News Feeds (RSS) https://www.nzherald.co.nz/property/news/article.cfm?c_id=8&objectid=12259393&ref=rss newsfeeds@nzherald.co.nz Auctions drive landmark sales Bayleys says its commercial and industrial listings magazine Total Property has helped drive some of the country's landmark real estate sales.As the publication turns 20, True Commercial looks back at some of those defining sales.One... Sat, 17 Aug 2019 13:04:23 +1200 2019-08-17 13:04 +12:00 2019-08-17 13:04 +12:00 https://www.nzherald.co.nz/property/news/article.cfm?c_id=8&objectid=12259303&ref=rss newsfeeds@nzherald.co.nz Syndication uptake signals ongoing investor demand The rapid uptake of Silverfin Capital's largest-ever property syndication scheme shows there is still plenty of investor demand for blueprints with good projected returns, says the company's CEO. The Inghams portfolio scheme, marketed... Sat, 17 Aug 2019 05:00:00 +1200 2019-08-17 05:00 +12:00 2019-08-17 05:00 +12:00 https://www.nzherald.co.nz/property/news/article.cfm?c_id=8&objectid=12259300&ref=rss newsfeeds@nzherald.co.nz Wairau Valley units with a blank canvas for upside Four warehouse units on a freehold site in the Wairau Valley industrial precinct are for sale as a tenanted investment with the opportunity for immediate rental upside.The 2024sq m property, at 78 Diana Dr, on Auckland's North Shore,... Sat, 17 Aug 2019 05:00:00 +1200 2019-08-17 05:00 +12:00 2019-08-17 05:00 +12:00 https://www.nzherald.co.nz/property/news/article.cfm?c_id=8&objectid=12259297&ref=rss newsfeeds@nzherald.co.nz Retail and industrial property portfolio A commercial and industrial property portfolio in Masterton - featuring a block of high street shops, a vehicle testing station, and an industrial hub - is on the market for sale.The three properties are based at various locations... Sat, 17 Aug 2019 05:00:00 +1200 2019-08-17 05:00 +12:00 2019-08-17 05:00 +12:00 https://www.nzherald.co.nz/property/news/article.cfm?c_id=8&objectid=12259293&ref=rss newsfeeds@nzherald.co.nz Investors set to dive into scuba centre Land and buildings housing an underwater diving centre and a laundromat in Whitianga are on the market for sale.The premises, at 10-12 Campbell St, in Whitianga's central business district, sits at the intersection with Owen St... Sat, 17 Aug 2019 05:00:00 +1200 2019-08-17 05:00 +12:00 2019-08-17 05:00 +12:00 https://www.nzherald.co.nz/property/news/article.cfm?c_id=8&objectid=12259288&ref=rss newsfeeds@nzherald.co.nz Packhouse and cool store for sale The land, buildings, and business sustaining one of the biggest privately-owned horticultural packing and distribution centres in the Western Bay of Plenty are on the market for sale.The complex, at Trig Rd, Waihi, features more... Sat, 17 Aug 2019 05:00:00 +1200 2019-08-17 05:00 +12:00 2019-08-17 05:00 +12:00 https://www.nzherald.co.nz/property/news/article.cfm?c_id=8&objectid=12259286&ref=rss newsfeeds@nzherald.co.nz Soon to be vacant medical centre for sale Land and buildings once housing a full-service medical centre in Paeroa are on the market for sale or lease.The purpose-built premises, at 15 Princes St, had six tenants all of which have either relocated to new premises in Paeroa,... Sat, 17 Aug 2019 05:00:00 +1200 2019-08-17 05:00 +12:00 2019-08-17 05:00 +12:00 https://www.nzherald.co.nz/property/news/article.cfm?c_id=8&objectid=12259281&ref=rss newsfeeds@nzherald.co.nz 12-year sale and leaseback in Penrose Kiwi-owned company Phoenix Metal Recyclers is selling its large Penrose industrial site on a new 12-year lease as the owners look to expand the business to meet growing demand.The sale and leaseback presents an opportunity to invest... Sat, 17 Aug 2019 05:00:00 +1200 2019-08-17 05:00 +12:00 2019-08-17 05:00 +12:00 https://www.nzherald.co.nz/property/news/article.cfm?c_id=8&objectid=12259276&ref=rss newsfeeds@nzherald.co.nz Global retailers buy Auckland CBD as a hot spot Auckland CBD's retail scene will see a raft of new international retailers set up shop over the next few years as new property and infrastructure developments unlock the central city's retailing opportunities.Chris Dibble, Research... Sat, 17 Aug 2019 05:00:00 +1200 2019-08-17 05:00 +12:00 2019-08-17 05:00 +12:00 https://www.nzherald.co.nz/property/news/article.cfm?c_id=8&objectid=12259271&ref=rss newsfeeds@nzherald.co.nz Burger bar franchise comes with tasty treats A burger bar franchise in Mission Bay, Auckland, is on the market for $580,000. NOA Chargrill + Burger has a strong lease in place, weekly sales of over $30,000, and the rent is attractive, says Nick Giles of LINK hospitality division.NOA... Sat, 17 Aug 2019 05:00:00 +1200 2019-08-17 05:00 +12:00 2019-08-17 05:00 +12:00 https://www.nzherald.co.nz/property/news/article.cfm?c_id=8&objectid=12259267&ref=rss newsfeeds@nzherald.co.nz Right chemistry for owner occupiers The land and purpose-built complex housing the New Zealand offices of a global company is on the market for the first time since it was built in 1985.The two-storey commercial property, at 1-3 Argus Pl, Hillcrest, is the New Zealand... Sat, 17 Aug 2019 05:00:00 +1200 2019-08-17 05:00 +12:00 2019-08-17 05:00 +12:00 https://www.nzherald.co.nz/property/news/article.cfm?c_id=8&objectid=12258996&ref=rss newsfeeds@nzherald.co.nz Precinct Properties boosts underlying profit, tweaks dividend policy Precinct Properties made a $189.9 million net after-tax net profit, down on last year's $254.9m, due mainly to less spectacular rises in the value of its properties.Underlying profit, adjusted for non-cash items, was up 3.7 per... Fri, 16 Aug 2019 11:08:02 +1200 2019-08-16 11:08 +12:00 2019-08-16 11:08 +12:00 https://www.nzherald.co.nz/property/news/article.cfm?c_id=8&objectid=12258722&ref=rss newsfeeds@nzherald.co.nz Mad Butcher owners' Orakei, Waiheke Island homes for sale Business couple Michael Morton and Julie Leitch, of The Mad Butcher, are selling their Orakei home after undertaking extensive renovations, and their large rural Waiheke Island place.The two properties are collectively valued at... Thu, 15 Aug 2019 10:10:32 +1200 2019-08-15 10:10 +12:00 2019-08-15 10:10 +12:00 https://www.nzherald.co.nz/property/news/article.cfm?c_id=8&objectid=12258666&ref=rss newsfeeds@nzherald.co.nz Australia's housing market is suddenly heating up again After a two-year slide, Australian house prices look to have bottomed out, sending buyers flocking back to the market.Case in point: An auction for a four-bedroom house in the Sydney suburb of Ryde on Saturday attracted about 100... Thu, 15 Aug 2019 08:35:02 +1200 2019-08-15 08:35 +12:00 2019-08-15 08:35 +12:00 https://www.nzherald.co.nz/property/news/article.cfm?c_id=8&objectid=12258564&ref=rss newsfeeds@nzherald.co.nz Nappies, rubbish and drug use: Rental abandoned in 'atrocious' state A shocking video has emerged of an abandoned Auckland rental property littered with junk, broken furniture and drug paraphernalia.The trashed property stinks of cigarettes, has broken fences and a nappy dumped in the garden, highlighting... Wed, 14 Aug 2019 19:24:49 +1200 2019-08-14 19:24 +12:00 2019-08-14 19:24 +12:00 https://www.nzherald.co.nz/property/news/article.cfm?c_id=8&objectid=12258299&ref=rss newsfeeds@nzherald.co.nz SkyCity profit down 14 per cent, convention centre progress 'slow' Casino, restaurant and hotel business Sky City Entertainment has posted a 14.7 per cent drop in net profit from $169.5 million last year to $144.6m this year.Normalised profit rose 1.6 per cent to $173m, according to the result... Wed, 14 Aug 2019 07:12:08 +1200 2019-08-14 07:12 +12:00 2019-08-14 07:12 +12:00 https://www.nzherald.co.nz/property/news/article.cfm?c_id=8&objectid=12258043&ref=rss newsfeeds@nzherald.co.nz Landlords fined for seizing tenant's property for years over unpaid rent Landlords who seized and held their tenant's belongings for years because she was behind in the rent have been stung with $6000 in fines.Masterton couple Dr Robert Maunsell and Susan Munro rented a unit on their property to tenant... Tue, 13 Aug 2019 10:12:30 +1200 2019-08-13 10:12 +12:00 2019-08-13 10:12 +12:00 https://www.nzherald.co.nz/property/news/article.cfm?c_id=8&objectid=12258005&ref=rss newsfeeds@nzherald.co.nz Summerset half-year net profit slips 4% as valuation gains ease, expenses rise Summerset Group reported a 4 per cent drop in net profit to $92.6m due mainly to less spectacular property revaluations, rising expenses and increasing finance costs.Total revenue from the retirement business rose 13 per cent from... Tue, 13 Aug 2019 09:03:01 +1200 2019-08-13 09:03 +12:00 2019-08-13 09:03 +12:00 https://www.nzherald.co.nz/property/news/article.cfm?c_id=8&objectid=12257989&ref=rss newsfeeds@nzherald.co.nz Mid-winter hits house prices: Auckland down 2.4%, NZ down 1.7% Mid-winter is hitting the housing market with national and Auckland prices down, according to the latest Real Estate Institute data for July.Auckland house prices hit a six-month low and fell by 2.4 per cent from June. National... Tue, 13 Aug 2019 09:00:00 +1200 2019-08-13 09:00 +12:00 2019-08-13 09:00 +12:00 https://www.nzherald.co.nz/property/news/article.cfm?c_id=8&objectid=12257913&ref=rss newsfeeds@nzherald.co.nz 'We are already home': Ihum&#257;tao group responds to Simon Bridges' comments Those protesting against a housing development at Ihum&#257;tao have provided a blunt response to National Party leader Simon Bridges: "We are already home."Bridges stoked the ire of many after criticising Prime Minister Jacinda... Mon, 12 Aug 2019 18:10:42 +1200 2019-08-12 18:10 +12:00 2019-08-12 18:10 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=227286 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/0A3xPvOkchs/ Tips & Advice home buying Home selling real estate agents Don't Believe These 5 Myths About Real Estate Agents Do you need one? Do they pocket the whole commission? Let's set the facts straight. Thu, 01 Aug 2019 13:09:24 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/5-myths-about-real-estate-agents-227286/#comments Brendon DeSimone <p>Buyers and sellers often enter the market with misconceptions about real estate agents - how they work, how the process works and what the agency relationship is all about.</p> <p>It&#8217;s helpful to point out, without getting too far into the weeds, that in any one real estate transaction, there are most likely two agents: one for the buyer and one for the seller.</p> <p>Here are five myths (and five truths) about working with both buyer's and seller's agents.</p> <h2>1. Agents get a 6% commission, no matter what</h2> <p>Most people assume that their agent is pocketing the entire <a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/how-much-commission-to-pay-224764/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">commission</a>. That would be nice, but it&#8217;s just not accurate.</p> <h3>Truth</h3> <p>First, it's helpful to know that the seller pays the commission, and they split it four ways: between the two brokerages and the two agents.</p> <p>Finally, the brokerage commission isn't fixed or set in stone, and sellers can sometimes negotiate it.</p> <h2>2. Once you start with an agent, you're stuck with them</h2> <p>If you're a seller, you sign a contract with the real estate agent and their brokerage. That contract includes a term - typically six months to a year. Once you sign the agreement, you could, in fact, be stuck with their agent through the term. But that&#8217;s not always the case.</p> <h3>Truth</h3> <p>If things aren't working out, it's possible to ask the agent or the brokerage manager to <a href="https://www.zillow.com/sellers-guide/changing-real-estate-agents-seller/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">release you from the agreement early</a>.</p> <p>Buyers are rarely under a contract. In fact, buyer's agents work for free until their clients find a home. It can be as quick as a month, or it can take up to a year or more. And sometimes a buyer never purchases a house, and the agent doesn't get paid.</p> <p>Before jumping into an agent's car and asking them to play tour guide, consider a sit-down consultation or a call, and read their online reviews to see if they're the right fit.</p> <p>Otherwise, start slow, and if you don't feel comfortable, let them know early on - it's more difficult to break up with your agent if too much time passes.</p> <h2>3. It&#8217;s OK for buyers to use the home's selling agent</h2> <p>Today's buyers get most things on demand, from food to a ride to the airport. When it comes to real estate, buyers now assume they need only their smartphone to purchase a home, since most property listings live online.</p> <h3>Truth</h3> <p>First-time buyers or buyers new to an area don't know what they don't know, and they need an advocate.</p> <p>The listing agent represents the seller's interests and has a fiduciary responsibility to negotiate the best price and terms for the seller. So working directly with the selling agent presents a conflict of interest in favor of the seller.</p> <p>An excellent buyer's agent lives and breathes their local market. They've likely been inside and know the history of dozens of homes nearby. They're connected to the community, and they know the best inspectors, lenders, architects and attorneys.</p> <p>They've facilitated many transactions, which means they know all the <a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/6-problems-home-inspector-may-miss-159039/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">red flags</a> and can tell you when to run away from (or toward) a home.</p> <h2>4. One agent is just as good as the next</h2> <p>Many people think that all agents are created equal.</p> <h3>Truth</h3> <p>A great local agent can make an incredible difference, so never settle. The right agent can save you time and money, keep you out of trouble and protect you.</p> <p>Consider an agent who has lived and worked in the same town for around ten years. They know the streets like the back of their hand. They have deep relationships with the other local agents. They have the inside track on upcoming deals and past transactions that can't be explained by looking at data online.</p> <p>Compare that agent to one who's visiting an area for the first time. Some agents aren't forthright and might be more interested in making a sale. Many others care more about building a long-term relationship with you, because their business is based off referrals.</p> <h2>5. You can't buy a for sale by owner (FSBO) home if you have an agent</h2> <p>In a previous generation, sellers who wouldn't deal with any agents tried to sell their home directly to a buyer to save the commission.</p> <h3>Truth</h3> <p>Smart sellers understand that real estate is complicated and that most buyers have separate representation. And many <a href="https://www.zillow.com/sellers-guide/for-sale-by-owner-vs-real-estate-agent/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">FSBO sellers</a> will offer payment to a buyer's agent as an incentive to bring their buyer clients to the home.</p> <p>If you see a FSBO home on the market, don't be afraid to ask your agent to step in. Most of the time the seller will compensate them, and you can benefit from their knowledge and experience.</p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/sellers-guide/how-do-i-sell-my-house/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">How Do I Sell My House: Getting Started</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/sellers-guide/do-i-need-an-agent-to-sell-my-house/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Do I Need an Agent to Sell My House?<br /> </a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/sellers-guide/how-to-price-home-to-sell/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">How to Price Your Home to Sell</a></li> </ul> <p><em>Note: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinion or position of Zillow.</em></p> <p><em>Originally published June 2018.</em></p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=0A3xPvOkchs:pQrUW3wci7c:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=0A3xPvOkchs:pQrUW3wci7c:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/5-myths-about-real-estate-agents-227286/feed/ 32 https://www.zillow.com/blog/5-myths-about-real-estate-agents-227286/ 2019-08-01 13:09 +00:00 2019-08-02 01:09 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=230728 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/smYxR5Kva6c/ Unique Homes cabins treehouses unique homes This Stylish Treehouse Is Luxury Off-the-Grid Living More castle-like than rustic, this forested glamping retreat took the couple three years to build. Wed, 31 Jul 2019 17:39:09 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/montana-treehouse-230728/#comments Jamie Birdwell-Branson <p id="video">Kati O'Toole and her husband, Darin, wanted to create a giant piece of artwork on their private and heavily wooded seven-acre property in Montana. They ended up with what they refer to as the Montana Treehouse Retreat - a two-story, fully finished treehouse nestled among three living trees.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/i7kv59_qxpg" width="560" height="315" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <p>"Everybody thought we were crazy [at] the beginning, like 'What are you guys doing building a treehouse here?' Our parents thought we were crazy," says Kati.</p> <p>But the hard work and vision paid off, and now visitors from all over the world routinely come to stay at their carefully crafted work of art. The 700-square-foot treehouse features a master suite with a deck that overlooks the forest, a living area with three benches that can double as sleeping quarters, and two bathrooms. Guests can also prepare a meal in the treehouse's downstairs kitchen, complete with a refrigerator, a stove, a sink and a dishwasher.</p> <p>"There&#8217;s even air conditioning in this treehouse, because we wanted to create a very luxury experience here. I have to be honest - the treehouse is nicer inside than the house that I live in, so I like to come back here and just have a little retreat away from it all," says Kati.</p> <p>Every detail of the treehouse was painstakingly thought out, and most of the materials were either sourced locally or repurposed. The trim and the interior feature wood that Darin himself milled, sanded and finished, and the breakfast table nook was made from the base of a tree located right on their property.</p> <p>One of Kati's favorite details of the treehouse, however, is the spiraling exterior staircase, which is wrapped around a large tree shipped in from Darin's grandmother's yard, roots and all.</p> <p>Although Darin handled most of the heavy-duty construction of the structure, Kati's handiwork is all over the interior.</p> <p>"We wanted it to be kind of funky and modern - but still have some Montana accents and still be a little rustic too. So there were many things coming into play, and we wanted people to feel like it was a very cozy home away from home when they came here, and just like a one-of-a-kind Montana experience," she says.</p> <p>A combination of white shiplap and multicolored wood paneling covers the interior walls, giving the home an eclectic yet polished farmhouse look, and expansive windows create an open, airy feeling in the small living spaces. Modern elements that are dotted throughout the house, like the industrial chandelier in the kitchen and the black hexagon and subway tiles in the bathrooms, are more reminiscent of a boutique hotel than a remote treehouse located near Glacier National Park.</p> <p>Close to Kati's heart are the pieces by local artists that don the walls, with some of the pieces coming from guests who created the artwork while staying at the treehouse.</p> <p>"It&#8217;s been really cool to see [how] this place inspires people," she says.</p> <p>But the defining characteristic of this home - and what guests travel miles for - is the unique experience of living out your childhood dreams of sleeping in a treehouse.</p> <p>"It&#8217;s a very unique feeling that most people have never experienced, to be lying in bed and seeing a tree - or you&#8217;re actually moving. And people have told me that they love the experience, and it&#8217;s - yeah, it&#8217;s a treehouse. That&#8217;s the beauty. It&#8217;s a real treehouse," says Kati.</p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/tiny-tropical-treehouse-in-hawaii-225313/">Explore a Tiny Tropical Treehouse in Hawaii</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/nashville-treehouse-227827/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">This Nashville Treehouse Will Drench You in Light</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/whimsical-cabins-227534/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Tour These Whimsical Cabins Made From Recycled Materials</a></li> </ul> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=smYxR5Kva6c:WEoQWXNmIWI:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=smYxR5Kva6c:WEoQWXNmIWI:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/montana-treehouse-230728/feed/ 21 https://www.zillow.com/blog/montana-treehouse-230728/ 2019-07-31 17:39 +00:00 2019-08-01 05:39 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=148354 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/BZQSGKlgSGE/ Tips & Advice curb appeal home remodel home seller tips home staging paint color 5 Myths (and 5 Truths) About Selling Your Home True or false: All real estate advice is good advice. (Hint: It depends.) Wed, 31 Jul 2019 14:15:36 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/5-myths-about-home-selling-148354/#comments Mary Boone <p>Everyone has advice about the real estate market, but not all of that unsolicited information is true. So when it comes time to list your home, you'll need to separate fact from fiction.</p> <p>Below we&#8217;ve identified the top five real estate myths - and debunked them so you can hop on the fast track to selling your property.</p> <h2>1. I need to redo my kitchen and bathroom before selling</h2> <p><b>Truth:</b> While kitchens and bathrooms can increase the value of a home, you won't get a large return on investment if you do a major renovation just before selling.</p> <p>Minor renovations, on the other hand, may help you sell your home for a higher price. New countertops or new appliances may be just the kind of bait you need to reel in a buyer. Check out comparable listings in your neighborhood, and see what work you need to do to compete in the market.</p> <h2>2. My home&#8217;s exterior isn't as important as the interior</h2> <p><b>Truth:</b> Home buyers often make snap judgments based simply on a home's exterior, so <a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/budget-friendly-curb-appeal-194022/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">curb appeal</a> is very important.</p> <p>"A lot of buyers search online or drive by properties before they even enlist my services," says <a href="https://www.zillow.com/profile/BicDeCaro/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Bic DeCaro</a>, a real estate agent at Westgate Realty Group in Falls Church, Virginia. "If the yard is cluttered or the driveway is all broken up, there's a chance they won't ever enter the house - they'll just keep driving."</p> <p>The good news is that it doesn't cost a bundle to improve your home's exterior. Start by cutting the grass, trimming the hedges and clearing away any clutter. Then, for less than $50, you could put up new house numbers, paint the front door, plant some flowers or install a new, more stylish porch light.</p> <h2>3. If my house is clean, I don't need to stage it</h2> <p><b>Truth: </b>Tidy is a good first step, but professional home stagers have raised the bar. Tossing dirty laundry in the closet and sweeping the front steps just aren&#8217;t enough anymore.</p> <p>Stagers make homes appeal to a broad range of tastes. They can skillfully identify ways to highlight your home&#8217;s best features and compensate for its shortcomings. For example, they might recommend removing blinds from a window with a great view or replacing a double bed with a twin to make a bedroom look bigger.</p> <p>Of course, you don't have to hire a professional stager. But if you don't, be ready to <a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/expert-home-staging-tips-219625/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">use some of their tactics</a> to get your home ready for sale - especially if staging is a trend where you live. An unstaged house will pale when compared to others on the market.</p> <h2>4. Granite and stainless steel appliances are old news</h2> <p><b>Truth:</b> The majority of home shoppers still want granite counters and stainless steel appliances. Quartz, marble and concrete counters also have wide appeal.</p> <p>"Most shoppers just want to steer away from anything that looks dated," says <a href="https://www.zillow.com/profile/drubloomfield/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Dru Bloomfield</a>, a real estate agent with Platinum Living Realty in Scottsdale, Arizona. "When you a design a space, you need to decide if you&#8217;re doing it for yourself or for resale potential.&#8221;</p> <p>She suggests that if you're not planning to move anytime soon, decorate how you&#8217;d like. But if you&#8217;re planning to put your home on the market within the next couple of years, stick to elements with mass appeal.</p> <p>"I recently sold a house where the kitchen had been remodeled 12 years ago, and everybody thought it had just been done because the owners had chosen timeless elements: dark maple cabinets, granite counters and stainless steel appliances."</p> <h2>5. Home shoppers can ignore paint colors they don't like</h2> <p><b>Truth:</b> <a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/how-much-will-you-pay-to-move-91663/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Moving is a lot of work</a>, and while many home buyers realize they could take on the task of painting walls, they simply don't want to.</p> <p>That's why one of the most important things you can do to update your home is apply a fresh coat of neutral paint. Neutral colors also help a property stand out in online photographs, which is where most potential buyers will get their first impression of your property.</p> <p>Hiring a professional to paint the interior of a 2,000-square-foot house will cost about $3,000 to $6,000, depending on labor costs in your region. You could buy the paint and do the job yourself for $300 to $500. Either way, if a fresh coat of paint helps your home stand out in a crowded market, it's probably a worthwhile investment.</p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/quiz-renovate-home-or-sell-225199/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Quiz: Should You Renovate Your Home or Sell?</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/listing-photo-dos-and-donts-157730/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">9 Listing Photo Do&#8217;s and Don&#8217;ts</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/real-estate-lingo-and-acronyms-230688/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Say What? Home-Buying Lingo You Should Know</a></li> </ul> <p><em>Originally published April 1, 2014.</em></p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=BZQSGKlgSGE:UKltNhy1BXE:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=BZQSGKlgSGE:UKltNhy1BXE:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/5-myths-about-home-selling-148354/feed/ 28 https://www.zillow.com/blog/5-myths-about-home-selling-148354/ 2019-07-31 14:15 +00:00 2019-08-01 02:15 +12:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976515286/comment-the-coming-rental-housing-crisis?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+The+coming+rental+housing+crisis https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976515286/comment-the-coming-rental-housing-crisis?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+The+coming+rental+housing+crisis COMMENT: The coming rental housing crisis <p>Failure of government to reverse policies will result in a calamitous fall in houses to rent and escalating rents in a crisis unseen since the 1930&rsquo;s, writes veteran property investor Jonathan Bidmead.</p> Tue, 30 Jul 2019 10:25:00 +1200 2019-07-30 10:25 +12:00 2019-07-30 10:25 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=227295 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/-Rp3PJGj6HE/ Unique Homes tiny homes unique homes This School Bus Is a Tiny Home ... to a Family of 6! With bunk beds for the kids, a master bedroom for the adults and a rooftop deck for all, one family is redefining the term "on the go." Wed, 24 Jul 2019 17:49:14 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/school-bus-family-227295/#comments Lindsay Cohen <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The wheels on the bus go round and round - and then might stop for family dinner, if you're Gabriel and Debbie Mayes.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">It may not be the dream for every family, but it's the one Debbie envisioned after seeing a video on Facebook a few years ago. It featured a couple who had converted a school bus and spent all their time on the open road, exploring the country.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"I immediately thought, 'Hey, we can totally do this with our kids. Why not?'" she recalled. "And so I brought the idea to Gabriel. It took a while to convince him."</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"Definitely took a while," Gabriel chimed in.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">But the more the duo thought about the idea, the more it made sense. They felt disconnected as a family in a 5,000-square-foot home; downsizing would bring the family closer.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">4,752 square feet closer, to be precise. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"We were talking about that disconnection in our marriage, in our family as a whole, and just thought if we&#8217;re gonna do anything adventurous, now would be the time," Gabriel said. "We were looking to reconnect, to do something crazy exciting with our kids, and just to take life and flip it upside down."</span></p> <p>So they bought a school bus to live in.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/qcrbB1DQ21k" width="560" height="315" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The family of six - two adults, four kids - sought the help of an outside company when it came to finding the bus and designing the features. </span></p> <figure id="attachment_227512" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-227512" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img class="wp-image-227512 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/008A5465-f62360.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /><figcaption id="caption-attachment-227512" class="wp-caption-text">Photo by Marcus Ricci.</figcaption></figure> <figure id="attachment_227521" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-227521" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img class="wp-image-227521 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/01-15-b417e6.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /><figcaption id="caption-attachment-227521" class="wp-caption-text">Photo by <a href="https://www.themayesteam.com/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">The Mayes Team</a>.</figcaption></figure> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Their priorities: separate sleeping areas for the kids and the adults (the master bedroom has a door that closes), space to entertain guests, and a kitchen with ample countertops. (They pulled that off by installing an under-the-counter fridge. It holds enough food for a week!)</span></p> <figure id="attachment_227515" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-227515" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img class="wp-image-227515 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/008A5496-63608d.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /><figcaption id="caption-attachment-227515" class="wp-caption-text">Photo by Marcus Ricci.</figcaption></figure> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"We even went and taped out the design on the floor so we could walk through and see," Debbie said. "We did things like reduce the depth of the couch, reduce the depth of the [kids'] bunk beds. We knew aisle space would be way more important than them having that extra bed space. I was very intentional in designing all of the little areas to be functional. It&#8217;s down to the inches."</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Gabriel's only ask: a rooftop deck.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"I just had this vision of taking the bus, backing it up against the lake, opening up the skylight out of my bedroom, going up to the roof deck, and then sitting in my chair and just chilling," he said. "I just wanted this place where I&#8217;m secluded from the rest of the world and I&#8217;m overlooking just beautiful scenery."</span></p> <figure id="attachment_227612" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-227612" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img class="wp-image-227612 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/image003-0d5e59.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="450" /><figcaption id="caption-attachment-227612" class="wp-caption-text">Photo by Marcus Ricci.</figcaption></figure> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Buying and renovating the bus cost about $38,000 and took about five months. During that time, the family sold or donated much of what they owned and put the rest in storage. They hit the road in August 2017.</span></p> <figure id="attachment_227526" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-227526" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img class="wp-image-227526 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/21294615_112366462794011_8939184977275256832_n-5cd43d.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="800" /><figcaption id="caption-attachment-227526" class="wp-caption-text">Photo by <a href="https://www.themayesteam.com/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">The Mayes Team</a>.</figcaption></figure> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">On their first trip, the road hit back.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"I remember the day that I got in the bus. We had spent the whole day packing. Last thing goes on, the kids get on, we close the door, and I put it in drive and our home starts moving. I can&#8217;t fully explain how exhilarating that feeling was," Gabriel said.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"It was amazing but also did not go exactly how we had planned," Debbie added. "We got 300 miles into the journey, and the bus broke down on the side of the road. It was like, 'Wah-wah.'"</span></p> <figure id="attachment_227514" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-227514" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img class="wp-image-227514 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/008A5489-310038.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /><figcaption id="caption-attachment-227514" class="wp-caption-text">Photo by Marcus Ricci.</figcaption></figure> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The school bus - which they affectionately call "the Skoolie" - picked a patch of desert land in Oklahoma to break down. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Turns out it was also a piece of private land.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"We fed the kids lunch and tried to figure out what the heck we were gonna do, and a random stranger pulls up after we&#8217;d been there for a few hours, and he was like, 'You&#8217;re actually on my land.'" Debbie said. "But he had been a diesel mechanic."</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The stranger ended up building a part to get the bus moving. It's been pretty much smooth sailing ever since, from the mountains of Wyoming to the Bonneville Salt Flats of Utah.</span></p> <figure id="attachment_227528" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-227528" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img class="size-full wp-image-227528" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/DSC_3043-87a944.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="1198" /><figcaption id="caption-attachment-227528" class="wp-caption-text">Photo by Jen Hammer.</figcaption></figure> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Their biggest advice for others considering a home on wheels: Do the research. Find a builder or designer you can trust. In retrospect, they probably would've chosen a washer and dryer over installing a shower, but they have few other regrets.</span></p> <p>And yes, of course, there are seat belts for all. The family designed the living space to hide the seat belts under the couch cushions when the bus is parked. The baby rides in a car seat. &#8220;They are able to buckle up safely,&#8221; Debbie said, about her kids. Anything that&#8217;s breakable gets packed away for when the bus moves.</p> <figure id="attachment_227518" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-227518" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img class="size-full wp-image-227518" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/008A5531-b59418.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /><figcaption id="caption-attachment-227518" class="wp-caption-text">Photo by Marcus Ricci.</figcaption></figure> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"To be able to have everything that you own as a family of six inside 248 square feet, knowing everything that you own is where it&#8217;s supposed to be - the amount of stress and anxiety really goes out the window," Gabriel said. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"Whenever you rid yourself of this desire to have things, it&#8217;s not that the desire goes away, it&#8217;s just that you just don&#8217;t have the space for it anymore,&#8221; he continued. &#8220;It causes you to start thinking on different levels. Now I just want to be intentional with my wife and be intentional with my kids. This massive weight is just gone."</span></p> <figure id="attachment_227516" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-227516" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img class="wp-image-227516 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/008A5522-85f6cf.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /><figcaption id="caption-attachment-227516" class="wp-caption-text">Photo by Marcus Ricci.</figcaption></figure> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Eventually, the Mayes plan to park the bus and turn it into a short-term rental. They hope to find a forever home and allow others to explore their tiny home on wheels.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"The kids feel like they&#8217;re on this massive adventure. Whenever you pull up to a location that&#8217;s surrounded by mountains or there&#8217;s a new waterfall to go explore or some trail just to go run down, you put the bus in park, and you open the door," Gabriel said. "Just to see their excitement … I&#8217;ve never experienced anything like that."</span></p> <figure id="attachment_227519" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-227519" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img class="size-full wp-image-227519" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/P1000033-9f7858.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="600" /><figcaption id="caption-attachment-227519" class="wp-caption-text">Photo by Marcus Ricci.</figcaption></figure> <p><em>Top featured image by Jen Hammer.</em></p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/home-on-wheels-tips-220828/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Van? RV? School Bus? 6 Questions to Ask Before Choosing a Home on Wheels</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/school-buses-into-homes-205265/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Wild Ride: Turning School Buses Into Homes on Wheels</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/shipping-container-home-226679/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">This Double Shipping Container Home Has Twice the Delight - House of the Week</a></li> </ul> <p><em>Originally published July 2018.</em></p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=-Rp3PJGj6HE:E3YfEEvP-n8:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=-Rp3PJGj6HE:E3YfEEvP-n8:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/school-bus-family-227295/feed/ 7 https://www.zillow.com/blog/school-bus-family-227295/ 2019-07-24 17:49 +00:00 2019-07-25 05:49 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=224985 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/Sndo5dgFYJg/ Unique Homes unique homes 6 Yurts That Will Have You Dreaming of Your Next Adventure From the elegant to the unplugged, these charming circular homes will make your head turn. Wed, 24 Jul 2019 13:45:14 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/6-dreamy-adventure-yurts-224985/#comments Lindsay Cohen <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Contemporary yurts</span><span style="font-weight: 400;"> are popping up everywhere - from Los Angeles to Zion National Park - as airy homes, backcountry destinations or even weekend glamping getaways. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Below are some of our favorites.</span></p> <h2>Marfa, Texas</h2> <figure id="attachment_225125" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-225125" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://elcosmico.com/room/yurts/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-225125 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/Marfa-Yurt-Exterior-Nick-Simonite-f667b6.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="570" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-225125" class="wp-caption-text">Photo by <a href="https://www.nicksimonite.com/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">Nick Simonite</a>.</figcaption></figure> <p>Sleep under a swath of stars in this brightly colored Marfa, Texas, yurt. Located about three hours southeast of El Paso, the yurt sits on a 21-acre artists&#8217; retreat with a hammock grove, bike rentals and wood-fired hot tubs. Bringing friends? The yurt is perched alongside safari tents and renovated vintage trailers.</p> <p>This home is currently available as a <a href="https://elcosmico.com/room/yurts/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">short-term rental</a>.</p> <h2>Orderville, Utah</h2> <figure id="attachment_225126" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-225126" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zionbackcountryglamping.com/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-225126" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/Orderville-_-Zion-Robert-Ranney-e8c9e6.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-225126" class="wp-caption-text">Photo by <a href="http://www.robertranneyphotography.com/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">Robert Ranney</a>.</figcaption></figure> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Just beyond the terra-cotta backdrop of Zion National Park, this Utah yurt is off-grid and on point. Cell service and technology are nonexistent, making for the perfect environment to enjoy this bucolic setting. An outdoor fire pit serves as a spot to warm up underneath the night sky, and the yurt&#8217;s interior can sleep up to 11 people tuckered out from exploring Utah&#8217;s natural bliss.</span></p> <p>This home is currently available for <a href="https://www.zionbackcountryglamping.com/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">short-term stays</a>.</p> <h2>Elgin, Texas</h2> <figure id="attachment_225138" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-225138" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="http://greenacresatx.com/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-225138 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/Elgin-sean-mathis-2-5d77ca.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-225138" class="wp-caption-text">Photo by <a href="http://www.seanmathis.com/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">Sean Mathis</a>.</figcaption></figure> <p>About 30 minutes outside of artsy Austin, Texas, sit five yurts for the glamping fan in all of us. Each space is artfully decorated, from the Southwestern decor to the hand-picked vintage furniture. The rustic surroundings provide the perfect escape from the hubbub of big city life. There&#8217;s a classic writer&#8217;s desk inside each yurt, relaxing hammocks outside and walking trails nearby.</p> <p>These homes are currently available as <a href="http://greenacresatx.com/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">short-term rentals</a>.</p> <h2>Fairplay, Colorado</h2> <figure id="attachment_225123" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-225123" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/21394247?s=51" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-225123 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/Fairplay-CO-Joe-Holmes-0eff41.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="534" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-225123" class="wp-caption-text">Photo by <a href="https://www.instagram.com/theyurtlife" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">Joe Holmes</a>.</figcaption></figure> <p>If the mountains are calling and so you must go, this might be the yurt for you. Nestled in the wilderness about 30 minutes from Denver, this home serves as a Rocky Mountain retreat for explorers of all ages. Enjoy stunning stargazing at night, fresh powder all winter long and 360-degree views from the wraparound deck.</p> <p>This home is currently available as a <a href="https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/21394247?s=51" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">short-term rental</a>.</p> <h2>Los Angeles, California</h2> <figure id="attachment_225124" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-225124" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/1688018" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-225124 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/LA-_-ryan-schude--3b475e.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="1010" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-225124" class="wp-caption-text">Photo by <a href="http://www.ryanschude.com/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">Ryan Schude</a>.</figcaption></figure> <p>This urban yurt proves the circular structures aren&#8217;t just for outdoor explorers. Smack dab in cosmopolitan Los Angeles, this yurt sits under a canopy of orange, lemon and avocado trees, just a few miles from the famous Hollywood sign. The space boasts hardwood floors, modern amenities and a fire pit (for the few weeks each year that LA braves chilly weather).</p> <p>This home is currently available as a <a href="https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/1688018" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">short-term rental</a>.</p> <h2>Saratoga, Wyoming</h2> <figure id="attachment_225129" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-225129" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.brushcreekranch.com/groups/destination-yurt" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-225129 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/Saratoga-WY-_-Courtesy-of-The-Lodge-Spa-at-Brush-Creek-Ranch-bc20c6.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-225129" class="wp-caption-text">Photo courtesy of <a href="https://www.brushcreekranch.com/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">The Lodge &amp; Spa at Brush Creek Ranch</a>.</figcaption></figure> <p>About two hours outside of Cheyenne, Wyoming, sits this 700-square-foot mountain yurt. An overnight stay in this luxury space comes with custom gourmet meals, along with an expert guide to lead you to your digs via horseback. There are luxe glamping amenities on the inside (leather couches and a giant bed) and all that rural Wyoming has to offer on the outside (trout fishing, wildlife viewing and even yoga au naturel).</p> <p>This home is currently available as a <a href="https://www.brushcreekranch.com/groups/destination-yurt" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">short-term rental</a>.</p> <div class="mceTemp"></div> <p><em>Top featured image by <a href="http://www.seanmathis.com/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">Sean Mathis</a>.</em></p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/lunar-lander-tiny-home-226261/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">This Tiny Home Is Ready for Outer Space</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/bubble-dome-home-226153/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Sleep Under the Stars in a Bubble Home</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/barn-style-house-229743/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">This Home Looks Like a Barn (But Has Enough Room to Be a Small Castle)</a></li> </ul> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=Sndo5dgFYJg:Sn4nn0QqvTI:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=Sndo5dgFYJg:Sn4nn0QqvTI:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/6-dreamy-adventure-yurts-224985/feed/ 67 https://www.zillow.com/blog/6-dreamy-adventure-yurts-224985/ 2019-07-24 13:45 +00:00 2019-07-25 01:45 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=220828 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/1r8WzS_1Frk/ Unique Homes homes on wheels Van? RV? School Bus? 6 Questions to Ask Before Choosing a Home on Wheels Let's get down to the nitty-gritty of mobile living. Wed, 24 Jul 2019 13:41:24 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/home-on-wheels-tips-220828/#comments Britany Robinson <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">We've all seen photos of the perfectly manicured home on wheels: the reclaimed wood-lined walls, the occupants dreamily sipping coffee and watching a sunrise. People of all ages (including me) are asking themselves, "Can I do that too?" </span></p> <p>When I first saw the van that would one day be mine, I thought it was perfect for me. The 1986 GMC Vandura had a comfy bed, turquoise cabinets and twinkle lights that made me weak in the knees.</p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">But a mobile life can involve just as much work as a stationary one - sometimes even more. You won't have to pay a mortgage, but you might need new brakes. You won't have to rely on neighbors to water your plants when you travel, but you will have to keep a tiny space organized and livable on the road. </span></p> <p>If those things don&#8217;t scare you off, the rewards can far outweigh the work. Here are some important questions to consider first.</p> <h2>Which home is right for you?</h2> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">There are various names for homes on wheels and recreational vehicles.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The RV is a self-contained, manufactured home on wheels. It typically contains a bathroom and a kitchen, and depending on the version you choose, it can be driven or towed. If you own a vehicle with towing capacity, a towable RV allows you to park and move around more freely.</span></p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-220928" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/offset_531061_resized-16f2d4.jpg" alt="" width="650" height="975" /></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Camper vans are more compact but offer fewer amenities. They might have a small kitchenette but rarely contain a bathroom. If you're willing to rough it on the road, the camper van can be a more affordable option. