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Archive By Section - HOME SCENE


Don’t let layoff derail condo conversion refi

DEAR BENNY: We are three owners of a property in a nice neighborhood. We own the property as tenants in common, and have shared an interest-only loan since 2005. We are in the process of converting the property into three condominium units. One of the owners lost her job last spring and is now self-employed. The other two owners' employment status has not changed.

June 21, 2012 | By BENNY L. KASS Inman News | HOME SCENE


Who lived here? How to dig up your house's history

The construction of Julian Sellers' bungalow in St. Paul, Minn., was started in 1926 and finished in early 1927. The builder was a Swedish immigrant. The family who first lived there included a married couple, their 6-year-old daughter and the wife's mother.

June 21, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Small space solutions for kitchen

Crowded cabinets, cluttered counters and nonexistent prep space. Sound familiar? For many homeowners, small kitchen spaces make everyday use and entertaining a source of frustration. While a small kitchen can pose many challenges, it doesn't have to stop you from enjoying the space. From a full scale home renovation to some simple and quick fixes, there are many options to help you realize your kitchen's full potential and transform it into a welcoming place where you'll want to spend time.

June 21, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Good health advice you can easily follow

(ARA) - Some things we're supposed to do for our health may seem obviously difficult to accomplish: eating less fast food no matter how yummy it tastes, fitting an hour of vigorous exercise into every day, or giving up bad habits like smoking. You may think one bit of common health advice - to get more fresh air and sunshine - would be easy to follow.

June 16, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Rate on 30-year loan rises to 3.71%

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average rates on fixed mortgages rose this week, the first increase in seven weeks. But mortgage rates remain near historic lows, boosting prospects for home sales this year.

June 16, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Selling a Starker exchange property

DEAR BENNY: We own a small single-family home (800 square feet) located on the property adjacent to our primary home. We purchased it using a Starker exchange about 15 years ago. We stopped renting it out eight years ago, when the mortgage was paid off. We now use it as an extension of our primary home, with the living room as a game room, garage and basement as storage, one bedroom as an office, and the other as a guest bedroom.

June 16, 2012 | Benny L. Kass Attorney | HOME SCENE


Exploring what makes your garden grow

When school lets out for summer, exchange those flip flops for gardening shoes. Add a pair of gloves, good sun-block and get out into the garden.

June 16, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Easy kitchen updates that won’t break the bank & are simple to do

It goes without saying that the kitchen is one of the hardest-working rooms in the home. For most, it's the heart of family life and usually the one room where everyone gathers together. With so much hustle and bustle, it's no wonder that the kitchen runs the risk of looking overworked.

June 16, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


What lies beneath your dream home?

It's moving season. In a buyer-friendly market, home shoppers can be pretty particular in their search for a dream home. Increasingly, buyers are seeking flawless, move-in ready homes, and while traditional home inspections are a must-have, something equally important lurking beneath homes often goes overlooked.

June 16, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


May sees pickup in homes facing risk of foreclosure

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Lenders initiated foreclosure proceedings against more U.S. homeowners in May, setting the stage for increases in home repossessions and short sales - scenarios that could further weigh down home values in coming months.

June 16, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Single-family homes are in a number of cases no longer that

Think American Dream and images of owning a single-family home pop up.

June 08, 2012 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


The heat is on outside, keep cool inside

As summer heats up, air conditioning bills can rapidly rise. As homeowners feel the heat, many are looking for ways to save and stay cool.

June 07, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Tabletop gardens are edible centerpieces

With spring arriving earlier this season, gardeners across the country are inspired to plant now. Daydreams of fresh produce used in delicious sauces, salads and stir fries have many drawing garden plot plans and even starting seeds for future transplanting. Tabletop gardens are a fun and decorative way to expand into new planting opportunities.

June 07, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Buying a foreclosure or short sale with confidence

Buyers are still clamoring for real estate deals in this turbulent market. Foreclosures and short sales offer some of the best bargains, but also have a higher risk level. Still, more than four in five adults think foreclosures and short sales can be good deals, according to a recent American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI) survey.

