Realtor

For Many, Buying May Be More Affordable Than Renting in Charlotte

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for-sale (Photo by Courtney St. Onge)
A recent survey shows buying a home may be more affordable than renting for many people in Charlotte. (Photo by Courtney St. Onge)

Real estate database company Zillow reports that in the most recent quarter of 2014, buying a home in Charlotte was about twice as affordable as renting.

Which Illinois Towns are Best for Families? Top 10 Are Chicago Suburbs

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Oak Park is the best town for families in all of Illinois, according to one recent study. (Photo courtesy of the village of Oak Park)
Oak Park is the best town for families in all of Illinois, according to one recent study. (Photo courtesy of the village of Oak Park)

According to one recent study, Oak Park is Illinois' top town for families based on statistics like crime, education, unemployment, child care and parks.

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Title Company

A Cloud on Your Title Can Rain on Your Closing

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You are responsible for the cost of clearing any clouds on your title unless it is covered by your owner’s title insurance policy. (Photo by Ray Alderete)
You are responsible for the cost of clearing any clouds on your title unless it is covered by your owner’s title insurance policy. (Photo by Ray Alderete)

An issue with your title can delay closing on your new home. Do research, work with your title agent and communicate often to clear any clouds on your title.

Is That Letter About Your Property Deed Legit? N.C. AG Says Beware Scam

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home (Photo by Courtney St. Onge)
Homeowners should ignore mail notices seeking a payment for title information. (Photo by Courtney St. Onge)

The mail arrives in an official looking envelope and says you need to pay for a copy of your property deed. They know details of your home and are banking on what you don't know.

Buyer beware: How to avoid a home closing nightmare

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Member Brenda Payne says contractors have done tens of thousands of dollars of repair work for problems that surfaced after she closed on her home. (Photo by Michael Smith)
Member Brenda Payne says contractors have done tens of thousands of dollars of repair work for problems that surfaced after she closed on her home. (Photo by Michael Smith)

Finding lenders, real estate agents, home inspectors and other professionals you can trust is an important first step in buying a house. Here's how to do it.

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Home Stager

No More Wallpaper Hang Ups as D.C. Embraces New Trends

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Going bold is no problem when shopping for wallpaper. It's all about making a statement. (Photo by Jason Hargraves)
Going bold is no problem when shopping for wallpaper. It's all about making a statement. (Photo by Jason Hargraves)

Bold patterns and textures give new life to the once-shunned choice of wallpaper for your home. Learn what's new and what's changed with this trendy option.

Want to Sell Your House? 3 Things Not to Do

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A home that’s for sale needs to have a broad appeal and be similar to others in the area, says Player. (Photo by Eldon Lindsay)
A home that’s for sale needs to have a broad appeal and be similar to others in the area, says Player. (Photo by Eldon Lindsay)

Customizing can make your home difficult to sell. For wide buyer appeal, let consumer demand guide you. Don't eliminate a room or change the function of a space.

Got Equity? D.C. Homeowners Do, Report Points to Equity Rich Region

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D.C. brownstone (Photo by Jason Hargraves)
Homes in Washington, D.C., rank among the top in the nation as being "equity rich." (Photo by Jason Hargraves)

Washington homeowners have a good chance of being "equity rich" in today's real estate market. Find out how that puts more money in your pocket when selling.

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Home Inspector

3 Reasons to Be at Your Home Inspection

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Being at the home inspection allows you to see your "dream home" from the inspector's unbiased viewpoint, says Sherwood. (Photo courtesy of Angie's List member Diwata F. of Buffalo, New York)
Being at the home inspection allows you to see your "dream home" from the inspector's unbiased viewpoint, says Sherwood. (Photo courtesy of Angie's List member Diwata F. of Buffalo, New York)

You may never believe the things a home inspector will discover unless you're there, too. Being at your home inspection lets you see any problems firsthand.

Crippling Home Defects That Often Go Unnoticed

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When condensation starts forming in the insulation, it gets saturated, heavy and starts falling apart, says Jimenez. (Photo courtesy of A House on a Rock Home Inspections)
When condensation starts forming in the insulation, it gets saturated, heavy and starts falling apart, says Jimenez. (Photo courtesy of A House on a Rock Home Inspections)

There are places in your home that are easy to forget, but these oft-neglected areas of the house are where defects lurk, waiting to become major problems.

Charlotte Realtor Helps Gay and Lesbian Couples Navigate Home Buying Challenges

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lodestone-for-sale (Photo by Courtney St. Onge)
Lodeestone Real Estate offers workshops aimed at helping gay and lesbian home buyers. (Photo by Courtney St. Onge)

Real estate agent offers advice to LGBT buyers facing complex legal issues because of state and federal marriage laws

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Property Management Company

Property management woes plague Indianapolis homeowners

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Experts recommend having a real estate lawyer review the contract before signing with a property management company. (Photo by Eldon Lindsay)
Experts recommend having a real estate lawyer review the contract before signing with a property management company. (Photo by Eldon Lindsay)

When it comes to property management, hiring the wrong company can cost you. Find out what to look for in a property manager and how to properly vet them.

