Homeowner’s Toolkit Archive
Most of us have dreamt of having a vacation home. It could be on the beach in New England, somewhere tropical, or even somewhere foreign. Many consumers don't realize that with the proper research, their dream vacation home might actually be in reach. Instead of visualizing how relaxing vacations and weekend getaways could be, why not try to make your second home a reality?
The first step to purchasing a second home is organizing your finances to make sure you can afford it without compromising the security of your other assets.
Just three weeks after Congress restored $40 million in its budget for homeownership counseling, a new study by the Urban Institute reports that counseling greatly increased the ability of homeowners to stay current once they cured a serious delinquency or foreclosure.
For sellers with homes on the market or for newly moved-in buyers, fixing up your home can be a worthwhile and satisfying process. Needless to say, the home improvement process can potentially be daunting when trying to keep track of room sizes, paint swatches, project information and more. With Lowe’s new MyLowe’s initiative, consumers have a revolutionary new way to maintain, manage and track all things relating to the home, making home improvement that much more simple.
By registering for a MyLowe’s card, consumers can keep track of all purchases made online and in Lowe’s stores. From the shade of deck stain used on the garage last spring to the paint color used in a particular room, logging in to a MyLowe’s account will display a customer’s entire purchase history.
These days, it seems that all we hear about are problems. The crisis of the day may vary a bit depending on the network you happen to be watching or newspaper you’re reading, but the theme is basically the same: sustained unemployment, distressed homeowners, dire economy…and not necessarily in that order. Experts say that the only way to turn the tide is to attack the root of the problem—consumer confidence. But how does one improve consumer confidence in such murky times? Simple, says EquityLock—protect the value of their homes.
The holidays are fast approaching. Regardless of what denomination you are- the next couple of months are probably going to be more hectic than most as you prepare to conclude 2011 with friends and family. If your home is on the market, this time of year is also particularly tricky. Fortunately there is great advice for those of you looking to get your home sold during the holiday season (And it doesn't include taking your house off the market).
Regardless of the time of year, most home stagers will advise a seller to remove as many personal items and decorations as possible, "Less is more." This includes photos, trophies, and even your son's gallery of refrigerator artwork. To you this might make your home feel cold and impersonal, but it allows a potential buyer to envision themselves living in your house—thus upping your odds of making the sale.
The Alliance to Save Energy urges American consumers to give themselves the gift of energy efficiency this holiday season—and reap the benefits when they file their 2011 federal tax returns—by taking advantage of tax credits for energy efficiency home improvements.
If your home will be for sale this winter, it is important to master certain seasonal issues that are less significant or even non-existent at other times of the year. Here are 10 bits of sage advice from RE/MAX agents that can help put a “Sold” sticker on that yard sign.
Let Those Lights Shine: The best way to combat winter’s short and frequently cloudy days is to turn on your house lights. For a showing, every single light in the house must be on, even in the closets and utility/mechanical rooms, according to Marlene Granacki of RE/MAX Exclusive Properties, Chicago.
When the Obama administration rolled out the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) in 2009, officials estimated 3 to 4 million borrowers would seek relief from their mortgages through the program amidst the worst recession and housing market collapse in decades.
More than two years later, those projections have proven to be optimistic, to say the least. According to the Treasury Department, about 700,000 homeowners had sought aid from HAMP through the third quarter of 2011.
Between work, school, the kids and all your regular daily responsibilities, getting your home in order for the holidays can quickly become an overwhelming experience. Peggy Patenaude, a REALTOR® with Prudential Howe & Doherty in Andover, Mass. offers these great tips for getting the job done
Freddie Mac (OTC: FMCC) released the results of its third quarter refinance analysis showing homeowners who refinance continue to strengthen their fiscal house by maintaining or reducing their mortgage debt.
In the third quarter of 2011, 82 percent of homeowners who refinanced their first-lien home mortgage either maintained about the same loan amount or lowered their principal balance by paying-in additional money at the closing table. Of these borrowers, 44 percent maintained about the same loan amount, and 37 percent of refinancing homeowners reduced their principal balance.
The organizational benefits of downsizing can be very rewarding. You can save time, restore order, relieve stress, free up space, and perhaps most importantly, save money.
As temperatures dip and fall settles in with the promise of winter ahead, home owners need to pay extra attention to certain details in order to set themselves apart from the competition.
1. Maintain your landscape. Flowers aren't exactly flourishing this time of year but sellers should still make the most of what they have. Adding fall flowers like mums to your front porch or deck is always a nice touch. More importantly grass should be cut at least once per week and leaves should be cleared as much as possible.
Rates were already low at the start of the quarter, but following the Fed's announcement last week, the national average rate on a traditional 30 year fixed rate mortgage has inched lower. Informa Research Services, a subsidiary of Informa plc (LSE: INF), encourages qualified homeowners to take advantage
A home inspection is a crucial component of making a smart home-buying decision. According to Jay Gregg, director of marketing for Pillar To Post, not all home inspections are equal. Gregg, who has experience in home inspections, sales marketing and as a previous Pillar To Post franchisee,
Bathroom renovations have become extremely popular in recent years. Many consumers choose to renovate their bathroom before any other room; not only is the bathroom a major focal point when it comes time to sell,