A healthy tax refund can elicit dreams of momentary luxury. A massage-of-the-month club or a nice trip to Aruba may come to mind when you picture a couple thousand extra dollars in your bank account. One route you might consider, though, is investing your tax return in a smallish update to your home. While you won’t be able to do any major remodels, you can make some important changes that will put a smile on your face and add some value to your home.Replace your water taps with low-flow showerheads and fauce... read more
Buying a home without a down payment can be done, but it’s not as easy as it used to be. Zero down payment mortgages were pretty popular a decade ago, but the housing bubble burst brought with it stricter lending guidelines. It’s virtually impossible to get a conventional loan without a down payment of at least 3 to 5 percent of the home price.To qualify, you’ll need to have a good credit score and adequate income along with a lender that will work with you. Outside of credit unions, best bets can... read more
The spring and summer 2016 housing market continues to be challenging for residential home buyers but positive for sellers. A lack of housing inventory is expected to continue, particularly at the bottom end of the pricing spectrum, while buyer demand remains strong. Several factors will affect this year's housing market: Millennials will continue to be major players in the market, according to Realtor.com; last year they represented nearly a third of total housing sales in the country. As a generation, t... read more
Stress and Mess: The Link Between Clutter and Depression
We all know when life gets busy, it can be hard to be organized at home. Yet when it comes to your house, researchers say if your external space is filled with clutter, chances are your internal space needs tending as well.
A study conducted through UCLA's Center on Everyday Lives and Families showed that clutter can directly affect our mood, self-esteem and even our mental health. The study demonstrated a strong link between stress hormone levels... read more
Sellers: Increase the Value of Your Home
If you’re planning to place your home on the market over the next few months, invest in four key areas to maximize your profit.
De-clutter—The only investment this action step requires is your time. A clean, well organized home that is free of clutter presents a sense of spaciousness, even in a smaller house. Make it a priority to show off your floor plan, not the stuff that fills it. Go through every room and closet with an eye for non-n... read more