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Archive By Section - HOME SCENE


Buying a home: prepare by getting finances in order

For those considering buying a home, the current real estate market presents some unique opportunities. One of the side effects of the economic roller coaster ride of the past few years is that home prices have gone down and more homes have gone on the market. For buyers, that means more choices and better deals. However, those same tumultuous years also can also teach buyers a lesson: Make smart buying decisions and be wise with your finances.

July 05, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Bathroom remodeling ideas that add style, space

Now, more than ever, homeowners are adding to the value and comfort of their homes by renovating bathrooms into private retreats with luxurious touches that rival those of an upscale spa or resort.

July 05, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Construction spending rose 0.9 percent in May

WASHINGTON (AP) - A surge in homebuilding pushed U.S. construction spending up by the largest amount in five months, the latest indication that the housing sector is slowly recovering.

July 05, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Fixed mortgage rates fall to new record lows

WASHINGTON (AP) - Fixed U.S. mortgage rates fell again to new record lows, providing prospective buyers with more incentive to brave a modestly recovering housing market.

July 05, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Rights when boyfriend dies without a will

DEAR BENNY: My mother and her boyfriend lived together for 18 years. He owned the house by himself. He has two surviving adult children. He always told me he wanted my mom to have everything. He did not have a close relationship to his children.

July 05, 2012 | By BENNY L. KASS Inman News | HOME SCENE


Eclectic design trends breathe new life into your rooms & home

The newest interior design trends are invoking a playful vibe into rooms by mixing and matching different styles for an eclectic, fun look. According to "ELLE Decor," home decorating is shifting toward a more theatrical and eclectic decorating style highlighting richer colors, layers of textures and patterns and a fusion of time periods, styles and atmosphere.

July 05, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


$235,000 in Manteca 7 years ago bought a small house on an alley

Spend $235,000 today to buy a home in Manteca and you can get a new home of about 1,500 square feet with the latest built-in energy efficiencies.

June 29, 2012 | Dennis Wyatt | HOME SCENE


Big US cities boom as young adults shun suburbs

WASHINGTON (AP) - For the first time in a century, most of America's largest cities are growing at a faster rate than their surrounding suburbs as young adults seeking a foothold in the weak job market shun home-buying and stay put in bustling urban centers.

June 28, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Energy-saving tips for every room in the house

Keeping your home beautiful, organized and running smoothly is a never-ending task. The chores from the kitchen unfold into the dining room, which spills into the living room, the bedrooms, bathrooms, laundry room and beyond. Once you've added it all up, the amount of time and energy you spend on housework - day to day and year to year - is staggering.

June 28, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Contracts to buy homes rise, match two-year high

WASHINGTON (AP) - Americans signed more contracts to buy previously occupied homes in May, matching the fastest pace in two years. The increase suggests home sales will rise this summer and the modest housing recovery will continue.

June 28, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Appraisal fee can be challenged

DEAR BENNY: I have a question regarding a refinance. We had several unsuccessful attempts with two mortgage brokers because our house is located in a risky ZIP code and the appraiser said that he was unable to get two comps to complete the deal. Finally, we found another bank who said "no problem" right off the bat.

June 28, 2012 | By BENNY L. KASS Inman News | HOME SCENE


Easy exterior projects that add lasting beauty to your home

In the current economy, homeowners want to improve their home's exterior while saving time, labor and money. You can enhance your lifestyle by choosing options that extend product performance and add beauty and enjoyment to outdoor living.

June 28, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Builders start more single-family homes

WASHINGTON (AP) - U.S. builders started work on more single-family homes in May and requested the most permits to build homes and apartments in three and a half years. The increase suggests the housing market is slowly recovering even as other areas of the economy have weakened.

June 21, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Signs that termites might be invading your house

Termites live to eat. Their hunger causes $5 billion worth of damage each year in the U.S., damage most homeowner's insurance doesn't cover. In fact, a colony can devour a foot of 2-by-4 wood in only six months. And since termites are masters at going undetected, they can destroy entire support beams before you discover their presence. That's why it's so important to know what to look for.

