FEATURED POST

New York gubernatorial candidate Jimmy McMillan's message is still going strong even after he lost the election.

By Mai Ling at MSN Real Estate Nov 8, 2010 12:05PM

Jimmy McMillan may have lost the election to New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo earlier this month, but the candidate for the "Rent Is Too Damn High" party is continuing to gain fans even after the election.

 

The "Saturday Night Live" skit certainly didn't hurt (view the skit on NBC here), and below we've also linked to the song "Rent: Too Damn High!" which was created from McMillan's now-famous speech.

 

Not familiar with the glove-wearing, chops-sporting candidate who drew chuckles at the televised face-off for the state's seven candidates? Read more about him on The Wall Street Journal, then watch the following video:

 

Richmond, California, would buy mortgages — but not homes — to reduce residents' debt burdens.

By MSN Real Estate partner 18 hours ago

By Nick Timiraos, The Wall Street Journal

 

Post begins below video

 

Forget appliances and china — couples headed to the altar are signing up for cash-gift registries to fund home projects.

By MSN Real Estate partner 19 hours ago

© Jamie Grill, PhotolibraryBy Stefanos Chen, The Wall Street Journal

 

With their wedding approaching, the last thing Daryl Fox and Hootan Khatami, wanted was clutter.

 

"We really didn't need a toaster or any of the wacky gifts people give," said Fox, a 49-year-old book publisher. Before their 2013 wedding, he and Khatami were already settled into their penthouse apartment in New York's Chelsea neighborhood.

 

So instead of offering guests the typical choices, they signed up for an online cash-gift registry and netted close to $7,000 toward a home-renovation fund to update their three-story space. Wedding-day gift envelopes added to the fund.

 

Last week's 7.9 percent surge was driven mostly by people refinancing loans.

By MSN Real Estate partner 19 hours ago

Red Arrow Pointing Upward © Fotosearch, Fotosearch, Getty ImagesBy Diana Olick, CNBC CNBC


Despite adjustments for the Labor Day holiday the previous week, mortgage applications surged last week, even amid rising rates.


Total application volume rose 7.9 percent week-to-week, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA), driven mostly by refinances, which doesn't jibe with the rise in rates.


Applications to refinance rose 10 percent from the previous week, but are still down 22.5 percent on year. Mortgage applications to purchase a home rose 5 percent from the previous week but are down 10 percent on year.

 
Tags: loans

An index measuring builder sentiment is at its highest point since October 2005, buoyed by wage gains.

By MSN Real Estate partner 19 hours ago

© Associated PressBy Jeanna Smialek, Bloomberg

 

Confidence among U.S. home builders rose in September to a nine-year high, showing the industry is gaining ground and will be a source of momentum for the economy.

 

The National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo sentiment measure climbed to 59 exceeding the highest estimate in a Bloomberg survey of economists, from 55 in August, the Washington-based group reported on Wednesday. Readings above 50 mean more respondents said conditions were good.

 

The couple rented this Holmby Hills, California, mansion until moving to Paris. It's listed for $45 million after a price cut.

By MSN Real Estate partner Tue 11:14 AM

ZillowBy Emily Heffter, Zillow

 

Music super-couple Jay Z and Beyonce camped out this summer at this 16,000-square-foot rental, spending about a month in the luxurious spec house before moving on to Paris.

 

Variety first reported their stay in the Holmby Hills home, which has been on the market since April, originally offered for $48 million and now listed for $45 million.

 

Variety reported that the rent was somewhere in the neighborhood of $200,000 for the month. That’s nothing for Jay and Bey, whose "On the Run" tour packed hundreds of stadiums across the country this summer. The tour was dogged by reports that their marriage was on the rocks.

 
Tags: celebrity

Christopher Plummer, known for his roles in "The Sound of Music" and other films, lived in the waterfront estate for about seven years.

By MSN Real Estate partner Tue 11:01 AM

ZillowBy Emily Heffter, Zillow

 

A Connecticut waterfront home that once belonged to actor Christopher Plummer is for sale, and you'd almost expect to see the von Trapp children marching around the property in their lederhosen.

 

Plummer has famously been critical of "The Sound of Music,' saying people are "unnaturally sentimental" about the film that made him a star.

 

Still, his former Connecticut home bears some resemblance to Capt. von Trapp's fictional waterfront residence in Austria. Plummer lived here from 1974 until 1981.

 
Tags: celebrity

A suburban lifestyle has some clear advantages -- often better schools and more space -- but it's not for everyone.

By MSN Real Estate partner Tue 10:39 AM

© Caiaimage/Paul Bradbury/Getty ImagesBy AJ Smith, Credit.com

 

Figuring out where you should live can be difficult. If your options include a city, rural area or suburb, it's a good idea to weigh the advantages and disadvantages specific to your family and each living environment. Factors like real estate taxes, property size, property value, schools and space can help you compare the unique benefits of living in the suburbs over living downtown or in the country.

 

If you are having trouble deciding, check out some of the great aspects of living between an urban center and a rural area.

 

Find out how you can increase your home's energy efficiency and save up to 10 percent on your annual utility bills by updating just one thing: the insulation.

By MSN Real Estate partner Tue 9:43 AM

PM Images/Getty ImagesBy Jeffrey Anderson, Improvement Center

 

Utility costs can become a big chunk of your monthly budget -- especially if you happen to live where temperatures in the summer or winter get extreme. But something in the walls is already saving you money, and could be saving you even more. Adding insulation is one of the easiest ways to increase your home's energy efficiency. How much could it save you, you ask? The government's Energy Star website estimates that a typical family in an average-size home could save up to 10 percent on their annual energy costs by sealing off points of air intrusion and installing more insulation. It's just a matter of knowing what type of insulation to use and where it should go.

 
 

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