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1070 posts tagged with house.
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How to not get scammed when renting a house?

We're moving in a month or so and beginning to look at rental houses in Seattle. I'm a bit rusty, but what is the general procedure for establishing the person you're speaking with is the actual home owner and everything is on the up-and-up? [more inside]
posted by lattiboy on Apr 27, 2014 - 7 answers

I want to rebuild my grandparents' house... in miniature

I have a deeply nostalgic love for my grandparents' former home, a generic but beloved split level they lived in from the 1950s to mid 2000s. As an artist and crafter with an obsessive love for details, I have long noodled with the idea of making an incredibly accurate recreation of the house in miniature... but I struggle with where to start. Architectural models, dollhouses? What is the best route forward? [more inside]
posted by allisonrae on Apr 26, 2014 - 9 answers

What do I do about this hole in my yard?

I discovered a hole, roughly 10 inches across, in my yard (at a house I just moved into). It's basically a pipe going far far down, and had a stone top resting over the hole, loosely covering it. It reminds me of the Baby Jessica well, which makes me want to get rid of it, fill it in, cover it up. But I don't know what it is. Who might I call to figure out what it is, what it's for, if I can just remove the whole thing, or if it's necessary to keep it as-is?
posted by davebug on Apr 25, 2014 - 28 answers

How often does the freight train pass by this house I wanna buy?

How often does the freight train pass by this house I wanna buy? is it annoying? I wanna buy a house near here and I am curious how often the trains pass by, if it will be annoying or not. Can anyone find a schedule of the trains that pass by so I can go stand there while it passes by and see how annoying it is? Does anyone have history or advice on living near train tracks?
posted by lijiaxiaoniu on Apr 20, 2014 - 26 answers

Home design/decorating blogs that AREN'T minimalist

My sweetie and I are doing some big redesign stuff in our house, and I am trying to find design/furniture/decorating inspiration. I am looking specifically for blog that go beyond the minimalist look. [more inside]
posted by Ideal Impulse on Apr 18, 2014 - 20 answers

Looking for a decently priced New Jersey weekend beach house!

8-10 people want to rent a beach house in New Jersey for a weekend (ideally Asbury Park), hopefully for $50/person per night. Everything we've seen wants a week-long commitment. Is our New Jersey beach weekend feasible? [more inside]
posted by Hwaet on Apr 16, 2014 - 7 answers

Weird House Smell

There's a mysterious metallic smell in a bedroom in my house. What is it and how do I get rid of it? [more inside]
posted by ariadne's threadspinner on Apr 10, 2014 - 7 answers

Electrically flummoxed.

Half of my house has lost power. The breakers are fine. You're not my electrician - I just want to understand what the problem is or might be. [more inside]
posted by amy lecteur on Apr 4, 2014 - 16 answers

Redundant chimney problems.

I'm having problems with a potential leak or condensation problem in an external chimney chase that no longer has hot air running through the exhaust venting. I've not had any luck with the contractor that made the chimney redundant and need some advice. [more inside]
posted by Gregarious introvert on Apr 3, 2014 - 5 answers

Keep the Pollen off My Porch, Please

I have, on the second floor of my home in Texas, a screened-in porch with chairs, a massage table, and a sauna. Every few months, everything is coated in a fine yellow mist, and (ignoring what havoc it wrecks with my sinuses) the whole place is a two-hour pain to clean. Hive Mind: Suggestions for keeping the pollen out? Alternatively, suggestions for cleaning that are more effective (I always end up with some on the roof of the sauna, some in the structural whatsits in the roof, all over the floor, chairs, table, etc) than going through with a 36 pack of bar rags and crazily-diluted bleach?
posted by Seeba on Mar 31, 2014 - 8 answers

Giving our house a facelift

Our house has ugly, dirty, dented, hole-y vinyl siding. I hate it and want to replace it. Problems: We live in a cheap neighborhood and don't want to overdo it, and we are short on cash. [more inside]
posted by raspberrE on Mar 18, 2014 - 8 answers

Buying when I'm not selling?

I recently purchased a house. The deed was recorded back then and the initial flurry of "you should buy our security system, new homeowner!" junk mail has stopped. After a few weeks of quiet in my mailbox, I'm now receiving individual letters asking to buy my house. None of them has quoted a price, nor do I really want to sell. I usually just e-mail the address on the letter saying "make me an offer and maybe." Should I do anything else? [more inside]
posted by fireoyster on Mar 16, 2014 - 12 answers

Can we have the house we want near Boston on our budget?

