Contingent Offers Are Useful for Buyers, but Will They Turn Off Sellers?

If we made a contingent offer, can we still lose the house? If this is a question you've been mulling over, welcome to the challenge of selling one home while purchasing another!When homeowners decide it's time to move to another house, they face the quandary of deciding whether to wait until their old place sells before looking for a new home. Waiting generally makes it more financially feasible to purchase a new home, but you risk having to rush around to find a suitable place Read more [...]

8 Reasons to Sell Your Home with an Agent

The “For sale by owner” (FSBO) method seems a great way to save thousands of dollars when you sell your home. Afterall, the standard real-estate agent's commission is 6% – that's $15,000 on a $250,000 home. Given the size of this fee, you may think that acting as your own seller's agent will surely be worth the savings. Here are eight reasons you should think again. (See also: A Guide to Buying a House in the U.S.) In a for-sale-by-owner deal, the buyer’s agent knows there Read more [...]

9 Bold and Beautiful Backsplash Designs That Will Transform Your Kitchen

Backsplash—it's the design detail that can take your kitchen from blah to beautiful.Of course, at its core, a backsplash is meant to be functional—a protective backboard to catch spills and prevent stains behind your stove or sink. But it's also a blank canvas just waiting for your personal stamp. And boy, are homeowners having fun with it. Gone are the days of square beige tiles. Today, you have a whole host of backsplash design choices—each one brighter, funkier, and more Read more [...]

How to Organize Your Refrigerator (Because It’s Gross)

"How do you organize a refrigerator?" is a question that, for most of us, simply doesn't get asked enough. You pile your groceries in, and it’s not until you find moldy broccoli buried beneath a 2-month-old burrito (or at least what you think might have been a burrito) that it dawns on you: Yuck. It's time to clean this sucker! If you’re finding that you have to rummage endlessly for that bottle of rose or never lay your eyes on fruit until it's too far gone, then read Read more [...]

How Amazon Will Be Worth $1.6 Trillion in Less Than a Decade

The race to be the first $1 trillion company has Apple Inc. (AAPL) as heavy favorite. With a current market cap of $834 billion, and nearly $200 billion more valuable than second place Alphabet Inc. (GOOGL), parent company of Google, it's hard to see anyone catching the California-based tech giant. However, Stamford-based MKM Partners believes if Amazon.com Inc. (AMZN) is willing to continue its spending spree and take on more risk it has the potential to grow to astronomical levels. "Our Read more [...]

Top 3 Health Insurance Options If You Retire Early

Voluntarily walking away from a productive career presents early retirees with a number of weighty considerations. One of the first: health insurance. Individuals who retire prior to age 65, when Medicare eligibility begins, need to find alternate options to cover medical, hospitalization and prescription drug costs . And that is no small issue. Health insurance premiums can chew up a considerable chunk of post-retirement income. Consequently, retirees under the age of 65 must examine all Read more [...]

Yes, You Can Sell a Fixer-Upper As Is, but Should You?

So your home has foundation problems and you just got an estimate for fixing it. Ouch! Or maybe a leak in your roof has led to the discovery that the entire thing needs to be replaced. Or termites have been eating their way through the wood frame of your home, and you’re just now catching on. Whatever the calamity, you always have the option of selling your home even if it needs major repairs. But does it make more sense to sell your house  as is, or put big bucks toward a renovation?Selling Read more [...]

7 Ways To Increase Your Home’s Appraisal Value

When you’re selling a home or refinancing, an appraisal is likely to be part of the process. The job of the appraiser is to determine what your home is worth on the current market, which may be a very different number from what you paid for it. If you’re fortunate, your home will have risen in value during the time you’ve lived there, making selling it at a profit or successfully refinancing your mortgage easier. But if the appraiser puts a lower value on your home, as was Read more [...]

5 Problems with Buying a House with a Friend

Buying an investment property can be a smart financial move. As you pay down the debt, you build equity in a property that – at least ideally – appreciates over time. Then there are the tax benefits. You get to deduct your rental expenses from any income you earn, including items such as mortgage interest, property taxes, insurance, repair and maintenance costs, and property management, all of which saves you money at tax time. Ideally, the investment property also provides a Read more [...]

Reflect on This: 3 Things You Should Never Do With Mirrors—and 5 Things You Should

In the world of home decor, mirrors can be a magical design tool. They can brighten a dark room. They can make a tiny space look much bigger. And they can add an affordable touch of glamour to even the most ordinary of spaces.But you shouldn't hang mirrors just anywhere. Decorating with mirrors comes with a few rules, some of which pertain to feng shui, or the art of using space and alignment in the home to promote good energy. And some of them simply pertain to simple standards of Read more [...]