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Rapper Wiz Khalifa Reportedly Drops $3.4M on High-Tech Encino Mansion

Wiz Khalifa

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Rapper Wiz Khalifa just dropped $3.4 million on a top-of-the-line smart home in Encino, CA, according to TMZ.

If the gossip is true, the chart-topping artist decided to make a deal on this brand-new, ultramodern smart home, tucked on just over a quarter-acre of prime property.

The five-bedroom, seven-bathroom home offers an open floor plan across its spacious 5,832 square feet. It has a subdued and sophisticated feel throughout, with luxurious touches, including European white oak floors, a floating staircase, custom lacquer cabinetry, floor-to-ceiling glass pocket doors, and 24-foot ceilings.

Upscale amenities include a 100-bottle wine bar, home theater, pool, spa, as well as a cabana with full bathroom and outdoor kitchen. Upstairs, there’s an open-air lounge with outdoor terrace and wraparound balcony, which sounds like the perfect spot for Khalifa to kick back and indulge in his much-boasted about $10,000-a month marijuana habit.

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Watch: Miami Residents Blame Pitbull for Neighborhood Eyesore

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The property also comes with high-tech smart home features like a built-in alarm, four exterior cameras, a sound system, and a three-zone Nest HVAC.

Exterior

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Foyer

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Living

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Kitchen

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Master bedroom

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Outdoor living area

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Pool

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Last summer, Khalifa gave Architectural Digest a tour of the Los Angeles home he was renting for $16,000 a month. The rental pad was where he and his son, Sebastian, spent time together. It was a comfortable, kid-friendly place filled with art and personal memorabilia, rather than the champagne-soaked party pad one might expect of a major hip-hop star.

“I don’t bring people to my house,” he told the magazine. He went on to explain the thing he liked best about the home was its proximity to Sebastian’s school, the gym, and his work.

Now that he’s decided to buy something of his own, Khalifa’s new home looks as if it, too, will be a sweet retreat, with all the privacy and calm a dad and his son could ever ask for.

The post Rapper Wiz Khalifa Reportedly Drops $3.4M on High-Tech Encino Mansion appeared first on Real Estate News & Insights | realtor.com®.

Our First Home Had No Heat: A Chilling Tale and What We Learned

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Everyone has a story to tell about their first apartment. Mine was charming, cheap, and in a great location. The problem? It didn’t have heat.

It was January 2003. I was 22 and had just started graduate school in Little Rock, AR, and the apartment’s rent was only $475, which was even cheap for Little Rock at the time. My husband and I wanted to be in the historic and artsy Hillcrest neighborhood, where could walk to coffee shops, and felt lucky to snag such a find. The apartment was spacious, with a large open living room, and had tons of windows that let in natural light.

Plus, in Little Rock, winters were fairly mild … so even if the temperatures did drop below freezing, as they did on occasion, we figured we’d do just fine. Right?

What I learned living without heat

For starters, to say that the apartment didn’t have heat is not entirely accurate. Technically, it did have a single, ancient gas space heater in the living room. However, this didn’t even heat the room it was in, let alone the whole apartment. The heater also didn’t have a grate, so switching it on ignited a big open flame. It was akin to having an open fire pit inside our home, one that smelled worryingly of a gas leak.

Since it was the first time my husband and I had lived without central heat, we were frankly afraid of that old gas heater. It seemed so unsafe, we decided we’d rather suffer without heat than turn it on and risk being asphyxiated by gas or burnt to death in our sleep.

To stay warm in the drafty apartment, we bundled up in coats, sweaters, and gloves while we watched TV or studied—or spent extra time hanging out at coffee shops or anywhere else that was heated. We took extra blankets from our parents, and my in-laws gave us an electric blanket for Christmas that first year. Our parents thought we were crazy for living this way and urged us to move, but we didn’t want to spend the extra money to rent a more modernized place.

Some days, it was so cold inside, we could see our breath. We drank lots of hot cups of tea and used the oven to cook as much as we could so we could hang out in the warm kitchen. I looked forward to taking a hot shower every morning to warm up.

After two years in that apartment, I came to dread the winter months. Nonetheless, this experience of living without some of the comforts I was used to taught me some important lessons.

