FHA Mortgages

FHA Mortgages FHA mortgages can be good option for first-time homebuyers By Ellen Chang, May 1, 2015. First-time homebuyers often consider Federal Housing Administration loans. They do not require a large down payment or high FICO scores unlike traditional 30-year fixed mortgages. Given that young households tend not to have the savings for a substantial … Continued

5 Mistakes That Delay Mortgage Approvals

5 Mistakes That Delay Mortgage Approvals (and How to Avoid Them) By Zillow Team. April 8, 2015. One of the hardest parts of getting a mortgage is interpreting advice from all the parties involved. The mortgage lender, real estate agent, insurer, attorney or escrow officer, tax adviser, financial adviser, plus your family, friends and colleagues. Since … Continued

Spring Plants You Can’t Kill

Spring Plants You Can’t Kill 6 Spring Plants You Can’t Kill (Unless You Really, Really Try). Spring Plants You Can’t Kill. from Jessica Harlan, March 17, 2015. Want a garden you just can’t kill? There’s no such thing as a no-maintenance garden, says Julie Moir Messervy. Messervy is a landscape designer. Photo: Bill Sumner, from … Continued

Pittsburgh Begins Hunt

Pittsburgh Begins Hunt Pittsburgh Begins Hunt for Properties with Historic Potential By Diana Nelson Jones / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, November 3, 2014. Michael Henninger/Post-Gazette Lowrie Street in Troy Hill, the neighborhood where the city has begun an inventory of properties, focusing on architectural and historic merit. Consultants for the city’s planning department spent much of the … Continued

Buying A Mattress

Buying A Mattress When buying a mattress, check the return policy Buying A Mattress, By Ed Perratore February 10, 2015. At Consumer Reports, we have traditionally advised you to try a mattress you’re considering buying. Test it by lying on it for at least 10 minutes on each side, your back and your stomach if … Continued

Zoning Ordinance Definitions

Zoning Ordinance Definitions Zoning Ordinances Law & Legal Definitions Zoning ordinances are local or municipal laws that establishing building codes and land usage regulations for properties in a specified area. Most cities and towns are composed of regions that are zoned for residential, commercial, or industrial development, and often these zones are subdivided by additional … Continued

Pittsburgh’s apartment buildings attract considerable national interest

Pittsburgh’s apartment buildings attract considerable national interest Pittsburgh’s apartment buildings attract considerable national interest, By Sam Spatter, Thursday, Sept. 27, 2012. Pittsburgh’s tight apartment market — with the lowest vacancy rate in the nation — is one reason owners of Downtown apartment buildings are putting their properties up for sale in hopes of getting top … Continued

Is your retirement nest egg big enough?

Is your retirement nest egg is big enough? This calculation might prompt you to take some winnings off the table—before it’s too late. By William J. Bernstein, January 20, 2015. Is your retirement nest egg is big enough? During past bull markets, many Americans nearing retirement fleetingly acquired a nest egg for later life. As … Continued

Home Insurance Decisions

Home Insurance Decisions 5 Home Insurance Decisions It’s Risky to Make on Your Own Home Insurance Decisions. By HomeInsurance.com. January 12, 2015. Who doesn’t feel pride in clearing a clog, changing an element in an oven or replacing a deadbolt without calling a handyman? There’s no question that a successful do-it-yourself project can save you time … Continued

How Long Should Your Household Purchases Last?

How Long Should Your Household Purchases Last? Here’s a guide to the life expectancy of big-ticket purchases, from the roof down to the refrigerator. Most kitchen appliances, such as refrigerators, dishwashers and gas range ovens, should be replaced every 10 to 15 years. As consumers, we’ve all probably held some unexpected funerals for our purchases. … Continued

Sky Bridge House

Sky Bridge House Blurs Boundaries Between Indoors & Out A series of bridges, both open-air and glass-enclosed, unite two halves of a striking ultramodern concrete home in Singapore. The 66MRN House by local firm ONG&ONG divides the social areas of the home from the private spaces and ‘service functions’ like the kitchen. These spaces are … Continued

