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Archive By Section - 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


Fannie Mae names Mayopoulos as new CEO

WASHINGTON (AP) - Timothy Mayopoulos, the general counsel of Fannie Mae, will be the next CEO of the government-controlled mortgage giant.

June 07, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


30-year mortgage drops to record-low 3.67%

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average U.S. rates on 30-year and 15-year fixed mortgages this week fell to fresh record lows for the sixth straight week. Cheap mortgages continue to help boost prospects for home sales this year.

June 07, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Dangers of downsizing to cut debt

DEAR BENNY: I am 58 years old and married. My total household income is less than $50,000. I have no mortgage; however, I do have a line of credit with $130,000 owed.

June 07, 2012 | By BENNY L. KASS Inman News | HOME SCENE


Top kitchen upgrades

Nowhere else in the home must design and function marry as harmoniously as in the kitchen. The most-used room in the house is also the one where we spend the most work and leisure time, the one that gets the most scrutiny from potential buyers and the spot where most renovation dollars get spent.

June 07, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Foreclosure mess is slowly improving older Manteca housing stock

Here's a silver lining to the foreclosure crisis: There's anecdotal evidence it is leading to the improvement of older housing stock in Manteca.

June 01, 2012 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


Remodeling your home? Start from outside in

The kitchen and bathroom are at the top of most home remodeling project lists. But homeowners intent on remodeling should also consider investing in the exterior of their homes - maybe even start there.

May 31, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Sales contracts for homes dropped in April

WASHINGTON (AP) - A gauge of Americans who signed contracts to buy homes fell in April from nearly a two-year high in the previous month.

May 31, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Curb appeal via outdoor painting projects

Summer is finally here, and with warmer temperatures and longer days, it's the perfect time to brighten up your home with a few outdoor painting projects. You can add the right amount of color and increase your curb appeal in just one weekend, leaving you the rest of the season to enjoy the finished product.

May 31, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Sales of foreclosure homes rose in 1Q

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Homes in some stage of the foreclosure process saw their share of overall U.S. home sales grow in the first quarter even as sales of bank-owned homes fell.

May 31, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Federal flood insurance gets 60-day extension

WASHINGTON (AP) - Congress has given itself two more months to come up with long-term solutions for the debt-burdened federal program that provides insurance for homes and businesses in areas subject to flooding.

May 31, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Understanding ‘stepped-down’ tax basis

DEAR BENNY: You frequently write about the stepped-up basis when a property is inherited. In today's market, however, you may find the reverse situation.

May 31, 2012 | By Benny L. Kass Inman News | HOME SCENE


Our love affair with wood

Wood is one of the oldest building materials we know, and one of the most beloved. It's a love affair that has lasted - like hardwood itself - through the centuries, from the log cabins of earliest America into the early 21st century.

May 31, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Add tasty edible plants to your landscape

Window boxes overflowing with blooms, decorative pots lining the driveway with striking colors, and even a flowering vine climbing up the mailbox - the growing season have arrived, and it is time to decorate the landscape.

May 25, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


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Articles by Section - HOME SCENE


Tips to prepare windows & doors for winter to save

How much do you spend on utilities? Are you looking for ways to save? A typical American household spends about $2,100 on energy bills each year, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Most of that expense comes from a home's energy use during the winter heating season. But a quick home checkup can help you can reduce these costs, prepare for winter and enjoy energy savings.

October 17, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Average 30-year mortgage rate at 3.97 %

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average U.S. mortgage rates tumbled this week. The 30-year loan hit its lowest level since June 2013 as Treasury bond yields marked new lows amid concern over global economic weakness.

October 17, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Ideas to bring Halloween decor back from the dead

Halloween has its fair share of iconic symbols: ghosts, witches, mummies and pumpkins, just to name a few. But if your home decor is becoming just as iconic, it may be time to change it up and take your decorating in a new direction.

October 17, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Home sales rise in September

SAN DIEGO (AP) - California home sales rose for the first time in a year in September, a research firm said Tuesday, as cooling prices and a strong economy encouraged buyers.

October 17, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


From make-do to all new: Create your dream kitchen

Homeowners have spent more on kitchen remodeling than any other home improvement category in the last 10 years, according to Harvard's Joint Center for Housing Studies - and there's good reason. An updated kitchen does more than boost the value of your home; whether you make just a few changes or completely renovate the entire space, a kitchen that feels new is always refreshing. From basic cooking to frequent entertaining, your dream kitchen should look good and function well.

October 17, 2014 | | HOME SCENE


Apartments pushed up September homebuilding

WASHINGTON (AP) - Construction firms broke ground on more apartment complexes in September, pushing up the pace of U.S. homebuilding.

October 17, 2014 | | 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


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