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Then there are the more creative approaches to mobile living. People have converted </span><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/school-buses-into-homes-205265/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><span style="font-weight: 400;">school buses</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> and vintage <a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/vintage-airstream-remodel-221247/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Airstreams</a></span><span style="font-weight: 400;"> into living quarters. Choosing the vessel for your life on wheels is an important decision, so weigh your options carefully.</span></p> <h2>How will you use it?</h2> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Previously, people bought mobile homes when they retired. These days, the options for remote work allow more people to embrace a mobile lifestyle, with many variations. Some people want to travel regularly, while others park their homes and only occasionally switch locations.</span></p> <p>My motivation for buying a van was the freedom to spend month-long stints on the road and rent out my house whenever I left. As a freelance writer, I often travel in search of stories, and this seemed like a perfect way to do so. I could have the comforts of home and the freedom of wheels.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-220930" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/offset_416264_resized-23151f.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /></p> <p>However, since dropping $5,500 on the initial purchase and about $1,000 in repairs, I've landed a full-time job. It's now more of a weekend camping vehicle than a home. The extra headspace that once seemed luxurious now feels cumbersome, especially when I'm driving over windy mountain passes and spending $60 to fill up my tank. Also, the $80-per-month insurance feels extra expensive, now that I'm paying for something I don't often use.</p> <p>I'll travel regularly in my van someday, but my experience illustrates the importance of knowing how your van will facilitate the life you wish to lead. Where will you go, how often will you go and what will you do? Looking back, I would have gone for something a little smaller and lower maintenance.</p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Freedom can become debilitating if you don't know how you'll use it.</span></p> <h2>Where will you park?</h2> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Campgrounds, RV parks, Walmart parking lots and city streets have all become temporary homes for people who live on the road. But you must consider parking laws, safety and cost - every single night. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">RV parks and many campgrounds offer hookups for electricity and water. If your home is designed to accommodate those amenities, they're nice to have. It helps to research campground details before you hit the road. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">If you're freeing yourself from rent or a mortgage, you might not want to dump that money back into parking each night. National forests offer free camping, as long as you're 100-200 feet away from any road, trail or water source. Ask local ranger stations about <a href="https://freecampsites.net/dispersed-camping/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">access to dispersed camping</a> and local regulations. </span></p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-220941" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/shutterstock_658016389-027696.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="480" /></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">While mobile life is often celebrated with a backdrop of ocean beaches or beloved national parks, cities are something to consider too. They just require a little extra consideration. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Vans have a leg up on bigger, flashier RVs when it comes to cities, especially if your van doesn't look like someone lives in it. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The most important piece of advice when considering where to park: Do your research. Reserve a spot when heading to popular parks, call ranger stations for information about parking in the area, join </span><a href="http://www.cheaprvliving.com/forums/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer"><span style="font-weight: 400;">local forums</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;">, and always collect information ahead of time so you you're not searching for a place to sleep in the middle of the night with no service.</span></p> <h2>How much does it cost?</h2> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Paring down your belongings can be a great way to save money. But mobile living isn&#8217;t always cheap. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">First, there's the cost of your vehicle, which can vary considerably. </span><span style="font-weight: 400;">Conversions - van, Airstream, school bus, etc. - can be expensive, even if you&#8217;re doing the work yourself. For example, </span><a href="http://dynamoultima.com/studio-journal/van-life-a-look-inside-the-costs-of-converting-our-sprinter-van" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer"><span style="font-weight: 400;">this stylish Sprinter van conversion</span></a> <span style="font-weight: 400;">cost $54,120</span><span style="font-weight: 400;">. </span><span style="font-weight: 400;">You'll see a huge range on RV prices as well, from several thousand to </span><span style="font-weight: 400;">millions of dollars</span><span style="font-weight: 400;">.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Once you find a home that&#8217;s right for your budget, you'll need to consider living costs too.</span></p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-220934" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/MG_0966_Jenkins-82705c.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Camping fees are about $20 per night, which can be alleviated by free parking. But you won't get water and electrical hookups unless you pay for them. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Vehicle insurance will add a few hundred to several thousand dollars in yearly costs. Comprehensive auto insurance, while more expensive than bare-boned liability plans, will protect your home and belongings from vandalism and theft. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">I learned the hard way that an RV insurance plan is required of any vehicle that's been converted into a living space. Even though my van isn't technically an RV, AAA initially refused to tow me when I broke down in Seattle because I didn't have RV insurance. I've since upgraded, which has been worth it for the peace of mind. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Depending on the age and condition of your vehicle, you'll also need to factor in regular repairs. And don't forget gas money! You'll spend a lot more on gas for your mobile home than you will on filling up your regular car. And the more toys you carry with your mobile home, the more your gas bills will climb.</span></p> <h2>Where will you go to the bathroom?</h2> <p>Unless you're able to find a mobile home with a built-in shower and toilet, personal hygiene can be a challenge on the road. But there are plenty of creative ways to make it work.</p> <p>A membership to a gym chain with locations across the country, like Planet Fitness or L.A. Fitness, will allow you to access showers and bathrooms - not to mention a workout, which can be vital when your living space only allows you to walk a few feet in either direction.</p> <p>Campgrounds and truck stops also provide facilities to the traveler looking to freshen up.</p> <p>If you don't have a toilet, you'll likely find yourself using truck-stop and cafe bathrooms. But a late-night bathroom break could mean toilets aren't available, and you'll have to settle for whatever is around.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-220939" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/MG_1044_Jenkins-40fd7f.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /></p> <h2>Can you work on the road?</h2> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Remote work opportunities have </span><span style="font-weight: 400;">freed many people</span><span style="font-weight: 400;"> from the constraints of a typical office job. But working from a mobile home is much different than a home office. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">First, consider how often you'll need to work and where you'll be able to do so. It might be helpful to stay close to developed areas where there are plenty of establishments offering free Wi-Fi. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">If you can work comfortably inside of your mobile home, you can use your mobile device as a Wi-Fi hotspot or purchase a dedicated Wi-Fi hotspot for $100-150. Whichever option you go with, you&#8217;ll need to sign up for a service plan with data. Check on the coverage area of service providers before you pick one - they're no use when you're in a dead zone! </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Working from the road also means you'll need electricity, which is nice to have for other uses, too, like charging your cell phone or running a fan to stay cool when your engine is off. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Solar panels</span> <span style="font-weight: 400;">are a convenient, rechargeable and environmentally friendly energy source. </span></p> <p>I can see my van parked on the street from the window of my house right now. I'm still not entirely sure what a mobile life will look like, but figuring it out is half the fun.</p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/this-converted-van-is-a-tiny-home-on-wheels-227330/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">This Converted Van Is a Tiny Home on Wheels</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/6-dreamy-adventure-yurts-224985/">6 Yurts That Will Have You Dreaming of Your Next Adventure</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/school-bus-family-227295/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">This School Bus Is a Tiny Home &#8230; to a Family of 6!</a></li> </ul> <p><em>Originally published September 2017.</em></p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=1r8WzS_1Frk:ymwf3nQVnpA:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=1r8WzS_1Frk:ymwf3nQVnpA:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/home-on-wheels-tips-220828/feed/ 9 https://www.zillow.com/blog/home-on-wheels-tips-220828/ 2019-07-24 13:41 +00:00 2019-07-25 01:41 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=200670 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/mu028pTV9MA/ Tips & Advice staycation Summer Prepare for the Ultimate Staycation Rule #1 of the best week off at home: Plan ahead. Wed, 17 Jul 2019 13:04:59 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/maximize-your-staycation-200670/#comments Sarah Pike <p>You don't need to stay in a hotel and play tourist to have a proper staycation. Look no further than your own home for a staycaytion dreams are made of.</p> <p>Make no mistake, an at-home staycation doesn&#8217;t just mean a lazy weekend on the couch. Turn your humble abode into a resort made for relaxation with a few days of planning and prep work.</p> <p>Here&#8217;s your guide to creating the ultimate staycation.</p> <h2>Tackle chores in advance</h2> <p>Make a list of chores you want to tackle a few days before your staycation begins. At the very least, cover the basics like washing linens, dusting and vacuuming.</p> <p>For an added level of sparkle, schedule time to clean your windows. That way when you're staring out to your backyard garden or pool (aka your staycaytion resort spa), your windows will be as spick-and-span as those at a five-star bed and breakfast.</p> <p>Better yet, for a totally chore-free staycaytion, consider setting aside extra cash for a housecleaning service to do the work for you beforehand.</p> <h2>Maximize your comfort</h2> <p>Maybe your home is already perfectly comfy and cozy. But for maximum staycation relaxation, why not add a few extra elements to make your home feel like a luxury resort?</p> <ul> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><b>Adjust your lighting. </b>Look for soft ambient lighting options to create a calming environment. New lamps for bedroom and living areas and candles for the master bath can completely change the mood of a space.</li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><b>Add new rugs. </b>Soft, plush area rugs boost the comfort level of a room and make a cozy reading spot if you add a few floor pillows.</li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><b>Buy new bedding. </b>Not only will it feel like you're truly on a vacation somewhere else, but new sheets are an added perk after your leisure time comes to a close.</li> </ul> <h2>Create designated spaces</h2> <p>Think about what kind of environment will help you reach peak relaxation. You can do a quick makeover of your bathroom to create a calming home spa or carve out a quiet corner for a meditation or reading nook.</p> <p>If a spa setting is more your style, look at bath pillows, aromatherapy candles and bath oils. Or if you simply crave a reading corner, pick up some new reads that have been sitting on your wish list for too long.</p> <p>If you have kids, create a designated craft or board-game corner, or come up with a few activities they can enjoy while you relax.</p> <p>Look outside for added comfort ideas too. Whether it&#8217;s a hammock, a porch swing or patio furniture, look for ways to blend your staycaytion lounging with the great outdoors.</p> <p>On that note, consider setting up your camping gear in the backyard for part of your staycaytion, or try out a <a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/building-backyard-fire-pit-219141/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">DIY fire pit</a> for late-night chats and s&#8217;mores.</p> <h2>Manage meals ahead of time</h2> <p>Don't waste precious relaxation time planning menus. Pick your favorite family recipes, plan which meals you&#8217;ll have delivered and knock out grocery shopping before your staycaytion begins.</p> <p>If you enjoy cooking, consider using some of your staycation time to make more intricate meals than you typically have time for - or bring in a local chef for a cooking lesson.</p> <h2>Plan ahead to make it count</h2> <p>With a few preparatory tasks on your to-do list, you can turn your house into a staycaytion sanctuary. Map out what you want your staycation to be like, and delegate tasks. Soon you'll be ready for a few days of ultimate relaxation - without ever leaving your home.</p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/solariums-and-sun-rooms-212435/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Spectacular Solariums and Sun Rooms Let in the Light</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/quiz-which-perfect-pool-is-cool-for-the-summer-227324/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Quiz: Which Perfect Pool Is Cool for the Summer?</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/summer-smackdown-which-home-is-your-favorite-230460/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Summer Smackdown: Which Home Is Your Favorite?</a></li> </ul> <p><em>Originally published July 5, 2016.</em></p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=mu028pTV9MA:SeunCACRetA:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=mu028pTV9MA:SeunCACRetA:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/maximize-your-staycation-200670/feed/ 12 https://www.zillow.com/blog/maximize-your-staycation-200670/ 2019-07-17 13:04 +00:00 2019-07-18 01:04 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=230688 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/tjgYs2YGPO0/ Tips & Advice home buying Home selling homeownership Say What? Home-Buying Lingo You Should Know Need a crash course on real estate terms? This glossary will get you started. Mon, 15 Jul 2019 20:15:52 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/real-estate-lingo-and-acronyms-230688/#comments Zillow <p>DTI, PMI, LTV … TBH, it can be hard to keep all this stuff straight. This lexicon of real estate terms and acronyms will help you speak the language like a pro.</p> <p><strong>Appraisal management company (AMC)</strong>: An institution operated independently of a lender that, once notified by a lender, orders a home appraisal.</p> <p><strong>Appraisal</strong>: An informed, impartial and well-documented opinion of the value of a home, prepared by a licensed and certified appraiser and based on data about comparable homes in the area, as well as the appraiser's own walkthrough.</p> <p><strong>Approved for short sale</strong>: A term that indicates that a homeowner&#8217;s bank has approved a reduced listing price on a home, and the home is ready for resale.</p> <p><strong>American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI)</strong>: A not-for-profit professional association that sets and promotes standards for property inspections and provides educational opportunities to its members. (i.e., Look for this accreditation or something similar when shopping for a home inspector.)</p> <p><strong>Attorney state</strong>: A state in which a real estate attorney is responsible for closing.</p> <p><strong>Back-end ratio</strong>: One of two debt-to-income ratios that a lender analyzes to determine a borrower's eligibility for a home loan. The ratio compares the borrower&#8217;s monthly debt payments (proposed housing expenses, plus student loan, car payment, credit card debt, maintenance or child support and installment loans) to gross income.</p> <p><strong>Buyers market</strong>: Market conditions that exist when homes for sale outnumber buyers. Homes sit on the market a long time, and prices drop.</p> <p><strong>Cancellation of escrow</strong>: A situation in which a buyer backs out of a home purchase.</p> <p><strong>Capacity</strong>: The amount of money a home buyer can afford to borrow.</p> <p><strong>Cash-value policy</strong>: A homeowners insurance policy that pays the replacement cost of a home, minus depreciation, should damage occur.</p> <p><strong>Closing</strong>: A one- to two-hour meeting during which ownership of a home is transferred from seller to buyer. A closing is usually attended by the buyer, the seller, both real estate agents and the lender.</p> <p><strong>Closing costs</strong>: Fees associated with the purchase of a home that are due at the end of the sales transaction. Fees may include the appraisal, the home inspection, a title search, a pest inspection and more. Buyers should budget for an amount that is 1% to 3% of the home's purchase price.</p> <p><strong>Closing disclosure (CD)</strong>: A five-page document sent to the buyer three days before closing. This document spells out all the terms of the loan: the amount, the interest rate, the monthly payment, mortgage insurance, the monthly escrow amount and all closing costs.</p> <p><strong>Closing escrow</strong>: The final and official transfer of property from seller to buyer and delivery of appropriate paperwork to each party. Closing of escrow is the responsibility of the escrow agent.</p> <p><strong>Comparative market analysis (CMA)</strong>: An in-depth analysis, prepared by a real estate agent, that determines the estimated value of a home based on recently sold homes of similar condition, size, features and age that are located in the same area.</p> <p><strong>Compliance agreement</strong>: A document signed by the buyer at closing, in which they agree to cooperate if the lender needs to fix any mistakes in the loan documents.</p> <p><strong>Comps</strong>: Or comparable sales, are homes in a given area that have sold within the past six months that a real estate agent uses to determine a home's value.</p> <p><strong>Condo insurance</strong>: Homeowners insurance that covers personal property and the interior of a condo unit should damage occur.</p> <p><strong>Contingencies</strong>: Conditions written into a home purchase contract that protect the buyer should issues arise with financing, the home inspection, etc.</p> <p><strong>Conventional 97</strong>: A home loan that requires a down payment equivalent to 3% of the home's purchase price. Private mortgage insurance, which is required, can be canceled when the owner reaches 80% equity.</p> <p><strong>Conventional loan</strong>: A home loan not guaranteed by a government agency, such as the FHA or the VA.</p> <p><strong>Days on market (DOM)</strong>: The number of days a property listing is considered active.</p> <p><strong>Depository institutions</strong>: Banks, savings and loans, and credit unions. These institutions underwrite as well as set home loan pricing in-house.</p> <p><strong>Down payment</strong>: A certain portion of the home's purchase price that a buyer must pay. A minimum requirement is often dictated by the loan type.</p> <p><strong>Debt-to-income ratio (DTI)</strong>: A ratio that compares a home buyer's expenses to gross income.</p> <p><strong>Earnest money</strong>: A security deposit made by the buyer to assure the seller of his or her intent to purchase.</p> <p><strong>Equity</strong>: A percentage of the home's value owned by the homeowner.</p> <p><strong>Escrow account</strong>: An account required by a lender and funded by a buyer's mortgage payment to pay the buyer's homeowners insurance and property taxes.</p> <p><strong>Escrow agent</strong>: A neutral third-party officer who holds all paperwork and funding in trust until all parties in the transaction fulfill their obligations as part of the transfer of property ownership.</p> <p><strong>Escrow state</strong>: A state in which an escrow agent is responsible for closing.</p> <p><strong>Fannie Mae</strong>: A government-sponsored enterprise chartered in 1938 to help ensure a reliable and affordable supply of mortgage funds throughout the country.</p> <p><strong>Federal Reserve</strong>: The central bank of the United States, established in 1913 to provide the nation with a safer, more flexible and more stable monetary and financial system.</p> <p><strong>Federal Housing Administration (FHA)</strong>: A government agency created by the National Housing Act of 1934 that insures loans made by private lenders.</p> <p><strong>FHA 203(k)</strong>: A rehabilitation loan backed by the federal government that permits home buyers to finance money into a mortgage to repair, improve or upgrade a home.</p> <p><strong>Foreclosure</strong>: A property repossessed by a bank when the owner fails to make mortgage payments.</p> <p><strong>Freddie Mac</strong>: A government agency chartered by Congress in 1970 to provide a constant source of mortgage funding for the nation's housing markets.</p> <p><strong>Funding fee</strong>: A fee that protects the lender from loss and also funds the loan program itself. Examples include the VA funding fee and the FHA funding fee.</p> <p><strong>Gentrification</strong>: The process of rehabilitation and renewal that occurs in an urban area as the demographic changes. Rents and property values increase, culture changes and lower-income residents are often displaced.</p> <p><strong>Guaranteed replacement coverage</strong>: Homeowners insurance that covers what it would cost to replace property based on today&#8217;s prices, not original purchase price, should damage occur.</p> <p><strong>Homeowners association (HOA)</strong>: The governing body of a housing development, condo or townhome complex that sets rules and regulations and charges dues and special assessments used to maintain common areas and cover unexpected expenses respectively.</p> <p><strong>Home equity line of credit (HELOC)</strong>: A revolving line of credit with an adjustable interest rate. Like a credit card, this line of credit has a limit. There is a specified time during which money can be drawn. Payment in full is due at the end of the draw period.</p> <p><strong>Home equity loan</strong>: A lump-sum loan that allows the homeowner to use the equity in their home as collateral. The loan places a lien against the property and reduces home equity.</p> <p><strong>Home inspection</strong>: A nondestructive visual look at the systems in a building. Inspection occurs when the home is under contract or in escrow.</p> <p><strong>Homeowners insurance</strong>: A policy that protects the structure of the home, its contents, injury to others and living expenses should damage occur.</p> <p><strong>Housing ratio</strong>: One of two debt-to-income ratios that a lender analyzes to determine a borrower's eligibility for a home loan. The ratio compares total housing cost (principal, homeowners insurance, taxes and private mortgage insurance) to gross income.</p> <p><strong>In escrow</strong>: A period of time (30 days or longer) after a buyer has made an offer on a home and a seller has accepted. During this time, the home is inspected and appraised, and the title searched for liens, etc.</p> <p><strong>Jumbo loan</strong>: A loan amount that exceeds the Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac limit, which is generally $425,100 in most parts of the U.S.</p> <p><strong>Listing price</strong>: The price of a home, as set by the seller.</p> <p><strong>Loan estimate</strong>: A three-page document sent to an applicant three days after they apply for a home loan. The document includes loan terms, monthly payment and closing costs.</p> <p><strong>Loan-to-value ratio (LTV)</strong>: The amount of the loan divided by the price of the house. Lenders reward lower LTV ratios.</p> <p><strong>Market value coverage</strong>: Homeowners insurance that covers the amount the home would go for on the market, not the cost to repair, should damage occur.</p> <p><strong>Mechanic&#8217;s lien</strong>: A hold against a property, filed in the county recorder&#8217;s office by someone who's done work on a home and not been paid. If the homeowner refuses to pay, the lien allows a foreclosure action.</p> <p><strong>Mortgage broker</strong>: A licensed professional who works on behalf of the buyer to secure financing through a bank or other lending institution.</p> <p><strong>Mortgage companies</strong>: Lenders who underwrite loans in-house and fund loans from a line of credit before selling them off to a loan buyer.</p> <p><strong>Mortgage interest deduction</strong>: Mortgage interest paid in a year subtracted from annual gross salary.</p> <p><strong>Mortgage interest rate</strong>: The price of borrowing money. The base rate is set by the Federal Reserve and then customized per borrower, based on credit score, down payment, property type and points the buyer pays to lower the rate.</p> <p><strong>Multiple listing service (MLS)</strong>: A database where real estate agents list properties for sale.</p> <p><strong>Origination fee</strong>: A fee, charged by a broker or lender, to initiate and complete the home loan application process.</p> <p><strong>Piggyback loan</strong>: A combination of loans bundled to avoid private mortgage Insurance. One loan covers 80% of the home's value, another loan covers 10% to 15% of the home's value, and the buyer contributes the remainder.</p> <p><strong>Principal, interest, property taxes and homeowners insurance (PITI)</strong>: The components of a monthly mortgage payment.</p> <p><strong>Private mortgage insurance (PMI)</strong>: A fee charged to borrowers who make a down payment that is less than 20% of the home's value. The fee, 0.3% to 1.5% of the yearly loan amount, can be canceled in certain circumstances when the borrower reaches 20% equity.</p> <p><strong>Points</strong>: Prepaid interest owed at closing, with one point representing 1% of the loan. Paying points, which are tax deductible, will lower the monthly mortgage payment.</p> <p><strong>Pre-approval</strong>: A thorough assessment of a borrower's income, assets and other data to determine a loan amount they would qualify for. A real estate agent will request a pre-approval or pre-qualification letter before showing a buyer a home.</p> <p><strong>Pre-qualification</strong>: A basic assessment of income, assets and credit score to determine what, if any, loan programs a borrower might qualify for. A real estate agent will request a pre-approval or pre-qualification letter before showing a buyer a home.</p> <p><strong>Property tax exemption</strong>: A reduction in taxes based on specific criteria, such as installation of a renewable energy system or rehabilitation of a historic home.</p> <p><strong>Round table closing</strong>: All parties (the buyer, the seller, the real estate agents and maybe the lender) meet at a specified time to sign paperwork, pay fees and finalize the transfer of homeownership.</p> <p><strong>Sellers market</strong>: Market conditions that exist when buyers outnumber homes for sale. Bidding wars are common.</p> <p><strong>Short sale</strong>: The sale of a home by an owner who owes more on the home than it's worth (i.e., "underwater" or "upside down"). The owner's bank must approve a lower listing price before the home can be sold.</p> <p><strong>Special assessment</strong>: A fee charged by a condo complex HOA when cash on reserve is not enough to cover unexpected expenses.</p> <p><strong>Tax lien</strong>: The government's legal claim against property when the homeowner neglects or fails to pay a tax debt.</p> <p><strong>Third-party review required</strong>: Verbiage included in a home listing to indicate that the lender has not yet approved the home for short sale. The seller must submit the buyer's offer to the lender for approval.</p> <p><strong>Title insurance</strong>: Insurance that protects the buyer and lender should an individual or entity step forward with a claim that was attached to the property before the seller transferred legal ownership of the property or "title" to the buyer.</p> <p><strong>Transfer stamps</strong>: The form in which transfer taxes are paid by the home buyer. Stamps can also serve as proof of transfer tax payment.</p> <p><strong>Transfer taxes</strong>: Fees imposed by the state, county or municipality on transfer of title.</p> <p><strong>Under contract</strong>: A period of time (30 days or longer) after a buyer has made an offer on a home and a seller has accepted. During this time, the home is inspected and appraised, and the title is searched for liens, etc.</p> <p><strong>Underwater or upside down</strong>: A situation in which a homeowner owes more for a property than it's worth.</p> <p><strong>Underwriting</strong>: A process a lender follows to assess a home loan applicant's income, assets and credit, and the risk involved in offering the applicant a mortgage.</p> <p><strong>VA home loan</strong>: A home loan partially guaranteed by the United States Department of Veteran Affairs and offered by private lenders, such as banks and mortgage companies.</p> <p><strong>VantageScore</strong>: A credit scoring model lenders use to make lending decisions. A borrower's score is based on bill-paying habits, debt balances, age, variety of credit accounts and number of inquiries on credit reports.</p> <p><strong>Walkthrough</strong>: A buyer's final inspection of a home before closing.</p> <p><strong>Water certificate</strong>: A document that certifies that a water account has been paid in full. The seller must produce this certificate at closing.</p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/10-things-must-do-buying-a-home-224314/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">10 Things You Need to Do When Buying A Home</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/right-time-to-buy-or-sell-home-198898/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Predicting the &#8216;Right Time&#8217; to Buy or Sell a Home</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/5-myths-about-real-estate-agents-227286/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Don&#8217;t Believe These 5 Myths About Real Estate Agents</a></li> </ul> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=tjgYs2YGPO0:og6-G4AA6k0:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=tjgYs2YGPO0:og6-G4AA6k0:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/real-estate-lingo-and-acronyms-230688/feed/ 2 https://www.zillow.com/blog/real-estate-lingo-and-acronyms-230688/ 2019-07-15 20:15 +00:00 2019-07-16 08:15 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=200404 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/dEqODPI74Dk/ Tips & Advice staycation Summer 8 Budget-Friendly Staycation Ideas for Families Staying home doesn't mean you can't have an adventure. Mon, 15 Jul 2019 13:00:42 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/budget-staycation-ideas-family-200404/#comments Erica Sooter <p>Disneyland, the beach, camping &#8230; just a few of the many places your kids would nominate as a vacation destination this summer. But staying home?</p> <p>B-O-R-I-N-G.</p> <p>So how do you sell a staycation to your little ones? And not spend a ton of money? Fill it with fun and adventure.</p> <p>Check out these eight kid- and budget-friendly ideas that will make your summer staycation just as lively and memorable as any trip.</p> <h2>Camp out in your backyard</h2> <p>Pitch a tent, grab the camp chairs and roll out those sleeping bags. It&#8217;s time to go camping - in your backyard!</p> <p>Study the local flora and fauna, practice wilderness skills, roast marshmallows over <a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/building-backyard-fire-pit-219141/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">a fire pit</a>, tell scary stories and spot constellations in the night sky.</p> <div class="video-container"><iframe title="Zillow #HomemadeHack: DIY Backyard Tabletop S&#039;mores" width="500" height="375" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/qS50mZYBtxU?feature=oembed&#038;enablejsapi=1&#038;modestbranding=1&#038;rel=0&#038;showinfo=0" frameborder="0" allow="accelerometer; autoplay; encrypted-media; gyroscope; picture-in-picture" allowfullscreen></iframe></div> <h2>Get your chef on</h2> <p>Let your little chefs put their skills to the test with a &#8220;Top Chef&#8221; competition. Introduce a mystery ingredient, work in teams and see what you can come up with.</p> <p>If competition isn&#8217;t your style, simply head to the farmer&#8217;s market or grocery store and pick out a unique ingredient and see what your family can come up with to put in a dish.</p> <p>Have a sweet tooth? Throw a bake-off and create your favorite cookies, cupcakes or cake. Share the snacks with friends and neighbors too.</p> <h2>Family carnival</h2> <p>Create your very own town fair, and bring your friends and family members in on the fun. Serve up classic carnival food like corn dogs, french fries, funnel cake and cotton candy.</p> <p>Set up DIY games like ring toss, cake walk, corn hole, balloon darts, a fishing hole and more.</p> <p>Finish off the night with an outdoor movie by stringing up a sheet and using a projector.</p> <div class="video-container"><iframe title="Zillow #HomemadeHack: Make a life size game board on your lawn" width="500" height="375" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/yXRkCLyPe3U?feature=oembed&#038;enablejsapi=1&#038;modestbranding=1&#038;rel=0&#038;showinfo=0" frameborder="0" allow="accelerometer; autoplay; encrypted-media; gyroscope; picture-in-picture" allowfullscreen></iframe></div> <h2>Learn something new</h2> <p>Take an online course to learn a new skill or craft, or figure out how to play an outdoor game like bocce ball or croquet. Practice a different language with books from the library, or hit the zoo to learn about a new animal.</p> <h2>Build a fort</h2> <p>Wrangle all the cardboard boxes, blankets, chairs and pillows you can find and <a href="https://www.facebook.com/Zillow/videos/10154281496363594/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">build the ultimate playhouse</a> or fort.</p> <p>Construct tunnels with boxes (bonus if you can snag a large refrigerator box), create rooms with blankets and chairs, and arm your fortress by building a pillow moat. Play castle or just snuggle up in your cozy den and watch a movie - don&#8217;t forget the popcorn.</p> <p>Keep the fun going into the night: Add twinkle lights and have a sleepover in your new castle.</p> <h2>Cool down with water play</h2> <p>Hot summer day? Cool down by making your own backyard into a mini water park.</p> <p>Break out the sprinkler and burn off some energy by splashing around. Fill the kiddie pool and hop in with your little ones, or wage a water balloon or squirt-gun fight for an afternoon that&#8217;s guaranteed to cool you off and make you feel like a kid again.</p> <p>Live in an apartment or don&#8217;t have the water gear? Head to your local splash pad or community pool. To save money, look for free or discount promotions at the pool or water park.</p> <h2>Find your inner artist</h2> <p>Arts and crafts are a great way to get those creative juices flowing, make fun memories and create cool pieces to treasure for years to come.</p> <p>Tie-dye some plain T-shirts, create your own modeling clay using flour and salt, make beaded bracelets, or try your hand at loom weaving.</p> <p>Keep things even simpler by drawing with some sidewalk chalk, building a birdhouse out of Popsicle sticks, or simply getting messy with some finger paint.</p> <h2>Plan a treasure or scavenger hunt</h2> <p>Set up a string of clues for your kids to follow that lead them all around the house, yard and even the neighborhood. Make up your own clues or check online for clever rhymes or location ideas.</p> <p>End the hunt with a fun prize, which can be anything from a chest full of faux gold coins, a long-desired toy or trinket, or a plate of fresh cookies or cupcakes. Add a dash of extra fun by dressing up as pirates or explorers.</p> <p>Whether you have a lot of free time or a little, a chunk of change to spend or a limited budget, there are plenty of fun staycation ideas to make your summer special.</p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/maximize-your-staycation-200670/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Prepare for the Ultimate Staycation</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/sporting-goods-catchall-220812/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">With This DIY Sporting Goods Catch-All, Game Day Is No Sweat</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/summer-smackdown-which-home-is-your-favorite-230460/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Summer Smackdown: Which Home Is Your Favorite?</a></li> </ul> <p><em>Originally published May 2016.</em></p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=dEqODPI74Dk:1nHhxCMtyu4:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=dEqODPI74Dk:1nHhxCMtyu4:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/budget-staycation-ideas-family-200404/feed/ 5 https://www.zillow.com/blog/budget-staycation-ideas-family-200404/ 2019-07-15 13:00 +00:00 2019-07-16 01:00 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=230693 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/PnUD28jeu-4/ Tips & Advice home buying legal issues Buyer, Beware: Is Your Future House Haunted? Paranormal activity, suicide, murder, cult activity, famous adulteries - is that dream house a "stigmatized property"? Sun, 14 Jul 2019 21:36:33 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/how-to-tell-if-a-house-is-haunted-230693/#comments Dana Bull <p>We've all heard home-buying horror stories. Sellers backing out or financing falling through can quickly kill a deal. But these snags don't hold a candle to buying a "stigmatized" home.</p> <p>A home where paranormal activity, suicide, murder, cult activity or other misfortunes and crimes took place could be categorized as a stigmatized property.</p> <p>In real estate terms, a stigma refers to an intangible attribute of a property that may prompt a psychological or emotional response on the part of a potential buyer. In addition to physical defects, a house may have unusual features or a history that negatively impacts its value.</p> <h2>Get to know your state's disclosure laws</h2> <p>Here's a scary fact: A listing agent may not be required to disclose a stigma to buyers.</p> <p>Ever heard the phrase "caveat emptor" (let the buyer beware)? In the past, sellers were not required to disclose anything about homes they were selling. Over the years, most states have made changes to this rule and now require that buyers be made aware of certain issues.</p> <p>The law urges buyers, sellers and their agents to engage in fair and honest dealing with all principals in the real estate transaction. However, the laws that regulate disclosure of sketchy events vary from state to state. Some state laws explicitly relieve the salesperson or broker of the obligation to disclose certain property stigmas.</p> <p>For instance, what if a house is haunted? Massachusetts is particularly lax when it comes to stigmas. In the witch city of Salem, a seller's agent does not necessarily need to volunteer information about paranormal activity or even a felony, suicide or homicide that has occurred in a home.</p> <p>But if you or your agent asks a seller's agent directly, they must answer truthfully. This differs from California's stringent laws, which, in addition to other disclosures, mandate that buyers be informed of any deaths that occurred at a property in the last three years.</p> <p>While it's certainly ethical for sellers to be upfront about any defects that may impact the value of a property, it may not be a legal requirement.</p> <h2>Research before you fall in love</h2> <p>Since you're unlikely to find the descriptors "haunted" or "former crime scene" in a property listing, how should you go about digging up some dirt?</p> <ul> <li>Check with a real estate attorney in your state to see what disclosures are required.</li> <li>Ask the seller's representative if criminal or paranormal activity has been reported. Again, sellers and their agents are legally obligated to reveal problems they're aware of when asked.</li> <li>Carefully review the seller's disclosures, if one is included with the listing. In many states, property owners are forced to put their real estate disclosures in writing.</li> <li>Get the inside scoop from the neighbors.</li> <li>Always Google the address of your future home. You may uncover a headline that sways your decision.</li> </ul> <p>You may learn that a former owner passed away in the house. In areas with older properties, this is likely going to be the case, though it may not be cause for concern. Someone peacefully passing away in the comfort of their home is a lot different from a situation that involved foul play.</p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/who-is-responsible-for-problems-in-your-rental-229409/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Tenant Troubles: Who Is Responsible for Problems in Your Rental?</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/3-things-you-should-know-about-preliminary-title-reports-77349/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">3 Things You Should Know About Preliminary Title Reports</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/what-you-need-to-know-about-the-fair-housing-act-227310/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">What You Need to Know About the Fair Housing Act</a></li> </ul> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=PnUD28jeu-4:MdR_qXyhG-o:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=PnUD28jeu-4:MdR_qXyhG-o:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/how-to-tell-if-a-house-is-haunted-230693/feed/ 7 https://www.zillow.com/blog/how-to-tell-if-a-house-is-haunted-230693/ 2019-07-14 21:36 +00:00 2019-07-15 09:36 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=230707 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/IAN70wOuARI/ Home Improvement curb appeal DIY 3 Simple DIY Driveway Ideas Nowhere to park? Create your own driveway with one of these affordable methods. Sat, 13 Jul 2019 23:12:24 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/diy-driveway-ideas-230707/#respond Tim Layton <p>A DIY driveway can be an easy want to add parking or improve the look of your home. Here are three relatively simple options.</p> <h2>1. Carve out a parking pad</h2> <p>The easiest, most affordable way to get an extra parking space is to clear out some grass and throw down mulch. It works fine, looks good and can be done in a day.</p> <p>But beware: Mulch isn't a permanent solution. Mulch breaks down over time, floats away in a heavy rain and fades in the sun. Over time, you may end up spending more money sprucing up the mulch than you would have pouring concrete in the first place.</p> <p>Be sure to use a store-bought landscape barrier, or even lay down newspaper to prevent weeds.</p> <p>If mulch seems too temporary, consider other loose materials like gravel, stones or crushed oyster shells.</p> <h2>2. Build a DIY driveway with pavers</h2> <p>A more solid parking option is a concrete or brick <a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/diy-pavers-driveway-230682/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">paver driveway</a>. It can be installed either professionally or DIY. Thousands of videos online show the steps and all the tricks of the trade. It's really quite simple:</p> <ol> <li>Excavate the area to be paved.</li> <li>Install a base material, such as crushed concrete, at a thickness of a few inches.</li> <li>Pack down the base material with a compactor, making sure to slope it as desired.</li> <li>Install a thin layer of sand on top of the base material.</li> <li>Install paver blocks on the sand layer, laying them in place in the pattern of your choice.</li> <li>Install a border row of bricks along the edges, and back that row with a poured concrete edge restraint, which will keep things from moving outward.</li> <li>Put another layer of sand on top of the finished surface and broom it into the joints between the bricks.</li> </ol> <p>When installed properly, a paver driveway can last for decades.</p> <h2>3. Go with classic concrete</h2> <p>Finally, there is the tried-and-true concrete driveway. There's a reason concrete is still the most common driveway product in the world: It looks good, doesn't cost a fortune and lasts a very long time.</p> <p>There are fewer steps to pouring a concrete parking area than there is to installing pavers, but it's not quite as beginner-friendly. If you've never poured concrete before, it's a good idea to start with a smaller area, such as a sidewalk, before tackling a large area.</p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/how-to-insulate-ductwork-230676/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Sealing and Insulating Your Ductwork</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/fix-ceiling-water-stains-228823/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">How to Fix Ceiling Water Stains</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/how-to-replace-a-ceiling-fan-227357/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">How to Replace a Ceiling Fan</a></li> </ul> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=IAN70wOuARI:GEQX0RDL2iA:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=IAN70wOuARI:GEQX0RDL2iA:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/diy-driveway-ideas-230707/feed/ 0 https://www.zillow.com/blog/diy-driveway-ideas-230707/ 2019-07-13 23:12 +00:00 2019-07-14 11:12 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=230682 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/AxVR8JdO1S0/ Home Improvement DIY home maintenance A DIY Guide to Concrete Pavers for Driveways Get everything you need to know before kicking off your driveway remodel project. Fri, 12 Jul 2019 18:16:24 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/diy-pavers-driveway-230682/#respond Karie Fay <p>Beyond the variety of styles, colors, textures and shapes available, pavers - often called paving stones - have distinct advantages over other driveway surfaces.</p> <h2>Why choose concrete pavers for your driveway?</h2> <p>Among other benefits, a concrete paver driveway delivers the following.</p> <p><strong>Strength, durability and longevity</strong>: Sheet concrete and asphalt look good, but they really aren't as strong and durable as you might think. Your driveway becomes nothing more than one giant slab. Although strong when in good condition, it won't handle age or freezing and thawing very well. Eventually, it will crack, calling for major repair work or replacement.</p> <p>Concrete pavers, in contrast, combine the strength and comfort of newly poured, solid driveway surfaces with the flexibility they lack. Concrete pavers will not crack from weather and will likely last for decades. The biggest drawback is that pavers may settle if the foundation material underneath shifts. The fix is simple, however: Remove, readjust and reset the affected pavers.</p> <p><strong>Ease of maintenance</strong>: Whether you have to recoat, reseal, spread more of it, grade it or replace it, it seems like there's always something your driveway needs when you have a traditional driveway material. A concrete paver driveway is about as close as you can get to "install it and forget it." Once laid and sealed, it's virtually maintenance-free unless you need to adjust or replace a paver or two.</p> <p><strong>Cost</strong>: Sure, concrete pavers typically cost more upfront than stone and slab paving materials. However, a concrete paver driveway pays for itself over time in both lower maintenance costs (including time and money) and the fact that long after other driveway materials fail, your concrete pavers will likely still look - and work - wonderfully.</p> <p><strong>DIY installation</strong>: Ask anyone who has ever poured concrete or asphalt - it's hard work. Done improperly, the material is likely to fail. Even spreading dirt or rock is tiring. In contrast, most concrete pavers are fairly DIY-friendly. The hardest portion is grading and preparing the base material, and any specialized equipment is easily rented. Alternatively, consider hiring a contractor for this part of the driveway project. Next, simply start laying pavers in place like a jigsaw puzzle.</p> <h2>Planning your driveway</h2> <p>While you're looking at other concrete paver projects and considering the myriad colors, styles and other options, you're also planning the driveway project. The two steps go hand in hand. You can't really plan how many pavers you need, after all, until you know the size of your driveway and a general idea of what you want. You also can't really plan the final appearance until you choose your pavers.</p> <p>Try making a sketch first. Having your vision on paper allows for more precise planning. Next, stake out the driveway area. Measure and mark the length and width, following any curve or direction you choose. Allow for a minimum driveway width of 12 feet in the vehicle parking area to provide plenty of walkway around the cars. For length, allot at least 18 feet of length for each vehicle planned.</p> <p>Decide what portion - if any - of the work you wish to do yourself. If the driveway area needs excavation, professional help will be useful. It also needs to be graded - meaning slightly sloped to allow water to run off into the appropriate area. A contractor knows how to easily grade the area while digging it out.</p> <p>On top of hiring out the excavation and grading, you can also hire someone to lay the substrates (two layers) and even the pavers themselves. If you go this direction, make sure to comparison shop. Ask the contractor about other projects they've worked on and ask for pictures. Find out specifically what the contractor will and will not do.</p> <p>If you choose to do the work yourself, make sure to line up everything you need before you start. Besides pavers, you also need the substrate materials (usually aggregate and sand) and the tools. You can rent plate compactors, diamond blade wet saws and other heavy equipment at most tool and equipment rental stores.