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Natasha Frost: 4 steps to avoiding a horrible co-living situation

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

With the unemployment rate at its highest since the Great Depression, perhaps you're one of the many Americans currently having difficult conversations -- or avoiding one -- on the topic of sharing space.

That might mean welcoming a roommate into your home, crashing with Mom and Pop for the foreseeable future, or taking the plunge to work from ...Read more

Some homeowners struggled to pay PACE improvement loans. The coronavirus made it harder

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

LOS ANGELES -- It wasn't until the work was done that Marcelino and Josefina Rodriguez said they learned the truth.

They had been signed up for a roughly $45,000 PACE home improvement loan at nearly 10% interest -- even though they said a woman working with the contractor told them their new roof and water heater would be free through a ...Read more

Real estate Q&A: Who has to pay for place to stay while rental home is tented for termites?

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

Q: We rent a single-family home and just found out that it needs to be tented for termites early next month. The landlord told us she would reduce our rent for the time we need to stay in a hotel. Money is tight, and a few days of rent reduction will not cover the cost of a hotel and meals. We want her to pay for these too. This is a massive ...Read more

Is your property a flood risk? New tool shows millions are, including entire Florida towns

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

A new app designed to rank the flood risk for every property in the U.S. has some distressing findings for Florida.

The cities with the most properties at risk are all over the state -- from Tampa, the city most at risk to storm surge, to Cape Coral, which Politico memorably dubbed "the boomtown that shouldn't exist," to sunny-day flooded Miami...Read more

Carla Fried: 7 ways employers set up millennials to fail at retirement saving

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

You've got a workplace retirement plan. Fabulous! But there's plenty your employer likely isn't telling you -- or doing for you --that's costing you money. Here's how your employer might be letting you down:

--We probably set you up to leave money on the table. Most workplace plans offer an employer-matching contribution, based on some sort of...Read more

Carla Fried: Instead of skipping medical care, bargain for a better price

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

Millions of people forgo needed medical attention -- doctor visits, surgeries, prescriptions and testing -- because they either lack insurance or the cost of using their policies is too great. It's also complicated, a world of bewildering forms and websites, and seemingly unexplained denials of payment.

Before you delay care, consider ways you ...Read more

CNN Center is for sale, but employees will remain in Atlanta

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

WarnerMedia is putting CNN Center, the longtime Atlanta-based facility for the cable news network, up for sale.

The company made the decision to sell the property known to employees on Monday. But it won't mean any dislocation for them or that the network is abandoning the city it has called home since 1980.

CNN already has employees at the ...Read more

Carla Fried: Plan your own funeral, cheaply, and leave behind a happier family

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

Navigating the death of a loved one is an intensely personal journey. It is also a very big business that can put a financial strain on the surviving family.

The death care industry -- yep, it's got its own industry moniker -- is an estimated $20 billion business. Service Corporation International, a publicly traded company that operates 1,475 ...Read more

Carla Fried: Why couples need to manage retirement accounts as a team

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

The intricacies of a spouse or partner's workplace retirement plan will never rank as scintillating pillow talk, but the topic can prove profitable. Couples who coordinate their strategy by playing to each plan's strengths and avoiding weaknesses are going to land in retirement with more money saved up.

Yet a recent survey of more than 5,000 ...Read more

Hudson Pacific sells share of Hollywood studios to Blackstone

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

LOS ANGELES -- Los Angeles developer Hudson Pacific Properties Inc. said Monday that it will sell a 49% stake in its three historic Hollywood studios to an affiliate of New York investment firm Blackstone in a deal that values the properties at $1.65 billion.

The transaction includes Sunset Bronson, Sunset Gower and Sunset Las Palmas studios, ...Read more

Free stock-trade apps: Power to the people, or new ways for Wall Street to rip you off?

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

Free stock-trading smartphone apps like Robinhood, Firstrade and Stockpile are attracting a wave of new investors, and are helping to prop up U.S. stock markets despite the headwinds of the coronavirus.

Alongside such familiar software-based stocks as Amazon, Facebook and Google, their investments have boosted shares of some obscure and money-...Read more

Life skills: How to decide if you should have sex with someone you don't live with during the pandemic

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

Q: With stay-at-home orders lifting in some areas, how can you have safe sex with someone outside of your home during the COVID-19 pandemic?

A: If you are thinking of having sex with someone you know or someone you have been in a relationship with, and you trust that this person has practiced social distancing and hand-washing, then great, ...Read more

Hot Property: Kunal Nayyar of 'Big Bang Theory' flips the script in Hollywood Hills

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

LOS ANGELES -- Actor Kunal Nayyar is hoping to end his time in Hollywood Hills with a bang. The "Big Bang Theory" star and his wife, fashion designer and model Neha Kapur, have put their compound on the market for $3.995 million.

The leafy spot spans half an acre and makes the most of its space with a Mediterranean-style villa and a pair of ...Read more

Black homeowners pay more than 'fair share' in property taxes

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

A national reckoning with racism, combined with the economic damage wrought by the pandemic, is prompting some state and local officials to take a closer look at an issue that has long bedeviled Black homeowners: inflated property tax assessments.

For decades, white tax assessors placed a heavier tax burden on Black residents by intentionally ...Read more

Real estate Q&A: Can my landlord end my lease early?

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

Q: My lease extends through early next year, but my landlord wants me to leave early so she can sell the home in September. I have always paid my rent on time and keep the house clean. Do I have to move out early? -- Anonymous

A: No, your landlord must honor the terms of the lease.

A lease is a type of contract between a property owner and a ...Read more

Coronavirus fallout: Is commercial real estate headed for a crash?

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

SAN DIEGO -- Within the next week, David Marino will list nearly 300,000 square feet of sublease office space in San Diego's Sorrento Mesa neighborhood that current tenants no longer need.

For Marino, a principal at the Hughes Marino commercial real estate brokerage firm that specializes in representing tenants, these subleases are an early ...Read more

Natasha Frost: Vacation destination as home? Think like a resident

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

You and your spouse visited Savannah, Ga., for a weekend, fell in love, and it's become your go-to getaway. And why not? The city boasts world class restaurants and culture, Southern charm and bed-and-breakfasts, and boutique hotels and Airbnbs that could grace the cover of a design magazine.

A life transition approaches -- retirement, say, or ...Read more

Natasha Frost: The 3 best cities for a remote tech job

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

You've just got the job offer of a lifetime: a software engineer role at Twitter. For months, you'd been waiting for the call, to pack up your life and relocate to Silicon Valley, in one of the nation's most expensive zip codes. But COVID-19 has changed all that. Now, the social media company is allowing its workers to work from home -- forever,...Read more

Lynnley Browning: Not all internships are canceled — snag one and show your grit

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

As the coronavirus pandemic spread, summer work internships, a seasonal rite of passage for millions of college students, looked iffy. Up to one in three stints was canceled, stoking student fears of diminished career prospects down the road.

With the economy partially re-opening, some summer-gig watchers now expect a fresh crop of internships ...Read more

Carla Fried: Leaving finances to the husband — not wise

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

A divide-and-conquer approach to managing a household seems essential during COVID-19. For married and partnered couples with kids, juggling work (or the anxiety of a layoff), home schooling and the emotional and physical challenges of shelter-in-home is insanely demanding.

Relying on one's significant other to handle X and Y while you nail ...Read more