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Archive for August, 2010

Economic Update – August 30, 2010

Monday, August 30th, 2010




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Last Week in the News
________________________________________
Existing home sales fell 27.2% in July to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 3.83 million units from a downwardly revised 5.26 million units in June. The inventory of unsold homes on the market increased 2.5% to 3.98 million, a 12.5-month supply at the current sales pace, up from an 8.9-month supply in June.
The Mortgage Bankers Association said its seasonally adjusted composite index of mortgage applications for the week ending August 20 increased 4.9%. Refinancing applications rose 5.7%. Purchase volume rose 0.6%. Refinancing made up 82% of total applications.
Orders for durable goods — items expected to last three or more years — rose 0.3% in July after decreasing a revised 0.1% in June. The increase was largely due to improved demand for commercial aircraft. Excluding volatile transportation-related goods, orders posted a monthly decrease of 3.8%.
New home sales fell 12.4% in July to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 276,000 units from a revised rate of 315,000 units in June. It was the lowest reading since recordkeeping began in 1963. Economists had expected a pace of 330,000 units.
In its second report, the Commerce Department announced that gross domestic product — the total output of goods and services produced in the U.S. — increased at an annual rate of 1.6% in the second quarter of 2010, rather than the 2.4% increase initially reported.
Initial claims for unemployment benefits fell by 31,000 to 473,000 for the week ending August 21. Economists had projected claims would fall to 490,000. Continuing claims for the week ending August 14 fell by 62,000 to 4.46 million.
Upcoming on the economic calendar are reports on the housing price index on August 31, construction spending on September 1 and pending home sales on September 2.
Click here to visit my website and apply on line:

www.DavidJGarofalo.com



  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Economic Update   August 30, 2010 | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Economic Update   August 30, 2010 | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Economic Update   August 30, 2010 | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Economic Update   August 30, 2010 | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Economic Update   August 30, 2010 | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Economic Update   August 30, 2010 | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Economic Update   August 30, 2010 | CT Real Estate
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To Rent or To Buy??

Sunday, August 29th, 2010




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If you are wondering if you should rent or buy in Stamford, CT (or Beyond!) this video we found by the NAR® might help icon smile To Rent or To Buy?? | CT Real Estate

Source: Homes: Rent or Buy, (YouTube Video, Feb. 12, 2009).



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  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px To Rent or To Buy?? | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px To Rent or To Buy?? | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px To Rent or To Buy?? | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px To Rent or To Buy?? | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px To Rent or To Buy?? | CT Real Estate
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Welcome your guests with open arms, tips for creating curb appeal

Saturday, August 28th, 2010




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McDowellFrontyard236772 C22 Welcome your guests with open arms, tips for creating curb appeal | CT Real Estate

Backyard outdoor rooms are extremely popular everywhere in the United States. Outdoor kitchens, spas, video centers, fireplaces, pools, gazebos—all help to establish a wonderfully useable, comfortable, desirable living space in which to entertain family and friends. But many homeowners tend to forget about the front yard and entrance to their homes because…simply…they don’t spend much of their time there. “An owner returning home from work drives along the driveway to the garage and enters the house from that doorway, never even catching a glimpse of the front door of the house,” says Scott Cohen, a designer regularly featured on HGTV and the owner of The Green Scene, an award-winning residential landscape design and construction firm. “Owners feel that, although the backyard is theirs, the front of the home belongs to the neighbors. They often neglect it because they practically forget that it’s even there.”

Cohen says the front of a home should actually be of paramount importance. It’s the primary area seen by those approaching and leaving the home and by all passersby. The front entryway is the first thing an invited guest sees, so it should be attractive and hospitable. “I like an ‘open arms’ design for an entry,” explains Cohen. “The base of the stairs should be wide and, as they lead to the front door, the width should be reduced somewhat. The perception is one of welcoming, open arms to anyone moving toward the entry.” Cohen also advises against “duck walks” or an entryway access that is so tight that people must walk single file to reach or leave the door. “The entry should be generous and comfortably allow for two-way traffic,” he notes.

Cohen discourages owners from creating too many approaches from the front yard to the house. “Some homeowners offer a multitude of walkways to visitors,” he explains. “There’s a path from the front to the backyard, another path to a side yard or garage, as well as the steps leading to the front door. All these paths are confusing to guests; they don’t know which walkway to use.” Cohen believes the front door should be the main focus, and the walkway or stairs leading to that door should be prominent in the front-yard design.

Landscaping and architectural details that coordinate with the original structure will look like they belong and have always been a part of the house, Cohen says.

