Mark Ross's Blog Posts

Halloween 2020 Will Feature Rare Blue Moon And Daylight Saving Time

In a series of bizarre things happening in 2020, add a rare blue hunter’s moon on Halloween to that list.If you’re outside on this spooky night, don’t expect to look up and see a blue tinted

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The Biggest Myths About Moving To The Suburbs

For generations, people have been drawn to big-city life by the irresistible lure of career opportunities, cultural riches, and the sheer excitement of rubbing shoulders with hundreds of thousands

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Home Price Index Sees Greatest Gain In Over 2 Years

The S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller index of home prices in 19* U.S. cities rose 5.7% in August from a year ago, the greatest year-over-year gain since 2018, driven unsurprisingly by tightened supply

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6 Home Upgrades Buyers Want In The COVID19 Era

If you imagined 2020 was the year you would finally list your house for sale, you may have hit the brakes on those plans when the coronavirus pandemic arrived.But now, we’re more than six months

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Builder Confidence Breaks Previous 35 Year Record High

The National Association of Home Builders and Wells Fargo Housing Market Index rose two points to 85 in October – the highest score the series has ever recorded since its inception 35 years ago

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7 Simple Renovations To Coronavirus Proof Your Home

As much as we all wish we could go back to a time when social distancing was a foreign concept and masks were just something you wore with a Halloween costume, it’s clear by now that COVID-19’

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The Forbearance Crash Bros Spoke Too Soon

The health and economic crisis has made 2020 a horrific year for many Americans. Added to all that misery we had terrible fires in the West and hurricanes in the East.  From my perspective,

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Luxury Home Sales Rise Over 41 Percent Making Biggest Jump Since 2013

In the largest increase since 2013, luxury home sales rose 41.5% in the third quarter, according to a new report from Redfin.While sales in this segment of the housing market have skyrocketed, the

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As Home Prices Increase Sellers Have The Upper Hand

For the second consecutive month, Fannie Mae’s Home Purchase Sentiment Index, a composite index designed to track consumers’ desire to sell or buy a home, gained 3.5 points in September to 81

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8 Kitchen Remodel Costs To Consider

You may be planning for a major kitchen renovation, including new appliances, plumbing, countertops or cabinets. Instead, you may be aiming to spruce up the space with a smaller budget. A kitchen

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How The Pandemic Is Helping Some Millennials Realize Their Home Buying Dreams

This year's coronavirus pandemic and the accompanying recession have turned a lot of people's financial plans upside down. But those millennials who've been lucky enough to hang onto their jobs are

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8 Outdoor Projects You Can And Should Do Over Fall And Winter

If you weren't one of the bajillion people jumping on the quarantine garden trend these past few months, you might think your chances of producing a plentiful bounty in your own backyard have

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8 Fall Maintenance Tasks You Really Should Do Before The First Frost

Ah, fall: The nip of the first chill in the air. The colorful foliage. The pumpkin spice lattes. The pumpkin spice everything.Oh yeah, and the long list of home maintenance tasks awaiting you at the

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Pending Home Sales At An All Time High

Riddle me this: How can home sales grow when we have no homes to buy?When a monthly home sales print fails to meet expectations the excuse often used is that inventory is too low to meet the demand.

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US Home Price Growth Picks Up Pace Amid Pandemic Buying Rush

Home-price growth began accelerating in July, a sign that the slowdown in home prices caused by the coronavirus pandemic may be reversing.The S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller National Home Price Index,

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Housing Market Stays Hot Into Fall With Mortgage Applications Up Nearly 7 Percent

Despite mortgage ratesrising slightly from a previous all-time low, mortgage applications gained 6.8% last week, according to a report from the Mortgage Bankers Association.The refinance index

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5 Rampant Mortgage Myths You Will Hear These Days

These days, things are changing so fast, it’s tough to keep up. That’s especially true in the mortgage industry, where interest rates and the overall home loan landscape are shifting with such

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Why Buyers Are Willing To Waive Their Home Inspections Right Now

By the time my husband and I put in an offer on a home (for the third time) in August, we were exhausted by the home-buying process—and we hadn't even bought a home yet.Even in the midsize town in

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Homeowners Gain Over 620 Billion In Equity In Second Quarter

U.S. homeowners with mortgages witnessed a 6.6% year-over-year increase in their equity in the second quarter of 2020 – representing a cumulative gain of $620 billion for the nation and an$

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More Young Adults Live At Home Now Than During The Great Depression

While at the beginning of the year it seemed like Millennials and Generation Z were going to take hold of the housing market in 2020, the pandemic drastically changed that prediction.For the first

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How To Make Your Home Office Space A Huge Selling Point

It's been six months since many of us were last in the office, tapping away on our ergonomic keyboards and drawing on whiteboards in conference rooms during (gasp!) in-person meetings.Since then, we

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The Refinancing Boom Is Just Getting Started

Even with refinancings driving a record $1.1 trillion in originations in the second quarter and testing the limits of lenders’ capacity, LOs, mortgage executives and economists say all the

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US Mortgage Rates Fall To All Time Lows This Week

Average mortgage rates for 30-year and 15-year mortgages fell to all-time lows this week, Freddie Mac said in a report on Thursday.The 30-year average is 2.86%, breaking the prior low of 2.88% set

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How To Set Up Your Utilities

Preparations for your move to a new home are underway and you’re starting to pack, get rid of items you don’t need and schedule movers. But you’re not ready to move until you’ve set up your

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Mortgage Lending Sets A 20 Year Record With Over 1 Trillion Dollars In Q2

U.S. lenders issued a staggering $1.1 trillion in home loans between April and June, marking the biggest quarter in at least two decades, according to mortgage data firm Black Knight. The record

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What Is Title Insurance

Buying a home often entails also buying various types of insurance to protect your property, and one type you might need to get is called title insurance.So what is title insurance? When you buy a

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Why Is The Housing Market Thriving In A Pandemic

The deadliest pandemic in more than a century has failed to derail the housing market because of the lowest mortgage rates ever recorded coupled with a shift in how people use their homes.“The

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Whats The Difference Between A Deed And Title

As you approach closing day for your home purchase, you’re going to hear a lot of discussion about the deed and title of your property. Both are an important part of owning real estate, but it can

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FHFA Extends Foreclosure And Eviction Moratorium For A Third Time To Dec 31

Four days ahead of its previous expiration date, the Federal Housing Finance Agency extended its moratorium on foreclosures and evictions for borrowers with mortgages backed by Fannie Mae and

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Should You Add A Mother In Law Suite To Your Home

A mother-in-law suite is a private living space that is either attached or separated from a larger home but on the same property. As the name suggests, it can be used by the parents of the,

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5 Things To Ignore On A Home Tour

Whether you are house hunting in the suburbs or searching for an apartment in the city, there is an endless supply of information to take in and evaluate before you decide to submit an offer. This

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Existing Home Sales Soar At A Record Pace In July As Americans Make Up For Lost Time

The numbers: Sales of previously-owned homes in the U.S. rose 24.7% between June and July to a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of 5.86 million, the National Association of Realtors reported Friday

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Fannie Mae Freddie Mac Forbearance Rate Drops Below 5 Percent

The forbearance rate for mortgages backed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac dropped to 4.94% in the first week of August, the first time it’s been below 5% since April, the Mortgage Bankers

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The Ultimate Guide To Equity

EQUITY IS A TERM USED in different contexts within business and investing, as well as in real estate and marketing.There are different types of equity that represent various classes of ownership or

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The Secrets To Furnishing A Smaller Home

For nearly 16 years, Beverly Willett lived with her husband and two daughters in what was her dream home: a four-story, 4,000-square-foot brownstone in Brooklyn, N.Y. But sometimes when life,

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Mortgage Applications Remain Steady Amid Continued Economic Stress

After three weeks of increases, mortgage applications fell 0.8% last week as mortgage rates continued to sit near record lows, according to a report by the Mortgage Bankers Association.The

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US Homeownership Rate Soars To An Almost 12 Year High

The U.S. homeownership rate soared to an almost 12-year high in the second quarter as low interest rates allowed more Americans to qualify for mortgages.The homeownership rate jumped to 67.9%, the

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How To Welcome Butterflies And Entice Them To Stay In Your Garden

A monarch butterfly at the butterfly house at the Elkton Community Education Center and along the Umpqua River.Terry Richard/StaffFragile, beautiful and fascinating, butterflies flutter their way

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HEROES Vs HEALS Act And What They Would Mean For Housing

The HEROES Act, a bill introduced and passed by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) in May, could be signed this week, offering homeowners and renters much-needed relief in light of the COVID-19

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5 Tricks To Rejuvenate A Run Down Patio On A Budget

Oh, your poor, sad patio. Not a comfy seat to be had, and that cracked concrete . . . well, it probably looked really great when disco was king. Whether you love to entertain friends or bask in

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How To DIY Your Own Outdoor Movie Theater

How to DIY Your Own Outdoor Movie TheaterThere’s nothing quite like watching a movie on a big screen, but many of us will be forgoing indoor movie theaters for the immediate future. And while-

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Loans In Forbearance Fall For The Sixth Straight Week

The total number of loans in forbearance fell for the sixth week in a row to 7.74% of servicers’ portfolio volume, according to a report by the Mortgage Bankers Association. As the country braces

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Pending Home Sales Continued To Rebound Across The Country In June

The numbers: The index of pending home sales rose 16.6% in June as compared with May, the National Association of Realtors reported Wednesday.The increase comes after pending home sales experienced

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If COVID19 Closed Your Pool Or Gym Can You Skip Paying HOA Fees

Buying a home in a community with a homeowners association comes with many perks—such as a maintenance crew to take care of the lawn, gym, swimming pool, or other shared areas enjoyed by HOA

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Buying A Fixer Upper Vs Buying New

You have a lot of decisions to make when choosing what home to buy: where you’re going to live, the size of the home and the amount of work you're willing to put into it.You may want to move in

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Why Aging In Place At Home Matters Now More Than Ever

Creating a safe, accessible, and comfortable living environment is something everyone can relate to these days, whether it's having a convenient work-from-home station or finding cost-efficient ways

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11 Exterior Things You Shouldnt Miss During A Home Video Tour

In the age of coronavirus, video tours are quickly becoming the go-to alternative to in-person tours. But for prospective buyers, there's more to the process than asking your smartphone-wielding

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Everything You Need To Know About Washing Your Face Mask

In an age of misinformation, something as simple as cleaning a cloth face mask can become incredibly confusing. What should you use to clean it? How should you clean it, and how often?We’ve likely

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7 Summer Maintenance Musts

Taking care of your home this season isn’t just about getting in on all those trending summer looks and beautifying the backyard. It’s also about getting all those dreaded seasonal maintenance

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What To Do If Your Mortgage Forbearance Is Ending Soon

Millions of Americans struggling to make their monthly mortgage payments because of COVID-19 have received relief through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act.But mortgage

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How To Stave Off An Infestation

That lone ant roaming the kitchen counter may not seem like a big deal. Maybe it's even kind of cute. But think again.A few random ants can actually mean a major problem if not treated at the:

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8 Outdoor DIY Projects That Will Add Serious Charm To Your Yard This Summer

With your backyard being the new summer hangout, it’s about time to spruce it up. But what if your budget is already stretched tight?Well, if you don't mind getting your hands a bit dirty, we've

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How To Look Up The History Of Your Home

The anxiety of buying a new home can form in any number of ways, and you might find yourself questioning the property you’ve chosen: Is the backyard really that small? Is the soil contaminated

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3 MoneySaving LastMinute Tax Tips For Homeowners

It's heeeere: tax time.Granted, this year, the coronavirus pandemic prompted the Internal Revenue Service to extend the usual April 15 deadline to July 15. That might have seemed like plenty of

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Use Succession Planting For A Thriving Garden

Want your new vegetable garden to survive—and even thrive? You might need to start thinking hard about succession. And no, we're not talking about corporate dynasties, or even the buzzy show on.