</p> <h2>DIY concrete paver installation</h2> <p>Even if you prefer to have someone build your concrete paver driveway for you, it's still useful to understand the general process.</p> <p>The most important part of the job is a properly prepared and compacted substrate. The driveway foundation is essential for a quality installation that lasts. While the following information covers the basic steps, it isn't intended to be an exhaustive guide. If you're uncertain about any procedure or have questions, consult a concrete paver installation professional.</p> <ul> <li>Call 811 to request an underground utilities check. Never dig without first checking for these.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Excavate the driveway area to at least 15 inches. Your area may need a deeper drainage base. Talk to local building professionals if you're uncertain. Depth depends on the results of a percolation test, which measures how fast the soil absorbs rainwater. Contact your local Cooperative Extension for more details.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Compact the subgrade to provide a solid, stable soil base.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Install screen, if desired, to discourage weed growth.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Spread and compact a layer of paver base. Typically this is a 6-inch layer of washed, crushed stone (not river gravel or other rounded rock). Choose rock with a 3/4- to 2-inch diameter.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Cover the base with a 1-inch layer of concrete sand. Screed the surface - take a long flat edge and pull it across the surface to leave it perfectly smooth and level.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Set the edging around the driveway borders. Edging, called restraints, is critical - it isn't just ornamental. It helps keep each paver from shifting.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Place the concrete pavers according to your design. Set pavers together closely to minimize joints.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Spread mason sand over the pavers. Tamp down the pavers mechanically to force sand into the joints.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Finish with a layer of concrete sealer once the driveway is completely set. Spray on with a garden sprayer, following the product instructions for best results.</li> </ul> <p><strong>Note:</strong> In colder climates, consider installing a special snow-melting system beneath the pavers. Much like radiant heating systems indoors, these driveway-warming devices use heated cables to keep ice and snow off your driving surface. Ask a professional for further information.</p> <h2>Driveway maintenance</h2> <p>Concrete paver driveways don't require much maintenance if they are protected with a quality sealer and the joints are properly filled. To keep your driveway looking its best:</p> <ul> <li>Sweep regularly to keep dirt, leaves and other debris from accumulating.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Rinse when necessary to remove heavy soiling.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Treat oil and grease stains with a pressure washer and the appropriate cleaning solution.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Reseal the driveway surface every few years.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Plow or shovel in winter as needed. Avoid using sharp objects to chip at the ice, which may result in shattering or cracking the pavers.</li> </ul> <p>Use sand or a noncorrosive deicer like calcium magnesium acetate, never rock salt (sodium chloride) or calcium chloride. These products may cause efflorescence - a white, chalky discoloration.</p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/how-to-seal-and-insulate-ductwork-230676/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Sealing and Insulating Your Ductwork</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/building-backyard-fire-pit-219141/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">DIY Backyard Fire Pit: Build It in Just 7 Easy Steps</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/sporting-goods-catchall-220812/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">With This DIY Sporting Goods Catch-All, Game Day Is No Sweat</a></li> </ul> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=AxVR8JdO1S0:gzvdFlzJawk:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=AxVR8JdO1S0:gzvdFlzJawk:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/diy-pavers-driveway-230682/feed/ 0 https://www.zillow.com/blog/diy-pavers-driveway-230682/ 2019-07-12 18:16 +00:00 2019-07-13 06:16 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=230671 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/kNe5F7F-Ba0/ Tips & Advice taxes Investment Property: How Much Can You Write Off on Your Taxes? Learn how to navigate the tricky tax laws around investment properties, including ways to save. Thu, 11 Jul 2019 17:56:53 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/tax-on-investment-properties-230671/#respond Jason Van Steenwyk <p>There are certain things you can do as a real estate investor to help manage your tax bill and maximize your after-tax return on investment. To do so, however, you need to understand the primary ways in which investment real estate portfolios get taxed. You must also have a general grasp of some abstract concepts like calculating your tax basis, as well as the depreciation of capital investments.</p> <p>Warning: This article is not going to make you an expert. But it will acquaint you with the basic terminology so you can be better prepared for a meeting with your tax adviser.</p> <h2>Taxation of rental income</h2> <p>The IRS taxes the real estate portfolios of living investors in two primary ways: income tax and capital gains tax. (A third way, <a href="https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/estate-tax" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">estate tax</a>, applies only to dead investors.)</p> <p>Rental income is taxable - as <a href="https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/tips-on-rental-real-estate-income-deductions-and-recordkeeping" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">ordinary income tax</a>. That means you must declare it as income on your tax return and pay income tax on it. Unlike wages, rental income is not subject to FICA taxes.</p> <p>Your income is everything you get from rents and royalties on the property, minus any deductible expenses. You can't deduct everything though. You can only deduct mortgage interest and repairs you make that restore the property to its original minimally functional condition. You can't deduct capital investments like new buildings, additions or renovations. More on these later.</p> <h2>Capital gains tax</h2> <p>The second tax bill you need to worry about is <a href="https://www.irs.gov/taxtopics/tc409.html" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">capital gains tax</a>. The IRS taxes you on any net profits you get out of a property when you sell it. If you're flipping the property and you've owned it for less than a year, you pay short-term capital gains tax, which is the same rate as your marginal income tax rate. If you're in the 28% tax bracket, you'll pay a 28% tax on short-term capital gains.</p> <p>If you hold the property for 12 months, you'll qualify for more favorable long-term capital gains. Depending on your marginal income tax bracket, these taxes could range from 0% to 15%. In every bracket, however, the IRS takes a smaller cut out of long-term gains than out of ordinary income or short-term gains.</p> <h3>Calculating capital gains</h3> <p>You pay capital gains tax on the difference between your selling price in the property and your adjusted tax basis. Your adjusted tax basis in a property is the original cost you paid for the property, plus any amount invested in renovations and improvements (including labor costs on these projects) that you have not previously deducted for taxes.</p> <p>If you have deductions associated with the property, you subtract them from your tax basis. If your adjusted tax basis is higher than your sale, you have a capital loss. You can subtract capital losses from a given year from capital gains to reduce your tax bill. If you have more capital losses than capital gains, you can "carry forward" these capital losses into future years to offset future capital gains. If you have no capital gains, you can deduct $3,000 annually until you have recognized all your capital loss carryforward.</p> <h3>How to defer capital gains taxes: an intro to like-kind exchanges</h3> <p>The IRS provides an important exception to capital gains taxation, made-to-order for real estate investors: If you own an investment property, you can sell your property at a profit and roll your money over into another property within 60 days without having to pay capital gains taxes at all. This transaction is known as a Section 1031 exchange, named for the section of the U.S. Revenue Code that allows it. You cannot swap your rental property for a personal residence, or vice versa. For this reason, these exchanges are called like-kind exchanges, in that the property you replace it with needs to be substantially similar to what you sold.</p> <p>The 1031 exchange makes it possible for real estate investors to defer paying capital gains tax, which is another advantage over investing in mutual funds, stocks, bonds and other securities or collectibles. Outside of a retirement account, you have to pay tax on gains in these items by April 15 of the year after you sold them.</p> <h2>Depreciation and amortization</h2> <p>This is a broad concept, so we can only cover the very basics here. When you buy investment property - be it a building, a computer or a horse - the IRS knows that the item won't stay young and new forever. Over time, the property will decrease in value. Depreciation is the process of claiming a deduction to compensate you for the property's decrease in value during the year.</p> <p>Note: You can't depreciate your personal residence. You can only depreciate investment property. For more information on the process of depreciation, see IRS Publication 946, <a href="https://www.irs.gov/publications/p946/index.html" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">How To Depreciate Property</a>.</p> <p>Land, of course, doesn't depreciate. But minerals underneath the land do. If you are extracting oil or other minerals, or timber, for that matter, from the land, you will account for the gradual loss in value through a process called <a href="https://www.irs.gov/publications/p535/index.html" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">depletion</a>.</p> <p>Likewise, when you make a purchase of investment real estate or capital equipment with a useful life of longer than a year, the IRS knows you will be using that property to generate income for a long time to come.</p> <p>Except in certain circumstances, the IRS does not allow you to deduct the full cost of your investment in the first year. Instead, you must amortize your investment over a number of years. For real estate, you must spread the deduction out over 27.5 years.</p> <h2>Passive activity rules</h2> <p>Again, these rules are complex. But in a nutshell, if you are a passive investor - meaning you are not working day to day in the business of managing your real estate investments - you are subject to <a href="https://www.irs.gov/publications/p925/index.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">passive activity rules</a>. Basically, you can only deduct passive losses to the extent that you can cancel out gains from passive activities. These rules restrict your ability to use passive activity losses to offset capital gains elsewhere in your portfolio. Congress implemented these rules in 1986 to eliminate tax loopholes and abusive tax shelters.</p> <p>Most individual investor landlords can deduct up to $25,000 per year in losses on rental properties, if necessary (subject to income limitation). Hopefully you won't have to make use of this provision much.</p> <h2>Property taxes</h2> <p>Expect to pay property taxes to local and county governments each year. Your local government will assess the market value of your property at its "highest and best use" and charge you a percentage of that value every year. You can deduct property taxes against your rental income, though, provided the property tax is uniformly assessed throughout the jurisdiction and is not a special assessment.</p> <h2>Other tax deductions</h2> <p>Watch for opportunities to take deductions for these common real estate investment expenses:</p> <ul> <li>Mortgage interest</li> <li>Legal fees related to your investment properties or business</li> <li>Mileage</li> <li>Business use of your home (the home office deduction)</li> <li>Advertising fees</li> </ul> <p>Employees (but if they are working on capital improvements or renovations, you have to amortize their labor costs as part of your capital investment, rather than as a current year expense.)</p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/tax-assessed-value-224771/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">What is Tax Assessed Value, Tax Appraised Value, and Market Assessed Value?</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/updates-increase-your-home-value-218078/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Small Updates, Big Return: 5 Ways to Increase Your Home&#8217;s Value</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/renting-out-your-vacation-home-204821/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Want to Rent Your Vacation Home? Beware These Lender Rules</a></li> </ul> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=kNe5F7F-Ba0:3HriopJY5eI:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=kNe5F7F-Ba0:3HriopJY5eI:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/tax-on-investment-properties-230671/feed/ 0 https://www.zillow.com/blog/tax-on-investment-properties-230671/ 2019-07-11 17:56 +00:00 2019-07-12 05:56 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=230664 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/GOydqpjxogs/ Home Improvement remodeling How to Modernize a Split-Level Home Breathe new life into a dated split-level with these tips - you have more options than you might think! Wed, 10 Jul 2019 22:20:08 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/split-level-remodel-230664/#respond Tim Layton <p>What's not to love about a split-level home? The interior spaces flow. And while the change in floor level creates a partial separation of spaces, they are visually connected from one level to the next. Split-levels are cool - on the inside.</p> <p>The outside is often another story. Split-level exteriors tend to be a bit bland. If you've seen one, you've seen them all. And that&#8217;s probably because so many of them were built during the 1970s. T1-11 siding (plywood sheets with vertical grooves spaced 8 inches apart) is common on the upper levels, and the upper floors tend to be cantilevered out over the structural walls below.</p> <p>Split-level homes can feel dated. But a few simple modifications can transform them, making  them one of the best fixer-upper options.</p> <p>Let's take a look at a few of the primary changes you might make to create a modern masterpiece from the average split-level home.</p> <h2>Split-level remodel: siding</h2> <p>Modern home styles are generally made up of two surface types. The predominant surface is generally smooth and clean. Stucco is the most common material used to achieve this look, and thankfully, it&#8217;s not very difficult to stucco over many existing exterior siding products, such as T1-11. Any split-level modernization project should look very closely at ways to make those exterior walls smooth.</p> <p>The second exterior wall surface, which can make a huge impact and is easily retrofitted, is a natural stone of some sort. Think of Frank Lloyd Wright's Fallingwater, and take note of the contrast between perfectly smooth wall surfaces and the texture of natural stone used intermittently throughout the design. A split-level home already has the structural breaks that make this kind of mix look perfect.</p> <h2>Split-level remodel: windows</h2> <p>Single-hung windows, which feature bottom panes that slide up to open the windows, are common in split-level homes from the &#8217;60s, &#8217;70s and &#8217;80s. And many of them are Colonial style, meaning that they feature grids that divide the window into 12 or more small "lites," rather than larger panes of glass.</p> <p>Replacing old windows with a more modern style can greatly modernize your home's look. Consider casement windows, which feature cranks and swing out to open up. Horizontal sliders can also provide a more modern look. Fixed glass is another very modern type of window, but it won't work for bedrooms that require an emergency escape and ventilation.</p> <h2>Split-level remodel: roof color and material</h2> <p>The roof is an oft-overlooked aspect of a home's exterior, which is surprising given the size of both the visible surface area of the roof and the investment required to have a new one installed. A roof is far more than a utilitarian way to keep precipitation out of the house - it's an important design element that can make or break an exterior remodel.</p> <p>Some roof colors simply won't work with a contemporary design - an old shingle roof usually looks anything but clean and smooth. Dark colors tend to work well with shingle roofs, and the potential to switch to a standing seam metal roof should also be considered.</p> <p>If you want to go full-on modern, consider hiding the roof completely. This may involve a major structural overhaul, but it's worth considering. Always consider even the most extreme ideas if you're planning to be in the home for a long time.</p> <h2>Split-level remodel: exterior lighting</h2> <p>A very simple way of updating the look of a traditional split-level is to add some bling to the design. Exterior accessories such as light fixtures and house numbers can make a huge difference. Modern home designs tend to focus on lighting details. A split-level home has a few great places to start.</p> <ul> <li><strong>The pathway to the front door: </strong>Often sloped to reach the middle level, this pathway could be an ideal place for some interesting lighting.</li> <li><strong>The overhang of the cantilevered second levels:</strong> These existing spaces are great for recessed lighting that illuminates the wall beneath, which you might want to cover in natural stone.</li> <li><strong>Either side of the front entry:</strong> If the home design includes a forward-facing front door or a recessed entryway, some nice modern fixtures on either side can accentuate the welcoming nature of the entry. Larger fixtures are often better here.</li> <li><strong>The garage:</strong> See below about garage doors and consider a translucent door with interior lighting or some wooden doors with accent lighting.</li> </ul> <h2>Split-level remodel: garage doors</h2> <p>If your split-level features garage doors that face the street, they may represent your easiest and best option for modernization. Garage doors are often taken for granted. The original spec was probably a steel door with very little curb appeal. Most of the time, they are downright ugly.</p> <p>But times have changed, and modern garage door designs can transform the look of the front of your home. Doors with glass-like, translucent flat panels are beautiful in daylight and at night, when interior light can turn them into giant night lights - all while obscuring the contents of your garage from neighbors.</p> <p>Another great garage door style on a modern home is a wood-look door. If done properly, this can tie in wonderfully with the natural stone sections of wall mentioned above.</p> <p>These are just a few ideas, and you can use them as a simple spark of design inspiration to get you going. Once you see the possibilities and start looking at the changes that can be made, you'll realize that a split-level may have more potential to look great in decades to come than almost any other old-school design out there.</p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/10-things-must-do-buying-a-home-224314/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">10 Things You Need to Do When Buying A Home</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/live-in-home-before-renovating-64719/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">3 Reasons to Live in a New Home Before Renovating</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/building-backyard-fire-pit-219141/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">DIY Backyard Fire Pit: Build It in Just 7 Easy Steps</a></li> </ul> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=GOydqpjxogs:VyL1nUfp2Wg:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=GOydqpjxogs:VyL1nUfp2Wg:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/split-level-remodel-230664/feed/ 0 https://www.zillow.com/blog/split-level-remodel-230664/ 2019-07-10 22:20 +00:00 2019-07-11 10:20 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=230676 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/OkKA5kGX51w/ Home Improvement DIY home maintenance Sealing and Insulating Your Ductwork Who doesn't want to save money on utility bills? A good place to start is by insulating your ducts. Wed, 10 Jul 2019 17:38:09 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/how-to-insulate-ductwork-230676/#respond Karie Fay <p>Insulation isn't free, but as the old saying goes, sometimes you have to spend some to make some. When it comes to adding duct insulation, your monthly savings in utility bills will soon cover the costs, especially if you install the insulation yourself.</p> <h2>The problem with uninsulated ducts</h2> <p>You need insulation – even around your ducts – no matter where you live. Insulation isn't only about keeping heat in. It also keeps the heat out of the home (or duct).</p> <p>In the average home, around 20% to 30% of the heated or cooled air flowing through the ducts is lost to <a href="https://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?c=home_improvement.hm_improvement_ducts" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">leaks and uninsulated surfaces</a>, according to the Department of Energy. The result is higher utility bills, wear and tear on the heating and cooling system, and difficulty maintaining the temperature inside your home. Additionally, uninsulated ducts can accumulate condensation, which eventually leads to rust. Once the ducts start rusting, you face having to install new ducts.</p> <h2>Evaluating your ducts</h2> <p>First, consider the duct location. The greater the temperature extreme between the air inside the duct and the air surrounding the ductwork, the greater your need for duct insulation.</p> <p>Unfortunately, so many houses - especially newer homes - end up with ductwork running through the attic. Unheated basements, crawl spaces under the home and even garages are also unconditioned (neither heated nor cooled) runs for ductwork.</p> <p>If, on the other hand, your ducts run across the ceiling of a heated basement or inside well-insulated walls and ceilings, your need for duct insulation is minimal. However, if the ducts have a lot of leaks, the air that makes it to your rooms will not be as warm or as cool as intended. So duct loss matters no matter what.</p> <p>Then there's the duct material itself. Most heating and cooling ducts are metal. These are the bulky, gray box-shaped ducts so common everywhere. Sometimes metal ducts are lined with duct liner, a 1-inch-thick fiberglass board that insulates the interior of the duct, rather than the exterior. Duct liner isn't generally a DIY installation, and if your ducts already have liner, you don't need to insulate the exterior.</p> <p>Duct board, much like the duct liner, is also a fiberglass product. Made from 1- to 2-inch-thick sheets of rigid glass fiber and coated with an aluminum laminate for a moisture/air barrier, duct board comes in sections that fit together like metal ducts. Duct board's advantage is that it is already insulated, eliminating the need for further work, as long as it is structurally sound.</p> <p>Another product, known as flex duct, is a round framework of wires coated with fiberglass and encased in either foil or plastic to resist moisture and air leakage. Although flexible ducts don't require further insulation, they are vulnerable to damage, especially punctures. Since they are generally used for short runs, when working on the remainder of your ductwork, check any flex ducts as well.</p> <h2>Types of duct insulation</h2> <p>Once you determine that your duct needs insulation, consider the type of insulation you want. To insulate the exterior, you have a choice between sleeve-style insulation and blanket wraps, which literally wrap around the ductwork.</p> <p>To install sleeves, you must either disassemble the ductwork and slide it on before reassembling the ducts or - as many homeowners find themselves doing - slit it and wrap it around like the blanket-style material. In the end, it's probably best to buy the blanket insulation.</p> <ul> <li><strong>Duct insulation sleeves: </strong>Come in pre-measured lengths. They may have an adhesive strip to make the installation a little easier. Common sleeve materials include foam, bubble wrap and fiberglass, all typically featuring a foil-like outer surface to provide air and moisture resistance. To fit your ducts, simply cut the sleeve to length with a sharp pair of scissors. Like any other insulation, use additional layers to provide better insulation power.</li> </ul> <ul> <li><strong>Foil-backed self-adhesive foam</strong> <strong>duct insulation:</strong> Installs easily and wraps around irregular ductwork areas well. Most brands come in rolls a foot in width and several feet long. While fairly thin, it works well to dampen sound and can be combined with other forms to increase the insulation rating. Best of all, you eliminate the fiberglass in that area of your home. However, never apply just any foam to your ductwork - only formulas designed for the application. Many foam products are highly flammable and toxic when burning.</li> </ul> <ul> <li><strong>Fiberglass and cotton duct insulation:</strong> This type typically includes an aluminum foil backing to repel moisture invasion or air leaks. Available in a variety of thicknesses, rolls are usually a foot wide and several feet long. It's often a cheaper form of insulation, though the end value relies on installing it properly. Fiberglass and cotton are easily cut to size.</li> </ul> <ul> <li><strong>Foil-backed bubble wrap:</strong> May not deliver the insulation power and vapor barrier performance you expect if you opt for a cheaper brand. Another drawback is that as a reflective insulation, you must provide an air gap between the duct and insulation itself. Special spacers are purchased to ensure this gap. Alternatively, you can cut squares of the insulation and line the length of the duct with these squares, tape or glue them in place, then install the insulation. Use enough to ensure the length of outer insulation doesn't touch the duct anywhere. This is quite a hassle, so think carefully before choosing this duct insulation style.</li> </ul> <p>As new and innovative products arise continually, these are by no means the only types of duct insulation available, nor will they remain the main types. When evaluating any type of duct insulation, make note of the installation method, the drawbacks and the advantages, as well as the insulation power, known as the R-value. Talk to others about what works for them and shop around before choosing any insulation for any part of your home.</p> <h2>Considering your insulation R-value</h2> <p>More important than the type of insulation (provided it is installed properly) is the R-value of the insulation you use. R-value is the measure of the ability of the insulation to prevent heat from either penetrating or escaping the object insulated. The higher the R-value (literally meaning resistance value), the better the insulation works. However, there is a ceiling on the effective R-value because, at a certain level, the cost of the material becomes greater than any additional savings.</p> <p>Before selecting your duct insulation, determine the optimum R-value for your region. In general, the colder your climate, the higher the R-value you will need. Even then, different areas of the home may require greater or lesser insulating power. As a rule of thumb, expect to install a minimum of R-5 material. To be precise, consult the Department of Energy's <a href="https://www.energystar.gov/ia/home_improvement/home_sealing/DuctInsulationFS_2005.pdf" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">Duct Insulation R-value Chart</a>.</p> <p>When selecting your duct insulation, use the R-value you require to determine what product - or combination of products - you need. Use more than one layer if a single layer won't give you the value you desire.</p> <h2>Testing and sealing: the critical first steps</h2> <p>Well-meaning homeowners commonly make a couple mistakes when insulating their ducts. First, some don't realize that you can't use paper-backed fiberglass insulation. Perhaps the most commonly used insulation for joists and walls, the fiberglass itself is fine, but it doesn't take much to get the paper hot enough to burn. Never use anything not specifically intended for use with HVAC ductwork.</p> <p>The second mistake is even more common: DIYers often do not understand that they must seal the ducts first. Failing to perform this basic step will undermine your insulating efforts. No matter how well you install the insulation or how high the R-value, even with the moisture/air barrier attached to the exterior of the insulation, it won't prevent air and temperature loss if your ducts aren't structurally sound.</p> <p>Some ducts, depending on the material and the location, are more vulnerable than others when it comes to air loss, but any duct has the potential to leak. With age, house settling, rust from moisture, animal intrusion and a variety of other hazards, your ducts may obtain anything from pinholes to gaping voids, loose and leaking connections between pieces, or even potentially missing ducts. Your joists or wall studs may actually form the "duct" run if a portion of your HVAC ductwork is missing - or the air may simply pour out to the exterior.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter wp-image-230680" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/GettyImages-466593213-17e5f5.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="534" /></p> <p>To ensure you aren't wasting your time, money and insulation, have a duct leak test conducted before sealing the ducts. A professional duct leak test identifies leaks inside your home's ducts. Generally called a duct blower door test, the technician seals the air intake and outlet registers before blowing air through the system. With the aid of specialized tools, the technician can determine the amount of air leaking from your ductwork and where it's occurring. Common problem areas include around the registers and vents, where they enter the room they service, and at each duct joint (connection).</p> <p>Having your ducts tested adds to your expense, of course, with most professional inspections running $100 to $200. Only a professional has the equipment and knowledge required, so it's really not a DIY-friendly task. Still, spending the money will end up paying off in the end.</p> <p>Also, local building codes are gradually beginning to require that new houses have a whole-house and duct blower door test performed. How does this apply to you? At any point that you make any upgrade involving your ducts that requires a building permit, you will have to follow the current code. It's also a good selling point if you ever put your house on the market.</p> <p>To find a professional to perform the work, try your local utility company, HVAC service company or specialized testing companies. The Department of Energy provides excellent tips on <a href="http://energy.gov/energysaver/professional-home-energy-audits" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">choosing your technician</a>. Also look for energy efficiency credits that may be available through the utility company or the state or federal government for testing and insulating your ducts. This may offset your costs significantly.</p> <h2>Sealing and insulating: getting down to work</h2> <p>Some duct testing companies will seal the ducts for you, eliminating leaks and holes, as either part of the service or for an additional fee. Do what you're comfortable with - if you feel confident about doing the sealing yourself, it will be messy.</p> <p>If you decide to proceed without testing your ducts, perform a thorough examination, looking for any rust, holes, severely damaged pieces, loose connections or missing portions, starting at the furnace and air unit and working back to the very last register in the home. Mark problem areas with a marker or chalk. After the inspection, seal your ducts, keeping a few tips in mind:</p> <ul> <li>Start with clean, dry ducts. You don't have to wash them, but wiping them with a damp cloth or whisking them with a broom and making sure the surface is dry will help the sealant-to-duct bond.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Select your desired sealant, or use a combination of products as appropriate. Mastic is the most common sealant, but specially formulated duct sealant, in cans or caulk tubes, is also available. Silicone caulk will work in small areas.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Choose a tape to use with the sealant when necessary. Special foil tapes work well, or select a mastic tape. Never use duct tape - it will not stick for long. In general, only use the tape by itself when you have no other choice. Any tape tends to degrade or peel away with age, while mastic hardens to a stiff, durable surface. When the tape is used with the mastic, however, it works very well.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Spread duct mastic or sealant across the duct seams, joints and very small holes. Follow the product instructions for precise application instructions.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Apply mastic in a layer about as thick as a nickel. An even, generous layer helps ensure your duct will never leak again. Use a stiff-bristled paintbrush or your fingers to spread the sealant. Wear rubber gloves to limit skin contact.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Wear old clothes during application. Mastic and other products may not wash out.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Tape cracks or holes larger than 1/8-inch diameter with the tape selected. Cover with the mastic to create a durable duct patch.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Seal all the duct joints, holes and connections near the furnace. Seal the duct-to-register connection as well. Wherever there's a joint or intrusion, use sealant. Keep in mind that it is better to over-seal than to have a remaining leak.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Work from the furnace or air unit back to the last (farthest) register in the home. This allows you to prioritize your sealing efforts, ensuring the most important areas are covered. Holes, leaks and gaps closer to the HVAC unit encounter higher air pressure than those farther away, so your greatest savings and increase in efficiency will come from sealing well at and near the unit. Leaks also tend to be common close to the blower fan and where the ductwork emerges from the furnace.</li> </ul> <p>After the sealant is dry, the final step is insulating the ducts. The process is simple if you use a wrap-style insulation product. Before beginning, read the product instructions and follow wherever they deviate from general duct insulation guidelines:</p> <ul> <li>Measure and cut your duct insulation a little large to allow overlap at every seam, both lengthwise and on the ends.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Wrap the insulation around the duct, allowing the beginning edge to ride up slightly over the previous piece.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Ensure the material is turned the proper way; the vapor barrier should face out, and the fiberglass or other material should be against the duct.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>First staple, if possible, then tape each seam, both lengthwise and between pieces. When overlapped 2 to 3 inches and secured with tape, each joint should be very secure and leak-free. Use a pressure-sensitive vapor retarder tape designed for ductwork.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Tape any punctures in the insulation's vapor barrier to prevent leaks.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Avoid compressing the insulation. Most insulation relies upon the air space between its fibers to deliver the R-value promised. When insulation is squeezed, flattened or compressed, its R-value drops tremendously. Some compression is unavoidable, such as around bends.</li> </ul> <p>Once your ducts are sealed and insulated, you can have a technician retest your ductwork if you desire. Some companies may offer the "after" test for free. Following these guidelines and installing everything properly guarantees that your second test will blow the first away - pun intended - but better yet, your utility bills will show the difference.</p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=OkKA5kGX51w:lHMbMlanRLI:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=OkKA5kGX51w:lHMbMlanRLI:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/how-to-insulate-ductwork-230676/feed/ 0 https://www.zillow.com/blog/how-to-insulate-ductwork-230676/ 2019-07-10 17:38 +00:00 2019-07-11 05:38 +12:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976515174/comment-loss-ring-fencing-ups-war-on-renters-owners?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Loss+ring-fencing+ups+war+on+renters+%26+owners+ https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976515174/comment-loss-ring-fencing-ups-war-on-renters-owners?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Loss+ring-fencing+ups+war+on+renters+%26+owners+ COMMENT: Loss ring-fencing ups war on renters & owners <p>New rules around the ring-fencing of rental property losses came into force late in June and Stop the War on Tenancies spokesman Mike Butler believes they&rsquo;ll have a negative impact on the rental market...</p> Wed, 10 Jul 2019 10:07:00 +1200 2019-07-10 10:07 +12:00 2019-07-10 10:07 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=224314 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/6tgzTUAkSvw/ Tips & Advice Down payments home buying Mortgages Personal Finance pre-approval 10 Things You Need to Do When Buying A Home Everything you need to know about buying a home - on one index card. Tue, 09 Jul 2019 13:52:18 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/10-things-must-do-buying-a-home-224314/#comments Harold Pollack <p>A home is often the biggest financial investment you'll make in your lifetime. In fact, <a href="https://www.zillow.com/report/2017/homeowners/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">a recent Zillow analysis</a> reports that the typical American homeowner has 40% of their wealth tied up in their home.</p> <p>Several years ago, I wrote <a href="https://www.npr.org/sections/alltechconsidered/2016/01/08/462250239/when-an-index-card-of-financial-tips-isnt-enough-this-book-is-there" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">a complete guide to financial planning</a> on one index card, which <a href="https://www.forbes.com/sites/zackfriedman/2017/03/09/9-money-rules-index-card/#183b35d2c098" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">went viral</a> and later became a book: "<a href="https://www.amazon.com/Index-Card-Personal-Finance-Complicated/dp/0143130528/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">The Index Card: Why Personal Finance Doesn't Have to Be Complicated</a>" (co-written with Helaine Olen).</p> <p>Now, following up on my original index card, I've written a guide on buying a house. Below is the housing index card - a handy resource to print and take with you as you look at houses or think about buying one - plus some additional advice as you contemplate making the big decision.</p> <figure id="attachment_224315" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-224315" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/card-25c05b.jpg" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-224315" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/card-25c05b.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="534" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-224315" class="wp-caption-text">Photo by Harold Pollack.</figcaption></figure> <h2>1. Buy for the long run</h2> <p>A home is a significant investment, not to mention a linchpin of stability. According to the <a href="https://www.zillow.com/report/2017/sellers/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zillow Group Consumer Housing Trends Report 2017</a>, the majority of Americans who sold their homes last year had lived in their home for at least a decade before selling.</p> <p>Some are even staying for the long haul. Almost half (46%) of all homeowners are like me - living in the first home we ever purchased. In short: Buy a home you want to live in for at least five years - one equipped (or ready to be equipped) with the features and space you need, both now and in the future.</p> <h2>2. Buy to improve your life, not speculate with money</h2> <p>Your home is more than a financial investment; it's where you sleep, eat, host friends, raise your children - it's where your life happens.</p> <p>The housing market is too unpredictable to buy a (primary) home purely because you think it will net a big short-term financial return. You will most likely be living in this home for several years, regardless of how it appreciates, so your first priority should be finding a home that will meet your needs and help you build the life you want.</p> <h2>3. Focus on what's important to you</h2> <p>Today's housing market is short on inventory, with <a href="https://www.zillow.com/research/rent-growth-catches-up-to-income-17716/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">10% fewer homes</a> on the market in November 2017 than November 2016.</p> <p>So, focus on finding a home you can afford that meets your needs - but don't get distracted by shiny features that might break your budget. Nice-to-have features often drive up the price tag for things you don't particularly value once the initial enjoyment wears off.</p> <p>Make a list of your basic needs, both for your desired home and for your desired neighborhood. Stick to finding a home that meets these needs, without buying extra stuff that adds up.</p> <h2>4. Set a budget and stick to it</h2> <p>It's important to set a budget early - ideally before you even start looking at homes. In today's market, especially in the more competitive markets, it's incredibly easy to go over budget - <a href="https://www.zillow.com/report/2017/buyers/home-buyers-purchase/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">29%</a> of buyers who purchased last year did.</p> <p>The most common culprit? Location. Zillow's data indicates that urban buyers are significantly more likely to go over budget (42%) than suburban (25%) or rural (20%) buyers.</p> <p>There's nothing inherently wrong with that. Local schools matter, and psychologists tell us that a short commute improves your life. But be realistic about your local market and about yourself. Know what you're willing to compromise on - be it less square footage, home repairs or a different neighborhood.</p> <h2>5. Aim for a 20% down payment</h2> <p>If you can afford it, a 20% down payment is ideal for three reasons:</p> <ul> <li>Buyers who don't put a full 20% down pay a premium, most commonly in the form of <a href="https://www.zillow.com/mortgage-learning/private-mortgage-insurance/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">private mortgage insurance (PMI)</a>. This is less financially punishing than it used to be, given today's low mortgage rates. A monthly mortgage payment (with PMI) may be lower than a monthly rental payment in many markets - but still.</li> <li>Buyers who put more down upfront typically make fewer offers and buy faster than those who put less down. <a href="https://www.zillow.com/research/buyers-lower-payments-make-offers-17009/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zillow research</a> found that buyers with higher down payments make 1.9 offers on average, compared to 2.4 offers for buyers with lower down payments (after controlling for market conditions).</li> <li>A higher down payment reduces your financial risk. You don't want to owe more money than your house is worth if local markets dip when you need to sell.</li> </ul> <h2>6. Keep a six-month strategic reserve</h2> <p>While a down payment is a significant expense, it's also important to build up a strategic reserve and keep it separate from your normal bank account.</p> <p>This reserve should cover six months of living expenses in case you get sick, face an unexpected expense or lose your job. A strategic reserve will not only save you from financial hardship in an emergency but also provide peace of mind.</p> <p>When we accumulated a strategic reserve, my wife and I finally felt ready to build for our future. Without it, we were living from paycheck to paycheck, anxiously managing our cash flow rather than saving or budgeting.</p> <h2>7. Get pre-approved, and stick with a fixed-rate mortgage</h2> <p>The pre-approval process requires organizing all your paperwork; documenting your income, debt and credit; and understanding all the loan options available to you. It's a bit of a pain, but it saves time later. <a href="https://www.zillow.com/pre-approval/#/pre-approval" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Getting pre-approved</a> also shows sellers that you're a reliable buyer with a strong financial footing. Most importantly, it helps you understand what you can afford.</p> <p>There are a variety of <a href="https://www.zillow.com/mortgage-learning/purchasing-your-new-home/mortgage-types/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">mortgage types</a>, and it's important to evaluate all of them to see which is best for your family and financial situation. Those boring 30- and 15-year mortgages offer big advantages.</p> <p>The biggest is locking in your mortgage rate. In short: A 30-year fixed mortgage has a specific fixed rate of interest that doesn't change for 30 years. A 15-year fixed mortgage does the same.</p> <p>These typically have lower rates but higher monthly payments, since you must pay it off in half the time. Conventional fixed-rate mortgages help you manage your household budgeting because you know precisely how much you'll be paying every month for many years. They're simple to understand, and current rates are low.</p> <p>One final advantage is that they don't tempt you with a low initial payment to buy more house than you can afford.</p> <h2>8. Comparison shop to get the best mortgage</h2> <p>Though a home is the biggest purchase many of us will ever make, most home buyers don't <a href="https://www.zillow.com/mortgage-rates/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">shop around for a mortgage</a> (<a href="https://www.zillow.com/report/2017/buyers/money-financing/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">52%</a> consider only a single lender).</p> <p>I certainly didn't. This did save me some annoying calls and hassle, but it cost me $40 or $50 every month, for years. The difference of half a percentage point in your mortgage rate can add up to thousands of dollars over the lifetime of the loan. It's important to evaluate all the available options to make sure you're going with the lender who meets your needs - not just the first one you contact.</p> <p>The three most important factors are that the lender offers a loan program that caters to their specific needs (76%), has the most competitive rates (74%) and has a history of closing on time (63%).</p> <h2>9. Spend no more than a third of your after-tax income</h2> <p>It's better to regret spending too little on your home than spending too much. One-third of your after-tax income is a manageable amount. This isn't always possible if you live in a place like San Francisco or New York, but it's still a good yardstick for where to be.</p> <h2>10. Be willing to walk away</h2> <p>Buying a home is a time-consuming, stressful but ultimately rewarding endeavor - if you end up closing on a home that meets your needs. But it's important to manage your expectations in case you don't immediately find a home you can afford with the features you need.</p> <p>Always be prepared to walk away if the sellers don't accept your offer, the home doesn't pass a rigorous inspection or the timing isn't right. Hold fast to your list of must-haves, stick to what you can afford and don't overreach or settle.</p> <p>It's no tragedy to miss out on any particular house. Remember that you're playing the long game. You want to be happy 10 years from now.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/mortgage-learning/first-time-homebuyer-mistakes/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">6 First-Time Homebuyer Mistakes to Avoid</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/mortgage-learning/20-percent-down-payment/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Why Is 20% Ideal for a Down Payment?</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/resolutions-can-help-buy-home-2018-224008/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">5 New Year&#8217;s Resolutions That Can Help You Buy a Home in 2018</a></li> </ul> <p><em>Originally published January 2018.</em></p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=6tgzTUAkSvw:yb1E_Du_UIQ:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=6tgzTUAkSvw:yb1E_Du_UIQ:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/10-things-must-do-buying-a-home-224314/feed/ 17 https://www.zillow.com/blog/10-things-must-do-buying-a-home-224314/ 2019-07-09 13:52 +00:00 2019-07-10 01:52 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=230712 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/hVNMXiZRaFg/ Home Improvement DIY remodeling How to Bleach Hardwood Floors Whether you need to remove a stain or refresh the space, bleaching hardwood can get you results. Sat, 06 Jul 2019 23:56:20 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/bleaching-hardwood-floors-230712/#comments Karie Fay <p>Bleaching hardwood floors is a chemical process to lighten the color of the wood. Sometimes your hardwood floors become discolored with age or accidental stains. Occasionally, homeowners choose to lighten their floors in preparation for special finishes, such as antiquing or pickling.</p> <p>Learn how to bleach your hardwood floors, including what type of bleach to use, to get the job done correctly.</p> <h2>Types of wood bleach</h2> <p>There are three types of bleach you can use on wood: chlorine bleach, "two-part" (peroxide) bleaches and oxalic acid. Not all bleaches are interchangeable. The best bleach for your floor depends on the source of color you seek to remove. The challenge, then, is to know what made the stain and which bleach is appropriate.</p> <ul> <li><strong>Chlorine bleach</strong>: Just like in the laundry room, chlorine bleach will remove dyes and many organic stains such as tea, blood, berry-based juices and other foods. Using household bleach is the mildest form and may take several treatments to prove effective. For a stronger chlorine-based bleach treatment, choose swimming pool chlorine (calcium hypochlorite). Purchase swimming pool chlorine at a local superstore or swimming pool supply.