If you are debating listing your house for sale this year, here is the #1 reason not to wait!
The National Association of REALTORS’ (NAR) Chief Economist, Lawrence Yun recently commented on the inventory shortage:
The latest Existing Home Sales Report shows that there is currently a 4.6-month supplyof homes for sale. This remains lower than the 6-month supply necessary for a normal market and 5.8% lower than June 2015.
The chart below details the year-over-year inventory shortages experienced over the last 12 months:
Anything less than a six-month supply is considered a “Seller’s Market.”
Meet with a local real estate professional who can show you the supply conditions in your neighborhood and assist you in gaining access to the buyers who are ready, willing and able to buy now!
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“With demand holding firm and homes selling even faster than a year ago, the notable increase in closings in recent months took a dent out of what was available for sale.
Realtors are acknowledging, with increasing frequency lately, that Realtors are acknowledging, with increasing frequency lately, that buyers continue to be frustrated by the tense competition and lack of affordable homes for sale in their market.”
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As larger houses occupy ever-smaller lots and the demand for outdoor living areas grows, privacy is at a premium. And it’s not just about prying eyes invading your space—you may want to shield your own view of your sunbathing neighbors and block out their chatter.
There are myriad ways to add privacy in the landscape, from putting in perimeter plantings to building fences, stone walls, or garden structures. Here, staggered wooden boards are stained in soft shades of black, yellow, green, and red. They create a one-of-a-kind privacy fence softened by shrubs in front and a feathery tree canopy overhead.
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When replacing your bathroom vanity, it can be tempting to install a similar style and move on. However, replacing your sink can be an incredible opportunity to create a focal point to your bathroom. Here are five sink ideas to get you started.
When replacing your bathroom vanity, it can be tempting to install a similar style and move on. However, replacing your sink can be an incredible opportunity to create a focal point to your bathroom, express your personal style, and add significant value to your home. HGTV states that kitchen and bath renovations increase the value of your home and have a high return on investment. There are so many options to update your bathroom space that it can be hard to decide which one is right for you. Luckily, we’ve compiled the five new sink ideas to help make that decision a little easier.
1. Top Mount
In some homes, the builder-installed flooring doesn’t extend beneath the vanity cabinet, which makes your options limited if you are not replacing your bathroom floor. In this case, reusing the same vanity with a new top-mount sink may be the best choice for you. A top-mount sink drops in and has an outer rim to create a finished look. Choosing a square or rectangular version will instantly modernize your space.
2. Under Mount
While the cost is comparable to a top mount, an under-mount sink will only work with a solid surface countertop, which will add dollars to your project. The upside, however, is a sleek-looking countertop that makes cleaning up a breeze. Any mess can just be wiped back down into the sink since the rim of the sink is mounted to the underside of the counter.
3. Wall Sink
If the first thought that comes to mind is “school bathroom”—think again. Wall sinks have come a long way from their industrial beginnings and are a fantastic way to add a minimalist design to your bathroom. A wall-mounted vanity with straight lines and sleek hardware exudes modern style and is ideal for small spaces.
If space is an issue, or you’re looking for more traditional sink ideas, a pedestal sink can be the perfect answer. Typically made from porcelain, this option hides plumbing lines and can fit into almost any space. The downside to this choice is a lack of storage—which can be rectified with savvy storage to match the traditional decor. Replacing a large two-sink vanity with two pedestal sinks can create a balanced look and amp up the wow factor in your bathroom.
By far one of the most versatile sink ideas, vessel sinks can come in a variety of colors and materials, making it the perfect choice for those who want to express their unique style. Vessel sinks can sit entirely above the counter, or semi-recessed. When paired with a butcher-block vanity or antique dresser, a vessel sink can add glamour to a traditional or industrial look, while an etched glass countertop can signal a contemporary look.
From bamboo to copper, stone, marble—and even glass, vessel sinks should be chosen based on the type of use and location. While all of the above are ideal for powder rooms, choosing a durable and easy to clean sink will be best for main bathrooms or heavy use. If you live in a location with hard water, a glass vessel may look fantastic upon installation, but can dull quickly with hard water stains.
No matter your style, the right design elements will help you achieve the spa quality you want while adding value to your home. A new sink can be one of the easiest ways to breathe new life into your bathroom and can be done with or without a full bathroom overhaul, making it a worthwhile DIY project for any home.