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Larger Homes In The US Are Making A Comeback

For the past several years, the trend among many luxury homebuyers in the U.S. has been clear: bigger isn’t necessarily better.Buyers who could easily have sprung for sprawling estates have

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The Guide To Buying A Home Sight Unseen

In April, after Virginia enacted a stay-at-home order due to the spread of the coronavirus, Ruth Boyer O'Dea found herself alone in a three-floor, five-bedroom residence in Arlington listed for a

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How To Renovate A House

There’s a good chance you have home improvement plans in the near future, whether you just closed on a fixer-upper or you’re looking to update the house you’ve lived in for 20 years.A well

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The Dos And Donts Of Buying Vacant Land

Finding your dream home isn’t easy. You'll spend a lot of time to scouring online listings, attending open houses and scoping out neighborhoods – and you may still come up empty-handed.Maybe

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6 Curb Appeal Tricks To Attract Buyers During Coronavirus

Curb appeal: It's the make-or-break first impression of your home. It either beckons a second look or turns buyers off entirely. And now, in the age of the coronavirus, curb appeal is more vital

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Celebrate Dad With These 7 Unique Fathers Day Activities You Can Do At Home

Graduations, birthdays, and holiday celebrations look a little different this year due to the novel coronavirus pandemic. OK, a lot different. Virtual events have filled the gaps, of course, but it

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8 Mistakes People Make Trying To Kill Weeds

Whether you've planted vegetables or flowers in your yard lately, you've likely noticed some dismaying intruders: weeds.Whether they're dandelions, bindweed, spurge, or some other growth, weeds rob

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6 Things Your Mortgage Lender Wants You To Know About Getting A Home Loan During COVID19

Getting a mortgage, paying your mortgage, refinancing your mortgage: These are all major undertakings, but during a pandemic, all of it becomes more complicated. Sometimes a lot more complicated.But

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The Summer Home Buying Season May Be Much Hotter Than Expected

Until recently, the prognosis for the housing market wasn't great. With the economy in a free fall, home sellers swiftly took down their "For Sale" signs and many buyers chose to wait out the

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Home Prices Are Still Rising

Those hoping the coronavirus-fueled recession will bring another round of bargain-basement real estate prices are likely out of luck.Even with the pandemic raging, a battered economy, and the

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Has The Mortgage Forbearance Curve Flattened

It’s been nearly two months since the number of borrowers who need forbearance on their mortgage began spiking due to coronavirus shutdowns, but it looks like the forbearance curve may be

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Home Office Setup Ideas

Working from home, or WFH, isn't just common in the workforce today – it's increasingly the norm. Companies and employees are realizing that a lot of work can be accomplished without actually

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Guide To Paint Finishes So You Wont Waste Your Money

There’s a basic rule of thumb to follow when choosing paint sheens: The higher the sheen, the higher the shine -- and the higher the shine, the more durable it will be.Flat paint has no shine;-

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Fannie Mae Freddie Mac Say Borrowers In Forbearance Can Defer All Missed Payments Until The End Of T

With nearly 4 million borrowers in forbearance on their mortgage, we still don’t have a complete picture of what happens when forbearance periods end. Borrowers got some clarity on the situation

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Homebuilders Are Now Offering Deals And Incentives On New Construction To Lure Buyers

Mike and Crystal Green couldn’t have picked a worse time to look for a new home. In mid-February, Mike was offered a promotion to be regional sales manager at Chatsworth Products, a computer

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What Happens If I Stop Paying My Mortgage

During the current financial crisis, you may ponder the idea of simply stopping payment on your mortgage. It is an option that some may want to consider in difficult times, but it is a bad decision

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10 Exterior House Painting Rules You Should Never Break

No home improvement project revives, beautifies and protects a house as quickly, effectively and affordably as exterior painting. A new coat of paint can completely transform the look of your home.

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How Did Past Health Scares Affect The Real Estate Market

A month and a half into a national emergency that has shuttered the economy as the U.S. battles with the coronavirus pandemic, the real estate market is already bearing the impacts of the health

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7 Hidden Costs Of Self Isolating At Home During Coronavirus

Those who are fortunate enough to still be collecting a paycheck while quarantined or sheltering in place might expect to build up some serious savings. While you work from home, you're avoiding

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Everything You Need To Know About A Pending Home Sale

Few moments are as exciting for home sellers and homebuyers as when a “sold” badge is added to the For Sale sign in front of your property. But when you drive through neighborhoods, especially

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Why Does My Mortgage Keep Getting Sold

A letter arrives in the mail and tells you your mortgage has been sold. It also informs you to send your monthly payments to a new address. Don’t panic! This happens all the time, and you shouldn

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Spring Cleaning 101

Spring is the perfect time to open up the windows in your house and clean every surface inch, but there’s no reason to spend more time on this task than necessary.Use these tips to quickly get

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Watch Out For These Red Flags If Youre A Homeowner Seeking Forbearance On Your Mortgage

Homeowners are asking for breaks on their mortgage payments in droves, as millions of Americans face the prospect of unemployment or reduced income because of the coronanvirus pandemic. But

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The Home Sellers Guide To Striking The Right Deal Today Despite The Pandemic

The coronavirus crisis has thrown a number of wrinkles into the home-selling process. Stock market fluctuations and job layoffs have some buyers rethinking whether to commit to a property purchase.

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Should You Delay Homebuying During The Coronavirus Pandemic

Is it a good idea, or even possible, to buy a new home, site unseen, during the COVID-19 shelter-in-place lockdown?The adage, “where there is a will, there is a way,” certainly holds true –

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What Is A Force Majeure Clause And What Does It Mean For Mortgages

In French, it means superior force. However, in legalese, the term force majeure refers to a clause that can allow a person or business to extricate themselves from a contract.“In general, it’s

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How Do You Sell A Home Safely During The COVID19 Crisis

Selling a home can be a headache. It often takes longer and costs more than you think, and it can be an emotional drain. That’s in normal times. Selling a home during a pandemic will add a slew of

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Everything You Need To Know About Moving Safely During The Coronavirus Pandemic

Packing up and moving has always been remarkably stressful in and of itself. Moving during the coronavirus pandemic, when everyone across the nation is supposed to be staying put to lower their risk

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How To Conduct A Virtual House Hunt Thats As Good As The Real Thing

If you've been thinking about buying a home for a while, you may have marked your calendar back in the winter to start your house hunt right about now. After all, spring typically kicks off the

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Coronavirus Forcing Home Buyers To Scramble To Close Deals

Real-estate agents are rushing to help home buyers and sellers close pending house sales, as the pandemic poses unprecedented obstacles to a high-touch process traditionally done in person.House

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Americans Are Still Moving

Next week, Daryl and Kathy Storment will be moving about 300 miles west from their home in Eastern Washington, a rural area known for rolling hills and big fields—toward the center of the country

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How Record Unemployment Claims Will Affect The Housing Market

As businesses across the United States have been mandated to close their doors in a desperate effort to slow the spread of COVID-19, people have been losing their jobs left and right. Now, we're

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The Coronavirus Could Hit Mom And Pop Landlords Hard As Tenants Miss Rent Payments

With April 1 right around the corner, residential landlords across the country are waiting to see how bad of a hit they’ll be taking from the coronavirus pandemic.Millions of Americans have lost

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Mortgage Industry Lays Out Its Case For Widespread Coronavirus Emergency Relief

The mortgage industry’s biggest trade and lobbying groups are banding together to push the federal government for widespread relief for all borrowers affected by the coronavirus outbreak in the U.

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How To Homeschool Your Kids And Work At Home Without Going Crazy

Households with two working parents, or a single working parent, have long struggled to balance careers and family time, but at least one thing hasn't been on those parents' plates: school.Now,

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Where Will Mortgage Rates Land

With the economy in near shambles, layoffs becoming widespread, and more of the country under orders to shelter in place to stem the spread of the coronavirus pandemic, historically low mortgage

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12 Places To Clean In Your Home To Prevent The Spread Of Illness

Pay attention to high-touch areas of your home – especially those you don't normally disinfect.The COVID-19 virus probably has you spending just about all of your time at home these days, so it

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How Do I Find My Property Lines

Determining property lines can provide you with information for needed legal changes to your home and backyard.You may feel confident that you know your property lines just by looking at your house

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US Suspends Most Foreclosures Amid Coronavirus Uncertainty

There is plenty to worry about as the number of COVID-19 cases in the U.S. ratchets up, a prolonged recession becomes likelier, and more Americans' jobs are in jeopardy. But to ease some of the

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What You Need To Know If You Inherit Real Estate

If you inherit a house, or any other kind of property, you may feel as if you've been thrown into the deep end of real estate ownership. Not only must you deal with the loss of a loved one, but you

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Create An Estate Plan So Your Kids Dont Inherit A Headache

In his lifetime, Kerney Overman Jr. built a thriving construction company, a close-knit family and a charming beach cottage one block off the Atlantic Ocean in North Carolina. But at around age 70,

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Pros Cons And Costs Of A Home Warranty

What is a home warranty? In a nutshell, it's a policy a homeowner pays for that covers the cost of repairing many home appliances if they break down.After all, lots of things you buy come with a

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Mortgage Applications Skyrocket To Highest Level Since 2009 As Rates Tumble

Mortgage applications soared 55% this week from one week prior, and demand for refinances rose to an almost 11-year high, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association.The deluge came after rates

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5 Doable DIY Projects To Send Your Home Equity Soaring

You're going to save money with DIY home improvement projects. Sure, everybody knows that.But did you know how much? Cut professionals out of the equation and you can save half the cost of a-

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Mortgage Rates Reach Lowest Level In Almost 50 Years

Mortgage rates have just dropped to the lowest level in almost 50 years, compelling both homeowners and home buyers to get off the couch to take advantage of record-level savings on their.“

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Here Is What The Feds Surprise Interest Rate Cut Means For Mortgage Rates

The Federal Reserve just cut its benchmark interest rate — but don’t expect lower mortgage rates as a result.The Fed made the rare move to lower the federal funds rate by a half-point to a range

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New Home Sales Soar To Highest Level Since 2007

The numbers: Sales of newly-constructed homes in the U.S. soared 7.9% on a monthly basis in January to a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of 764,000, the government reported Wednesday.That figure

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Become A Superhost By Avoiding These 7 Guest Room Mistakes

If you're lucky enough to have a spare room, in-law suite, or second home, there's a good chance you've considered renting it out. Put a bed in there, post it on Airbnb, and count the cash rolling,

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5 Sweet Tax Deductions When Selling A Home

You may be wondering if there are tax deductions when selling a home. And the answer is: You bet!Sure, you may remember 2018's new tax code—aka the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act—changed some rules for

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6 Reasons Why You Should Look At Homes Outside Your Price Range

When you’re house hunting, budget is everything. It dictates how much home you can reasonably afford, and therefore which homes you look at. After all, you don’t want to end up house poor or

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4 Reasons Why You Probably Still Need A Buyers Agent When Youre Buying A Foreclosure

In a home foreclosure sale, the seller is actually a bank or mortgage lender. In this scenario, the lender has seized a property from the previous owners who were unable to pay their mortgage. Now,

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5 Easy Living Room Projects You Can Master Like A Pro

Maybe it’s been a while since your living room got any love. We get it—it’s easy to get sidetracked by all the different ways you can upgrade your kitchen or bathroom.But the living room has

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Is The Best Time To Sell A House Changing

In mid-January, Kim Colaprete held an open house for a property that had just hit the market in Seattle. With nearly 100 people attending over two days, it was a busy event, says the broker of Team

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How To Find A Reliable Home Contractor

For most homeowners, the hardest part of any home renovation project isn't the work itself – it's finding a competent and reliable contractor to do the job. Installing kitchen cabinets, knocking

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Heres Why Low Rates May Not Help Home Buyers Very Much

Even as mortgage rates hover around five-decade lows, home buyers may still feel the affordability squeeze thanks to rising property values.The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.47% during the

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US Inventory Of Homes For Sale Reaches Record Low

It probably won’t come as a surprise to those in the mortgage business that the fourth quarter of 2019 was a big one, considering that originations continued to rise throughout the year thanks to

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Mortgage Lending Just Had Its Biggest Quarter In 14 Years

It probably won’t come as a surprise to those in the mortgage business that the fourth quarter of 2019 was a big one, considering that originations continued to rise throughout the year thanks to

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Here Are 5 Questions To Ask Yourself Before You Refinance

Mortgage rates are resting near record lows — and that’s spurring a wave of refinancing activity as Americans look to take advantage of the savings a cheaper interest rate could bring.Refinance

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Are You Waiting For House Prices To Drop During The Next Recession To Buy A Home

It’s unclear when the next recession will come. But a recent report argues that when it does the U.S. housing market is unlikely to adversely affected in any major way.Researchers at First

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Three Year Low In Rates Makes 11 MiIllion Mortgages Refi Eligible

A three-year low in the average U.S. rate for a 30-year fixed mortgage pushed the number of “refi eligible” borrowers to 11.3 million, the second-highest on record, according to Black Knight

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How To Really View Your Home As An Investment

HOMEBUYERS ARE typically told that they're making a great investment by purchasing their primary residence.Houses are sold as wealth-building tools – a way to escape "throwing money away" on rent.

