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June 2013

There are 7 blog entries for June 2013.

Leave Your Home Vacant? You Could Lose Insurance Coverage

By: Dona DeZube

Published: October 4, 2011

Do the geese flying south have you thinking of closing up your house and spending the winter in a warmer climate? Before you pack your swimsuit and sandals, take note: If you leave your house empty for too long, you could lose your home owners insurance -- and your home equity if a fire or other disaster destroys or damages your house.

Do the geese flying south have you thinking of closing up your house and spending the winter in a warmer climate? Are you moving out of town and trying to rent your old home? Before you pack your swimsuit and sandals, take note: If you leave your house empty for too long, you could lose your home owners

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Impact of Rising Mortgage Rates on Home Sales

On June 3, 2013, in Economist Commentaries, by Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist More Sharing ServicesShare|Share on emailShare on facebookShare on twitterShare on print

Mortgage rates will continue to rise. They will probably be near 5 percent by this time next year, compared to the 3.5 percent average of the past 12 months. The rates will be even higher in 2015 and 2016. Certainly, rising rates are bad news for buyers and some potential homebuyers will be pushed out of the market. For example, the number of renter households that have sufficient income to buy a $177,000 home at a 3.5 percent mortgage rate is 17.8 million. The number drops to 14.9 million at a 5.0 percent mortgage rate, which is

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Is Your Tree Going to Fall Over?

By: Lisa Kaplan Gordon

Published: April 5, 2013

Sometimes a valuable tree uproots without warning; but most often, your tree sends distress signals before it topples.

How to Inspect Your Trees

No one knows your trees as well as you. So after they leaf out in the spring, leaf off in the fall, and after a big storm, walk around and look at your lovelies, top to bottom, noticing changes in foliage, branches, roots, and bark.

  • Inspect all sides of the tree, both up close and from a distance.
  • Check for cuts in or peeling bark.
  • Use binoculars to inspect the tree’s crown for dead wood and brown leaves.

Leaning Trees

Trees usually don’t grow straight, and a little lean is normal. But when your tree

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6 Tips for Buying a Home in a Short Sale

By: G. M. Filisko

Published: March 19, 2010

By preparing for a real estate short sale, you can emerge with a great home at a favorable price.

1. Get help from a short sale expert

A real estate agent experienced in short sales can identify which homes are being offered as short sales, help you determine a purchase price, and advise you on what to include in your offer to make the lender view it favorably. Ask agents how many buyers they've represented in short sales and, of those, how many successfully closed the transaction.

2. Build a team

Ask agents to recommend real estate attorneys knowledgeable in short sales and title experts. A title officer can do a title search to identify all the liens

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Visit HouseLogic.com for more articles like this. Reprinted from HouseLogic.com with permission of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®." www.HouseLogic.com  

A Financial Plan for Your Home

By: Richard Koreto

Published: December 31, 2012

Your home is probably your biggest investment. To manage it, create a financial plan that takes into account repairs, upgrades, mortgages, insurance, and taxes.

Use our home financial plan budget worksheet, and start by writing a list of expenses, such as:

  • Mortgage
  • Taxes
  • Home insurance, including liability
  • Repairs and maintenance, such as new furnace, roof, painting
  • Voluntary upgrades, such as a swimming pool, a premium range, a new powder room

What will you learn from

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Extend the Outdoor Living Season

By: Jan Soults Walker

Published: October 3, 2011

Make an outdoor living area comfy long after the sun sets or the leaves turn with outdoor lighting, a patio heater, and a glowing firepit or portable fireplace.

 

With both lighting types, you can:

  • Light deck railings and stairs
  • Define the patio perimeter
  • Illuminate the edges of paths and walkways
  • Draw attention to a planter or tree

Other fixtures light up dining tables, grill surfaces, and even underwater in swimming pools.

Low-voltage fixtures clip onto a safe, 12-volt cable connected to a transformer, which plugs into a GFCI-protected 120-volt electrical outlet. A timer or light-sensitive control automatically turns lights on and

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Your Guide to Choosing Patio Pavers

By: Andrea Nordstrom Caughey

Published: April 9, 2013

There are so many options on the market for patio pavers, it can be hard to choose. So we’ve done the research to help you make the right choice for your home.

Brick pavers come in a variety of shapes, sizes, colors, and finishes, and can look old or new. Because they’re smaller than other pavers, they take a while to put in place, and installation costs can be higher.

You can do the job yourself for $3 to $5 per sq. ft. You’ll need to rent a brick saw — a heavy table-mounted saw that makes cutting masonry a snap. Cost: $60-$95/day. Don’t forget: You’ll need to figure out a way to get the brick saw to your house.

For a pro-installed brick patio, you’ll pay

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