Housing

Should You Live at Home to Save Money During College?

What would you say to shaving off about $10,000 a year from your college expenses? The average college graduate leaves school with more than $29,000 in student loan debt, but one common option to reduce that figure by thousands of dollars is to live at home instead of on campus. The average annual cost of room and …

Categories: Education, Family, Housing

25 Simple Ways to Cut the Cost of Moving

Let’s face it: Moving can be a pain in the rear end. My first few moving experiences were horrific. But after that, I was much more prepared, made arrangements well in advance,  and things went smoothly. Planning to relocate in the near future? Whether near or far, here are some hacks to streamline the process: …

Categories: Home and Life, Housing

Five Inexpensive Home Improvements for Winter

With the holidays behind us, many people are dreading winter and looking forward to the first signs of spring. Since spring is generally best spent tidying up and working on the outside of your property, winter offers a good chance to get the interior of your home in tip-top shape. There are plenty of upgrades you can do yourself with a limited budget, …

The Very New Deal: How FHA Mortgages Are Changing for 2015

By Peter Miller The federal government established the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) mortgage program in the 1930s under Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal, and it’s been a big hit ever since. In fact, more than 40 million FHA loans have been originated under the program, with large numbers going to first-time buyers. What makes the FHA …

Categories: Housing, Loans

How to Get Organized in 2015 Without Pulling Your Hair Out

A new year means resolutions may be weighing heavily on your mind. But instead of getting fit, eating healthier, returning to school, or taking more vacations, maybe you’ve resolved to get organized so you can take control of your life. Sounds like a phenomenal idea, but you’ll first need to clear the haze and organize your …

Insuring the Sharing Economy

Any doubt about the depth of wisdom of a mother’s time-honored aphorism to “share and share alike” has been laid to rest by the meteoric rise of the sharing economy. From Airbnb to Zipcar and an ever-growing list of collaborative enterprises, the opportunities for consumers and entrepreneurs abound almost equally. No matter whether you attribute …

College Financial Guide: Housing

A huge part of the college experience — and college costs — is housing. Before you sign that lease, choose your roommate, or start packing for the dorm, here is what you need to know to make the right choice for you and how to save: Living in the Dorms One of the most iconic …

Categories: Education, Housing

Best Home Equity Loan Rates for 2014

  Home equity loans hold undeniable appeal for many homeowners. They’re a convenient way to unlock some cash by tapping the value built up in your home — money you otherwise won’t see unless you sell your home for a profit. Though you can use a home equity loan for almost anything, they’re especially appropriate …

How to Make Money as an Airbnb Host

Anyone who has stayed at a nice hotel in the past decade knows it’s not cheap. When was the last time you stayed in a major city for under $100 a night? Or under $200 for that matter? There is money to be made in the lodging industry. And it’s never been easier for average …

Does It Make Sense to Never Own a Home?

Recently, I had a long email discussion with an old friend of mine who writes a popular gaming blog (I’m not going to name him because his opinions expressed here may be a bit controversial and it has no reason to spill over into his other work). Basically, his core idea is this: you should …

Categories: Housing

The Accidental Landlord

When I say real estate tycoon, your thoughts probably jump straight to Donald Trump or somebody on a reality show. Then you probably smile a little bit and think to yourself, “If only I had an investment property, I could be on my way to a mega-fortune in no time at all.” Well, if you …

What I Wish I Knew Before Buying Rental Property

In early 2006, my husband and I decided to purchase our first home in my hometown of Greenfield, Indiana. With 1,300 square feet, a few nice-sized bedrooms, and an open kitchen and living room, our first “starter home” was practically perfect for us. And since we had moved there from a one-bedroom apartment with only …

20 Money-Saving Tactics for Winter

A few days ago, we received our first measurable snowfall of the year, bringing us a two-inch blanket of snow that covered the world in white. It was a stark reminder that, although the calendar doesn’t quite say so (yet), winter has arrived. As anyone who has ever had to pay an energy bill north …

How to Find Cheap Home Insurance in 2015

Finding cheap home insurance should be easy. Just call up some insurance providers, compare prices and choose the lowest one. However, with the importance of proper homeowners insurance price isn’t always the best comparison point. After all, home insurance doesn’t just protect the structure of your house. It also protects your belongings and covers you …

Don’t Let That 1,000-Page Mortgage Application Scare You

By Peter Miller The 1,000-page mortgage application is here, but don’t be alarmed: It’s a paper tiger, a low barrier to financing, and no more frightening than a marshmallow. At first it may seem amazing that a loan application could be larger than a Tom Clancy novel, but it’s true. In fact, in today’s marketplace, …

How to Declutter Your Home in a Weekend Without Spending a Dime

When your home is a cluttered wreck, it can be hard to summon the motivation to tackle the chores you’ve been putting off and to toss or organize your scattered possessions. To make matters worse, you’re crunched for time and it’s tough to get anything done around the house, no matter how hard you try. I never seem to have …

33 Ways to Maximize a Small Living Space on a Budget

Whether you’ve recently escaped the confines of your parent’s home for the first time or recently relocated to a posh condo downtown, adjusting to a small living space can be difficult. During my adult years, I’ve lived in a tiny dorm room, a spacious apartment, and a beautiful home with limited square footage. And each …

Categories: Home and Life, Housing

29 Affordable DIY Projects That Take Less Than a Week

Time is limited, funds are tight, but you desperately want to make over a few elements of your humble abode’s exterior and interior. Are there any feasible solutions? Definitely, but the most ideal option is to put on your “handyman” cap and perform the tasks on your own. But, let me warn you in advance: …

Best Home Warranty Company for 2014

If you’re considering a home warranty to help protect you from costly home repairs, there are several companies that want your business. Unlike the big insurance companies that provide home, life, and auto policies, home warranty companies aren’t household names. For that reason, you may feel like you’re starting from square one in your search. …