We like the modern amenities, but hate the lack of charm of nearby tear-downs. Could we get what we want in a custom build within our budget? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Mar 11, 2014 - 14 answers

Paid off mortgage -- how would new house purchase financing work?

Me and my SO completely paid off our mortgage a couple years ago. So, we have full equity. That's great, we're happy w/the situation. Now, if for whatever reason we decide to uproot and move to an entirely new city and/or state, how would the financing work? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Mar 9, 2014 - 8 answers

Production Home Help Needed

My husband and I are thinking about having a home built -- a production home -- in one of the many subdivisions in our growing area. We have purchased a home before (and sold it later; not in our current area) but it was older and had been flipped. What do we need to know about the production home process? [more inside]
posted by danielle the bee on Mar 9, 2014 - 9 answers

Wean me off of Disclosure - please recommend some house-flavored jams

I have a cursory understanding of EDM, but I'm obsessed with Disclosure... yet I've played their album to death. Please help me find something new to listen to. [more inside]
posted by blue t-shirt on Mar 7, 2014 - 14 answers

House cleaners in Albuquerque?

I'm interested in hiring a house cleaner for my Albuquerque home. I'd like bi-weekly or monthly cleanings of the public spaces and both bathrooms (around 2,00 sq. ft.), as well as those "major cleaning" things, such as windows, on a schedule. I'd like them to use effective cleaners that are also somewhat green-ish (clean trumps green). Because I do animal rescue, I do have cats/dogs in the house (most foster dogs are crated when I'm not home). Any recommendations?
posted by answergrape on Mar 3, 2014 - 1 answer

Arrowhead wall fixture in 70's house?

We had a home inspected today that included two of these fixtures (below cut). They say "Arrowhead" on them but even our inspector had no idea what they were. Home was built in 1972. Any ideas, old home lovers? [more inside]
posted by juniperesque on Mar 2, 2014 - 15 answers

Fun activities for a house bound dad?

My poor dad is recovering from an accident, and is stuck in the house during this crazy winter. What are some fun activities to keep him busy while we wait for the snow to melt? [more inside]
posted by silverstatue on Feb 26, 2014 - 15 answers

All our eggs in one basket? First time home buyers...

My wife and I have been working and saving over the last 4-5 years. We've managed to pay off all of our debts and have gotten ahead. It feels great to be debt free, but we want to buy a house. We found a bank foreclosure that's been sitting vacant for 6 years as it slowly worked through the courts. We have just enough to buy it outright, but that will leave us almost broke. Should we buy it? [more inside]
posted by karst on Feb 21, 2014 - 28 answers

Would you live next door to a sex offender?

My girlfriend and I put an offer on a house two weeks ago, and only thought now to check the sex offender registry. Turns out the guy next door was convicted in 2004 of aggravated sexual battery. Is this a deal breaker? I can't imagine her being alone at home with someone like that so close by. I really think we need to get out of the deal and look for another place but we really like this one and it's a bummer to start the whole process again.
posted by Clustercuss on Feb 19, 2014 - 60 answers

Is this a fair price for new windows?

Looking at getting new windows in our house. Replacing 20 windows, got a quote of about $22,000. Had sticker shock but then looked at details, now wondering if it's a fair price. [more inside]
posted by arniec on Feb 18, 2014 - 23 answers

Plumbing woes

I'm asking this Q for a friend and I really hope someone will be able to help. We moved into our house about two years ago. We've had problems with our sprinklers in the past and when we had them repaired, a sprinkler expert told my wife there was "something wrong" with how we get water to the front since they couldn't shut off the water. That didn't make sense to me, but now that I've tried to fix the sprinklers in the front myself, I've encountered the same problem. When I turn off the shut off valves near the water meter (what I think are the main valves), nothing happens, though it does turn off the water to the backyard. When I need to repair plumbing inside the house, the valve close to the house does the trick, but again, I can't shut off water to the front sprinklers. I have no idea how the sprinklers were installed, but it is getting frustrating and I'd like to know how to go about troubleshooting this. Is there any way to identify where a valve might be to shut off the water to the front sprinklers? Here's a simple diagram I drew. Thank you!!!
posted by BitterYouth on Feb 17, 2014 - 17 answers

Where Should I Bail Out of House of Cards?

How many episodes of House of Cards should I watch (given three assumptions)? [more inside]
posted by Quisp Lover on Feb 7, 2014 - 17 answers

Basements and Attics in North America

I've been wondering about this for a long time- how prevalent are basements and attics in houses in North America? It seems like I'm always hearing about people doing projects in their basements (or dwelling in them!)- or having all sorts of treasures stashed away up in their attics. [more inside]
posted by Philby on Feb 7, 2014 - 59 answers

Fixing a Hole (where the cold gets in)

What's the best (most weatherized and solid) way to fill in a 22" square window well in a south facing concrete wall that happens to one side of my house? [more inside]
posted by msalt on Feb 1, 2014 - 19 answers

What are possible reasons that a basement would flood after snow melts?

