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 -
I have an aging stereo with decent speakers that I'd like to somehow convert so that I can stream music from my phone or computer. Is this possible? Details and pictures inside. [more inside]
posted by rensar
on Jan 8, 2014 -
I rent, and tonight I heard the sound of running water in my yard. I went outside to investigate and saw that water was spurting upwards out of this black pipe in the yard that is about 8" in diameter and sticks out of the ground about a foot (link to picture inside). The pipe has a cap on it that has a hole in it - it looks like an intentional hole that water is supposed to come out of. However, I've lived here for years and I've never seen or heard this happening. It rained today, and I live in SoCal where it hardly rains, but again, this seemed new. The water coming out was substantial and flooded a bit of my (very small) yard. After a while the water flow petered out. Since then, it's been going on and off at random intervals. I've tried to see if me running the water or flushing the toilet is connected to this, but I'm not sure that there is a correlation. The water coming out looked clear, but smelled a little funky and may have emitted a little steam (I didn't want to touch it to check the temp). The pipe is located less than a foot away from the side of the house and is next to my water heater that is located outdoors in some sort of locker thing. I've left a message for the landlord but wanted to see if anyone has any insight as to what this thing may be, and if this is unusual. Thanks! [more inside]
posted by emily37
on Dec 20, 2013 -
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 -
What is it like owning a home near a *loud* highway or other noisy high-traffic roadway? How do you cope? Will I regret buying this house? [more inside]
posted by falldownpaul
on Nov 2, 2013 -
What do I do with years-old equipment that belongs to my old cable service provider?
Equipment dates from 2009. Furnished by Verizon FIOS, which then switched to Frontier FIOS. A cable modem, DVR, and set-top box. We moved house in 2010, and cancelled Frontier service. Attempted to return the equipment. This involved them shipping empty boxes to us. We never got the boxes. Attempts failed. I have no documentation of those attempts. Equipment is sitting in our garage, and I need to get rid of it.
Which option is best?
The easy way: Donate the equipment to a recycler.
The hard way: Contact Frontier and try to return their equipment. This is likely to be time-consuming, and annoying. I recall their CS was incredibly awful. I couldn't find any helpful info on their web site. And what if they want to charge me a "late return fee"???
Do big cable providers care about their old equipment?
posted by valannc
on Oct 16, 2013 -
Our 2.5 year old Onkyo receiver has died. Again. At this point, I'm looking for a replacement, with some requirements, some wishes, and some thoughts, and an awful lot of confusion. I'm hoping some of you might have thoughts. [more inside]
posted by JMOZ
on Oct 16, 2013 -
I have an ATV2. It asks me to turn on home sharing. I do. ATV insists that i turn on home sharing. It worked in my previous location excepting a few times, where I just unplugged the router and ATV and replugged back in. It worked here on initial setup the first try but a few days later this whole stuff happens. It worked again only after I did a complete factory reset. I have read many of the threads online and perhaps it is a bit of daftness on my part. This previous thread on mefi
helped the gentleman with his question. I didn't actually understand it very well. I have an iMac running Snow Leopard. The ATV does connect
to Netflix and all other things. Just not my computer. [more inside]
posted by snap_dragon
on Sep 9, 2013 -
I'm having a weird problem with Dropbox, and googling is failing me because lots of people can't find their Dropbox files. But I can't find them in a very special and exciting way, involving differences between Finder and the command line. What am I dealing with here? [more inside]
posted by heyforfour
on Sep 4, 2013 -
A year ago, I bought a new TV
with HDMI capability and hooked it up to my PC to work as a monitor (with a straight HDMI cable connection). IT. IS. AWESOME.
I just moved into a new place with more room and now want to connect my surround sound system (5 speakers) to this setup as well.
This is the receiver
I'm considering purchasing and from what I can tell, will do what I need.
Extra potentially pertinent info:
- PC has two HDMI ports (one on the video card)
- Nintendo Wii connected directly to TV via RCA cables
- BluRay player connected to TV via HDMI cable
I want my setup to allow me to use the surround sound at all times (when watching broadcast TV, when using the TV as the PC monitor, when using the BluRay player and when using the Wii (this is the least important)). I'm assuming the TV will connect to the receiver (via HDMI) and the PC will also connect to the receiver (via HDMI) and all other hook-ups will remain as-is.
