Tagged With housing

Predicting the future is near impossible -- but that doesn‘t stop us all from having a red hot go. Human beings have been predicting the future since the beginning of history and the results range from the hilarious to the downright uncanny.

One thing all future predictions have in common: they‘re rooted in our current understanding of how the world works. It‘s difficult to escape that mindset. We have no idea how technology will evolve, so our ideas are connected to the technology of today.

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One big lesson we learned from the housing crisis: Don't buy more home than you can afford. There are a handful of rules for figuring out what that amount is, but this one considers the additional costs, beyond home price. With this rule, all of your housing-related expenses should be no more than 25 per cent of your gross income.

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The house I grew up in had a pretty limited square meterage, something I notice every time I visit my parents. It's essentially a two bedroom house with what amounts to a storage closet converted into a third bedroom when absolutely needed. The living room is very small and the kitchen is pretty tiny as well.

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The latest statistics on housing price changes in Australia suggest there's not much changing. The only shifts above 1 per cent in the last quarter were in Perth, which went up 1.8 per cent, and Canberra, which fell 1.1 per cent, according to figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

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Dear Lifehacker, I did a careful inspection of my new apartment, signed the lease, and moved in . . . but once I was there, problems cropped up left and right. How can I hold my landlord accountable for stuff that looked OK during the inspection, but fell apart after normal use? Thanks, Frustrated Tenant

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US-centric: Find potential roommates with Google maps mashup webapp Roomapes. To list your residence, enter a profile complete with rent amount, housing situation, listing description, and a picture. Search for available shares by geographic region or by zip code. Text listings (without the Google Maps) are also available. Roomapes is free and requires an email address to post yourself as an roommate who is seeking a new dig or to manage your listing. If you're looking for a new apartment, also consider previously mentioned Google Maps/Craigslist Mashup MapsKreig.

Roomapes

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Get your home ready for potentially damaging winter storms with eHow's detailed guide. Tips include rounding up outdoor furniture and items that might fly around in high winds, having a supply of flashlights and candles on hand, and stocking up on emergency foodstuffs. What's your best tip for preparing for a big 'un? Thoughts in the comments.

How to Prepare Your Home for a Winter Storm

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Conventional wisdom says that buying a home is a sound investment, and renting is throwing money out the window every month. But finance blogger Millionaire Mommy Next Door says that renting resulted in significant savings over buying a home:

I calculated the total cost of living in our home. Due to our sweat equity, our mortgage balance was very low ... but once I added property taxes, insurance, maintenance and, especially, lost opportunity costs (home equity not available to earn money), it became very clear that our shelter "need" was costing us too much in life energy.

Of course your situation depends on location, income, credit score, and real estate market, but this is an interesting look at an argument for renting you don't often hear. Photo by Lil Erna.

Rent, Grow Rich, Be Free I Get Richer as a Renter