Michael Klacik's blog

2015 Housing Market May Be Best Since 2006

The halfway point of 2015 is almost here, and if housing trends continue, this year could mark the best since the height of the real estate bubble in 2006. New home sales and pending home sales in April rose 26% and 14% respectively from last year. In fact, home sales are projected to reach nearly 6 million, on par with the first year of decline in 2007. However, the numbers being seen now are not signs of another bubble, according to realtor.com's Jonathan Smoke. Instead, this year's market is being driven by the more than 3 million jobs created in the last 12 months. Of those, more than 1 million have been in the 25- to 34-year-old age range, where most first-time home buyers fall.

Best Landscaping Projects to Add Value to Your Home

Whether it is installing new windows or finishing a basement, your home can benefit from many different improvement projects. However, one of the most important investments you can make as a homeowner is in your house's landscaping. Beautiful landscaping not only adds value to your home, but also makes it stand out to potential buyers by boosting its curb appeal. In fact, good landscaping can raise the value of a house by 28%, and upgrading existing landscaping from good to excellent can reap rewards of 6-7%. Here are some of the most crucial components to amazing landscaping!

Buying Now Can Save You Over $200,000

Realtor.com has just released their very first Opportunity Cost Report, which details the potential cost savings to be had by buying a home now rather than later. Financial factors such as the cost of renting and current homeownership advantages for each market were analyzed in an attempt to put an exact dollar amount on long-term gains associated with immediate home purchase. The result? The average buyer can expect rewards totaling $217,726 over a 30-year period.

While there is significant variation between different housing markets, the report found that 88% of metro areas show financial benefits of over $100,000 for buying now. A variety of elements fuel these huge numbers, including the projected increases in interest rates, home prices, and rent. Here are the 10 markets with the greatest potential gains in wealth: