If you pay attention to the news, you’ve likely heard mortgage rates have been at historically low levels for most of this year. It seems every time the experts think the numbers have gone as low as they can, they push even further down. But exactly what does all that mean and how might it impact you? Whether you’re looking to buy your first home, make a move or try for a better rate on an existing mortgage, this all means it could be the perfect time to get the most favorable rate that will ever be available in your lifetime. Read on →

Common knowledge and hard data tell us spring is the right time to sell a home because everything looks better as the world turns green and blooms. It’s also the time when buyers’ wallets thaw and they start looking to buy after winter hibernations. Still, that does not mean fall is a bad time to sell a home. To be sure, it has its appeal, including that everyone following that spring wisdom means there are fewer homes on the market. Read on →

Renovating a home, whether you’re fixing it up to make it more livable or to increase its value for selling it, can be a big project. Or more often, a series of big projects, each with its own challenges. It helps to come into it all with a leg-up, some insider knowledge that’s likely to help you be successful in all that work. Fortunately for you, we’ve compiled some great reno tips in one place so you have that head-start. Read on →

Foreclosed properties provide plenty of potential benefits for buyers, starting with the possibility they’ll get an incredible deal on a great piece of real estate. The lure of getting a bargain is enough to entice plenty of buyers foreclosed properties, which is great, particularly for those who might otherwise not be able to afford such a home. However, if you’re considering purchasing a foreclosed property, there are a few risks beyond those that are part of the standard homebuying process that you should keep in mind: Read on →

If you’ve spent any time reading or listening to the news, you’ve likely heard mention of “the Fed,” a somewhat ominous and very mysterious organization that seems to have tremendous power. But what exactly is the Fed and what does it have to do with the price of tea? In actuality, the Fed, short for Federal Reserve, has a lot to do with the cost of just about everything, including how much you have to pay for a home. Read on →

If you’ve spent any time looking at pictures of homes for sale, going to open house events or even watching home shows on TV, you’ve seen staging. If it was done well, you didn’t even notice you were looking at it, though. Staging, quite simply, is a bit of marketing used in home sales. It ranges from the simple (putting out some vases of fresh flowers and lighting a candle or two) to the very involved, which might include bringing in a complete house’s worth of brand-new furniture. Read on →

For many first-time buyers, one of the most significant surprises of purchasing a home is the monthly private mortgage insurance charge tacked onto their payments. For those just starting out who don’t have a significant down payment saved up, the cost is predictable but often unexpected. Private mortgage insurance (PMI) is typically collected by the lender on conventional loans funded with down payments of less than 20%. It provides a bit of protection for lenders against default and thereby helps keeps rates for everyone lower since it helps cover costs of default. Read on →

Summer is the season of the honeydew and the honey-do, the time when we get to all those home projects that are either impossible or too unpleasant during colder times. We’re in the thick of it now, but before you know it we’ll be digging out our winter coats again. If you haven’t gotten to all the items on your list for this summer or don’t know where to start, here are some projects that are perfect for this season and can even prepare you for the ones ahead: Read on →

When it comes to water leaks in your home, some are obvious because they leave floors soggy or mark walls or ceilings with stains. However, other water loss can be hidden—and you may not realize it’s happening, though you might notice your utility bills climbing. Whether you suspect there’s a leak somewhere or you don’t yet have a reason to think anything’s going on, there are some signs you can keep an eye out for to help you discover water loss. Read on →

If you pay attention to home improvement shows or publications, there’s a good chance you know there are some home improvement projects that can increase the resale value of your property. You may also know some projects many people expect to pay off in the end often don’t. Regardless of how much you know about what projects pay dividends and which don’t, here are some pointers on choosing efforts that will actually help when it comes time to sell. Read on →