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hoeting, Author at Hoeting Realtors

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What You Should Really Know About Browsing for Homes Online

By: HouseLogic

Published: February 27, 2018

It’s fun! It’s exciting! It’s important to take everything with a grain of salt!

Oh, let’s just admit it, shall we? Browsing for homes online is a window shopper’s Shangri-La. The elegantly decorated rooms, the sculpted gardens, the colorful front doors that just pop with those “come hither” hues.

Browser beware, though: Those listings may be seductive, but they might not be giving you the complete picture.

That perfect split-level ranch? Might be too close to a loud, traffic-choked street. That handsome colonial with the light-filled photos? Might be hiding some super icky plumbing problems. That attractively priced condo? Miiiight not actually be for sale. Imagine your despair when, after driving across town to see your dream home, you realize it was sold.

So let’s practice some self-care, shall we, and set our expectations appropriately.

  • Step one, fill out our home buyer’s worksheet. The worksheet helps you understand what you’re looking for.
  • Step two, with that worksheet and knowledge in hand, start browsing for homes. As you do, keep in mind exactly what that tool can, and can’t, do. Here’s how.

You Keep Current. Your Property Site Should, Too

First things first: You wouldn’t read last month’s Vanity Fair for the latest cafe society gossip, right? So you shouldn’t browse property sites that show old listings.

Get the latest listings from realtor.com®, which pulls its information every 15 minutes from the {{ start_tip 71 }}Multiple Listing Service (MLS),{{ end_tip }} regional databases where real estate agents post listings for sale. That means that realtor.com®’s listings are more accurate than some others, like Zillow and Trulia, which may update less often. You wouldn’t want to get your heart a flutter for a house that’s already off the market.

BTW, there are other property listing sites as well, including Redfin, which is a brokerage and therefore also relies on relationships with brokers and MLSs for listings.

The Best Properties Aren’t Always the Best Looking

A picture, they say, is worth a thousand words. But what they don’t say is a picture can also hide a thousand cracked floorboards, busted boilers, and leaky pipes. So while it’s natural to focus on photos while browsing, make sure to also consider the property description and other key features.

Each realtor.com® listing, for example, has a “property details” section that may specify important information such as the year the home was built, price per square foot, and how many days the property has been on the market.

Ultimately though, ask your real estate agent to help you interpret what you find. The best agents have hyper-local knowledge of the market and may even know details and histories of some properties. If a listing seems too good to be true, your agent will likely know why.

Explore More Topics:

Find an Agent & View Homes

Buy a Home: Step-by-Step

Treat Your Agent Like Your Bestie

At the end of the day, property sites are like CliffsNotes for a neighborhood: They show you active listings, sold properties, home prices, and sales histories. All that data will give you a working knowledge, but it won’t be exhaustive.

To assess all of this information — and gather facts about any home you’re eyeing, like how far the local elementary school is from the house or where the closest Soul Cycle is — talk to your real estate agent. An agent who can paint a picture of the neighborhood is an asset.

An agent who can go beyond that and deliver the dish on specific properties is a true friend indeed, more likely to guide you away from homes with hidden problems, and more likely to save you the time of visiting a random listing (when you could otherwise be in the park playing with your canine bestie).

Want to go deeper? Consider these sites and sources:

  • School ratings: Data from GreatSchools.org and the National Center for Education Statistics, and the school district’s website
  • Crime rates and statistics: CrimeReports.com, NeighborhoodScout.com, SpotCrime.com, and the local police station
  • Walkability and public transportation: WalkScore.com and APTA.com
  • Hospital ratings: HealthInsight.org, LeapfrogGroup.org, and U.S. News and World Report rankings

Just remember: You’re probably not going to find that “perfect home” while browsing listings on your smartphone. Instead, consider the online shopping experience to be an amuse bouche to the home-buying entree — a good way for you to get a taste of the different types of homes that are available and a general idea of what else is out there.

Once you’ve spent that time online, you’ll be ready to share what you’ve learned with an agent.

How to Be A Savvy Open House Guest

How to Be a Savvy Open House Guest

By: HouseLogic

Getting smart — about what to do, ask, and avoid — can move you ahead of the crowd.

Ah, the open house — a chance to wander through other people’s homes and imagine yourself knocking out walls and gut rehabbing their kitchens. This is what dreams are made of (or at least episodes of HGTV).

