Houston Real Estate Blogosphere
Houston Real Estate Blogosphere brings together all the blog posts of REALTORS from the Houston area in one place
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Safety & Security

The most recently published posts in the Safety & Security category
A released study lends more support to the idea that where you live can affect your health. In an experiment that started in the 1990s, the federal government offered thousands of low-income women living in public housing in Los Angeles, Baltimore, Chicago, New York, and Boston an opportunity to move to a more affluent neighborhood and see if it improved their health.   Now more than a decad...
Read Post [Posted on 07/26/2014 By John Askins]
Foreclosed homes may have a lot of negative energy lurking, from missing appliances, dirty carpets, cracked walls, and any number of other problems from not being cared for properly from the previous home owner. The foreclosure crisis has sparked an increase in an unusual business: More buyers are asking for ritual house cleansings before they move in to rid the home of it’s bad auras. Witches, ps...
Read Post [Posted on 07/26/2014 By John Askins]
In an odd twist of fate, a suburban home in Silver Spring, Md., where a middle school principal was shot to death had been the previous site of a 2002 murder of a man and his 9-year-old daughter.Real estate professional Ron Phipps, former president of the National Association of REALTORS® says a stigmatized property like that one will often sell at a discount unless the crime was so...
Read Post [Posted on 07/26/2014 By John Askins]
Working professionals tend to use their cars frequently. While staying accident-free may be one of your chief concerns when it comes to safety on the road, there's a new warning about hackers who may want to target your car.  McAfee, a security software provider, earlier this year issued a report that warns of a possible new danger lurking for vehicles coming from hackers who can tap ...
Read Post [Posted on 07/25/2014 By John Askins]
More home owners are falling prey to scams that promise to “stop the foreclosure” and “save your home.” The Federal Trade Commission has released a report to help borrowers avoid falling victim to such scams, here are a few of its tips: 1. Watch for outlandish claims. "Eliminate your debt!" and "We guarantee to stop the auction" are too good to be true. If it sounds like an easy way out, don’t bel...
Read Post [Posted on 07/25/2014 By John Askins]
Americans continue to fall prey to a growing number of real estate scams — most often rental scams — on free classified ad sites. Craigslist, in particular, has been a site that housing experts have warned visitors to beware of when it comes to real estate transactions.  In Lynchburg, Va., a couple responded to an ad to rent a vacant home in the area, wiring $1,000 to the so-called land...
Read Post [Posted on 07/25/2014 By John Askins]
Home values in an area can get a big boost by reducing the amount of violent crime, according to a new study by the Center for American Progress. Communities that reduce violent crimes by 10 percent could potentially see billions of dollars in home price appreciation for the community or about a 0.8 percent increase in home prices, the study says.Researchers found that reducing murders in a partic...
Read Post [Posted on 07/24/2014 By John Askins]
One provision of the Dodd-Frank financial reform law requires lenders to provide consumers with a free credit score, which will help provide new insights into why they may have been rejected for a loan or did not qualify for the best, lowest rate. While borrowers can access their credit scores from the credit bureaus, the credit score that a lender uses isn’t always the same one that t...
Read Post [Posted on 07/24/2014 By John Askins]
To Tap or not to Tap is the ongoing question of the decade. Should you place a filter on your water from your refrigerator or faucet? Here are two articles that are worth the read. What's your decision? http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2010/03/100310/why-tap-water-is-better/ http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-living/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/expert-answers/tap-water/faq-20058017 ...
Read Post [Posted on 07/23/2014 By Chantell Newsome]
When reviewing their credit reports, one in five consumers are likely to receive a different credit score from what a creditor will use to price a loan, according to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. The discrepancy has the agency concerned. Lenders use credit scores to help determine the interest rate they’ll charge customers—with higher credit scores often receiving the best rates. “Many...
Read Post [Posted on 07/21/2014 By John Askins]
Texas Governor Rick Perry has directed the Texas Land Office to be the lead agency for the management of the state's hurricane recovery efforts.The land office, which is responsible for managing public lands, administers U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development grants to disaster areas, bringing more accountability to the state's hurricane relief efforts.During hurricanes ...
Read Post [Posted on 07/21/2014 By John Askins]
If you have a mortgage on your home and you live in a high-risk flood zone, in most cases, your lender requires you to buy flood insurance.However, if you live in a moderate- to low-risk zone, and your community belongs to the National Flood Insurance Program (most do), then you have the option of buying it.If you’re in the latter category, your first question probably is, “How much does...
Read Post [Posted on 07/20/2014 By Kimberly Oldfield]
What makes a city great for older adults? According to a report, the community must offer quality health care, educational and employment opportunities, a strong economy, and transportation, according to the Milken Institute’s Best Cities for Successful Aging Index, which used these among 78 indicators to rank the top areas for seniors. "The traditional notions about retirement, about pulling up s...
Read Post [Posted on 07/20/2014 By John Askins]
Clients and their real estate professionals often must evaluate environmental risks associated with property deals. Identifying, assessing, and minimizing such risks has become more complicated in light of several recent developments: most notably, changes to risk evaluation standards; a renewed regulatory emphasis on environmental compliance and enforcement; and a spate of transactions ...
Read Post [Posted on 07/18/2014 By John Askins]
Household sizes are growing: More home owners are renovating homes to add second units so they can take in roommates to bring in extra cash or have a space for aging parents or adult children who want to move back home.  Michael Litchfield, author of In-Laws, Outlaws and Granny Flats, says many of these second units are either converted garages, attics, unused rooms or basements, or a...
Read Post [Posted on 07/18/2014 By John Askins]
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