14 winter home improvements

14 winter home improvements   The polar vortex is setting records for low temperatures and threatening to send utility bills skyrocketing. You can take steps to make your home more energy efficient. The Department of Energy has a do-it-yourself energy audit on its website. You can also call a contractor for an audit. Homeowners should … Continued

How to Trace a House Genealogy

How to Trace a House Genealogy Many people search for historical information about homes and property. Who originally owned the land? How old is the house? Who built it? Who has lived in it? To find the answers to these questions, many different types of records can be examined. There is no single place to … Continued

How to cut your biggest expense

How to cut your biggest expense You’re going to spend a lot on housing in retirement. Here’s how to cut your biggest expense as you age. The single biggest expense you face in retirement is housing. It accounts for more than 40% of spending for people 65 and older, according to the Employee Benefit Research … Continued

So, You Want to… Insulate the Attic

So, You Want to… Insulate the Attic So, You Want to… Insulate the Attic comes from Bobvila.com, By Steven Fox November 6, 2014. Are your heating and cooling costs are going through the roof? You might be right! An attic with poor insulation can cost you big bucks. The Department of Energy estimates attic insulation … Continued

The Income Property: Your Retirement Plan

The Income Property: Your Retirement Plan “Income property can be an important bridge to retirement for those without enough to retire in the traditional sense,” says J. Camarda. Camarda is a real estate investor, Certified Financial Planner, and Chief Investment Officer of Jacksonville-based Camarda Wealth Advisors. Because real estate is such an inefficient market, it’s … Continued

How to remodel your kitchen for thousands less

How to remodel your kitchen for thousands less By Teresa Mears June 17, 2014. Shopping around for materials and labor is key to modernizing your kitchen on the cheap. We always hear that remodeling a kitchen is one of the most expensive home improvements. And it can be. The Remodeling 2014 Cost vs. Value Report listed the … Continued

10 Refrigerator Brands That Won’t Let You Down

10 Refrigerator Brands That Won’t Let You Down By Dan DiClerico. Consumer Reports’ refrigerator Ratings can help lead you to the model that’s best suited to your space and styling needs, with precise temperature controls, ample storage, and the right mix of features. Yet even at 275 models (and counting), our Ratings may not include … Continued

Writing off a catastrophic loss or theft

Writing off a catastrophic loss or theft Writing off a catastrophic loss or theft By Tobie Stanger April 7, 2014. When a natural disaster or theft has robbed you of your personal property, the last thing you’re likely to think about is taxes. Writing off a catastrophic loss or theft can seem like a daunting … Continued

How to Renovate a House

How to Renovate a House Organize The Process and Save Your Sanity By Lee Wallender Home Renovations Expert. The process of renovation can be mind-bending. Here is one suggested whole house renovation timeline. 1. Design and Planning. Whether it’s a sketch or full-blown architectural plans, some type of planning and design always comes first. Ensure … Continued

15 Very Affordable Metros

15 Very Affordable Metros, where less than 15% of income buys a house Pittsburgh ranked on the list of 15 Very Affordable Metros from Yahoo! Homes. The financial rule of thumb is well known by now: No more than 36 percent of your income should go toward paying debts. Of that, no more than 28 … Continued

10 Keys to Home Staging on a Budget

10 Keys to Home Staging on a Budget You’ve decided to sell your home and you want to get top dollar for it. Let’s explore 10 Keys to Home Staging on a Budget. The good news is there are many things you can do to spruce up the look of your home without shelling out … Continued

Saving on remodeling costs with deconstruction

Saving on remodeling costs with deconstruction By Donna Boyle Schwartz. Renovations, regardless of whether they are large or small, can be costly endeavors. You may, however, be able to recoup some money by considering the benefits of “deconstruction”. Donate your used building materials. Or stretch your remodeling dollars by shopping “salvage” or buying someone else’s … Continued

Divorce: What Happens to the Marital Home?