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7 Tax Benefits Of Owning A Home With A Complete Guide To Filing In 2020

What are the tax benefits of owning a home? Plenty of homeowners are asking themselves this right around now as they prepare to file their taxes. You may recall the new Tax Cuts and Jobs Act—the

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4 Fast Ways To Declutter Your Home Office To Make 2020 Your Most Productive Year Yet

If you’ve been following our "New Year, Clean House" series, then you know that you're almost done giving your home a refresh. By now, hopefully, you've reclaimed your bed, turned your bathroom

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6 Home Gym Design Mistakes That Can Sabotage Your Workout And Waste Money

Every year, top resolutions for the New Year include working out more and losing weight. Going to the gym is one way to meet these goals. However, a monthly membership can really inflate your.

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The Most Popular Features In Real Estate Listings

Point2 Homes, a real estate listing website, analyzed the language in 1.2 million home listings across the U.S. and came up with the most common phrases.The three most frequently-used feature

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FICO Changes Could Affect Your Credit Score

Changes in how the most widely used credit score in the U.S. is calculated will likely make it harder for many Americans to get loans.Fair Isaac Corp., creator of FICO scores, will soon start

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8 Homeowner Vows For 2020 That Will Help You Be A Good Neighbor

You do your best to be a good neighbor, but there’s always room for improvement. Here's an idea: This year, take some extra steps and make a bit more effort to be an even better neighbor. It'll

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Declutter These 5 Kids Rooms Items In 2020

Whether you have one kid or eight, the odds are good their tiny rooms are filled to the brim with stuff, especially after the holiday season. And it's easy to let that slide, as long as the kids are

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Is A Basement Included In The Square Footage Of A Home

This is the tale of two basements in otherwise comparable houses. One is a finished basement with a den, bedroom, and full bathroom. The other basement has some Sheetrock, an exposed toilet, and a

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8 Essential Winter Home Maintenance Tips That Will Save You Big Time

Home maintenance in the winter? You heard us right, snow dogs. Just because the flurries may be drifting all over the yard and temps are dipping perilously close to the freezing mark, it doesn't

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How To Handle Inherited Investments

Investors need a plan to properly manage an inheritance.(GETTY IMAGES)RECEIVING AN inheritance can be a double-edged sword.On the one hand, it's overwhelming, thanks to the intense emotions

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Here Are Your Options If You Cant Make Your Mortgage Payment

When you find you can't make your mortgage payments, contact your lender to discuss options that may help you get back on your feet without losing your house.Even the most careful planners and

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Mortgage Rates Remain Stable To Start 2020 And That Could Mean An Early Start To The Spring Home Buy

The new decade has kicked off with a fairly stable interest-rate environment for home loans.The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.72% during the week ending Jan. 2, down two basis points from

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January Is The Month To Start Looking If Youre Hoping To Buy A Home In 2020

The home-buying season used to kick off sometime in spring, as the snow began to melt and people tried to plan for a summer move-in. But in recent years, the limited supply of homes for sale has

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How To Calculate Your Mortgage Payment

Plenty of online resources exist to help you calculate your mortgage accurately. (GETTY IMAGES)WHEN IT COMES TO YOUR monthly mortgage payment, you're not just paying off the sticker price of the.

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Fannie Mae Freddie Mac Will Soon Let Borrowers Take Out Mortgages Over 500K

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will let mortgage borrowers nationwide take out home loans over $500,000 in 2020.The Federal Housing Finance Agency announced Tuesday that it will increase the limit on

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How Investors Benefit From The Basics

Taking care the basic things will create a path toward financial wellness and help position an investor for retirement.(GETTY IMAGES)WHEN MOST PEOPLE THINK of wealth management, they often conflate

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What To Know About Buying A House In 2020

If you're hoping to secure a new address in 2020, you've picked an excellent time to enter, or re-enter, the real estate market. Interest rates are still near record lows, and in many areas across

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How To Invest In Real Estate Bonds

Mortgage REITs are one way to invest in real estate bonds.(GETTY IMAGES)WITH THE EXCITING performance of the stock market in 2019, it's easy to overlook the real estate bond market. But real estate

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Dont Make These 6 Mistakes When Remodeling Or Designing A Laundry Room

The laundry room is perhaps the least visible room in your home, but it serves a vital purpose—and we spend a lot of time there. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ American Time

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Outdated Mortgage Advice You Should Ignore Right Now

Buying a house is one of the most exciting things you'll ever do in your life — and signing the mortgage for that house will probably be one of the most terrifying.Since navigating the home loan

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How To Learn About The School Districts In Your New Area

Your search for the perfect house involves more than just the home itself. Beyond seeking out the perfect number of bedrooms and an entertainment-ready backyard, you also need to find the right

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Tips For Maintaining Your Privacy While Selling Your Home

Letting strangers in your house while you're not there can be a difficult part of the home selling process. Protect your belongings and identity by removing valuables and any paperwork that has your

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How Soon Can I Refinance My Mortgage

Drastic changes, such as a sudden drop in interest rates, may make it expedient to refinance a mortgage early.(GETTY IMAGES)IF YOU'VE HAD YOUR mortgage for a while or have built equity in your home,

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Should You Buy A House With Cash

While the idea of avoiding mortgage payments may be tempting, you'll miss out on some tax breaks and reduce your ability to invest elsewhere. (Piotr Powietrzynski/Getty Images)In today’s low

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10 Mistakes To Avoid When Selling Your Home

Clean up the clutter in your home and be willing to negotiate with buyers.Selling your home may seem like a mystifying process, but it doesn't require any hidden knowledge that the real estate

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Should Retirees Rent Or Own 3 Questions To Help You Decide

For many of us, the decision to rent or buy is dictated by our income. If the monthly costs of homeownership take up no more than 30% of your income and you can afford a down payment, then buying a

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Does Homeowner Insurance Cover Renovation Damage

Part of the thrill of a renovation is dreaming up a brand-new look for your home. The best part of the process is, of course, walking through the finished rooms and settling into your new space.But

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Recycle These 5 Things During Your Decluttering

We’ve all heard about spring-cleaning, but what about pre-holiday cleaning? That should be a thing, too! After all, with the holiday season right around the corner, it’s the perfect time to

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Mortgage Rates Are Increasing Again So Why Did More People Apply For Home Loans

Although mortgage rates now stand higher than they did just a couple months ago, more people are applying for loans to buy homes.The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.75% during the week ending

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Dont Believe These Myths About Painting

If you own a home, there's a pretty good chance you've wielded a paintbrush a time or two. And even if you haven't, chances are that you will eventually.It might seem like picking up a paintbrush

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6 Crucial Questions To Ask A Title Insurance Provider

Shopping for title insurance may not be the most thrilling step in buying a house, but it is one of the most important.Before you can own a home, or "take title" to a property, most lenders will

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What First Time Home Buyers Should Know About Closing Costs

CLOSING COSTS ARE EASY to overlook when you're buying your first home, as you're probably most concerned about the house purchase price, your down payment and the mortgage interest rate. But it's a

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Buying A Home With Friends Can Be A Legally Complicated Transaction

What you should know about working with clients who choose this unusual avenue to homeownership.A small but growing share of home buyers is forging an alternative path to homeownership that is ripe

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7 Tips And Tricks To Keep Your Home Cleaner Longer

Use humidity, a car product, and more wow ideas to save cleaning time.When cleaning your home, why not do it in such a way that'll keep your home cleaner with less effort?Here are 7 ways to keep

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The 16 Incredibly Useful Rules Every Organized House Follows

Homes don’t clean themselves. But these easy-peasy rules (wake and make!) will make you feel like they do.Here's the thing you may have noticed about houses: They don't clean themselves.Which is

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6 Tips For Maintaining A Wood Burning Fireplace

Brrr! With temperatures tumbling, there’s nothing better than nestling in some cozy blankets in front of a wood-burning fireplace. The sound of crackling wood and the heat radiating on your

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How To Winterize A House

Extreme winter weather can leave neighborhoods and communities without power or other public services for long periods of time, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security warns.It's a smart idea to

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Do You Get Your Earnest Money Back If You Cant Get A Mortgage

After you make an offer on a house and it's accepted by the seller, you'll be asked to put down an earnest money deposit to show your commitment to this purchase. But while you might be gung-ho to

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How To Control Moisture And Humidity In The Home

Moisture keeps your skin fresh and plump, but, sadly, it’s not doing your home any favors. In fact, according to Steve Worsley, owner of CNC Contractor Services, a mold consultation and mitigation

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Is A 15 Or 30 Year Mortgage Right For You

A bank will likely deem a 15-Year mortgage plan less risky than a 30-year plan, but that plan gives you less flexibility. (GETTY IMAGES)MORTGAGES COME WITH many options, and one of them is your loan

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Youd Better Ask These 5 Crucial Questions Before You Buy A House

No matter how many episodes of “House Hunters” or “Love It or List It” you've watched, buying a home inevitably comes with surprises. Though a sharp real estate agent will help you navigate

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Why You Might Not Want To Rake Your Lawn This Fall

winyuu/iStockThe cooling temperatures of autumn offer a long-awaited break from summer's scorching heat, but you won't relax for long—the beautiful colors of the leaves also signal that yardwork

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12 Tasks To Tackle This Fall

Cooler weather is coming — prep your home for its arrival while it's still nice outside.The days are getting shorter, and the nights are getting cooler. The kids are trudging off to school again

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4 Things To Consider Before Painting A Room Yourself

Tempura/iStockTo the inexperienced, painting a wall may seem like a larger-scale version of coloring inside the lines. But painting should never be considered an elementary task. Painting

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3 Fast Fixes For The Home Features Millennial Buyers Hate

BanksPhotos/iStockWhen it comes to selling a house, you want to appeal to as many potential buyers as possible. For years, that meant targeting baby boomers and Gen Xers; but today, millennials are

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4 Ways To Finance A Home Improvement Project Without Draining Your Bank Account

Taking on a home improvement project can increase your property’s value, address small issues before they become large problems, and make your house more livable. But while small projects may

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Does My Roof Need To Be Repaired Or Replaced

If it’s been a while since you gave much thought to the literal roof over your head, now’s the time to make sure all is well. Determining whether your roof needs to be repaired or replaced is a

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How To Save Enough For A Down Payment

Hopeful buyers are willing to go to great lengths to save enough for a down payment. (Getty Images)There comes a point for many prospective first-time homebuyers when nearly everything you do is

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What Is LTV And Why Does It Matter

LTV measures for lenders the risk of a loan defaulting. (GETTY IMAGES)WHETHER YOU'RE borrowing to buy a home, car, recreational vehicle or a similar asset, you can expect to use the asset you're

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5 Home Security Tips For Protecting Your Family And Valuables

Lighting, inside and outside your home, is key to deterring would-be burglars. Lights inside indicate someone is home, and timed lighting when you're not there helps give the illusion you are.-

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What Is A Sheriffs Sale

Home buyers are always looking for a bargain. But if you're really looking to save some dough, consider a sheriff's sale. As the name suggests, it's a real estate sale that involves your local

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Here Is How To Pay For That Expensive Home Renovation With A HELOC

Oh, the things you could do with your home if only you had the money. Remodel the kitchen, overhaul that ugly bathroom, or just fix the roof. But who has thousands of dollars just lying around to be

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4 Explanations Why Your Heater Smells Like Its Burning

Spring just on the horizon means your heater is about to go dormant for a while. Hooray! But be forewarned: You're likely to notice a burning smell once you turn it back on at the start of the next

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5 Tips For Making Your Home Holiday Ready

Prepping your home for the holidays isn't just about putting up decorations. Prepare your house so visitors who either stay for the evening or for a few nights feel welcome and safe. Maybe it's

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Freddie Mac September Forecast Hints At A Strong Housing Market This Fall

Although the nation’s trade war is projected to weaken future economic growth, Freddie Mac’s September Forecast indicates the housing market is likely to maintain its strength well into the.

