Just listed: 2160 Forest Ave, Staten Island, NY 10303 for $3,000 via @realbird.

Just listed: 2162 Forest Ave, Staten Island, NY 10303 for $2,000 via @realbird.

154 Steuben St, Staten Island, NY 10304, USA – Lovely Affordable Two Bedroom End Unit – real estate listing.

Just listed: 16 Sandy Lane, Staten Island, NY 10307 for $315,000 via @realbird.

10 Doreen Drive, Staten Island, NY 10303, USA – Affordable two level townhouse with private yard – real estate listing.

Just listed: 63 Kenmore Street, Staten Island, NY 10312 for $489,000 via @realbird.

Banks are lending. First time home buyers call A.T. Real Estate Specialists LLC, licensed Real Estate broker.
Find out if you qualify for a grant of up to $15,000. Arlene Trunzo 718-317-0949
We sell and market homes in Staten Island NY. www.atrealestatespecialists.com


By: Jamie Goldberg

Published: January 10, 2012

Mulling a kitchen remodel but want to keep costs low? You’re au courant with today’s trends that emphasize options and high-tech wizardry at affordable prices.

Trend #1: Remodeling scales back

A new focus on moderation and value has entered the remodeling mind-set. Trends that are likely to show up in your kitchen next year include:
You’ll repair your existing appliances instead of replacing them, extending their life with good maintenance and care. If you’re replacing cabinets, you’re likely to build around your current appliances rather than choosing new models.
You’re scaling back your cabinetry purchases, with an increased emphasis on kitchen storage and functionality over elaborate decoration. For example, rather than stacked crown moldings throughout the kitchen, you’ll put your money into practical roll-out trays and drawer organizers.
Small-scale kitchen projects are big news. Changing out cabinet hardware, replacing a faucet, and refacing your cabinets upgrades your kitchen without major expense.
Trend #2: Simpler, warmer styles dominate
Fussiness and excess have faded away in favor of pared-back looks that present a more timeless, value-conscious style.
Cabinet decoration continues to streamline. For example, massive corbels, once fashionable as under counter supports, will give way to sleeker countertop supports and cantelivered countertop edges. Stacked moldings will pare back or disappear entirely. Elaborately glazed finishes will yield to simpler paints and stains.

Kitchen finishes will continue to get warmer and darker, and feature natural and stained woods. Walnut especially is growing in popularity.
Laminate countertops will continue to surge in popularity, especially in contemporary design. The latest European-inspired laminates offer more textured and naturalistic finishes than ever before. While exotic wood kitchen cabinets are out of reach for most home owners, glossy, look-alike laminate versions can be had for about one-third the price. Trend #3: Technology expands its kitchen presence
Many of the techno products and trends that relate to your smartphones and tablets have just started making their way into your local showrooms and home centers.
Appliances will be equipped with USB ports and digital screens so you can display your family photographs and kids’ artwork.
Smart, induction built-in cooktops ($500-$3,000) remember your temperature settings as you move your pans across their entire surface.
One light finger touch is all it takes to open the electronically controlled sliding doors of your kitchen cabinets — a boon to people with limited mobilities. You’ll pay 40% to 70% more for cabinets with electronically controlled doors than standard models.
You’ll be able to use your smart phones and tablets to control lights and appliance settings from anywhere you have a wi-fi connection, as well as to shop for appliances from major manufacturers.
You’ll be opting for LEDs for your recessed lights, under-cabinet task lighting and color-changing accent lighting. You’ll see more LED-powered pendants and chandeliers from major manufacturers as inefficient incandescent bulbs continue their march toward extinction.
A wide selection of affordable microwave ovens with convection and even steam features gives owners of smaller kitchen spaces more high-end cooking power.
What improvements — big or small — are you planning for your kitchen this year?


By: Gavin Mathis

Published: January 20, 2012

Existing-home sales, low mortgage rates, and a spike in home builder confidence point to a housing turnaround.

Rebounding from another slow year, the housing market is picking up steam. Prospective home buyers are taking advantage of low mortgage rates, and home builder sentiment reached its highest level in more than 4 years this week. Housing is also gaining a bit of attention on the campaign trail. Dems and Republicans took part at a South Carolina rally promoting home ownership. Read these headlines and more in this week’s Friday Five. HouseLogic: Home Sales Rise in December
Existing-home sales continued on a uptrend in December, rising for a third consecutive month and remaining above a year ago, according to the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®.

CNN Money: Mortgage Applications Surge Amid Record-Low Rates

Mortgage loan applications surged 23% last week, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association, as record-low interest rates convinced many home owners it was time to refinance into lower-cost loans.

Wall Street Journal: Home-Builder Sentiment Hits Highest Level Since Mid-2007

U.S. home builders’ sentiment rose in January to the highest level in 4 1/2 years, the latest in a series of signs that the housing market is finally beginning to recover after a prolonged bust.

The State: Rally for Home Ownership Bridges Political Divide

Hundreds turned out in a diverse crowd for a rally designed to head off prospective federal legislation that could hurt home buyers and owners. The well-publicized rally attracted Republican presidential candidate and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, along with U.S. Rep. Jim Clyburn (D-S.C.), and former U.S. Rep. J.C. Watts of Oklahoma, a Republican.

 HouseLogic: Time for GOP Candidates, and Obama, to Step Up on Housing Policy

If you’ve been paying attention to the Republican presidential candidates lately, you wouldn’t guess that housing is one the most important issues on voters’ minds. Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum, and Newt Gingrich — the top three finishers in most national polls — have been fairly quiet on the issue. Instead, the leading Republican contenders have been narrowly focused on attacking President Barack Obama’s jobs record.

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