-1 form required?

DEAR BENNY: Do we have to do a HUD-1 form on a cash sale? The home is paid off and I am selling for cash. There is no lender involved. --Keith

November 10, 2011 | by BENNY L. KASS Inman News | HOME SCENE


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Articles by Section - HOME SCENE


Solid new-home sales lift hopes for housing market

WASHINGTON (AP) - A surprisingly strong pace of new-home sales last month has boosted hopes that the spring buying season will be solid enough to lift the overall economy.

February 28, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Average 30-year mortgage rate reaches 4.37 percent

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average U.S. rates on fixed mortgages rose for a third straight week as new data showed a surprisingly strong pace of new-home sales last month. Rates still remain near historically low levels.

February 28, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Freddie Mac posts $8.6B profit in 4Q

WASHINGTON (AP) - Mortgage giant Freddie Mac posted net income of $8.6 billion for the October through December period, its ninth straight profitable quarter. Earnings were boosted by the continued rise in home prices, which reduced the amounts the company had to set aside to cover losses on mortgages.

February 28, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Oscar horse race to be a photo finish

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Many of the winners who will take home an Oscar on Sunday have long been forecast, their triumph made seemingly self-evident after months of anticipation. That is, except for one little category: best picture.

February 28, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


ND home prices soar with oil boom

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - North Dakota's oil boom isn't just driving up housing prices at the epicenter. Getting a roof overhead is getting more expensive throughout the state, with the average value of a home sold last year topping $200,000 - up more than 20 percent from 2011, a real estate trade group says.

February 21, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Builder confidence sinks in February

NMEW YORK (AP) - U.S. homebuilders' confidence in the housing market declined sharply this month as the severe weather battering much of the nation keeps many would-be buyers at home.

February 21, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Put your decorating fears to bed by employing the latest color trends

The bedroom is an oasis. It's the place where you wake up, energized and ready to start the day, as well as where you slip away and unwind from the day's activities. This is the one room that is truly yours, so make sure it's a reflection of your personality.

February 21, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Put your decorating fears to bed by employing the latest color trends

The bedroom is an oasis. It's the place where you wake up, energized and ready to start the day, as well as where you slip away and unwind from the day's activities. This is the one room that is truly yours, so make sure it's a reflection of your personality.

February 21, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


4 quick color tips to awaken your home

While many resolutions are based on eating healthier and exercising more, homes rarely receive the same promise of improvement. This year, resolve to give your home some attention by committing to a new coat of paint. Painting can be a quick and cost-effective way to refresh your home, so consider updating several spaces for a clean start.

February 21, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Foreclosure rate almost back to normal

Good news.

February 21, 2014 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


Storms put chill on new housing starts

WASHINGTON (AP) - U.S. home construction fell in January for a second month but the weakness in both months reflected severe winter weather in many parts of the country. The expectation is that housing will deliver another year of solid gains, helped by an improving economy.

February 21, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Average 30-year loan rate up to 4.33 percent

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average U.S. rates on fixed mortgages rose this week but remained near historically low levels.

February 21, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Prepping sun-friendly skylights

When spring finally arrives, windows and skylights across the country will open, as happy homeowners revel in all that sunshine and warm, fresh air. But before you can savor spring, you still have weeks of winter to get through. You can use that time wisely to ensure all your home's windows, skylights and doors are in good working order - and ready for action when spring arrives.

February 14, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Fewer homes repossessed during January

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Lenders repossessed fewer U.S. homes in January, bringing the number of completed foreclosures down to the lowest level in more than six years.

February 14, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Few homes on market; California sales lower

SAN DIEGO (AP) - California homes sales dropped sharply in January due to a seasonal slump and a lack of affordable homes on the market, a research firm reported Thursday.

February 14, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


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