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7 Home Upgrades That Will Attract First Time Home Buyers

Young first-time homebuyers are often attracted to spaces with plenty of room for entertaining friends and family. Stage your home so it showcases those spots and help potential buyers envision

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How To Get A Mortgage With Bad Credit

It's one of those home-buying riddles that many think is all but unsolvable: How can a home buyer get a mortgage with bad credit? After all, if your credit score is abysmal, you may as well kiss

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6 Ways To Make Your Home Environmentally Friendly

Part of making your home healthier is keeping unwelcome bacteria, dirt and toxins from getting inside. Have your family and friends take shoes off at the door to avoid tracking in dirt and keep your

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5 Questions To Ask Your Mortgage Lender Before Refinancing Your Home

Many homeowners with mortgages have considered refinancing at some point or another. Refinancing a mortgage essentially replaces your current mortgage with a new loan. It's an especially enticing

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7 Common HOA Rule Violations And How To Avoid Getting Fined

Living in a community managed by a homeowners association (HOA) means that you're obligated to follow certain rules and regulations. Depending upon your HOA, these rules can be very particular—so

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5 Crucial Questions To Ask Before You Buy A Fixer Upper

Thinking about buying a fixer-upper? Join the club. Blame it on the popularity of renovation reality TV or just the fact that people are searching for deals, but many home buyers are willing to

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Millennials Are Resorting To This Questionable Tactic To Buy Their First Homes

Millennial home buyers are going to some troubling lengths to foot the bill for their first homes, according to a new survey.Millennials are more likely than their older counterparts to fund their

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A Homeowners Guide To HOAs

Many homes across the United States are part of an HOA, or homeowners association. So what does that mean?In a nutshell, an HOA helps ensure that your community looks its best and functions.

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11 Surprisingly Tiny Home Quirks That Can Stop A Sale In Its Tracks

Ever spend the night at a friend’s or relative’s house where they reveal some quirky shortcoming in their home? Say, the light switch in the guest room works the opposite way you'd expect (down

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7 Fall Decor Tips For When Your Home Is On The Market

To embrace the fall season at home while your property is on the market, consider subtle details that keep your decor from going overboard.As you consider the best way to sell a house, one thing to

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Decorating And Design Ideas For Small Patios And Terraces

Decorating any part of a home, especially outdoor space, lets you tap into the creative side of your brain.But when the space is a small terrace or patio, too much creativity can be a bad thing.

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Busting The Most Common Reasons For Not Buying A Home

Owning a home means you can build equity, take advantage of tax deductions, and partake in a little something called the American dream. For the past couple of years, the U.S. homeownership rate has

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Unconventional Mortgages Attract Warning From Regulator

WASHINGTON—A type of unconventional mortgage that focuses on a borrower’s assets to vet repayment ability has drawn a warning from regulators for banks to maintain tight underwriting standards

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What Is A Homestead Exemption

Owning a home is likely your biggest asset, but also your biggest expense. Between the mortgage, insurance, unexpected repairs like roof damage, property taxes, and possibly homeowners association

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5 Kitchen Mistakes That Could Sink A Sale

Buyers put a lot of their focus on the kitchen. After all, it can be one of the most expensive rooms to remodel and its features and conditions can make or break a sale.Designers recently shared a

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7 Important Home Repairs To Do Right After Moving Out

Congratulations: You're moving out, and on to your next home! Now all you have to do is pack up your things and skedaddle, right?Not so fast. If you're still trying to sell your current home, you'll

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US Existing Home Sales Picked Up In July

WASHINGTON—Sales of previously owned U.S. homes picked up in July, suggesting that lower mortgage rates are beginning to drive sales after a weak spring selling season.Existing-home sales rose 2%

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How Soon Can You Sell A House After Buying

They don't call it a forever home for nothing. Most of us buy with the intent of staying a long time—sometimes indefinitely. But here's the rub: Things change. Life takes us in a different

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How To Buy Land And Tips To Pick The Perfect Plot

Wondering how to buy land? There's something thrilling about the idea of buying your own piece of vacant land—raw, untouched real estate on which you can build your dream home from the ground up.

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12 Home Features That Can Make It Easier To Sell A House

What makes a home really special? Whether it is a grand mansion or a two-bedroom apartment, what are the attributes that the trained eye of a real estate expert are zeroing in on when she views a

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What Is Fair Market Value

Whether you're buying or selling a home, one question that's always front and center is the price: How much is a home worth? That's a tricky question to answer, but probably the best starting point

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Getting An Appraisal Before You Sell Could Cost You

Even if you’re new to this whole selling-a-house thing, chances are good you’ve heard of a home appraisal. And if you know just a little about the process, you know that the appraisal—a value

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Pending Home Sales Rise In June Helped By Western Gains

Pending home sales rose in June, with activity particularly brisk in the western part of the U.S., a trade group said Tuesday.The National Association of Realtors® said pending home sales climbed 2

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HomeBuying Lingo You Should Know

Need a crash course on real estate terms? This glossary will get you started.DTI, PMI, LTV … TBH, it can be hard to keep all this stuff straight. This lexicon of real estate terms and acronyms

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Why It Could Get More Difficult For Americans To Get Approved For A Mortgage

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is set to eliminate a regulatory loophole that made getting a mortgage more feasible for thousands of Americans.The consumer watchdog agency announced this

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What Is Real Estate Due Diligence

Once you make an offer on a home and it's accepted, there's a process lasting a few weeks before you close the transaction. During this window of time, buyers are often told to "do their due

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How To Get Over Losing Out On A Home

Bumble's relationship pros explain how to get over the house that stole your heart.You had such big dreams for the two of you. You were ready to make the big commitment. You thought you’d grow old

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Moving Is The Worst But These Tips Will Make It Way Less Stressful

The idea of moving can sound like a great adventure, but for most people, the actual process of moving is a giant headache, or much worse. In fact, a lot of people equate it to some of life's

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Surprising Things That Can Drive Up The Cost Of Buying A Foreclosure Home

Buying a foreclosure home, also known as a distressed property, might seem like a less expensive way to get into your next place. These homes usually sell for about 15% below the home's actual.

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Why Does My Laundry Still Smell Bad After I Wash It

Some would argue that there are few household chores worse than laundry—the tedious rinse-and-repeat cycle that sprawls over our domestic calendars. After all, there's a reason it's called

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Should You Use The Same Real Estate Agent To Buy And Sell A Home

When you’re in the middle of selling a home and buying a new one, the question inevitably comes up: Can’t I just use the same agent for both transactions—wouldn’t that make things easier?

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Dont Make These 6 Mistakes When Installing Smoke Alarms

Installing smoke alarms is a task that most homeowners can tackle on their own. But proper installation and maintenance are vital to ensuring that your alarm actually works in an emergency. However,

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Doing This One Thing Before Putting Your Home On The Market Can Help Sell It Faster

You’ve lived in your home for years and haven't exactly been on top of regular maintenance tasks. Now, your windows are covered in plastic wrap to cut down on the cold drafts, your ceiling seems

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Home Prices Have Shot Up Way More Than You Thought Since The Recession

Quite a bit has changed since the housing bubble burst and the world plunged into a bleak recession. Rampant layoffs have been replaced by a booming economy and hiring sprees. A housing market

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Stress Free Homes Are A Trending Niche

Whether it’s a luxurious $45 million estate in California or a modest $250,000 two-bedroom house in Ohio, marketing a home’s stress-relieving qualities is a growing trend. Today, developers,

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5 Mistakes That Could Cause A Collapse When Building A Retaining Wall In Your Yard

A retaining wall is a practical outdoor feature that can help keep your yard in top form, but it's often overlooked—or misunderstood. In its most basic form, it's a structure that holds soil in

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4 Hardscaping Projects You Can Do Yourself And Those Better Left For The Pros

The right level of curb appeal can make neighbors do a double take—for the right reasons. Plus, it can up your property's resale value. Improving your curb appeal often includes manicured

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The Secret To Keeping Gardens Beautiful In Sweltering August

On a recent Sunday night my husband came out to the garden, where I had been working since dawn. He looked concerned.“What are you doing?” he asked in the sort of gentle tone a staff

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Why Its Taking First Time Buyers Longer To Find The Right Home

With soaring prices, hordes of competition, and a dearth of properties for sale, snagging the right home for the right price is no easy task. And it's even worse for first-time buyers.Of the buyers

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Most Home Sellers Will Wait This Long Before Dropping Their Listing Price

Other survey insights underscore frustration with the home buying processYou’ve listed your home for sale, and no one is taking the bait. One month passes, then two. How long do you wait before

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What Is A Water Hammer And How You Can Fix It

What is a water hammer? When something goes bump in the night, it could be water moving through your valves and pipes. But when you hear loud banging coming from your plumbing or valves, it's a

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5 Questions To Ask Before Selling Your Home

Selling your house is not as simple as just putting it on the market and waiting for offers from eager buyers to roll in. (Ah, if only...) If you have any hope that your sale will go smoothly, you

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The Housing Slowdown May Be Ending So Here Is What Buyers Sellers Need To Know

The much discussed—and, in some quarters, much feared—housing slowdown may be coming to an end.The real estate softening that began last summer, marked by a surge in homes hitting the market and

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What Is A Tankless Water Heater

What is a tankless water heater? Also called “demand-type” or “instantaneous water heaters,” these devices deliver warm water only when you want it. Conventional water heaters, on the other

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Dont Make These 6 Mistakes When Using Mulch In Your Yard

Mulch, a layer of organic material laid over your soil, is a gardener's secret weapon. When done correctly, mulching can conserve the soil’s moisture, slow the erosion process, and help to

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10 Projects That Blow Fixer Uppers Budgets

Many homeowners who purchase a fixer-upper say it was because they believed they’d save money. But they actually end up spending about the same or more than if they had opted for a move-in-ready

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How To Keep Dogs Safe And Calm During Fourth Of July Celebrations

Dogs have such a negative reaction to some of the activities associated with the Fourth of July – fireworks, parades, parties, alcohol consumption – you’d think they’re unpatriotic.Of,

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4 Times To Rent Out Your Home Rather Than Selling

While many homeowners reach a point where they decide to sell their place, here's an alternative I'm considering for my own home: Rather than sell, I may rent it out instead.When I bought my condo

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5 House Flipping Mistakes To Avoid

These days, house flipping is a popular concept. There are entire TV shows devoted to it. It may even be something you’ve thought about doing yourself.The premise is simple: You buy a home that

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Heres What Youre On The Hook For If Youre Buying A House Remodeled Without A Permit

Imagine attending an open house and stepping into a newly remodeled master bathroom complete with brand-new Carrara marble tiling and a luxurious free-standing tub. Home improvements like this are

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What Is A Hard Money Lender

What is a hard money lender? The real estate term may conjure up visions of crooked-nosed guys who'll cut off a borrower's pinkie finger for flaking on a hard money loan. But you can rest assured

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Do You Get Your Earnest Money Back At Closing

Do you get your earnest money back at closing? If you're buying a house and planning to finance the purchase with the help of a mortgage, the question is bound to come up. The short answer is: You

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FICO Scores For May Mortgage Borrowers Remain At Two Year High

Ellie Mae report shows borrowers are in better shape financiallyA strong labor market coupled with lower borrowing costs has put Americans in better shape to get a mortgage, based on average FICO

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7 Signs You Should Put Off Or Call Off A Home Renovation

Taking on a home renovation can improve your property's value, remedy any nagging structural or cosmetic flaws, and generally make your place way more comfortable to live in. All good!But hold on:

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6 Crucial Plumbing Facts That Could Make Or Break Your Bathroom Remodel

Planning to remodel your bathroom into the oasis of your dreams? Then you'd better get a handle on your plumbing. Even if you don't see the pipes connected to your sink or shower, understanding how

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Why Is Hardscaping The Landscaping Element Every Gorgeous Yard Needs

Looking to make your outdoor area more livable? Consider adding a hardscape feature to complement your plants and flowers. A decked-out backyard can give a big boost to your property's value, and

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Mortgage Rates Hold At Two Year Lows Giving Borrowers Another Shot At The Action

Rates for home loans mostly held steady, and even declined slightly, as investor jitters about a slowing economy and geopolitics continued to keep bonds attractive.The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage

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What Does Days On Market Mean

In the real estate game, many buyers understand that knowing a home's days on market (DOM) is absolutely critical intel. Why? Because the number of days a home spends on the market directly affects

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6 Ways To Embark On An EcoFriendly Renovation

Eco-friendly living is all about choosing materials and practices that are beneficial to the environment. But did you know this can also include your renovation process and the materials you use?