In all seriousness, going to open houses (and scheduled private showings) is one of the most exciting parts of the home-buying experience. Beyond the voyeuristic thrill, visiting houses allows you to assess things that you just can’t see online.

Anyone who has taken a super-posed selfie knows that a picture doesn’t always tell the whole truth. Professional listing photos can make small rooms look spacious, make dim rooms bright, and mask other flaws of a home — but you don’t know any of that until you actually see the house yourself.

You can tour houses at any point, but it can be helpful to first discuss your needs and wants with your partner (if you have one), do some online research, and talk with your agent and your lender. That way, you — and your agent — can take a targeted approach, which saves you time and can give you an edge over your buying competition.

So, before you start viewing, follow these tips to get prepared.

Make It Your Job to Know Which Houses Are “Open”

There are four ways to know when a house is available for viewing:

  • Ask your agent. He or she will have details on specific properties and can keep you informed of open houses that fit your criteria.
  • Use listing websites. A number of property sites let you search active listings for upcoming open houses. On realtor.com®, for instance, when searching for properties, scroll over the “Buy” tab and click the “Open Houses” link to see upcoming ones in your area.
  • Scroll social media. On Instagram, for example, you can search the hashtag #openhouse, or similar tags for your city (#openhousedallas, for example), to discover open houses. Many real estate agents and brokerages also post open house announcements on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter; find ones from your area and start following.
  • Drive around. Cruise through the neighborhoods you’re interested in — it’s a good way to get a sense of the area amenities — and look for open house signs.

And while you’re searching, be sure to jot down the location, time, and date for any open house that strikes your fancy. It will make it that much easier to plan times and routes for hitting as many homes as possible.

Get There Early (and Say Hi to the Neighbors)

If you’re seriously interested in a home, show up to the open house early. That way you’ll beat the rush, and the agent showing the house (AKA the host) will have time to focus on you and your questions.

And don’t be shy! Many home buyers hop from one open house to the next without talking to the listing agent. But chatting up the host can help you learn information that you wouldn’t get by only {{ start_tip 79 }}touring the premises.{{ end_tip }}

If a house seems like a match, take a walk around the neighborhood. Strike up conversations with the neighbors to get an insider’s perspective on what life in that community is really like — families, singles, what the vibe on the block is like, and whether the homeowner’s or condo association (if there is one) is easy to work with.

Explore More Topics:

Find an Agent & View Homes

Buy a Home: Step-by-Step

Ask Lots of Questions, But Avoid TMI

To make the most of your open house visits, have a list of questions in mind for the host — and take notes while you’re there, so you can keep track of what you learned.

At the same time, remember this: Your interaction with the host could be the beginning of negotiations with them. If you end up making an offer, you’ll use the information you’ve gathered to inform your bid. (They’ll also remember that you were an engaged yet courteous person, which can’t hurt your cause.)

Equally important: Oversharing could hurt your negotiating power.

Be careful about what information you share with the agent hosting the event. This person works for the seller — not you. The host can and will use stats they’ve gleaned about you to counter, reject, or accept an offer.

Keeping that in mind, here are eight questions you can ask a host to help determine whether a house is a good fit for you:

    1. Have you received any offers? If there are already bids on the table, you’ll have to move quickly if you want to make an offer. Keep in mind: Listing agents can’t disclose the amount of any other offers, though — only whether they exist.
    2. When does the seller want to move? Find out the seller’s timeline. If the seller is in a hurry (say, for a new job), they may be willing to accept an offer that’s below list price.
    3. When is the seller looking to close? Price isn’t the only factor for many home sellers. One way to strengthen your offer is to propose a settlement date that’s ideal for them. For example, a 30- to 45-day closing is standard in many markets, but the seller may want more time if they haven’t purchased their next home yet.
    4. Is the seller flexible on price? Most listing agents won’t tip their hand when you ask this question, but there’s always a chance the agent says “yes.” And, in some instances, the seller has authorized their agent to tell interested buyers that the price is negotiable. In any case, you might as well ask. (It’s kind of like googling for a coupon code when you buy something online.)
    5. How many days has the home been on the market? You can find this information on the internet, but the seller’s agent can give you context, especially if the house has been sitting on the market for a while. Maybe the home was under contract but the buyer’s financing fell through, or the seller overshot the listing price and had to make a price reduction? Knowing the backstory can only help you.
    6. Has the price changed? You can see if there’s been a price reduction online, but talking to the listing agent is the only way to find out why the seller dropped the price.
    7. Are there any issues? Have there been any renovations or recent repairs made to the home? Some upgrades, like new kitchen appliances, are easy to spot, but some are harder to identify. Specifically ask about the roof, appliances, and HVAC system because they can be expensive to repair or replace. BTW, repairs like a leaky faucet, aren’t {{ start_tip 92 }} things that need to be disclosed.{{ end_tip }}
    8. What are the average utility costs? Many buyers don’t factor utility bills into their monthly housing expenses, and these costs can add up — particularly in drafty older homes. Ask the listing agent what a typical monthly utility bill is during the summer and during the winter, since heating and cooling costs can fluctuate seasonally. Be prepared for higher utility bills if you’re moving from an apartment to a single-family home.