June 21, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


Home sales slipped 1.5 percent in May

WASHINGTON (AP) - Americans bought fewer homes in May than April, suggesting a sluggish job market could threaten a modest recovery in housing.

June 21, 2012 | | HOME SCENE


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Articles by Section - HOME SCENE


CEILINGS

Want to infuse your home with architectural interest? Start at the top.

February 27, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Signed contracts rise to 18-month high

WASHINGTON (AP) - The number of Americans signing contracts to buy homes rose at a healthy pace in January, a sign that home sales are poised to accelerate after a slow start to the year.

February 27, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Rate on 30-year mortgage rises to 3.8%

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average long-term U.S. mortgage rates have edged up for a third straight week while remaining near their historically low levels reached in May 2013.

February 27, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


New home sales fall slightly during January

WASHINGTON (AP) - Sales of new U.S. homes were basically flat in January, evidence that recent job gains and relatively low mortgage rates have yet to spur the real estate market.

February 27, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Add a signature style to your home

To satisfy homeowners seeking to add a signature style to their indoor living spaces, more and more design professionals and builders are going back to basics and rediscovering the versatility, durability and good looks of cypress.

February 27, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Home sales plunge 4.9 percent in January

WASHINGTON (AP) - U.S. home sales struck a snow drift in January, plunging to the slowest pace in nine months.

February 27, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Energy guzzlers greener

For the first time in six years, Energy Star certification, a standard seal of approval for energy efficiency, has been expanded to include another major household appliance.

February 20, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Tips for replacing water heaters

Some 37 million residential water heaters gave up the ghost and were replaced over the past five years, according to estimates by the U.S. Department of Energy. While some things get better with age, water heaters aren't among them. In fact, the average life expectancy for a new water heater is 10 to 15 years, with the occasional stoic dinosaur making it two decades or more.

February 20, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


A stunning backsplash without the whiplash

The kitchen is the heart of the home and a top-selling feature with homebuyers. Does yours convey style and functionality? Whether you've just completed a remodel or you're looking for ways to upgrade your existing kitchen, a tile backsplash will instantly transform the space into an eye-catching masterpiece.

February 20, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


6 steps to select best remodeling contractor

A remodeling project is one of the most invigorating lifestyle changes a homeowner can make. However, trusting a contractor with both your home and your money can feel overwhelming. Spare your time, money and sanity by following these steps for choosing the best remodeling contractor:

February 20, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Central Valley group names Realtors, Affiliate of the Year

Every year the Central Valley Association of Realtors recognizes members who have gone above and beyond in the real estate profession and community service. This year CVAR named two recipients as Realtor of the Year - Shelly Bell and Larry Rumbeck - and as Affiliate of the Year, the honor goes to Taylor Phillips.

February 20, 2015 | Staff reports | HOME SCENE


Rate on 30-year loans rises to 3.76%

WASHINGTON (AP) - Average long-term U.S. mortgage rates have risen for a second straight week yet remained near historically low levels.

February 20, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Rents rise overall but dip in Chicago & Minneapolis

WASHINGTON (AP) - U.S. home rental prices rose at a steady rate in January, but prices barely budged or even dipped in parts of the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic.

February 20, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


Millennials seek tech-ready, smaller energy-efficient houses

LOS GATOS - As millennials enter the home-buying market in larger numbers, builders say homes will get a little smaller, energy-efficient appliances and laundry rooms will be essential, and home technology will become increasingly prevalent. These predictions are based on two surveys conducted by the National Association of Home Builders, one asking home builders what features they are most likely to include in a typical new home this year, and one asking millennials what features are most likely to affect their home-buying decisions. Of the top 10 features mentioned by home builders, four have to do with energy efficiency: low-E windows ...

February 20, 2015 | | HOME SCENE


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