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How To Hire A Bathroom Contractor

Is it time to turn your en suite bathroom into a personal oasis? Before you start poring over which tiles or slipper tub to install, know that the far more crucial choice is to find the right

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The One Room Homeowners Are Spending The Most On

Homeowners are increasingly living out their HGTV fantasies by remodeling their homes, with a particular focus on taking their kitchens and bathrooms from drab to fab.Homeowners spent the most on

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Should You Do Home Upgrades Now Or Right Before You Sell

Home sellers are often told to make upgrades to their house before they sell ... but when is the best time to get those home improvements underway, in terms of scoring the best ROI?It's a tough

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Heres How To Ensure Your Confidential Financial Details Remain Secure When Buying A House

Buying a home is a complicated process that involves sharing sensitive information with multiple people. And the latest major data leak highlights the risk consumers take on when they share that

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6 Surprisingly Petty Issues That Can Sabotage A Home Sale

Selling a home can be a long, time-consuming process, especially if the seller and potential buyers butt heads. Sometimes, the issues behind a deal-making deadlock are legitimately big. Other times,

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5 Ways To Grow A Gorgeous Garden In A Tiny Space

In a perfect world, you'd have a sprawling backyard with enough room to plant everything from tulips to turnips. But in reality? Many of us have a very small outdoor space.And no, we're not talking

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5 Myths About Renting Out Your Home You Should Stop Believing Immediately

If you're lucky enough to own more than one property, or have an in-law unit just sitting empty behind your house, the thought has surely occurred to you: Why not just make back some cash by renting

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How Long Can You Expect Your Roof Or Fridge To Last

IF YOU ARE BUYING OR selling a house, odds are you're hyper-focused on the layout, the closet space and the yard – all aspects that a homeowner can't easily change. But another important

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5 Ways Youre Unknowingly Sabotaging Your Housecleaning Efforts

Let's face it: Housecleaning isn't how most of us would ideally spend our free time. We put it off and off and off, until we can't ignore the mess any longer. And when we do finally get around to

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4 Reasons Why Summer Is The Best Time To Move

Moving is the worst. But for those who can be flexible in scheduling their move, choosing the right season to relocate can make the whole experience smoother. So which time of the year is most

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6 Ways To Try Out A Neighborhood Before Moving There

If you're looking for a better way to get a feel for a new neighborhood, consider a tactic some recent homebuyers in New York have put to use: Because they are seriously considering moving to a

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5 Factors To Consider When Deciding The Best Time To Sell Your House

When is the best time to sell your house? Timing can make a big difference in terms of selling your home quickly and for the most cash. But here's the thing: The rules on pinpointing that best time

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Sellers Share The Upgrades They Wish They Would Have Made Sooner

If you’re like most homeowners, your house is a host of tiny irritations you keep meaning to fix but never do. Maybe it’s a light fixture you constantly bang your head on, or wallpaper you’ve

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How Much Does A Backyard Renovation Cost And What Can You Get For Your Money

How much does a backyard renovation cost? It's a question that many homeowners ponder if they're on the verge of upgrading their yard from an overgrown thicket to a beautifully landscaped oasis. But

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6 Ways To Fix The Most Common HomeBuying Mistake

What's the most common home-buying mistake? If you're reading this from a cramped living room, or while lying in your itty-bitty "master" bedroom, you probably know the answer: buying a too-small

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The Best Flooring For Resale Value

What's the best flooring to boost your home's resale value? Whether you're selling your place or are just thinking about replacing what's under your feet with something shiny and new, you'll want to

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Lazy Millennials Actually Work Harder At Buying Selling Homes

An overhyped stereotype about millennials is that they’re entitled narcissists who can’t be bothered to do homework, legwork or even stash a few dollars in the bank (see avocado toast). That

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Ginnie Mae Moves To Crack Down On Repeated Refinancings

Ginnie Mae is taking steps to curb repeated mortgage refinancings that it says are hurting both borrowers and investors.The government-backed firm, which promotes homeownership by guaranteeing

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How To Get Your Homes Real Estate Listing Removed From The Internet

Wondering how to get a real estate listing removed from the internet? Whether you're a seller who's withdrawn your house from the market, or a buyer who's just closed on a new place, fielding

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6 Phrases Home Buyers Should Never Include In Their Offer Letter

Conventional wisdom dictates that one of the more successful tactics out there to convince a home seller to accept your offer is get personal: Include some sweet and heartfelt information to them in

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Does Writing An Offer Letter To The Seller Help

You’ve spent months—perhaps years—searching for the perfect house, and you've finally found it. But you're not alone; there's a very strong chance that other home shoppers are vying for it,.

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6 Ways You Didnt Realize Your Bathroom Is Stressing You Out

In the best-case scenario, your bathroom is your own blissful retreat—a little slice of spa heaven where you can unwind without ever leaving the comfort of your own home.In reality, your bathroom

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5 Nonlazy Reasons To Skip Remodeling Before You Sell

Home sellers often hear that if they ever hope to find a buyer, they must whip their house into perfect shape—fix this, paint that, overhaul your horribly outdated kitchen. But just looking at the

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2019s Housing Market Is Likely To Be Stronger Than We Thought

Despite a real estate slowdown gripping the nation, this year's housing market is expected to be busier than realtor.com® economists originally predicted late last year. That means more home—

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8 Things Your Plumber Wishes You Knew About Conserving Water

You've heard it before: Conserving water is important. With all the water that Americans use each day—an estimated 322 billion gallons—every action you take, no matter how small, can contribute

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7 Ways To Celebrate Earth Day Year Round With EcoFriendly Items At Home

While many people turn out for Earth Day events that ironically generate tons of trash, this eco-holiday offers an opportunity to create lasting change in your habits that can lessen your impact on

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Why Spring Is The Perfect Time To Sell Your Home

Spring is in the air and homebuyers are coming out of hibernation. With the holidays over and the weather warming up, it’s the time of year that's typically considered a hot period for the housing

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Mortgage Rates Continue Ticking Up As Spring Home Buying Season Heats Up

After hitting a low point last month, mortgage interest rates are continuing to tick back up along with activity in the home-buying market for spring.Rates rose to an average 4.17% on a 30-year-

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Gen Z Is Already Saving For A Home

Get ready for Gen Z. People between the ages of 18 and 23 are eager to become homeowners, and many are already setting aside money for a down payment.More than half of Gen Zers surveyed said they

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Real Estate Commission Explained

If you hire a real estate agent to help you buy, sell, or rent a house, this professional gets paid through a real estate commission. So how much do you pay, and what for? Is there any wiggle room

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Mortgage Rates Tick Up As The Spring Selling Season Hangs In The Balance

Rates for home loans edged up after reports showed the economy was shrugging off its winter sluggishness.The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.12% during the April 11 week, mortgage guarantor

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A Guide To Mortgage Interest Rates And Why They Go Down And Up Plus What To Do

Mortgage interest rates are a mystery to many of us—whether you're a home buyer in need of a home loan for your first house or your fifth.After all, what does “interest rate” even mean? Why do

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Will Your House Sell Itself

Although housing prices are finally beginning to cool, there's no denying that much of the nation is still in a seller's market.Case in point: The rat-infested Orange County, CA, "hoarder home" that

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With Mortgage Rates At A Low Loan And Refinance Applications Surge

As mortgage interest rates dropped to their lowest levels in over a year last week, home owners and buyers raced to submit their refinance and other loan applications before rates start going up

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8 Attic Renovation Mistakes That Cause Setbacks Or Spell Disaster

The unused square footage in your attic can be renovated to increase the livable space in your home. However, if the project isn’t done correctly, you can have a major problem on your hands.

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Why Filing Your Taxes This Year Rules If Own A Rental Property

My husband and I recently purchased our first rental property. Over the past few months, we’ve repaired and renovated the 1930s-era home, and are starting to look for tenants.And it turns out our

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The Real Risks And Rewards Of A Reverse Mortgage Revealed

What is a reverse mortgage? Most home buyers applying for a loan know what a mortgage is, but a reverse mortgage may seem far less familiar. Maybe you've heard this mortgage term bandied about, and

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These Are The Most Expensive Fails In DIY Home Improvement

Many thrifty homeowners would rather save a few bucks by taking on upgrades themselves (after a few hours binge-watching HGTV and YouTube tutorials, of course) than by calling in the professionals

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6 Crucial Rules For Renovating Your Basement

A good basement renovation can provide extra living space and increase the value of your home, so for most homeowners, fixing it up is a no-brainer if they have the cash. But a botched remodel can

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What Every Homeowner Should Know About Their Home Insurance Coverage

Have you ever wondered, "How much home insurance do I need?" Well, you might, especially when you're faced with a lengthy list of policy options from your insurance agent. Do you really need all

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Your 2019 Home Tax Deduction Checklist

Welcome to your home tax deduction checklist! For homeowners, this kind of guidance is essential in the wake of all the (confusing) changes ushered in by the new tax plan, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act

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The Best Week Of The Year To Put Your House On The Market Is

For the past few years, home sellers have been in the driver's seat. With hordes of buyers fighting over a very limited supply of properties, many homes sold in days—and landed their sellers a

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How To Clean A Refrigerator

Knowing how to clean a refrigerator is an essential part of home maintenance. Most people open their fridge multiple times a day, but you'd be surprised by how infrequently fridges actually get

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5 Expensive Home Repairs And How To Avoid Them

The cost of owning a house includes more than just your monthly mortgage payment. Home improvements and repairs also take up a large amount of your budget, but they're essential to maintaining—and

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Heres How Much Home Staging Can Pay Off For Sellers

Home sellers have a lot to worry about: Will anyone want to buy their property for its full asking price? How long will it take to find a buyer? Is it really worth the expense and trouble of staging

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Mortgage Rates Skid To Lowest Level In A Year

Mortgage rates skidded last week to the lowest level in a year.Freddie Mac said the 30-year benchmark mortgage rate fell 10 basis points to 4.31% in the week ending March 14.The 15-year fixed rate

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How Long Does It Take To Buy A House

There are a lot of steps to buying a house, and that takes time: It takes 50 days on average to just close on a home.How long does it take to buy a house? A lot depends on how much time you spend

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A Step By Step Guide To Buying Your First Home In A Year

Buy Your First Home in One Year: A Step-by-Step GuideThe ultimate timeline ensures the smoothest of transitions.A real yard. Closets bigger than your average microwave. The freedom to decorate

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Dont Make These 8 Mistakes When Remodeling Your Bathroom

A bathroom remodel can add value to a home, but it also has the potential to be a huge headache. Why? There are many opportunities for missteps.“Bathrooms are often the hardest spaces to remodel

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5 Tax Deductions When Selling A Home

You may be wondering if there are tax deductions when selling a home. And the answer is: You bet!But there's also a new tax code—aka the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act—causing quite a bit of confusion

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How Does Paying Off Your Mortgage Affect Your Credit Score

A mortgage is probably the largest debt you’ll ever have, and paying it off is a significant achievement. But credit bureaus like Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion might not be as thrilled.

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A Whole New Credit Score Is Coming

Chances are good you know all about  your credit score. Also called a FICO score, this magical number is a major factor in many financial transactions,

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Whats The Difference Between A Short Sale And A Foreclosure

What is the difference between a foreclosure and a short sale? Foreclosures and short sales are both options for homeowners who fall behind on mortgage payments, but it's important to understand the

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What Is A Short Sale And The Benefits For Buyers And Sellers

What is a short sale? Let's break it down. Say you're selling your home; however, the offer you get is so low, it won't cover the total amount you owe on your mortgage. But you need to unload it, so

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7 Tax Benefits Of Owning A Home

What are the tax benefits of owning a home? Homeowners might be wondering this right around now as they prepare to file their taxes. Especially since the new Tax Cuts and Jobs Act—the most

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8 Ways To Fall Back In Love With Your Home

Remember when you first moved in to your house? Ah, what a feeling.You felt like your home was made just for you: It fit your budget, your goals, and even your personality. In short, you fell in.

