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5 Super Spring Decorating Ideas To Spruce Up Your Home

Around The Home , ,
With spring in full swing, now is a good time to begin decorating your home for the season. Whether you enjoy chic decorations that are budget-friendly or easy changes to create a fresh look, below are five quick ideas to brighten up your home for the season. Add a Pop of Color Spring is a good time to add color to your décor. Switch your tablecloth in the dining room for one with lighter colors. Cover decorative pillows with pastel pillowcases to lighten a room. Adding decorative centerpieces to tables that contain a pop of spring colors is also a…
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Case-Shiller Reports Energetic Annual Home Price Gains Nationally

Housing Analysis , ,
The most recent S&P/Case-Shiller Index showed all three composites posting double-digit increases over the last four quarters.  The national composite, which is the broadest based index, showed an increase of 10.2% annually. The 20-City composite posted even stronger annual growth at 10.9%. Click Here To Download The Full Report The Case-Shiller Index measures changes in home prices by tracking same-home sales using 10-City, 20-City and national housing markets; and the change in sales price from sale-to-sale. Detached, single-family residences are used in the Case-Shiller Index methodology and data is for closed purchase transactions only. 12 Of 20 Metro Markets Notch…
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Simple Ideas To Create An Outdoor Living Space For Your Home

Around The Home , ,
As the weather gets warmer, the desire to get outside and enjoy the fresh air begins to take hold. Having a place to entertain or just unwind can add a new dimension and enjoyment to your home. First, you have to decide what type of space you want to create. Whether you want to have an outdoor living room, a vacation-like spot or a place to meditate and enjoy nature, how you extend your living space is limited only by your imagination — and possibly your budget. Start with your vision and make a list of the things you want…
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Existing Home Sales Numbers Highest Since 2009

Housing Analysis , ,
The National Association of REALTORS reported that sales of existing homes in April reached 4.97 million on a seasonally-adjusted annual basis. Although this reading fell short of Wall Street's expectations of 5.00 million existing homes sold, it surpassed the March 2013 upwardly revised reading of 4.94 million existing home sales. This represents a 0.60 percent increase from March to April, and a 9.70 increase year-over-year. Low Mortgage Rates Contribute To High Sales Levels  Low mortgage rates and pent-up demand for homes are driving sales of existing homes, which reached their highest level since November 2009.  Lawrence Yun, chief economist for…
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How To Throw A Memorial Day Weekend Party To Remember

Holidays , ,
Memorial Day weekend is widely regarded as the beginning of summer and many people kick off their summer plans on the weekend coming up. We take this time to remember the brave men and women who have given their lives to protect and defend our liberty and freedom. But even while giving thanks for their sacrifice, we also celebrate the beginning of our summer with fun and (hopefully) sun! As many people are more budget-conscious these days, holiday travel out of town may not be the best option for everyone. There are so many ways to enjoy the first long…
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Fed Meeting Minutes Expose Rising Interest Rate Risk

Federal Reserve , ,
Minutes of the April/May Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) recently released may have a significant impact on mortgage rates going forward.  One significant development from the meeting suggests that the present quantitative easing (QE)  program may be modified in the near future.  The current QE program involves the Fed purchasing $85 billion per month in mortgage backed securities (MBS) and Treasury bonds. The Fed's goal with QE is keeping long-term interest rates, including mortgage rates, low. Considerations mentioned in favor of slowing the current QE program include concerns over “buoyant” financial markets as evidence of a developing economic “bubble”. FOMC…
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Simple Tips To Help Your Flowerbeds Flourish This Spring

Around The Home , ,
Flowerbeds can be a very attractive addition to any home -- if you have the time to set up and maintain them. Flowerbeds don't necessarily require a profusion of costly flowers that need to be fertilized, mulched, covered during severe weather, and possibly re-planted on a yearly basis. So put on your green thumb and brave the outdoors this spring. With the tips below, you'll keep your flowerbeds filled and your house looking cheery without a huge money or time commitment. Weed Eradication Before you even start picking out roses and tulips, take care of the weeds. Gardens get weeds…
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Avoid These Common Mistakes When Pricing Your Home To Sell

Home Selling Tips , ,
It can be very difficult to determine what your property is worth in the current marketplace, because you are biased by what the property is worth to you. These emotions can get in the way of impartially evaluating a property and often cause sellers to overprice their home. When pricing your property, you need to be objective and reasonable so you can come up with a selling price that will capture the interest of buyers. Here are a few examples of common mistakes people make when pricing their house for sale. Reading Too Much Into Online Comparable Properties Avoid relying…
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What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – May 20, 2013

Mortgage Rates , ,
Last week was jam-packed with economic news; here are some highlights with emphasis on housing and mortgage related news: Monday: Retail sales for April increased to -0.1 percent from the March reading of -0.5 percent and also surpassed Wall Street's downward forecast of -0.6 percent. Retail sales are important to economic recovery as sales of goods and services represent approximately 70 percent of the U.S. economy. Tuesday: The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) released its Small Business Optimism Index for April with encouraging results. April's index rose by 2.6 points to 92.1. A reading of 90.7 indicates economic recovery. This…
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Benefits Of Owning A Green Home You May Not Have Considered

Around The Home , ,
Going green is not just a new trend; it is a way of life that benefits not only the environment, but also your health — and your pocketbook. Green living cuts down on carbon emissions and creates a healthier environment both inside and outside of a home. While green structures sometimes cost more initially, the money (and environment) saved in the long run is well worth the investment. Health Benefits Owning a green home has significant health benefits. Many conventional buildings are not properly ventilated and indoor air quality is often more polluted than the air outside. Poor air quality…
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