Divorce: What Happens to the Marital Home? By avvo. Divorce: What Happens to the Marital Home? Dividing the marital home in a divorce is one of the most difficult aspects of property distribution. The house is often the most valuable asset owned by the parties. It is the one that often has the most sentimental meaning … Continued

How To Kill Mold

How To Kill Mold By Bob Vila June 13, 2014 5:43 AM For those who live in a poorly ventilated home—mold can be a cause for concern. It’s unhealthy, regardless of whether or not you are allergy-prone. It’s important to act fast when you encounter mold. No matter its location! It may be found on … Continued

The appeal of bamboo flooring

The appeal of bamboo flooring Try the latest type of flooring in your next reno. Discover The appeal of bamboo flooring. Floors are an essential and important element in an interior design scheme. Small wonder, then, that the eye-catching patterns of bamboo flooring have been attracting attention. It is made from the bamboo plant—a grass. … Continued

How to Fight High Property Taxes

How to Fight High Property Taxes Here’s How to Fight High Property Taxes. Death and taxes. Benjamin Franklin espoused their certainty. But it’s doubtful even he knew how difficult it would be to avoid the latter. Especially in the case of property taxes. No matter where you live in the United States, if you own … Continued

Home improvements that really pay off

Home improvements that really pay off Despite what you see on TV and what the conventional wisdom says, most of the Home improvements that really pay off are unglamorous. According to Remodeling Magazine’2014 Cost vs. Value Report, you’ll recoup the greatest percentage of your investment on projects such as replacing the front door with a … Continued

7 Things Not to Do When Flipping Houses

7 Things Not to Do When Flipping Houses By ABC News Nightline. Mold, wood rot, warped floors, a dated bathroom — these problems might seem a nightmare to the average home buyer. But to a seasoned flipper, a house full of flaws could mean profits. With the housing market improving after the 2008 crash, house … Continued

Get the look of a designer kitchen for less

Get the look of a designer kitchen for less Copy high-end kitchen trends without spending a fortune Get the look of a designer kitchen for less was published: April 15, 2014 by Consumer Reports. Bright colors, sleek shelving and chic finishes—are easy to replicate on a small budget. A spot of new paint here, new … Continued

Dangers of Giving Your Home to Your Children

Dangers of Giving Your Home to Your Children From Higher Taxes to Loss of Security, Risks Abound. It may seem like a great idea. Parents, because they want to help their kids out or reduce the taxable value of their estate, decide to transfer ownership of their home to their kids. It may seem like … Continued

The 12 Best Apps for Remodelers

The 12 Best Apps for Remodelers Expand your smart phone or tablet’s job description with apps that turn it into a tool kit, remodeling guide, and all-around design assistant. Here are a dozen apps we’ve found extremely useful:     Design Tools   iHandy Carpenter App/Remodelista Above: No need to lug measuring tools: the iHandy … Continued

When home improvements offer the most bang for your buck

When home improvements offer the most bang for your buck Cleaning up on spring home improvement projects requires more effort than many homeowners anticipate. Here is information when home improvements offer the most bang for your buck. Remodeling tends to pick up as the weather improves, and this year is no exception. During the second … Continued

Stained-glass and the ‘Pittsburgh potty’

Stained-glass and the ‘Pittsburgh potty’ Unique features of old houses in the ’Burgh FOR SALE: Charming three-bedroom home. Decorative fireplace, stained glass windows, garage, one bathroom, $198,000. ’Tis the season for room draw, which means many students are thinking about dorms and university apartments. But what about living in a house off campus? While this … Continued

35 Tips for Restoring Old Houses

35 Tips for Restoring Old Houses Explore 35 Tips for Restoring Old Houses from the Old House Journal website. From radiators to roofing, these specialists offer up a wealth of advice that can help fine-tune the care and repair of your old house. By OHJ Editorial Staff. Masonry. by Jacob Arndt, Preservation Consultant, Architectural Stone … Continued