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5 Things Every First Time Home Buyer Needs To Know

Here's what every first-time home buyer needs to know to dive into house hunting with confidence—and with as few curveballs as possible. Whether it's getting a mortgage, choosing a real estate

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Everything You Need To Know About A Pending Home Sale

Few home sales fall through once they reach pending status, but that doesn't mean all parties don't have plenty of work to complete before closing day. Few moments are as exciting for both a home

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8 Ways To Make Buyers Fall In Love With Your Flex Space Or Bonus Room

Home buyers love to get the most space for their money. In fact, a recent survey revealed that 66% of millennials cite more living space as the No. 1 reason for buying a house. So if you’re

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5 Common Electrocution Dangers In Your Home

Of all the scary hazards that could exist in your home, electrocution is one that should not be taken lightly. There's always a risk of being shocked by some of those handy products you use in your

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The 8 Biggest Eyesores In Your Home And Genius Ways To Hide Them

Those essential but utilitarian home items, such as electrical cords, radiators, and AC units, aren't exactly the prettiest room features. But you can't really rip them out—especially if you're a

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How To Measure Your Homes Square Footage

One of the most confusing and misleading metrics in real estate is area — the "size" of a house.Like most aspects of owning or purchasing a house, measuring the square footage of a home is

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How To Househunt For A Home Office

In this day in age, working from home has become both increasingly popular and feasible. If you are looking to buy a new home with plans to have a home office, keep in mind some of these factors so

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5 Home Remodeling Projects With Top Dollar Returns

Not all home improvements are created equal. These will reward you the most when it comes time to sell.Your home is in the perfect location, came at the perfect price, with the perfect lot. (Yay

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6 Presale Home Improvements Sellers Wish Theyd Never Made

Every seller wants their home to stand out from the crowd, and that often means beefing it up with shiny new improvements before putting it on the market. But sometimes owners go overboard, and the

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7 Step House Cleaning Plan For The Germaphobe Inside Us All

It's that time of year when truly scary stuff is happening outside our doors. Flu season is in full swing, a mystery polio-like illness has affected people in more than two dozen states, and we're

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How To Guard Against 9 Winter Home Hazards

The blustery winter months are already here for some regions of the country, and for others the coldest part of the year is coming fast.Whether you expect to cross-country ski to work in the first

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Heres Why Your Listing Is Turning Buyers Off

The best way to get potential buyers through the door and interested in your home is with a stellar online listing. Photos of the house and a description of the property are standard fare, but not

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6 Reasons Why Your Higher Offer Wont Win The House

You've finally found your dream home, and it's actually in your budget. You can swing it—with cash to spare—but with competition fierce, why not go all in and offer way above asking? The seller

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Top Landscaping Trends Of 2019

Why go out and blow a ton of money when you can stay in—and invite people over to your beautifully landscaped backyard? And why would you want to sign up for a crowded yoga class when you can get

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8 Pro Tips For A Picture Perfect Paint Party

Does your home's paint look dated and faded? Don't despair—there's another way to give your house a makeover without the drudgery of taping and rolling: Make your friends do it!A paint party is an

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A Guide To Eradicating Mold From Your Home

Mold is unsightly in appearance, unpleasant to smell, and sometimes unhealthy to humans.“While some types of home mold just look and smell bad, other types, such as black mold, can be very,

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A Checklist Of Loan Documents You Need For Each Type Of Mortgage PreApproval

Whether you’re self-employed or applying for an FHA or USDA loan, here’s the pre-approval paperwork you need.If you’re serious about buying a home, getting pre-approved for a mortgage is a

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5 Temporary Fixes When You Need A Major Winter Home Repair

There’s no such thing as a convenient time for something to break in your home. But winter is particularly risky because the loss of heat in your home or water damage can quickly escalate, which

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How To Organize Your Bathroom Fast

Overwhelmed by the thought of decluttering your home? Then it's time to start small by tackling the smallest organizing project in your home: your bathroom.Bathrooms are clutter magnets. It makes

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Mortgage Rates Hit A 9Month Low As Government Shutdown Is Already Biting The Housing Market

Rates for home loans slid again, even as the ongoing government shutdown poses a fresh threat for a wobbly housing market.The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.45% in the January 10 week,

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12 Habits People With Clean Organized Homes Have In Common

We’ve all been there—barely surviving the morning rush hour of making lunches, signing permission slips, and searching for matching socks. Then after a busy day at work and school comes the

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Real Estate Mistakes You Dont Want To Make During A Divorce

Consider these options before making a decision that could leave you financially or legally strapped.Dividing your assets in a divorce settlement is tough, and there's no way to split a co-owned

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The New Rules Of Neighborly Etiquette

Neighborhoods just aren't the same as they used to be.Gone are the days when everyone on your street knows you and waves when you pass one another by. One recent study by the City Observatory found

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9 Furnace Maintenance Moves We All Forget That Raise Our Heating Bill

With winter roaring in at full speed, it's time to brush up on your furnace maintenance skills. After all, you wouldn't expect your car to run at top efficiency if you never change the oil, right

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Your Winter 2019 Home Maintenance To Do List

We won't sugarcoat it: The thought of doing home maintenance right now is pretty blah—especially with the holidays looming and weeks of gloomy winter days on the horizon. Who wants to do housework

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How To Clean For The Holidays

'Tis the season for binge cleaning. We've got your step-by-step guide to preparing your house for holiday guests.When it comes to the holidays, it can be overwhelming to prepare your house for all

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What You Need To Know Before Building A Wine Cellar In Your Home

According to a 2016 study from the Wine Institute, the average American drinks nearly three gallons of wine each year, making the U.S. the largest wine-consuming nation per capita. With stats like

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What Are Granny Pods

After children grow up and leave the nest, their parents may enjoy their newfound freedom for a while. But as those parents grow older, they and their adult kids may think about living close

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4 Mistakes You Might Make Moving From A City To The Suburbs

There comes a time in many people’s lives—usually when the words “baby” or “school district” become a regular part of the vocabulary—when people flee the glamorous city to the charming

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Are Home Warranties A Smart Buy

When you buy a product or service for your home, you want peace of mind that you're getting your hard-earned money's worth. If things happen (and they do happen), you want to know the company will

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How To Buy A House For Your Child Even If You Arent Loaded

Want to learn how to buy a house for your grown child? Being able to help your grown kids become homeowners can really give them a leg up—particularly in this pricey housing market.“Between

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6 Times Its Actually Smarter To Buy A New Home Before Selling The Old

You should never buy a new house before selling your old home ... at least, that’s the conventional wisdom. Because if you buy before you sell, you run the risk of owning two homes at once—and

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5 Times Its Smarter To Sell Your Old Home Before Buying A New One

If you own a home but are ready to move onto a bigger and better abode, one of the most important questions to ponder before you embark on this transition is this: Should you sell before you buy, or

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5 Reasons To Talk To A Lender Long Before You Buy A Home

Most potential home buyers wait to talk to

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6 Presale Home Improvements Sellers Wish Theyd Never Made

Every seller wants their home to stand out from the crowd, and that often means beefing it up with shiny new improvements before putting it on the market. But sometimes owners go overboard, and the

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7 Weekend Improvement Projects You Can Do In Your Pajamas

For those of us who live in cold-weather climates, the winter months are synonymous with hibernation mode. Who wants to go outside when you have to shovel 2 feet of snow just to see the sidewalk?But

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How Long Does It Take To Improve Your Credit Score Enough To Buy A Home

How long does it take to improve your credit score? If you're hoping to buy a home, having a good credit score is key, since it helps you qualify for

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The Best Home Improvement Advice I Ever Heard

If you're a homeowner, you've probably heard and read plenty of home improvement advice. It just kind of comes with the territory, right? In fact, the second you sign the mortgage, your fellow

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The 4 Key Trends Home Buyers And Sellers Should Watch In 2019

We're entering the home stretch of 2018, when you can actually say, "See you next year!" to someone you'll see in just a few weeks. It's a time to look ahead, to make new plans, to achieve new.

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6 Reasons Why Selling A House In The Winter May Be The Best Decision Ever

Spring is generally the most popular time of year to sell a house, with hordes of buyers looking to move into a new place before the school year begins. But if you decide to sell your home during

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What Great Listing Photos Can Teach You About Marketing Your Home

Gone are the days when all you needed to get buyers to come take a look at your home was a "For Sale" sign out front and a bit of curb appeal. Long gone, actually. Ancient history!These days,

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8 Cleaning Chores We All Forget That Make A Big Difference

Cleaning the house is a must before guests arrive. Yet while we'll bet your countertops sparkle and your floors gleam, there are a few cleaning tasks that probably fell off your to-do list ... and

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What Is Old House Smell And How Do You Get Rid Of It

Old house smell: Those three dreaded words evoke something rather frightening and repellent to most homeowners. You know what we're talking about, right? It's that musty odor that creeps up and

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Can Suburbs Rebrand Themselves To Snare More Millennial Home Buyers

The affluent Chicago suburb of Lake Forest seemingly has it all: sprawling estates, major corporate employers, country clubs, beaches on Lake Michigan, and two symphony orchestras. A few years ago,

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FHA Will Not Cut Mortgage Insurance Premiums

Actuarial report reveals insurance fund is in good health, but Montgomery says premiums will standThe Federal Housing Administration released details on the health of its flagship Mutual Mortgage

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10 Answers You Should Never Give When Asked Why You Are Selling

“Why are you selling your house?” might seem like a perfectly innocent question from home buyers, but watch out—if you're the home seller they're asking, this is one of the diciest questions

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6 Easy Bathroom Fixes So You Dont Disgust Your Guests

When you host a party, there can be a disproportionate amount of stress over the condition of your bathroom. It's the place your guests will likely spend the least amount of time, but also the place

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6 Fast Fixes To Save Face If Youre Embarrassed By Your Living Room

Nothing can put a damper on your holiday hosting schedule quite like a living room you're embarrassed to share with your guests. After all, it's hard to send out party invites when you cringe at the

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9 Tips For Achieving Maximum Coziness

Gray skies don’t have to mean a drab indoor life.As fall continues and the days become shorter, it’s too tempting to just hibernate until spring. But there is, indeed, joy to be found in the

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Sticky Questions Of New Homeowner Etiquette

So, the last box has finally been unpacked, or at least tucked away in the garage. The shelf paper has been laid, and the hardwood floors are gleaming.Now it’s time to throw open the doors, pour a

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How Long Does It Take To Build Credit History From Scratch

How long does it take to build credit history? If you ever plan to buy a house, establishing a track record of past payments is essential, because it proves

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How Much Money Will You Save Insulating Your Attic

Insulating your attic might not be the sexiest home renovation project around, but it's probably one of the most practical home improvements you can make. Think about it: Every ounce of insulation

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5 Kitchen Renovation Projects You Should Never Do Yourself

The DIY gurus make it look so easy. Home bloggers and HGTV hosts would have us believe that no kitchen project is out of reach for the average homeowner. But take heed: Even the most ambitious among

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How To Sell A Home Fast Even Before The Holidays

Need to know how to sell a home fast, even though the holidays are speedily approaching? If you're thinking of throwing up your hands and giving up hope until the new year, we're here to offer hope:

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How To Buy A Home Fast Even Before The Holidays

Need to know how to buy a home fast since you're hoping to be settled in before the holidays? Then the pressure's definitely on at this point! If you have any hope to host your Thanksgiving feast

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American Homeownership Increases Again As Housing Market Looks For Balance

More Americans became homeowners in the summer months, fresh evidence of a housing market that’s finding some stability after several rocky years.The national homeownership rate was 64.4% in the

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The Guide For Buying Land Building A House Or Buying New Construction

Here are your options for starting from scratch, finding a builder and customizing your home.Sometimes, buying an existing home just won’t work. You may be a homebuyer who’s tired of competing

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Single Female Homeownership Is Baby Booming

The composition of American households is evolving. In 2018, there are more single female homeowners than ever before in our history.Patricia Ramos, a single 63-year-old medical clerk in St.

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What Home Buyers And Sellers Need To Know About Todays Crazy Housing Market

Nevermind the heartfelt personal letters. For aspiring home buyers in today's cutthroat housing market, the secret to success is no secret at all: money, and lots of it.Buyers who successfully close

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Preapproved Vs Prequalified

Your negotiating power and freedom to shop for a home may hinge on the information you provide to your mortgage lender.Preapproved vs. Prequalified: Which Is Best When You're House Hunting?Before

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Buyers Need More Time To Save A Downpayment

Home Buyers Need 7.2 Years to Save Down Payments – 1.5 Years More Than in 1988Buyers these days need 7.2 years to save a 20 percent down payment on the median valued home. That’s up from 5.7

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Can You Prevent Porch Pirates From Stealing Your Packages

How to keep your online orders from falling into thieves' hands.Few things can match the excitement and ease of receiving a package delivered to your front step.That is, until a stranger snags the

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How To Get A Moving Estimate That Wont Become A Moving Target

Newsflash: Moving stinks—and it can be even worse when you don't know how to get a moving estimate you can trust. This can lead to massive misunderstandings, when movers quote you one price before

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Questions To Ask When Your Home Inspection Is Complete

What are some questions to ask a home inspector after he's finished the inspection? Because, let's face it, just staring at that hefty report highlighting every flaw in your future dream home can

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Mortgage Rates Retreat But Housing Market Supply Crunch Wont Let Up

Rates for home loans fell in tandem with the bond market, a welcome respite for the housing market after a recent run-up in home financing costs.The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.85% in the

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The Best Home Buying Advice Ive Heard

If you're house hunting, you're probably getting snowed with advice from well-meaning friends and family members on which neighborhoods are hot, how so-and-so is selling a place you have to see ...