Before heading to the pool in the backyard, take these steps to ensure your dog’s safety at home.
In the heat of the summer, there are few better ways to cool off than going for a dip at home in the pool. The fun isn’t lost on our four-legged family members, either! But, there can be very serious consequences if both you and your dog aren’t well versed on the proper safety measures needed before you take your first swim. Here are some precautions and general practices to keep in mind to safely enjoy the summer at home in your pool!
The most important safety precaution you can take is making the time to train your dog how to swim. If you aren’t comfortable with taking on such an involved task as this, consult with an experienced dog trainer. You may also want to think about learning how to properly administer CPR to a dog in the event an accident occurs.
A common misconception with dogs is that all breeds are natural and instinctual swimmers. Some breeds – like the Retrievers, Labradors and Setters – love the water; others like Bulldogs and Dachshunds swim as gracefully as a block of cement. And regardless of breed, all dogs have to first be properly taught how to doggy paddle – never throw a weeks old puppy into the water to learn on its own! It is extremely dangerous and can be traumatic.
One of the biggest hurdles to getting your dog in the pool could just be getting her comfortable with the water itself. If your dog seems hesitant, it may be a good idea to use a kiddie pool to introduce the fun in a more relaxing environment.
Some of the most frequent accidents occur when a dog does not see the edge and slips into the pool. That is why it is necessary to make sure your dog is completely comfortable entering and exiting the pool using the steps and will not panic if she slips. Help your dog always identify the stairs by marking the area with a large visible object, such as a plant, to help steer her in the right direction. If your dog is unable to use the steps to your pool, there are doggy ramps that can be purchased to make that transition all the smoother. Making sure your dog takes the steps will also cut down on the damage that the cement edges of a pool can do to claws and paws.
Another concern is the surface that surrounds your pool. The health of your dog’s paws should also be in the back of your mind if she is excitable and runs around the pool for an extended period of time. Many times these surfaces are hot, damaging and can cause serious harm to a dog’s bare paws.
It is loads of fun playing fetch and watching your dog fly through the air, splashing into your pool to retrieve her favorite toy. However, you also should be taking into account the amount of water your dog is drinking while her mouth may be open holding the stick or toy on her way to the stairs to start the game all over again as too much chlorine intake can make your dog sick. At the end of your swimming session, give your dog a rinse with fresh water after she gets out to get rid of the bacteria and chemicals that may be lingering.
If you have a pup that would never be mistaken for Michael Phelps in the water, a doggy life vest is a great way to make sure your dog doesn’t feel left out. Even if your dog seems more fish than canine, a life vest isn’t a bad option in case they develop a cramp or anything else mid-swim.
If your dog will be spending most of their time outside, consider investing in a pool fence to stop an accident from occurring while you are unable to supervise. If you find the idea of a pool fence unsightly, an invisible fence is a great option. When it is time to close the pool for the colder months, be sure that your pool cover does not have any openings and is secured firmly.
The same diligence that one would use when a small child is around a pool is the same kind of attention that should be paid to your dog. The pool is a great way for all dogs – especially older dogs after confirming with a veterinarian your dog is healthy enough – to get exercise. With these various precautionary steps, you can enjoy the backyard pool with the whole family more worry-free!
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Some ideas were surprisingly ahead of their time, while others haven’t exactly aged well.
Interior tastes evolve a bit slower than hairstyles or fashion, but you’d be surprised at how much can change from year to year. The frills of the ’40s, the eclectic ’70s, the pastel explosion of the ’80s — what was hot when you came into this world?
Steal design ideas for the ultimate kids’ space: An Attic Turned Ultimate Kids’ Bedroom Suite
Upgrade your floor with this beautiful design: How to Install a Herringbone Floor
—This Old House master carpenter Norm Abram
Choose your favorite historical house type: American House Styles
But guess what: It’s much better. If the kitchen is total chaos, you can shoo guests out. No one sees me scraping icky plates or filling the dishwasher; they’re too busy chatting to even notice I’m in another room. Smoke, smells, noise, and oil slicks stay in one room, and guest-ready serving dishes arrive in the other. Clearing between courses is like pausing for intermission. Then out comes the next act.”
