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Where Termites Tend to Be the Worst

Watch out in Miami, Los Angeles, and Tampa, Fla.: These places can be hotbeds for termites, according to Orkin’s 2021 Top 50 Termite Cities List.Orkin, a national pest control company, reports an uptick in termite treatments across the country over the past year.“With people spending more time at home in 2020, termites and termite damage were likely observed more frequently than in previous years,” Orkin said in its study. “Parallel to th

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The 50 Most Competitive Housing Markets

Competition is fierce among house hunters. For buyers in San Jose, Calif., San Francisco, and Raleigh, N.C., they should be ready to face the most competition in the nation, according to new research by LendingTree.LendingTree ranked the 50 largest metro areas in the U.S. based on the competitiveness of their housing markets. They factored in the average down payment percentage, the share of home buyers who have credit scores above 720, and the s

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Handle Square Footage Issues

Square footage is important in home sales and a key number for helping to set a home’s price. But what happens when the square footage listed doesn’t match up to the appraisal? It’s not uncommon, but it can lead to a lot of questions and possible re-negotiations.Square footage is calculated when you measure how much floor space is in a home. Often times, the difference in square footage is over calculations of what constitutes official “l

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Property Taxes Jumped 5.4% in 2020

Homeowners may notice an increase in their property tax bills. Municipalities levied about $323 billion in property taxes on single-family homes in 2020, a 5.4% increase compared to 2019, according to ATTOM Data Solutions’ newest property tax analysis for nearly 87 million single-family homes in the U.S.The average tax on single-family homes nationwide in 2020 was $3,719—reflecting an effective tax rate of about 1.1%. But many areas of the co

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Vaccines, Stimulus is Fueling Seller Optimism

Americans are more upbeat about the idea of selling, particularly as the vaccine rollout continues and latest round of stimulus checks are distributed. That could come as hopeful news as many markets face severe housing shortages and buyers are increasingly being left with few choices of homes for sale.Fannie Mae’s Home Purchase Sentiment Index rose by 5.2 points in March to a reading of 81.7. The components on the index that increased the most

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Hotels Bank on Weddings to Help in Post-Pandemic Recovery

Hotels have been severely affected during the pandemic as stay-at-home orders and Americans’ caution cut down domestic travel. But they’re hopeful for a turnaround as the vaccine rollout continues, and they’re putting more focus on one area of their business: weddings and wedding receptions.Nearly half of all couples who had planned a wedding in 2020 either postponed their wedding until 2021 or later or held a small ceremony and delayed the

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Lenders are Tightening Up on Mortgage Loans

Beware: Your buyers could struggle to be approved for a home loan. As lenders tighten standards,  home loan approval is becoming more difficult, The Wall Street Journal reports.The Mortgage Bankers Association reports that mortgage credit availability, which measures lenders’ willingness to approve mortgages, is at its lowest level since 2014.“Because mortgage credit is more difficult to obtain, it is a more competitive environ

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10 Populous Counties with Attractive Housing Affordability

While home prices are quickly rising to the point of pricing out some buyers, low mortgage rates have helped to offset some of those higher prices.The median home price of single-family homes and condos in the first quarter of this year was still more affordable than the historical averages of 52% of the 552 counties analyzed by ATTOM Data Solutions. However, that figure is down from 63% in the first quarter of 2020 and from 95% in the first quar

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Where Housing Stock is Aging

The median age of the nation’s owner-occupied housing stock is 39 years. An area’s age of housing could be an important measurement for the real estate market.As Na Zhao, senior economist at the National Association of Home Builders, explains on the association’s Eye on Housing blog: “The age of the housing stock is an important remodeling market indicator. Older houses are less energy-efficient than new construction and ultimately will r

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Americans Prefer Investing in Homes Over Stocks

The pandemic may be shifting consumer preferences about what makes the best investment. A new study from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York asked respondents to rate which is a better investment: a home or a financial asset such as stocks?Ninety percent of respondents chose owning a primary residence over investing in the stock market. Additionally, more than 50% of survey respondents say they preferred to own a rental property over purchasing

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