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How To Find Your Dream Home Without Losing Your Mind

Finding your dream home is an exciting adventure that, at times, can also feel all-consuming. On a good day, it's fun to swipe through listings and whiz through every open house in your area, but

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What Is A Recast Mortgage And Should You Try It

What is a recast mortgage? While it sounds more like a fishing trip than a financing tool, it's actually where you pay off a lump sum of your principal (that's the money you owe), then have your

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Home Improvement Project ROI

It’s easy and fun to plan home improvements, but not all projects have the same impact on your home’s value, so you must plan carefully. Here’s a summary of how to get the most bang for your

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Expert Advice On Investing In Vacant Land

Have a short time horizon, do your homework and know your market.INVESTORS LOOKING FOR creative ways to maximize returns in a competitive, hot-selling real estate market may be interested in buying

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How To Buy A House In Your 20s And Why You Really Should

Curious about how to buy a house in your 20s? If you're dubious it can be done, we get it. Between entry-level salaries, college loans, and the desire to just be young and have fun, 20-somethings

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6 Home Renovation Myths To Stop Believing Before You Botch Things Up

Where do home renovation myths start? Maybe in the aisles of your local hardware store or parking lot of the lumber yard. They get traded back and forth and whispered to people who may actually

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How Long Does It Take To Refinance A Mortgage

How long does it take to refinance a mortgage? Refinancing should take anywhere from 30 to 45 days on average, although that can stretch to 60 days if you hit any snags along the way. In other:

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5 Crucial Questions To Ask A Home Inspector

What are some questions to ask a home inspector? If you're buying a house, you know that your home inspector will check it out and make sure it's in decent shape. So if you want to get to know your

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6 Tips For Properly Caring For Your New Construction Home

A newly built house still needs maintenance to keep things from breaking down over time.Buying a new home from a builder means you won’t have to spend time getting used to any loose floorboards,

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US Pending Home Sales Fell In August

WASHINGTON—The number of U.S. existing homes going under contract declined in August for the fourth time in five months, reflecting what appears to be a broader slowdown in the housing market.The

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Mortgage Rates Hit A Seven And A Half Year High As The Easy Money Era Comes To A Close

Rates for home loans jumped along with yields in the broader bond market, taking financing costs to a recent high and raising fresh questions about the effect of another headwind on a housing market

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Read This First If You Have Been Thinking About Converting Your Garage

You love your home, but spacewise, you’re bursting at the seams. Building an extension seems daunting, but moving out of your fabulous neighborhood is off the table. Hmm ... you do have that two

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The Guide To Understanding Your Home Value

The science behind calculating the value of your home and what it means for your home's sale price.Getting ready to sell your house, looking to refinance or buying a new homeowners insurance

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What Does Move In Ready Really Mean

You may need to adjust your mindset before walking into a house advertised as move-in ready.If you’re like many homebuyers in today’s market, you’re looking for a house that’s ready for you

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Why Fall Is The Best Time For Planting

Spring is overrated for planting perennials, shrubs and trees. Starting plants in autumn has advantages for both garden and gardenerFall is the best time to garden, and it’s about time we realized

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5 Ways To Put Fall Leaves To Work In Your Garden

Improve your soil and yard the organic way with a valuable garden booster that grows on treesIn fall my town holds leaf collection days, when homeowners (or their landscape services) blow or rake

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7 Common Mistakes Seasoned Homebuyers Make

Mistakes in the homebuying process are common, whether it's the first home you're buying or the fifth. One of the best ways to avoid taking a misstep when purchasing real estate is to understand the

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5 Red Flags That Could Sink A Home Inspection

You’ve found the perfect house, located right near that cool new shopping area and the best schools. It even has the right number of bathrooms! Swoon. It's time to sign the paperwork and move...

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Why Are More Seniors Holding Onto Mortgage Debt

Study sheds light on factors influencing older homeownersFewer older homeowners are paying off their mortgages in retirement, and some are worried the trend may have a lasting impact on the

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Homebuilder Confidence Holds Its Ground

Although cost causes concern, demand is persistentAlthough homebuilders still fear increasing material costs, homebuilder confidence remained unchanged at 67 in September, according to the National

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Mortgage Rates Hit 6 Week High With Housing Market At A Crossroad

Rates for home loans rose to a six-week high as upbeat economic data and a bulging deficit spurred a yield-lifting bond sell-off and big questions gripped the housing market.The 30-year fixed-rate

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Can You Actually Turn A Profit Flipping Homes In Todays Market

Tight inventory is making house flipping more of a gamble, but that's not stopping ambitious investors from giving it a shot.Back in 2012, house flipping seemed like the perfect opportunity for a

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What Is Debt To Income Ratio

What is debt-to-income ratio? This equation, comparing how much money you owe to the money you make, affects whether you can qualify for a mortgage—but let’s unpack this important term into

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Price Cuts Becoming More Common Especially At The High End

Price Cuts Becoming More Common, Especially at the High End About 14 percent of all listings across the U.S. had a price cut in June 2018, up from a recent low of 11.7 percent near the end of.

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Boomers Are Staying Put Instead Of Downsizing

But there are reasons Boomers aren't moving out of their family homes.Baby Boomers are not ready to let go. The approximately 70 million Americans between 54 and 73 years old are not downsizing into

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How To Maximize Increases In Your Home Value

Help ensure your home's growth in value by making improvements that keep it on par with the best houses in the neighborhood.U.S. homeowners with mortgages have seen their home equity increase nearly

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What Is The Difference Between Market Value And Assessed Value

Recent sales of nearby homes can be a significant factor when determining the value of your house.Understanding your home’s value is an important part of knowing your net worth, what you’ll

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Construction Spending Increases A Tenth Of A Percent In July

The U.S. Census Bureau of the Department of Commerce announced that construction spending during July 2018 was estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $1.32 billion, 0.1% above the revised

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Here Are 5 Essential Home Selling Moves You Might Not Be Doing

To get your home sold, you have to tackle a rather long to-do list. Some of these tasks are well-known, and some are just good ol' common sense—like finding a real estate agent and spreading the

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Add Instant Curb Appeal With These 6 Easy Changes

It should come as no surprise that before you sell your home, you've got to make it sparkle—after all, prospective buyers will be peeking in every cabinet, corner, and closet they can get into.But

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Home Sales Hit A Fresh Low In July As Housing Market Looks For Direction

The housing market has made little progress over the past year or so, and this summer, the wind officially seems to have gone out of its sails. One after another, the economic data reports have

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How To Price A Home In A Sellers Market

How to price a home in a seller's market may be a question that's top of mind if you're listing your home. Much of the United States right now is a seller's market—which spells potential for major

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Mortgage Insurance Premium Explained

If you're a first-time mortgage borrower, you might be asking yourself, "What is MIP?" Home buyers considering getting a loan from the Federal Housing Administration will find MIP, or mortgage

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What Is A Mortgage Note And Do You Know Where Yours Is

What is a mortgage note? Also known as a promissory note or deed of trust note, it's the basic loan contract given to you by your lender—the document you signed on the dotted line to make your

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6 Questions Youd Never Think To Ask But Should When Buying A House

When buying a house is high on your priority list and you spot The One—the house that has everything you've ever dreamed of and more—it can be tempting to put pedal to the metal and close the

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Fewer Americans Uproot Themselves For A New Job

Fewer U.S. workers are moving around the country to seek new job opportunities, as changing family ties and more openings near home make people less willing to uproot their lives for work.About 3.5

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5 Mortgage Moves You May Not Realize You Need To Do

Getting a mortgage is easy, right? You’ve seen the TV commercials and the billboard ads touting promises like, “Get approved for a mortgage today!” Well, sorry to break the news, but the

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How To Keep Your Beloved Plants Safe During A Move

Transporting philodendrons and fiddle-leaf figs during a move can be tricky, so knowing how to ship plants is very useful.Few moving companies are willing to throw plants on the truck, especially

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Foreclosures Drop To Lowest Level In Nearly 12 Years

Mortgage delinquencies and foreclosure rates in the U.S. dropped to their lowest level for may in the past 12 years, according to the latest Loan Performance Insights report from CoreLogic, a

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Mortgage Rates Tick Down As More Home Buyers Choose To Wait It Out

Interest rates for home loans ticked down as simmering trade tensions kept investors flocking to the safety of bonds, even as evidence mounts that more would-be home buyers may be giving up.The 30

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What To Look For In A Fixer Upper

Renovating a fixer-upper is not for the faint of heart. It takes money, hard work, and patience. But if you're able to pull off a successful transformation, you'll reap the benefits.“Fixing up a

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6 Surprising Ways Your Kitchen Is Stressing You Out

The kitchen might be the heart of the home, but it can also unwittingly be the cause of your household stress. No, we're not talking about when you burn Monday night's dinner, or come home to a pile

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Animal Loving Home Buyers Leave Decisions To The Dogs

For two years, Kelly Heskett searched real estate listings for a home big enough for her noisy, rambunctious family. She found an ideal one last month in nearby Norristown, PA: a three-bedroom, 2.5

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7 Qualities Of A Good Neighbor

If you want good neighbors, you’ll first have to become one yourself. Master these seven techniques, and even you (yes, you!) can win the approval of your entire neighborhood.1. Good neighbors

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5 Mortifying Reasons Mortgage Applications End Up In The Reject Pile

Picture this nightmare: You apply for a mortgage, but your application gets rejected. Suddenly, you’re hit with an overwhelming wave of embarrassment, shock, and horror. It’s like having your

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Homeownership Rate Jumps To 4 Year High As More Americans Make Gains

More Americans became homeowners in the spring, and the number of renters decreased, adding to evidence that consumers still aspire to ownership despite ongoing housing market headwinds.The national

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Mortgage Rates Rebound In Critical Moment For Housing

Rates for home loans jumped along with the broader bond market, setting up what one economist is calling a key test of the health of the housing market.The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.54%

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The Cost Of Selling Without A Real Estate Agent

You’ve heard of buyer’s remorse; but without your market expertise and sales skills to back them up, sellers who choose to sell their home on their own just may experience “seller’s”

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How To Finance A House Flip With 5 Types Of Fix And Flip Loans

If you're wondering how to finance a house flip, you're not alone. Buying, renovating, then quickly reselling houses for profit can be a highly lucrative endeavor, yet finding a loan to fund such a

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What Would A Home Buyer Give Up For A Good School

When Alyssa Sadler and her husband started thinking about buying a home on Long Island, NY, they focused on diverse communities in good school districts. As newlyweds, they planned on having

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What Is A Single Family Home

The phrase "single-family home" is something you'll often see when browsing through real estate listings. A single-family home might seem easy to define: It's a home for a single family, right? Eh,

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Heres How Much A Low Credit Score Costs Home Buyers

With skyrocketing home prices and rising mortgage rates, many home buyers are frantically looking for ways to cut down on costs wherever they can. But in one area, it makes sense to ramp up,

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What Is The Right Of Rescission

The right of rescission is a little-known—but very valuable—part of the home loan process. This federally protected right can come into play when you are refinancing or taking out a home equity

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Mortgage Rates Tick Down But Can Borrowers Seize The Opportunity

Rates for home loans ticked down as the bond market moved sideways and the housing market made little headway.The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.52% during the July 19 week, down one basis

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Local Bookstores Youll Want To Know

With the number of rainy, mild months this region has, it’s unsurprising how many book lovers are drawn to Portland. After all, what’s better than curling up on a rainy Sunday morning with a cup

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Youve Probably Never Heard Of The Most Expensive Home Maintenance Task

You did it. After years of saving, you mustered up a down payment, your credit was strong enough to secure a mortgage, and you were able to fight off the hordes of other buyers to close on a home of

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How Movers Move Their Own Stuff

No one knows how to move like professional movers. That's their job, after all. And that got us wondering: Once the day arrives where they have to pack up their own stuff and get from point A to

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What A Builder Warranty Covers On New Constructions And What Youre On The Hook For Yourself

So you’re buying a newly constructed home, and it comes with a builder warranty. Awesome! That means that the builder will assume financial responsibility for anything that breaks, right? Well,

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5 Myths And 5 Truths About Selling Your Home

