My specialties include general lifestyle, arts and culture, profiles, beauty, shelter/design, business and wellness. Note that some articles were written under my pseudonym, Pauline Estrem.
But something did happen during the process that I was completely unprepared for: sexism from male professionals who helped us along the way. It left me surprised and dismayed.
You might not think of real estate agents as experts in interior design. But—given the sheer volume of homes they see—they certainly have some valuable insight to offer. They see firsthand how design can be a detriment when selling a home.
Between saving, searching, and signing on the dotted line, buying your first home can be an overwhelming process. Making the whole experience even more daunting is the real estate jargon, which can sound like Greek to a real estate newbie.
Not sure where to start? Don't stress. We spoke to two real estate professionals to find out the 10 terms millennials should know before they even think about buying their first home.
Love or hate them, Chip and Joanna Gaines have made a lasting impact on the real estate scene. Fixer Upper has convinced many people that those opposite-of-turnkey homes are not money pits, but opportunities in disguise. Not only can they save you a lot of cash—even with renovation costs added on top of the purchase price—but they can also allow you to truly personalize your home to your heart's content.
Property Shark recently released its findings for the most expensive zip code in the United States–and the answer might surprise you. It's not Beverly Hills, Palm Beach, or someplace in the Hamptons.
It's Atherton, California, an affluent Silicon Valley town just a short drive from the likes of Facebook and Google. In the zip code 94027, the median sale price is $6.7 million, which spiked about 35 percent since 2017. (Rankings are based on closed home sales.)
Some people were born to fit in. Others were born to stand out. The same goes for homes. For every 100 cookie-cutter McMansions, you might find one home that breaks the mold–which makes such architecturally significant homes priceless in our book.
If you've ever left a door open, you've probably been asked if you were raised in a barn (the antiquated phrase refers to farmers' tendency to leave the door open during the day to facilitate easy coming and going.) But what in the past was a clever dig is now a compliment. With all the attractive homes converted from barns on the market right now, who wouldn't want to grow up in one?
These days, actually using the phone to call people has pretty much fallen by the wayside. But here's ample reason to pick up the phone: By making a few simple calls—and asking the right questions—you could save hundreds on your household bills.
They say good things come in small packages—and fans of the tiny house movement seem to agree. More and more people are giving up typical homes (and typical mortgages) and choosing the pared-down experience of living in small prefab homes—but that doesn't mean sacrificing luxury or comfort. Here are five examples of prefab homes that pack a ton of upscale amenities into tiny spaces.
They say you never get a second chance to make a first impression, and the saying holds true for homes. When your house is on the market, you want potential buyers to fall in love at first sight—and that means having major curb appeal. While the house itself is the focus of curb appeal, keep in mind that landscaping is an important factor to consider as well. Thoughtful use of plants can create visual interest and enhance the overall look of your property.
When buying a house these days, homeowners insurance is typically mandatory–even if you don't think you'll ever need it. However, the hefty monthly sum you pay for coverage may be more useful than you realize.
They say that your home is your biggest investment–meaning you're going to sink a good chunk of change into your new abode, both at the outset and over the years. With that kind of money on the table, it's crucial to save some dollars wherever you can.:
Buying a home—especially for the first time—can be an overwhelming and confusing ordeal, and your real estate agent is your guide through that complicated process. So it's only natural that you look to them for guidance and trust their advice and expertise on matters big and small.
But keep in mind that agents are looking to make a sale, so there can be times when some may resort to omitting a bit of info here or sugarcoating something there just to help everything go more smoothly.
To say I was a bit stressed out while hunting for and purchasing my first home would be a gross understatement. You see, I'm a planner. I like to know what to expect in any given situation, and having to trust our real estate agent to guide us through the whole process—without having a road map detailing each step of that process—made me a nervous wreck. There seemed to be so many moving parts that it made my head spin.
But one smart purchase helped me maintain my sanity.