What are the potential reasons you'd get water seeping into a basement after melting snow, but not after hard rains? Assume floors and carpets are drenched and soggy after a big snow melts, with water evident beneath linoleum, but there is not actual standing water. Would this be proof of a foundation crack? Also assume soil/earth outside the home is of a somewhat nonabsorbent quality, so that there are standing pools in the yard after each rain. Does this affect the diagnosis?
posted by third rail on Jan 30, 2014 - 7 answers

Tell me about California closets please.

Hi AskMe. I need to do something about the closets in my 30+ year old house. I would like a more efficient use of space both for the master walk in closet and the smaller bedrooms. Simple shelf + rod no longer cut it. I have no idea how to do that myself so I'm thinking of California Closets who seem to get a lot of praise online. Have you had any experience with them (or a similar outfit)? Satisfied? Please tell me about your experience.
posted by aeighty on Jan 22, 2014 - 14 answers

Costs of pricey home repairs/replacements? (& IDing them before buying)

We're first time homebuyers, and getting a little overwhelmed thinking about all the things we might have to fix and/or replace in whatever house we buy, and how that should affect what we're willing to pay for a home. What are the most expensive (and/or frustrating to fix) things we should be keeping an eye out for and factoring into deciding whether to make an offer on a house and the offer price (i.e. adjusting up/down compared to comparable homes)? [more inside]
posted by EmilyClimbs on Jan 21, 2014 - 13 answers

Time to buy a house!

I have a newly good income, a very tiny (yes, I mean very tiny) beginning of a savings account, shitty credit, a little (in the hundreds) debt and I want to buy a house. What should I do? [more inside]
posted by latkes on Jan 13, 2014 - 10 answers

Help clueless future parents buy the right home to raise kids in!

As future parents and first time homebuyers, what aren't we thinking about, or under-emphasizing/over-emphasizing, in trying to pick a home to raise (two) kids in?  What should we consider in deciding on house versus condo, location, neighborhood, size, layout, features, etc? [more inside]
posted by EmilyClimbs on Jan 10, 2014 - 36 answers

A porch is a porch of course of course..

We are creating a new front porch at our house. The existing porch is a three inch concrete slab set on foundation walls. A previous owner then overlaid really ugly sandstone flagstone on the top and sides. The new porch is going to be smooth, hard troweled tinted concrete with a bench along two sides. Here are my two questions. [more inside]
posted by silsurf on Jan 6, 2014 - 7 answers

How do I find a Mortgage Broker?

I live in Vancouver and I'll be looking to buy a condo this year somewhere in Coquitlam or New Westminster. I've never bought a place before and have literally no idea what I'm doing. I'm told a Mortgage Broker is my best bet but how do I choose the right one for me? [more inside]
posted by JenThePro on Jan 2, 2014 - 6 answers

Cob houses and dust mite allergies?

My husband and I are interested in building a low-cost house (in India, where we live). We've been researching building materials/technologies and cob is something that interested us. But we aren't sure whether cob houses might be prone to getting dusty (in particular, dust-mitey) and set off my allergies. [more inside]
posted by miaow on Dec 30, 2013 - 3 answers

Glass Block or Insulated Replacement Window

So I have been working on my house and making it energy efficient. It is now time to replace the basement windows in my split level. One double wide window needs to be replaced with one that opens to meet code, but the other three single wide windows do not. Would I be better installing glass blocks in those three, not vented, or installing either a picture, slider, or another type of insulated vinyl replacement window? If I should do a replacement window, which type should I use? [more inside]
posted by Nackt on Dec 19, 2013 - 6 answers

Specialist brick repairs in South London

My house, a standard Victorian terrace, has several spalled bricks. I'm looking for a reliable, preferably cheap, brickwork specialist in [South] London. [more inside]
posted by MuffinMan on Dec 18, 2013 - 4 answers

The house that no one wants, but I'm stuck with

I'm in a pickle - I own a house that I've been renting out for several years but things recently soured with the tenants and property managers and it is now vacant. Listed for sale but market is painfully slow - should I hold out for a buyer or list it for rent again? [more inside]
posted by photo guy on Dec 13, 2013 - 10 answers

What to do about a difficult roommate part II

This happened before. Since then there have been multiple recurrences of shouting/aggressive talking, door-slamming, and general verbal and nonverbal weirdness. My other roommates are open to asking her to find somewhere else to live, but seem to be looking to me. We have a house meeting tonight and I was asked if I want to bring this up. I'm... uncomfortable and also in finals and then leaving for a number of weeks. What should I do, and how should I do it? [more inside]
posted by c'mon sea legs on Dec 9, 2013 - 29 answers

Can I buy my parents' house in a way that makes financial sense?