Now that you’ve got your answers, there’s one last thing to do: Thank the host before you go. You never know — you could be seeing them again at the negotiating table soon.

Outdoor Kitchens Continue to Be Major Draw

August 21, 2019

The appeal of outdoor living continues to be important to homeowners, and the outdoor kitchen is at the center of that. The latest American Institute of Architects Home Design Trends Survey shows that outdoor kitchens are among the most wanted kitchen features in new architectural projects.

Nearly 50% of the architect respondents surveyed reported the popularity of outdoor kitchens is still growing. The popularity is seen in markets across the country, and not just in warmer climates like Florida, Texas, and California—outdoor kitchens are also taking hold in colder areas like the Northeast.

AIA outdoor living space survey. Visit source link at the end of this article for more information.

© American Institute of Architects

“Thanks to today’s design trends and technological advancements, the lines between indoor and outdoor kitchens are blurring—and in some cases disappearing completely,” Mitch Slater, founder and CEO of Danver Stainless Outdoor Kitchens and Brown Jordan Outdoor Kitchens, told BUILDER. “While it’s now possible to maintain the same aesthetic for indoor and outdoor kitchens, it’s crucial to choose durable, low-maintenance materials that will withstand exposure to rain, snow, and the elements.”

Slater says that powder-coated stainless steel cabinetry remains a popular choice for outfitting outdoor kitchens.

Also, it’s not just barbecues and grills that are highlighting outdoor kitchen spaces any longer. Specialty appliances are also appearing in more outdoor kitchens, such as pizza ovens; smokers; drawer-style, undercounter refrigerators; kegerators; and wine refrigerators.

22 Kitchen Trends That Will Be Huge in 2019

Open shelving is going to change your life—trust us.

kitchen trends 2019

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MAX KIM-BEE
Standout Sinks

You don’t have to go nuts to achieve an on-trend kitchen. While an apron-front sink in a farmhouse kitchen isn’t exactly unexpected, a farmhouse sink in soapstone with brass hardware is a showstopper—especially when it’s set against white walls, wood cabinets, and stainless steel countertops.

SHOP BRASS HARDWARE

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JIM WESTPHALEN
Tons of Texture

For those who fear color, focus on mixing up the finishes. Designer Cathy Chapman chose white beadboard on the ceiling and shiplap for the walls. She used unlacquered brass strap hinges and latches on the cabinets, black marble on the island countertop, and tons of warm woods on the floors, backsplash, and remaining countertops.

SHOP SHIPLAP

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MAX KIM-BEE
Swoon-Worthy Ceilings

When you want to maintain neutrality but still have some fun in the kitchen, shoot for the stars—or in this case, the ceiling. Here, the Madcap Cottage team chose to paint the ceiling a Southern porch-inspired blue (Blue Ground by Farrow & Ball) and added an elaborate antique lantern.

SHOP BLUE PAINT

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JOHN ELLIS
Hints of Color

You don’t have to scrap an all-white kitchen to stay on trend. Dip your toe in the color pool instead, whether you store colorful pottery in glass-front cabinets, bring in colorful furniture, or paint a large piece like this kitchen island in Tropical Moss by Dunn-Edwards Paints.

SHOP YELLOW PAINT

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DAVID TSAY
Open Kitchen and Living Areas

Maximize living space by making the family room and kitchen one large room. A mix of lighting helps differentiate the areas, while a uniform wall color keeps everything cohesive.

