New tax legislation was signed into law at the end of 2017, and it included some significant changes for homeowners. These changes took effect in 2018 and do not influence your 2017 taxes. Here’s a brief overview of Continue reading
Flipping houses can be an exciting venture, and if done correctly, can bring you the kind of return on investment that you have been seeking. But buying a house, renovating it quickly, and then selling it again isn’t as seamless as HGTV’s Flip or Flop and Fixer Upper make it look. It’s important that you be prepared for the never-televised wonkier side of property investing. When it comes to flipping, the most important consideration, tax experts say, is how long you hold a property. If you retain the property for more than a year, federal law rewards you by treating any profit from the sale as a long-term capital gain. That means the tax rate on your profit is much lower, maxing out at around 20% for investors even in the highest-income tax bracket. For those in lower brackets, the rate could be lower — even 0%. But if you flip in less than a year, Continue reading
- Check with your local government to see if there are any restrictionsregarding garage sales and promotional signage.
- Advertise online using Craigslist, twitter, on your Facebook page, gslr.com, or nextdoor.com.
- Put up flyers on local bulletin boards.
- Make clear concise signs that can be easily read from far away.
- Double check your signs by driving past them to make sure they are visible.
- Add balloons, pinwheels or streamers to your signs.
- Invite your neighbors to join your garage sale, the more things you have to sell the more people will stop by!
- Decide what to do if it rains.
- Keep small bills on hand to make change.
- Have grocery bags available for sold items.
- Make sure all items are clean and functional.
- Display more interesting items in the front.
- Clearly mark prices.
- Offer a “Free Box” towards front of sale.
- Display like items together.
- Have an extension cord and batteries available to show items work.
Seattle’s home-price increases keep surging ahead of the rest of the nation even as the local housing market is showing a clear trend of slowing a bit. Across Greater Seattle, the typical single-family house cost 10.4 percent more in November than a year ago, the biggest increase of any metro area in the country, according to the Case-Shiller home-price index. It’s the third straight month that the Seattle area led the nation as the hottest housing market after a nine-year stretch without being on top. Continue reading
You may have thought that coming up with a down payment was the greatest financial hurdle you’d face, but as you’ll soon come to learn, there are numerous expenses associated with owning a home. Here’s how to handle them.
1. Create a new budget
Given that your monthly mortgage payment is bound to differ from your previous rent payment, it might seem like a no-brainer that you’ll need to adjust your budget accordingly. But there’s more to it than that, because you may find that other costs change by virtue of your new home. For example, if you move from a two-room apartment to Continue reading
What if you could invest in something that earned enough profit to pay for your child’s college tuition and still kept your initial investment growing towards your own retirement? That’s the picture when you purchase a home or condo as an investment for college. There are options in every price bracket and investment models that work no matter how soon college starts for your kids.
Interest rates are historically low and the demand for housing is continually rising in our tech-rich, mild-weathered, green, economically-advantaged neck of the woods. Companies like Amazon, Microsoft, Google, SpaceX, Boeing and Facebook attract over 5,000 net new people per month to the Sound, giving the Pacific Northwest a very hot housing market that’s grown strongly for generations. Don’t you wish you had bought Mercer Island waterfront in the 1980’s? In a few years Continue reading
Start with the exterior
As with any time of year, make sure that the house looks well maintained and cared for, with eaves clean and minor repairs taken care of. While you can’t paint in winter, washing paintwork and siding with warm soapy water on a mild day can make a big difference. Make sure the windows are freshly washed as well; winter light has a way of highlighting grime.
Tend to foliage
Make sure that shrubs and Continue reading
2 Less is more. Simple decorations
can speak volumes more than a room
crowded with all kinds of knick-knacks. Choose recipes that are tried and true favorites.
3 Leave the cooking to someone else.
A caterer may cost the same as buying the
ingredients yourself. And even if it’s more expensive, it may be worth the time and headache you save. Continue reading
You wake up in a cold sweat. There’s something lurking in the dark, visible by flickering computer light. Something’s haunting you. It’s… the real estate listings! Deep down, you’d love to own a home, but whenever you take steps beyond idle window-shopping, a chill runs up your spine, and paralyzes you from moving ahead.
So in case you’re harboring some heebie-jeebies, here are some of home buyers’ top concerns — tackled head on so you know what you’re really dealing with.
Fear # 1: ‘I’m afraid I can’t afford a home’ Continue reading