—Eric Hagerman, special projects editor
Create the most efficient laundry space with our pro tips: Read This Before You Redo Your Laundry Room
—Charlotte Barnard, features editor
Tour these popular and highly decorated porch designs: Victorian-Era Porches
—Maureen Shelly, managing editor
Find ideas for salvaging stained glass: Divining Uses for Stained Glass
—Leslie Monthan, deputy copy chief
Add more charming interior architectural details: Beautify Your Home With Crown Molding and Other Trim Upgrades
—Elizabeth Lilly, associate online editor
Tour a house redo that incorporated functional transoms: Tattered 1920s Bungalow to Updated Gem
—This Old House general contractor Tom Silva
Find the best drying rack for your laundry room: Splurge or Steal: 8 Cool Clothes-Drying Racks
Every so often, I get an inquiry about the strange looking “ferry” in postcards parked on the Tacoma waterfront. Where did it sail, people ask, and what was it doing in Tacoma?
The answer is, it never sailed anywhere. The Top of the Ocean wasn’t even a vessel, but it was a Tacoma landmark three decades.Construction
Built on pilings at 2211 Ruston Way in Tacoma, the “Top” as locals came to call it was was designed by architect Charles Alonzo Kenworthy constructed by Tacoma Boat Mart at a cost of $262,000. It was meant to look like a luxury ocean liner, was a restaurant and banquet facility for clubs, formal parties and other galas. With rooms spread over three decks, the Top of the Ocean could accommodate about 700 people at any given time. On the water side of the establishment, the Top had a floating dock for about 20 visting yachts, and sea plane taxi service was available on weekends.
The establishment opened on 15 December, 1946 and was an immediate hit, but the original owners sold it in 1948 to the Tacoma Athletic Commission. The top deck was converted into their headquarters. Still open to the public, an orchestra provided dance music for patrons Tuesday through Saturday.
The “Top” was sold again in 1951 to University of Puget Sound Athletic Coach Roger W Peck. Over the years there were a number of different owners.
In the early morning hours of Sunday, April 3rd, 1977, the Tacoma fire depart responded to a fire at Herringbone Tucker’s Top of the Ocean Restaurant. By the time the first fire truck arrived, the Top was fully engulfed in flames and a second alarm was raised. Over the next two hours, more than 60 firefighters and a fireboat battled the conflagration before getting it knocked back and under control.
That was arson was not in dispute. Left behind by the arsonist were eight one gallon containers of paint thinner that had been used as an accelerant. Proving that he was no criminal mastermind, the arsonist had thoughtfully left his fingerprints behind for arson investigators.
A thorough examination of the Top of the Ocean revealed the gutted structure had suffered more than a million dollars in damages. The iconic restaurant was deemed unsalvageable, and was scheduled for demolition.
Meanwhile, taxicab driver Richard Black contacted arson investigators about a fare he had taken to the Top of the Ocean parking lot early that Sunday morning. Black had helped him load and unload several gallon cans of paint thinner. The next day, David Willard Levage, 27 was arrested for the crime. Employees at the Top of the Ocean identified him as a patron who had been repeatedly thrown out of the establishment on the Saturday night before the fire for being drunk. Cab drive Black also picked him out of the lineup as the man he’d helped with the paint thinner. Not surprisingly, Levage was also identified by workers at a local hardware store where he purchased—surprise—eight gallons of paint thinner. Charged with first-degree arson, he was released on $10,000.00 bail.
Not surprisingly, Levage was convicted and sentenced to 20 years. What was far more interesting was the real story behind the arson.
Not a Simple Case of Arson
On 8 December, 1978 a federal grand jury in Seattle sent down indictments on local crime boss, John J. Carbone, Pierce County Sheriff George Janovich and David Levage, along with twelve other people for racketeering. Among the indictments was that Levage was Carbone’s hired arsonist. Carbone had been involved in a series of tavern arsons in an attempt to control Pierce County nightlife. The Top of the Ocean had become a victim of that scheme.
The trial was held in US District Court in San Francisco over three months. The defendants were all found guilty on racketeering (except Levage) on 19 June 1979. Carbone actually had his own home torched to throw any suspicion off him—but he ended up convicted of that crime as well. All the men involved were sentenced to lengthy prison terms.
Today, the spot once occupied by the Top of the Ocean is marked with a replica sculpture and a historical marker, giving the colorful history of the unique “ship” that was Tacoma’s top night club and restaurant for over 30 years.