</li> <li><strong>Two-part bleaches</strong>: While chlorine bleach combats many inks, dyes and organic stains, it doesn't significantly alter the wood color. A two-part bleach is the only choice for altering wood color. Some stains that do not respond to either oxalic or chlorine bleaches will disappear when treated with two-part bleaches. Look for this type of bleach at your local hardware or home improvement store.</li> <li><strong>Oxalic acid</strong>: Nothing combats iron and rust stains like oxalic acid. It also removes water stains (which arise due to the iron content of water) and some black inks that are iron-based, although it's not effective against carbon-based India ink. Even pet urine stains may respond to oxalic acid. You can purchase oxalic acid in a crystal form at pharmacies and hardware or home improvement stores, as well as other sources. Use pure oxalic acid for best results.</li> </ul> <p>Occasionally, you may find reference to other bleaching solutions. Chlorinated lime bleaching, for instance, is often used for walnut in particular. Permanganate of potash, on the other hand, creates a bleach that leaves a residual purple tint. Both of these chemicals are readily available online and from local stores or pharmacies. Simply dissolve the chemicals in water, creating a strong solution. Paint on, wait for the solution to work, and neutralize as you would with any other bleach.</p> <h2>Bleach application and safety guidelines</h2> <p>Before applying any bleaching agent to your hardwood floors, consider the size of the area you wish to bleach and the condition of your floor, along with the nature of the bleach itself. Any bleach will deteriorate the wood slightly. The chemically weakened wood fibers are more susceptible to wear and tear from foot traffic. For this reason, many professionals discourage bleaching wood floors.</p> <p>Bleaching stains isn't as destructive as bleaching the entire floor to remove wood color, since it involves a limited area. It's also much easier: You must remove the finish - either with a stripper or by sanding - before applying wood bleach.</p> <p>When spot-bleaching your hardwood floor, you may be able to remove the finish only in the affected area, bleach and neutralize the treatment, then refinish the surface and blend it in with the surrounding floor - provided you have matching finish products.</p> <p>For extensive stains, or if you're unable to match the finish, you may choose to strip the entire floor before bleaching.</p> <p>Here are some other application and safety tips to consider:</p> <ul> <li>Some stains and marks lend character to the floor. Think before using bleach as a stain remover: Is the stain bad enough that you want to subject your floor to bleach?</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Is there an out-of-the-way area where you can test the bleach's effect on your hardwood floor? If you wish to bleach your entire floor, try it first on a spare board.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Consider sanding to remove the existing finish. Sanding the wood has one particular advantage: It allows you to possibly sand away the stain, if it isn't very deep, instead of applying harsh bleaching agents.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Redwood, cedar, cherry and rosewood don't bleach well. Some of the more exotic woods, such as mahogany, are prized for their color and aren't considered suitable for bleaching. Avoid bleaching white oak as well. It has a tendency to discolor when bleached and may leave you dissatisfied with the appearance.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Use the least amount of bleach possible, whether bleaching the wood or treating a stain. Some woods react poorly to over-bleaching. Walnut, for instance, will attain a green haze.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>When using a commercial bleaching product, follow the product manufacturer's instructions carefully for safety and best results.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Always wear safety glasses and rubber gloves when working with bleaching products. Any bleach is extremely caustic and may burn your skin, blind your eyes or damage your lungs. Use with extreme caution.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Ventilate your workspace. Keep windows open, fans running, and pets and children away from the area.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Wear a dust mask or respirator when sanding bleached wood or working with dry bleach chemicals.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Pour a bit of the neutralizer (see information below) suited to your bleach in a small bowl or bucket. Place it near your work area and use immediately if you notice you have spilled or splattered bleach on yourself.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Don't cross-contaminate brushes, rags and other applicators. Wash immediately or dispose of properly after use.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Wash your hands and arms after working with bleach and before doing anything else.</li> </ul> <h2>How to strip, bleach and neutralize your floor</h2> <p>If you're lucky, you know exactly what made the stain and which bleach to use as a result. In some cases, finding the right bleach is more a process of elimination.</p> <p>Start with chlorine bleach and progress to oxalic acid if necessary. If your wood is finished, you'll have to strip your wood and then neutralize the bleach.</p> <p>Here's how to strip, bleach and neutralize your hardwood floor:</p> <ul> <li>Remove the existing finish, using the appropriate product: Lacquer thinner dissolves lacquer finishes (commonly used on modern wood floors), while denatured alcohol removes shellac. A commercial paint-and-varnish remover will work on most other finishes. Either brush on the product or lay a thick layer of paper towels or rags across the area and pour on enough product to saturate the cloths. Wait for the finish to dissolve the wipe away as it softens. Use a plastic spatula or wood scraper as necessary, taking care to avoid gouging the wood.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Follow with sandpaper to lightly smooth the surface and remove any remaining finish. Start with 80-grit sandpaper and end with 120-grit.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Mix a solution of washing soda - sometimes called sal soda - with hot water in a small bucket. Follow the ratio recommended in the product instructions (purchase washing soda in the laundry aisle of your big box store). Wash over the stripped wood with the solution to remove stripping chemicals and other contaminants. Air-dry before bleaching.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Prepare the bleach of your choice. For chlorine bleach, use either a full-strength or half-and-half solution of laundry bleach mixed with hot water (or swimming pool bleach dissolved in hot water), until the solution is completely saturated. To mix oxalic acid, start with about 8 ounces of oxalic acid crystals dissolved in 2 quarts of hot water. Continue adding until the solution is saturated and won't accept more crystals. For two-part bleaches, follow the product instructions, mixing parts A and B as necessary.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Use a synthetic-bristled brush to apply the bleach. Avoid natural bristles, which may dissolve, or metal materials, which will create a chemical reaction with the bleach. Spread a consistent layer of bleach across the wood. Place a paper towel over top to keep it from drying too fast in warm conditions. Wait 20 to 30 minutes, or as instructed by the two-part bleach product, before testing the wood color. When the color matches your expectations, blot up any remaining bleach.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Flush the area with distilled water to rinse away excess bleach. Using distilled water prevents water stains caused by the iron in regular water. Prevent the rinse water from invading the surrounding finished floor surface.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Neutralize the bleached area to stop the bleaching action. For chlorine or two-part bleaches, use a blend of half hot water and half white vinegar. Oxalic acid requires a mixture of 2 tablespoons of baking soda dissolved per quart of hot water.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Allow the wood to air-dry at least 24 hours. Follow with another sanding, using 120-grit sandpaper to smooth the wood fibers, which are rough after bleaching. Alternatively, coat the wood with a light coat of lacquer and sand through that instead. The lacquer stiffens the wood and helps the sanding.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Refinish the bleached spot - or the entire floor - as desired.</li> </ul> <p>In some cases, the stain or color may not lift. Feel free to try successive bleach treatments, but at some point you may need to settle for what you achieve. Consider alternatives to bleaching when the results are less than what you prefer.</p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/split-level-remodel-230664/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">How to Modernize a Split-Level Home</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/over-improving-228853/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Are You Overimproving for Your Neighborhood?</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/quiz-renovate-home-or-sell-225199/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Quiz: Should You Renovate Your Home or Sell?</a></li> </ul> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=hVNMXiZRaFg:3u4XwPfvOEs:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=hVNMXiZRaFg:3u4XwPfvOEs:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/bleaching-hardwood-floors-230712/feed/ 2 https://www.zillow.com/blog/bleaching-hardwood-floors-230712/ 2019-07-06 23:56 +00:00 2019-07-07 11:56 +12:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976515136/comment-the-sound-of-one-hand-clapping?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+The+Sound+of+One+Hand+Clapping https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976515136/comment-the-sound-of-one-hand-clapping?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+The+Sound+of+One+Hand+Clapping COMMENT: The Sound of One Hand Clapping <p>Two of our Lords and Masters have recently been laid low yet landlords are still treated as the problem rather than part of the solution, argues Auckland Property Investors Association vice president Peter Lewis&hellip;</p> Tue, 02 Jul 2019 10:43:00 +1200 2019-07-02 10:43 +12:00 2019-07-02 10:43 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=230700 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/H5ldkkN5w70/ Tips & Advice home buying Home selling legal issues real estate agents Is a Dual Agency Relationship Risky? Can one agent represent both parties? The answer: It depends. Mon, 01 Jul 2019 22:21:16 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/dual-agency-in-real-estate-230700/#respond Zillow <p>Buyers and sellers sometimes have the option of entering into a dual agency relationship with their real estate agent. Although this is not necessarily a problem, you should be aware of exactly what a dual real estate agency means and the restrictions it can place on your agent.</p> <h2>What is a dual real estate agency?</h2> <p>The term "agency" refers to the relationship that you, as a buyer or seller, have with your real estate agent. Dual agencies can occur with two agents or with a single agent.</p> <p>A dual agency with two agents can occur when the buyer's agent and the seller's agent are licensed under the same broker.</p> <p>In a dual agency with a single agent, potential buyers may ask a seller's real estate agent to submit an offer on their behalf. In this case, the agent is acting as a dual agent.</p> <h2>Dual real estate agency disclosure</h2> <p>Because dual agencies represent a conflict of interest for the buyer and seller, some states don't allow them.</p> <p>In states where dual agencies are legal, however, the law requires that a dual real estate agent inform both the buyer and seller of a dual real estate agency. These two parties must also sign consent forms indicating that they understand the concept of dual agency, as well as the restrictions imposed on the real estate agent by this type of agreement.</p> <p>If either the buyer or the seller refuses to sign the dual agency agreement, the transaction cannot continue. Once the dual agency agreement is executed, the real estate agent becomes known as the disclosed dual agent.</p> <h2>Disadvantages of dual agencies</h2> <p>Dual agency imposes some restrictions on a real estate agent. The agent is required to treat both buyer and seller with fairness and honesty.</p> <p>The agent is required to provide full disclosure concerning the property to the buyer, but they cannot reveal confidential information about the seller. When the time comes to <a href="https://www.zillow.com/home-buying-guide/making-an-offer-on-a-house/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">make an offer,</a> a dual real estate agent cannot advise the buyer on how much to offer, nor can they advise the seller to accept or reject an offer.</p> <p>In a New York Department of State memo, consumers are advised to be wary of dual agency relationships. The memo states that when a person enters into a dual agency relationship, they are forfeiting their right to that agent's loyalty. The agent then cannot advance the interests of either party.</p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/sellers-guide/real-estate-agent-contract-with-seller/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Types of Listing Agreements: Understanding Real Estate Agent Contracts With Sellers</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/break-up-real-estate-agent-74089/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">How to Break Up With Your Real Estate Agent</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/real-estate-lingo-and-acronyms-230688/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Say What? Home-Buying Lingo You Should Know</a></li> </ul> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=H5ldkkN5w70:MK8pfWHrqXY:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=H5ldkkN5w70:MK8pfWHrqXY:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/dual-agency-in-real-estate-230700/feed/ 0 https://www.zillow.com/blog/dual-agency-in-real-estate-230700/ 2019-07-01 22:21 +00:00 2019-07-02 10:21 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=230614 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/9yv7t6AIwfI/ Market Trends Your Zestimate Is Now Smarter - and More Accurate Zillow's signature home valuation tool - the Zestimate - just got an upgrade. Thu, 27 Jun 2019 04:00:42 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/zestimate-updates-230614/#comments Zillow <p>The Zestimate is now more accurate than ever, thanks to new technology that identifies and values home improvements you've made based on photos. Plus, we now incorporate even more data into Zestimates for homes on the market, and we update those Zestimates in real time. That's in addition to the millions of data points that the Zestimate's complex machine learning models examine for more than 100 million homes across the country.</p> <p>Here's the rundown of what's new.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/rLvvsag2KDs" width="560" height="315" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <h2>'Seeing' your home features</h2> <p>We can evaluate photos of a home to, in a sense, "see" and value the home features you're most proud of. Think of the bathroom you remodeled, the new quartz countertops in your kitchen or the beautifully landscaped backyard. Those features now factor directly into your home's Zestimate, making it the first time the Zestimate can understand not just a home's facts and figures, like number of bathrooms or bedrooms, but also its quality and curb appeal.</p> <p>We heard from homeowners over the years that when it comes time to sell, they want to make sure all the work they've put toward upgrading it is reflected in its Zestimate. Yet before recent advances in technology, there was no way for computers to look at photos of a home and get the same information that people do. The Zestimate now incorporates advanced technologies that make this possible.</p> <p>Homeowners can <a href="https://www.zillow.com/sellerlanding/claimyourhome/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">claim their home on Zillow</a> to edit, add or remove photos at any time in just a few simple clicks.</p> <h2>Listing info added in real time</h2> <p>On homes listed for sale, the Zestimate now incorporates data from the home's listing itself - including listing price and how long it has been on the market - in its calculations. These factors provide important insight into a homeowner and agent's listing strategy and what the homeowner believes their home is worth, both key variables in how much a home ultimately sells for.</p> <p>To top it off, Zestimates on for-sale homes update with new information in real time. That means home shoppers get an up-to-the-second snapshot of what's going on in the local housing market. When the Zestimate launched in 2006, it was updated monthly, so this is a big leap forward as both buyers and sellers navigate dynamic and ever-changing housing markets.</p> <p>The results of all these upgrades? The Zestimate's error rate on homes listed for sale is now less than 2%, meaning half of all Zestimates fall within 2% of the home's eventual sale price.</p> <p>Just as you look for new ways to refresh your home, we're always working to improve the Zestimate. This most recent <a href="https://www.zillow.com/zestimate/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zestimate refresh</a> is another milestone along that journey, all to provide a more accurate look at the value of the place you call home.</p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=9yv7t6AIwfI:ZXpotLmQ-dQ:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=9yv7t6AIwfI:ZXpotLmQ-dQ:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/zestimate-updates-230614/feed/ 15 https://www.zillow.com/blog/zestimate-updates-230614/ 2019-06-27 04:00 +00:00 2019-06-27 16:00 +12:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976515099/comment-the-compliance-struggle?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+The+compliance+struggle https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976515099/comment-the-compliance-struggle?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+The+compliance+struggle COMMENT: The compliance struggle <p>For many property investors, the end goal is setting themselves up for retirement &ndash; but new requirements are making that harder. Investor Dale Young explains how his retirement project is turning into a compliance nightmare...</p> Wed, 26 Jun 2019 07:17:00 +1200 2019-06-26 07:17 +12:00 2019-06-26 07:17 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=199611 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/C01u6GryY40/ Home Improvement decorating Renting Creative Ways to Add Color to Your Rental Can't paint the walls? No problem. These pops of color require no landlord approval. Mon, 24 Jun 2019 13:15:10 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/bring-color-to-rental-199611/#comments Erica Sooter <p>Living in a rental can dampen your design options. With unchangeable fixtures and cabinets, bland paint colors, and the threat of losing your security deposit if you make changes, a lot of renters suppress their personal style and settle for builder-grade basic.</p> <p>But it doesn&#8217;t have to be this way. By getting creative with your furniture and accessories, you can have a colorful and inviting home without sacrificing your deposit or infuriating your landlord.</p> <h2>Wall to wall</h2> <p>Many homeowners paint the walls as a relatively easy way to bring color to a space. But landlords and property managers often forbid changing a rental&#8217;s interior paint color.</p> <p>Think beyond paint, and you&#8217;ll discover a multitude of ways to dress up your walls without touching a paintbrush. The key is to think big.</p> <p>Find large-scale art pieces that speak to your style and feature punchy colors. Collect snapshots in ombre frames of your favorite hue (instead of traditional black or white) and assemble a gallery wall.</p> <p>Have an artistic streak? Paint a mural on a large piece of canvas and tack it over an entire wall.</p> <p>For the less artistically inclined, removable wallpaper or decals in bright shades and eye-catching designs provide an instant pick-me-up. You can also cover entire walls or awkward spaces with a pretty patterned curtain or piece of fabric for a cozy bohemian vibe.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter wp-image-230603" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/GettyImages-1130967710-0e202d.jpg" alt="" width="801" height="534" /></p> <h2>Punch it up</h2> <p>Rentals often come with outdated cabinets, fixtures, and flooring that can&#8217;t be altered. Beige, brown and off-white are the norm for these spaces, but that doesn&#8217;t mean you have to let it restrict your style.</p> <p>Add visual interest and draw attention by bringing in splashy pieces of furniture and decor. Look for pieces in your favorite color or choose a theme, like sunny yellow and coral, to drown out the drab.</p> <p>Vibrant painted wood chairs can give your dining space some zing. Or purchase a couch or chair in a daring tone like emerald or sapphire.</p> <p>Don&#8217;t have a ton of cash to spend? Go DIY. Find furniture with good bones at your local thrift shop or garage sale, and give it a makeover. Use spray paint for smaller decor pieces and latex or chalk paint for dressers and side tables.</p> <p>Add extra flair with stenciled details and paint-dipped legs. Line the backs of bookshelves with decorative paper, and temporarily replace boring kitchen and bathroom pulls and knobs with vibrant versions.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter wp-image-230601" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/GettyImages-1153440193-faea6b.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="534" /></p> <h2>Soft goods, bold tones</h2> <p>Textiles in assorted colors will be your best friends for dressing up your outdated or dull apartment. Start with an inviting rug in a rich jewel tone or a trendy overdyed hue. And stay away from traditional white and beige curtains - instead, opt for a bright color or lively pattern.</p> <p>The same goes for bedding. White may be a traditional go-to for duvet covers, but in the case of a blah apartment, pick a print or hue that will make your bedroom an energizing getaway or relaxing retreat. If you&#8217;re looking for a calm feel, search for a bed set in cool indigo, lavender or sage. Want to make it upbeat instead? Try poppy colors like coral, tangerine or sunflower.</p> <p>Fun throw pillows and blankets will spice up your bed, couch, lounge chairs and more. Keep the color trend going into the bathroom and kitchen by choosing pretty hand towels and bathmats.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter wp-image-230602" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/GettyImages-1056285336-ee0d54.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="534" /></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <h2>Make it yours</h2> <p>By punching up the walls with custom artwork, bringing in attention-grabbing furniture, and using pretty textiles to boost the style factor, you can have a colorfully custom home without ever touching a drop of paint.</p> <p>The key is moderation and intention. Stick with a few favorite shades and mix it up by using variations of those hues instead of pulling in every color in the rainbow. Choose a few important focal points to infuse with color and let the rest blend in.</p> <p>You&#8217;ll be happier for the design boost, and your landlord will be glad you haven&#8217;t made any big changes. That&#8217;s a win-win situation for everyone involved.</p> <h6></h6> <p><strong>Related</strong>:</p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/what-to-unpack-first-191909/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">What to Unpack First in Your New Home</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/3-myths-renting-201963/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">&#8216;You&#8217;re Throwing Money Away&#8217; and Other Myths About Renting</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/get-your-security-deposit-back-210363/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">10 Ways to Make Sure You Get Your Security Deposit Back</a></li> </ul> <p><em>Originally published June 13, 2016.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=C01u6GryY40:PtdSdf9X4c4:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=C01u6GryY40:PtdSdf9X4c4:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/bring-color-to-rental-199611/feed/ 4 https://www.zillow.com/blog/bring-color-to-rental-199611/ 2019-06-24 13:15 +00:00 2019-06-25 01:15 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=230583 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/dXPwkVSHNlk/ Home Improvement decorating furniture Boho and Minimalism Top Our List of 2019 Outdoor Living Trends In with minimalism, out with rustic farmhouse. See what trends are heating up patios this summer. Fri, 21 Jun 2019 22:33:58 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/2019-outdoor-living-trends-230583/#comments Zillow <p>It's easier than ever to create an outdoor oasis that's an extension of your home, and this summer's biggest trend is creating a backyard space that is as comfortable as your indoor one. Design styles like bright and bold boho and Scandinavian minimalism are heading outside, according to our 2019 Outdoor Living Trends Report.</p> <p>&#8220;The lines have been blurred between what's indoor-only and what you can use outside, which means it's never been easier to create an outdoor space that's cohesive with your indoor design," says Kerrie Kelly, design expert and founder of Kerrie Kelly Design Lab.</p> <p>Here&#8217;s her rundown of this year&#8217;s five hottest outdoor trends:</p> <h2>1. Mixed materials</h2> <p>This summer, design elements that were once considered indoor use only - brass, rope, textured upholstery and webbing - are combining in new, unexpected ways for outdoor spaces. Chandeliers, soft rugs and cozy floor cushions are now popular for outside, and new fabric options now include outdoor-safe velvets, leathers and nubby chenilles.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter wp-image-230586" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/1-3605f6.jpg" alt="" width="650" height="902" /></p> <h2>2. Minimalism to the max</h2> <p>Scandinavian minimalist design is now showing up in outdoor furnishings. Lounge chairs, love seats and bistro tables are trending this summer in lightweight, powder-coated aluminum. Finish the look with neutrals like black, white and gray, or mix-and-match with a natural material like teak.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter wp-image-230587" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/2-685706.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="595" /></p> <h2>3. Some like it hot</h2> <p>This summer it's all about elevated outdoor spaces that feel as stylish, comfortable and functional as interiors - with all the amenities. Fire features and outdoor kitchens continue to be extremely popular, providing a sense of "indoor cozy." Beyond adding ambiance, <a href="http://zillow.mediaroom.com/2019-04-04-Homes-with-Chef-Inspired-Kitchen-Features-Sell-for-Up-to-34-Percent-More-Yet-Millennial-Buyers-Pay-Premiums-for-Pizza-and-Wine" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zillow research</a> found home listings mentioning outdoor kitchens and outdoor fireplaces sold for significantly more than expected.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter wp-image-230588" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/3-0159f7.jpg" alt="" width="650" height="958" /></p> <h2>4. Pops of color</h2> <p>Splashes of bold color are brightening up neutral upholstered furnishings. This summer's top color trend of citrus-bright oranges, reds, yellows and pinks are lively and vibrant outside. Think about adding a touch of Living Coral, Pantone&#8217;s Color of the Year, or play with newly trending emerald green in your accessories.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter wp-image-230589" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/4-6e71d4.jpg" alt="" width="799" height="514" /></p> <h2>5. Go green outside</h2> <p>Eco-conscious landscaping, outdoor furnishings and fixtures have gained traction this year. Living walls make a design statement and reduce your carbon footprint, and solar-powered LED accent lights provide upgraded illumination without complex wiring or tricky installation. When it comes time to sell, listings mentioning outdoor lighting were associated with homes selling for <a href="http://zillow.mediaroom.com/2019-04-04-Homes-with-Chef-Inspired-Kitchen-Features-Sell-for-Up-to-34-Percent-More-Yet-Millennial-Buyers-Pay-Premiums-for-Pizza-and-Wine" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">19% more than expected</a>.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter wp-image-230590" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/5-472b9a.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="548" /></p> <h2>Outdoor trends to leave behind in 2019</h2> <h3>Matching patio sets</h3> <p>With more options than ever, there's no need to rely on matching patio sets for a pulled-together look. Instead, curated, eclectic outdoor spaces continue to rise in popularity. Own a patio set? Add mix-and-match, multi-patterned outdoor pillows, a textured ottoman and a vintage rattan side table for a unique look.</p> <h3>Rustic farmhouse</h3> <p>Weathered barnwood dining tables and industrial metal chairs are getting a 2019 makeover with a sleeker combination of teak and aluminum. Take your existing farm table and give it an upgrade with a set of bright, cheery mesh aluminum dining chairs.</p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/solariums-and-sun-rooms-212435/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Spectacular Solariums and Sun Rooms Let in the Light</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/quiz-which-perfect-pool-is-cool-for-the-summer-227324/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Quiz: Which Perfect Pool Is Cool for the Summer?</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/summer-smackdown-which-home-is-your-favorite-230460/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Summer Smackdown: Which Home Is Your Favorite?</a></li> </ul> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=dXPwkVSHNlk:vQ2ry3l8rOw:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=dXPwkVSHNlk:vQ2ry3l8rOw:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/2019-outdoor-living-trends-230583/feed/ 15 https://www.zillow.com/blog/2019-outdoor-living-trends-230583/ 2019-06-21 22:33 +00:00 2019-06-22 10:33 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=212435 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/SeA5BpP9iQ4/ Home Improvement decorating Solariums Sun rooms Spectacular Solariums and Sun Rooms Let in the Light Summon the sun indoors with these gorgeous light-filled spaces. Fri, 21 Jun 2019 21:11:38 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/solariums-and-sun-rooms-212435/#comments Kerrie Kelly <p>Sun rooms, solariums, skylights - oh my! While the terminology can be confusing, these rooms designed to offer indoor sunbathing have similar qualities and suit any type of home environment.</p> <p>If your climate doesn&#8217;t offer year-round sun, you can still enjoy the outdoors by adding a sun room or solarium addition to your space.</p> <h2>What&#8217;s the difference?</h2> <p>A <strong>sun room</strong> is a home addition made completely of windows, which offer a 360-degree view of the outdoor scenery without stepping foot outside.</p> <p>The term &#8220;sun room&#8221; usually means a room made of glass, and it&#8217;s commonly interchanged with conservatory, solarium, greenhouse and atrium, among others. Technically, a sun room is any large room that allows the light to pour in through large windows or glass walls.</p> <p>A <strong>solarium</strong>, on the other hand, is a more specifically designed room. To be considered a solarium, the space must also have a glass roof in addition to a wall of windows or glass.</p> <p>Traditionally, solariums were built as part of hospitals to allow patients to soak up the sun without being exposed to the outdoor elements. Solariums can be attached to the home or stand as a separate structure altogether.</p> <p>Check out these gorgeous sun rooms and solariums, and get inspired for a sunny space of your own.</p> <h2>Verdant sunlight</h2> <p>This sun room lets the light pour in for the plants while still maintaining a homey charm. The wooden ceiling and leafy plants complement the tranquil view outside, making it perfect for afternoon tea or family game night.</p> <figure id="attachment_230579" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-230579" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/2841-Gilmore-Ave-Des-Moines-IA-50312/794437_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-230579" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/sunroom3-04cf5c.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="580" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-230579" class="wp-caption-text">Photo from <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/2841-Gilmore-Ave-Des-Moines-IA-50312/794437_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zillow listing.</a></figcaption></figure> <h2>Sunny dip with a view</h2> <p>This palatial Sarasota, Florida, solarium houses a pool you can swim in while enjoying views of the nearby lake. The iron frame and tinted glass allow the homeowners to enjoy the sun but avoid harmful rays and heat.</p> <figure id="attachment_230576" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-230576" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/3702-Beneva-Oaks-Blvd-Sarasota-FL-34238/47513862_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-230576" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/solarium-88c257.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="532" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-230576" class="wp-caption-text">Photo from <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/3702-Beneva-Oaks-Blvd-Sarasota-FL-34238/47513862_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zillow listing.</a></figcaption></figure> <h2>Dining <em>almost</em> al fresco</h2> <p>This sun room serves as a light-drenched dining room, featuring garden views and easy patio access. Day or night, hot or cold, this multipurpose room is ideal for a quiet meal at home or an intimate gathering with friends.</p> <figure id="attachment_230575" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-230575" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/135-Pacific-Ave-Pacific-Grove-CA-93950/19323475_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-230575" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/sunroom2-db3dc1.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="534" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-230575" class="wp-caption-text">Photo from <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/135-Pacific-Ave-Pacific-Grove-CA-93950/19323475_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zillow listing.</a></figcaption></figure> <h2>Room with a view</h2> <p>Boasting sky-high views and traditional architecture, this solarium in <a href="https://www.zillow.com/friday-harbor-wa/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Friday Harbor, Washington</a>, shows how outside structures can flow seamlessly to the indoor space. With area rugs and overhead lighting, the solarium feels like a light and bright living room.</p> <figure id="attachment_212478" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-212478" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/1566-Mitchell-Bay-Rd-Friday-Harbor-WA-98250/99397867_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-212478 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/4-921052.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-212478" class="wp-caption-text">Photo from <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/1566-Mitchell-Bay-Rd-Friday-Harbor-WA-98250/99397867_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zillow listing</a>.</figcaption></figure> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/quiz-which-perfect-pool-is-cool-for-the-summer-227324/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Quiz: Which Perfect Pool Is Cool for the Summer?</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/9-homes-with-dreamy-spots-for-april-showers-230325/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">9 Homes With Dreamy Spots for April Showers</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/fire-pits-fireplaces-226493/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Quiz: Which Summer Space Melts Your Heart?</a></li> </ul> <p><em>Originally published March 2017. Updated June 2019.</em></p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=SeA5BpP9iQ4:8SUTQ1VX_2w:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=SeA5BpP9iQ4:8SUTQ1VX_2w:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/solariums-and-sun-rooms-212435/feed/ 19 https://www.zillow.com/blog/solariums-and-sun-rooms-212435/ 2019-06-21 21:11 +00:00 2019-06-22 09:11 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=230542 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/bPJocShLc6g/ Unique Homes 10 Homes Saluting the Red, White & Blue Cue the fireworks! These patriotic properties will get you in the Independence Day spirit. Tue, 18 Jun 2019 22:51:27 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/10-homes-saluting-the-red-white-blue-230542/#comments Zillow <p>You see plenty of red, white and blue on July 4th, but these 10 American homes sport the star-spangled colors of Old Glory year-round. Take a trip around the country and peruse some of these patriotic homes.</p> <h2>Portland, Oregon</h2> <figure id="attachment_230550" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-230550" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/4541-NE-22nd-Ave-Portland-OR-97211/53976948_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-230550" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/portland-66e66b.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="573" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-230550" class="wp-caption-text">Photo from <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/4541-NE-22nd-Ave-Portland-OR-97211/53976948_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zillow listing</a>.</figcaption></figure> <h2>San Francisco, California</h2> <figure id="attachment_230553" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-230553" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/2611-20th-Ave-San-Francisco-CA-94116/15125364_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-230553" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/sanfran-0cca68.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="590" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-230553" class="wp-caption-text">Photo from <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/2611-20th-Ave-San-Francisco-CA-94116/15125364_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zillow listing</a>.</figcaption></figure> <h2>Charleston, South Carolina</h2> <figure id="attachment_230547" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-230547" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/719-Windward-Rd-Charleston-SC-29412/10900961_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-230547" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/charleston-3183d1.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="448" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-230547" class="wp-caption-text">Photo from <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/719-Windward-Rd-Charleston-SC-29412/10900961_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zillow listing</a>.</figcaption></figure> <h2>Washington, D.C.</h2> <figure id="attachment_230554" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-230554" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/718-19th-St-NE-Washington-DC-20002/68071538_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-230554" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/washdc-05de8a.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="901" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-230554" class="wp-caption-text">Photo from <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/718-19th-St-NE-Washington-DC-20002/68071538_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zillow listing</a>.</figcaption></figure> <h2>Providence, Rhode Island</h2> <figure id="attachment_230551" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-230551" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/32-Jenkins-St-Providence-RI-02906/65889868_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-230551" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/providence-ae8855.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="530" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-230551" class="wp-caption-text">Photo from <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/32-Jenkins-St-Providence-RI-02906/65889868_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zillow listing</a>.</figcaption></figure> <h2>Boise, Idaho</h2> <figure id="attachment_230610" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-230610" style="width: 801px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/825-N-12th-St-Boise-ID-83702/239899299_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-230610" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/boise-a7e5e2.jpg" alt="" width="801" height="530" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-230610" class="wp-caption-text">Photo from <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/825-N-12th-St-Boise-ID-83702/239899299_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zillow listing.</a></figcaption></figure> <h2>New Orleans, Louisiana</h2> <figure id="attachment_230549" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-230549" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/621-Homer-St-New-Orleans-LA-70114/84472201_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-230549" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/nola-5e60a0.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="558" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-230549" class="wp-caption-text">Photo from <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/621-Homer-St-New-Orleans-LA-70114/84472201_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zillow listing</a>.</figcaption></figure> <p>&nbsp;</p> <h2>Boston, Massachusetts</h2> <figure id="attachment_230546" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-230546" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/34-Hillsdale-St-Boston-MA-02124/59118450_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-230546" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/boston-a970e5.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="636" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-230546" class="wp-caption-text">Photo from <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/34-Hillsdale-St-Boston-MA-02124/59118450_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zillow listing</a>.</figcaption></figure> <h2>Annapolis, Maryland</h2> <figure id="attachment_230544" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-230544" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/50-S-Homeland-Ave-Annapolis-MD-21401/2084260251_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-230544" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/annapolis-5b1d59.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="485" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-230544" class="wp-caption-text">Photo from <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/50-S-Homeland-Ave-Annapolis-MD-21401/2084260251_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zillow listing</a>.</figcaption></figure> <h2>Austin, Texas</h2> <figure id="attachment_230545" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-230545" style="width: 801px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/5713-Whitebrook-Dr-Austin-TX-78724/125914877_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-230545" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/austin-989262.jpg" alt="" width="801" height="532" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-230545" class="wp-caption-text">Photo from <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/5713-Whitebrook-Dr-Austin-TX-78724/125914877_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zillow listing</a>.</figcaption></figure> <p>&nbsp;</p> <h6><em>Featured image from <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/15-Church-St-Providence-RI-02904/66088402_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zillow listing</a>.</em></h6> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/quiz-which-perfect-pool-is-cool-for-the-summer-227324/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Quiz: Which Perfect Pool Is Cool for the Summer?</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/summer-smackdown-which-home-is-your-favorite-230460/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Summer Smackdown: Which Home Is Your Favorite?</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/building-backyard-fire-pit-219141/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">DIY Backyard Fire Pit: Build It in Just 7 Easy Steps</a></li> </ul> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=bPJocShLc6g:PdZC1zq1Mzs:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=bPJocShLc6g:PdZC1zq1Mzs:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/10-homes-saluting-the-red-white-blue-230542/feed/ 8 https://www.zillow.com/blog/10-homes-saluting-the-red-white-blue-230542/ 2019-06-18 22:51 +00:00 2019-06-19 10:51 +12:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976515020/comment-ditching-accommodation-supplement-not-the-answer?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Ditching+Accommodation+Supplement+not+the+answer https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976515020/comment-ditching-accommodation-supplement-not-the-answer?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Ditching+Accommodation+Supplement+not+the+answer COMMENT: Ditching Accommodation Supplement not the answer <p>Tenant advocates have long claimed the Accommodation Supplement benefits landlords over tenants but those demanding it be scrapped are ignoring some relevant facts, says NZ Property Investors Federation executive officer Andrew King.</p> Wed, 12 Jun 2019 10:53:00 +1200 2019-06-12 10:53 +12:00 2019-06-12 10:53 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=109962 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/m0PS_lVpqJg/ Tips & Advice moving in Own & Rent 5 Things to Do Before and After Closing Your journey doesn't end on closing day. Here are some next steps to consider before you actually move in. Mon, 10 Jun 2019 13:08:05 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/most-important-things-to-do-before-and-after-closing-109962/#comments Brendon DeSimone <p>You&#8217;ve been house shopping for months or even years. You&#8217;ve endured a series of offers, property disclosures, inspections and reports. Finally, after so much excitement, stress and anxiety, the house hunt has come to an end.</p> <p>But the story isn&#8217;t over yet. Here are some next steps to consider before you actually move in.</p> <h2>1. Plan renovations well in advance</h2> <p>Rarely does a buyer get a place that&#8217;s move-in ready. By the time you&#8217;ve signed a contract, you have lots of ideas about how you'll live in the home, how you'll customize it and what work needs to be done.</p> <p>If the place needs work, don&#8217;t wait until you&#8217;ve closed to engage a professional. Either at your final walkthrough or during a private appointment, get the proper contractors in the house and start collecting bids for necessary work. If possible, have floor sanding, painting or small fix-it work done before you move in. <a href="https://www.zillow.com/agent-finder/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Real estate agents</a> work with all kinds of tradespeople, so they're often a great resource for referrals.<b> </b></p> <h2>2. Set up the utilities</h2> <p>Some people assume the utilities will work once they walk in. While many utility companies have grace periods (the days between when the seller cancels service and the new owner calls), you can&#8217;t always assume this will be the case. If you have an out-of-town seller, they may have canceled services the day they knew all contingencies were removed. In this instance, the grace period likely lapsed, and you may be stuck dealing with the electric company, waiting for an appointment or just being without power when you really want to start painting, fixing or cleaning.</p> <p>The best plan is to call the utility companies and get service set up well before closing. If they haven&#8217;t received cancellation notice from the seller, let the seller know to take care of that.</p> <h2>3. Change the locks</h2> <p>Assume that everyone has a set of keys to your new home. The seller's real estate agent likely gave copies to their assistant, a painter, a stager or even another agent at some point during the listing period. That's why the first person you should call after getting the keys is a locksmith.</p> <h2>4. Hire a cleaning crew</h2> <p>There's nothing worse than showing up with the movers, dozens of boxes and your personal belongings only to discover the seller hasn&#8217;t had the place cleaned.</p> <p>Assume the worst and get a professional cleaning crew in there the minute after closing. Even if the seller did clean, they may have done a poor job. You want to start life in your new home with a clean slate. The bones of the place will be sparkling clean, and you won't be scrambling to get cleaners in while the home is in a state of unpacking disarray.</p> <h2>5. Have a handyperson, contractor or designer on call</h2> <p>Moving involves the kind of stuff you wouldn&#8217;t wish on your worst enemy. Things like aligning your framed artwork, centering the couch in the living room or getting the large rug set up in the master bedroom can drive you crazy.</p> <p>While it may seem like a luxury, investing a few hundred dollars in hiring someone to help with these tasks will save time and potentially relieve you of a giant headache.</p> <h2>Thinking ahead is the way to go</h2> <p>As your closing date draws near, you're probably exhausted. But taking a little extra time to plan ahead will save you time, money and stress - and make the move into your new home so much more satisfying.</p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/live-in-home-before-renovating-64719/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">3 Reasons to Live in a New Home Before Renovating</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/common-moving-nightmares-195663/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">3 Common Moving Nightmares (and How to Prevent Them)</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/how-to-move-cross-country-229891/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">How to Move Cross-Country: See How These Renters Made It Work</a></li> </ul> <p><em>Note: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinion or position of Zillow. Originally published February 2013.