In the next six months, 67 percent of consumers may be making over some part of their home, according to a survey.

By MSN Real Estate partner 15 hours ago

© Digital Vision/PhotolibraryBy Scott Gamm, MainStreet


Consumers are shelling out money to improve their homes, a new survey says.


According to, 67 percent of consumers plan to renovate within the next six months and some 32 percent will spend over $10,000 on renovations.


"This shows there is some disposable income out there among homeowners," says Leslie Piper, a housing specialist with "There is a lot more consumer confidence out there and this is a great direction for the real estate market."


Some 32 percent of respondents cited improving the home's appearance as the reason for renovating, while 22 percent linked the renovations to preparing the home for a future sale. Only 11 percent said the renovations where to improve the property's value.


She started in a studio -- and in L.A., it may set her back $1,405 a month.

By MSN Real Estate partner 15 hours ago

Bethany Clarke/Getty ImagesBy Natalie Grigson, Movoto


The Barbie we know and love today has come a long way from her more modest (and more brunette) roots.


Sure, it seems Barbie may have had some reconstructive surgery since her introduction in 1959, and yes, she may have spent a few too many hours in the tanning salon, but here at the Movoto Real Estate Blog, we aren't concerned with such things.


We're more concerned with Barbie's house.


Since 1959, the "Barbie Dream House" has undergone some major renovations — even more so than Barbie's face. In fact, the pink mansion that little girls and curious boys know as Barbie's home today started out as something different and something that most of us can relate to: a studio apartment.

Tags: celebrity

The actor has listed his 603-square-foot Hollywood house for $808,000.

By MSN Real Estate partner 20 hours ago

ZillowBy Emily Heffter, Zillow


Among Hollywood actors, there are no small parts — but there are small houses, and Vincent Kartheiser's house is perhaps one of Hollywood's smallest. The actor, who portrays Pete Campbell on television show "Mad Men," posed in Dwell magazine last year in his cleverly designed tiny house.


Now he has listed his 603-square-foot, one-bedroom, 1.5-bath Hollywood home for sale for $808,000. Perhaps he's searching for a new space that is better for two — the actor is engaged to co-star Alexis Bledel.

Tags: celebrity

The country-music stars' beach retreat is a 'pocket listing,' with one report putting its price at $7.5 million.

By MSN Real Estate partner Tue 11:22 AM

The AgencyBy Emily Heffter, Zillow


Country-music superstars Trisha Yearwood and Garth Brooks have listed their Malibu, California, getaway for sale. They purchased the four-bed, 3.5-bath ranch home above Paradise Cove in 2008 — right after it had undergone an extensive remodel.


The soon-to-be empty-nesters are moving back to Nashville, Tennessee, from Oklahoma, and recently unloaded another piece of property, Yearwood's Brentwood home outside Nashville.

Tags: celebrity

In the second quarter, 64.7 percent of Americans owned homes.

By MSN Real Estate partner Tue 9:33 AM

© Stockbyte/SuperStockBy Prashant Gopal, Bloomberg


The homeownership rate in the U.S. fell to a 19-year low as rising prices and tight credit kept many first-time buyers out of the property market.


The share of Americans who own their homes was 64.7 percent in the second quarter, down from 64.8 percent in the previous three months, the Census Bureau said in a report today. The rate matched the level in the second quarter of 1995.


Housing has become less affordable and more difficult to finance for entry-level buyers, even as mortgage rates have held close to record lows. First-time purchasers accounted for 28 percent of all sales of previously owned homes in June, compared with about 40 percent historically, according to the National Association of Realtors.


The pace of home-price gains slipped to 9.3 percent in May after April's 10.8 percent growth, according to the latest S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index.

By MSN Real Estate partner Tue 8:01 AM

By Nick Timiraos, The Wall Street Journal


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Seventy percent of Fannie Mae survey respondents say now is a good time to buy a home.

By MSN Real Estate partner Mon 2:46 PM

Big Cheese Photo/Getty ImagesBy Scott Gamm, MainStreet


After housing woes shocked the economy in 2008, consumers are slowly becoming more confident about the housing market.


According to Fannie Mae's National Housing Survey from June, 70 percent of respondents say it is a good time to buy a home, while consumers' average 12-month home-price change expectation stands at 2.4 percent.


"Since we began collecting monthly National Housing Survey data in June 2010, we've seen substantial progress in consumer home price expectations and other key attitudinal measures as the housing recovery gained its footing," said Doug Duncan, senior vice president and chief economist at Fannie Mae. "Still, we do not expect to see 'normal' levels of new residential construction, in the region of 1.6 million new housing units per year, before the end of 2016, our original projection. Such a feat would require a pace of growth in housing starts not seen in decades."


Cutting back on amenities can help reduce the monthly cost.

By MSN Real Estate partner Mon 1:51 PM

Getty ImagesBy Jon Lal, U.S. News & World Report


Summer is peak season for relocating because of the nice weather and the fact that people tend to have more free time on their hands. Many people looking to move might not be ready to buy a home, and instead need a place to rent.


If you're already a renter, you know it can be a challenge to find an apartment you can afford that also suits your needs. The price of an apartment can depend on location, amenities, demand and many other factors.


To avoid paying too much upfront, as well as getting stuck in a lease you really can't afford, consider the following before signing on the dotted line.

Tags: rentals


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