SHOP LIGHTING FIXTURES

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JOHN ELLIS
Pretty Pantries

Gone are the days of having a dark little pantry to house dry goods hidden away from prying eyes. Today’s kitchens boast roomy pantries with shelving aplenty for your cereals and collectibles. Proud of your organizational skills and want to show off? Finish the pantry space with a screened porch door painted in an eye-catching color, like this bright green hue.

SHOP GREEN PAINT

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JOHN ELLIS
Range of Colors

Appliance makers like Lacanche, Big Chill, and Smeg offer up a host of practical pieces in a number of colors and finishes, which will definitely liven up your range.

SHOP SMEG APPLIANCES

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kitchen trends rose gold

ANNIE SCHLECHTER
Copper Accents

If there’s one person who knows her way around a kitchen, it’s Martha Stewart. Her cooking area features copper pots and pans with an impressive collection of matching servingware.

SHOP COPPER COOKWARE

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kitchen trends reclaimed

RYANN FORD
Reclaimed Wood

To us, vintage will always be in. The owners of this Texas farmhouse show their love of repurposed pieces with matching reclaimed pine throughout the home.

SHOP RECLAIMED WOOD

10 OF 22
kitchen trends open

ALEC HEMER
Butcher Block Countertops

In this Massachusetts beach house, a savvy couple replaced linoleum with warm wood for a durable upgrade. Butcher block is virtually maintenance-free—it just needs an occasional coating of mineral oil—and the natural material is the perfect neutral to break up the sterility of an all-white palette.

SHOP MINERAL OIL

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kitchen trends two tone cabinets

LISA ROMEREIN/ RIZZOLI
Two-Tone Cabinets

Feel free to mix it up: Unified cabinetry is a thing of the past. Here, Diane Keaton features contrasting white and gray storage in her beautifully rustic kitchen.

SHOP CABINET PAINT

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kitchen trends colorful appliances

RIKKI SNYDER
Colorful Accents

With stainless steel on the way out, color is making a big comeback. Take a cue from this homeowner’s lively kitchen, which features a retro-inspired mint greenrefrigerator and dishwasher, plus a series of Smeg countertop appliances.

SHOP COLORFUL APPLIANCES

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kitchen trends concealed hood

BRIAN WOODCOCK
Concealed Range Hoods

If you feel inclined to give more attention to your appliances, backsplash, or accessories, then you’re going to be the first to embrace this new trend. Let your other kitchen elements steal the show with a sleek and minimalistic range hood like this onefashioned to blend in with the former chicken coop cabinets.

SHOP KITCHEN RUGS

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PHOTOGRAPHER: SIMON WATSON, DESIGNER: JEANETTE WHITSON
Darker Floors

If you choose a light paint for walls or cabinetry, select a dark floor stain to up the cozy factor of the room. Mix one-half Ebony and one-half Jacobean from Minwax.

Bonus idea: The addition of furniture-like “feet” gives cabinetry a softer, more custom feel.

SHOP WOOD STAIN

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PHOTOGRAPHER: NATHAN KIRMAN, DESIGNER: ANGIE HRANOWSKY
Think Beyond “Greige”

Gray undertones lend a timeless, totally livable vibe to most paint colors—not just beige—whether it’s a sophisticated blue-gray seen in this photo (Oyster Bay by Sherwin-Williams), a purple-gray (like Grayish by Sherwin-Williams), or green-gray (like Dry Sage by Benjamin Moore).

SHOP GRAY PAINTS

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PHOTOGRAPHER: JEAN ALLSOPP, DESIGNER: JOANNA GOODMAN FOR CHRISTOPHER ARCHITECTURE & INTERIORS
Heavy Up the Metal

The open shelving trend isn’t going anywhere, and in a kitchen void of upper cabinetry, the hood is inevitably the centerpiece. Dress it accordingly! Copper sheeting, with coordinating straps and rivets, adds age-old warmth.

SHOP COPPER HOODS

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PHOTOGRAPHER: THOMAS KUOH, DESIGNER: GRANT K. GIBSON
Design From the Ground Up

Rugs, however durable, aren’t practical for a heavy-use kitchen. Enter statement floor tile. It’s a more subtle way to add impact than, say, a bold eye-level backsplash.

