Decked out from coast to coast: Top outdoor living trends for 2014
From genteel porches in the East to sleek, seaside balconies in the West, the popularity of outdoor living spaces is poised for significant growth from coast to coast with industry analysts predicting it will be a $5.7 billion market by 2016. Here is a glimpse into the national trends that will be emerging outside homes across America in 2014.
Once at rock bottom, interest rates have ticked up slightly in recent months. Still, the prospect of refinancing a mortgage remains attractive. Interest rates are projected to rise to 5 percent or above by August 2014, according to an August 2013, Freddie Mac study.
When spring finally arrives, windows and skylights across the country will open, as happy homeowners revel in all that sunshine and warm, fresh air. But before you can savor spring, you still have weeks of winter to get through. You can use that time wisely to ensure all your home's windows, skylights and doors are in good working order - and ready for action when spring arrives.
Meeting buyer demands in a seller's market: Top trends for 2014
With many real estate industry watchers predicting 2014 will be a seller's market, you may think you won't need to do much to sell your home this spring. Not so fast - while more buyers are likely to be competing for homes, that doesn't mean they're willing to settle for less than perfect. In fact, coming out of the real estate crash of a few years ago, buyers have learned the importance of getting the maximum value for their home investment.
Got an 'impossible' space? The no-fail way to turn it into a bathroom
Nearly everyone has a home improvement "impossible dream" - an inground pool in a postage-stamp-sized backyard or a professional-grade kitchen on a $5,000 budget. Some homeowners might say their can't-do renovation is adding a bathroom in an impossible space. But enterprising homeowners and contractors are using a long-proven technology to creatively add bathrooms in a variety of locations once considered "impossible" for plumbing.
Winter renovations to boost home energy efficiency, add value
It's that time of year again, when the cold wind blows outdoors and your home works as hard as it can to keep you warm and comfortable indoors. Yet your home may be working harder than necessary, while inflating your energy bills in the process. By making a few home renovations this winter, you can boost energy efficiency, save money and add value to your home in the long run.
Learn more about the nation's most popular siding material
While vinyl siding has historically been the most-used siding material in the U.S., its continuing advancements are allowing even more choice when it comes to two critical qualities desired by homeowners: outstanding curb appeal and low maintenance.
How to maintain your deck for outdoor entertaining year-round
Expanding livable space using decks and patios is a top home improvement trend, but today's homeowners aren't satisfied with limiting entertaining outdoors to the warmer months. With a few smart updates, they're creating spaces that make outdoor entertaining possible all year long. Breathe new life into your existing deck and create a space that can be used for entertaining year-round with a few expert tips.
Nix the neutrals: Undoing open house decor to make a new home your own
When selling a house, the mantra for most is neutral, neutral, neutral. To help potential new owners envision themselves moving in, real estate experts remind sellers to de-personalize their homes. That means removing family photos and mementos and replacing favorite color schemes with more vanilla shades and hues. So as a new homeowner, how do you begin to de-neutralize your new house to make it your new home?