A Closer Look at Online Home Value Estimates

Thursday, September 20th, 2018
Denise Rivers

Consumers who are seriously in the home-buying and -selling market should be mindful of a variety of competing home price estimators. Solely relying on just one price estimate is likely to skew the views of what a particular property will actually transact for. When it comes to online home value estimates, however, the No. 1 caveat for consumers is that these estimates are not a substitute for formal appraisals, comparative market analyses and the in-depth expertise of real estate professionals. Nonetheless, it is important to know the different sources of automated valuation models (or AVMs) and home value estimates available online, so that you can help clients and potential clients understand these estimates in their proper context.

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What Is a Jumbo Mortgage and When Do You Need One?

Thursday, September 13th, 2018
Denise Rivers

Home prices have shot up in some areas of the U.S., to the point where buyers need jumbo loans to finance them. In mortgage-speak, jumbo refers to loans that exceed the limits set by the government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs) that buy most home loans and package them for investors.

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At Home in Retirement: Boomers Facing a Hard Truth

Thursday, September 6th, 2018
Denise Rivers

Baby boomers are on the cusp of retirement, but the ability to afford their desired lifestyle is at odds with their preferences, according to a recent report by The NHP Foundation (NHPF), an affordable housing nonprofit.

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A Handy Guide to Starting a Home Remodel

Thursday, August 30th, 2018
Denise Rivers

Apprehension and inexperience keep many homeowners from pursuing renovation projects that would make their homes more functional, enjoyable and comfortable. Getting your hands dirty on the front end—with some planning and preparation – is the best blueprint for a successful home remodeling project.

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Smart Homes: The Way of the Future or a Risk to Homeowners?

Thursday, August 23rd, 2018
Denise Rivers

Glitches of early iterations aside, AI-based technology has come a long way, and has an increasingly active presence in the lives of homeowners who are looking for convenience and savings in a pushed-for-time era. From adaptive thermostats that automatically gauge energy usage and alter temperatures for optimal savings, to smart home speakers that use sophisticated artificial intelligence to provide services and information in real-time, a smart homeowner can now cross off a variety of menial tasks from their daily to-do list without doing more than speaking a phrase out loud or clicking a button on their mobile device.

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Not knowing your mortgage rate can be an expensive mistake, especially in this rising interest rate market. Yet nearly three in 10 mortgage holders (29 percent) either didn’t know their mortgage rate or wouldn’t say, according to a survey by Bankrate.

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Student loan debt is one of the biggest factors impacting millennials’ ability to purchase a home. According to the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR), 80 percent of millennials do not own a home, and, of that, 83 percent say student loan debt is impacting their ability to buy. Millennials expect to be delayed from home-buying for a median of seven years, the NAR research shows.

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The Hottest Patio Trends This Summer

Thursday, August 2nd, 2018
Denise Rivers

Summer patio season is ramping up. The experts at Infratec say that outdoor design trends for 2018 are all about incorporating affordable luxury into your own backyard by turning your patio into a peaceful, lush oasis through low-maintenance water fixtures, a color refresh and vintage materials.

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How Long Do Most Families Live In A House?

Thursday, July 26th, 2018
Denise Rivers

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) keeps historical data on many aspects of homeownership. One of their data points, which has changed dramatically, is the median tenure of a family in a home, meaning how long a family stays in a home prior to moving.

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Homes More Affordable Today Than 1985-2000

Thursday, July 19th, 2018
Denise Rivers

Rising home prices have many concerned that the average family will no longer be able to afford the most precious piece of the American Dream – their own home.

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