</em></p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=m0PS_lVpqJg:NW5fOEEdXSM:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=m0PS_lVpqJg:NW5fOEEdXSM:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/most-important-things-to-do-before-and-after-closing-109962/feed/ 1 https://www.zillow.com/blog/most-important-things-to-do-before-and-after-closing-109962/ 2019-06-10 13:08 +00:00 2019-06-11 01:08 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=64719 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/lCYH9Qjys9A/ Tips & Advice home buying remodeling 3 Reasons to Live in a New Home Before Renovating New house? Hold that sledgehammer! You might want to hold off until you've settled in. Mon, 10 Jun 2019 13:00:17 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/live-in-home-before-renovating-64719/#comments Brendon DeSimone <p>In today's market, many buyers forego <a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/fixer-upper-200428/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">fixer-uppers</a> for move-in ready homes. As a result, significant opportunities abound in prime locations as homes that need work linger on the market.</p> <p>In competitive markets, savvy consumers gravitate toward these homes that nobody else wants. Why? They can customize the home to their requirements and build equity along the way.</p> <p>That said, I often recommend that buyers live in a new home for a while before undertaking any <a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/high-price-home-improvements-199539/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">major remodeling or pricey home improvements</a>. I'm not talking about lighting or plumbing repairs necessary to make the house habitable. Rather, I'm referring to discretionary remodeling, expansions and other improvement projects.</p> <p>Here are three good reasons to at least consider holding off on the big home improvement projects until you&#8217;ve had some time to settle in.</p> <h2>1. Living in the home can change your mind</h2> <p>You may have grand visions for what you'd like to do to a home, based on its condition and your priorities at the time you buy it. But until you're actually living there, it's difficult to know exactly how you'll use the house, what will work for you and what won't.</p> <p>Ultimately, it's this day-to-day experience that will inform your home improvement decisions, instead of early notions of how you want your everyday experience to be.</p> <h2>2. After buying a home, you deserve a break</h2> <p>Buying a home is a massive project, an enormous change in your life and a shock to the system - if not your finances. I've seen buyers jump through hoops, spending months on end looking for a home. In some situations, it becomes a part-time job.</p> <p>A home renovation can be yet another big and stressful project, what with all the decisions to make and contractors to deal with.</p> <p>My recommendation: Take a break from the stress of buying your new home.</p> <h2>3. You need time to plan</h2> <p>Any renovation, no matter how small, should be designed with care. That means speaking to multiple architects, contractors or designers to get their take on your ideas and options - a time-consuming process.</p> <p>An hour with a well-qualified contractor can uncover opportunities where you least expected them. For instance, even though it may be an added cost now, moving the laundry machines from the garage to the top floor during a larger renovation may save you time and money down the road.</p> <p>Conversely, hiring architects and contractors while under the constraints of an escrow period is likely to cause problems for you later.</p> <p>Some buyers want to jump into renovations because they don&#8217;t want to live in a construction zone or pay rent and a mortgage at the same time. While this may make some economic sense upfront, it can still cause costly problems later.</p> <p>Often, buyers who said they don't want a home that requires any work end up buying a home that needs at least some. It's the natural evolution of the buying process. Rarely does someone end up buying the home they started off thinking they wanted.</p> <p>While you should be open to doing work on a home, don't feel stressed about getting it all done at once. Live as-is for six months to a year. Take the home for a test drive and see how it runs. You may be surprised at how your perspective and priorities change once you settle in.</p> <p><em>Find out which home renovations DIYers most regretted tackling themselves.</em></p> <div class="video-container"><iframe width="500" height="281" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/a3ldrExVRAM?feature=oembed&#038;enablejsapi=1&#038;modestbranding=1&#038;rel=0&#038;showinfo=0" frameborder="0" allow="accelerometer; autoplay; encrypted-media; gyroscope; picture-in-picture" allowfullscreen></iframe></div> <p><strong>Related</strong>:</p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/over-improving-228853/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Are You Overimproving for Your Neighborhood?</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/quiz-renovate-home-or-sell-225199/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Quiz: Should You Renovate Your Home or Sell?</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/home-renovation-team-trust-201009/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">How to Build a Home Renovation Team You Can Trust</a></li> </ul> <p><em>Note: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinion or position of Zillow.</em><br /> <em>Originally published August 2016.</em></p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=lCYH9Qjys9A:9BROLsTWc1c:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=lCYH9Qjys9A:9BROLsTWc1c:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/live-in-home-before-renovating-64719/feed/ 48 https://www.zillow.com/blog/live-in-home-before-renovating-64719/ 2019-06-10 13:00 +00:00 2019-06-11 01:00 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=191909 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/4uhZu7NmCTo/ Tips & Advice Moving relocation What to Unpack First in Your New Home Where are the towels? Who packed the cat food? When you're surrounded by boxes, what you need is a strategy. Sat, 08 Jun 2019 16:42:34 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/what-to-unpack-first-191909/#comments Moving.Tips <p>So you&#8217;re finally in your new home, surrounded by piles of boxes, tired and glad that your relocation is about to end.</p> <p>To fully complete your moving adventure, however, you need to unpack your belongings and make your new place feel like home. But where do you even begin?</p> <h2>First things first</h2> <p>No matter how much you want to get it over with, there are three important things to do before you can actually start unpacking.</p> <ol> <li><strong>Clean and prepare your new home</strong>. It's easier to wipe down shelves, clean windows and mop floors before your belongings are in place. Make sure your home-to-be is spotless when your items arrive. If you can't get to your new place early enough to do a thorough cleaning, consider hiring professional cleaners to do the job for you.</li> <li><strong>Inspect and organize your belongings</strong>. Check all the delivered boxes and household items against your inventory sheet to make sure nothing is damaged or missing. Then have each of your possessions taken to the room where it belongs. If everything was properly marked and labeled, sorting your items will be a piece of cake.</li> <li><strong>Set major furniture and appliances</strong>. Position your large furniture pieces and bulky household appliances first. Then you can put any smaller items you unpack later directly in their rightful places. Plan your interior design well in advance so you don't end up moving heavy pieces around several times.</li> </ol> <h2>Tackle the necessities</h2> <p>What matters most when unpacking your items after a move is ensuring that your essentials are immediately accessible. So prioritize your belongings, and unpack only the necessities first.</p> <h3>Bedding</h3> <p>You may not be able to unpack the entire bedroom right away, but you&#8217;ll definitely need at least the bed the day you move in. Reassemble the bed frame (if necessary), lay down the sheets, unpack the pillows and spread the blankets so you can get a good night's rest - you&#8217;re going to need it!</p> <p>Provided that you have a change of clothes and some comfortable indoor shoes (as well as curtains on the windows to ensure your privacy), the rest of your bedroom items can wait until you find the time and the energy to deal with them.</p> <h3>Bathroom items</h3> <p>Without a doubt, your personal care items, toiletries and medicines should top the list of the most important items to unpack after your move. Put out toilet paper and soap, find your toothbrush and toothpaste, hang the towels and the shower curtains, and unpack any other bathroom essentials you&#8217;ll need to wash away the weariness and stress of moving.</p> <h3>Kitchen necessities</h3> <p>Kitchens tend to take a very long time to unpack and organize properly due to the large number of items that need to be sorted and carefully arranged.</p> <p>As soon as you&#8217;ve hooked up the large appliances, such as the fridge and the stove, move on to your smaller kitchenware. Plates, silverware and glasses should be the first to find their places in cupboards and kitchen cabinets, closely followed by cooking utensils, pots and pans, and pantry items.</p> <h3>Kids&#8217; and pets&#8217; items</h3> <p>If you have young children, unpack some of their favorite toys, books, games and blankets during the first few hours in your new home. Keeping your young ones happy and occupied will let you concentrate on your work and finish it faster.</p> <p>Of course, you should also take care of your pets' needs immediately upon arrival. It&#8217;s a good idea to pack adequate pet food and some of your animal friends' favorite toys in your open-first box.</p> <h2>Finishing up</h2> <p>When you&#8217;ve unpacked the three most essential rooms in your home (bedroom, bathroom and kitchen), everything else can wait a bit. There are no deadlines to meet, so you can set your own pace when unpacking and decorating your new place - just unpack in order of priority without procrastinating.</p> <p>If you stay organized, set reasonable goals, clean after every unpacking phase, and dispose of the packing materials in a safe and eco-friendly manner, your new surroundings will soon stop looking like a warehouse full of boxes and start feeling like home.</p> <p><strong>Related</strong>:</p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/how-to-choose-a-moving-company-171437/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Picking a Moving Company: How Do Your Choices Stack Up?</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/additional-services-from-movers-178060/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">The Hidden Costs of Moving: 11 Extra Fees to Watch For</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/common-moving-nightmares-195663/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">3 Common Moving Nightmares (and How to Prevent Them)</a></li> </ul> <p><em>Originally published February 5, 2016.</em></p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=4uhZu7NmCTo:1omIS2gryQU:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=4uhZu7NmCTo:1omIS2gryQU:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/what-to-unpack-first-191909/feed/ 4 https://www.zillow.com/blog/what-to-unpack-first-191909/ 2019-06-08 16:42 +00:00 2019-06-09 04:42 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=198898 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/tCRIxi-3vsE/ Tips & Advice home buying Home selling Predicting the 'Right Time' to Buy or Sell a Home You can't see into the future, but you <italic>can</italic> make an informed decision. Thu, 06 Jun 2019 13:00:49 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/right-time-to-buy-or-sell-home-198898/#comments Brendon DeSimone <p>Buying or selling a home at the right time is tougher than it sounds. People usually take these actions because of a life event or financial issues, and the economy and real estate forecasts tend to be secondary considerations. Yet both buyers and sellers often pose the question, "When is the best time to buy or sell?"</p> <p>If you have the luxury of choosing when you enter the real estate market, here are some points to consider when timing a home purchase or sale.</p> <h2>Every market is different</h2> <p>There&#8217;s no longer one national real estate market or forecast like there was 20 years ago. And just because the 24/7 national news outlets tell stories of hot real estate markets with multiple offers and quickly rising prices doesn't mean that's happening in your neighborhood.</p> <p>In fact, real estate activity can vary widely within the same county. One town can see record-breaking activity, while another 10 miles away has a glut of inventory.</p> <p>If you want to purchase or sell, dig deeper, look around and get as much local information as possible. <a href="https://www.zillow.com/agent-finder/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Meet with a good local agent</a> early and often to stay informed about shifts in the market.</p> <h2>Interest rates fluctuate</h2> <p>Most people <a href="https://www.zillow.com/home-loans/#/landing" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">need a mortgage</a> to purchase a home, and long-term interest rates are a major factor. For many years, we've been living with historically low <a href="https://www.zillow.com/mortgage-rates/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">mortgage rates</a>. But while we might be living in a time of 3% or 4% rates today, remember that in the 1980s, rates were 12% or higher.</p> <p>It&#8217;s not uncommon for buyers to get off the sidelines and into the real estate market when they hear news of the Federal Reserve raising interest rates. It&#8217;s very likely that when rates do start to creep back up again (and they eventually will), would-be buyers will turn into active customers.</p> <h2>Seasons change</h2> <p>Traditionally, spring has been the big real estate selling season. Flowers bloom, the grass is green, pools are open and homes show in their best possible light. Parents with school-aged children also wanted to purchase in the spring or summer so the kids can start a new school in the fall.</p> <p>While spring is still a strong selling season, buyers are looking online and searching on their phones every day, no matter the season, and transactions happen from New Year&#8217;s Day to Christmas Eve.</p> <p>If you have a home to sell and aren't in a rush, consider doing so at a traditionally &#8220;off&#8221; time. There will be fewer homes for sale, which means less competition.</p> <p>Don't try to time the market based on antiquated assumptions about seasons. It's more important that you show your home in its <a href="https://www.zillow.com/sellers-guide/how-to-stage-house-to-sell/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">best possible condition</a> and <a href="https://www.zillow.com/sellers-guide/how-to-price-home-to-sell/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">choose the right listing price</a>. If it's priced right and shows well, it will sell anytime.</p> <h2>Money isn&#8217;t everything</h2> <p>If a real estate purchase were purely financial, then we would see every renter with savings and a solid job getting in the market. But there are practical and emotional considerations.</p> <p>I've worked with buyers for months, sometimes years. They were always qualified to purchase, but they never pulled the trigger. Why? Because it doesn't make sense to put down 20% and take on a mortgage if their job with an hour commute isn't steady, their marriage is on the rocks, or their aging parents live across the country.</p> <p>Renting and keeping with the status quo is totally acceptable if there is any uncertainty in your future. While these buyers are free to shop and learn the market, they may not make a move.</p> <p>Since the financial crisis, many buyers have been hesitant to get back into the real estate market. And for good reason: Some of those buyers probably were never qualified to be in the market. But in many parts of the country, we've seen a comeback. Some markets are better than others.</p> <p>If you think home buying is in your future, do your research. Take your time and start to get a feel for the market. Just know that nobody can predict when the right house will come along, and you can't time a real estate market.</p> <p><strong>Related</strong>:</p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/sellers-guide/thinking-of-selling-your-home/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Thinking of Selling Your Home? 8 Ways to Know You&#8217;re Ready</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/sellers-guide/buyers-or-sellers-market/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Determining the Local Housing Market: Buyers or Sellers Market</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/sellers-guide/listing-descriptions-that-sell/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Property Descriptions 101: How to Write Listing Descriptions That Sell</a></li> </ul> <p><em>Note: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinion or position of Zillow.</em></p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=tCRIxi-3vsE:oNabGTauTvQ:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=tCRIxi-3vsE:oNabGTauTvQ:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/right-time-to-buy-or-sell-home-198898/feed/ 4 https://www.zillow.com/blog/right-time-to-buy-or-sell-home-198898/ 2019-06-06 13:00 +00:00 2019-06-07 01:00 +12:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514967/comment-tenant-selection-turned-into-a-lotto-draw?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Tenant+selection+turned+into+a+lotto+draw https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514967/comment-tenant-selection-turned-into-a-lotto-draw?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Tenant+selection+turned+into+a+lotto+draw COMMENT: Tenant selection turned into a lotto draw <p>The Privacy Commissioner has created a lotto draw for tenant selection with the recent release of some ill-conceived guidelines, writes property management consultant David Faulkner.</p> Sat, 01 Jun 2019 08:00:00 +1200 2019-06-01 08:00 +12:00 2019-06-01 08:00 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=230460 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/jBLhoHWZrds/ Unique Homes Summer Smackdown: Which Home Is Your Favorite? Who's in for a little summertime competition? Fri, 31 May 2019 19:03:48 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/summer-smackdown-which-home-is-your-favorite-230460/#comments Jamie Birdwell-Branson <p>We all have a dream home, whether it&#8217;s a historic home in a busy neighborhood, a cabin in the middle of nowhere or a home on wheels.</p> <p>No matter what your dream home is, you&#8217;ll be sure to find a listing for it on Zillow. Let&#8217;s see what happens when our favorite home styles go head-to-head.</p> <div class="riddle_target" style="margin: 0 auto; max-width: 100%; width: 640px;" data-rid-id="196876" data-fg="#0074E4" data-bg="#FFFFFF" data-auto-scroll="false" data-auto-scroll-offset="0"><script src="https://www.riddle.com/files/js/embed.js"></script><br /> <iframe style="width: 100%; height: 300px; border: 1px solid #cfcfcf;" title="Opinion Poll - Which cozy dwelling makes you want to give up square footage?" src="https://www.riddle.com/a/196876?"></p> <section> <h2>Which cozy dwelling makes you want to give up square footage?</h2> </section> <section> <h2>Rustic mountain tiny home</h2> </section> <section> <h3>Vintage-loving tiny retreat</h3> </section> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><span data-mce-type="bookmark" style="display: inline-block; width: 0px; overflow: hidden; line-height: 0;" class="mce_SELRES_start"></span><br /> </iframe></div> <p><em><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/10250-Lomita-Ave-Felton-CA-95018/2085342730_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Rustic mountain tiny home</a>, <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/102-Old-San-Antonio-Rd-Boerne-TX-78006/28651247_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">vintage-loving tiny retreat</a></em></p> <div class="riddle_target" style="margin: 0 auto; max-width: 100%; width: 640px;" data-rid-id="196877" data-fg="#0074E4" data-bg="#FFFFFF" data-auto-scroll="false" data-auto-scroll-offset="0"><script src="https://www.riddle.com/files/js/embed.js"></script><br /> <iframe style="width: 100%; height: 300px; border: 1px solid #cfcfcf;" title="Opinion Poll - [COPY] Which cozy dwelling makes you want to give up square footage?" src="https://www.riddle.com/a/196877?"></p> <section> <h2>[COPY] Which cozy dwelling makes you want to give up square footage?</h2> </section> <section> <h2>Rustic mountain tiny home</h2> </section> <section> <h3>Vintage-loving tiny retreat</h3> </section> <p></iframe></div> <p><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/2A-Sugarpine-Pl-Bellingham-WA-98229/2084234832_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Window-filled loft</a>, <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/6-Barberry-Ln-Rye-NY-10580/32971707_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Mid-Century style &#8220;treehouse&#8221;</a></p> <div class="riddle_target" style="margin: 0 auto; max-width: 100%; width: 640px;" data-rid-id="196878" data-fg="#0074E4" data-bg="rgb(255, 255, 255)" data-auto-scroll="false" data-auto-scroll-offset="0"><script src="https://www.riddle.com/files/js/embed.js"></script><br /> <iframe style="width: 100%; height: 300px; border: 1px solid #cfcfcf;" title="Opinion Poll - Which A-frame gets the best report card?" src="https://www.riddle.com/a/196878?"></p> <section> <h2>Which A-frame gets the best report card?</h2> </section> <section> <h2>Cute and tidy Arkansas A-frame</h2> </section> <section> <h3>Dark and brooding Idaho A-frame</h3> </section> <p></iframe></div> <p><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/16438-Beaty-Rd-Sulphur-Springs-AR-72768/70615933_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Cute and tidy Arkansas A-frame</a>; <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/11004-S-Happy-Cove-Ln-Coeur-D-Alene-ID-83814/113119864_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">dark and brooding Idaho A-frame</a></p> <div class="riddle_target" style="margin: 0 auto; max-width: 100%; width: 640px;" data-rid-id="196879" data-fg="#0074E4" data-bg="rgb(255, 255, 255)" data-auto-scroll="false" data-auto-scroll-offset="0"><script src="https://www.riddle.com/files/js/embed.js"></script><br /> <iframe style="width: 100%; height: 300px; border: 1px solid #cfcfcf;" title="Opinion Poll - Which cabin do you want to completely unplug in?" src="https://www.riddle.com/a/196879?"></p> <section> <h2><span style="color: #2a2a33;">Which cabin do you want to completely unplug in?</span></h2> </section> <section> <h2>Majestic Lake Tahoe cabin</h2> </section> <section> <h3>Double-decker Gatlinburg cabin</h3> </section> <p></iframe></div> <p><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/756-Price-Ln-South-Lake-Tahoe-CA-96150/18570617_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Majestic Lake Tahoe cabin</a>; <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/313-Overview-Dr-Gatlinburg-TN-37738/42505688_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">double-decker Gatlinburg cabin</a></p> <div class="riddle_target" style="margin: 0 auto; max-width: 100%; width: 640px;" data-rid-id="196883" data-fg="#0074E4" data-bg="rgb(255, 255, 255)" data-auto-scroll="false" data-auto-scroll-offset="0"><script src="https://www.riddle.com/files/js/embed.js"></script><br /> <iframe style="width: 100%; height: 300px; border: 1px solid #cfcfcf;" title="Opinion Poll - Which waterside home would you like to watch a sunset from?" src="https://www.riddle.com/a/196883?"></p> <section> <h2><span style="color: #2a2a33;">Which waterside home would you like to watch a sunset from?</span></h2> </section> <section> <h2>California cool</h2> </section> <section> <h3>Pacific Northwest gem</h3> </section> <p></iframe></div> <p><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/3611-Padaro-Ln-Carpinteria-CA-93013/15877766_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">California cool</a>; <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/11790-Anderson-Lndg-NW-Silverdale-WA-98383/23403881_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Pacific Northwest gem</a></p> <div class="riddle_target" style="margin: 0 auto; max-width: 100%; width: 640px;" data-rid-id="196881" data-fg="#0074E4" data-bg="rgb(255, 255, 255)" data-auto-scroll="false" data-auto-scroll-offset="0"><script src="https://www.riddle.com/files/js/embed.js"></script><br /> <iframe style="width: 100%; height: 300px; border: 1px solid #cfcfcf;" title="Opinion Poll - Which rustic space feels most like home?" src="https://www.riddle.com/a/196881?"></p> <section> <h2><span style="color: #2a2a33;">Which rustic space feels most like home?</span></h2> </section> <section> <h2>Picturesque with cathedral ceilings</h2> </section> <section> <h3>Sleek and simple</h3> </section> <p></iframe></div> <p><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/76-Honey-Crisp-Ln-Broken-Bow-OK-74728/123340408_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Picturesque with cathedral ceilings</a>; <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/107-Island-Rd-Highland-Lakes-NJ-07422/39961227_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">sleek and simple</a></p> <div class="riddle_target" style="margin: 0 auto; max-width: 100%; width: 640px;" data-rid-id="196882" data-fg="#0074E4" data-bg="rgb(255, 255, 255)" data-auto-scroll="false" data-auto-scroll-offset="0"><script src="https://www.riddle.com/files/js/embed.js"></script><br /> <iframe style="width: 100%; height: 300px; border: 1px solid #cfcfcf;" title="Opinion Poll - Which historic home would you like to call your own?" src="https://www.riddle.com/a/196882?"></p> <section> <h2><span style="color: #2a2a33;">Which historic home would you like to call your own?</span></h2> </section> <section> <h2>A Vermont Victorian</h2> </section> <section> <h3>Stately in Washington, D.C.</h3> </section> <p></iframe></div> <p><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/266-S-Union-St-Burlington-VT-05401/12653870_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Vermont Victorian</a>; <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/3601-Newark-St-NW-Washington-DC-20016/450168_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">stately in Washington, D.C.</a></p> <p><strong>Related articles:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/quiz-which-perfect-pool-is-cool-for-the-summer-227324/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Quiz: Which Perfect Pool Is Cool for the Summer?</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/building-backyard-fire-pit-219141/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">DIY Backyard Fire Pit: Build It in Just 7 Easy Steps</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/getting-staying-organized-summer-202140/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Getting and Staying Organized Through the Summer</a></li> </ul> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=jBLhoHWZrds:tf4qd8j9GTo:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=jBLhoHWZrds:tf4qd8j9GTo:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/summer-smackdown-which-home-is-your-favorite-230460/feed/ 78 https://www.zillow.com/blog/summer-smackdown-which-home-is-your-favorite-230460/ 2019-05-31 19:03 +00:00 2019-06-01 07:03 +12:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514916/comment-why-the-new-standards-are-not-the-answer?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Why+the+new+standards+are+not+the+answer https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514916/comment-why-the-new-standards-are-not-the-answer?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Why+the+new+standards+are+not+the+answer COMMENT: Why the new standards are not the answer <p>The final version of the Government&rsquo;s new Healthy Homes minimum standards came out last week. Stop the War on Tenancies spokesman Mike Butler tells us what he thinks about them&hellip;</p> Thu, 23 May 2019 09:58:00 +1200 2019-05-23 09:58 +12:00 2019-05-23 09:58 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=195663 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/DjcCIXn5Fec/ Tips & Advice Moving relocation 3 Common Moving Nightmares (and How to Prevent Them) Moving doesn't have to be a waking nightmare. Here's how to avoid a move from ... you know where. Mon, 20 May 2019 13:37:56 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/common-moving-nightmares-195663/#comments Moving.Tips <p>Moving may top the list of stressful experiences that can feel like a bad dream - one that can easily come true unless you take precautionary measures.</p> <p>Problems can occur at every stage of the relocation process, but the most common moving nightmares fall into three categories. Here&#8217;s how they typically play out - and how to avoid them.</p> <h2>Poor organization</h2> <p>Moving involves a lot of loose ends, and even the smallest oversight can result in a disastrous move.</p> <ul> <li style="list-style-type: none;"> <ul> <li><strong>Packing chaos.</strong> You realize you&#8217;ve packed more items than previously discussed with the movers, and some items can&#8217;t be loaded onto the moving truck. Or maybe you don&#8217;t label the boxes properly. Worst of all, you may not be ready when the movers arrive. All these packing mistakes result in lost time and money.</li> <li><strong>Furniture troubles. </strong>If your large furniture doesn't fit through the doors, you may have to leave treasured pieces behind or request hoisting services that will cost you dearly and delay your move.</li> <li><strong>Paperwork problems</strong><strong>.</strong> If you forget to transfer the utilities, you won't have electricity, gas and water on move-in day. If you forget to change your address, you won't have your mail delivered to your new home. If you forget to update your driver's license and car registration in time, you'll be fined. Not taking proper care of your documents will most certainly get you in trouble.</li> <li><strong>Overspending.</strong> If you book your movers at the last moment, require too many extra services, fail to create a realistic moving budget or pack all your items without sorting them out first, you&#8217;ll end up paying much more than you expected.</li> <li><strong>Safety issues.</strong> Make every effort to prevent injuries and accidents on moving day, as getting hurt is one of the worst things that can happen during your relocation endeavor.</li> </ul> </li> </ul> <p>The best way to avoid problems when moving house is to plan each phase of your relocation adventure in meticulous detail and stay one step ahead all the time.</p> <h2>Traffic problems</h2> <p>Heavy traffic or road accidents can also turn your move into a real nightmare.</p> <ul> <li><strong>Traffic jams.</strong> The moving truck is delayed, and there may not be enough time to proceed with your move as planned. You may have to postpone the relocation to another day, or you may miss your flight.</li> <li><strong>Traffic accidents.</strong> If there has been an accident on the road, the moving truck will have to wait until the damaged vehicles are removed and normal traffic is restored. However, the scenario could get much worse: You may lose all your possessions or receive them badly damaged if the moving truck crashes, catches fire or gets trapped somewhere because of adverse weather conditions. It&#8217;s even possible that thieves could break into the vehicle and steal your goods.</li> <li><strong>Breakdown. </strong>If the moving truck breaks down on the road, you'll have to wait for the moving company to send another vehicle. What's more, your items can easily get damaged while being transferred.</li> <li><strong>Parking issues.</strong> The moving truck has to circle the neighborhood for hours until an appropriate parking space is vacated, or the movers have to park far away from your home&#8217;s entrance. In such cases, you'll not only lose valuable time but also have to pay an extra fee for the delay or an additional long-carry fee.</li> </ul> <p>Of course, there&#8217;s nothing you can do to prevent traffic accidents or breakdowns. But you can at least reserve a parking place directly in front of your old and new homes, and choose a moving company that has experienced drivers and several moving vehicles in good condition.</p> <h2>Misleading movers</h2> <p>Many moving horror stories involve rogue or incompetent movers.</p> <ul> <li><strong>The movers are late or don't show up at all</strong>. The agreed-upon time comes and goes, but you see no sign of an approaching moving truck. Regardless of the excuses you receive, the inevitable result will be lots of stress and wasted time.</li> <li><strong>The movers are careless or inexperienced</strong>. If your movers arrive late or lack the proper equipment to handle your items safely and efficiently, your relocation can quickly turn into a nightmarish experience.</li> <li><strong>The movers are scam artists. </strong>In the worst case scenario, you may fall victim to moving scams. Rogue movers will often request much more money than previously negotiated, based on alleged extra services. They may also hold your belongings hostage until you pay an extra "fee" as ransom or steal your more expensive belongings and discard the rest.</li> </ul> <p>The good news is that there is an easy way to avoid such nightmares. All you need to do is carefully research your movers before hiring them to make sure you are dealing with licensed and experienced professionals you can trust. It&#8217;s also a good idea to purchase appropriate insurance for your belongings, just in case.</p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/additional-services-from-movers-178060/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">The Hidden Costs of Moving: 11 Extra Fees to Watch For</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/how-to-choose-a-moving-company-171437/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Picking a Moving Company: How Do Your Choices Stack Up?</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/space-saving-ideas-small-kitchens-228858/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Maximizing Space in a Small Kitchen</a></li> </ul> <p><em>Originally published April 15, 2016.</em></p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=DjcCIXn5Fec:j4HjdQD0dW0:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=DjcCIXn5Fec:j4HjdQD0dW0:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/common-moving-nightmares-195663/feed/ 27 https://www.zillow.com/blog/common-moving-nightmares-195663/ 2019-05-20 13:37 +00:00 2019-05-21 01:37 +12:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514830/comment-ring-fencing-impact-likely-to-be-limited?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Ring-fencing+impact+likely+to+be+limited https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514830/comment-ring-fencing-impact-likely-to-be-limited?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Ring-fencing+impact+likely+to+be+limited COMMENT: Ring-fencing impact likely to be limited <p>The new rules around the ring-fencing of rental losses are unlikely to cause a sea-change in investor behaviour, according to CoreLogic senior property economist Kelvin Davidson.</p> Mon, 13 May 2019 07:05:00 +1200 2019-05-13 07:05 +12:00 2019-05-13 07:05 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=227324 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/zNQiaOpI2M8/ Unique Homes unique homes Quiz: Which Perfect Pool Is Cool for the Summer? It's a battle of the backyards! Which poolside retreat has your vote? Mon, 06 May 2019 18:49:30 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/quiz-which-perfect-pool-is-cool-for-the-summer-227324/#comments Jamie Birdwell-Branson <p>There&#8217;s nothing more refreshing than a dip in the pool during the dog days of summer. Whether you&#8217;re a floater, a diver or more of a poolside lounger, a pool is the best summer gathering spot for all your friends and family.</p> <p>So, grab your floaties, put on some sunscreen and get ready to take the plunge - it&#8217;s time to choose the pools where you&#8217;d most like to spend a scorching summer day!</p> <div class="riddle_target" data-rid-id="193869" data-fg="#0074E4" data-bg="#FFFFFF" style="margin:0 auto;max-width:100%;width:640px;" data-auto-scroll="false" data-auto-scroll-offset="0"> <script src="https://www.riddle.com/files/js/embed.js"></script> <link href="https://www.riddle.com/files/css/embed.css" rel="stylesheet"> <iframe style="width:100%;height:300px;border:1px solid #cfcfcf;" src="https://www.riddle.com/a/193869?" title="Opinion Poll - Mid-Century quirk or cleanly traditional?"></p> <section> <h2> <p>Mid-Century quirk or cleanly traditional?</p> </h2> </section> <section> <h2>Mid-Century quirk</h2> </section> <section> <h3>Cleanly traditional</h3> </section> <p></iframe> </div> <p><em>Photos from Zillow listings: <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/360-W-Crestview-Dr-Palm-Springs-CA-92264/18032160_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Mid-Century quirk</a>, <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/64-Jennifir-Ln-Bridgehampton-NY-11976/32728990_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">cleanly traditional</a></p> <div class="riddle_target" data-rid-id="193872" data-fg="#0074E4" data-bg="#FFFFFF" style="margin:0 auto;max-width:100%;width:640px;" data-auto-scroll="false" data-auto-scroll-offset="0"> <script src="https://www.riddle.com/files/js/embed.js"></script> <link href="https://www.riddle.com/files/css/embed.css" rel="stylesheet"> <iframe style="width:100%;height:300px;border:1px solid #cfcfcf;" src="https://www.riddle.com/a/193872?" title="Opinion Poll - Riverfront simplicity or long laps?"></p> <section> <h2> <p>Riverfront simplicity or long laps?</p> </h2> </section> <section> <h2>Riverfront simplicity</h2> </section> <section> <h3>Long laps</h3> </section> <p></iframe> </div> <p><em>Photos from Zillow listings: <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/400-Richards-Rd-Melbourne-Beach-FL-32951/43508171_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Riverfront lagoon</a>, <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/5206-E-Lincoln-Dr-Paradise-Valley-AZ-85253/7830833_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">long laps</a></p> <div class="riddle_target" data-rid-id="193874" data-fg="#0074E4" data-bg="#FFFFFF" style="margin:0 auto;max-width:100%;width:640px;" data-auto-scroll="false" data-auto-scroll-offset="0"> <script src="https://www.riddle.com/files/js/embed.js"></script> <link href="https://www.riddle.com/files/css/embed.css" rel="stylesheet"> <iframe style="width:100%;height:300px;border:1px solid #cfcfcf;" src="https://www.riddle.com/a/193874?" title="Opinion Poll - New Orleans charm or California garden?"></p> <section> <h2> <p>New Orleans charm or California garden?</p> </h2> </section> <section> <h2>New Orleans charm</h2> </section> <section> <h3>California garden</h3> </section> <p></iframe> </div> <p><em>Photos from Zillow listings: <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/1311-Jefferson-Ave-New-Orleans-LA-70115/149070334_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">New Orleans charm</a>, <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/320-Olive-St-Menlo-Park-CA-94025/15596123_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">California garden</a></p> <div class="riddle_target" data-rid-id="193875" data-fg="#0074E4" data-bg="#FFFFFF" style="margin:0 auto;max-width:100%;width:640px;" data-auto-scroll="false" data-auto-scroll-offset="0"> <script src="https://www.riddle.com/files/js/embed.js"></script> <link href="https://www.riddle.com/files/css/embed.css" rel="stylesheet"> <iframe style="width:100%;height:300px;border:1px solid #cfcfcf;" src="https://www.riddle.com/a/193875?" title="Opinion Poll - Pool playground or indoor slip and slide?"></p> <section> <h2> <p>Pool playground or indoor slip and slide?</p> </h2> </section> <section> <h2>Pool playground</h2> </section> <section> <h3>Indoor slip and slide</h3> </section> <p></iframe> </div> <p><em>Photos from Zillow listings: <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/11433-N-Sundown-Dr-Scottsdale-AZ-85260/7863714_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Pool playground</a>, <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/4700-Nelson-Ct-Park-City-UT-84098/68841934_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">indoor slip and slide</a></p> <div class="riddle_target" data-rid-id="193877" data-fg="#0074E4" data-bg="#FFFFFF" style="margin:0 auto;max-width:100%;width:640px;" data-auto-scroll="false" data-auto-scroll-offset="0"> <script src="https://www.riddle.com/files/js/embed.js"></script> <link href="https://www.riddle.com/files/css/embed.css" rel="stylesheet"> <iframe style="width:100%;height:300px;border:1px solid #cfcfcf;" src="https://www.riddle.com/a/193877?" title="Opinion Poll - Room for family or palatial hideaway?"></p> <section> <h2> <p>Room for family or palatial hideaway?</p> </h2> </section> <section> <h2>Room for family</h2> </section> <section> <h3>Palatial hideaway</h3> </section> <p></iframe> </div> <p><em>Photos from Zillow listings: <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/620-Highland-Park-Dr-Billings-MT-59102/3166495_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Room for family</a>, <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/7921-Big-View-Dr-Austin-TX-78730/70331825_zpid/?" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">palatial hideaway</a></p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/building-backyard-fire-pit-219141/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">DIY Backyard Fire Pit: Build It in Just 7 Easy Steps</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/quiz-renovate-home-or-sell-225199/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Quiz: Should You Renovate Your Home or Sell?</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/fire-pits-fireplaces-226493/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Quiz: Which Summer Space Melts Your Heart?</a></li> </ul> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=zNQiaOpI2M8:QTG_I4cUf4c:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=zNQiaOpI2M8:QTG_I4cUf4c:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/quiz-which-perfect-pool-is-cool-for-the-summer-227324/feed/ 162 https://www.zillow.com/blog/quiz-which-perfect-pool-is-cool-for-the-summer-227324/ 2019-05-06 18:49 +00:00 2019-05-07 06:49 +12:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514791/comment-punishing-landlords-won-t-solve-crisis?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Punishing+landlords+won%E2%80%99t+solve+crisis https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514791/comment-punishing-landlords-won-t-solve-crisis?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Punishing+landlords+won%E2%80%99t+solve+crisis COMMENT: Punishing landlords won’t solve crisis <p>The capital gains tax debate is over, but landlords are still being scapegoated as the focus turns to Healthy Homes, argues Auckland Property Investors Association vice president Peter Lewis&hellip;</p> Mon, 06 May 2019 07:02:00 +1200 2019-05-06 07:02 +12:00 2019-05-06 07:02 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=219141 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/wstqY2lyr3o/ Home Improvement DIY outdoor spaces DIY Backyard Fire Pit: Build It in Just 7 Easy Steps The perfect backdrop for outdoor fun is closer than you think, thanks to our step-by-step instructions. Mon, 29 Apr 2019 13:55:19 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/building-backyard-fire-pit-219141/#comments Jamie Birdwell-Branson <p>Turn your backyard into a cozy camp spot by making your own fire pit. This DIY project is easy to complete, and you'll be making s'mores around the fire in no time.</p> <p><iframe style="border: none; overflow: hidden;" src="https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2FZillow%2Fvideos%2F10155551644633594%2F&amp;show_text=0&amp;width=600" width="600" height="600" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"><span data-mce-type="bookmark" style="display: inline-block; width: 0px; overflow: hidden; line-height: 0;" class="mce_SELRES_start"></span><span data-mce-type="bookmark" style="display: inline-block; width: 0px; overflow: hidden; line-height: 0;" class="mce_SELRES_start"></span><span data-mce-type="bookmark" style="display: inline-block; width: 0px; overflow: hidden; line-height: 0;" class="mce_SELRES_start"></span><span data-mce-type="bookmark" style="display: inline-block; width: 0px; overflow: hidden; line-height: 0;" class="mce_SELRES_start"></span></iframe></p> <h2>Get ready</h2> <p>Before you begin building, consult your local fire code to see if fire pits are allowed in your city and, if so, how far away the fire pit has to be from a structure.</p> <p>Then, gather your supplies:</p> <ul> <li>Bricks for the fire pit wall</li> <li>Gravel</li> <li>Twine or string</li> <li>Tape measure</li> <li>Stake</li> <li>Large shovel</li> <li>Trowel</li> <li>Tamp</li> <li>Level</li> </ul> <p><img class="aligncenter wp-image-219154 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/zillow0-bf7c63-e1500502993932.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="516" /></p> <p>When purchasing bricks for the fire pit wall, go for something sturdy like retaining wall bricks or concrete pavers. Some home improvement stores even carry bricks specifically designed for fire pits. Use a layer of firebricks, which have a higher heat resistance, on the inner layer of the fire pit as an extra safety measure.</p> <p>Now that you have all your supplies and you&#8217;ve checked your local fire code, you&#8217;re ready to build!</p> <h2>1. Create a circle</h2> <p>Pick a spot for your fire pit (ensuring that it is located a safe distance from any structures, bushes or trees) and insert a stake in the ground where the center of the pit will be.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-219155" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/1-f83e2d-e1500496914973.png" alt="" width="800" height="800" /></p> <p>Tie one end of the string or twine to the stake and measure how wide you want your circle to be.</p> <p>Typically, a fire pit has a diameter of about 4-5 feet. Cut the string and tie the other end to the handle of a trowel. With the string or twine taut, drag the sharp end of the trowel around in a circle, creating a line in the grass.</p> <h2>2. Shovel out the grass</h2> <p>Using a large shovel, dig out the grass inside the circle.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-219161" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/2-e1500497282714.png" alt="" width="800" height="800" /></p> <p>For safety purposes, the hole for a fire pit should be about 6-12 inches deep. Be sure to call 811 before you start digging to ensure there are no utility lines buried under the spot you&#8217;ve chosen.</p> <h2>3. Tamp down the dirt</h2> <p>If you don't have a tamp, you can just use the bottom of your shovel.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-219165" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/3-a44c6b.png" alt="" width="800" height="800" /></p> <h2>4. Make sure the circle is level</h2> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-219167" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/5-af7ca7.png" alt="" width="800" height="800" /></p> <p>Get down on the ground with your level to ensure that the surface is ready for the bricks. Keep making small adjustments until it's completely level.</p> <h2>5. Add gravel</h2> <p>Put a pretty thick layer of gravel in the fire pit (at least a couple of inches). Spread the gravel around evenly.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-219169" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/6-795c92.png" alt="" width="800" height="800" /></p> <h2>6. Arrange the bricks</h2> <p>After you've spread the gravel around, arrange your bricks in a circle and stack them in layers until the fire pit wall is at least 12 inches tall.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-219171" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/7-747799.png" alt="" width="800" height="800" /></p> <p>For extra safety, you have the option to put an inner layer of firebricks. Though you don't need to use mortar if the bricks are heavy enough to make a sturdy stack, you can use an outdoor fire-resistant mortar between the bricks for extra stability.</p> <h2>7. Relax and enjoy!</h2> <p>Gather a couple of Adirondack chairs, some firewood, a few friends and campfire treats to get full use out of your new fire pit.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-219173" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/10-a8b86b.png" alt="" width="800" height="800" /></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Related</strong>:</p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/9-tips-planting-flower-bed-196266/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">9 Tips for Preparing a Fabulous Flower Bed</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/five-tips-spring-lawn-prep-213971/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">5 Tips for Spring Lawn Prep</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/sporting-goods-catchall-220812/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">With This DIY Sporting Goods Catch-All, Game Day Is No Sweat</a></li> </ul> <p>Originally published July 19, 2017.</p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=wstqY2lyr3o:7qCiQr60E7o:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=wstqY2lyr3o:7qCiQr60E7o:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/building-backyard-fire-pit-219141/feed/ 37 https://www.zillow.com/blog/building-backyard-fire-pit-219141/ 2019-04-29 13:55 +00:00 2019-04-30 01:55 +12:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514744/comment-why-takapuna-is-worth-a-look?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Why+Takapuna+is+worth+a+look https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514744/comment-why-takapuna-is-worth-a-look?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Why+Takapuna+is+worth+a+look COMMENT: Why Takapuna is worth a look <p>It&rsquo;s no surprise that new REINZ data shows Takapuna&rsquo;s median house price has climbed 30% over the past year, writes Takapuna Beach Association chief executive Terence Harpur.</p> Sat, 27 Apr 2019 11:49:00 +1200 2019-04-27 11:49 +12:00 2019-04-27 11:49 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=226261 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/0aD6H3jbRpI/ Unique Homes unique homes This Tiny Home Is Ready for Outer Space The shape is inspired by a spacecraft, making this home truly out of this world. Wed, 17 Apr 2019 13:29:37 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/lunar-lander-tiny-home-226261/#comments Lindsay Cohen <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ground control to Major Tom: Here's a home unlike any other we've seen.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">A lifelong architect went intergalactic to find inspiration for one of his latest designs: a tiny home shaped like </span><span style="font-weight: 400;">a lunar lander</span><span style="font-weight: 400;">.</span></p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-226288" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/008A4637-0666ea.