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6 easy, affordable smart home features that could help you sell your house faster
(BPT) - Fresh paint on the walls, professional staging and an asking price that ends in 999 — when you’re selling your home, you’ll do whatever you can to help it stand out and sell faster. Because the National Association of Realtors is predicting modest growth for the 2017 real estate market, as a ...
6 steps to close your home loan [Infographic]
(BPT) - Want to get on with your happily ever after? Just follow these six easy steps to apply for your home loan.SaveSave
4 hot bathroom design trends that don't have to cost a bundle
(BPT) - Coffee bars, TVs in mirrors, smart toilets and pet-friendly amenities — a growing number of homeowners are requesting such upscale features in their bathroom design, according to the National Kitchen and Bath Association (NKBA). Is it any wonder that association members report the average co ...
Plumbing the power of a powder room addition
(BPT) - Never underestimate the power of a powder room to make your home more livable and increase its resale value. Having more and nicer bathrooms consistently scores high in surveys on homeowners' wish lists. What's more, extra baths deliver more than just convenience; a National Association of R ...
Where there is a will - and more - there's peace of mind
(BPT) - What’s the state of your estate? Robert Fishbein, a vice president and corporate counsel in Prudential Financial's Tax Department, says now's a good time to find out.Changes in federal estate tax law have significantly increased the amount at which federal estate tax is triggered, says Fishb ...
4 statement pieces to elevate your bathroom to a work of art
(BPT) - Investing in a bathroom upgrade is in the cards for nearly a quarter of homeowners planning to renovate within the next 12 months, according to a new survey by Bankrate.com. Improving a bathroom is rewarding on multiple levels; if you’re selling, buyers love great bathrooms. If you’re stayin ...
Beyond the front door: The benefits of working with a mortgage banker
(BPT) - So you’ve found your dream home. Before you start packing up, you’ll need to make some big decisions first, like finding the right mortgage. Mortgage decisions can be overwhelming, especially if you try to do it on your own. Your neighborhood mortgage banker can help you navigate this proces ...
New neutrals dominate the color trends of 2017
(BPT) - From furniture to walls, new homes to remodels, cool grays have dominated home design palettes for the last five years. Look to 2017 to gently shake things up with a focus on fresh neutrals that bring warm and cool tones together to create versatile color with timeless appeal.One of the most ...
How to get the most out of your lawn and snow tools
(BPT) - Remember when you actually had to leave the house to do things?Today, you could use your smartphone to do all your holiday shopping, order groceries and have them delivered, and then watch all the Oscar-nominated films without ever getting off the couch.It’s pretty amazing, but for all the c ...
Bathroom renovations even the pickiest in-laws will love
(BPT) - While the approach of the holidays has many people focused on gift lists and celebrations, you're thinking about the guest bathroom. More specifically, you're thinking about your mother-in-law's commentary on the dripping showerhead, your brother-in-law's judgment of the archaic toilet that ...
4 tips to help keep your home warm, comfortable and energy efficient this winter
(BPT) - With winter comes the holiday season, a time that’s supposed to be associated with “comfort and joy.” But how joyful will it be if pests invade your house, or if your home is cold and drafty? Help stay warm all winter long by addressing factors like air leaks from gaps and cracks that can ma ...
5 home-building secrets you should know
(BPT) - Thousands of Americans who are in the process of building their own home, or simply looking into it, are faced with hundreds of different questions. Granite or quartz countertops? Neutral or bold colors? Tile or hardwood flooring? And those questions are just the tip of the iceberg.Being abl ...
DIY projects to increase the resale value of your home
(BPT) - Whatever you’re passionate about, you know hobbies cost money. People who haven’t shaken the travel bug need to negotiate time off work, pay for lodging, airfare and more. If you’re a big football fan, the amount you spend on food, snacks, game tickets and clothing adds up during the course ...
3 reasons why winter is a smart time to buy a home
(BPT) - Don't give up on buying a home as winter nears. In fact, December through February may be better for buyers than the busy season in spring and summer.Enjoy less competition and lower prices.Fewer properties are typically available during the winter, as sellers and buyers aim to complete tran ...
The surprising way to stretch your retirement savings
(BPT) - The temptation to start collecting monthly Social Security checks at age 62 is hard to resist, but claiming the benefit too early can have damaging consequences for your overall retirement funds. According to Kiplinger.com's October list of "Financial Decisions You Will Regret in Retirement, ...
An affordable way to qualify for a home loan without that big down payment
(BPT) - For many Americans, the biggest hurdle in buying a home is the 20 percent down payment they think is required for mortgage approval. According to a recent survey by the National Association of Realtors, 34 percent of respondents believe they need more than 20 percent. Meanwhile, low down pay ...
These online tools can help you find a mortgage that fits
(BPT) - Whether you’re a first-time or experienced homebuyer, chances are a good portion of your real estate journey will take place online. In fact, four in 10 homebuyers start their house-hunting with an online search, according to the National Association of REALTORS. It’s easy to understand why: ...
Autumn and early winter: The best times to be a homebuyer?
(BPT) - The long-held belief that summer is the only time to buy a home is fading fast. Savvy home-buyers are learning that when temperatures drop, numerous benefits emerge that simply aren't available other times of the year."With warm weather and many homes on the market, summer is generally the b ...
The rise of the basement: Top tips for a better space
(BPT) - With fewer homes for sale and good returns on the remodeling investment, more homeowners are reclaiming their lower levels and remodeling their basements.Basements are coming out of hiding these days. And they're doing it in style, with before-and-after transformations featured everywhere fr ...
5 residential design trends in hardwood
(BPT) - Hardwood may be one of the oldest building materials known to man, yet architects, designers and homeowners are always finding fresh ways to use it in the modern home. What’s the appeal? Flexibility and variety, for starters.“We’re constantly delighted to see how traditional woods like oak a ...
3 surprising home elements you can automate
(BPT) - Just a decade or two ago, home automation was still something of a novelty. Some homeowners might have had programmable thermostats in their homes, but many probably hadn’t thought of automating things like window coverings. Moreover, they likely viewed any home automation they did have as a ...
4 DIY projects for your first home
(BPT) - “Where should I start?” It's a question many homeowners ask themselves.DIY is a great place to start for new homeowners. DIY projects are very versatile — they can easily be adapted to your skill level, budget and desired project. With a little extra time and creativity, you can transform yo ...
Tips for creating a virtually self-cleaning bathroom
(BPT) - Americans may be spending less time on housework, but that’s probably not much consolation when you’re scrubbing the toilet for the third time in a week. Meanwhile, hours spent working are taking more of our time, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ American Time Use Surve ...
Fall: Best season for planting trees that boost home and community value
(BPT) - Planting a tree is an investment in the future, according to a Greek proverb: 'A society grows great when old men plant trees under whose shade they never expect to sit.' But did you know planting trees around your home is also an investment in your real estate value and the value of your ne ...
4 Smart Reasons to Upgrade Your Home Security System
(BPT) - Think of what has changed forever in the span of a decade. How do you watch movies at home? You've replaced the DVDs with digital streaming. How do you send a picture of your kids to your parents? You skip the printing and post it on social media or send a quick text.Another thing you can ad ...
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