Thanks in advance for any advice or tips on how to make this easy! This will be my dream setup so I'm excited to get it right.
posted by Twicketface
on Jul 29, 2013 -
I'm looking to develop a good maintenance schedule for my new old home. It was built in 1930, radiator heat, newish boiler and water heater. Beyond the standard cleaning, what kinds of monthly, yearly, semi-yearly things should I be doing to make sure it doesn't fall apart?
posted by Think_Long
on Jul 22, 2013 -
Just moved into a rental house. House built circa 1920. Medicine cabinet interior was completely lined with nasty old contact paper. I pulled off most of the paper. Now I'm worried about three things:
1. The paint underneath the paper is flaking. Is there danger of lead poisoning?
2. Black mold in the corner crevices under the paper. What's the best chemical for removal? Bleach solution?
3. What's the easiest cheapest way to get new shelves that will fit?
Any advice or encouragement is appreciated. How do I make this cabinet clean and functional?
I don't like fixing old houses. Unfortunately there is much to do in this old house. The kitchen is a contact paper festival. The rental market is tight here, so landlords don't have to care.
posted by valannc
on Jul 20, 2013 -
Buying-Our-First-House-Filter: Planning Edition. I've already read some of the other great AskMe threads about first homes and renovations and all of that, but one thing I haven't really seen (here or on the oft-recommended DIY blogs) is a solid recommendation or list of reviews of planning software related to home reno/landscaping. [more inside]
posted by Doleful Creature
on Jul 18, 2013 -
I stopped weeding the yard a few years ago because my grass allergies are pretty bad. Even when I've covered my skin with gloves, jeans, and covered shoes I've gotten so itchy that I couldn't sleep at night. Bt the weeds come fast and furious in our yard and my husband has a hard time pulling them all, even though he uses Roundup to help keep them at bay. So I'd like to help if I can, and am wondering if there are effective ways to protect my skin to minimize allergic reactions. OTC itch medicines haven't made much of a difference for me.
posted by lirael2008
on Jul 9, 2013 -
Do I dare try replacing the door gasket on my frontload washing machine?
Photo of damaged gasket
. It's not supposed to look like a ruffle. It's supposed to be smooth. The damaged occurred when I was washing a duvet cover and sheets. The load became very unbalanced and the machine leapt and jumped.
Has anyone ordered the part and done a successful
DIY repair? Or should I pay a service tech?
The machine is a Maytag MHWE200XW00. It looks like we could get the gasket shipped for about $120
posted by valannc
on Jun 10, 2013 -
My mom and I want to transfer her house to me, her son as cheaply and quickly as possible. We live in Columbus Ohio Franklin county if that helps. I'd prefer not to have to pay a lawyer or whatever but I will if it's necessary to get it done quickly. Having it completed within 10 days would be great, is this possible? and how do we do it? websites, phone numbers, etc. would be helpful!
posted by crawltopslow
on May 20, 2013 -
So. I live on the ground floor. My apartment complex hires leafblowers to come and blow leaves and dirt out of the parking lot twice a week. Every time they come to do this, I come home to dirt, in the entryway of my apartment, that has blown in under my front door. It's a new door, with a new rubber guard at the bottom. How can I prevent this from happening?
posted by sevensnowflakes
on Apr 1, 2013 -
I'm inthe process of designing a comprehensive refit of a 21 Metre Dutch Barge and thought it's about time I made at least a small amount of use of my Robotics background.
I'm thinking about including a vast array of sensors throughout the inside and outside and feeding it all into a central computer, then probably using these sensor feeds to do various automation actions.