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Nestled on the banks of the Columbia River in central Washington, the roughly 250-square-foot home is hexagon-shaped, perched nearly 9 feet above the ground on three massive steel beams.</span></p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-226287" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/008A4625-f5cf23.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Inside, earthlings are greeted by an open floor plan. A breakfast nook has a porthole-shaped window overlooking the river and the hillside; a kitchen with stainless steel appliances provides space to cook up </span><span style="font-weight: 400;">a feast for an astronaut</span><span style="font-weight: 400;">.</span></p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-226277" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/3_008A4511-101ecb.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="450" /></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">A large geodesic dome skylight showers the room with sunlight.</span></p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-226278" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/4_008A4524-015860.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="450" /></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;"> Just off the bathroom, a deep-blue sink and cerulean-colored mirror have a Mid-Century Modern feel (appropriate, considering </span><a href="https://www.nasa.gov/audience/forstudents/k-4/stories/first-person-on-moon.html" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer"><span style="font-weight: 400;">humans first walked on the moon in 1969</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;">).</span></p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-226279" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/5_008A4552-7e631d.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The bedroom sits below a small ladder and can comfortably sleep two people. </span></p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-226280" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/6_008A4558_2-c48192.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="450" /></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Upstairs, there's enough room for a small outdoor deck where you can gaze at area wildlife, including eagles and lynxes.</span></p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-226276" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/2_DSCF0443-1-49fca6.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="450" /></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">If the space reminds you of the tiny well-intentioned living quarters of a boat, it's no coincidence. The lunar lander's owner and designer, <a href="http://multihulldesigns.com/index.htm" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">Kurt Hughes</a>, is a boat designer by trade.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">He translated his three decades of boat building to home building - i</span><span style="font-weight: 400;">n fact, the wooden table in the dining nook is recycled from the Hughes' first sailboat.</span></p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-226283" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/008A4598-e1823d.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="800" /></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Beam us up, Scotty.</span></p> <p><em>Photos by Zillow&#8217;s Marcus Ricci.</em></p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/cave-house-229909/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Hibernate Luxuriously in This 5,572-Square-Foot Cave Mansion</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/bloomhouse-unique-home-229386/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">This Remarkable Home Is Anything but Square</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/joshua-tree-cabin-229298/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Sleep Under the Stars in This Tiny Cabin Near a National Park</a></li> </ul> <h6><em>Originally published May 2018.</em></h6> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=0aD6H3jbRpI:RCLObMpIwoM:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=0aD6H3jbRpI:RCLObMpIwoM:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/lunar-lander-tiny-home-226261/feed/ 167 https://www.zillow.com/blog/lunar-lander-tiny-home-226261/ 2019-04-17 13:29 +00:00 2019-04-18 01:29 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=201357 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/ss6R4xhdino/ Unique Homes Sanctuary Sanctuary: An Astronomer's Home Observatory For hobbyist Jonathan Fay, a trip to the stars awaits any time he wants to go. Tue, 16 Apr 2019 17:18:14 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/astronomist-home-observatory-201357/#comments Cat Overman <p>Jonathan Fay lives a double life. By day, he works in software engineering, but once the sun goes down, he opens a window to the heavens - right in his own backyard.</p> <p>The amateur astronomer designed and built an observatory behind his Woodinville, Washington, home to house his 12-inch telescope. There, he gazes at planetary nebula and photographs galaxies. For Fay, having his own sanctuary is out of this world.</p> <p><strong>How would you describe your sanctuary?<br /> </strong>My observatory is a place of peace where I can collect my gear and spend time with the universe. The nature of astronomy in the Pacific Northwest is challenging, but I&#8217;m able to open the dome and start observing without having to set up ahead of time and rush to cover things up when it rains.</p> <p><strong>What do you like best about the physical space?<br /> </strong>It&#8217;s separate from the activity of my home, and it&#8217;s quiet. I don't disturb anyone else, and they don't disturb me.</p> <p><strong>What's your home like? Is your sanctuary an extension or departure from your home?<br /> </strong>Our home is a two-story wood and brick home. The observatory blends nicely with the house and barn in style, but the dome clearly sets it apart.</p> <p><strong>Did you have your sanctuary in mind when you chose your home?<br /> </strong>No. A few years after I moved in, I realized I needed a more permanent place than a second-floor porch off the bedroom to set up my new telescope.</p> <div class="video-container"><iframe width="500" height="281" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/meXeYvRtsTQ?feature=oembed&#038;enablejsapi=1&#038;modestbranding=1&#038;rel=0&#038;showinfo=0" frameborder="0" allow="accelerometer; autoplay; encrypted-media; gyroscope; picture-in-picture" allowfullscreen></iframe></div> <p><strong>What was the tipping point that made you decide to create a sanctuary?<br /> </strong>When I would do astrophotography imaging runs on the second-floor porch, people would turn on lights or walk around, and the light and vibration would ruin the image. My wife didn&#8217;t like having to shut down her life for my hobby.</p> <p><strong>How did you build your sanctuary?<br /> </strong>I designed and built the observatory. I had some occasional help from friends when I needed lifting or a second pair of hands. I also had help from my kids handing me screws and nails while I worked.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-202163" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/Sanctuary_Fay_exterior_05-d8af8e.jpg" alt="Sanctuary_Fay_exterior_05" width="800" height="533" /></p> <p><strong>What was the biggest challenge in creating your sanctuary?<br /> </strong>Round stuff is hard. Especially when it has to rotate and be level. The dome was a hemisphere, so it was round in more than two dimensions. Woodworking tools are not optimized for round things.</p> <p><strong>Has your sanctuary always looked the same, or has it changed over time?<br /> </strong>We recently added wood floors from carpet. And we put on a new roof when we re-roofed the rest of the buildings on the property.</p> <p><strong>How much time do you typically spend in your sanctuary?<br /> </strong>Sometimes many hours for several days in a row. Sometimes I go weeks without going inside. It depends on the ebb and flow of life - and how bad I need it.</p> <p><strong>How did you get into astronomy in the first place?<br /> </strong>My aunt gave me a telescope when I was about 12. Since then I have loved space and astronomy, but when I could put a computer-controlled camera on a telescope, that made me want my own Hubble in my backyard.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-202164" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/Sanctuary_Fay_interior_01-d38e10.jpg" alt="Sanctuary_Fay_interior_01" width="800" height="533" /></p> <p><strong>Does your hobby influence what you do professionally or vice versa?<br /> </strong>Building my observatory, writing all the software for it, and doing astronomical imaging helped me create the <a href="http://www.worldwidetelescope.org/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">WorldWide Telescope</a> project with two of my co-workers. Now millions of people can visit space on their computer or planetarium because of it.</p> <p><strong>Do you share your sanctuary with anyone? What about your home?<br /> </strong>I will share the observatory with just about anyone who asks, and sometimes I invite people to join me. I share my home with my wife and five active kids. So sometimes a getaway is in order!</p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-202162" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/Sanctuary_Fay_portrait_08-2ac1fa.jpg" alt="Sanctuary_Fay_portrait_08" width="800" height="533" /></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>If you had a do-over, would you change anything about your sanctuary?<br /> </strong>While I love the look of the dome, I would make the shutters open wider to accommodate a bigger telescope.</p> <p><strong>Do you wish you had found your sanctuary sooner?<br /> </strong>It came at the right time for me, and I returned to update it when that time was right.</p> <p><strong>What advice would you share with those who dream of having a sanctuary someday?<br /> </strong>You&#8217;re not getting any younger. Just go for it, even if you don't use it as much as you think you need to to justify the cost. It will always be a great story to share.</p> <p><strong>Related</strong>:</p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/lunar-lander-tiny-home-226261/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">This Tiny Home Is Ready for Outer Space</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/from-scraps-to-sanctuary-a-700-a-frame-cabin-228670/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">From Scraps to Sanctuary: A $700 A-Frame Cabin</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/bloomhouse-unique-home-229386/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">This Remarkable Home Is Anything but Square</a></li> </ul> <h6><em>Originally published July 2016.</em></h6> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=ss6R4xhdino:0h_nw1epMDI:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=ss6R4xhdino:0h_nw1epMDI:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/astronomist-home-observatory-201357/feed/ 15 https://www.zillow.com/blog/astronomist-home-observatory-201357/ 2019-04-16 17:18 +00:00 2019-04-17 05:18 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=226153 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/rJJJwn_Qa0k/ Unique Homes unique homes Sleep Under the Stars in a Bubble Home It's the closest you'll ever get to living in nature without actually setting foot outside. Sun, 14 Apr 2019 19:58:44 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/bubble-dome-home-226153/#comments Lindsay Cohen <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Why live on the bubble when you can experience life inside it?</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">It's an appropriate question to ponder while gazing at the forest from inside this </span><a href="http://www.outlierinn.com" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer"><span style="font-weight: 400;">unusual dome home</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> in upstate New York. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Made to maximize views while maintaining partial privacy, this geodesic bubble tent is equal parts </span><span style="font-weight: 400;">glamping</span><span style="font-weight: 400;"> destination and fishbowl. It's the perfect place to observe nature without fully immersing yourself in it.</span></p> <figure id="attachment_226160" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-226160" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img class="wp-image-226160 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/Dome-Interior-2-f3987b.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /><figcaption id="caption-attachment-226160" class="wp-caption-text">Copyright 2018 <a href="http://www.leoncato.com/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">Leon Cato Photography</a>.</figcaption></figure> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Tucked away on a farm in Woodridge, New York, the dome is surrounded by a thicket of trees and sits just feet away from a greenhouse, a vegetable garden and a pond. </span></p> <figure id="attachment_226159" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-226159" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img class="wp-image-226159 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/Beach-071790.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /><figcaption id="caption-attachment-226159" class="wp-caption-text">Copyright 2018 <a href="http://www.leoncato.com/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">Leon Cato Photography</a>.</figcaption></figure> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ample windows offer views of the natural environment, and screened-in panels allow airflow but deter mosquitoes in the summertime.</span></p> <figure id="attachment_226181" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-226181" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img class="wp-image-226181 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/04C0323-27baf8.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="534" /><figcaption id="caption-attachment-226181" class="wp-caption-text">Copyright 2018 <a href="http://www.leoncato.com/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">Leon Cato Photography</a>.</figcaption></figure> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Still looking to bask in nature? Two outdoor showers and a clawfoot tub allow you to scrub and soak near the sugar maples.</span></p> <figure id="attachment_226158" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-226158" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img class="wp-image-226158 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/bathroom-605422.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /><figcaption id="caption-attachment-226158" class="wp-caption-text">Copyright 2018 <a href="http://www.leoncato.com/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">Leon Cato Photography</a>.</figcaption></figure> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">An open-air kitchen and grill offer up the chance to dine alfresco. </span></p> <figure id="attachment_226164" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-226164" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img class="wp-image-226164 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/outdoor-kitchen-64ed12.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /><figcaption id="caption-attachment-226164" class="wp-caption-text">Copyright 2018 <a href="http://www.leoncato.com/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">Leon Cato Photography</a>.</figcaption></figure> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The home is currently available as a <a href="https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/1602932" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">short-term rental</a> in the Catskill Mountains, roughly 95 miles from the heart of Manhattan.</span></p> <figure id="attachment_226162" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-226162" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img class="wp-image-226162 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/GA1_1090-1549a5.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="538" /><figcaption id="caption-attachment-226162" class="wp-caption-text">Copyright 2018 <a href="http://www.leoncato.com/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">Leon Cato Photography</a>.</figcaption></figure> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Bonus: Guests can interact with animals on the property (hello, goats!) and enjoy a recording studio, hiking trails or a weekly yoga class.</span></p> <figure id="attachment_226163" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-226163" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img class="wp-image-226163 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/GardenDome-413318.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /><figcaption id="caption-attachment-226163" class="wp-caption-text">Copyright 2018 <a href="http://www.leoncato.com/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">Leon Cato Photography</a>.</figcaption></figure> <p><em>Top featured image by George Apostolidis (<a href="http://www.georgeapostolidis.com/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">portfolio</a>, <a href="https://www.instagram.com/ga_photo/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">Instagram</a>). </em></p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/lunar-lander-tiny-home-226261/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">This Tiny Home Is Ready for Outer Space</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/tiny-tropical-treehouse-in-hawaii-225313/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Explore a Tiny, Tropical Treehouse in Hawaii</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/astronomist-home-observatory-201357/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Sanctuary: An Astronomer&#8217;s Home Observatory</a></li> </ul> <h6><em>Originally published May 2018.</em></h6> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=rJJJwn_Qa0k:mpQ_I_j1a3k:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=rJJJwn_Qa0k:mpQ_I_j1a3k:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/bubble-dome-home-226153/feed/ 46 https://www.zillow.com/blog/bubble-dome-home-226153/ 2019-04-14 19:58 +00:00 2019-04-15 07:58 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=196266 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/FAD_iY90Ttc/ Home Improvement gardening 9 Tips for Preparing a Fabulous Flower Bed Dust off your vases, pitchers and mugs - your home will be overflowing with fresh-cut blooms in no time. Wed, 10 Apr 2019 13:40:57 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/9-tips-planting-flower-bed-196266/#comments Steve Asbell <p>Have you ever ended up with a bed of dead flowers, mountains of mulch and a whopping garden center receipt? Let's do something about that, shall we?</p> <p>Get your gardening groove back with these nine tips.</p> <h2>1. Start with a clean slate</h2> <p>There are two kinds of flower beds: those that have been well-prepared and those that are covered in weeds.</p> <p>Give your unplanted bed the once-over. Does it get enough sunlight? Does water tend to collect there? Have you removed all weeds, roots and rocks so your plants will thrive? It's a lot easier to fix these problems now than it is once you&#8217;ve planted the flowers and laid the mulch.</p> <h2>2. Start seeds</h2> <p>Start a flower bed from seed to save money, raise unusual varieties and enjoy the satisfaction of having grown a whole garden from a handful of tiny seeds.</p> <p>Since some seeds transplant poorly, check the packet and make sure you don't have to sow directly in the ground. Start seeds in trays, pots or coir pots, using a seedling mixture, place them in a sunny spot, and transplant as soon as they have developed sturdy stems.</p> <h2>3. Prepare nursery plants</h2> <p>Nursery-grown bedding plants give you instant gratification, but the short time between purchase and planting is crucial to their survival.</p> <p>Pack them closely in your car to avoid damage, and take them home immediately so that they don't fry in your car during other errands.</p> <p>Water nursery plants as soon as you get home, as often as necessary after that, and a few hours before planting to help their fragile roots survive the trauma of transplanting.</p> <h2>4. Get the winning edge</h2> <p>Even the most carefully planned border can look sloppy without a clearly defined edge. Avoid those inexpensive and quickly deteriorating edges made of plastic, and choose a more natural and long-lasting alternative.</p> <p>The cheapest solution is to make a shallow trench around the bed with your spade and maintain it throughout the season. For something more refined and permanent, set an edge of brick, concrete or stone in leveling sand. The initial cost may be higher, but they will save you a lot of work and make mowing easier.</p> <h2>5. Plan for the seasons</h2> <p>Choose annuals if you plan on replacing them in a season or two, and plant perennials if you'd like them to last longer. Plant evergreen shrubs or ornamental grasses to provide structure and year-round interest.</p> <p>Also consider the plant's eventual height. Plant low-growing flowers (usually annuals) at the front of the bed where you can easily view them and replace them at the end of their season.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter wp-image-196923" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/shutterstock_395790778-42b523.jpg" alt="shutterstock_395790778" width="800" height="416" /></p> <h2>6. Give them space</h2> <p>Follow the guidelines on the seed packet or plant tag as closely as possible. An often overlooked factor is the amount of space to leave around each plant so they have room to grow. To cover a lot of ground quickly, choose spreading varieties like Superbells and climbing nasturtiums.</p> <h2>7. Dig the perfect hole</h2> <p>Dig each plant's hole to be twice as wide as the original pot so the roots will have plenty of room to grow. To give them an even better head start, make a little trench around the inside of the hole so the roots will spread down and out.</p> <p>This step isn't necessary for annuals, since they won't be around long enough to enjoy their strong root systems, but it is helpful if you have clay soil.</p> <h2>8. Plant it right</h2> <p>When planting transplants and nursery plants, always place them so that their crowns (where the plant meets the soil) are level with the soil in the bed. If the crown is above the soil level, the plant may dry out when soil washes away from the roots. If planted too low, soil will settle around the crown and rot the plant.</p> <p>Push the soil around the transplant and firmly tamp it in place with a trowel so no gaps are left between the roots.</p> <h2>9. Mulch mindfully</h2> <p>Mulch is essential for conserving moisture and preventing weeds, but one inch is all you need. Established garden beds don't even need mulch because the plants themselves are capable of protecting the soil.</p> <p>Avoid landscaping fabric, since it actually keeps moisture from percolating into the soil. Instead, lay down sheets of newspaper before mulching.</p> <p>Mulches vary by region, but whichever kind you use, follow this one rule: Don't ever pile it up against the plants. They'll rot in no time, and you'll soon have nothing more than an ugly bed of mulch in their place.</p> <p><strong>Related</strong>:</p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/grow-a-container-garden-175537/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">How to Grow a Spectacular Container Garden</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/budget-friendly-curb-appeal-194022/">8 Curb Appeal Boosters You Can Do in a Weekend</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/five-tips-spring-lawn-prep-213971/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">5 Tips for Spring Lawn Prep</a></li> </ul> <h6><em>Originally published April 2016.</em></h6> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=FAD_iY90Ttc:nQSInXZ1A_8:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=FAD_iY90Ttc:nQSInXZ1A_8:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/9-tips-planting-flower-bed-196266/feed/ 1 https://www.zillow.com/blog/9-tips-planting-flower-bed-196266/ 2019-04-10 13:40 +00:00 2019-04-11 01:40 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=217661 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/8YQHy53qr8Q/ Home Improvement DIY Fixtures Summer Good Clean Fun: How to Build an Outdoor Shower Expand your shower options to the great outdoors - it's easier to do than you might think! Wed, 10 Apr 2019 13:15:46 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/how-to-build-outdoor-shower-217661/#comments See Jane Drill <p>Outdoor showers may seem like a luxury - something that only those with beach houses would need or be lucky enough to have. But an avid gardener, runner or someone that enjoys the freedom of bathing in nature, you may consider an outdoor shower for your own home.</p> <p>Lucky for you, outdoor showers are an accessible feature for just about anyone. It all depends on how simple or complex you want your shower to be. A simple outdoor shower with cold water costs approximately $1,000 or less. An outdoor shower with an enclosure and hot and cold water will run about $4,000-$8,000.</p> <p>Here are four things to consider before taking the plunge on your own little piece of outdoor bathing heaven.</p> <h2>Location</h2> <p>This is one of the most important considerations. It&#8217;s best to choose a spot that you use often. In most cases, anywhere near the back entrance to your home is a good choice - maybe adjacent to the back door or on the back <a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/tips-wood-deck-maintenance-199537/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">deck</a>. If you have a pool, situate the shower nearby for easy rinses before and after swimming.</p> <p>Another major consideration is plumbing access. Unless you&#8217;re installing the type of shower that attaches to a garden hose, you&#8217;ll need to install it close to existing plumbing.</p> <p>Last but not least, go for a sunny spot. This will help keep mold and mildew at bay and provide natural warmth while you rinse.</p> <h2>Privacy</h2> <p>Privacy is a fairly important consideration, unless you think only swimsuit-clad people will use the outdoor shower. You want the shower to feel private and far from prying eyes, but you also want to keep the natural feeling.</p> <figure id="attachment_217901" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-217901" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/153-Paradise-Cove-Rd-Malibu-CA-90265/2140090017_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-217901" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/rustic-3-4-bathroom-with-outdoor-shower-i_g-IS913o0i190a211000000000-Wt1TD-ad0a6a.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="534" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-217901" class="wp-caption-text">Photo from <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/153-Paradise-Cove-Rd-Malibu-CA-90265/2140090017_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zillow listing</a>.</figcaption></figure> <p>An easy and adjustable choice is a freestanding folding screen. These screens work particularly well on decks and patios, where it might be impractical to build any type of wall.</p> <p>Another option is building corrugated metal wing walls to create a shower &#8220;corner&#8221; of sorts, where swimmers can rinse off after a dip. You can make this more private by adding a third wall to the design. Of course, there&#8217;s always the more elaborate option, which would be to surround the shower with wooden walls.</p> <h2>Plumbing</h2> <p>The simplest and most inexpensive plumbing option, and one that many people choose, is a shower connected to a garden hose, which is then hooked up to an outside faucet. This cold-water fixture is perfect for an outdoor shower that&#8217;s used only in the heat of summer and mostly for cleaning off dirt and sand.</p> <p>Next up is the hot-and-cold hose option. First, you&#8217;ll need a plumber to install an outdoor hot-water faucet next to the cold one. From there, it basically works in a similar fashion to the cold-water hose shower.</p> <p>The most elaborate - and most expensive - is the plumbed-in outdoor shower. This is worth investing in if you anticipate consistent outdoor showers and not just cleaning up after a hot day in the sun. The only downside to this option: If you live in an area with freezing winters, you have to make sure you can fully drain and insulate the plumbing so it doesn't burst.</p> <h2>Drainage</h2> <p>The simplest and most common drainage system is letting the used water drain into your yard. If you don't have very porous ground in your yard, or if the outdoor shower is close to your home, consider attaching the plumbing to your home&#8217;s drainage pipes or installing a French drain (essentially a gravel-lined channel connected to a pipe that directs water to a drainage area).</p> <p>The easiest thing to do, of course, is to go with the first option and recycle the water into your garden.</p> <h2>Accessories</h2> <p>Incorporate affordable accessories that add to the fun and pleasure of showering outdoors. A large rainfall showerhead enhances that outdoor feeling, and <a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/40-plants-for-hanging-baskets-195194/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">plants or flowers</a> in the shower area or peeping through the enclosure add a whimsical touch.</p> <p>Add some soft solar-powered lights for showering at dusk, install hooks for hanging towels and wet bathing suits, and maybe even add a chair to sit in. Most importantly, design your shower to take advantage of nature&#8217;s views, whether that&#8217;s the sky overhead or the splendor of your backyard garden.</p> <figure id="attachment_217847" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-217847" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/1020-Fern-St-New-Orleans-LA-70118/84480728_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-217847" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/shower4-c7b056.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="534" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-217847" class="wp-caption-text">Photo from <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/1020-Fern-St-New-Orleans-LA-70118/84480728_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zillow listing</a>.</figcaption></figure> <p>With just a little planning and effort, you can install your own outdoor shower and stay cool during the sunnier months.</p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/make-small-bathroom-look-bigger-220703/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">10 Ways to Make a Small Bathroom Look Bigger</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/building-backyard-fire-pit-219141/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">DIY Backyard Fire Pit: Build It in Just 7 Easy Steps</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/bathroom-redo-without-remodeling-174027/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">8 DIY Ways to Redo Your Bathroom (Without Remodeling)</a></li> </ul> <p><em>Originally published June 26, 2017.</em></p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=8YQHy53qr8Q:6n_OcaRVObo:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=8YQHy53qr8Q:6n_OcaRVObo:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/how-to-build-outdoor-shower-217661/feed/ 16 https://www.zillow.com/blog/how-to-build-outdoor-shower-217661/ 2019-04-10 13:15 +00:00 2019-04-11 01:15 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=230325 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/5YF0t-uwke8/ Unique Homes Bathrooms 9 Homes With Dreamy Spots for April Showers Who needs the spa when your bathroom looks like this? Mon, 08 Apr 2019 22:10:15 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/9-homes-with-dreamy-spots-for-april-showers-230325/#comments Jamie Birdwell-Branson <p>A good spring shower leaves the earth feeling refreshed and renewed - which is not unlike a good shower in your own home. A well-designed and polished bathroom can invigorate you in the morning or relax you before bed.</p> <p>These 10 bathrooms in for-sale homes across the country give us that feeling of rejuvenation - and make us just the tiniest bit envious.</p> <h2>Spa-like in the city</h2> <p>For sale: $1.3 million</p> <p>This Tudor revival in <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/4436-Q-St-NW-Washington-DC-20007/434454_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Washington, D.C.,</a> is equal parts modern and traditional - and its sleek yet comfortable bathroom is exactly what you&#8217;d need after a long day in this busy political city. This bathroom has all the spa features of your dreams, including a soaking tub with ample space for bath supplies, a double vanity with tons of storage underneath and a neutral, calming color palette.</p> <figure id="attachment_230335" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-230335" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/4436-Q-St-NW-Washington-DC-20007/434454_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-230335 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/Washington-DC-69ff2e.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="600" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-230335" class="wp-caption-text"><em>Photo from <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/4436-Q-St-NW-Washington-DC-20007/434454_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zillow listing.</a></em></figcaption></figure> <p>See more homes in <a href="https://www.zillow.com/washington-dc/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Washington, D.C.</a></p> <h2>A stylish soak</h2> <p>For sale: $1.5 million</p> <p>This stunning home in <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/S7595-Taylor-Rd-De-Soto-WI-54624/113689031_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">De Soto, Wisconsin, </a>is an award-winning architectural structure, but the bathroom is by far the dreamiest of all its spaces. The light hardwoods and paneling contrast beautifully with the slate-gray tub and vanity countertop, and the lighting gives just enough ambience without being too overpowering - perfect for taking a midafternoon soak in the tub on a Saturday.</p> <figure id="attachment_230332" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-230332" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/S7595-Taylor-Rd-De-Soto-WI-54624/113689031_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-230332 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/De-Soto-WI-be0060.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="600" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-230332" class="wp-caption-text"><em>Photo from <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/S7595-Taylor-Rd-De-Soto-WI-54624/113689031_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zillow listing.</a></em></figcaption></figure> <p>See more homes in <a href="https://www.zillow.com/de-soto-wi/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">De Soto.</a></p> <h2>Tan-quility in Texas</h2> <p>For sale: $1.4 million</p> <p>This bathroom in <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/555-E-5th-St-APT-3001-Austin-TX-78701/64899564_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Austin, Texas,</a> blends neutral tones and contemporary glass to instantly relax you - and add a huge dash of style. A deep soaking tub connects seamlessly to the oversized glass-encased shower, which has a large bench and built-in shelf for bath products.</p> <figure id="attachment_230327" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-230327" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/555-E-5th-St-APT-3001-Austin-TX-78701/64899564_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-230327 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/Austin-TX-2b8d79.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="534" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-230327" class="wp-caption-text"><em>Photo from <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/555-E-5th-St-APT-3001-Austin-TX-78701/64899564_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zillow listing.</a></em></figcaption></figure> <p>See more homes for sale in <a href="https://www.zillow.com/austin-tx/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Austin</a>.</p> <h2>Polished and pretty in porcelain</h2> <p>For sale: $595,000</p> <p>It&#8217;s not hard to imagine yourself spending quality time in this light-filled <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/1725-S-Newport-Ave-Tulsa-OK-74120/22147184_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Tulsa, Oklahoma,</a> bathroom. A free-standing curved bathtub sits beautifully right by a picture window, highlighted by a modern light fixture. And right next to it is a glass-encased shower for early mornings when you don&#8217;t have time to leisurely take a dip.</p> <figure id="attachment_230334" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-230334" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/1725-S-Newport-Ave-Tulsa-OK-74120/22147184_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-230334 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/Tulsa-OK-9c114c.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="600" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-230334" class="wp-caption-text"><em>Photo from <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/1725-S-Newport-Ave-Tulsa-OK-74120/22147184_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zillow listing</a>.</em></figcaption></figure> <p>See more homes for sale in <a href="https://www.zillow.com/tulsa-ok/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Tulsa</a>.</p> <h2>A bathing beauty with a view</h2> <p>For sale: $26.5 million</p> <p>It&#8217;s hard to find a favorite thing about this luxury bathroom in <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/571-Sand-Point-Rd-Carpinteria-CA-93013/15876938_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Carpinteria, California</a>. Is it the floor-to-ceiling marbled tile or the mountain views as you shower? Whether you love the ceiling-mounted showerhead or the giant tub with cozy built-ins for all your products, this bathroom is an inspiration.</p> <figure id="attachment_230330" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-230330" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/571-Sand-Point-Rd-Carpinteria-CA-93013/15876938_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-230330 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/Carpinteria-CA-6239d1.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="600" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-230330" class="wp-caption-text"><em>Photo from <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/571-Sand-Point-Rd-Carpinteria-CA-93013/15876938_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zillow listing.</a></em></figcaption></figure> <p>See more homes in <a href="https://www.zillow.com/carpinteria-ca/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Carpinteria</a>.</p> <h2>A grown-up shower to shout about</h2> <p>For sale: $2.9 million</p> <p>Let us count the ways we love this bathroom in <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/10221-SE-23rd-St-Bellevue-WA-98004/48855512_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Bellevue, Washington</a>. For one, we can&#8217;t get enough of the contrast between the black hexagon tile on the floor and the large white subway tile in the shower. We also love the vessel sink that sits atop an oversize purple-gray vanity, which adds an unexpected pop of color.</p> <figure id="attachment_230328" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-230328" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/10221-SE-23rd-St-Bellevue-WA-98004/48855512_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-230328 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/Bellevue-WA-3b3d33.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="600" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-230328" class="wp-caption-text"><em>Photo from<a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/10221-SE-23rd-St-Bellevue-WA-98004/48855512_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"> Zillow listing.</a></em></figcaption></figure> <p>See more homes in <a href="https://www.zillow.com/bellevue-wa/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Bellevue</a>.</p> <h2>A bubble-filled bathroom</h2> <p>For sale: $1.9 million</p> <p>The light fixtures in this <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/23-Horseshoe-Dr-East-Hampton-NY-11937/32665517_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">East Hampton, New York,</a> bathroom are reminiscent of bubbles - appropriate for a room with a free-standing soaking tub. Another set of bubble lights sits above the wall-mounted modern sink with plenty of storage underneath.</p> <figure id="attachment_230333" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-230333" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/23-Horseshoe-Dr-East-Hampton-NY-11937/32665517_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-230333 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/East-Hampton-NY-482bc4.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-230333" class="wp-caption-text"><em>Photo from <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/23-Horseshoe-Dr-East-Hampton-NY-11937/32665517_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zillow listing</a>.</em></figcaption></figure> <p>See more homes for sale in <a href="https://www.zillow.com/east-hampton-ny/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">East Hampton</a>.</p> <h2>Large and luxurious in Dallas</h2> <p>For sale: $2.8 million</p> <p>Everything is bigger in Texas, and this <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/4818-Irvin-Simmons-Dr-Dallas-TX-75229/26757038_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Dallas, Texas,</a> bathroom is no exception. A picture-perfect free-standing tub is framed by two playful light fixtures, as well as an oversized window that lets in a lot of light but still manages to give you privacy, thanks to the trees right outside.</p> <figure id="attachment_230331" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-230331" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/4818-Irvin-Simmons-Dr-Dallas-TX-75229/26757038_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-230331 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/Dallas-TX-cb66a9.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="600" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-230331" class="wp-caption-text"><em>Photo from <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/4818-Irvin-Simmons-Dr-Dallas-TX-75229/26757038_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Zillow listing.</a></em></figcaption></figure> <p>See more homes for sale in <a href="https://www.zillow.com/dallas-tx/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Dallas</a>.</p> <h2>Simple yet stately</h2> <p>For sale: $1.9 million</p> <p>Large marbled tile and a crystal-clear glass shower door make for a beautiful bathroom in <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/56-Belmont-St-1-Boston-MA-02129/2086360050_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Boston, Massachusetts</a>. It&#8217;s not especially hard to imagine taking a nice, relaxing shower with that ceiling-mounted showerhead.</p> <figure id="attachment_230329" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-230329" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/56-Belmont-St-1-Boston-MA-02129/2086360050_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><img class="wp-image-230329 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/Boston-MA-2e6f3e.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="534" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-230329" class="wp-caption-text"><em>Photo from<a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/56-Belmont-St-1-Boston-MA-02129/2086360050_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"> Zillow listing</a>.</em></figcaption></figure> <p>See more homes for sale in <a href="https://www.zillow.com/boston-ma/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Boston</a>.</p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/make-small-bathroom-look-bigger-220703/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">10 Ways to Make a Small Bathroom Look Bigger</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/not-to-do-remodel-bathrooms-223520/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">What NOT to Do When Remodeling Bathrooms</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/common-bathroom-problems-229184/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">5 Common Bathroom Problems and How to Fix Them</a></li> </ul> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=5YF0t-uwke8:hNtVMlLosG4:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=5YF0t-uwke8:hNtVMlLosG4:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/9-homes-with-dreamy-spots-for-april-showers-230325/feed/ 30 https://www.zillow.com/blog/9-homes-with-dreamy-spots-for-april-showers-230325/ 2019-04-08 22:10 +00:00 2019-04-09 10:10 +12:00 https://www.zillow.com/digs/guides/?p=1962 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/fK1V9BgMwJo/ Home Improvement Home Organization kitchens Maximizing Space in a Small Kitchen Small kitchens can be a challenge. Use these tips to set up a kitchen that lets your inner chef shine. Thu, 04 Apr 2019 21:12:06 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/space-saving-ideas-small-kitchens-228858/#comments Natalie Wise <p>Many homes come with kitchens that are less than ideal. The lighting can be terrible, the appliances old, the floors grimy … and counter space? Well, that&#8217;s a nice idea.</p> <p>Get the most out of the kitchen space you <em>do</em> have with these tips.</p> <h2>Make room</h2> <p>You can create extra space, even when it seems impossible. Over-the-sink covers, cutting boards and colanders help increase your workspace.</p> <p>Burner covers for your stove and a large cutting board or tray can create extra counter space when you&#8217;re entertaining and want to set out snacks (provided you don&#8217;t need to use your stove).</p> <p>Fold-up tables (attached to the wall or stand-alone) offer extra space when needed. If there's room, a butcher block or island instantly create food prep or storage space.</p> <p>Another simple way to create space? Pare down your belongings - especially on the counters - and only keep the necessities.</p> <h2>Go vertical</h2> <p>A wall above the stove may be perfectly suited for a pegboard where you can hang pots, pans and utensils. Magnetic knife and spice racks can fit into small wall spaces under cabinets or above sinks.</p> <p>Refrigerators can serve as storage space for magnetic spice racks, towels, pot holders, or dry-erase boards or chalkboards, which are both useful and decorative. And over-the-cabinet hooks and towel racks add extra storage quickly and easily.</p> <h2>Use bookcases</h2> <p>Small bookcases are a kitchen's best friend. They are perfectly narrow, they come in many heights and they offer tons of storage options.</p> <p>In addition to keeping cookbooks tidy, they can also hold pots, pans, dishes, food items, storage containers and baskets.</p> <p>Add hooks to the side of your bookshelf to store aprons or other lightweight tools.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter wp-image-230346" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/GettyImages-960874986-bd3984.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="534" /></p> <h2>Add art and color</h2> <p>Art and color are fast ways to personalize a small kitchen. Color-coordinated kitchen accessories become art in and of themselves, and a simple color palette lets the eye rest in a small space.</p> <p>When using every inch of space, don't forget to leave room for a few decorative elements. Hang attractive tea towels with pushpins for a practical splash of color. And fresh flowers on a shelf or table instantly brighten the space and add life.</p> <p>If you have a windowsill, an herb garden is the perfect way to use the space and bring vibrancy. You might even consider installing a <a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/diy-vertical-garden-227769/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">vertical garden</a>.</p> <h2>Cover eyesores</h2> <p>Every older kitchen has at least one eyesore: an ancient microwave, a scratched-up refrigerator or a hideous vinyl floor. If you&#8217;re not ready to put down the cash for a remodel, cover these as best you can.</p> <p>Cover exposed sink pipes with curtains attached to the bottom of the sink (bonus: extra storage space). Store your old microwave or replace it with a newer, more attractive version.</p> <p>As for scratched or just plain ugly refrigerators and appliances, adhesive vinyl can create a like-new look in a matter of minutes.</p> <p>Cover unsightly floors with kitchen-friendly mats that also make standing at the counter easier on your feet, and refresh old cupboards and drawers with plain or patterned drawer liners.</p> <h2>Upgrade lighting</h2> <p>Lighting in any kitchen is hard to get right. Many fixtures make the space feel dated, and upgrading bulbs and cleaning light covers will make a difference right away. Consider installing adhesive under-cabinet lighting to better illuminate your workspace.</p> <p>If you can direct your lighting, such as track lighting, make sure it points to the kitchen triangle - that well-worn path from the stove to the sink to the refrigerator.</p> <p>If overhead lighting is scarce, consider using table lamps and even floor lamps. A floor lamp in a kitchen might seem odd at first, but put it at the end of a counter or tucked behind a table, and you'll be grateful for the extra light.</p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/kitchen-countertop-buying-guide-228027/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Kitchen Countertop Buying Guide: Meet the Main Players &amp; Find Your Best Match</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/new-look-kitchen-223288/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">7 Perfect Kitchen Upgrades for a New Look Without Remodeling</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/3-myths-renting-201963/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">&#8216;You&#8217;re Throwing Money Away&#8217; and Other Myths About Renting</a></li> </ul> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>Originally published June 6, 2016. </em></p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=fK1V9BgMwJo:j3clvH9objA:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=fK1V9BgMwJo:j3clvH9objA:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/space-saving-ideas-small-kitchens-228858/feed/ 31 https://www.zillow.com/blog/space-saving-ideas-small-kitchens-228858/ 2019-04-04 21:12 +00:00 2019-04-05 10:12 +13:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=187785 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/loMulFEvKL4/ Home Improvement Home Organization Renting Roommates Roommate Relations: Making Smart Use of Shared Spaces Keeping the peace with your roomies can be as easy as setting expectations and giving everyone their own space. Thu, 04 Apr 2019 15:00:00 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/smart-use-of-shared-spaces-187785/#comments Sarah Pike <p>Renting a home with other people can be stressful. But with careful planning and clear communication, living with others doesn't have to lead to passive-aggressive notes and arguments.