Pittsburgh among healthiest housing markets

Renowned for it’s cultural environment, business growth and high standard of living, Pittsburgh again tops the charts for the country’s housing markets. Pittsburgh among healthiest housing markets On a list populated mostly by West Coast cities, Pittsburgh ranked among the top 10 healthiest housing markets for October, according to Zillow. The Zillow Market Health Index, … Continued

5 dependable dishwashers for $400 or less

5 dependable dishwashers for $400 or less 5 dependable dishwashers for $400 or less – For some of us, the extra benefits of paying the average $1,200 price for one of the dishwashers recommended by Consumer Reports aren’t worth the extra money. What you get by paying more—lots of flexibility, quiet running, a stainless tub, … Continued

Property Manager Interviewing Tips

Property Manager Interviewing Tips by Joshua Dorkin on July 13, 2007 Here are a few Property Manager Interviewing Tips: Be sure to be as detailed as possible when conducting your interviews. Call local investors and realtors and ask them for manager referrals. Interview as many local companies / managers as possible. Visit the manager’s office … Continued

Plan ahead for a busy remodeling season

Plan ahead for a busy remodeling season Contractors in demand as renovation projects ramp up Published: January 16, 2014 by Consumer Reports. If you’ve been thinking about a home renovation, there’s no time like the present to plan ahead for a busy remodeling season. The home remodeling market could see double-digit year-over-year growth in 2014, … Continued

8 Tips for Decorating a Rental

8 Tips for Decorating a Rental Decorating a rental can be tricky. It’s not necessarily a long-term home, and often landlords put limitations on what residents can or can’t do. But just because you can’t paint or rip out the stained kitchen linoleum, doesn’t mean there aren’t ways to make a rental feel like your … Continued

5 Ticking Time Bombs Every Homeowner Should Know About

5 Ticking Time Bombs Every Homeowner Should Know About There are some maintenance and repair issues that homeowners just hate to deal with—either because they take time, or cost money, or just don’t seem, well, urgent. But some of these problems can become ticking time bombs, poised to explode if they’re not defused early, when … Continued

Pittsburgh Region’s Home Values Rise

The Pittsburgh Business Times published this article seeing Pittsburgh Region’s Home Values Rise on December 23, 2013. Pittsburgh region’s home values up 6 percent in 2013 Home values in the Pittsburgh region rose 5.9 percent in 2013 according to a survey by residential real estate website Zillow. The November Zillow Home Value Index was $118,600 for … Continued

The Best Time To Sell A House Is…

When is the best time of year to sell a house?  The following article from The Huffington Post describes five reasons of why Spring is the busiest season in Real Estate. The Best Time To Sell A House Is… The sun is shining, the days are longer and people are wearing jean shorts and ordering … Continued

5 Easy Tips for Being a Successful Landlord

Thinking of investing in an apartment building?  Need answers on how to be a more successful landlord with less headaches?  Check out these tips! 5 Easy Tips for Being a Successful Landlord This may come off sounding a little harsh, but I believe the majority of landlords out there are terrible. Courtesy of The Huffington … Continued

The Top 10 Mistakes 20-Somethings Make Regarding Real Estate

Need a push to make the leap into buying your first piece of Real Estate?  Here are 10 good reasons why starting early can help you in the short-term and in the long run. The Top 10 Mistakes 20-Somethings Make Regarding Real Estate You probably think I’m just a bit crazy for including the phrase … Continued

How To Prepare Your House For Sale

Need help on how to prepare your house for sale? This step-by-step article will take the guess work out of the process. How To Prepare Your House For Sale It’s careful planning and knowing how to professionally spruce up your home that will send home buyers scurrying for their checkbooks. Here’s How To Prepare Your … Continued

Rehabbed Property in Wexford

Located in a northern suburb of Pittsburgh, Wexford is the location of this remarkable rehab.  The photos show before and after rehab of a diamond in the rough.     Pittsburgh Property Guy can help you SELL, BUY, and RENT properties in the Pittsburgh Real Estate Market.  We provide honest solutions (WE BUY HOUSES) for sellers who … Continued