Bonus idea: Tired of the same old subway tile? This on-trend square shape has a charming shingle-like effect.

SHOP PATTERNED TILE

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PHOTOGRAPHER: JEAN ALLSOPP, DESIGNER: DANIELLE YANCEY
Pecky Cypress Finishes

If you can’t get enough of the reclaimed-wood look, here are two words you’ll be hearing a lot: pecky cypress. Seen here on the hood and island, it’s a type of wood that has a grainy texture thanks to long, narrow burrows or cavities.

Bonus idea: From boxy appliances and islands to linear shelves, kitchens tend to have a lot of straight lines. Soften the room with orb lights.

SHOP ORB LIGHTS

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COURTESY OF DEVOL KITCHENS
Look Across the Pond

The (addictive!) Instagram feed of Britain’s deVOL kitchens offers an endless stream of age-old English inspiration, from decorative “spot cutouts” to painted wooden knobs. Take a cue from the kitchen experts and hide modern appliances such as microwaves in cabinetry that runs flush with the countertops.

SHOP WOOD KNOBS

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kitchen trends open shelving

ANNIE SCHLECHTER
Open Shelving

Open shelves allow you to showcase your beautiful kitchenwares among other heirlooms and antiques, as well as statement wallpaper like in this kitchen design. The ability to see through your storage also means everything is easy to find.

SHOP SHELVING

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PHOTOGRAPHER: EMILY GILBERT, DESIGNER: JENNY WOLF INTERIORS
Embrace Black Appliances

Plain old stainless steel has its merits, but in a small kitchen, a giant swath of silvery metal can quickly dominate the room. Appliance manufacturers such as GE, Samsung, and Whirlpool have wised up to this dilemma, introducing refrigerators, stoves, and microwaves in sophisticated shades of black and slate. We’re particularly fond of the new LG “Black Stainless Steel” series, a collaboration with designer Nate Berkus.

SHOP BLACK APPLIANCES

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PHOTOGRAPHER: ERICA GEORGE, DESIGNER: BARBARA WESTBROCK
Now, Get Decorating!

The kitchen is the most utilitarian room in the house, which is why you obsess over the appliances, the backsplash, the sink…But it’s also the heart of the home. Subtle touches such as slipcovers, decorative hardware, and prized collections serve up a little softness.

Bonus idea: Save the top shelf for precious collectibles, and leave the lower ones to everyday items.

SHOP SLIPCOVERS

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How Your Septic System Works

Septic systems are underground wastewater treatment structures, commonly used in rural areas without centralized sewer systems. They use a combination of nature and proven technology to treat wastewater from household plumbing produced by bathrooms, kitchen drains, and laundry.

A typical septic system consists of a septic tank and a drainfield, or soil absorption field.

The septic tank digests organic matter and separates floatable matter (e.g., oils and grease) and solids from the wastewater. Soil-based systems discharge the liquid (known as effluent) from the septic tank into a series of perforated pipes buried in a leach field, chambers, or other special units designed to slowly release the effluent into the soil.

Alternative systems use pumps or gravity to help septic tank effluent trickle through sand, organic matter (e.g., peat and sawdust), constructed wetlands, or other media to remove or neutralize pollutants like disease-causing pathogens, nitrogen, phosphorus, and other contaminants. Some alternative systems are designed to evaporate wastewater or disinfect it before it is discharged to the soil.

Specifically, this is how a typical conventional septic system works:

  1. All water runs out of your house from one main drainage pipe into a septic tank.
  2. The septic tank is a buried, water-tight container usually made of concrete, fiberglass, or polyethylene. Its job is to hold the wastewater long enough to allow solids to settle down to the bottom forming sludge, while the oil and grease floats to the top as scum.
    Compartments and a T-shaped outlet prevent the sludge and scum from leaving the tank and traveling into the drainfield area.
  3. The liquid wastewater (effluent) then exits the tank into the drainfield.
  4. The drainfield is a shallow, covered, excavation made in unsaturated soil. Pretreated wastewater is discharged through piping onto porous surfaces that allow wastewater to filter though the soil. The soil accepts, treats, and disperses wastewater as it percolates through the soil, ultimately discharging to groundwater.
    If the drainfield is overloaded with too much liquid, it can flood, causing sewage to flow to the ground surface or create backups in toilets and sinks.
  5. Finally, the wastewater percolates into the soil, naturally removing harmful coliform bacteria, viruses and nutrients. Coliform bacteria is a group of bacteria predominantly inhabiting the intestines of humans or other warm-blooded animals. It is an indicator of human fecal contamination.

