If you're having trouble paying your mortgage, remember there are options before you concede your home.
It was not so long ago that the term “short sale” was about as familiar to the average American as a novel written in hieroglyphics, while “foreclosure” was a thing that happened infrequently and only to other, irresponsible people. Today, these terms are sadly mainstream.
Whether due to an adjustable-rate mortgage which has reset, resulting in higher loan payments, or because of job losses or pay cuts making once affordable payments now unaffordable, too many homeowners are finding themselves facing difficult decisions. If you find yourself in one of these situations, it is important to know that you do have options.
A short sale is a sale of your home in which the proceeds will be insufficient to cover your obligations including costs of sale, any unpaid taxes or other liens, and (most importantly) your outstanding mortgage balance. Short sales require lender approval, since the...
Finding a place to live that is accessible and comfortable is more challenging for disabled apartment hunters. But with an awareness of rights and a clear idea of what is needed in an apartment community, the task can be made easier.
If you or a loved one are disabled, you should know that there are a number of laws in place that help ensure that you or they are not denied an apartment or access to one on the basis of a disability. You’ll also want to keep in mind all the details of what accessible means to you, and be prepared with the right questions for your apartment search.
Know the law
The Americans with Disabilities Act and Fair Housing Act both provide protection when it comes to access of housing for those with disabilities. The ADA is more general in its guidelines for leased property than for public property, but still requires that landlords allow access, passively or actively. The financial burden of such modifications, however, is open to negotiation.
According to the ADA Web site, “The ADA places the legal obligation to remove barriers or provide auxiliary aids and services on both the landlord and the tenant. The landlord and the tenant may decide by lease who will actually make the changes and provide the aids and services, but both remain legally responsible.”
The Fair Housing Act is more specific in regard to apartments for disabled persons. The details of this law are managed by the Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity in the Department...
A used tool isn't a bargain if it ends up costing you more money to replace down the road. Here are some tips on buying used tools that are worth the dough.
Buying used tools can be a great way to get your workshop setup. You can save hundreds of dollars on tools that have years of life left in them. On the other hand, you can unknowingly buy someone else's problem and regret your decision as soon as you use it.
Before buying any used tools you must evaluate your needs, set a budget, know the market, and test the tools. If you follow these steps you'll mitigate the risk of buying junk.
WHAT'S YOUR PLAN?
Do you plan on woodworking, welding, 3D printing or something else? Only buy what you need at the time. It's tempting to peruse the classifieds and come across great deals for tools you don't really need. Focus on what you are planning on building and the best tools to do the job.
Designed in 2014 by DP+HS Architects, this three-storey residence is located in an opulent residential area in North Jakarta, Indonesia.
Home sellers spend a lot of time preparing their homes for sale. However, once the For Sale sign goes up on your property, it can be easy to forget that you may need to take additional security precautions to keep your home and belongings safe during the process. Mary Wassef, a Realtor® with Circa Real Estate in Houston, Texas offers five important tips to keep in mind.
After listing and selling homes for the past 10 years I’ve realized times they are a changing. I think it’s important for sellers to remember these key tips when getting ready to put your house on the market:
1. Strangers will be walking through your home during showings and/or open houses. Hide your valuables in a safe place. For security’s sake, remember to remove keys, credit cards, jewelry, and any other valuables from the home during the listing period or at least during showings. Also consider removing or hiding prescription drugs. Some seemingly honest people wouldn’t think twice about getting their hands on any of these items.
2. Don’t leave personal information like mail or bills out in the open where anyone can see it. Be sure to lockdown your computer, laptop, IPAD and/or any other expensive electronic devices, prior to your showings.
3. Do not show your home by yourself. If someone comes to your door claiming to be an agent and you have no scheduled appointment, ask them to call your agent to confirm an appointment. Predators come in all shapes and sizes. They can refer all inquiries to your agent.
4. You are responsible for your pets. If possible, your animals should be removed during...
For Guillaume Amat's “Open Fields” project he placed a mirrored stand in various landscapes, reflecting the opposing environment back within the image to create a double interpretation of the surrounding scene. These reflections contain dark figures against bright fields, homes in barren landscapes, bits of foliage contained within stretches of industry, and even a horse that pops into the frame.
Each image is taken with a 4×5 inch camera, the included mirror measuring 31.5 x 47.2 inches. Amat wanted to concentrate on the double interpretation of the landscape seen outside and within the mirror, working on the concept of territory as space.