</p> <p>Whether you live with your sibling, your bestie or your significant other, try these tips for making smart use of those shared spaces.</p> <h2>Closets</h2> <p>What matters most when sharing <a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/5-tips-to-declutter-in-a-day-215128/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">closet space</a> is equality. No, you don't need to make a line with tape on your closet floor (please don't). But you should stick to your designated areas.</p> <p>Hang vertical cloth shelves in the middle to store your shared towels and extra sheets, while also creating a closet divider. And when you toss your shoes in the closet, make sure they're on your side.</p> <h2>Cabinets</h2> <p>Maximize the cabinet space you're given by adding stackable wire shelving racks. In the kitchen, they&#8217;re great for storing plates on top and bowls below. And under your sink, you can put extra sponges, cleaning rags and garbage bags below with your cleaning spray bottles up top.</p> <p>Storage bins and plastic stackable boxes can also save the day - especially when it comes to bathroom storage. Put your skincare items in one and your dental products in another.</p> <p>These stackable boxes come in all sizes - the ones with more depth can fit your bulkier products, and the shorter boxes are better for smaller items, like your travel-size products.</p> <h2>Pantry</h2> <p>Once you place those stackable wire shelves in your kitchen pantry, you'll soon learn that labels and plastic bins rule.</p> <p>If you decide to share spices and other items like flour, vegetable oil and cooking spray, try arranging them in bins with labels that say "Shared." Use more labels to mark shelves and bins with each roommate&#8217;s name, if you think you'll all need the reminder.</p> <h2>Countertops</h2> <p>Decide with your roommates if it&#8217;s OK to keep items on the kitchen and bathroom counters. It may seem silly to discuss countertop space, but you'll be glad you did.</p> <p>Decide how many and which items you agree to allow on the counters. Does the toaster that you never use drive your roomie crazy? Are you okay with your BFF's curling iron always being on the bathroom counter?</p> <p>Air out your countertop pet peeves - you can always find ways to avoid potential disagreements.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter wp-image-230354" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/GettyImages-517673367-e5f8ae.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="534" /></p> <h2>The shower</h2> <p>Avoid any possible product mix-ups with a couple of shower caddies. Hang one over the shower head, and put another one (or two) with suction cups on the shower wall. Plus, storing your bath products in hanging caddies leaves the corners of your tub easy to clean.</p> <h2>Storage</h2> <p>If your place comes with its own storage space, try using a <a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/sporting-goods-catchall-220812/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">tall shelving unit</a> and dividing the shelves equally among you.</p> <p>If someone ends up slowly taking over the unit, try putting your belongings in labeled plastic bins. If things really get out of hand, see if your storage buddy may be willing to pay a bit more in rent or utilities.</p> <h2>Parking</h2> <p>Your apartment comes with a covered parking spot? Sweet! Oh, it only comes with one parking space? Not so sweet.</p> <p>Try rotating its use every week or month. Or make an arrangement saying that whoever uses the parking spot can pay more in rent each month. Another idea: The roommate with the covered parking spot could do more chores than the other roommates.</p> <p>The key is deciding as a team in advance what's fair - and sticking to it.</p> <h2>Pets</h2> <p>If one of you has a pet, how do you decide where the crate, toy basket, and food and water bowls go? It may make sense to put pet items in common areas, but the pet owner shouldn't assume all roommates are cool with squeaky toys all over the living room floor - no matter how cute that pup is.</p> <p>Just like you'd pick up your things from the living room, you'll want to pick up Fido's stuff too.</p> <h2>Wall space</h2> <p>Don't hang your art in common areas without getting your roommates' opinions first. Turn decorating your walls into a roommate activity. Gather all the art and decorative wall items you want to hang, and have everyone choose their favorites.</p> <p>You can even turn it into a chance to get to know your roommates better. Have a cool story about where you got that tapestry? Got your favorite mural while studying abroad? Tell your roomies all about it - and listen to their stories too. They may be cool with your wall decor once they know the meaning it holds.</p> <p>If all else fails, stick with similar color palettes, and decorate based on shared color groupings. Remember that what doesn't go up in the living room can go up in your room.</p> <h2>Space-saving lifesavers</h2> <p>You can use all the fancy <a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/organizing-secrets-pros-know-204721/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">organization</a> materials you want, but sometimes the basics are best.</p> <ul> <li>Adhesive hooks are great for hanging towels when you need extra bathroom space - or for hanging keys in the entryway.</li> <li>Use shoeboxes to store smaller items like scarves, winter gloves and cosmetics. Label them to make everything easy to find, and you can even decorate them with wrapping paper to pretty them up.</li> <li>Toilet paper rolls are an organizational lifesaver when you have too many cords. Designate each type of cord within one roll, and label them so you never mix up your roommates' cords with yours again.</li> <li>Over-the-door hangers are essential for items like purses and coats. Or try an over-the-door shoe hanger on one side of the door, with your things hung on the other side for double the saved space.</li> <li>Under-the-bed storage containers are key for off-season clothing items or bulky boots that don't seem to fit anywhere else. Your roommate will thank you for the extra closet space.</li> <li>Fabric panels are an inexpensive way to divide a room for added privacy.</li> </ul> <p>Even if the people you live with are not quite as organized as you, rest assured that at least your belongings are contained on their shelves and in their assigned containers. Having smart shared spaces allows you to enjoy your time with your roommates without stressing over whose stuff is whose.</p> <p><em>Looking for more information about renting? Check out our <a href="https://www.zillow.com/rent/guide/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Renters Guide</a>. </em></p> <p><strong>Related</strong>:</p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/10-tips-renting-with-roommate-204521/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">10 Tips for Renting with a Roommate</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/large-items-small-spaces-220378/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">&#8216;Where Should I Keep My&#8230;?&#8217;: Solving the Ultimate Small Space Dilemmas</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/top-10-home-organization-issues-206957/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">10 Ways to Conquer Clutter and Simplify Your Life</a></li> </ul> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>Originally published September 9, 2016.</em></p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=loMulFEvKL4:agrafCUYVZs:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=loMulFEvKL4:agrafCUYVZs:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/smart-use-of-shared-spaces-187785/feed/ 3 https://www.zillow.com/blog/smart-use-of-shared-spaces-187785/ 2019-04-04 15:00 +00:00 2019-04-05 04:00 +13:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514631/comment-tax-deductibility-of-rental-property-upgrades?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Tax+deductibility+of+rental+property+upgrades https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514631/comment-tax-deductibility-of-rental-property-upgrades?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Tax+deductibility+of+rental+property+upgrades COMMENT: Tax deductibility of rental property upgrades <p>Rental property upgrades required by the Healthy Homes minimum standards will make the area of tax deductibility even more thorny, writes Auckland Property Investors Association vice president Peter Lewis&hellip;</p> Thu, 04 Apr 2019 08:04:00 +1200 2019-04-04 08:04 +12:00 2019-04-04 09:04 +13:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=213971 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/wWf3m0SpLVg/ Home Improvement gardening landscaping Spring 5 Tips for Spring Lawn Prep The lush lawn of your spring-loving dreams is just a few steps away. Wed, 03 Apr 2019 13:00:52 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/five-tips-spring-lawn-prep-213971/#comments Steve Asbell <p>Even if your lawn is made up of weeds more than actual grass, you can turn it around with some basic spring maintenance. Try these five tips to get your lawn ready before the weather warms up and the grass (and weeds) leave you in the dust.</p> <h2>Prevent weeds</h2> <p>Proper mowing, irrigation and feeding practices are the best possible <a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/how-to-get-rid-of-weeds-203261/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">weed prevention</a>, but established weed populations require drastic measures.</p> <p>Use a preemergent herbicide to stop warm-season weeds before they sprout. And even a weed-free lawn can easily be undone by nearby weeds and their traveling seeds, so remove any weeds in the garden now so they don't find their way into your lawn.</p> <p>If your lawn has bare spots, fill them in now with sod or seed so weeds don't sprout and get a foothold.</p> <h2>Start your engines</h2> <p>Much like cars, lawnmowers will stop working without routine maintenance. If you haven't already done so in the fall, replace the mower's oil and gas with the types recommended in your mower's instruction manual.</p> <p>This would also be a good time to replace that corroded spark plug and dirty air filter. Add a fuel stabilizer to keep the gas from going stale and harming the mower's engine.</p> <p>A dull mower blade makes your grass more susceptible to disease with each ragged cut it makes, so sharpen the blade with a metal file when it starts to get dull. Clean your mower often to improve performance and prevent corrosion. If you own a riding mower, air up the tires for an even cut and comfortable ride.</p> <h2>Clear out thatch</h2> <p>You know that spongy layer of dead grass that builds up in your lawn? That's thatch. A thin layer of thatch is normal and even healthy, because it protects the soil, roots and beneficial organisms. But when that thatch gets about an inch tall, drought, weeds and other problems develop.</p> <p>Thatch is most likely to build up in lawns that have acidic or compacted soil - or lawns that have been excessively treated with herbicides and pesticides. If thatch is common on your block, prevent it with core aeration. This allows air to reach the soil, promoting organisms that naturally break down thatch. Use a vertical mower or power rake if the thatch is an inch thick or more.</p> <h2>Reseed and resod</h2> <p>None of these tips will do much good without a proper lawn. If your lawn feels beyond hope, consider starting from scratch.</p> <p>If your existing lawn is an annual one, remove it with a sod cutter. Perennial grasses, like Bermuda or St. Augustine grass, are much tougher to remove, so you'll likely have to either solarize with clear plastic sheets for several weeks or resort to an herbicide.</p> <p>Once you&#8217;ve dug up the grass or otherwise eradicated it, replace it with soil and a grass variety appropriate to your region. Plan on setting aside a day or two for installation.</p> <p>Amend the bare soil with topsoil or composted manure, and lay down the sod or planting seeds by following the label instructions. After planting, water it often until the new grass becomes established.</p> <h2>Start good habits</h2> <p>If you're not already following a fertilizing schedule, start one now by following the directions on your product of choice. You will likely forget this schedule after the first feeding, so pencil in the dates on your calendar so you don't get off track.</p> <p>Start the season off right by mowing more often, on a higher setting and in alternating directions. Inspect your sprinklers and pipes for possible breakage - a patch of damp soil or an excessive water bill would be your first clue. If your lawn seems to let into the surrounding landscaping, start edging now to define your boundaries.</p> <p>A string trimmer is fine for maintenance, but cutting through the dirt with it could get messy. Either rent an edger or purchase a handheld half-moon tool to make deep, clean cuts that persist through the year for easier mowing and trimming.</p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/lawn-equipment-buying-guide-229174/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Your Guide to Buying Lawn Care Equipment</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/budget-friendly-curb-appeal-194022/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">8 Curb Appeal Boosters You Can Do in a Weekend</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/summer-prep-for-your-home-226196/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">13 Simple Steps to Prep Your Home for the Best Summer Ever</a></li> </ul> <h6><em>Originally published April 2017.</em></h6> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=wWf3m0SpLVg:r3AsQEuywi4:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=wWf3m0SpLVg:r3AsQEuywi4:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/five-tips-spring-lawn-prep-213971/feed/ 1 https://www.zillow.com/blog/five-tips-spring-lawn-prep-213971/ 2019-04-03 13:00 +00:00 2019-04-04 02:00 +13:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=74089 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/Z5PWDqvqhvk/ Tips & Advice home buying Home selling real estate agents How to Break Up With Your Real Estate Agent Is it OK to break up with your real estate agent? And if so, how can you gracefully end it? Mon, 01 Apr 2019 13:00:36 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/break-up-real-estate-agent-74089/#comments Brendon DeSimone <p>Buying or selling a home rarely happens overnight, and it's not uncommon for buyers or sellers to interface or even work with multiple agents. Best-case scenario, the right agent shows their face early, and the relationship (and transaction) is a huge success.</p> <p>But somewhere along the way, you may find that your relationship with your real estate agent just isn't working anymore. Maybe the agent is moving faster than you'd like. Or they're not as available as you need them to be. Maybe they just don't get you.</p> <p>So what do you do? Is it OK to break up with your real estate agent? And if so, how do you gracefully end it?</p> <p>The answer depends on whether you're working with an agent as a buyer or a seller.</p> <h2>Advice for buyers</h2> <p>Real estate agents earn their commissions from sellers, and the money is split between the sellers&#8217; and buyers&#8217; agents. As a general rule, buyers won't be asked to enter into a contractual or financial agreement with a real estate agent.</p> <p>Instead, a buyer makes a (sometimes nonverbal) handshake agreement with the real estate agent. You're basically agreeing to exclusively rely upon that agent. And that's fair.</p> <p>Agents often work hard and spend a lot of time engaging with buyers, watching the market, writing contracts, showing properties, reviewing disclosures and so on. Imagine how they'd feel after spending months working with a client only to be informed that another agent found them the home they want?</p> <p>Before you shake hands, do your homework. Ask friends for references, and check out <a href="https://www.zillow.com/agent-finder" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">online agent reviews</a>.</p> <p><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/making-most-of-open-house-visit-151896/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Going to open houses</a> is a good way to meet and interview agents who work where you want to buy. Don&#8217;t jump in with the first agent you meet. Like any relationship, start slow and feel it out. It&#8217;s harder to break up with your agent if you&#8217;re deeply engaged.</p> <p>If you're not quite ready to be tied down, it's better not to engage an agent until you <em>are</em> ready. Early on, a good real estate agent should read your situation well and provide the appropriate amount of attention as needed. They'll act as a resource and be available when you need them. Once the search kicks into high gear, agents and buyers will spend lots of time together and communicate 24/7.</p> <p>If you do find that a relationship isn&#8217;t working, be honest and upfront before more time passes. Offer the agent constructive feedback about why it's not working for you.</p> <h2>Advice for sellers</h2> <p>Since the seller pays the real estate agent's commission, the brokerage requires the seller to sign a listing agreement upfront.  During the listing period, you're contractually obligated to work exclusively with the agent and brokerage firm, specifically on the sale of your home.</p> <p>In fact, even if you find a buyer on your own (such as a friend), the listing agent or brokerage firm is still due their commission.</p> <p>Just as a buyer must do their homework, it's even more important for a seller to do their research, given the commitment. Most listing agreements state that if the listing agent brings an offer at the listing price and the seller doesn't accept it, the agent is still due a commission. This scenario happens sometimes when the listing agent and seller aren't getting along.</p> <p>In most situations, if the listing agent isn't doing a good job but there's still time left on the agreement, you should simply tell them it's not working out. A good, fair and honest agent will apologize for not meeting your expectations and will agree to release you from the agreement ahead of schedule. But that's not always the case, and sellers typically respond by no longer agreeing to open houses or considering offers from the agent.</p> <p>Sometimes an agent wants to break up with the seller. Maybe the seller insists on keeping the price of the home too high or isn't cooperating to accommodate showings. The agent simply feels they can't be successful with the seller, no matter how much time they put into the job.</p> <p>If you're a seller whose agent wants out of the agreement because you aren't taking the necessary steps to sell your home, it's best to let them go - and decide if you're <a href="https://www.zillow.com/sellers-guide/should-i-sell-my-house/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">really ready to sell or not</a>.</p> <p><strong>Related</strong>:</p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/5-myths-about-home-selling-148354/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">5 Myths (and 5 Truths) About Selling Your Home</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/sellers-guide/what-makes-a-good-real-estate-agent/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">What Makes a Good Real Estate Agent for Home Sellers</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/sellers-guide/changing-real-estate-agents-seller/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Seller Advice: Changing Real Estate Agents</a></li> </ul> <p><em>Note: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinion or position of Zillow.</em></p> <p><em>Originally published September 2016.</em></p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=Z5PWDqvqhvk:BIH4nUrDIy8:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=Z5PWDqvqhvk:BIH4nUrDIy8:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/break-up-real-estate-agent-74089/feed/ 7 https://www.zillow.com/blog/break-up-real-estate-agent-74089/ 2019-04-01 13:00 +00:00 2019-04-02 02:00 +13:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514497/comment-capital-gain-vs-cash-flow?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Capital+gain+vs+cash+flow https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514497/comment-capital-gain-vs-cash-flow?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Capital+gain+vs+cash+flow COMMENT: Capital gain vs cash flow <p>There are two very different types of property investors and the introduction of a capital gains tax would affect one far more than the other, explains veteran property investor Graeme Fowler.</p> Tue, 12 Mar 2019 09:21:00 +1200 2019-03-12 09:21 +12:00 2019-03-12 10:21 +13:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514445/comment-property-reno-where-are-the-tradies?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Property+reno+-+where+are+the+tradies%3F https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514445/comment-property-reno-where-are-the-tradies?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Property+reno+-+where+are+the+tradies%3F COMMENT: Property reno - where are the tradies? <p>What seemed like a straight-forward renovation job on a rental property left Auckland Property Investors Association vice president Peter Lewis wondering where all the tradies have gone when we need them so much&hellip;</p> Tue, 05 Mar 2019 08:02:00 +1200 2019-03-05 08:02 +12:00 2019-03-05 09:02 +13:00 https://www.zillow.com/digs/guides/?p=1401 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/ZmqutA5A8Po/ Home Improvement home maintenance remodeling Are You Overimproving for Your Neighborhood? Home improvements always pay off come selling time, right? Turns out it's all relative. Mon, 04 Mar 2019 13:59:37 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/over-improving-228853/#comments Erica Sooter <p>We all love a house-flipping reality show - we shout our opinions and weep when we see the final reveal. It&#8217;s an innate human instinct to want to make things better. And when it comes to selling your own home, it&#8217;s often a good instinct to follow.</p> <p>But while it may be OK to max out the budget on a reality TV show, pulling out all the stops in your own home renovation might not be the best choice. Depending on the real estate market, your neighborhood and what buyers are looking for, you may need to do less - or more - than you think.</p> <p>Before you demolish all the walls, take these four considerations into account.</p> <h2>Sellers market vs. buyers market</h2> <p>Does your local market favor buyers or sellers? You can tell the difference by looking at <a href="http://www.zillow.com/sellerlanding/yourhomereport/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">trends on Zillow</a>, talking to a real estate agent or checking out nearby neighborhoods.</p> <p>If a lot of nice for-sale homes in your area haven&#8217;t sold, it&#8217;s likely a buyers market. This means that shoppers have many homes to choose from, so the ones with the nicest updates, lowest prices and better neighborhoods will go first, leaving a lot of homes sitting idle on the market.</p> <p>If homes are selling right and left, then it&#8217;s a sellers market. In this case, there aren&#8217;t as many homes for buyers to choose from, so sellers can often get above asking price as a result of bidding wars.</p> <p>If you&#8217;re thinking about selling your home, understanding what the market is doing will help you determine how much you need to upgrade your home.</p> <h2>Improving in different markets</h2> <p>If it&#8217;s a buyers market, you&#8217;ll likely need to do more to your home to stand out. The average garage door replacement costs around $1,600, but if it makes your home stand out and sell faster, it may be a good move.</p> <p>If it&#8217;s a sellers market, you can get away with upgrading less, since homeowners will be competing for your home regardless of how tricked out it is. Spend your money wisely<strong> </strong>on things like new counters or fixtures, and spruce up the rest with a fresh coat of paint and some elbow grease.</p> <h2>Consider your neighborhood</h2> <p>The next important factor is your neighborhood, because you don&#8217;t want to price yourself out of it. Do you live in a new development? Or an older one where the homes are 40, 50 or 60 years old? Do you have a homeowners association that will limit what you can do? Or can you renovate at will?</p> <p>In older neighborhoods, you don&#8217;t want to renovate your house so much that it looks out of place or becomes a target for theft. You want to find a nice balance.</p> <p>If most homes in your area have dated finishes, focus on a few crucial updates that&#8217;ll help your house stand out <em>and</em> stay within your neighborhood&#8217;s average pricing. People are less willing to buy a $475,000 house in a neighborhood where homes don&#8217;t usually sell for more than $300,000.</p> <p>A good rule of thumb: Don&#8217;t raise your home&#8217;s value any higher than 10 percent of the <a href="http://www.zillow.com/wikipages/Pricing-Your-House-for-Sale/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">average cost of homes</a> in your neighborhood.</p> <p>However, if you live in a nicer area and your house is the shabbiest on the block, you&#8217;ll want to spend a little more to keep up. Take a look at homes in your neighborhood that have sold in the last 90 days (you can find this right <a href="http://www.zillow.com/homes/recently_sold/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">here </a>on Zillow). Emulate the finishes those homes have while remaining within your budget.</p> <h2>Where to invest your money</h2> <p>Give your home the features buyers look for most. Many homeowners look for updated kitchens, master bedrooms and bathrooms. These three spaces alone can sell your home, so consider investing extra money in these areas.</p> <p>If you have additional funds, consider replacing flooring or upgrading small things like lighting, fixtures and doorknobs.</p> <p>Use your budget wisely, and consider going the DIY route - some projects can <a href="https://www.zillow.com/sellers-guide/home-improvements-that-pay-off/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">recoup a large part of your investment</a>! If brand-new kitchen cabinets are out of your budget - or if they&#8217;d price you out of your current neighborhood - consider painting your current ones.</p> <p>Of course, watch for sales or deals on things you can use in your renovations. Regardless of how old or new your neighborhood is, choose timeless styles and colors that will appeal to a wide range of home buyers.</p> <p>If you do your market research and follow the trends, you&#8217;ll end up with a beautifully renovated home that will appeal to a large range of buyers.</p> <p><strong>Related</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/budget-friendly-curb-appeal-194022/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">8 Curb Appeal Boosters You Can Do in a Weekend</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/quiz-renovate-home-or-sell-225199/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Quiz: Should You Renovate Your Home or Sell?</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/prepare-your-house-for-sale-213113/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">3 Must-Do&#8217;s Before Listing Your House for Sale</a></li> </ul> <p><em>Originally published April 25, 2016.</em></p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=ZmqutA5A8Po:ncPK1QDTg84:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=ZmqutA5A8Po:ncPK1QDTg84:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/over-improving-228853/feed/ 5 https://www.zillow.com/blog/over-improving-228853/ 2019-03-04 13:59 +00:00 2019-03-05 02:59 +13:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=181173 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/kTc-cK_RLbc/ Home Improvement decorating Home offices Home Organization Creating a Home(work) Station That Gets Top Marks Good study habits are easier to build when you have a dedicated and attractive spot to hit the books. Tue, 26 Feb 2019 13:00:21 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/creating-homework-station-181173/#comments Kerrie Kelly <p>When was the last time your home workspace or study station inspired you? For most people, the answer is, "Not recently."</p> <p>Whether you&#8217;re prepping an area for your work-from-home days or setting up a spot for young scholars to study , you can kick inspiration into high gear with home office solutions that will get your creative juices flowing again.</p> <h2>Window wonder</h2> <p>It's no secret that sunshine does the body good. Fix up a space near the window so you can soak up plenty of vitamin D while pumping out price lists or writing that term paper.</p> <p>Greenery looks great near a bright area, so a <a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/houseplants-for-low-light-spaces-222066/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">potted plant</a> or two might help naturally bring your space to life.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-229284" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/GettyImages-914953520-1-8b087a.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="531" /></p> <h2>Arts and crafts</h2> <p>The age of DIY is upon us. Embrace the casual-cool vibes and create your very own home desk area.</p> <p>Need a semipermanent to-do list? Try using chalkboard paint to make yourself a giant notepad on a nearby cabinet or a framed chalkboard. Tired of the overdone corkboard for your sticky notes? Framed chicken wire with clothespins makes a more shabby-chic memo board.</p> <p>The possibilities really are endless for this type of style. Just don't let your <a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/tag/diy/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">DIYing</a> get in the way of the tasks you originally sat down to do!</p> <figure id="attachment_181204" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-181204" style="width: 500px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/1031-Fortner-Rd-Lantana-TX-76226/89527440_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><img class="wp-image-181204 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/arts-f185c7.jpg" alt="arts" width="500" height="750" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-181204" class="wp-caption-text">Photo from <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/1031-Fortner-Rd-Lantana-TX-76226/89527440_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Zillow listing</a>.</figcaption></figure> <h2>Collaboration is key</h2> <p>For those less focus-intensive projects, investigate a collaborative workstation with several small spaces or a giant community table. This type of work environment has been popular among small companies and creative agencies for the purpose of bouncing around ideas.</p> <p>If you still want your own personal space, put a divider between you and the other desks for some extra privacy, and take it down when it's time to meet and discuss. You know what they say: Teamwork makes the dream work.</p> <figure id="attachment_181205" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-181205" style="width: 550px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/21-Kensett-Ln-Darien-CT-06820/2111669692_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><img class="wp-image-181205 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/collab-sm-0f42ff.jpg" alt="collab sm" width="550" height="645" /></a><figcaption id="caption-attachment-181205" class="wp-caption-text">Photo from <a href="https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/21-Kensett-Ln-Darien-CT-06820/2111669692_zpid/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Zillow listing</a>.</figcaption></figure> <h2>A clear mind</h2> <p>While many of us would like to think we have complete control of our habit of logging onto Facebook or checking what else our calendar has in store for us, most of us really don't. And the greatest enabler of this sidetracked behavior is a <a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/declutter-for-intentional-home-210492/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">cluttered workspace</a>.</p> <p>Set the stage for a clean slate with a bright white desk and matching chair, a simple light fixture and an inspiring element. Keeping your workstation simple and clutter-free ensures you have a productive day - even if your homework is less than exhilarating.</p> <p>Whether you're up all night cramming for exams or prepping for a work presentation due first thing in the morning, you'll feel more focused and productive by incorporating any of these tips into your workstation.</p> <p><strong>Related</strong>:</p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/top-10-home-organization-issues-206957/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">10 Ways to Conquer Clutter and Simplify Your Life</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/create-a-dedicated-drop-zone-187516/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">3 Steps to Creating an Organized Entryway (Even If You Don&#8217;t Have the Space)</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/self-sabotage-organizing-efforts-210869/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">7 Ways to Self-Sabotage Your Organizing Efforts</a></li> </ul> <p><em>Originally published September 7, 2016.</em></p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=kTc-cK_RLbc:ylDvNSLtQ4Q:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=kTc-cK_RLbc:ylDvNSLtQ4Q:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/creating-homework-station-181173/feed/ 15 https://www.zillow.com/blog/creating-homework-station-181173/ 2019-02-26 13:00 +00:00 2019-02-27 02:00 +13:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=220812 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/8_QtD2TejbQ/ Home Improvement DIY Home Organization With This DIY Sporting Goods Catch-All, Game Day Is No Sweat If you build it, the sporting goods will come (and stay organized too!) Tue, 19 Feb 2019 13:30:18 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/sporting-goods-catchall-220812/#comments Jamie Birdwell-Branson <p>This project will help you organize your garage and become the MVP of <a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/tag/diy/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">DIY projects</a>. With all your sporting gear in the same place, you&#8217;ll always be prepared when someone yells, "Where&#8217;s my basketball?&#8221; (Or volleyball, hockey stick, tennis racket, etc.)</p> <p>See how it&#8217;s done, then follow the step-by-step instructions to build one of your own.</p> <div class="video-container"><iframe width="500" height="375" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/7L6sa8u0u24?feature=oembed&#038;enablejsapi=1&#038;modestbranding=1&#038;rel=0&#038;showinfo=0" frameborder="0" allow="accelerometer; autoplay; encrypted-media; gyroscope; picture-in-picture" allowfullscreen></iframe></div> <h2>1. Find a bookcase</h2> <p>Choose a bookcase with at least three wide shelves so you can store gear in a variety of sizes.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-220814" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/Still1-69abba.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /></p> <h2>2. Add locking wheels</h2> <p>Attach locking wheels to the bottom of the bookcase so you can easily move it around the mudroom or the garage.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-220815" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/Still3-d310fe.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /></p> <h2>3. Drill holes</h2> <p>Drill evenly spaced holes (about four or five, depending on the width of the bookcase) along the top surface of one of the shelves. Keep the holes fairly close to the edge - about one-half inch away or less.</p> <p>On the underside of the shelf below, drill holes to match up exactly with the holes on the shelf above.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-220816" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/Still5-016685.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /></p> <h2>4. Attach bungee cords</h2> <p>Place the bungee cord hooks in the drilled holes, and arrange the cords vertically so they create a net. You want the cords to be pretty taut, so get the right size for your bookcase.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-220817" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/Still7-966d46.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /></p> <h2>5. Mount peg boards</h2> <p>Frame the sides of your bookcase with 1-by-2-inch boards to support peg boards that have been cut to size. Secure the peg boards with a few nails on the top and bottom.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-220819" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/Still8-bbc350.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /></p> <h2>6. Customize with hooks and holders</h2> <p>Place hooks and holders on the peg board so you can hang your tennis rackets, baseball gloves, jerseys, helmets and more.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-220820" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/Still10-047990.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /></p> <h2>7. Load up your catch-all, MVP!</h2> <p>Grab your gear and organize the bins however you see fit. Now all you have to worry about is scoring the winning goal.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-220821" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/Still11-dded6f.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533" /></p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/built-in-shelves-hack-226769/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">A DIY for the Books: How to Get Custom Built-In Shelves on a Budget</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/kids-room-storage-229181/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">A Quick DIY for Space-Saving Kids&#8217; Room Storage</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/building-backyard-fire-pit-219141/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">DIY Backyard Fire Pit: Build It in Just 7 Easy Steps</a></li> </ul> <h6><em>Originally published September 2017.</em></h6> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=8_QtD2TejbQ:zm_y521O5jk:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=8_QtD2TejbQ:zm_y521O5jk:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/sporting-goods-catchall-220812/feed/ 9 https://www.zillow.com/blog/sporting-goods-catchall-220812/ 2019-02-19 13:30 +00:00 2019-02-20 02:30 +13:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=210492 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/BzpPx92KNXs/ Home Improvement Home Organization Meet the Clutter Scale: One Pro's Secret to a More Intentional Home On a scale of 1 to 5, how much do you need to declutter? Dorothy Breininger shares a favorite tip for cleaning up. Mon, 18 Feb 2019 19:54:19 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/declutter-for-intentional-home-210492/#comments DorothyTheOrganizer <p>Although I have always been organized, there were two significant moments in my life that taught me how to manage clutter.</p> <p>The first was when I returned from a backpacking trip around the world. Having visited homes in many developing nations, I no longer wanted to have such excess in my own home. My possessions were organized, but I had too many of them for my taste.</p> <p>After I unpacked from my journey, I began a thorough review of my stuff. I started upstairs, removing unnecessary items floor by floor. By the time I reached the basement, I had enough stuff to set up a second apartment.</p> <p>My second decluttering lesson was right after my divorce. Just months after the split, I was facing bankruptcy. I began my climb out of sudden and severe financial debt while simultaneously making a name for myself in the organizing industry. I hired a top-tier PR agent, but I knew I had to come up with some big bucks to cover his fee and all the expenses that go along with creating a brand. I decided to <a href="https://www.zillow.com/sellers-guide/steps-to-selling-a-house/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">sell my home</a> and everything I owned to make it happen.</p> <p>As I sorted my belongings for a second time, I created the ranking system below to help me decide what to keep and what to toss. It worked beautifully for me, and I think it can work for you too.</p> <h2>The clutter scale</h2> <p><strong>5</strong> - Important items whose place in your home is non-negotiable. For me, this included my green-stained Depression glass, photos, business files, office equipment and car.</p> <p><strong>4</strong> - Items that are difficult to replace and items you use every day. This pile included most of my clothes, some furniture, a favorite sheet set, towels and jewelry.</p> <p><strong>3</strong> - Items you use occasionally but haven&#8217;t used within the last six months.</p> <p><strong>2</strong> - Items you rarely use but feel hesitant to toss.</p> <p><strong>1</strong> - Items you never use, like seasonal items, specialized tools or kitchen gadgets. I got rid of stationery, extra wrapping paper, old boxes and my printer.</p> <p>You know what I found as I used the clutter scale? There were rarely items that rated a 2 or 3. And once I established some criteria, I sorted and purged the 2s and 3s like never before. As you sort your less important items, ask yourself the following questions:</p> <ul> <li>Do I love it?</li> <li>What's the special story behind it?</li> <li>Do I have the space for it?</li> <li>Can I replace it?</li> <li>Can I easily borrow it or rent it if I need it again?</li> <li>Does it support my goals and values?</li> <li>Does it compare to the items I ranked as a 5?</li> </ul> <p>The clutter scale is a great way to get back in touch with your priorities. My priority at the time was starting my business, so I kept the bigger goal in sight and let go of anything that didn&#8217;t support it.</p> <p>What I didn't know then was that I was already practicing what I was going to preach in my business. I learned to organize my life and stuff based on my values. I chose to collect experiences - not things.</p> <p>As you declutter and rank your possessions, don&#8217;t forget to take a few minutes to think about your goals and values. You&#8217;ll find your home to be much more intentional and peaceful if you do!</p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/organizing-secrets-pros-know-204721/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">5 Organizing Secrets Only the Pros Know</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/create-a-dedicated-drop-zone-187516/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">3 Steps to Creating an Organized Entryway (Even If You Don&#8217;t Have the Space)</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/top-10-home-organization-issues-206957/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">10 Home Organization Woes (and How to Fix Them)</a></li> </ul> <h6><em>Originally published January 2017.</em></h6> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=BzpPx92KNXs:ayUCy44Ipts:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=BzpPx92KNXs:ayUCy44Ipts:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/declutter-for-intentional-home-210492/feed/ 10 https://www.zillow.com/blog/declutter-for-intentional-home-210492/ 2019-02-18 19:54 +00:00 2019-02-19 08:54 +13:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=225199 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/f5H4bFzRV4U/ Home Improvement Tips & Advice Home selling homeownership remodeling Quiz: Should You Renovate Your Home or Sell? Fix it up or give it up? See where you really stand with this quiz. Fri, 15 Feb 2019 13:00:39 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/quiz-renovate-home-or-sell-225199/#comments Cat Overman <p>Most homeowners have that one thing about their home that they wish were different.</p> <p>For some, the home&#8217;s fatal flaw exists outside the four walls. Maybe the house backs up to a creek that floods whenever it rains, resulting in a squishy backyard and mosquitoes. Or perhaps the home is located on a busy street that generates too much traffic noise. It could just be that the house is too far from the homeowner&#8217;s job, and the long commute has gotten old.</p> <p>If you&#8217;re feeling discontent with your home, you may be thinking about renovating &#8230; or getting out entirely. But before you knock down walls or put your home on the market, check out our quiz - it could help you think differently about your situation.</p> <div class="riddle_target" style="margin: 0 auto; max-width: 100%; width: 640px;" data-rid-id="142840" data-fg="#0074E4" data-bg="#FFFFFF" data-auto-scroll="true"><script src="https://www.riddle.com/files/js/embed.js"></script><br /> <iframe style="width: 100%; height: 300px; border: 1px solid #cfcfcf;" title="Personality Test - Should You Renovate or Sell?" src="https://www.riddle.com/a/142840?" width="300" height="150"></p> <section> <h2>Should You Renovate or Sell?</h2> <p class="ql-align-center"><em>Note: This quiz is for </em><strong><em>entertainment purposes only</em></strong><em>. The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinion or position of Zillow.</em></p> </section> <section> <h2>Consider renovating.</h2> <p><span style="color: #000000;">If you love your home&#8217;s location-specific qualities (like </span><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/choose-right-school-6-tips-parents-224336/" target="_blank" style="color: #000000;">great local schools</a><span style="color: #000000;"> or access to amenities), you could have a tough time replicating those elsewhere. </span></p> <p><span style="color: #000000;">And if renovating could make your home livable for more than seven years or so, and if you can handle the mess and inconvenience of a big remodeling project, you&#8217;re probably better off staying put and investing in updates that will make the home work for you. </span></p> <p><span style="color: #000000;">Before you begin, be sure to:</span></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/budget-for-home-renovations-177504/" target="_blank" style="color: #000000;">Create a renovation budget</a><span style="color: #000000;"> and determine </span><a href="https://www.zillow.com/mortgage-learning/6-ways-fund-home-renovations/" target="_blank" style="color: #000000;">how you&#8217;ll finance the project</a></li> <li><span style="color: #000000;">Ensure you aren&#8217;t </span><a href="https://www.zillow.com/digs/guides/before-you-sell/over-improving/" target="_blank" style="color: #000000;">overimproving your home for the neighborhood</a><span style="color: #000000;"> (which could make it hard to sell later)</span></li> <li><span style="color: #000000;">Investigate and obtain any necessary permits</span></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/home-renovation-team-trust-201009/" target="_blank" style="color: #000000;">Assemble your renovation team</a></li> </ul> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em style="color: #000000;">Get more </em><a href="https://www.zillow.com/digs/guides/" target="_blank" style="color: #000000;"><em>home improvement inspiration</em></a><em style="color: #000000;">.</em></p> </section> <section> <h3>Think about selling.</h3> <p>If it would take a massive renovation to transform your home into a place you can love, or if the location just isn&#8217;t what you want, you might be better off selling and moving to a more suitable dwelling - provided you plan to stay for a while, which will make the expense and hassle of buying a new home worth the effort.</p> <p>Think selling might be your best option? Be sure to:</p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/sellers-guide/buyers-or-sellers-market/" target="_blank">Research your local market</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/sellers-guide/20-questions-for-seller-agents/" target="_blank">Connect with a good local agent</a></li> <li>Plan any <a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/updates-increase-your-home-value-218078/" target="_blank">updates or repairs</a> buyers will expect</li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/sellers-guide/benefits-of-a-pre-inspection/" target="_blank">Schedule a pre-inspection</a></li> <li>Make a plan for <a href="https://www.zillow.com/sellers-guide/staging-your-home/" target="_blank">staging your home</a></li> </ul> <p>&nbsp;<br /> &nbsp;<br /> &nbsp;<br /> &nbsp;</p> <p><em>Get more </em><a href="https://www.zillow.com/sellers-guide/" target="_blank"><em>tips and advice about selling</em></a><em>.</em></p> </section> <section> <h2>What&#8217;s the real estate market like in your area?</h2> </section> <section> <h3>Which is a bigger issue in your home?</h3> </section> <section> <h3>How does your home compare to your neighbors&#8217; houses?</h3> </section> <section> <h3>If you renovated your home, how much longer could you live there?</h3> </section> <section> <h3>If you moved to a new home, how likely are you to stay there for seven years or longer?</h3> </section> <section> <h3>Do you think your household will grow?</h3> </section> <section> <h3>How do you feel about your current neighbors?</h3> </section> <section> <h3>Do you have an attic, basement or other raw space that could be finished?</h3> </section> <section> <h3>What&#8217;s the first thing you&#8217;d do if you decided to remodel?</h3> </section> <section> <h3>How do you deal with waiting in a long line that&#8217;s moving slowly?</h3> </section> <section> <h3>What would be the main goal of your renovation?</h3> </section> <section> <h3>Which room(s) would you renovate?</h3> </section> <section> <h3>Do you know what a HELOC is?</h3> </section> <section> <h3>Which would you most like your home to have?</h3> </section> <section> <h3>How are the schools in your home&#8217;s district?</h3> </section> <section> <h3>How do you feel when you think about your home?</h3> </section> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p></iframe></div> <p><strong>Related</strong>:</p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/sellers-guide/how-do-i-sell-my-house/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">How Do I Sell My House: Getting Started</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/sellers-guide/should-you-remodel-or-move/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Should You Remodel or Move?</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/budget-friendly-curb-appeal-194022/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">8 Curb Appeal Boosters You Can Do in a Weekend</a></li> </ul> <h6><em>Originally published March 2018.</em></h6> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=f5H4bFzRV4U:rpaaiVvy2CM:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=f5H4bFzRV4U:rpaaiVvy2CM:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/quiz-renovate-home-or-sell-225199/feed/ 53 https://www.zillow.com/blog/quiz-renovate-home-or-sell-225199/ 2019-02-15 13:00 +00:00 2019-02-16 02:00 +13:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=194022 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/IbyMKMfcDxc/ Home Improvement curb appeal Home selling homeownership 8 Curb Appeal Boosters You Can Do in a Weekend Win home shoppers over before they even think about stepping foot inside. Thu, 14 Feb 2019 13:26:20 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/budget-friendly-curb-appeal-194022/#comments Sarah Pike <p>A polished home exterior creates an inviting experience for visitors or passersby, which is especially important if <a href="https://www.zillow.com/sellers-guide/how-to-market-your-home-for-sale/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">your home is on the market</a>.