Thanks to websites like Houzz and Pinterest and TV networks like HGTV and DIY, it's easier than ever to keep up with home decorating trends and find inspiration for improving your own home. Here are five of the top current interior design trends.
Screen-free rooms After a long day of using your smartphone and computer, it can feel amazing to take a technology break. More and more, homeowners are creating specific screen-free rooms-perhaps a library, craft room, or listening room where you can escape from technology for a while.
Upholstered headboards What if you could feel like you were sleeping in a luxury hotel bed every night? The bedding and mattress are an important part of that experience, but so are the aesthetic and comfort of an upholstered he...
There's no more important time to work on your credit score than when you're about to apply for a mortgage. Improving your credit can save you a ton of money - we're talking about thousands of dollars over the life of the loan. Here are the actions you can take that will have a notable impact on your score.
Pay down your credit card balances Credit utilization is one of the biggest factors in determining your credit score. Your credit utilization should at least be less than 30 percent of your limit, and it's even better if you can get it below 15 percent. This rule applies to both individual cards and your overall credit limit. It may even be worthwhile to use some of the cash funds you were planning to use for a down payment to pay off credit card balances.<...>
Real estate agents love to tell you all of the things they'll do for you once you hire them to help you buy or sell a home, but here's a list of things I WON'T do when you hire me:
Display only one photo of your house in the Multiple Listing Service. The Multiple Listing Service (MLS) is a database in which all REALTORS can post and share their listings with other REALTORs. Once uploaded, the listings are shared with over 10,000 REALTORs in Michigan (who then shares the listings with their clients). Using the power of Listing Syndication, the homes in the MLS database are also shared with other home listing websites such as Zillow, Trulia, Realtor, and all the major broker websites and home search sites. Buyers want to see multiple photos, not just one grainy photo of the front of your hous...
Moving into a new home is an exciting time, and you're probably daydreaming about decor and paint schemes and new furniture. But before you get into the fun stuff, there are some basics you should cover first.
Change the locks Even if you're promised that new locks have been installed in your home, you can never be too careful. It's worth the money to have the peace of mind that comes with knowing that no one else has the keys to your home. Changing the locks can be a DIY project, or you can call in a locksmith for a little extra money.
Steam clean the carpets It's good to get a fresh start with your floors before you start decorating. The previous owners may have had pets, young children, or just some plain old clumsiness. Take the time to steam clean the carpets so that...
You've most likely heard the rule: Save for a 20-percent down payment before you buy a home. The logic behind saving 20 percent is solid, as it shows that you have the financial discipline and stability to save for a long-term goal. It also helps you get favorable rates from lenders.
But there can actually be financial benefits to putting down a small down payment—as low as three percent—rather than parting with so much cash upfront, even if you have the money available.
The downside of a small down payment is pretty well known. You'll have to pay Private Mortgage Insurance for years, and the lower your down payment, the more you'll pay. You'll also be offered a lesser loan amount than borrowers who have a 20-percent down payment, which will eliminate some homes from ...
What's your target move-in date? Are you trying to time your home purchase to the end of a lease term? Were you hoping to be settled in before the start of school?
When you begin working with a real estate agent you should discuss your expectations and plans so everyone knows what to expect. Buying a home takes a little planning and preparation first. The housing market moves quickly, especially if the home has good features and is priced correctly.
Most people want to immediately jump into the house-hunting process by setting up showings. Sounds fun, but it could actually do more harm than good. What if you find "The Perfect House" before you've been preapproved? You're not ready to buy it. Unfortunately, the next family viewing the home is&hell...
When you own your home, things are going to break and unless you want to spend your money on visits from a neighborhood handyman, you're going to need to fix them yourself. Luckily, you don't need an arsenal of tools to handle most home maintenance fixes. These five tools will cover most of your basic projects.
Unfortunately, our homes don't always grow with us. What may have initially worked fine for a single person, a young couple's starter home, or a family with a newborn can quickly become too small as families expand and multiple generations live under one roof.
Remodeling and adding to your home is one option for creating more space, but it can be costly, and the size of your property may be prohibitive. That's when moving to a bigger home becomes the best solution.
WHERE DO YOU NEED MORE SPACE?
The first thought when upsizing your home is to simply consider square footage, bedrooms, and bathrooms. But it's important to take a more critical approach to how your space will actually be used. If you have younger children (or possibly more on the way), then focusing on bedrooms and bathrooms makes...