Examine the space carefully

Looking back, I now realize that my husband and I were so excited about moving into our first apartment and finding something affordable that this clouded our judgment. We should have asked more questions, turned on light switches and taps—and, of course, tested out the heat and air conditioning to see how it worked. We should have noted any needed repairs and discussed them with the landlord before signing the lease.

Know your rights as a renter

I remember talking to our landlord about the heater that we considered unsafe, but only after we moved in. He wasn’t sympathetic, saying that we had signed the lease knowing that the apartment had only a space heater. He assured us it was safe and worked well, and that it was our choice not to use it.

We didn’t really push the issue with him, probably because we were young and inexperienced with dealing with landlords, and didn’t know that we could.

Quality really does matter

The age-old saying “You get what you pay for” definitely rings true for our first apartment experience. Because we didn’t have central heat and air and never used the heater, our utility bills were very cheap—plus, the rent was only $475. Not spending so much on living expenses meant we had more money for going out to eat or doing other fun stuff, which was more attractive to us at the time.

Living there made me better realize the value of quality. I still love old spaces that are full of character, but they aren’t always practical investments for renting or buying, especially if they aren’t kept in good repair. For our first apartment, we could have afforded to spend a bit more for somewhere nicer, and maybe we should have.

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Watch: Ned & Ariel’s Home Journey Episode 1: Dream House

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Know when it’s time to move on

After about two years of living without heat, we decided it was time to move. We didn’t want to spend another winter living in the cold, and by that time, I had finished grad school and was working as a copy editor and writing teacher, so we could afford to spend a little more on rent.

We chose to rent another apartment a few blocks away, and the first thing we looked at was the heat and air conditioning systems. This place actually didn’t have central heat and air, either, and also had a gas space heater. But, the heater was more modern, had a grate, didn’t smell as if it had a gas leak and did a decent job heating the space. We were sure to test it before we agreed to rent the place. We also read our lease very carefully and discussed how repairs would be handled with our landlord before signing.

Fifteen years later, we purchased our first home—and that’s when our hard-won experiences in that cold apartment really paid off. How? I realized I’d have to be more assertive dealing with building contractors, real estate agents, and others. I also hadn’t thought much about home systems, like heat and air, so I learned that details matter.

My husband and I might win the prize for the dumpiest (or coldest) first apartment, but, I honestly wouldn’t go back and change anything. When I think back to that place, I harbor mostly fond memories of our first home—no heat and all.

The post Our First Home Had No Heat: A Chilling Tale and What We Learned appeared first on Real Estate News & Insights | realtor.com®.

Eerie Underground House in Vegas Emerges as the Week’s Most Popular Home

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You’ll dig this place! The unbelievable Underground House in Las Vegas soared to the top of this week’s most popular homes on realtor.com®. The bunker 26 feet below the earth’s surface is a strange simulacrum of a suburban house with a pool, fake trees, and even a barbecue. If the “Brady Bunch” had built a bunker, this would be it.

This week’s runner-up is a huge mansion in the small state of New Hampshire. The Mill House features Old World details mixed with contemporary luxury, as well as a six-hole putting green.

Other above-par abodes you clicked on this week include the Beverly Hills home of “Real Housewives” star Dorit Kemsley, the former Detroit home of rock star Jack White, and an affordable, cute Chicago bungalow.

For a full look at this week’s most popular homes, simply scroll on down…

10. 6445 E Division Rd, Mill Creek, IN 

Price: $3,450,000
Why it’s here: If you love Victorian style but don’t want to hassle with restoration, we’ve found just the spot. Built in 2000, this enormous 14,000-square foot mansion on 80 acres of rolling countryside includes eight ensuite bedrooms, nine fireplaces, and two grand staircases. Decks and turrets offer views that extend for miles, and the gated grounds feature a stocked pond.

Mill Creek, IN

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9. 1404 Dawnridge Dr, Beverly Hills, CA

Price: $7,995,000
Why it’s here: “Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” star Dorit Kemsley and her husband, P.K., have relisted their home—at a discount! The couple initially put the Mediterranean contemporary on the market for $12.75 million. With no takers for the mansion, they tried a price chop last year to $8.25 million but didn’t land a buyer. This relisted price may do the trick. The luxury estate offers indoor-outdoor living, formal living and dining rooms, a dining room, wine cellar, and home theater. 