True or false: All real estate advice is good advice. (Hint: Well ... it depends.)Everyone has advice about the real estate market, but not all of that unsolicited information is true. So when it

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White Boxing Is The Hot New Real Estate Strategy That Lets Buyers Visualize Their Dream Home

Home shoppers usually want to see a property at its best. This means that sellers truck in staged furniture, slap on fresh paint, and repair potential problems for buyers.“When you walk into a

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The Best Natural Mosquito Repellents Revealed

Do citronella candles work? With summer in full swing and mosquitoes flitting about you, you may have heard that citronella—an herbal oil found in lemongrass—can banish bugs naturally without

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14 Items That Will Make Moving Day Go Smoothly

For first-time home buyers and seasoned homeowners alike, moving day is a major drag. Sure, it's exciting to start the next chapter of your life in a brand-new place, but the process of moving is

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Dont Rent Out Your Home On Airbnb Before You Read This

You'd be hard-pressed these days to find any homeowners who haven't considered renting out their home on Airbnb or a similar site—it's certainly tempting to make extra cash on a room that's just

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Where Does Dust Come From And How Do You Battle It

Where does dust come from? You may be wondering that after wiping a fine layer off the coffee table you swear you just cleaned the day before. It doesn't matter if you live in the city or the burbs,

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7 Ways To Botch Renovating A Home

“Renovating my house was a piece of cake," said no one ever. Indeed, even seemingly simple projects, like installing a screen door, staining hardwood floors, or refacing kitchen cabinets, can

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Dont Believe These 5 Myths About Real Estate Agents

Do you need one? Do they pocket the whole commission? Let’s set the facts straight.Buyers and sellers often enter the market with misconceptions about real estate agents — how we work, how the

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How To Find A Handyman

Have you ever wondered how to find a handyman? The trick is finding someone trustworthy with a proven track record of success. There are plenty of websites and apps that make it a snap to recruit

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Portlands Best Frozen Treats

With the 4th of July next week and summer in full swing, it’s time we talk about one of summer’s most controversial topics: Where to get the best ice cream. Portland is anything but shy when it

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How To Check For Liens On Your Property

"Is there a lien on my property?" If this is something you're wondering about, then you'll definitely want to find out, pronto. You might think you already know about any liens on a property you

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Happy Housiversary And How Homeowners Celebrate This Hot New Trend

Happy "housiversary"! Um, say what? Yep, #Housiversary is a thing on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and beyond.The reason: Much like a marriage, the day you close the deal and officially "own" your

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8 Things That Are Bound To Go Wrong When Youre Painting A Room

Painting is one of the cheapest and easiest home makeovers out there—no knocking down walls, no pricy appliances. Just you and a brush stand between you and a whole new look!And yet: While

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6 Smart Ways To Build Home Equity

Want to create wealth through homeownership? Build equity.Home equity is the percentage of your home’s value that you own, and it’s key to building wealth through homeownership. Let’s take a

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How To Prepare For Your First Trip Away After Moving In To A New House

You’ve found the perfect new home and finally unpacked and settled in. But now it’s summer, which means you have trips planned that will take you out of town for a few days. If you are still new

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Baby Boomers Are Downsizing And Theres A Problem With What To Do With All Their Stuff

As baby boomers age, many are planning to downsize into smaller homes. But preparing to live in a smaller space brings up a challenge: how to get rid of all the stuff you’ve accumulated through

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Everything You Need To Know About Employer Relocation Packages

Moving for work? Make sure you know exactly how much help you can expect from your employer.If your company has asked you to move to a new city or state for work, you’re not alone. Each year,

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How To Paint Brick

Pondering how to paint brick, or even if you can paint brick? Well, for the most part it's entirely doable—and can give your old fireplace or brick house an easy face-lift. But you'll want to plan

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Youll Never Guess The Hottest Remodel Of 2018

The hottest remodeling jobs of the year aren't all about installing new kitchen cabinets or countertops, putting an eye-catching backsplash above the stove, or adding a sleek yet functional kitchen

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Preparing For Emergencies As Part Of Your Move In Process

I know, one more thing to add to your to-do list when you’re moving into a new house. That’s the last thing you need. Unfortunately disaster tends to strike at inconvenient times, so why not

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Negotiating A Real Estate Deal With A Counteroffer

A lot can happen between an initial offer and closing day. Meet the counteroffer ...Buying a home is rarely as simple as making an offer and paying that offer out. Negotiations can go back and forth

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Plan For These Hidden Costs When Buying Your First Home

Get those rainy day funds in order — you're going to need them.You’re excited because you just found the perfect home. The neighborhood is great, the house is charming and the price is right.But

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The 3 Most Boring Parts Of The HomeBuying Process

When all is said and done, buying a home is exciting—and a milestone to be celebrated. But if you expect each step of the process to be a thrill ride, we're here to tell you you're sorely.

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Checklist For Finding The Right Neighborhood For You Part Two

 Now that you have your neighborhood priority list sorted, it’s time to start exploring! Here are some tips as you do your research on neighborhoods.  Get online Google won’t hold

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Ginnie Mae Reveals New Requirements For VA Refinance

Continues fight against predatory lendingGinnie Mae recently announced new requirements for its Department of Veterans Affairsre finance loans in order to protect service members from predatory

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Deciphering Ego Jargon

Green building techniques can save homeowners money and make the environment a cleaner place. But agents must learn how to translate confusing industry terms into listing descriptions that sell

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Checklist For Finding The Right Neighborhood For You

If you’re moving to an entirely new area, trying to figure out which neighborhood to search for a home in can feel a bit overwhelming. Not to worry, we’re here to help you find the perfect one.

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3 Things Home Buyers Should Know About The Newly Reformed Lending Law

On Thursday, President Donald Trump signed legislation rolling back some of the lending restrictions enacted in response to the housing boom and bust. While the new law doesn’t entirely do away

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8 Real Estate Documents To Keep And What Happens If You Dont

Which real estate documents should you keep after buying a home? After all, you don't want to have to file all of it if you don't have to; but you also don't want to chuck something crucial.Your

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What Is A Due On Sale Clause

What is a "due on sale" clause in a mortgage contract? This common phrase, found in most conventional home loan paperwork, means that when a property is sold, the entire balance of the loan comes.

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3 Pros And 3 Cons Of Buying New Construction

Many house hunters are under the mistaken impression that new construction is flawless, a perception that may be challenging to wrestle with if your seller’s home is surrounded by brand-new

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How To Survive A Move With A New Baby

If you have to move with a little one, the mere thought of it might seem preposterously overwhelming. Well we’re here to tell you- you will survive! But here’s a few tips to make sure you keep

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When Should You Make An Offer Below Asking Price

Homes are expensive, and getting even more so every day. (Also, water is wet and the sky is blue!) Making an offer over asking price—sometimes by absurd amounts—has become a harrowing norm for

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Prepare For The Ultimate Staycation

Rule No. 1 of the best week off at home: Plan ahead.You don’t need to stay in a hotel and play tourist to have a proper staycation. Look no further than your own home for a staycay dreams are made

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5 Ways Youre Destroying Your Lawn

A beautiful, well-manicured lawn is a source of great pride for many homeowners. Maintaining a healthy lawn takes work and hours of TLC, including regular watering, cutting, and laying down

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6 Easy Mistakes To Avoid With Hardwood Installation

When it comes to do-it-yourself renovation jobs, hardwood installation can seem deceptively easy. All you need are a nail gun, kneepads, a steady hand, and a whole lot of wood.Right?But laying

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13 Simple Steps To Prep Your Home For The Best Summer Ever

Take care of your home's hot-weather needs now, and you'll have more time for fun in the sun.Summer will be here before you know it, and you know what that means: Heat, hornets and yard work.If’

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What You Need To Know About Buying A House In Summer 2018

Want more house for your money? Flexibility is in this season.The sun is high and hot—and so is the competition for buying a home.Thinking about buying a home this summer? The sunniest time of

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Mothers Day Ideas That Dont Involve Brunch

If you need a break from the Portland brunch craze but aren’t sure what to do for Mother's’ Day this year, don’t you worry. Here are a few ideas that will hopefully allow you to avoid the

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Old House Vs New House Which Is Better To Buy

Old house versus new house: If you're shopping for a place to live, this may be one of your primary decisions. Is it better to buy brand-new? Or do homes, like wine, get better with time? It turns

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5 Rules For What You Can And Cant Take When You Sell Your House

When standup comedian Nathan Brannon moved into his newly purchased home in rural Washington state, it seemed the joke was on him: The previous owner had left the pegboard on the garage wall, but

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5 Surprising Speedbumps That Can Slow Down A Home Sale

baloon111/iStockOnce home buyers and sellers have negotiated their way to an offer and have a closing date on the books, you'd think they're totally in the clear, right? Well ... not necessarily

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6 Tips For House Hunting In One Day

In the ideal home-buying scenario, attending open houses and pinpointing the perfect place is a breeze. But in a seller's market, finding a home is no small feat, which is why it's important to make

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Beginners Guide To Budgeting For New Homeowners

If you’ve reached the homeowners stage, you most likely have a general idea of your finances. Making the transition from budgeting as a renter and budgeting to save for a home to being a full

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How Much Below The Asking Price Should You Offer On A House

asiseeit/iStockHow much below asking price should you offer on a house? Or is it something you shouldn't try at all? The not-so-simple answer: It all depends on the market you're in and other

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Caring For Pets During A Move

You love your pets. They are part of the family, after all. However, when moving to a new home it can be easy to forget that uprooting pets from their usual space can be a disorienting and upsetting

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Is A Mortgage Transfer Possible

iStockIs a mortgage transfer possible—where you hand off a home loan from one person to another? The answer is usually no. When you sell your home, the buyers have to get their own mortgage and

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How To Meet Your Neighbors

Hero Images/Getty ImagesWant to know the secret of how to meet your neighbors after you've moved into a new home? It's this: Stop waiting for people to swing by with an apple pie. These days you

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Easy Meals To Make When You Are In The Middle Of A Move

Moving is typically a time of stress and insanity, so who has time to cook? I mean, your pans are packed, your cookbooks are who knows where, and none of your kitchen staples have been restocked.

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Is An AllCash Offer On A House Always A Good Idea

iStockAh, the all-cash offer. If you're a home buyer with this ace up your sleeve, you probably have a swagger in your step as you tour homes, looking for the perfect property. Home sellers swoon

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5 Things Not To Bother Fixing Before You Sell Your Home

iStockSelling your home? Then you've likely had that rude awakening where a real estate agent tours your home and breaks some tough news: Your house needs work before it goes on the market.For

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7 Things To Consider Before Buying A Home In The Country

iStockChances are good you've probably imagined—at some time or another—what it would be like to give up your daily grind, uproot, and move to the country. Buying a home in the country would

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How Long Does A Furnace Last And The Warning Signs That It Needs To Be Replaced

Design Pics/Getty ImagesHow long does a furnace last and what exactly does it do for your home? The furnace is one of the most important appliances in your home, as it keeps you and your loved ones

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Gardening Tips For Portlands Climate

As we settle into the spring season, gardening is on the mind. If you are new to the rainy and mild Portland climate, or maybe you just have a yard for the first time, here are some beginner’s

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8 Times Bargain Hunting For A Home Can Backfire

iStockEverybody loves a bargain. But getting one handed to you, gift-wrapped, in this housing market? Fat chance.Limited inventory has boosted prices, and in many cities, sellers have the big end of

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What Is A Closing Disclosure Form

iStockWhat is a closing disclosure form? Put simply, it's a form outlining the terms and costs of your mortgage—and one of the most important pieces of paperwork to check before you close on a.

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8 Secrets To Buying A Home Out Of State Without The Risk Of Remorse

iStockBuying a home is stressful. Buying a home out of state? That's downright scary.We probably don't have to tell you why: You won't typically have the luxury of being able to spend hours touring

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Where To Brunch Right This Easter Sunday

Welcome to Portland. Grab a mimosa and get ready to brunch. It’s what we do here- holidays included. Check out this list of brunch spots to help you do Easter the Portland way. Portland

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The Rooms That Will Make Buyers Bail Even If They Love The House

iStockIn my yearlong house hunt, I've toured countless homes, and that first visit is a lot like a first date. It can be going great, right up until you spot your personal deal killer—like a pack

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Home Staging Ideas For Your Garage

Photo by Garage Guru Enlightened Storage/HouzzNeed some home staging ideas for you garage? Yup, this grease-covered dumping ground that serves as a "home" for your car (at least

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