Category Archives: Homebuying

Review: The Holmes Inspection

The Holmes Inspection: The Essential Guide for Every Homeowner, Buyer and Seller, is a book written by Mike Holmes. This author is both a contractor and the host of a couple HGTV series. He also runs a home inspection and certification company. Ultimately Mike is well qualified to write this no-nonsense book outlining what to look for when purchasing a home. Although the text appears thorough and complete with checklists, the author is clear – this isn’t a do it yourself guide. Doing your own inspection is like operating on yourself, or representing yourself in court. Yes, you can do it. But should you? Continue reading Review: The Holmes Inspection

Is Your Home a Good Investment?

With skyrocketing appreciation, homes look like a smoking hot investment. Warren Buffet just listed his California vacation home for $11 million. Considering he purchased this home in 1971 for only $150,000. That’s an annual appreciation rate of 9.79 percent! Regular homeowners may not realize Buffet’s gains, but they’re still seeing healthy appreciation. Does that mean homes are good investments? Continue reading Is Your Home a Good Investment?

Review: Zillow Talk

Zillow Talk: The New Rules of Real Estate, is a unique and previously impossible look into the home buying market by two Zillow insiders. Author Spencer Rascoff is Zillow’s CEO. While coauthor Stan Humphries is Zillow’s Chief Economist. Utilizing the company’s vast information about home values, the authors debunk common real estate assumptions. This data driven research also uncovers previously unknown patterns or rules about today’s home values that aren’t always intuitive or obvious.  Continue reading Review: Zillow Talk

8 Timeless Rules of Affordable Building

An affordable kit home from Sears & Roebuck, circa 1920s.

Today’s regulations, combined with consumer culture make affordable building more difficult than ever. Not only do codes require expensive construction (for noble reasons like safety and energy efficiency). Homeowners consider luxuries standard amenities. “The new refrigerator isn’t wifi enabled – what’s wrong with you?” Continue reading 8 Timeless Rules of Affordable Building