Beverly Hills, CA

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8. 1735 Lanyard Ln, Fort Wayne, IN

Price: $229,000
Why it’s here: Built in 1965, this cute four-bedroom has had a gut renovation. For nature lovers, it backs up to a creek and nature preserves. It also features a finished basement, screened porch, remodeled baths, new kitchen with quartz counters, and new flooring. Along with a garage, there’s a shed for even more storage.

Fort Wayne, IN

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7. 1647 Wagar Ave, Lakewood, OH

Price: $329,900
Why it’s here: This updated Colonial is within walking distance of shops, schools, parks, and entertainment. The open plan features a gourmet kitchen, living room with fireplace, formal dining room, and a family room that opens to a deck. It comes with new windows, fresh paint, refinished wood flooring, and refreshed bathrooms.

Lakewood, OH

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6.1731 Seminole St, Detroit, MI

Price: $1,114,000
Why it’s here: The former home of rocker Jack White is back on the market. The quaint crib with the funky decor was available last August for $1.2 million. Now it’s back with a slight discount. The White Stripes frontman owned the pad from 2003 to 2007, before selling it to the current owners for $590,000.

Detroit, MI

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5. 609 S Bois D Arc Ave, Tyler, TX

Price: $249,900
Why it’s here: This historic gem from 1942 has gone through a renovation that includes new fixtures, paint, and hardwood floors. It has a large dining room, indoor patio, three bedrooms, a balcony, as well as a patio and pool outside.

Tyler, TX

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4. 24100 Hidden Ridge Rd, Hidden Hills, CA 

Price: $12,995,000
Why it’s here: This deluxe home in the guard-gated and celeb-filled enclave is stuffed with upscale amenities including a chef’s kitchen, home theater, bar and game room, two walk-in closets, and an exercise room.

Hidden Hills, CA

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3. 2549 W Fargo Ave, Chicago, IL

Price: $365,000
Why it’s here: This freshly redone three-bedroom bungalow from 1923 is ready for move-in. The main level offers a spacious kitchen with quartz counters, living room, and separate dining room. The lower level features a finished family room, with laundry, storage, and a reading nook with built-ins.

Chicago, IL

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2. 6 Anderson Rd, Windham, NH 

Price: $3,500,000
Why it’s here: Behold the Mill House, a cool combination of Old World details and contemporary updates. The 11,000-square-foot estate on 14 acres caught the attention of the web, which added grist to this Mill, with many, many clicks. Details of the property include the main house, a carriage house for guests, a workshop, and a clubhouse for entertaining. 

Classic features such as exposed brick and tin ceilings in the kitchen give way to large formal spaces. The sprawling grounds include a six-hole putting green. 

The master suite features a balcony overlooking a waterfall, and the home also includes a library, six fireplaces, wide-plank floors, outdoor lounging spaces, and its own turbine to generate electricity. 

Windham, NH

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1. 3970 Spencer St, Las Vegas, NV

Price: $18,000,000
Why it’s here: Who says you can’t have fun on doomsday?

The Underground House is a bunker built to “withstand cataclysmic events in comfort.” Its unique appeal attracted huge amounts of interest, which propelled the secret dwelling into the top spot.

The subterranean structure includes almost 15,000 square feet of space and amenities, two miles away from the Las Vegas Strip and deep below the earth. The underground living includes a 2,300-square-foot house, a yard with pool, hot tubs, a putting green, a dance floor, a bar, fake trees, a guesthouse, and fountain. Murals of city and mountain views surround the bunker, along with lighting that simulates day, dusk, and dawn.

The home was built in the 1970s by entrepreneur Jerry Henderson and his wife, Mary. Henderson was a pioneer of underground living, sponsoring an exhibit at the New York World’s Fair in 1964. He died in 1983, and the decor of this place appears to be unchanged since them.

The house was purchased in 2014 for $1,150,000 by the Society for the Preservation of Near Extinct Species, a secretive group with the goal of helping humans live forever. The mysterious organization used the home to hold meetings, according to listing agent Stephan M-LaForge. 

The home cost $10 million to build and is encapsulated inside a steel box 26 feet underground. “It’s underground living. Instead of living in a concrete box, they made it look like a house with a landscape,” M-LaForge says. The bunker includes about a mile of steel beams that secure it. 

