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Archive By Section - HOME SCENE


Average rate on 30-year mortgage down to 3.90% just above record low

WASHINGTON (AP) - The average rate on the 30-year mortgage edged down this week to hover again above record lows. Cheaper rates have spurred modest improvements in the battered housing market, but not enough to signal a recovery.

March 01, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Sales contracts for homes rose 2 percent in January

WASHINGTON (AP) - The number of Americans who signed contracts to buy homes rose in January to the highest level in nearly two years, supporting the view that the housing market is gradually coming back.

March 01, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Foreclosures comprised smaller slice of 2011 sales

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Bank-owned homes and short sales last year accounted for the smallest slice of overall sales in three years but still made up nearly a quarter of all U.S. homes sold in 2011.

March 01, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Qualifying for $500K home-sale tax break

DEAR BENNY: My husband and I each have a trust, and our house is in my trust. We have lived in this house for 14 years. If we were to sell it, would we qualify for the $500,000 tax exemption? I understand each person is permitted $250,000, and a couple twice that amount. Does my trust make a difference, and if so, what should we do? --Arlene

March 01, 2012 | by BENNY L. KASS Inman News | HOME SCENE


‘Daylighting' improvements for homes

If your home will be on the market this spring, you're probably looking for every possible edge that will make it stand out to potential buyers. But even if you're staying put, you still want to make your home as attractive and valuable as your budget will allow.

March 01, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


SJ Master Gardeners offer free workshops

The free monthly workshop program offered by the San Joaquin Master Gardeners at the Manteca Public Library is making a comeback following its initial successful run last year.

February 24, 2012 | Rose Albano Risso | HOME SCENE


Oakwood Shores making big splash with lifestyle, price & lakefront access

The next best thing in Manteca housing is here: Oakwood Shores.

February 24, 2012 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


Watchdog: Limit Fannie, Freddie legal fees more

WASHINGTON (AP) - The U.S. government regulator for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac must do a better job limiting legal expenses paid by the two mortgage giants to their former executives facing lawsuits, a new watchdog report says.

February 23, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Rethinking the yard in drought-stricken regions

LUBBOCK, Texas (AP) - Texans watched disaster unfold slowly last year as a historic drought took a withering toll across the region.

February 23, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Some money from mortgage settlement to be diverted

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - The ink wasn't even dry on a settlement with the nation's top mortgage lenders when Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon laid claim to a chunk of the money to avert a huge budget cut for public colleges and universities.

February 23, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Good economic news continues to trickle out

The economic recovery was once again reinforced last week with the majority of data continuing to point towards growth. Retail Sales rose a solid .7% showing that consumers are continuing to increase spending long after the holiday season has ended.

February 23, 2012 | By DEBORAH ROMERO Special to the Bulletin | HOME SCENE


Rising sales point to better year for housing

WASHINGTON (AP) - The housing market is flashing signs of health ahead of the spring-buying season.

February 23, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Rate on 30-year mortgage rises to 3.95%

WASHINGTON (AP) - The average rate on the 30-year fixed mortgage jumped after standing pat for three straight weeks at record lows. But the rate stayed below 4 percent for the 12th straight week, keeping home-buying and refinancing attractive for those who can qualify.

February 23, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Seniors: Avoid lump-sum mortgage payoff

DEAR BENNY: I am 74 and recently have been contemplating paying off my condo mortgage. The remainder of the mortgage is $98,000 at 6 percent. Can you help me through this? On the surface it seems like a good idea, but I'm not aware of all the particulars. I am in good health and will not need the $98,000 in the near future. --Dee Dee

February 23, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Housing agency could run out of money in 2012

WASHINGTON (AP) - The Federal Housing Administration could run out of money over the next year and require a $700 million cash infusion from the Treasury Department to stay afloat, according to the Obama administration's budget request sent Monday to Congress.

February 16, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


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Articles by Section - HOME SCENE


What you should never do remodeling kitchens

Whether you've heard it in the office, a classroom or a soccer field, that old saying about mistakes being valuable learning tools really rings true, doesn't it? If those mistakes occur during the course of a kitchen renovation, however, it may be difficult to be philosophical about them. Bungle a kitchen redesign, and you'll either have to live with the consequences for a long time or invest even more money to correct them.

April 03, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Create the perfect outdoor kitchen space for summer

Now that warmer weather is here, you want to spend as much time outdoors as possible - and that includes mealtime. But what if your outdoor kitchen space is lacking? Worry not! There are several easy, affordable projects that can help you transform the area into the perfect cooking and entertaining area. Give these projects a try to recreate your space.

April 03, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Home prices rise modestly, weigh on buyer affordability

WASHINGTON (AP) - U.S. home prices rose at a steady pace in January, pushing prices up at a faster pace than wages and putting more homes financially out of reach for would-be buyers.

April 03, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Google

MOUNTAIN VIEW (AP) - Of Google gets to build a new office complex north of Highway 101, no one will feel the "Googly" aura of the canopied tech wonderland quite like the people living along Space Park Way.

March 27, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


FHA LOANS: Don’t bite at email, or snail mail loan refinancing offers without exploring options

If you have a FHA backed mortgage there are a lot of people out there convinced you can save hundreds if not thousands of dollars a year if you just call them.

March 27, 2015 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


5 ways to increase curb appeal, value

Whether you're planning to list your home for sale soon or you're simply working to maintain features that attracted you to the charming abode in the first place, careful attention to curb appeal is a must.

March 27, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Maximizing your storage space: Begin in the garage

A recent study found that 50 percent of homeowners claim their garage is the most disorganized place in the home. In addition, The Department of Energy cites 25 percent of people with two-car garages have too much clutter to leave room for cars, while 32 percent only have room for one vehicle. Isn't it time to do something about the mess? This year, focus your efforts on maximizing storage space in the garage.

March 27, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Realtors oppose ridgeline development

INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. (AP) - Two leading Realtor boards have come out against future ridgeline development in the Lake Tahoe Basin.

March 27, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Existing home sales rebound slightly in February

WASHINGTON (AP) - Slightly more Americans bought homes in February, but tight inventories, affordability problems and nasty winter weather point to sluggish sales in the coming few months.

March 27, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


New home sales surge in February

WASHINGTON (AP) - Sales of new U.S. homes in February climbed to their fastest pace in seven years, as an otherwise dormant housing market showed fresh signs of life.

March 27, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Add quality & comfort to your favorite rooms

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

March 27, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Rate on 30-year loan falls to 3.69%

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average long-term U.S. mortgage rates fell this week for a second straight week, edging closer to historically low levels at the start of the spring home-buying season.

March 27, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Lotusland

MONTECITO . (AP) - Ganna Walska, a wealthy Polish opera singer, created the Lotusland garden in her own likeness - beautiful, eccentric, intelligent, quixotic, romantic, spiritual - on a private estate here about 100 miles north of Los Angeles.

March 20, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


ENERGY-EFFICIENT

Did you know it takes just one afternoon to save money on your utility bills? Take on a few easy DIY projects this weekend to see immediate savings while making your home more comfortable and environmentally friendly for the long term. As hot months quickly approach, now is the perfect time to improve your home's energy efficiency and set the stage for a cool, comfortable home this summer.

March 20, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Projects: Spruce up your home

Warmer weather and sunnier days are on their way and many homeowners are itching to begin home improvement projects. If you are one of them, consider these areas of your home when prepping for spring.

March 20, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


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