</p> <p>Check out our tips to get the most curb appeal for the lowest cost - while turning your neighbors' heads and getting prospective buyers to your door.</p> <h2>Clean up</h2> <p>The easiest way to enhance curb appeal is dedicating a weekend to deep cleaning your home&#8217;s exterior.</p> <p>Sure, you'll want to trim bushes, sweep and mow your lawn, but there's more to curb appeal than keeping a tidy front yard. Turn the nozzle on your garden hose to the strongest setting and clean off your driveway, sidewalk, windows and fence.</p> <p>If dirt and grime are caked on your home's exterior, you can rent a powerwasher for around $50 to $75 a day. Just avoid areas with caulking, like windows and doors, because you can strip some of the sealing. And as tempting as it may be to powerwash your roof, don&#8217;t do it -  you may damage the shingles&#8217; coating.</p> <p>When it comes to your windows, spraying them with a garden hose isn't enough. For maximum sparkle, clean your windows outside and inside. Instead of relying on a glass cleaner, try a mix of detergent diluted in warm water.</p> <h2>Add shutters</h2> <p>Shutters are an easy way to accentuate the size of your windows. They make your windows look larger and add visual interest by disrupting a bland exterior wall. For maximum curb appeal, choose a shutter color that contrasts with your home&#8217;s color to make it pop.</p> <h2>Paint accent areas</h2> <p>Paint is a quick and easy curb appeal booster. Instead of painting the entire exterior of your home, focus on the trim, door and shutters.</p> <p>You can typically find a gallon of exterior paint for $20 to $30. But before you decide on a color, consider home exterior color trends, along with your home's natural style.</p> <h2>Give your door a face-lift</h2> <p>If you don&#8217;t love your front door, you don't need to dish out loads of money to replace it. Think beyond paint - consider adding molding, which offers a decorative frame for your door that welcomes visitors.</p> <p>You can also add metal house numbers, which you can find for as low as $5 a number. And if seasonally appropriate, consider adding a wreath to your door as a bonus.</p> <h2>Replace your house numbers</h2> <p>If you'd rather not add house numbers to your freshly painted door, here are some alternative DIY ideas:</p> <ul> <li>Paint a terra-cotta planter with your house number and place it by your doorstep.</li> <li>Add house numbers to a post planter near your front porch.</li> <li>Use your front porch stair riser&#8217;s real estate by hanging or painting numbers there.</li> </ul> <h2>Update your light fixtures</h2> <p>Replacing your exterior light fixtures is another curb appeal must. You can usually find outdoor sconces for around $20 at home centers. Just make sure your new light fixtures have the same mounting system. And if you want to save on lighting, a fresh finish can do wonders. Try spray-painting them - a can of spray paint costs around $10.</p> <h2>Keep porch furniture neutral</h2> <p>Just as you would aim to simplify the interior of your home so shoppers can envision themselves living there, the exterior of your home should be neutral and welcoming too.</p> <p>Put your pink flamingo and wind chime collection into storage, and focus on porch decor that offers pops of color and character. You can find brightly colored outdoor chairs or throw pillows for $20 to $30 each.</p> <h2>Don&#8217;t forget the small things</h2> <p>These low-budget fixes make a big impact, so don&#8217;t forget the little details!</p> <ul> <li><strong>Upgrade your mailbox:</strong> Install a new mailbox for under $100, or spray paint your existing mailbox.</li> <li><strong>Plant a tree:</strong> A charming tree can up your curb appeal for as low as $20.</li> <li><strong>Build a tree bench: </strong>If you already have a tree you love, build a bench around it! Great for napping, picnicking or just hiding exposed roots, a wraparound tree bench costs only what you spend on boards and screws.</li> <li><strong>Install flower boxes:</strong> For around $20 each, flower boxes are a quick way to add some life and color to your windows. If flower boxes sound like too much work, try a <a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/grow-a-container-garden-175537/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">container garden</a> in pots by your front porch.</li> <li><strong>Hide eyesores:</strong> Place a small lattice fence or a side of paneling around your air conditioner, and hide your trash bins behind a small fence. You can also hide your hose in a pot or storage bench.</li> </ul> <p><strong>Related</strong>:</p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/5-myths-about-home-selling-148354/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">5 Myths (and 5 Truths) About Selling Your Home</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/sellers-guide/listing-descriptions-that-sell/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Property Descriptions 101: How to Write Listing Descriptions That Sell</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/prepare-your-house-for-sale-213113/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">3 Must-Do&#8217;s Before Listing Your House for Sale</a></li> </ul> <h6><em>Originally published March 2018.</em></h6> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=IbyMKMfcDxc:_ErjrikIKSo:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=IbyMKMfcDxc:_ErjrikIKSo:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/budget-friendly-curb-appeal-194022/feed/ 34 https://www.zillow.com/blog/budget-friendly-curb-appeal-194022/ 2019-02-14 13:26 +00:00 2019-02-15 02:26 +13:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514325/comment-ring-fencing-rules-could-mean-116-000-less-rentals?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Ring-fencing+rules+could+mean+116%2C000+less+rentals https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514325/comment-ring-fencing-rules-could-mean-116-000-less-rentals?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Ring-fencing+rules+could+mean+116%2C000+less+rentals COMMENT: Ring-fencing rules could mean 116,000 less rentals <p>Ring-fencing of rental losses on rental properties could end up resulting in 116,000 fewer rentals, Stop the War on Tenancies spokesman Mike Butler cautions.</p> Tue, 12 Feb 2019 09:29:00 +1200 2019-02-12 09:29 +12:00 2019-02-12 10:29 +13:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=213113 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/RCMBCYdL7m8/ Home Improvement Cleaning curb appeal home maintenance Home selling 3 Must-Do's Before Listing Your House for Sale When it comes to first impressions, the little things make all the difference. Mon, 04 Feb 2019 13:24:40 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/prepare-your-house-for-sale-213113/#comments See Jane Drill <p>Planning to sell your house this year? Now&#8217;s the perfect time to prep it for listing!</p> <p>Set aside a couple of weekends to do the work, and follow these three steps. Then, get ready to make a great impression on potential buyers and cinch the deal.</p> <h2>Step 1: Clean and declutter</h2> <p>It may sound obvious, but the importance of cleaning and decluttering cannot be overstated. Here are some ideas to make this process nearly painless.</p> <ul> <li><strong>Eliminate clutter before cleaning:</strong> This is the time to purge your house of unwanted and unnecessary items. In addition to donating items to charity, consider giving them away through Craigslist or neighborhood sharing groups. Recyclers are often willing to pick up and haul away large metal items for free.</li> <li><strong>Deep clean your house:</strong> This step will probably involve the biggest time investment. Get the whole family involved if you can! Think of this as a pumped-up spring cleaning. Pay special attention to kitchens and bathrooms, and clean the inside and outside of your windows - this makes a striking improvement in the overall appearance of your house.</li> <li><strong>Organize closets, cabinets and drawers:</strong> In this case, out of sight is <em>not</em> out of mind. Many potential buyers will open cabinets and closets, because they are thinking about storage space. Clean and organized storage areas signal to buyers that you take care of the house.</li> </ul> <h2>Step 2: Make small repairs</h2> <p>Take care of these problems before you show the house for the first time. These are all fixes that you can do yourself.</p> <ul> <li>Fix any leaking faucets and running toilets.</li> <li>Replace caulking around tubs, showers and sinks.</li> <li>Freshen up or repair grout as needed.</li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/repair-doorknob-holes-walls-204457/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Repair walls</a> and repaint them in a neutral, generally pleasing color that complements your home.</li> <li>Fix cracked or broken windows.</li> <li>Replace or repair damaged window screens.</li> <li>Replace burned-out lightbulbs.</li> </ul> <h2>Step 3: Go for curb appeal</h2> <p>You want potential buyers to be charmed by the outside of your house so they look forward to coming inside. Extend your pumped-up spring cleaning to the outside of your house too.</p> <ul> <li>Trim bushes, shrubs and trees. Make sure vegetation isn&#8217;t touching your roof or siding.</li> <li>Repair broken downspouts and gutters.</li> <li>If it's appropriate for your yard, apply new mulch, river rock and/or pea gravel. This can do wonders for your landscaping and provide immediate <a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/budget-friendly-curb-appeal-194022/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">curb appeal</a>.</li> <li>Clean and repair concrete areas, such as driveways and walkways. Eliminate any oil or grease stains, and clean out any weeds coming up through the cracks.</li> <li>If it's seasonally appropriate, put out some pots of annuals, which will maintain their color for the season. Freshen up your doorstep with a new welcome mat and make sure the house numbers are easy to see.</li> </ul> <p>With just a moderate amount of effort, you can make your house beautiful and welcoming, both inside and out.</p> <p><em>Ready to put your home on the market? Check out our <a href="https://www.zillow.com/sellers-guide/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Home Sellers Guide</a> for more tips and resources.</em></p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/5-myths-about-real-estate-agents-227286/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Don&#8217;t Believe These 5 Myths About Real Estate Agents</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/5-myths-about-home-selling-148354/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">5 Myths (and 5 Truths) About Selling Your Home</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/neighbors-matter-when-selling-213862/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">When Selling a Home, the Neighbors Matter</a></li> </ul> <h6><em>Originally published March 2017.</em></h6> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=RCMBCYdL7m8:nTu0ViBzTa0:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=RCMBCYdL7m8:nTu0ViBzTa0:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/prepare-your-house-for-sale-213113/feed/ 25 https://www.zillow.com/blog/prepare-your-house-for-sale-213113/ 2019-02-04 13:24 +00:00 2019-02-05 02:24 +13:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=215734 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/QskduTqpK0M/ Unique Homes historic homes unique homes From Haylofts to Hardwoods: How One Family Salvaged a Historic Barn Great-grandparents milked cows here. A father and daughter both played in the hayloft as kids. Now a new generation runs barefoot on its wood. Thu, 31 Jan 2019 16:46:02 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/salvaging-a-family-barn-215734/#comments Lindsay Cohen <p>There's a century of history woven into the floors of a contemporary home east of Seattle: golden planks, shiny blondes and the occasional knotted gray.</p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">It's just how Amanda Gatlin wanted it</span><span style="font-weight: 400;"> - even if she didn&#8217;t expect it would involve recycling an entire Mississippi barn, with pieces dating back to when Woodrow Wilson was president.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"It was my great-grandfather and grandfather and a bunch of people in the community who helped build it," said Gatlin, referring to the barn 2,300 miles away. "Some of the pieces of wood are 100-plus years old."</span></p> <p><img class="wp-image-218246 size-full aligncenter" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/gatlin-barn-135f2f.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="525" /></p> <p>What started out as a small undertaking - Gatlin and her husband, Jeff Layton, peeling away a couple wood slabs for a picture frame or accent wall in their Northwest new construction - quickly grew into something more.</p> <p>"I don't know how it transitioned from taking a few pieces to taking down the whole barn," said Jeff. "Amanda's dad talked to the landowner, and they said, 'You can come and take the whole thing.' That evolved into, &#8216;Gosh, let's <em>salvage</em> this thing.&#8217;"</p> <p><img class="wp-image-218222 size-full aligncenter" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/LEAVEN-5-5a04b2.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="531" /></p> <h2>&#8216;I called it my clubhouse&#8217;</h2> <p>In 1912, Amanda&#8217;s great-grandparents started a farm in rural Choctaw County, Mississippi, about two hours south of Memphis. They ran a small dairy operation while growing corn and cotton. In 1949, the family built a large wooden barn on the same piece of land.</p> <p>"The lumber was primarily white oak," said Boyd Gatlin, Amanda's father. "I think we kept three jersey cows and a bull. We would hand-milk in the morning, and then we sold it."</p> <p>"I grew up drinking raw milk. That's why I have such a great immune system," he joked.</p> <p><img class="wp-image-218223 size-full aligncenter" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/IMG_3099-5d0dbf.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="600" /></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Boyd played in the barn as a child, jumping out of the hayloft or getting stung by wasps in the summer. His family eventually moved away, but they later learned the new owner added to the barn using wood from Boyd's grandparents' home nearby.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"So there are some unusual materials," Boyd said, "some of which had square nails, indicating they were more than 100 years old."</span></p> <p><img class="wp-image-218224 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/DSC_5652-e2c4e4.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="607" /></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The Gatlins repurchased the land when Amanda was 7, using it as a country home to spend weekends or vacations. The sale allowed her to play in the same barn her father played in as a kid.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"I remember sitting up in that loft. I called it my clubhouse," she recalled. "You could dangle your legs over the side and look out onto the other house on the property - into the tall grass."</span></p> <h2>&#8216;We were swinging sledgehammers&#8217;</h2> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">When Amanda and Jeff set out to salvage the barn in 2016, it no longer belonged to her family, but they struck an agreement with the landowner to take it apart. They booked a flight from Seattle to Mississippi for September, hoping Mother Nature would give them a break from the unrelenting summers of the South. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">As with many aspects of the project, it was a lot more complicated than one might expect.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"It was 95 degrees, super high humidity - it was just scorching hot," Jeff recalled. "We were swinging sledgehammers, and it was by hand. Everything was by hand."</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The couple had done their research. A lot of people, it turns out, take apart barns for a living.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"[Other people are] using cherry pickers and forklifts. We didn't have access to that," Jeff said. "But as it turns out, it all came apart pretty easily. No electricity. It was all done by hand."</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The duo used sledgehammers to take the barn down, piece by piece. Relatives and neighbors joined in for days at a time. A tornado that hit the area a few years back had loosened up some of the planks, making it a little easier.</span></p> <div class="video-container"><iframe width="500" height="281" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/hEleOiUdzv0?feature=oembed&#038;enablejsapi=1&#038;modestbranding=1&#038;rel=0&#038;showinfo=0" frameborder="0" allow="accelerometer; autoplay; encrypted-media; gyroscope; picture-in-picture" allowfullscreen></iframe></div> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">They got lucky, they say, that there were no menacing bugs or wasps. They found some ants - and the occasional relic.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"Sometimes we found bullets inside [the wood]," Jeff recalled. "Apparently it's really common in the South to go shooting at old barns."</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">It took the pair a full two weeks to take the building apart and remove the nails by hand. In the process, they discovered the barn was more than 90 percent hardwoods, forming a solid base for their Seattle home&#8217;s new floors.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">They also discovered something else: the importance of family.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"One huge benefit of doing all this labor is that we've bonded with family," Amanda recalled. "You sweat together, you have lunch together. It's an amazing bonding experience."</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Long hours toiling in the hot Mississippi sun sparked great stories of the family's deep roots. Amanda's father shared tales of living on the farm as a child. A cousin talked about flying helicopters in the Vietnam War. Another cousin drove up from Florida and helped for three days, along with her husband.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"It created opportunities that we would not have had otherwise," Jeff added.</span></p> <div class="owl-carousel"><img width="800" height="531" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/DSC_5615-53d201.jpg" class="owl-lazy" alt="" data-src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/DSC_5615-53d201.jpg" /><img width="800" height="600" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/IMG_3143-6fc7f8.jpg" class="owl-lazy" alt="" data-src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/IMG_3143-6fc7f8.jpg" /><img width="800" height="531" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/DSC_5700-69d8b0.jpg" class="owl-lazy" alt="" data-src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/DSC_5700-69d8b0.jpg" /><img width="800" height="530" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/DSC_5717-10ffea.jpg" class="owl-lazy" alt="" data-src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/DSC_5717-10ffea.jpg" /><img width="800" height="531" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/DSC_5755-81c34a.jpg" class="owl-lazy" alt="" data-src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/DSC_5755-81c34a.jpg" /><img width="800" height="531" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/DSC_5793-cb9211.jpg" class="owl-lazy" alt="" data-src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/DSC_5793-cb9211.jpg" /><img width="800" height="459" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/DSC_5579-6c9587.jpg" class="owl-lazy" alt="" data-src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/DSC_5579-6c9587.jpg" /><img width="800" height="531" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/DSC_5578-ff6d9f.jpg" class="owl-lazy" alt="" data-src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/DSC_5578-ff6d9f.jpg" /><img width="800" height="531" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/DSC_5588-b427bf.jpg" class="owl-lazy" alt="" data-src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/DSC_5588-b427bf.jpg" /><img width="800" height="535" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/DSC_5647-1754d9.jpg" class="owl-lazy" alt="" data-src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/DSC_5647-1754d9.jpg" /><img width="800" height="531" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/DSC_5637-e0a3fd.jpg" class="owl-lazy" alt="" data-src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/DSC_5637-e0a3fd.jpg" /></div> <h2>&#8216;He was telling me stories from the Navy&#8217;</h2> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Once the wood was taken apart, it had to be milled and transported across the country. A local Mississippi mill, dating back to 1875, sanded down the boards and created tongue-and-groove joints, costing the family about $6,000.</span></p> <p>"A lot of the pieces we were pulling down had that gray patina on it. The mill guys said that 20 years ago you couldn't give it away," Jeff said. "But now it has that aged look people are really looking for."</p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Jeff planned to drive the wood across the country. His father, who also lives near Seattle, was planning to meet him in Arkansas.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"It was quite an adventure. The day I left Mississippi, there were all these tornado warnings. There were tornadoes touching down around me, and it was really dark," he recalls. "I was thinking, 'What am I doing? What have I done?'"</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Jeff and his father drove through the South to escape the cold winter weather. The duo ended up having their own family experience getting the hardwoods back to the West Coast.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"He was telling me stories from the Navy. We talked politics and religion," Jeff added. "I got to spend all this great time with my dad."</span></p> <figure id="attachment_216715" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-216715" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img class="wp-image-216715 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/LEAVEN-2-b570b2.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="531" /><figcaption id="caption-attachment-216715" class="wp-caption-text">Amanda working on the hardwoods in her new home in Plain, Washington.</figcaption></figure> <h2>&#8216;Putting a puzzle together&#8217;</h2> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">With the wood safely back in Washington, the couple stored it for the winter, enduring subzero temperatures. They placed it in the garage of their rental home, covering the pieces with plastic and putting a heater in the room to keep the moisture down.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Before installing the wood, they sprayed it with an insecticide. The duo worked 12-hour days, laying out the floors in the main rooms, along the stairs and in a couple of small loft spaces.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">They were working with five different board widths, along with different wood species. The couple loved the look - even at the risk of having the boards expand and contract at different rates.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"You basically start putting a puzzle together," Jeff says. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">That patchwork meant hiding some Easter eggs throughout the house - the couple found a smiley face in one plank of wood, placing it outside their son's room.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"We would find different knots that look like things, [such as] an Eiffel Tower. We have a room that has two bears in it. We have one that looks like a wine spill," Jeff says.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The installation, from bare floor to stained, finished wood, took the family about 2 1/2 weeks.</span></p> <div class="owl-carousel"><img width="800" height="531" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/LEAVEN-3-332bf8.jpg" class="owl-lazy" alt="" data-src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/LEAVEN-3-332bf8.jpg" /><img width="800" height="600" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/LEAVEN-8-b2f0d5.jpg" class="owl-lazy" alt="" data-src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/LEAVEN-8-b2f0d5.jpg" /><img width="800" height="531" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/LEAVEN-4-505e35.jpg" class="owl-lazy" alt="" data-src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/LEAVEN-4-505e35.jpg" /><img width="800" height="531" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/DSC_8333-ff95cf.jpg" class="owl-lazy" alt="" data-src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/DSC_8333-ff95cf.jpg" /><img width="800" height="531" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/LEAVEN-7-16920f.jpg" class="owl-lazy" alt="" data-src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/LEAVEN-7-16920f.jpg" /><img width="800" height="531" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/DSC_8296-64735d.jpg" class="owl-lazy" alt="" data-src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/DSC_8296-64735d.jpg" /><img width="800" height="600" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/IMG_4960-042d3f.jpg" class="owl-lazy" alt="" data-src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/IMG_4960-042d3f.jpg" /><img width="800" height="600" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/IMG_4948-ccbec4.jpg" class="owl-lazy" alt="" data-src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/IMG_4948-ccbec4.jpg" /></div> <h2>&#8216;A good substitute&#8217;</h2> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The couple is now fully moved into their 3-bedroom, 3-bathroom home and ready to welcome guests over the summer, when sunshine brings warm weather and ideal conditions for hiking, rafting and barbecues.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">It wasn't the least expensive way to put floors down, added Boyd Gatlin, Amanda's father, but it is certainly special.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"In a nutshell, their flooring was quite expensive, but it is like no other in that it carries family memories," he said. "We had a house fire in 1960 that destroyed all family heirlooms, so Amanda and her cousin both felt the barn wood would be a good substitute."</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Not all the wood was solid enough for the floors. Some of it became the lining of the master bath; the couple is also talking about doing some accent walls in wood.</span></p> <figure id="attachment_218257" aria-describedby="caption-attachment-218257" style="width: 800px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img class="wp-image-218257 size-full" src="https://wp.zillowstatic.com/1/DSC_8353-f00a1a.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="531" /><figcaption id="caption-attachment-218257" class="wp-caption-text">The family&#8217;s nearly complete home, about two hours east of Seattle.</figcaption></figure> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Boyd commissioned two paintings of the barn from a relative. The family plans to build a picture frame out of the leftover wood and some of the square nails. Even the rusty old barn roof will be put to good use as siding on Jeff and Amanda's home.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Most importantly, the family loves to share stories about how their hardwood floors were more than 100 years in the making.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"We've been blown away by the results," he said.</span></p> <p><em>Photos by Jeff Layton, Amanda Gatlin and Boyd Gatlin.</em></p> <p><em>You can follow Jeff and Amanda&#8217;s progress on their blog, <a href="http://www.marriedtoadventure.com/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow noopener noreferrer">Married to Adventure</a>.</em></p> <p><strong>Related:</strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/historic-farmhouse-luxury-barn-208735/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">This Philadelphia Farmhouse Is a Historic Stunner</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/historic-vermont-estate-221014/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">1800s Estate Proves History Is Anything But Drab</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/living-legacy-ross-hand-mansion-205906/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Living Legacy: Making a Family Home in a Historic Mansion</a></li> </ul> <h6><em>Originally published June 2017.</em></h6> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=QskduTqpK0M:2WDtY8RBnXE:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=QskduTqpK0M:2WDtY8RBnXE:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/salvaging-a-family-barn-215734/feed/ 9 https://www.zillow.com/blog/salvaging-a-family-barn-215734/ 2019-01-31 16:46 +00:00 2019-02-01 05:46 +13:00 https://www.zillow.com/blog/?p=168891 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/ZillowBlog/~3/-hhk9fWKYVo/ Tips & Advice historic homes home buying Victorian homes Is Buying a Historic Home Right for You? Hold on there, architecture aficionado! Consider these factors before making history your home. Thu, 31 Jan 2019 13:25:48 Z https://www.zillow.com/blog/buying-home-in-historic-district-168891/#comments Brendon DeSimone <p>Some home buyers want new, modern and move-in ready. Others prefer older homes, with character and charm they can't find in new construction. If you&#8217;re interested in historic homes, take these factors into consideration as you shop.</p> <h2>Historic neighborhoods often impose restrictions</h2> <p>Many towns throughout the U.S. have zoning and planning commissions that, among other things, set out to preserve and protect historic homes and neighborhoods.</p> <p>As a result, renovating and altering a historic home - particularly the building&#8217;s facade - will require a separate layer of approval and sometimes bureaucracy. If you buy a 100-year-old home, you may not be able to renovate it the way you want, and that is a serious consideration.</p> <p>Some landmark or historic districts retain an immense amount of control. As a result, renovations and planning can take longer and cost more. If you&#8217;re purchasing a historic home with intentions to renovate, you should consult both an architect and town officials.</p> <h2>Recreating architecture from the past can be challenging - and expensive</h2> <p>Let&#8217;s consider the example of <a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/victorian-homes/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Victorian-era homes</a>. Contractors and home builders constructed Victorian homes through the mid to late 19th century, often with materials that are no longer in use today.</p> <p>If you buy a home in less-than-perfect condition, finding the wainscoting, picture rails, crown moldings, and richly decorative and ornate features common in Victorian architecture can be tricky. Architectural salvage companies can track down these materials, but there&#8217;s often a steep cost attached.</p> <h2>Repair and maintenance needs could be extensive</h2> <p>Most buyers want move-in ready homes because they don't have the time, money or energy to embark on a renovation project. These buyers also don't want to be burdened with systems going out or having to live with older or outdated technology. For them, it's a quality of life issue.</p> <p>If you want a historic home, you need to have a maintenance strategy in mind. Unless you plan to do major renovations or updates (subject to any landmark or historic area regulations), you have to be ready to address issues that arise. Broken systems, leaks or flaws mean time and money.</p> <p>For history buffs, no amount of time commitment or money will stand between them and a one-of-a-kind home. That person appreciates the architecture and knows that intensive maintenance is par for the course. If you don't share that appreciation, a historic home is not right for you.</p> <p><strong>Related</strong>:</p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/historic-connecticut-home-228001/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">This Historic Connecticut Home Once Hosted a Dancing George Washington</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/living-legacy-ross-hand-mansion-205906/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Living Legacy: Making a Family Home in a Historic Mansion</a></li> <li><a href="https://www.zillow.com/blog/historic-vermont-estate-221014/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">1800s Estate Proves History Is Anything But Drab</a></li> </ul> <p><em>Note: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinion or position of Zillow.</em></p> <h6><em>Originally published February 2015.</em></h6> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=-hhk9fWKYVo:wHDiaDQN4eg:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?a=-hhk9fWKYVo:wHDiaDQN4eg:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/ZillowBlog?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> </div> https://www.zillow.com/blog/buying-home-in-historic-district-168891/feed/ 23 https://www.zillow.com/blog/buying-home-in-historic-district-168891/ 2019-01-31 13:25 +00:00 2019-02-01 02:25 +13:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514150/comment-how-to-fix-the-housing-crisis?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+How+to+fix+the+housing+crisis https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514150/comment-how-to-fix-the-housing-crisis?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+How+to+fix+the+housing+crisis COMMENT: How to fix the housing crisis <p>Dealing with the housing &ldquo;crisis&rdquo; doesn&rsquo;t need rocket science, just a clearly articulated set of steps and fast action, argues property commentator Ashley Church.</p> Thu, 10 Jan 2019 08:00:00 +1200 2019-01-10 08:00 +12:00 2019-01-10 09:00 +13:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514161/the-outlook-for-2019?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=The+outlook+for+2019 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514161/the-outlook-for-2019?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=The+outlook+for+2019 The outlook for 2019 <p>2019 is set to be a year of massive change as the Government&rsquo;s suite of housing and tax policies start to bed in. Here&rsquo;s what property market commentators have to say on the coming year&hellip;</p> Thu, 03 Jan 2019 12:18:00 +1200 2019-01-03 12:18 +12:00 2019-01-03 13:18 +13:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514098/desperately-seeking-answers?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=Desperately+seeking+answers https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514098/desperately-seeking-answers?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=Desperately+seeking+answers Desperately seeking answers <p>Looking for a straight answer from MBIE&rsquo;s Tenancy Compliance and Investigation Team? If you are a landlord, don&rsquo;t expect too much clarity.</p> Tue, 18 Dec 2018 08:30:00 +1200 2018-12-18 08:30 +12:00 2018-12-18 09:30 +13:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514082/what-lies-ahead-in-2019?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=What+lies+ahead+in+2019++ https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514082/what-lies-ahead-in-2019?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=What+lies+ahead+in+2019++ What lies ahead in 2019 <p>Wondering what is in store for residential and commercial property across the spectrum in the coming year? Here&rsquo;s what Colliers International New Zealand&rsquo;s have to say in their annual predictions&hellip;</p> Wed, 12 Dec 2018 07:59:00 +1200 2018-12-12 07:59 +12:00 2018-12-12 08:59 +13:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514032/comment-setting-policies-good-practice-for-landlords?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Setting+policies+good+practice+for+landlords https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976514032/comment-setting-policies-good-practice-for-landlords?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Setting+policies+good+practice+for+landlords COMMENT: Setting policies good practice for landlords <p>Landlords need to establish strict policies around their rental properties rather than just winging it, Auckland Property Investors Association vice president Peter Lewis believes&hellip;</p> Tue, 04 Dec 2018 11:01:00 +1200 2018-12-04 11:01 +12:00 2018-12-04 12:01 +13:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513993/comment-embedded-networks-what-to-watch-out-for?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Embedded+networks+-+what+to+watch+out+for https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513993/comment-embedded-networks-what-to-watch-out-for?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Embedded+networks+-+what+to+watch+out+for COMMENT: Embedded networks - what to watch out for <p>Developers are increasingly seeking to maintain control of embedded networks in apartments and that means both buyers and body corporates need to know what to watch out for, Auckland District Law Society president Joanna Pidgeon explains.</p> Thu, 29 Nov 2018 08:35:00 +1200 2018-11-29 08:35 +12:00 2018-11-29 09:35 +13:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513944/comment-war-on-tenancies-should-stop?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+War+on+tenancies+should+stop https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513944/comment-war-on-tenancies-should-stop?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+War+on+tenancies+should+stop COMMENT: War on tenancies should stop <p>Life for rental property owners may become tougher as Labour&rsquo;s newbie Housing Minister Phil Twyford tries to &ldquo;make life better for renters&rdquo;, Stop the War on Tenancies founder Mike Butler warns.</p> Wed, 21 Nov 2018 09:00:00 +1200 2018-11-21 09:00 +12:00 2018-11-21 10:00 +13:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513873/comment-landlording-is-a-business?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Landlording+is+a+business https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513873/comment-landlording-is-a-business?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Landlording+is+a+business COMMENT: Landlording is a business <p>Governments from both sides of the political equation have failed to recognise residential landlording as a business - but it is, argues Auckland Property Investors Association vice president Peter Lewis.</p> Tue, 06 Nov 2018 13:22:00 +1200 2018-11-06 13:22 +12:00 2018-11-06 14:22 +13:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513837/comment-reforms-would-increase-rental-shortage?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Reforms+would+increase+rental+shortage https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513837/comment-reforms-would-increase-rental-shortage?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Reforms+would+increase+rental+shortage COMMENT: Reforms would increase rental shortage <p>Feelings on tenancy law reform continue to run high as MBIE considers submissions on the Government&rsquo;s proposals. Here&rsquo;s a summary of what landlord Naveen Goel had to say in his&hellip;</p> Wed, 31 Oct 2018 11:15:00 +1200 2018-10-31 11:15 +12:00 2018-10-31 12:15 +13:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513803/comment-have-we-hit-the-bottom?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Have+we+hit+the+bottom%3F https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513803/comment-have-we-hit-the-bottom?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Have+we+hit+the+bottom%3F COMMENT: Have we hit the bottom? <p>It looks like New Zealand&#39;s property market may have reached a floor, and the worst could be over for property market activity, argues CoreLogic&#39;s head of research Nick Goodall.&nbsp;</p> Thu, 25 Oct 2018 09:12:00 +1200 2018-10-25 09:12 +12:00 2018-10-25 10:12 +13:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513741/comment-reform-word-games?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Reform+word+games https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513741/comment-reform-word-games?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+Reform+word+games COMMENT: Reform word games <p>Everyone is talking about residential rental reform at the moment - or are they? Here&#39;s what Auckland Property Investors Association vice president Peter Lewis has to say about it...&nbsp;</p> Fri, 12 Oct 2018 12:54:00 +1200 2018-10-12 12:54 +12:00 2018-10-12 13:54 +13:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513709/comment-what-bad-tenant-tales-are-really-saying?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+What+%E2%80%9Cbad+tenant%E2%80%9D+tales+are+really+saying https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513709/comment-what-bad-tenant-tales-are-really-saying?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=COMMENT%3A+What+%E2%80%9Cbad+tenant%E2%80%9D+tales+are+really+saying COMMENT: What “bad tenant” tales are really saying <p>Tales about nightmare tenants have been rife in the media of late but such stories are not new &ndash; so does the sudden deluge indicate that landlords have reached breaking point, Miriam Bell asks.</p> Tue, 09 Oct 2018 10:00:00 +1200 2018-10-09 10:00 +12:00 2018-10-09 11:00 +13:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513694/addressing-tenancy-law-reform?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=Addressing+tenancy+law+reform https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513694/addressing-tenancy-law-reform?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=Addressing+tenancy+law+reform Addressing tenancy law reform Tenancy law reform is a hot topic at the moment. Here’s some thoughts on the Government’s proposed changes from Kishan Lal of Clarke Group Property Management… Tue, 25 Sep 2018 08:00:00 +1200 2018-09-25 08:00 +12:00 2018-09-25 08:00 +12:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513685/rental-wof-won-t-help-affordability?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=Rental+WoF+won%27t+help+affordability https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513685/rental-wof-won-t-help-affordability?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=Rental+WoF+won%27t+help+affordability Rental WoF won't help affordability The Green Party is again calling for the introduction of a rental Warrant of Fitness (WoF). But NZ Property Investors Federation executive officer Andrew King is questioning that call... Sun, 09 Sep 2018 12:00:00 +1200 2018-09-09 12:00 +12:00 2018-09-09 12:00 +12:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513671/a-different-system-the-rental-market-in-scandinavia?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=A+different+system%3A+the+rental+market+in+Scandinavia https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513671/a-different-system-the-rental-market-in-scandinavia?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=A+different+system%3A+the+rental+market+in+Scandinavia A different system: the rental market in Scandinavia European rental models are often looked to as ones that New Zealand could learn from. That prompted Auckland Property Investors Association vice-president Peter Lewis to take a close look at Sweden's rental market. Wed, 22 Aug 2018 10:00:00 +1200 2018-08-22 10:00 +12:00 2018-08-22 10:00 +12:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513657/how-to-profit-from-the-new-plan?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=How+to+profit+from+the+new+plan https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513657/how-to-profit-from-the-new-plan?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=How+to+profit+from+the+new+plan How to profit from the new plan The Super City’s new Unitary Plan provides interesting reading for Auckland property owners. Could you be an “accidental investor”? Hamish Firth from Mt Hobson Group tells all. Mon, 06 Aug 2018 09:00:00 +1200 2018-08-06 09:00 +12:00 2018-08-06 09:00 +12:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513638/flawed-rental-policy-not-the-answer?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=Flawed+rental+policy+not+the+answer https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513638/flawed-rental-policy-not-the-answer?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=Flawed+rental+policy+not+the+answer Flawed rental policy not the answer Renters United's plan to "fix" New Zealand's "broken" rental laws is poorly thought out and will negatively affect everyone, NZ Property Investors Federation executive officer Andrew King argues... Fri, 13 Jul 2018 06:00:00 +1200 2018-07-13 06:00 +12:00 2018-07-13 06:00 +12:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513629/tax-working-group-agrees-property-fairly-taxed?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=Tax+working+group+agrees+property+fairly+taxed https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513629/tax-working-group-agrees-property-fairly-taxed?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=Tax+working+group+agrees+property+fairly+taxed Tax working group agrees property fairly taxed Claims that rental property is undertaxed are based on flawed assumptions and the Tax Working Group agrees, the NZ Property Investors Federation says... Wed, 04 Jul 2018 10:00:00 +1200 2018-07-04 10:00 +12:00 2018-07-04 10:00 +12:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513626/is-vaping-a-new-risk-for-landlords?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=Is+vaping+a+new+risk+for+landlords%3F+ https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513626/is-vaping-a-new-risk-for-landlords?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=Is+vaping+a+new+risk+for+landlords%3F+ Is vaping a new risk for landlords? <p>With many cigarette smokers switching to vaping, does this pose a new risk for landlords? Dr Marewa Glover argues that it does not.</p> Mon, 02 Jul 2018 11:00:00 +1200 2018-07-02 11:00 +12:00 2018-07-02 11:00 +12:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513619/correct-facts-on-tax-rental-properties-nzpif?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=Correct+facts+on+tax+%26+rental+properties+-+NZPIF https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513619/correct-facts-on-tax-rental-properties-nzpif?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=Correct+facts+on+tax+%26+rental+properties+-+NZPIF Correct facts on tax & rental properties - NZPIF The NZ Property Investors Federation has produced research which shows that property investors pay their fair share of tax... Wed, 20 Jun 2018 11:00:00 +1200 2018-06-20 11:00 +12:00 2018-06-20 11:00 +12:00 https://www.nzherald.co.nz/property-infographics/news/article.cfm?c_id=1503298&objectid=12073000&ref=rss newsfeeds@nzherald.co.nz 'I thought I was going to have a nervous breakdown': Retiree on battle with Ng&#257;ti Wh&#257;tua over demolished home Once she decided retirement village life was for her, Sandra Pearce, 76, chose an Eastcliffe place in Auckland's Or&#257;kei, bought three years ago for $780,000."I thought I'd treat myself. I just loved looking out every single... Tue, 19 Jun 2018 09:04:30 +1200 2018-06-19 09:04 +12:00 2018-06-19 09:04 +12:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513538/affordable-housing-in-auckland-now-doable?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=Affordable+housing+in+Auckland+now+doable https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513538/affordable-housing-in-auckland-now-doable?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=Affordable+housing+in+Auckland+now+doable Affordable housing in Auckland now doable As a property lender, we believe a big part of our future will be backing affordable housing developments in Auckland thanks to the Unitary Plan which now makes them a lot more doable. Wed, 21 Mar 2018 12:00:00 +1200 2018-03-21 12:00 +12:00 2018-03-21 13:00 +13:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513448/national-median-reaches-record-high?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=National+median+reaches+record+high https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513448/national-median-reaches-record-high?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=National+median+reaches+record+high National median reaches record high REINZ's October figures show price rises in every region apart from Auckland and Nelson. Wed, 15 Nov 2017 00:00:00 +1200 2017-11-15 00:00 +12:00 2017-11-15 01:00 +13:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513447/october-results-a-mixed-bag?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=October+results+a+mixed+bag https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513447/october-results-a-mixed-bag?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=October+results+a+mixed+bag October results a mixed bag Harcourts figures for October show a housing market that is slowing down, but still positive for investors according to CEO Chris Kennedy. Tue, 14 Nov 2017 00:00:00 +1200 2017-11-14 00:00 +12:00 2017-11-14 01:00 +13:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513408/the-auckland-housing-crisis-not-even-half-the-numbers?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=The+Auckland+housing+crisis+-+not+even+half+the+numbers https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513408/the-auckland-housing-crisis-not-even-half-the-numbers?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=The+Auckland+housing+crisis+-+not+even+half+the+numbers The Auckland housing crisis - not even half the numbers Auckland Housing Summit organiser, Leonie Freeman, crunches the city's housing numbers to get a progress report on solving the crisis... Tue, 19 Sep 2017 12:00:00 +1200 2017-09-19 12:00 +12:00 2017-09-19 12:00 +12:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513343/rents-a-mixed-bag-across-new-zealand?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=Rents+a+mixed+bag+across+New+Zealand https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513343/rents-a-mixed-bag-across-new-zealand?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=Rents+a+mixed+bag+across+New+Zealand Rents a mixed bag across New Zealand Year on year growth in rental prices has varied across the regions but the median rent hasn't budged in the last six months, according to the latest Trade Me Property Rental Index. Tue, 25 Jul 2017 10:02:25 +1200 2017-07-25 10:02 +12:00 2017-07-25 10:02 +12:00 https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513240/combating-auckland-s-housing-crisis?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=Combating+Auckland%27s+housing+crisis https://www.landlords.co.nz/article/976513240/combating-auckland-s-housing-crisis?utm_source=LL&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=Combating+Auckland%27s+housing+crisis Combating Auckland's housing crisis The number of houses being built is the key to the problem and the solution of Auckland's housing shortage. Thu, 04 May 2017 06:00:00 +1200 2017-05-04 06:00 +12:00 2017-05-04 06:00 +12:00