View an animated, interactive model of how a household septic system works Exit created by the Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority.

Do you have a septic system?

You may already know you have a septic system. If you do not know, here are tell-tale signs that you probably do:

  • You use well water.
  • The waterline coming into your home does not have a meter.
  • You show a “$0.00 Sewer Amount Charged” on your water bill or property tax bill.
  • Your neighbors have a septic system.

How to find your septic system

Once you have determined that you have a septic system, you can find it by:

  • Looking on your home’s “as built” drawing.
  • Checking your yard for lids and manhole covers.
  • Contacting a septic system service provider to help you locate it.

Failure symptoms: Mind the signs!

A foul odor is not always the first sign of a malfunctioning septic system. Call a septic professional if you notice any of the following:

  • Wastewater backing up into household drains.
  • Bright green, spongy grass on the drainfield, especially during dry weather.
  • Pooling water or muddy soil around your septic system or in your basement.
  • A strong odor around the septic tank and drainfield.

What Does the Color of Your Front Door Say About You?

What Does the Color of Your Front Door Say About You?

Let your personality shine through with the help of these colorful coats of paint.

Your front door is a place to greet visitors, welcome friends and invite outsiders in. A cheerful color can illuminate your front porch and turn a drab setting into a charming spot. Choosing the right color for your front door can be tough, as there are more than plenty of hues and tones to pick from. Different colors represent different meanings, so while some of you may go for bright and bold, others may prefer warm and soft. What do you want your front door to say about you?

Check out these 12 colorful front doors for inspiration!

1. Modern Red

Red doors have been symbolic throughout history to mean “welcome”. This modern home takes a spin on the classic hospitality approach by painting the door a bold red.

2. Elegant Eggplant

Purple palettes are full of grace as this colored door represents privilege, royalty, and wealth.

3. Sunny Yellow

For those of you who don’t mind standing out, a bright yellow door will bring energy, positivity, and joy to your front steps!

BHG

BHG

4. Deep Blue

This dark blue door color has a calming effect associated with stability and trust.

5. Rustic Orange

This pumpkin orange door is charming in color as it radiates warmth and wisdom.

6. Seasonal Green

An inspiring color like green is a popular choice for front doors. Green can be associated with money, ambition, and growth.

7. Bright Aqua

Such a fun color like this Simply Aqua Valspar Paint at Lowe’s can bring an uplifting sense of friendliness to your front steps.

Coastal Living

David Hillegas via Coastal Living

8. Vibrant Lime

A color so “out there” like lime green may seem far too lively for your front door, but this outgoing color is sure to attract visitors and step up your curb appeal.

9. Soft Teal

A sweet serene color such as teal promotes emotional healing and creativity.

10. Cool Gray

A sophisticated color like grey is both neutral and dignified. Grey is typically a background color, letting your front porch decorations stand out.

11. Sassy Green

Let your personality show through your front door by choosing a color like Sassy Green Valspar Paint that’s lively and refreshing.

This Old House

Deborah Whitlaw Llewellyn via This Old House

12. Apple Red

This timeless front door makes a statement with a classic crisp red color.

BHG Red Door

Why You Should Sell Your Home in 2019

Housing markets may not be as hot as previous years, but selling now could be your best bet.

By Devon Thorsby, Editor, Real Estate |March 7, 2019, at 9:42 a.m.

Why You Should Sell Your Home in 20
Aerial view of a dense residential district

Homeowners looking to sell should consider 2019 a prime opportunity to cash in. (Getty Images)

Few people are predicting that 2019 will be a record-breaking year for home prices.

But relatively speaking, 2019 might be the best time for you to put your house on the market. Especially if you’re on the fence about selling this year or next, Nick Ron, CEO of House Buyers of America, recommends going with the devil you know rather than the devil you don’t.

“I think it’ll be better than 2020 and 2021 – who knows what’s going to happen in those years,” Ron says.

Home price growth slowed in the second half of 2018, with fewer buyers entering the market, at least partially due to rising interest rates issued by the Federal Reserve. In 2019, consumers shouldn’t expect homebuyers to flood the market again and drive prices through the roof, but it’s also unlikely to be a crisis for home sellers.