Above ground is a home that accesses the underground dwelling and comes with an elevator and three sets of stairs. While M-LaForge isn’t sure anyone has actually lived in the bunker, it’s certainly possible, thanks to a generator and 1,000 gallons of water stored down there. And, you could live in style, with an electric barbecue that vents through a hollow faux tree. Above ground, the cement tree in the yard is a chimney. “It’s unique. It’s completely original. It’s supercool,” M-LaForge says. 

Las Vegas, NV

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The post Eerie Underground House in Vegas Emerges as the Week’s Most Popular Home appeared first on Real Estate News & Insights | realtor.com®.

‘Opus’ Returns for Another Recital as the Week’s Most Expensive Home

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There’s a new movement for the megamansion dubbed Opus. The deluxe Beverly Hills property, originally asking $100 million, and then chopped to $85 million in 2017, is being newly offered for $68 million.

“There’s a major deal here,” says new listing agent Rayni Williams. 

She notes that the posh area known as Billionaires’ Row also includes the nearby Minecraft mansion, which sold for $70 million in 2014. “Opus is the same size, with the same view. We’re beneath that price,” Williams says.

Even though it’s a “deal,” the mansion is still the most expensive new listing this week on realtor.com®. For discriminating luxury buyers, the lower price point will be worth singing about.

Opus estate is back on the market.

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Expansive indoor and outdoor space with two pools

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Living room with views of the city

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Formal dining room

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Bar area

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Wellness center with indoor pool, plunge pools, and gym

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Williams told us the 20,000-square-foot space has received a recent makeover, including completely new wide-plank oak flooring (in a “golden” shade) and texturized walls on both levels, including the beauty and wellness areas.

“The neutral palette gives it a softer look,” according to the agent.

There are still numerous eye-popping perks, including a Champagne cellar stocked with Cristal, a downstairs wine room with space for 7,000 bottles, as well as a dining table that seats 12 for tastings.

The fully furnished contemporary with unobstructed views of the city features seven bedrooms, seven full bathrooms, and four half-baths on a little over an acre. Designed by architect Paul McClean, the spread also includes two pools, two kitchens, an oversized theater, a billiards room, and a car museum.

The high-end home, which sits in a cul-de-sac, is adjacent to some high-profile properties, like the Elvis Presley estate across the street, and the Danny Thomas estate two homes over, which sold in 2017 for a (heavily discounted) $65 million. Maybe this new price is the new sweet spot. 

The upscale mansion, with its signature “O” sculpture out front, has seen its price cut by a third, but stands by its Opus moniker. “The street speaks for itself. The house doesn’t even need a name. There aren’t many lots that are like this,” Williams says.

The post ‘Opus’ Returns for Another Recital as the Week’s Most Expensive Home appeared first on Real Estate News & Insights | realtor.com®.

America’s Most Dangerous Tools: Don’t Get Maimed in the Name of Home Improvement

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As a homeowner or renter, it feels great to handle a home improvement project with your own two hands. From hanging pictures to cleaning the gutters, being able to accomplish these tasks and save money is a real boon. But as the pros know, you risk injury even when doing the simplest DIY projects.

A recent report from home-improvement site Porch reveals how DIYers most commonly injure themselves—and the tools most frequently responsible for those injuries. Researchers analyzed data from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System, which collects statistics on injuries associated with consumer products from U.S. hospital emergency departments across the country. From that, they were able to see the home improvement tools responsible for the most injuries, thereby giving us the list of the most dangerous tools in America.

And as alarming as it may sound, it’s highly likely you have at least one of these tools in your home right now. Below, a breakdown of these injurious implements, how likely you are to get hurt if you use them, and helpful tips to use them safely.

Most dangerous tool: the ladder

We weren’t surprised to find that ladders top the list of most dangerous tools, with an estimated 193,815 injuries per year treated in hospital emergency rooms. Ladders are used in a wide variety of home improvement projects … although they seem rather simple to use.

However, J.B. Sassano, president of home-repair franchise Mr. Handyman, says there are plenty of opportunities for ladder mishaps—like if the ladder is not placed on firm, level ground.

A ladder that’s too short or simply placed too far from what’s needed can force the person using to overreach and lose their balance.

“And some people use the top rung as a step—but you should never step on the top,” Sassano warns.

So what are your chances to going to the ER as the result of a ladder-related injury? The data says it’s about 1 in 1,680. And the parts of your body that are most likely to suffer harm from a ladder fall? Your head, torso, lower arms, and lower legs.

most dangerous tools
The estimated number of injuries by type of tool.

