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Hot Property: Mother-daughter condominiums

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

LOS ANGELES -- The family that buys real estate together stays together, apparently.

"Keeping Up With the Kardashians" matriarch Kris Jenner and her daughter Kim Kardashian West have both bought condominiums at Avanti, a new upscale community in Calabasas. Jenner paid $1.497 million and $1.65 million for two separate residences; Kardashian West...Read more

FBI: Home buyers' billion-dollar scam problem getting worse

Consumer / The Nation's Housing /

WASHINGTON -- In this year of horrendous cyberheists -- Equifax the most prominent -- you've probably taken at least a few precautions: changed passwords, stopped opening files and links from unknown senders, upgraded your computer security measures, maybe put a freeze on your credit reports.

But if you're buying a house and heading to ...Read more

Here's How: Strip Wallpaper Like a Pro

Consumer / Here's How /

Dear James: I remodeled the kitchen and have damaged the wallpaper in spots, so I thought I would just go with painted walls. What is the best way to strip the wallpaper without damaging the drywall? -- Michelle C.

Dear Michelle: It can be difficult to repair the damaged wallpaper without it being obvious. Even if you have saved some of the ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: How Easy It Is to Become Blinded by Easy Credit

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

It makes me laugh now, but years ago, when I watched a particular episode of the television show "Little House on the Prairie," I was so judgmental. Whaaaat?! Are you kidding me? Pleeeeease, not Pa!

Seems the owners of Oleson's Mercantile had some newfangled system where they would trust Pa to take stuff without paying, put it on his bill and ...Read more

The Journey: 2nd or 3rd time around –– money matters

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

If gray divorce doesn't rain down enough financial stress on a retirement plan, a second (or third) marriage or domestic partnership certainly will. What to do?

Heading into a new committed relationship means both partners need to take stock of their retirement plans and legal documents, having detailed conversations not only about how to split...Read more

Susan Tompor: 'Downtown' Josh Brown talks about bitcoin and boomers

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

"Downtown" Josh Brown, a panelist on CNBC's "Fast Money Halftime Report," isn't afraid to be blunt. Ask him to talk about what baby boomers need to do if they're edgy about what's driving the Dow Jones industrial average beyond 23,000 and he gives you quite an earful.

Brown says someone who is 65 now cannot afford to take all the risk off the ...Read more

Bad news for tenants: Bay Area rents are still rising in dozens of cities across the region

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

SAN JOSE, Calif. -- A new report dissecting rent trends across the Bay Area is filled with bad news for tenants. With a handful of exceptions, today's rents are higher in most of the region's cities than they were a year ago.

The fastest rent growth was in Concord, where year-over-year rents were up 7.3 percent, according to the report from the...Read more

A new social phenomenon in an intense housing market: 'Are you interested in selling?'

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

SEATTLE -- Bring me your ghosts and ghouls, your Wonder Women and White Walkers. Bring Pennywise and Eleven, Fake Melania and Harvey Weinstein in a bathrobe.

Nothing this Halloween will scare me as much as The People Who Want My House.

Three times in the last few weeks, someone has asked, point-blank and apropos of nothing, if I was interested...Read more

Got old smoke detectors? It's OK to put them in the garbage

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

Q: What can I do with a household full of ionization smoke alarms, which say they contain ninth-tenths of a microcurie of the radioactive material americium? I've tried calling everyone I can think of, but nobody has been able to give me an answer.

S.F., of Belleville

A: I know it probably defies common sense, but Keep Northern Illinois ...Read more

Real estate Q&A: Deeding your home to children? Avoid pain and probate with 'living trust' or 'life estate deed'

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

Q: Our friend bought a condo five years ago and put her son's name on the deed just in case something happened to her. Now she wants to take his name off and he is refusing to cooperate. She paid for the condo, lives there and covers the expenses. What can she do? – David

A: In my experience, people will often include the names of their ...Read more

How Fort Lauderdale's long-overlooked downtown became South Florida's latest hotspot

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

MIAMI -- For many years, as once-dismal downtowns in Miami and West Palm Beach were transformed by sweeping redevelopment and an influx of fresh-faced residents hungry for some urban sizzle, Fort Lauderdale's city center remained by comparison an overlooked patch of sleepy streetscape.

How swiftly things change in South Florida.

Fort ...Read more

The Mortgage Professor: Another look at simple interest mortgages

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

Over the years, I have received a steady flow of inquiries and complaints about simple interest mortgages (SIMs), and have written several articles explaining how they work and how borrowers should deal with them. In doing this, I always viewed SIMs as the product of outdated practices, which in time would disappear. Only recently have I become ...Read more

The Mortgage Professor: Another look at simple interest mortgages

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

Over the years, I have received a steady flow of inquiries and complaints about simple interest mortgages (SIMs), and have written several articles explaining how they work and how borrowers should deal with them. In doing this, I always viewed SIMs as the product of outdated practices, which in time would disappear. Only recently have I become ...Read more

3 housing myths, debunked: Poverty, property values, and gentrification

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

CHICAGO -- Homeownership can come with a hefty supply of emotions, paperwork and financial planning. And as one grows more attached to a residence over the years, feelings often deepen as house becomes home and memories start to accumulate.

So when terms like gentrification, poverty and low-income housing are bandied about in your neighborhood,...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: Please Don't Touch the Retirement Accounts

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

I know it's hard. I know you're desperate. You're stressed and losing sleep. Things are tough. You have to do something, and soon. But whatever you do, don't touch your retirement account. Don't borrow against it. Don't withdraw from it. Leave it alone.

What's so bad about liquidating a retirement account?

Momentum. Even if your retirement ...Read more

Seattle marks a full year as America's hottest housing market, with no end in sight

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

SEATTLE -- Seattle is now a full year into its reign as the hottest housing market in the country, an unusually long surge that doesn't look likely to end anytime soon.

Single-family home prices across the metro area grew 13.2 percent in August compared to a year prior, easily the most in the nation and twice the U.S. average, according to the ...Read more

A new social phenomenon in an intense housing market: 'Are you interested in selling?'

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

Bring me your ghosts and ghouls, your Wonder Women and White Walkers. Bring Pennywise and Eleven, Fake Melania and Harvey Weinstein in a bathrobe.

Nothing this Halloween scared me as much as 'The People Who Want My House.'

Three times in the last few weeks, someone has asked, point-blank and apropos of nothing, if I was interested in selling ...Read more

Here's the best place to survive if there's a nuclear apocalypse

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Do escalating tensions with North Korea have you scared of a nuclear apocalypse?

If you're a resident of the Kansas City metro area, you have less to worry about: The city has the best shot at survival out of the 200 largest metro areas in the country, according to Realtor.com.

The site analyzed home and property attributes...Read more

How I Spent 40 Bucks to Avoid Surgery

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

It was a total self-inflicted injury. I did a really stupid thing.

Early one Saturday morning, I heard the doorbell chime, which reminded me I'd set up an appointment with a landscape guy. Not wanting a second ring to wake my husband, I flew like a flash from one end of the house to the other in socks ... and down the wooden stairs.

When I hit...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: The High Cost of Being Hopeless With Math

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

"I don't do math. Numbers give me a rash." That's a line I've used a lot, mostly because it's true but also because it gets me a laugh.

Truth be told, most of us stink when it comes to doing math on the fly. That's a problem because being hopeless with math makes us putty in the hands of retailers.

Why is it socially acceptable to say that we'...Read more