June 07, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Big design ideas for small kitchen spaces

Bigger isn't always better in the real estate world, and what's more, it's not always possible. With more baby boomers downsizing from McMansions to smaller, more manageable houses, and a growing number of people opting to rent rather than buy, many families are looking for new ways to decorate, design and work with smaller spaces.

June 07, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


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Articles by Section - HOME SCENE


100-YEAR-OLD CRAFTSMAN

PASADENA . (AP) - My love of 100-year-old California Craftsman bungalows - those low-slung, early 20th century Arts and Crafts-era homes known for their clean, horizontal lines and sturdy woodwork - runs long and deep.

January 02, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Curb energy loss with renovation investments

While homeowners may not immediately think of their attic as a major source of energy loss, the reality is that as much as 25 percent of the energy lost in the average American home occurs there. As the weather begins to get cooler, you may be inclined to increase the thermostat to maintain a warm and comfortable home. However, air leakage, caused by numerous gaps and cracks throughout your home's infrastructure, particularly the attic, can cause your HVAC equipment to work overtime and place a strain on your wallet every month.

January 02, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


6 design trends to make your home’s style in 2015

As the new year kicks off, it's the premier time to refresh and refocus on certain aspects of your life ... and the home is no exception. Say goodbye to lackluster interiors as renowned interior designer and DIY television personality, Taniya Nayak, has forecasted the top trends for 2015 that will be sure to enhance and revive any home.

January 02, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Pending home sales rise slightly

WASHINGTON (AP) - The number of Americans signing contracts to buy homes rose modestly in November as a strengthening economy helped nudge some would-be homebuyers.

January 02, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Average 30-year mortgage edges up

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average U.S. mortgage rates rose slightly this week but the benchmark 30-year low remained very close to the 19-month low hit last week.

December 26, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Reverse mortgage can help seniors

Americans have learned a tough lesson: Your home is not your piggy bank. However, there is a reward for those who did build equity in their homes: In their senior years, their home can provide a monthly stream of tax-free income, or a lump sum of cash to spend as they wish, while remaining safely in their home. Or it can provide a source of financing for a new, smaller home.

December 26, 2014 | TERRY SAVAGE | HOME SCENE


FLAT TOPS TO McMANSIONS

It's little wonder that Ozzie was joined by Harriet in the work world.

December 26, 2014 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


What to look for in renovations

The kitchen is the focal point of any home. It's a place where you eat, congregate and celebrate life's big moments. If you are an empty-nester looking for the kitchen of your dreams, a parent seeking to match your kitchen to your growing family or you simply feel inspired to change things for the better, it's time to stop dreaming and start planning.

December 26, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


STAYING PUT

When considering a home renovation, think outside the box for design inspiration and setting the overall tone.

December 19, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Simple steps for protecting your home during holidays

When you think of the holidays, celebrations, presents and friends likely come to mind - not crime. Unfortunately, burglaries increase at this time of year, and your home could be a target. With a few simple safety precautions, you can protect your property, your family and your valuables now and well into the new year.

December 19, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Surprising big ticket bargains you can find at holiday time

Bargain hunting is practically a sport, especially during the holiday shopping season. Deloitte's 2014 annual holiday survey predicts the average American will drop nearly $1,300 this holiday season. With that level of spending in mind, planning to save real money elsewhere is crucial to managing a household's bottom line.

December 19, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Creating the perfect porch can be simple, low-maintenance

Your porch should be a warm, welcoming outdoor living space that offers comfort and helps make a house a home. Whether you want to remodel your porch from the ground up, or just give it a refreshing new look and feel, it's easier than you think to create a perfect porch.

December 19, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Timeless, trendy? Achieve both in your home decor

Are you looking for ways to update your home this new year? With so many fresh interior ideas available, it can be difficult to balance current design trends with classic styles for a look that is both of-the-moment and everlasting. Follow these guidelines to find a way to blend now and forever for a look you will love today and tomorrow.

December 19, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Average 30-year loan rate falls to 3.80%

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average U.S. long-term mortgage rates fell this week, with the benchmark 30-year loan rate reaching a new low for the year.

December 19, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Home starts drop 1.6% in November

WASHINGTON (AP) - Construction of new homes fell slightly in November, reflecting weakness in construction of single-family homes.

December 19, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


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