Porch

Other dangerous tools

Rounding out the top of the list of hazardous home improvement tools are hardware (which includes nails, screws, and tacks) with 124,558 estimated injuries; lawn mowers with 89,608 estimated injuries; power saws with 81,240 estimated injuries; and cleaning equipment with 57,297 estimated injuries.

Although the odds of an emergency room visit decrease the further you get down the list, some of these injuries—like power saw injuries—tend to be more serious than others.

“It’s not a call that we respond to very often, but the most gruesome tool accidents we see are from chainsaws. For example, someone is cutting down a tree and they end up cutting off or seriously injuring a hand, arm, leg, or foot,” says Battalion Chief Raymond Williams of the Birmingham Fire Department in Birmingham, AL.

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Watch: DIY Don’ts: 5 of the Worst Mistakes Homeowners Can Make

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In addition to injuring your limbs, Sassano says power tools can also be dangerous to your eyes and lungs: “Sawdust can spray quite far and if you’re not wearing safety goggles and a mask, you’re in trouble.”

The likelihood that a power saw or chain saw will send you to the ER is about 1 in 4,009 and 1 in 10,550, respectively.

most dangerous tools
The odds that a certain tool will send you to the ER.

Porch

When are you likely to get injured?

Homeowners can be injured by tools at any time, but incidents peak during the summer months, with the most tool-related ER visits  occurring in June (an estimated 136,100 visits) and July (an estimated 137,400 visits).

Injuries are down the most in January, with an estimated 79,800 ER visits.

When we look at the number of DIY tool-related injuries by each day of the week, it probably comes as no surprise that most injuries happen on Saturdays.

“One would expect the weekend to hold the highest number of injuries, which Saturday does, but Monday was the day with the next highest amount,” says Amanda Woolley, a spokesperson at Porch. Perhaps this is because several national holidays (like Labor Day and Memorial Day) are on Monday.

Exercising tool safety

The best way to keep yourself out of harm’s way when working with DIY tools is to use them the way they were intended to be used. If you don’t understand the proper operation, postpone your project until you do, or hire a professional.

Regarding ladders, Sassano warns against using anything taller than a step ladder if you don’t have experience or confidence.

“If you are a novice, afraid of heights, or do not own a ladder tall enough to safely clean your gutters, upper story windows, or check for roof damage, leave it to the professionals,” he says.

The post America’s Most Dangerous Tools: Don’t Get Maimed in the Name of Home Improvement appeared first on Real Estate News & Insights | realtor.com®.

‘Piece of Art’: Distinctive $2.8M Midcentury Modern Time Capsule in SoCal

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This awe-inspiring midcentury modern time capsule in La Verne, CA, was built by prominent architect Foster Rhodes Jackson, a student of Frank Lloyd Wright.

Now you can unearth all its scintillating secrets, because it’s currently on the market for $2.8 million.

It’s easy to spot the home’s distinctive features as soon as you pull up to the house. Many of the walls are made of stone embedded in cement, and they vary in width and shape. Benches, steps, mosaics, and planters are built into the walls.

When you cross the parklike, 1.34-acre grounds and venture up to the house, you’ll notice the gorgeous stained and leaded glass widows. They were made by the noted local glass artist Mike Hill, who also created a few of the light fixtures and exquisite glass panels inside the home.

Walls of concrete and inlaid stone

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Leaded glass windows and concrete and stone walls

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Stained-glass light fixtures

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And once you step through the front door, you’ll also see woodwork by noted craftsman Sam Maloof. He crafted unique wall and ceiling paneling and built-ins throughout, and his spiral staircase is a true work of art.

The geometric screens in the home will leave any mid-mod design lover swooning.

Wood staircase created by master craftsman Sam Maloof

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Sam Maloof paneling

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Sam Maloof screen

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Listing agent Sarah Barron of Barron Real Estate told us that the home was built in 1963 for prominent Los Angeles-area attorney Herbert Hafif. The similarly designed Hafif Family Foundation compound—where concerts and cultural gatherings take place—is right across the road. Hafif assembled a team of the best craftsmen in the area for this one-of-a-kind house.

Although the listing notes that there are six bedrooms and 6.5 baths, Barron told us, “the house is essentially five suites, and every one has a spa.”

There’s even a spa off the dining room. Barron notes the many water and fire features throughout the house, with fireplaces in the bedroom suites, several of which have kitchenettes.