He advises using the same materials and shapes that are on the house in the landscaping design. “If a house has a low horizontal plane, so should the landscaping,” he says. “A grander home can handle a grander scale of architectural and landscaping details.” Nevertheless, he warns, “Never overdo or overpower the home itself.”

In order for steps to be attractive and safe, certain design elements should be included. Wide landings are comfortable to walk on and impressive looking. Stairs should be well lit for safety reasons. “Never light stairs from the top because that will cause a shadow. Light stairs from the side with eyebrow or pilaster lights or on the face of the step itself,” Cohen suggests. “I prefer side lighting myself. Lights on the face of a step tend to look more commercial.”

Landscaping plantings can be simple and monochromatic or ambitious and colorful. Dividing walls can be stone, stucco, or live hedge. But all the details should complement the original structure and coordinate with the original materials used in the construction of the house. Cohen adds, “A well-planned and appealing front entryway says ‘come on in’ to visitors and tells them that the owners are proud of their home and warmly welcome guests.” Written by Carolyn M. Runyon.

Be sure to check with your local municipality for set-back requirements or restrictions before designing your new front yard.




  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Welcome your guests with open arms, tips for creating curb appeal | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Welcome your guests with open arms, tips for creating curb appeal | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Welcome your guests with open arms, tips for creating curb appeal | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Welcome your guests with open arms, tips for creating curb appeal | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Welcome your guests with open arms, tips for creating curb appeal | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Welcome your guests with open arms, tips for creating curb appeal | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Welcome your guests with open arms, tips for creating curb appeal | CT Real Estate
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Ecomnomic Update – August 23, 2010

Monday, August 23rd, 2010




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Last Week in the News
________________________________________
The National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo housing market index fell one point in August to 13. Economists had anticipated a reading of 15. It was the lowest reading since March 2009. An index reading below 50 indicates negative sentiment about the housing market.
The combined construction of new single-family homes and apartments in July rose 1.7% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 546,000 units. Applications for new building permits, seen as an indicator of future activity, dropped 3.1% to an annual rate of 565,000 units.
The producer price index, which tracks wholesale price inflation, rose 0.2% in July, following a 0.5% decrease in June. Core prices — excluding food and fuel — rose 0.3% after a 0.1% increase in June. For the year, wholesale prices are up 4.1%.
Industrial production at the nation’s factories, mines and utilities increased 1% in July, following a revised 0.1% drop in June. Economists had anticipated a gain of 0.6%. Capacity utilization rose to 74.8% in July, the highest level since November 2008.
The Mortgage Bankers Association said its seasonally adjusted composite index of mortgage applications for the week ending August 13 increased 13%. Refinancing applications rose 17.1%. Purchase volume fell 3.4%.
Initial claims for unemployment benefits rose by 12,000 to 500,000 for the week ending August 14. It was the highest level since November 2009. Economists had projected claims would fall to 480,000. Continuing claims for the week ending August 7 fell by 13,000 to 4.48 million.
Upcoming on the economic calendar are reports on existing home sales on August 24, new home sales on August 25 and gross domestic product on August 27.

Click here to visit my website and apply on line:
www.DavidJGarofalo.com



  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Ecomnomic Update   August 23, 2010 | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Ecomnomic Update   August 23, 2010 | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Ecomnomic Update   August 23, 2010 | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Ecomnomic Update   August 23, 2010 | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Ecomnomic Update   August 23, 2010 | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Ecomnomic Update   August 23, 2010 | CT Real Estate
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Economic Update – August 16, 2010

Monday, August 16th, 2010




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Last Week in the News
________________________________________
According to the ICSC-Goldman Sachs index, retail sales fell 0.2% for the week ending August 7. On a year-over-year basis, retailers saw sales increase 3.7%.
The Labor Department reported that in the second quarter productivity fell at an annual rate of 0.9%, labor costs rose at an annual rate of 0.2% and hours worked climbed at a 3.6% rate. This is a likely signal that employers have reached efficiency limits out of leaner staffs. In 2009, productivity rose 3.5%, the highest rate in six years.
Wholesalers increased their inventories 0.1% in June, following a 0.5% rise in May. Sales at the wholesale level fell 0.7% in June, the most since March 2009. Economists had anticipated inventories would increase 0.4% in June.
The Mortgage Bankers Association said its seasonally adjusted composite index of mortgage applications for the week ending August 6 increased 0.6%. Refinancing applications rose 0.6%. Purchase volume rose 0.3%.
The trade deficit increased 18.8% to $49.9 billion in June. It was the highest level since October 2008 and follows a $42 billion gap in May. Economists had expected the trade deficit to rise to $42.1 billion. Exports fell 1.3% to $150.5 billion. Imports increased 3% to $200.3 billion.
Initial claims for unemployment benefits rose by 2,000 to 484,000 for the week ending August 7. It was the highest level since mid February. Economist had projected claims would fall to 465,000. Continuing claims for the week ending July 31 fell by 118,000 to 4.45 million.
Upcoming on the economic calendar are reports on the housing market index on August 16, housing starts on August 17 and the index of leading economic indicators on August 19.
Click here to visit my website and apply on line:

www.DavidJGarofalo.com



  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Economic Update   August 16, 2010 | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Economic Update   August 16, 2010 | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Economic Update   August 16, 2010 | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Economic Update   August 16, 2010 | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Economic Update   August 16, 2010 | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Economic Update   August 16, 2010 | CT Real Estate
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Economic Update – August 9, 2010