Independent curator and writer Paul Wombell compared this series to the Greek myth of Orpheus and Eurydice saying, “With the use of the camera and a mirror Guillaume Amat has made photographic images that simultaneously look forward and backwards. They create a strange dreamlike landscape where buildings and figures float in the center of the picture and suggest that he has two sets of eyes, both at the front and back of his head. Orpheus would have been impressed.”
Amat lives and works in Paris where he mostly focuses on long-term projects to produce cohesive photographic narratives existing somewhere between documentary and poetry. (via vjeranski)
My husband and I recently bought our second home. Surprisingly, the process was far more involved than it was the first time around, just six short years ago. Not only did we have to sell the house we were living in, but the application for our new home loan also seemed much more complex and involved.
If I could go back in time, I'd be sure to keep the following points in mind before applying for our home loan. In the end, it all worked out for our family. We were approved, we found an awesome place, we moved, and we're now happily settling in. However, the more prepared you are from the start, the easier the whole thing will be — trust me!
1. Crunch the Numbers
Before you start searching for houses and applying for home loans, you need to get a solid understanding of your budget.
- How much money are you planning to put down?
- How much might houses need in repairs and maintenance?
- What are any associated fees and yearly property taxes?
- How much are monthly utilities?
- What percentage of your monthly income will a certain loan take from your monthly paycheck?
- What will moving and closing costs add to the equation?
Write it all down or type it out in an Excel spreadsheet. The answers to these questions will dictate the type of loan you seek (FHA, conventional, etc.) and help guide your search. And it's wise to speak with a financial advisor if you're unsure. Be truthful and don't overextend yourself — many loans are 30 years, and that's a long time to regret a decision.
2. Check Your Score
Here at Wise Bread, we like to talk about building wealth over the long term. But what if you want to be worth more tomorrow than you are today?
There are plenty of ways to make a quick buck, but more importantly there are easy ways to build your overall net worth in a single day.
Here are a dozen ways that you can bolster your financial situation in quick order.
1. Buy a Stock
This is not a guarantee. But on any given day, the stock market is more likely to go up than down. In the last decade, there have been about 2,500 trading days. Of those, the S&P 500 — the index that tracks the performance of the biggest companies — has finished up more than 1,300 times. So about 55% of the time, if you invest in a fund that mirrors the S&P 500, you'll make money in a single day.
2. Spend No Money
One of the nice things about having some money in the bank is that you can make money by simply doing nothing. If you manage to get through a day without spending a dime — no runs to Starbucks, no impulse buys on Amazon — you'll have increased your net worth simply because your cash is earning interest.
3. Sell Stuff
These days, it's relatively easy to find buyers for things you don't need. Consider using Craigslist or eBay to sell your unwanted items. You'd be surprised how many people have made decent side incomes just by selling things online. If you don't want to go the Internet route, you may be able to get cash for your items at consignment shops or used book stores.
4. Earn Cash for Doing Quick Tasks
There are a number of websites that will pay you money to do things...
Location: L'eixample — Valencia, Spain.
Size: 3530 square feet
Years lived in: Owned 5 years
Sandra's home is full of flowers. Incredible light and high ceilings frame floral patterns, shades of blue and elaborate tiles, which in turn add modernity to a space with stunning, classic architectural details. Sandra is a fashion designer and has her own brand, Kaif. She also has a beautiful store in Valencia where she sells all the pieces she creates.
Sandra's best advice: don't be afraid of taking risks and always give lots of personality.
Her modern style defines the way she created this home; she found furnishings for this home from a variety of stories, always on the hunt for original design and modern lines. Color is also really important for her, so all the rooms of the home have a harmonious combination of hues.
Kurt Budliger gives us practical tips for creating dynamic coastal seascapes
Sunrise light along the rocky coast of Acadia National Park, Maine, photographed with a 3-stop grad ND filter.
Our affinity for and connection to the sea has been deeply rooted in our art and culture for hundreds, if not thousands, of years. In the United States alone, there are more than 95,000 miles of coastline, with approximately 39% of the U.S. population living in a coastal county. And, of course, many millions more flock to the shore to recreate and vacation every year. It's no wonder coastal landscapes are some of the most published images in print media and extremely popular in contests and online photo-sharing sites. However, photographing in this dynamic and ever-changing environment can be tricky business. Fortunately, there are several tips and strategies that can get you well on your way to creating the stunning coastal landscapes you've always dreamed of.
This sunset image is a combination of several exposures...