Bedroom suite with fireplace and kitchenette

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Spa off the dining room

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“There are so many interesting features,” says Barron, noting the unique cork paneling on some of the walls, the “ingenious skylights,” and private atriums. The agent also highlighted the floor-to-ceiling windows and glass sliding doors, which provide views of the hills from almost every part of the home.

Cork paneling

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One of many “ingenious skylights”

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There are numerous built-in furniture pieces, including sofas, bed platforms, night tables, bookshelves, desks, lighted vanities, and cedar closets. The level of craftsmanship throughout is jaw-dropping.

Built-in furniture

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Master bedroom with leaded glass windows, fireplace, and built-in bed platform.

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Barron admits that the 7,000-square foot house “could use a little work.” She believes (and hopes!) a buyer will be a person who appreciates the artistry of the home and will restore it to its full glory.

“It’s a beautiful piece of art created in the years when a unique movement fostered collaborations between artists and designers,” she says, “This caliber of property is rarely available, and you just won’t find it anywhere else.”

The post ‘Piece of Art’: Distinctive $2.8M Midcentury Modern Time Capsule in SoCal appeared first on Real Estate News & Insights | realtor.com®.

Meghan Markle Is Decorating Her Nursery With What?! A Sneak Peek

Anthony Devlin – WPA Pool /Getty Images

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle‘s baby isn’t even here yet, but the royal tot is already shaking things up, based on what the mom-to-be is adding to the nursery.

It’s all part of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s larger plans to renovate their new home, Frogmore Cottage, a building on the grounds of Windsor Castle, outside London,and roughly under an hour’s drive from Kensington Palace. Meghan is slated to give birth this spring, so they’d better hurry up! And it turns out plenty of news has already leaked on how the nursery will look. Here’s what we’ve heard she’s including so far.

Vegan paint

Elle reports that baby Sussex will be treated to a nursery decked out in vegan paint. Um, raise your hand if you knew that paint contains animal byproducts. Anyone? Anyone? Well, for those concerned about the health effects of paints with volatile organic compounds (VOCs), the most popular alternative is paint made with casein, a milk protein. But that won’t do for Meghan, an ardent vegan.

That’s why she’s reportedly using the British paint manufacturers The Organic & Natural Paint Company, which produces three different types of vegan paint that do not contain this offending ingredient.

Built-in aromatherapy

Meghan’s paint pick is not only vegan, it’s infused with eucalyptus and rosemary oils. These don’t just smell nice—they are also said to enhance the immune system. Who knows if that’s true, but it’s understandable that Meghan would do whatever she can to keep this infant from catching the sniffles.

A neutral color scheme

As for what color paint, royal correspondent Katie Nicholl told “Entertainment Tonight,” “Don’t expect to see any baby pink or baby blue. Apparently, it’s going to be a monochrome palette—whites and grays, I’m told, will be the color theme for baby Sussex’s nursery.”

One possible reason for this neutral color scheme is that, according to Nicholl, the couple have decided not to find out the sex of the baby in advance. Or maybe they just hate the idea of using pink or blue or any overly vivid hues just because it’s the baby’s room. Who said babies can’t like gray, too?

In any case, if you’re tempted to borrow from Meghan’s nursery plan and try vegan paint, you’re in luck! Organic & Natural Paint Company ships overseas, and a gallon of their natural wood paint is about $34.50. If you’d prefer to stick to dealers closer to home, Vegan Design even offers “eco-friendly” vegan paint for $45 per gallon.

The post Meghan Markle Is Decorating Her Nursery With What?! A Sneak Peek appeared first on Real Estate News & Insights | realtor.com®.

14 Funny Word Art Signs You’ll Actually Be Glad to Have at Home

Sick of word art? You know, those signs saying “Eat” or “Bless This Mess”? We are, too—which is all the more reason to embrace a whole new crop of signs that have dispensed with such earnest pleas and emphasize a sense of humor instead.

If you’re longing to inject some much-needed silliness into your home, check out these refreshingly irreverent word art options below.

1.  For when you’re not in the mood for company

make yourself at home sign
For when you’re just not in the mood for guests

Etsy

You always want to be a giving, gracious host, but sometimes you may not be in the mood for company. This sign (Etsy, $13) says exactly what you’re thinking, but probably would never have the nerve to say.

