Atlanta Homes Guru Blog

Over the last few decades the share of older homeowners (age 62 and older) with mortgage debt has doubled, while the typical amount of outstanding debt relative to home values among this group has tripled.

 

Older homeowners still paying off mortgage debt face high rates of housing cost burdens (paying more than 30 percent of income for housing), leaving less income for other necessities. In addition, homeowners with higher mortgage debt have less housing equity to tap for critical needs and face the ongoing risk of foreclosure.

For these reasons, higher levels of mortgage debt may be expected to create lower levels of financial well-being among these individuals. Using both descriptive and multivariate approaches, this paper explores two issues

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In my profession, I’ve seen many people fail in their renovations simply because they ran out of time and money. It’s heartbreaking — and so easy to avoid. Most people don’t realize that the majority of their success relies on their ability to plan well at the start. Here are my top tips for keeping your budget on track throughout your renovation.

 

Break It Down

Whether you’re renovating for profit or pleasure, it’s very easy to underestimate the costs involved. If your budget blows out, you’re not going to be able to afford those finishing touches that can be so important to the end product.

During the planning phase, break down your budget in detail — this way you’ll be less likely to exceed it during construction. It will also allow you to be

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Whiten Piano KeysMONGKOL FOTO/SHUTTERSTOCK

Whiten Piano Keys

Piano keys can get discolored over time and through use. Get them to sing a different tune by cleaning them with toothpaste.

 

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FAMILY HANDYMAN

Garden Sprayer Cleans Hard-to-Reach Spots

A garden sprayer can be a mini power washer for cleaning windowsills and other hard-to-reach spots. Before you fill the tank with water, be sure to rinse it repeatedly to flush out any chemical residue.

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Clear Up Coffee Rings

Your guests should’ve used a coaster but now you have a coffee stain on your table. A little dab of toothpaste can get that stain out, just like coffee stains on your teeth.

See how to remove stains in wood

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Downsizing is a big step for a lot of seniors and, for many, it can be a hard change to make. To help make the transition easier, I asked real estate agents to share their best tips for how to handle this process. Read on below to see what they had to say.

Take an inventory of your current space

“My top tip for clients looking to downsize is not only take inventory of your home and the items you want to keep, but to also take an inventory of the space you actually use.

For example, if you have a formal dining area but never use it, or perhaps have multiple spare bedrooms that don't see guests, then you can remove these items from your search in your next home—even if it means letting go of a special piece of furniture.”

Danielle M.

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Security researchers discovered a vulnerability in the Philips Hue smart bulbs that may allow hackers to infiltrate a home’s network.

Cybersecurity firm Check Point revealed the exploit through a blog post, where it detailed the method of attack that hackers may use to take advantage of the bug.

The first step in the hack, which is made possible by a remote exploit in the ZigBee low-power wireless protocol that is used on many smart home devices, is for the hacker to take control of one Philips Hue smart bulbs. By adjusting the bulb’s color and brightness, the victim will be tricked into thinking that it is glitching out.

The smart bulb will appear as “unreachable” in the Philips Hue control app, so the victim will likely try to reset it by

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Whether you're moving to a new neighborhood or curious about how safe your current area is, there are some great online tools available to help you research your neighborhood's safety level.

But remember, being safe includes more than just awareness. These tools can also help you take action by alerting you to new safety issues and allowing you to quickly share concerns with your neighbors. From safety overviews to monitoring to simply being a good neighbor, these online safety tools have got you covered.

Our Top 5 Online Neighborhood Safety Tools

(according to the safety team of www.safety.com)

1. CrimeReports

This map-based site shows you up-to-date data on crimes that have recently occurred in your area. It’s as simple

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Thinking of moving soon? Whether you’re sick of your job or sick of your neighbors, there are plenty of reasons why it could be time for a change. Here are 11 common signs that it’s high time to move.

#1 Things are getting tight

Look around. Are things getting a bit tight in your household? If so, it may be time to move. One of the most obvious tell-tale signs that it’s time to move is when you no longer have room for anything. Maybe you had a baby. Maybe an aging parent is moving in with you. Maybe you need an extra guest room. Or maybe you just can’t turn around without tripping over all your stuff. Whatever the reason – when space is tight, you know it’s time to move to a bigger place.

#2 You’re ready for an upgrade

If you’re ready to

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With technology continuously evolving and improving, home security systems today offer a wide range of protection and coverage options. Modern systems have features ranging from in-home motion and heat sensors to video doorbells and more, as well as apps and smart home integration that lets you monitor your home from any location.

If you’re in the market for a home security system, here are seven different security systems to consider, from automated and professionally-installed systems, to no-contract, self-monitored options.

Important Things To Know About Home Security Systems:

  • Home security systems can range from basic with just door sensors, to comprehensive with fire and smoke sensors, glass sensors, and much more.
  • Many home
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Give your home a curb appeal makeover and get your neighbors thinking someone else moved in.

Man-examines-a-cracked-and-crumbling-asphalt-driveway

FAMILY HANDYMAN

1. Repave a Driveway: Before

A well-maintained driveway keeps the front of your home looking good and is one of he first things guests and neighbors notice about your home. Weather beat on this driveway to the point that it deteriorated and needs repaving.

FAMILY HANDYMAN

2. Repave a Driveway: After

Repaving your driveway is going to take the better part of a weekend but the good news is that it typically only costs around $100 to $150 to do it. Check out how to prepare for a driveway repaving job and learn the questions to ask if you choose to hire the job out.

3. Before: Dull Exterior

Dullness is pervasive in

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Natural cleaning solution credit: Ana Stanciu

Rome wasn't cleaned in a day — that's how the saying goes, right? In any case, neither is your home. But with a reasonable, regular cleaning schedule — somewhere south of Martha Stewart but north of your average college student — every room in your home can stay spick and span, and healthy, year-round.

credit: Paul Anderson

You might be surprised about just how dirty and germy the kitchen can get. Push up your shirtsleeves and get to work — the kitchen won't clean itself.

Once a day

  • Wash your dishes
  • Disinfect your cutting board (It has 200 times more coliform bacteria
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