Selling Your Home Yourself Is Now Simpler -- but Still Tricky

Alamy By Jeff Brown NEW YORK -- Home prices are up and there aren't enough homes on the market to meet buyer demand. It sounds like perfect conditions for the seller who wants to go it alone, saving the hefty real estate agent's commission. The mechanics of the FSBO -- for sale by owner -- have become relatively... Continue Reading »

Why It's True: You Should Own, Not Rent

By Jeff Brown The "American Dream" means owning a home rather than renting. And despite the huge losses millions of homeowners suffered in the past decade, the dream is still alive and well. But what, exactly, do people value the most in owning over renting? A study by Fannie Mae shows that most renters aspire to own... Continue Reading »

5 Most Overvalued Housing Markets in America

By Jerry Kronenberg Home prices are rebounding so much in some U.S. cities that property values have actually risen beyond what local economic fundamentals justify, market watcher says. "These are [generally] markets that have seen big price increases in the past year," Trulia Senior Economist Jed Kolko... Continue Reading »

5 Reasons Housing Will Continue to Improve

By Brian O'Connell Wall Street was abuzz over Home Depot on Monday as the stock climbed to a 52-week high on a strong earnings report stemming from a burgeoning housing market. "In the first quarter, we saw less favorable weather compared to last year, but we continue to see benefit from a recovering housing market that... Continue Reading »

Why Your Home Needs Central Air and a Walk-In Closet

By Jeff Brown When you find your dream home, things just click. The closets may be a bit too small, the A/C may come from window units instead of a central system, and maybe there's no full-time guest room. ... But the place just has that magic. Still, it pays to think about those shortcomings, which could make it harder... Continue Reading »

Is Now a Good Time to Get a Reverse Mortgage?

By Jeff Brown Is this a good time to get a reverse mortgage? Yes -- even if you don't need one. That's the recommendation from Jack M. Guttentag, an emeritus finance professor at The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. On his website, The Mortgage Professor, he says homeowners old enough to have a reverse... Continue Reading »

You Can Buy a Home Even When It's Not for Sale

By Marilen Cawad Chris Lichon found her "dream" starter home as she was driving around Rutherford County, Tenn., one fine spring day. The house was on about an acre of ground, on a dead-end street, with a big pasture beside it that she could rent for her horse. It was perfect, she thought, except for one small detail.... Continue Reading »

For Best St. Patrick's Day, Live in These 5 Irish-American Cities

By Jerry Kronenberg If you love a good tin-whistle concert, real Irish butter or the Celtic game of hurling, consider moving to a U.S. city with a large Irish-American population. "Irish culture is very welcoming of everybody, whether you're Irish or not," says Sinead McLaughlin of the Irish Cultural Centre of New... Continue Reading »

3 Reasons Your Home's Value Is Rising

By Brian O'Connell The housing market is growing so robust that even "hard-hit" regions are getting up off the mat and back in the fight. In California, pending home sales are at a four-year high, according to the California Association of Realtors. That's increasing homebuyer competition and leading to multiple offers... Continue Reading »

How to Choose an Investment Property That Earns You the Most

By Jeff Brown What type of investment property should you buy -- a condo or single-family home? Until recently, that was a trick question, as real estate was too risky and illiquid for most investors. But growing evidence of a rebound in the housing market reduces the risk your investment property would lose value.... Continue Reading »

5 Warm-Weather Cities With the Hottest Housing Markets

By Jerry Kronenberg Sick of the cold and snow that's been slamming cities from Sacramento, Calif., to Portland, Maine, recently? Maybe it's time to consider moving to a warmer locale. "Whether they're from Chicago, Toronto, New York or Boston, lots of people move to South Florida for our warmth," says Andrew Barbar, a... Continue Reading »

5 Towns Named After Presidents -- And More Affordable Than Washington, D.C.

By Jerry Kronenberg You know that Washington, D.C., is named for America's first president, but did you know that Harrison City, Pa., (population 134) honors ninth president William Henry Harrison? Or that Pierceton, Ind., (population 1,015) memorializes 14th president Franklin Pierce? "You can find towns named after... Continue Reading »

As Spring Home Buying Season Approaches, Here's How to Prepare

By Jeff Brown As we mentioned the other day, conditions are looking up for homeowners who want to sell. That implies, of course, that things must be good for buyers, too. In fact, a survey from Fannie Mae indicates that more and more potential buyers are getting ready to move off the sidelines. As people see reports of... Continue Reading »

5 Worst Cities to Buy Foreclosures in 2013

By Jerry Kronenberg The U.S. foreclosure crisis looks like it's finally winding down -- great news for homeowners, but decidedly less positive for house hunters and real estate investors. "From the perspective of buyers, [some] markets might not be as attractive anymore," says Daren Blomquist of market watcher... Continue Reading »

Home Prices Post Biggest Gain in 6 Years

By Shanthi Bhaharatwaj Home prices rose 8.3 percent in December from a year earlier, the biggest gain since May 2006, according to CoreLogic. All but four states -- Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Illinois and Delaware -- posted increases. Prices rose 0.4 percent in December from November, the 10th consecutive monthly... Continue Reading »

Housing Market 2013 for Homebuyers: It's a Balancing Act

By Brian O'Connell Talk to any Realtor these days and you'll likely get an earful about "limited inventories." That's a big departure from the past few years, when home sellers were eager, for a variety of reasons, to pound those "for sale" signs into their front lawns. While existing home sales eased in December, the... Continue Reading »

What Florida Shows Us About the Real Estate Market

By Jeff Brown Sick of the cold? Maybe you should buy a place in Florida, where temperatures are warm and the housing market is heating up. The cold snap gripping much of the country is surely prodding many to dream of owning a second home someplace warm, or of moving there for good. Data show that Florida's housing... Continue Reading »

6 Real Estate Apps for Finding a New Home

By Jerry Kronenberg That cool new smartphone you got this holiday season can help you find a cool new place to live if you're planning on going house-hunting in 2013. That's because real estate firms, listing services, mortgage companies and more have thousands of free smartphone apps available to help you find your... Continue Reading »

Home Appraisals Lower Than Prices? What to Do

By Jeff Brown Like many young things, the housing recovery is suffering some growing pains, as appraisals lag rising prices and make it difficult for borrowers to get loans. The problem, mortgage-data firm HSH Associates says, starts with the conservative appraisal standards implemented during the financial crisis.... Continue Reading »

America's 5 Least Affordable Housing Markets

America's least affordable housing markets all cost big bucks because lots of people want to live there, but oceans or other natural barriers leave little available real estate for additional homes. "The fundamental [unaffordability] of these markets hasn't changed despite the fact that home prices are down and we're... Continue Reading »

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