So this question has a few parts, some technical and some not. [more inside]
posted by Just this guy, y'know
on Mar 27, 2013 -
I am trying to purchase a foreclosed house with a homepath loan, but I do not qualify for a homepath loan despite excellent credit. Apparently a conventional loan will not work for the current condition of the home. Can you help me sort out my options in Virginia? [more inside]
posted by shortyJBot
on Mar 3, 2013 -
My baby brother moved to London yesterday and I'm sadder than sad. We're really close and he lived a couple of minutes from me so we hung out a lot. I'm going to miss him so much and it'll take me a while to accept that he's a flight away, and I can't just randomly drop in on him, hear his little hello, and settle down for a few hours of putting the world to rights. My usual way of dealing with sadness is not very productive - namely substances of varying degrees of legality, and chocolate. Help me make a list of positive things I can do to lift me out of the little pool of tears I'm in. He's left me one of his guitars - which was mine about 20 years ago - and I'm determined to learn it this time. Any other suggestions? Thanks.
posted by billiebee
on Mar 3, 2013 -
I have a two-car garage with a LiftMaster automatic garage door opener that is misbehaving and it's driving me crazy. It seems to be randomly just opening the door long after it is closed and I can't figure out why. I've seen the other questions about garage door openers but was hoping for some advice specific to my situation. [more inside]
posted by misskaz
on Feb 22, 2013 -
I am planning to convert my basement into a bedroom for one of my brothers to use. I was thinking all that was needed was carpeting and paint, but one of my friends recently told me that I may need to have some kind of modification to the basement windows or walls so that there's a fire escape route apart from the stairs. Is this the case? I've had a hard time finding a definitive legal reference as to what I need to do to have someone legally sleep in my basement. [more inside]
posted by Vorteks
on Feb 21, 2013 -
Help us figure out how to cover up or replace this god awful kitchen floor. We just purchased a farmhouse that was renovated in the mid 50s. The mudroom and kitchen have 9" asphalt tiles that are all coming up (so not level), and on top of that, the prior owner used these rooms as a kennel for his incontinent daschund. [more inside]
posted by checkitnice
on Feb 16, 2013 -
My partner and I are about to buy a house together, and we're trying to decide how to do this. We're gay, and hence technically unmarried, and we're trying to figure out the tax implications of the different options. [more inside]
posted by Tooty McTootsalot
on Dec 5, 2012 -
Is it possible to roast an already roasted coffee a little bit darker in the oven on a baking sheet? [more inside]
posted by roboton666
on Dec 4, 2012 -
I'm moving into a new place! Hooray! But it harbors the scent of the last tenant. Boo. How do I fix this? [more inside]
posted by mochapickle
on Oct 26, 2012 -
Married, and have some savings. Does it make sense buying a condo just for giving it out as rental? Caveat - I may have to sell it off in about 3-4 years though so I'm wondering whether it'll all be worth it. [more inside]
posted by bbyboi
on Jul 31, 2012 -
The sparkers on my gas cook-top keep 'sparking' even when everything is turned off. There is no gas flowing to the range but the little spark plugs keeping sparking by themselves. From my lounge room I can hear them and it's getting worse and worse.
Any ideas? Should I just get someone in to fix it? European stainless steel cook-top around 10 years old. I saw this AskMefi
, but it doesn't quite answer my question.
posted by evil_esto
on Jun 30, 2012 -
Flatmate filter: I'm planning on having a calm discussion with one of my flatmates this weekend about some issues I know she has about the house, but that haven't been discussed in the open. I would like tips on remaining calm and collected in the moment. [more inside]
posted by mooza
on Jun 3, 2012 -
I'm on a quest for inexpensive (over the long haul) home carbonation. The big limit here is NO PLASTIC. HomeBrewFilter? [more inside]
posted by kalessin
on Jun 2, 2012 -
We just bought a new three-story house with 2,900 square feet of gorgeous dark hardwood floors that make every single tiny speck of dust stand out (and we're about to get a short-haired, light-colored dog). How the hell do I keep this place clean without going crazy? [more inside]
posted by halogen
on May 17, 2012 -
Cohabiting couples, how do you handle the housework? Is there a clear distinction between your mess and their mess? [more inside]
posted by emelenjr
on May 4, 2012 -
Can I keep my hair blonde using at home products? Is there anything I need to know to not screw it up? Can anyone recommend specific products? [more inside]
posted by Quincy
on Apr 27, 2012 -
So much of my headspace is wrapped up in how my house looks (which is not so awesome) and it drags me down whenever I’m at home. This isn’t how I want to feel about my home. Can you help me change my attitude? [more inside]
posted by anderjen
on Apr 12, 2012 -