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Archive By Section - HOME SCENE


Deposit should be big enough to deter ‘buyer’s remorse’

DEAR BENNY: Some states such as California have a 3 percent limit to deposit recovery; buyers have the right, if they legally back out of a contract, to secure a full return of up to a 3 percent deposit. Any deposit over 3 percent is not refundable. In California, I have never seen a deposit over 3 percent. --Joe

July 26, 2012 | By BENNY L. KASS Inman News | HOME SCENE


Secrets to successful outdoor entertaining

What makes an outdoor party great? It's simple: Keep guests comfortable.

July 26, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Flat tops to McMansions

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

July 20, 2012 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


California home prices climb 8 percent in June

SAN DIEGO (AP) - California home prices rose sharply last month to the highest levels in more than two years, a research firm said Wednesday.

July 19, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Young earns short sale designation to help owners in danger of foreclosure

Brad Young of PMZ Real Estate in Manteca has earned the prestigious Certified Distressed Property Expert (CDPE) designation, having completed extensive training in foreclosure avoidance, with a particular emphasis on short sales.

July 19, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Request a payment plan for unpaid condo dues

DEAR BENNY: I need to write a "request for payment plan" letter to my homeowners association, but I don't know how to write an effective one. I owe several months of back dues totaling about $3,000, which includes attorney's fees and interest. I really need help on writing this letter. I have not paid because of major health issues in 2011 to date. --Liz

July 19, 2012 | By BENNY L. KASS Inman News | HOME SCENE


Housing confidence picks up five years after collapse

WASHINGTON (AP) - Americans are regaining confidence in the housing market five years after it collapsed.

July 19, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


How low can they go? 30-year mortgage now at record low 3.53%

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average rates on fixed mortgages fell again this week to record lows, creating more incentive for buyers to enter the recovering housing market.

July 19, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Foreclosure hits older Americans harder than most

WASHINGTON (AP) - More than 1.5 million older Americans already have lost their homes, with millions more at risk as the national housing crisis takes its toll on those who are among the worst positioned to weather the storm, a new AARP report says.

July 19, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Now’s the time to put safeguards in against new home flipping

Looking back at flipping in 2005 it is amazing that the housing market collapse wasn't worse.

July 12, 2012 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


USDA spends millions to stimulate rural housing ownership numbers

BEMIDJI, Minn. (AP) - Kjell Thompson has long dreamed of owning her own home, but until recently she thought it out of her reach.

July 12, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Cook up a whole new look for your kitchen is easy

We spend hours in the kitchen socializing, keeping the family organized, and, of course, cooking and eating. As the center of the home's activities, the kitchen should be as fun as it is functional. With just a few supplies and a free weekend, you can cook up a whole new look for your kitchen.

July 12, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Daring creativity blooms in floral decor

A little black dress, a great pair of jeans and a leather jacket - some styles never go out of fashion. Some elements of home decor share that same sense of timelessness, and none more so than a simple floral theme.

July 12, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


No limit to amount HOAs can charge

DEAR BENNY: My homeowners association fees are of great concern to me, since I am on a limited income. The monthly fees are $399, and this, combined with my mortgage payments of nearly $1,400, creates a burden. I have been a widow since 1973 and am, of course, a "retired" senior with no retirement income benefits.

July 12, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Upgrading to your dream home

The real estate market is still in a state of limbo, which has many homeowners staying in place and looking for ways to make their current abode the most comfortable it can be. Real estate agents expect the market to continue to be flat in 2012, according to ActiveRain Corp, a real estate social network. Because they're not selling, homeowners are looking at remodeling rooms, changing out decorating schemes and in some cases, even adding on to the home.

July 12, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


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Articles by Section - HOME SCENE


Forward-looking luxury in renovation trends

Americans are renovating again, and instead of letting resale value alone drive their renovation choices, in 2014 homeowners are weighing many more factors. They are seeking renovations that are beautiful, luxurious and eco-friendly, and that both enhance resale value and their ability to age in place should they choose not to sell down the road.

October 10, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


KEY HELP

If you are a first-time homebuyer defined as someone who hasn't owned a home in the last three years you could be eligible for $6,500 in interest free down payment assistance.

October 10, 2014 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


Mortgage rates down 3rd straight week

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average U.S. mortgage rates fell for the third straight week, making it more affordable to borrow to buy a home.

October 10, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


How to keep your family safe from home’s hidden hazards

In the U.S. alone, approximately 60 million people suffer from asthma and allergies, which according to the American Lung Association can be triggered by mold for those who are allergic. As a responsible homeowner, it's essential to be aware of the many threats, such as mold and fire, which may cause harm to your family and your investment.

October 10, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Easy ways to warm up your space this winter

Cooler temperatures are on the horizon and now is the ideal time to begin checking items off your seasonal to-do list. Complete simple projects before the harsh winter weather arrives so your home is ready to enjoy in the coming season.

October 10, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Slower growth for US home prices in August

WASHINGTON (AP) - U.S. home prices increased in August, yet the pace of these gains continues to slow, helping to improve affordability for would-be buyers.

October 10, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Building your memories around outdoor fire pit

Whether you're spending quality time with family or entertaining guests, few things compare to the cozy, warm and welcoming atmosphere created by a fire pit in the backyard. In fact, fire pits are among the most popular features for enhancing an outdoor living space, according to the 2014 Residential Landscape Architecture Trends Survey conducted by the American Society of Landscape Architects. Even better, with little experience and materials, you can build a fire pit in just a few hours.

October 10, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


EXODUS TO EXURBS

The oil boom and skyrocketing housing prices west of the Altamont Pass are setting the stage for a 21st century Grapes of Wrath migration.

October 03, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Sink into these top tub trends for ultimate bathing experience

The tub tucked away in your home's master bathroom is so much more than a place to get clean. It's a calming refuge and therapeutic retreat after a busy, high-pressure day. Tub trends indicate that bathtubs are primarily used for soaking, while shower time is mainly for cleansing. The soaking tub has become the destination for relaxation amid today's fast-paced lifestyles.

October 03, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Simple steps for organized & sensational garage space

Move over kitchens and bathrooms, homeowners are focusing on a new part of the home: the garage. No longer just a place to park the car and lawn equipment, today's garages are getting bigger and better. Here are a few quick and easy projects to create a useful and organized garage.

October 03, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Smart, stylish solutions keep entire home cool

Don't sweat it if your home doesn't have central air-conditioning. Whether you live in an older house that can't accommodate ductwork, or you don't want to sacrifice your interior aesthetics with an unattractive air conditioning unit, you can still keep your home feeling - and looking - cool this summer with advanced air conditioning technology.

October 03, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Average 30-year mortgage rate at 4.19%

WASHINGTON (AP) - A key long-term U.S. mortgage rate dipped this week, the second drop after a large increase two weeks ago.

October 03, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Pet-proofing your home in preparation for adopting

The addition of a new pet to the family is always a cause for celebration. Stress can occur, too, no matter how welcome the new addition. When you're thinking about adopting a pet from an animal shelter, some preparation can help ensure he or she is as safe and happy as possible.

October 03, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Keep winter energy bills in check

As winter temperatures drop, the potential for higher utility bills goes up. Taking steps ahead of the cold season can help you trim costs and make your home more energy efficient, keeping those utility bills in check even as the winter weather rages.

October 03, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Mini-makeovers deliver big home value return

Kitchen and bathroom remodeling projects can significantly add comfort, improve functionality and increase the home's resale value. Whichever reason drives homeowners to complete an improvement project, they need to pick one that also delivers a return on investment.

October 03, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


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