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. Appraisal management company (AMC): An institution operated independently of a lender that, once notified by a lender, orders a home appraisal. Appraisal: 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…

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. Learn how to bleach your hardwood floors, including what type of bleach to use, to get the job done correctly. Types of wood bleach There are three types of bleach you can use on wood: chlorine bleach, “two-part”…

Beyond the variety of styles, colors, textures and shapes available, pavers – often called paving stones – have distinct advantages over other driveway surfaces. Why choose concrete pavers for your driveway? Among other benefits, a concrete paver driveway delivers the following. Strength, durability and longevity: 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…

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. The problem with uninsulated ducts 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).…

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. Warning: This article is not going to make you an expert. But…

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. 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’s probably because so many of them were built during the 1970s. T1-11 siding (plywood…

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?” 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…

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. Here’s the rundown of what’s new. ‘Seeing’ your home…

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. “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…

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