Can the neighbor's cats ruin your property value?

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Lawsuit says 20 cats in Chicago condo make property impossible to sell (Photo by Steven Jack)
One Chicago couple is suing a neighbor for $100,000 after they say an estimated 20 cats in the home have ruined their property values. (Photo by Steven Jack)

One Chicago couple is suing their condo neighbor over excessive cat-pee odors and allergies caused by an estimated 20 cats living below their Lakeview condo. They say they can't sell the home because of the smells.

Heading for home: The Stadium Lofts change up Indy apartment living

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Bush Stadium Lofts (Photo by Brandon Smith)
The area that was once the playing surface serves as recreational space for those who live in the apartments. (Photo by Brandon Smith)

Want to live somewhere with history? The Bush Stadium Lofts in Indianapolis may be the place for you! From baseball to Hollywood, check out these apartments.

6 questions to ask before signing a lease

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Make sure to get everything in writing before you sign a lease. (Photo courtesy of Angie's List member Dalton J. of Yonkers, N.Y.)

Are you planning to rent a home or apartment? Hold up. Before signing a lease, make sure you're getting everything you need. Ask these questions before you sign.

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Mover

Which Illinois Towns are Best for Families? Top 10 Are Chicago Suburbs

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Oak Park is the best town for families in all of Illinois, according to one recent study. (Photo courtesy of the village of Oak Park)
Oak Park is the best town for families in all of Illinois, according to one recent study. (Photo courtesy of the village of Oak Park)

According to one recent study, Oak Park is Illinois' top town for families based on statistics like crime, education, unemployment, child care and parks.

Moving Old Houses Preserves Indiana History

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The Cotton-Ropkey House in Indianapolis predates the Civil War. It's for sale for $1, but must be moved off the property. (Photo courtesy of Indiana Landmarks)
The Cotton-Ropkey House in Indianapolis predates the Civil War. It's for sale for $1, but must be moved off the property. (Photo courtesy of Indiana Landmarks)

Relocating a home? You'll need more than just a structure relocation company. Many moves involve architects and engineers. Get all the details here.

5 Tips to Pack Away Holiday Dishes like a Pro

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Packing dishes can be the trickiest part of storing holiday decor, says McHolm. (Photo by NorthStar Moving )
Packing dishes can be the trickiest part of storing holiday decor, says McHolm. (Photo by NorthStar Moving )

No more chipped Christmas plates: Keep your holiday dishes looking merry and bright each year with these five professional tips for packing fragile tableware.

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Mortgage Broker

Selling Your D.C. House? Don't Expect Cash Offer

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D.C. has few all-cash buyers in the real estate market compared to other cities. (Photo by Jason Hargraves)
D.C. has few all-cash buyers in the real estate market compared to other cities. (Photo by Jason Hargraves)

Washington and D.C. suburbs rank the lowest in the nation among major cities where home sellers can expect all-cash offers. Find out what makes the area unique.

Should I Be Preapproved Before Home Shopping?

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Aside from knowing the maximum purchase price you qualify for, there also are several other benefits to preapproval, says Goldhirsh. (Photo courtesy of Angie's List member Paul N. of Houston)
Aside from knowing the maximum purchase price you qualify for, there also are several other benefits to preapproval, says Goldhirsh. (Photo courtesy of Angie's List member Paul N. of Houston)

Getting preapproved for a loan before you go house hunting can make the process much easier, and prevent any last-minute mortgage surprises before you buy.

Illinois Housing Market Gets Boost From State Unemployment Figures

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The Chicago housing market is showing signs of improvement thanks to a brighter employment outlook.  (Photo by Steven Jack)
The Chicago housing market is showing signs of improvement thanks to a brighter employment outlook. (Photo by Steven Jack)

Chicago and the rest of the state still lag behind national averages in several key housing statistics, but more people working leads to an improved outlook.

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Structural Engineer

6 tips to prevent earthquake damage

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An earthquake retrofit in progress. Contractors can make a home more earthquake resistant through various remodeling projects. (Photo courtesy of Angie's List member Kevin H. of San Francisco)

Earthquakes can strike out of nowhere and cause major damage to your home. Consider these tips to protect your home from earthquake damage.

What causes horizontal cracks in concrete block foundations?

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Horizontal cracks caused by lateral soil pressure may eventually result in a bowed foundation wall, as seen in this before photo. (Photo courtesy of Angie's List member Lillian K. of Brevard, N.C.)