If you bought your house in the last year or two, still love it and don’t want to part with it, go ahead and wait another five years before revisiting the thought of selling. But if you’re weighing your options to sell, considering selling this year or maybe the year after, don’t play the waiting game.

Here are four reasons to sell your house in 2019:

  • New buyers are still entering the market.
  • Interest rates are still on the lower end.
  • You have high equity.
  • Selling now will be better than waiting till 2020.

[Read: 7 Online Tools to Help You Estimate Your Home’s Value.]

New Buyers Are Still Entering the Market

As interest rates rise, some buyers will hesitate to make an offer on a home or apply for a mortgage, so be ready to see occasional drops in buyer activity. And if your house is at the higher end of the price range in your market, you should expect less buyer interest than before. Ron notes the combination of rising mortgage rates and home prices exceeding buyers’ budgets are what has caused the slowing of homebuyer activity in recent months.

But with available housing inventory remaining low, even with rising interest rates, buyers who are ready to make a purchase will still shop for homes. The biggest wave of new homebuyers will be among millennials, who are mostly first-time buyers. In a Harris Poll survey of 2,000 U.S. adults commissioned by real estate information company Trulia, more than one-fifth of Americans between ages 18 and 34 said they plan to buy a home within the next 12 months. Already, millennials make up the largest share of homebuyers at 36 percent, according to the National Association of Realtors, which released the number in March 2018.

The bottom line: While houses may sit on the market for a few more days on average compared with 2017 when the market was white-hot, buyers remain active and it’s still possible to profit from your home sale.

[See: Best Home Security Systems of 2019.]

Interest Rates Are Still Low-ish

Mortgage interest rates have been on a bit of a bumpy road over the last few months. Interest rates for a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage reached their highest level in over seven years in November 2018, when they hit 4.94 percent, according to Freddie Mac. As of the end of February 2019, however, interest rates are down slightly to 4.35 percent, according to the mortgage loan company. While it’s reasonable to expect mortgage rates to continue to climb gradually throughout the next year, they’ll remain much lower than the historic high of more than 18 percent in 1981.

It’s important to keep in mind that while mortgage rates tend to mirror the Fed’s interest rate activity, mortgage rates are based on the market in that moment, your financial status and the property you’re looking to purchase.

[Read: How Moving to a New Home Affects Your Taxes.]

Just because the Fed raises rates at one meeting doesn’t mean mortgage rates will follow that exact pattern. “Not every Fed increase is passing on (to) a mortgage rate,” says John Pataky, executive vice president and chief consumer and commercial banking executive at TIAA Bank.

A sudden leap in mortgage interest rates is unlikely in 2019, though Pataky notes that you should be ready to see rates continue to climb. “We do expect over the next 12 months that mortgage rates will continue to drift higher,” he says.

If you’re looking to get the lowest interest rate possible on your next house, try to make a deal sooner rather than later.


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You Have High Equity

Homeowners who bought during the recession or shortly after benefitted from historically low interest rates and, up until around 2015, lower home prices that were still in recovery mode. If you fall into that category, your home equity has risen with nearly every mortgage payment, each renovation you made to the house and all the other houses on the block that sold for a higher price.

The higher your equity in your home, the more you net from the sale, which can easily go toward the down payment on your next house. The larger your down payment, the better you look to lenders and the lower your interest rate will be, and the less likely you’ll need to increase monthly payments with private mortgage insurance.

[Read: Is Your House Too Big for You?]

Selling in 2019 vs. 2020

If not selling your home in 2019 means putting your house on the market in 2020, the sooner option is the best one. In a survey of 100 U.S. real estate experts and economists by real estate information company Zillow, released in May, almost half expect the next recession to occur in 2020. Another 14 percent believe the recession will hold out until 2021, while 24 percent of panelists expect the recession earlier – sometime in 2019.

Whether you believe the recession is imminent or a long way off, current real estate patterns indicate a sudden upswing in activity or prices is unlikely in the near future. Real estate markets tend to operate on a cycle of their own, the length of which varies by market but can be between 10 and 16 years total and flow from a seller’s market to a buyer’s market with a period of balance in between.

“It doesn’t look like there’s anything on the horizon that’s going to cause a big spike in home prices or increase demand dramatically,”