My parents have always struggled financially, living under crippling debt and never able to have an income able to match the bills, the biggest of which is their mortgage. I hate to see how difficult this situation is for my dad, and I want to help out for the sake of his stress level, and also because once he retires in a few years the math truly does not work out in their favor. I've been thinking of buying some land anyway, so I'm wondering if there is any feasible way to make this work for both my parents and me. [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Dec 8, 2013 - 20 answers

Should I/am I ready to buy a place?

I thought I wasn't ready to buy a place, but with all the advice I've been getting from everyone, I wonder if I should. [more inside]
posted by glache on Dec 6, 2013 - 17 answers

What do we need to know before we build our house?

We are preparing to build a house. We've been doing this for many months, have talked to architects, contractors, and our city's planning and building department, and we still have lots of questions. Lend us some expertise on foundations, design, and construction? [more inside]
posted by sibilatorix on Dec 1, 2013 - 14 answers

Flood Plains, Surveying, and Housing Projects

Recently I purchased a home that has acerage. Part of the acerage, part of the garage, and part of the lean-to are in the flood plain. The house and the rest of the land are not. Trying to figure out logistics between house projects, FEMA zones, and surveying. [more inside]
posted by aetg on Nov 27, 2013 - 9 answers

How to discuss possible theft with house cleaner?

I have had the same house cleaner every two weeks for close to 20 years with no issues. He is very honest. The main guy comes every time and I trust him enough to have a key to my house, but his crew of 2 or 3 that accompanies him seems to change. On Sunday night I wore a diamond pendant and 3 not-valuable stacking rings. I recall removing them and placing them in the drawer where they live when I'm not wearing them. The cleaning people came Wednesday. I went to wear them again today (Friday) and found the necklace and one of the three stacking rings missing. [more inside]
posted by cecic on Nov 22, 2013 - 17 answers

How do I swap houses with my mother?

My mother has suddenly got into a position where she cannot afford to keep up payments on her mortgage since retiring. The amount left she has to pay is £14,000. I have a mortgage of £72,000 left to pay on my own house. How do I go about tacking the £14,000 onto my own mortgage and swapping houses so she lives in my place mortgage free and I have her house with an increased mortgage? (Bonus points for a super easy fix for all this!)
posted by aqueousdan on Nov 17, 2013 - 12 answers

Appraising a property to split equity

I currently jointly own a property in the US, that both parties agree I should take sole possession of. I would like to get a realistic appraisal value, in order to buy out the other person. Is there anything particular that I should discuss with a potential appraiser when I contact them? Thanks! [more inside]
posted by carter on Nov 14, 2013 - 6 answers

Summoning native Rhode Islanders

Help me locate this historic home /museum in the Fall River area of Rhode Island near or across the border in Massachusetts. (No Lovecraft jokes required.) [more inside]
posted by bad grammar on Nov 13, 2013 - 16 answers

Buying a house... weirdly

I want to buy the house I'm renting. How do I even start? [more inside]
posted by MrVisible on Nov 13, 2013 - 12 answers

Preparing my house for a new adopted shelter dog

What can I do to make my home "dog-proof" for the new 18-month-old dog I'm getting from a shelter? And what can I do to ease the trauma for him of moving to a completely new home? [more inside]
posted by madman on Nov 13, 2013 - 11 answers

Moving a digital piano. Difficulty filter: UK to Belgium.

Further to my earlier question, I want to have my digital piano with me in Belgium. Suggestions? [more inside]
posted by fearnothing on Nov 12, 2013 - 4 answers

What regular maintenance should I schedule for our new home?

We bought a house, yay. It’s a small 1910’s bungalow with gas appliances and everything basically works. The foundation’s been replaced in the not-too-distant past and it’s ready for an earthquake. I've never been anything but a renter, so what kinds of regular maintenance should I be thinking about to minimize the risk of catastrophic emergency repairs? Plumbing, gas, heating, electrical, sewers: what’s a good schedule, and what kinds of things do I ask for to make clear that there’s nothing particularly wrong but I’d like to keep it that way? I looked at this old question, but most of the interesting-sounding links are dead.
posted by migurski on Nov 12, 2013 - 10 answers

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