Monday, August 9th, 2010




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Last Week in the News
________________________________________
The Institute for Supply Management reported that the monthly composite index of manufacturing activity was 55.5 in July after reaching 56.2 in June. A reading above 50 signals expansion. It was the 12th straight month of expansion.
Total construction spending rose 0.1% to $836 billion in June, following a downwardly revised $834.8 billion in May. Economists had anticipated a drop of 0.8% in June.
Factory orders fell 1.2% in June to a seasonally adjusted $406.4 billion. The decline was more than double the 0.5% economists had anticipated and follows a revised decrease of 1.8% in May.
The National Association of Realtors reported that its pending home sales index, a forward-looking indicator based on signed contracts, fell 2.6% in June after a 30% decrease in May. On a year-over-year basis, pending home sales are down 18.6%.
The Mortgage Bankers Association said its seasonally adjusted composite index of mortgage applications for the week ending July 30 increased 1.3%. Refinancing applications rose 1.3%. Purchase volume rose 1.5%.
The Institute for Supply Management reported that the monthly composite index of non-manufacturing activity rose to 54.3 in July from 53.8 in June. A reading above 50 signals expansion. It was the seventh consecutive month of growth. Economists had anticipated a reading of 53.
Initial claims for unemployment benefits rose by 19,000 to 479,000 for the week ending July 31. Continuing claims for the week ending July 24 fell by 34,000 to 4.54 million. The unemployment rate remained unchanged at 9.5% in July.
Upcoming on the economic calendar are reports on wholesale trade on August 10, international trade on August 11 and retail sales on August 13.
Click here to visit my website and apply on line:
www.DavidJGarofalo.com



  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Economic Update   August 9, 2010 | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Economic Update   August 9, 2010 | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Economic Update   August 9, 2010 | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Economic Update   August 9, 2010 | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Economic Update   August 9, 2010 | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Economic Update   August 9, 2010 | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Economic Update   August 9, 2010 | CT Real Estate
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Econimic Update – August 2, 2010

Monday, August 2nd, 2010




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Last Week in the News
________________________________________
New home sales rose 23.6% in June to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 330,000 units from a revised rate of 267,000 units in May. Economists had expected a pace of 310,000 units. On a year-over-year basis, sales of new homes have fallen 16.7%.
The Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller 20-city housing price index — on a seasonally adjusted basis — rose 1.3% in May after a 0.9% increase in April. On a year-over-year basis, property values increased 4.6%, the largest gain since August 2006.
The consumer confidence index fell to 50.4 in July from an upwardly revised 54.3 in June. Economists had anticipated a reading of 51. The index was benchmarked at 100 in 1985, a year chosen because it was neither a peak nor a trough in consumer confidence.
The Mortgage Bankers Association said its seasonally adjusted composite index of mortgage applications for the week ending July 23 dropped 4.4%. Refinancing applications fell 5.9%. Purchase volume rose 2%.
Orders for durable goods — items expected to last three or more years — fell 1% in June after decreasing a revised 0.8% in May.
Initial claims for unemployment benefits fell by 11,000 to 457,000 for the week ending July 24. Continuing claims for the week ending July 17 rose by 81,000 to 4.57 million.
The Commerce Department announced that gross domestic product — the total output of goods and services produced in the U.S. — increased at an annual rate of 2.4% in the second quarter of 2010. Economists had expected a slightly larger 2.5% increase. This follows a revised 3.7% pace of growth in the first quarter of 2010.
Upcoming on the economic calendar are reports on construction spending on August 2, pending home sales on August 3 and consumer credit on August 6.

Click here to visit my website and apply on line:
www.DavidJGarofalo.com



  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Econimic Update   August 2, 2010 | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Econimic Update   August 2, 2010 | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Econimic Update   August 2, 2010 | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Econimic Update   August 2, 2010 | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Econimic Update   August 2, 2010 | CT Real Estate
  • wp socializer sprite mask 16px Econimic Update   August 2, 2010 | CT Real Estate
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