Not all home improvements are created equal. Even in a seller’s market, it’s important that homeowners make the right investments that will yield higher returns. As you guide your clients toward a profitable sale, make sure you’re an expert on the top 10 home improvement myths so you can prevent your clients from believing them.
Top 10 Home Improvement Myths
1. Any remodeling project will add value to your home.
While many remodeling projects will add value to a home, some can be seen as a negative by future buyers. For instance, combining two smaller bedrooms to create one larger bedroom may better fit one homeowner’s lifestyle today, but it may cause the home to lose value ...
FOR many recent college graduates, the dream of owning a home may have to be postponed awhile as they first grapple with repaying mounds of education loans.
Outstanding student loan debt now totals over $1 trillion, according to a report last month from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. That surpasses the amount owned on all credit cards in the United States.
Student debt has become an issue in the presidential race, with both President Obama and Mitt Romney, the presumed Republican nominee, supporting efforts to extend loan subsidies set to expire in July.
Last year alone, students took out $117 billion just in federal loans. And it’s no wonder: According to the Colleg...
New Septic Regulations for New Jersey A new wastewater regulation was adopted by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP), and took effect on April 2, 2012. The new regulation concerns septic systems and inspection requirements for all real property transfers. For further information, please consult the NJDEP website at
A number of factors influence the price of a home. These factors can include the property's condition and location, as well as current market conditions and interest rates. But the land on which the property sits can also influence its value. Although some people believe that a buyer will pay more for a larger piece of land, a lot's size is not always as important as its usefulness.
A home that is situated on a flat lot may sell for more than the same home if it were on a large, steep piece of property. Homebuyers typically prefer homes that offer level areas that will provide a place for children and pets to play, as well as a place to plant a garden. If a sloping lot has positive attri...
You want the peace of mind that comes from knowing your home and its contents are covered by your insurance policy, but it can be difficult to determine how much coverage you need. A recent study found that 70 percent of all homes in America are underinsured and most of those are underinsured by at least 30 percent. If yours is one of those homes, you may be faced with substantial out-of-pocket expenses if disaster ever strikes. To be safe, you should meet with your insurance agent to discuss your policy's coverage limits.
Be aware of all your options when updating your policy. Consider an insurance company that offers total-component estimating. This method figures the cost to repair an...
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The relentless decline in home prices is nearing an end and prices should rise for the first time in seven years in 2013, but a possible new wave of foreclosures could threaten the recovery, according a Reuters poll of economists.
The median forecast of 24 economists polled by Reuters was for the S&P/Case-Shiller 20-city home price index to end the year unchanged. That was the same finding back in January for this house price gauge, which covers 20 cities.
"We are expecting a gradual improvement, but if we get a big wave of new foreclosures coming to the market, price declines could be even greater," said Yelena Shulyatyeva, an economist at BNP Paribas in ...
It's the least favorite thing for many sellers, packing up their homes and relocating to a new home or even a new state.
Most people associate moving with stress but it doesn't have to take the thrill of moving into a new home away. Preparation and careful planning can not only ward off the stress but also save you money.
Here are some quick tips to help you move out of your old home and into your new one with ease and comfort.
Get organized. Moves are often a chaotic mess. Very often the sale goes through and sellers scramble to get their belongings packed up and loaded into the trucks. Then when they get to their new home, there isn't a trace of organization.
Q: I'm thinking of putting my home on the market and need to know its square footage. How do I calculate my home's square footage?
A: The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) offers these suggestions for measuring your home's square footage:
Always start by measuring the outside of the house. Begin measuring from any corner and work your way around the house. Move counter-clockwise so the numbers on your tape will be right-side-up.
Measure from the exterior face of the walls. Include any features that are on the same level as the floor, such as chimneys and bay windows.
If there are stairs, include them on every level they serve.
When there are openings to the flo...
Look for water stains where the deck ties to the house. Ongoing water leakage can lead to wood decay, weakening the deck structure and the house. If you have any doubt about the structural integrity of the deck, call a pro to investigate.
Rid your deck of moss and mold. Pressure washers are effective. Remember, if you see wood damage, like raised fibers, increase the distance between the spray nozzle and the decking.
CRrecommends an electric pressure washer. It’s quieter and easier to store and transport than a g...
Over the next two decades, the aging baby boomer generation will swell the nation’s senior population by 30 million. That demographic shift will likely help increase the supply of housing, since people over ...
For people who love old houses — and love to work on them — the notion of buying a fixer-upper can be irresistible. Just think: You can snag a rundown place in a good neighborhood for way below market price, invest some time and money renovating it, and end up with a like-new house that's worth at least twice what you paid for it. Sounds good, right? Often, it is. But buying a fixer-upper can be fraught with peril. So before you take the plunge, make sure you have a realistic idea of what you're getting into.
"If people are unforgiving up front about assessing the costs of renovation, the value of the property and the neighborhood, and how much money they have, they can come ou...
SKIING down the mountain in the morning and golfing on the fairways in the afternoon, with just a five-minute drive in between? How can that be possible?
And yet it is exactly what some intrepid sportsmen are doing in the northwest corner of New Jersey, where the Crystal Springs/Mountain Creek resort in Sussex County continues to produce artificial snow, but has also opened its golf courses a full six weeks earlier than normal.
“We call it the ski-and-tee package,” said Bill Benneyan, the vice president for marketing at Mountain Creek. “It’s 50 degrees out, and there’s still snow on the mountain.”
Nevertheless, Mr. Benneyan said, ski business is down 15 percent at Mountain Cr...
Is it possible to double your home's living area without adding a single square foot?
Yes, and it's no joke. To pull it off, though, you need to change the way you think about the property right outside your home's walls. Rather than seeing it as leftover land to be prettied up with a few flower beds, consider it an integral, functioning extension of your home's interior.
The ground outside every house offers tremendous potential living space -- often several times the total square footage of the house itself. Yet more often than not, this valuable real estate is drastically underutilized. Even when a property is nominally "landscaped," it...
Buying or selling a home can be rewarding, although often stressful. To ease the pain, assemble a group of professionals to help you get the job done.
A good real estate agent can make the project a lot easier. Be sure to make your agent selection carefully. If you don't already have an agent with whom you've had a good prior experience, ask acquaintances who live in the area where you're buying or selling to recommend a well-respected, local agent.
Rapport is a very important component of the agent selection process. Your agent will act on your behalf with prospective buyers, other agents, contractors and inspectors, to name a few. Pick an agent you trust, respect and who has g...
IN this do-it-yourself era of online real estate listings, it is easy to find out what is on the market, visit open houses and even research sales data to come up with a reasonable price to offer for a home.
So why should a buyer bother using an agent?
In a nutshell: to protect his or her interests in an expensive, often complex purchase that can become even more complicated by the labyrinthine co-op approval process in New York City.
A buyer who relies on the seller’s agent to handle both sides of the deal may not hear about problems with the apartment or the building, or have a real advocate during contract negotiations.