2. For when you have a no-shoes home

shoes sign
For those who insist on no shoes in the house, no matter what

Etsy

There’s something so uncomfortable about taking your shoes off in a home you’ve never visited before. And even knowing that, you’re still going to ask your guests to remove their shoes, so you might as well have some fun with it. Just point to this sign (Etsy, $35) and move on.

3. For when you need a reminder to be nice

dont be a turd
For when you need a reminder to up your game

Etsy

Being a nice person should come naturally, but there are some days when we all need a reminder. For those days, there is this sign (Etsy, $22). Hang it where those who need it most will see it.

4. For the martyr in the house

exhausted sign
For when you’re the one who does all the work

Tessa Mea Designs

If you feel you’re the only person in the house who ever gets anything done, hang this sign (Tessa Mea Designs, $30) and let it say what you’re always thinking. Maybe they’ll even get the hint (but probably not).

5. For when you’re ready for a good day

today I will be happy
For people with an optimistic outlook

Daisy Trading

Have you ever seen a bird with a french fry? Pure joy. You’re sending positive vibes out into the world, and just as this sign (Daisy Trading, $33) says, you’re going to be that happy.

6. For when every night is pizza night

pizza night
For those who prefer not to cook

Etsy

At first glance, this dining room sign looks as if it’s quoting the Bible, but it’s actually a reference to the greatest food ever invented. If your family likes pizza—and we know they do—you’re going to want to order this sign (Etsy, $14) ASAP.

7. For when you’ve got (bad) jokes

eye roll
For cringeworthy punsters

Etsy

If your jokes are always making eyes roll, then this sign (Etsy, $7) should have a place of honor on your home.

8. For when you like to shake it while you bake it

shake it kitchen
For when you need to liven up your kitchen

Etsy

Suddenly, all those nostalgic songs that make you shake your groove thang also have a perfect spot in your kitchen with these cleverly designed signs. Pick up this set of eight (Etsy, $56) and show all your guests that you’re so much more than a fabulous chef.

9. For when the sink is full again

dirty dishes sign
For when the sink is full again

dirty dishes sign

If your sink is endlessly full of dirty dishes, you know you can’t get away from them. At least you can have a little bit of fun with it (Etsy, $20).

10. For when you love a good veggie pun

turnip the beet
For when you need a good veggie pun

This funny sign (Amazon, $12) fits right in with any classy kitchen decor, but it’s actually a fun veggie pun that’ll make all your house guests giggle.

11. For when you wish Alexa could chip in a little more

alexa laundry
For when Alexa is a slacker

Etsy

Yes, it’s nice that Alexa can lock your doors and turn on your favorite soft jazz music, but wouldn’t it be great if she could chip in where it really matters (Etsy, $25)? Like maybe with the chores?

12. For when you’re bored in the bathroom

forgot phone
For when you need to pass the time in the bathroom

Etsy

What did we do in the bathroom before we had phones? If you forget yours, you don’t have to resort to reading the back of the air freshener can—you can have this handy bathroom-themed word search at the ready for phoneless disasters with this fun sign (Etsy, $30).

13. For when people need a reminder

wash your hands
For when someone doesn’t wash their hands

Amazon

This pretty sign (Amazon, $13) is all flowers and gorgeous blues … but it’s also a not-so-subtle reminder that people should wash their hands. Because someone in your house probably doesn’t.

14. For when you need a little bathroom humor

bathroom humor
For fans of bathroom humor

Etsy

Bathroom humor gets a bad rep, but it has its place… and that place is definitely your bathroom! These signs (Etsy, $10 each) won’t fail to elicit chuckles from your family or your guests, so get the whole collection and hang them in your most-used powder room.

The post 14 Funny Word Art Signs You’ll Actually Be Glad to Have at Home appeared first on Real Estate News & Insights | realtor.com®.

Mortgage Rates Aren’t Moving—How Will the Housing Market Respond?

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Rates for home loans were unchanged in line with a stagnating bond market, but big questions remain about the health of the housing market.

The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.45% in the January 24 week, mortgage guarantor Freddie Mac said Thursday. It was the third-straight week in which the popular product stayed at that level. The 15-year adjustable-rate mortgage was also unchanged at 3.88%. The 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage averaged 3.90%, up 3 basis points.

Those rates don’t include fees associated with obtaining mortgage loans.