Does your home have horizontal cracks in its concrete block foundation? Check out these common causes and repairs for horizontal foundation cracks from a highly rated structural engineer.

Have a foundation crack? Consult a structural engineer

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Where home inspectors review an entire structure from top to bottom, structural engineers specialize in focusing on assessing the integrity of the structure itself, potential problems and solutions. (Photo courtesy of Angie's List member Sandra S. of Converse, Texas)

Are you worried about a crack in your home's foundation. A structural engineer can examine the crack and determine if your house is safe or hazardous to live in.

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Home Warranty

Cost versus benefit: what a home warranty really offers

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A home warranty came in handy for this member when a water line burst. (Photo courtesy of Angie’s List member John D. of West Vancouver, British Columbia)
A home warranty came in handy for this member when a water line burst. (Photo courtesy of Angie’s List member John D. of West Vancouver, British Columbia)

Home warranties don't always come with the kind of robust protection and security homeowners expect. Here's a quick breakdown on the real costs, and real benefits, of purchasing a warranty for your home.

Worst Las Vegas Contractors of 2012

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Las Vegas resident Ryan Law says he received $4,422 from the NSCB’s residential recovery fund for his incomplete pool. (Photo courtesy of Ryan Law)
Las Vegas resident Ryan Law says he received $4,422 from the NSCB’s residential recovery fund for his incomplete pool. (Photo courtesy of Ryan Law)

Angie's List names the Worst Las Vegas Contractors of 2012

Worst Houston Contractors of 2012

Angie's List names the Worst Houston Contractors of 2012.

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Auction Sites

How Do Estate Sales Work?

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An estate sale professional will appraise, price and arrange everything you plan to sell. (Photo courtesy of Angie's List member J. Fletcher of Round Lake, Illinois)

Estate sale liquidators will appraise, advertise and coordinate a residential sale. An estate expert arranges items to attract buyers and discourage theft.

15 Tips for Dealing with Personal Property in Estates

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It's wise to enlist the help of a personal property appraiser to determine the worth of your personal property, says Hall. (Photo courtesy of Angie's List member Don B. of Los Angeles)
It's wise to enlist the help of a personal property appraiser to determine the worth of your personal property, says Hall. (Photo courtesy of Angie's List member Don B. of Los Angeles)

Life can become a blur when you need to liquidate an estate. Make sure the process goes smoothly with these experts tips for managing personal estate property.

7 Ways to Liquidate an Estate

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A good estate sale professional answers your questions including whether an estate sale is the best option for you, says Hall. (Photo courtesy of Angie's List member Christina R. of St. Louis)
A good estate sale professional answers your questions including whether an estate sale is the best option for you, says Hall. (Photo courtesy of Angie's List member Christina R. of St. Louis)

Handling an estate liquidation can be intimidating. Learn the options to know how to best handle the property in your specific situation for maximum returns.

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Home Appraisal

What is Chicago's Hottest Condo Market? The Answer May Surprise You

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Condo prices in Chicago's Gold Coast neighborhood currently average $545,500.  (Photo by Steven Jack)
Condo prices in Chicago's Gold Coast neighborhood currently average $545,500. (Photo by Steven Jack)

The average listing price of a condo unit in Chicago continues to climb. The priciest units are in Streeterville, Old Town, the Gold Coast and River North.

Is That Letter About Your Property Deed Legit? N.C. AG Says Beware Scam

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home (Photo by Courtney St. Onge)
Homeowners should ignore mail notices seeking a payment for title information. (Photo by Courtney St. Onge)

The mail arrives in an official looking envelope and says you need to pay for a copy of your property deed. They know details of your home and are banking on what you don't know.

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Self Storage

5 Tips to Pack Away Holiday Dishes like a Pro

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Packing dishes can be the trickiest part of storing holiday decor, says McHolm. (Photo by NorthStar Moving )
Packing dishes can be the trickiest part of storing holiday decor, says McHolm. (Photo by NorthStar Moving )

No more chipped Christmas plates: Keep your holiday dishes looking merry and bright each year with these five professional tips for packing fragile tableware.

Which is better: Self-Storage Units or Portable Storage Containers?

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Storage facility
Learn how to decide between renting a storage facility or having a storage container delivered to your home. (Photo courtesy of member Mark R. of Sparks, Nevada)

Whether you have too much stuff or you need a temporary holding place for your things during a move, here's which storage type works best for your situation.

Is My Stuff Protected in a Rented Storage Unit?

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It's important to educate yourself about the storage facility’s policies regarding losses on the premises, says McClain. (Photo courtesy of Angie's List member Corey S. of Phoenix)
It's important to educate yourself about the storage facility’s policies regarding losses on the premises, says McClain. (Photo courtesy of Angie's List member Corey S. of Phoenix)

Before you place your belongings in a rented storage unit, it's important to know the policies. One highly rated provider shares the details about storage.

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