Fixed-rate mortgages track the 10-year U.S. Treasury note, which has bounced in a narrow range in the past few weeks, buffeted by concerns about slowing global economies.

Last month’s pace of existing-home sales was the worst since November 2015, a time when the economic recovery was just gathering steam, and the mortgage industry faced a fresh round of new regulations that delayed closings. Here’s what MarketWatch had to say about the sales situation back then:

November’s pace was the slowest in 19 months and marked what NAR called a “statistical anomaly” rarely seen except during periods when tax credits expire. The last time sales fell so sharply was July 2010.

Back then, the culprit was easy to spot. The rule, popularly known as “Know Before You Owe,” was an important part of the post-crisis Dodd-Frank reforms intended to protect consumers seeking mortgages. But many real-estate agents found it as unwieldy as its title: TILA-RESPA Integrated Disclosure (TILA for “Truth in Lending” and RESPA for “Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act”), all shortened to “TRID.” Many agents who saw closings delayed joked that the acronym should have been “The Reason I Drink.” Others had more, let’s say, colorful, names for it.

Andrea Riquier tweetBut late 2018’s big drop isn’t so clear-cut. “Unfortunately, I don’t think we can write this off as a weather-related fluke,” said Amherst Pierpont Securities’ Stephen Stanley, without really pinpointing what was to blame.

Most analysts responding to the December decline suspected it came down to mortgage rates, and pointed to a recent surge in home loan applications as rates dropped, which MarketWatch detailed last week.

As previously reported, higher rates in and of themselves probably aren’t enough to quell demand. It’s more likely that some combination of rising rates, sturdy home price gains, a shaky political landscape and uncertain personal tax situations, along with the perennial problem of not enough houses to buy in the price categories where they’re needed, are the primary factors.

The question is whether the housing market can overcome most or all of those headwinds in the busy spring season.

The post Mortgage Rates Aren’t Moving—How Will the Housing Market Respond? appeared first on Real Estate News & Insights | realtor.com®.

Recently Retired Texas Ranger Adrian Beltre Selling $3.3M Dallas Mansion

Adrian Beltre

Rick Yeatts/Getty Images

Future Hall of Fame third baseman Adrián Beltré is selling his ornate French-inspired mansion in Dallas, TX, for $3.38 million. The listing comes just months after the popular player announced his retirement from baseball.

The home is a winner—just like its famous owner. The over-8,000-square-foot gated mansion features intricately carved wood paneling and hand-scraped hardwood floors. Built in 2008 and sitting on a meticulously manicured three-quarters of an acre lot, the home is formal and traditional. There’s a distinct French chateau flair across its roomy five bedrooms, five full bathrooms, and two half-bathrooms.

According to the listing details, the property’s layout was carefully considered to create a space tailor-made for both family living and entertaining in high style. The kitchen has double sinks and a double oven, as well as a six-burner gas stove and grill. A breathtaking formal study includes a wet bar and adjacent wine cellar. The home also includes a comfy eight-seat home theater, large game room with kitchenette, a home workout space, and a craft room.

Outdoors, the covered living area—complete with video screens—offers a relaxing space with lovely views of the yard, pool, and spa.

Exterior

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Living

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Study

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Kitchen

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Master bedroom

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Master bathroom

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Home theater

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Outdoor living

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Pool

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Widely expected to be a lock for the Baseball Hall of Fame, thanks in part to his record-setting 3,000 career hits and 400 home runs, Beltré has also made a name for himself in the Dallas-Fort Worth area for being an all-around great guy.

“Adrián is one of the best people I’ve had the opportunity to work with. He stands out as much off the field as he does on it,” said Rangers general manager Jon Daniels when Beltré announced his departure from the major leagues after 21 seasons. “He is a Hall of Fame-level teammate, husband, and father. He helped raise the Rangers’ franchise to a new level.”

Beltré and his wife, Sandra, are the parents of three kids, Cassie, AJ, and Camila.

Judging by the listing photos, the home is empty and ready for a new owner to move in. As for the Beltré family, there’s no word whether they are planning to stay in the Lone Star State or move elsewhere. Regardless, the third baseman has left his mark on the city, and this house offers an opportunity to live like a true legend.

The post Recently Retired Texas Ranger Adrian Beltre Selling $3.3M Dallas Mansion appeared first on Real Estate News & Insights | realtor.com®.