5 Tips for Finding Good Contractors In Your Area

If you’re in the home-flipping game, your profits are only as good as your contractor choices. Choose wisely, and you add value to your property without eating too much into the budget. Choose wrong, and you might just kiss those returns goodbye.

Unfortunately, as many contractors as are out there, finding a good one isn’t easy. Some won’t show up on time (or at all), others won’t hold to their estimates, and even worse, some just don’t have the skillset or experience they claim to.

Whatever their foibles are, they’ll cost you — either in time, money, or both.

Want to make sure you choose the best possible contractors from the get-go? Here’s how to do it:

Ask around

Did you like the remodel your neighbor just did? Ask who the contractor was. Have an investor friend? Get his recommendations. Have one contractor you trust, but need others to fill

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Only 54% of Buyers Think Now’s a Good Time to Buy a Home, Says Fannie Mae

A For Sale sign in front of a sunny green lawn and white two-story home.

Image source: Getty Images

When mortgage rates dropped to record lows back in July, it seemed like a prime opportunity for buyers. Then, in September, rates got even lower. In fact, for several months, it’s been a great time to buy a home from an interest rate perspective. But only 54% of buyers think now’s a good time to move forward with a home purchase, according to a new Fannie Mae survey. The question is: Are buyers being overly pessimistic, or might they indeed be better off waiting?

Why now’s not the best time to buy

The housing market has been grappling with limited inventory this year, and that’s meant supply is lower than demand. The result? Homes are far more expensive now than they were a year ago. In fact, home values are up 6% from the previous year, according to data firm CoreLogic, and many buyers face bidding

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With Archway Homes, selling your home ‘as is’ never felt so good.


When it comes to buying and selling homes, husband and wife team Jon and Stacy Bichelmeyer with Archway Homes can buy your property in as little as three days or the date of your choice.

Today we are in a social and economic climate like none ever experienced before. Our priorities and needs are changing day by day. At Archway Homes, we realize that the almost instant upheaval in our lives may be leading us to make decisions we might not have considered last month or even last week. Archway Homes can help sellers who want or need to sell a home without going through the often drawn out and sometimes painful traditional selling process. Real estate investors Jon and Stacy Bichelmeyer, owners of Archway Homes, buy homes in any condition. They have been buying and selling properties in the greater Kansas City area for over 20 years,

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Is the Fall a Good Time to Buy a House? This Year, Things Have Changed.

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for sale sign


Coronavirus sent the U.S. housing market for a spin this summer as demand outstripped supply—and the highly competitive environment appears to have continued into the fall.

“Normally, this last week of September is sort of a buyers’ sweet spot,”
Danielle Hale
, chief economist at Realtor.com, told Barron’s. In a typical year, September is when buyer demand decreases as home listings remain on the market, resulting in more options and less competition, she said.

But that was not the case this year. Homes spent an average of 54 days on the market nationally in September, 12 fewer days than the same month last year and three fewer than in August 2020, according to a Realtor.com study. That’s an unusual occurrence during a month when market activity normally begins to slow. This was the first year since at least 2016 when homes spent less

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Journal Times editorial — Good news: Teen vaping shows a significant decline | Editorial

Lost in the never-ending reports of COVID-19 deaths, hospitalizations and new cases was a nugget of good news: vaping by U.S. teenagers fell dramatically, especially among middle schoolers.

The national survey by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that just under 20 percent of high schoolers and 5 percent of middle schoolers said they were recent users of electronic cigarettes and other vaping products.

That’s a significant decline from last year when the survey posted numbers of 28 percent for high schoolers and 11 percent for middle schoolers.

By any mark, that’s progress. The CDC said the survey suggests that nationwide the number of school-age children who vape fell by 1.8 million – from 5.4 million to 3.6 million – which indicates there is still work to do.

While teen use declined, experts said there appears to be a bump in the use of disposable e-cigarettes. According to

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City spends $1M on air filters for Syracuse schools; more top stories (Good Morning CNY for Sept. 29)

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High: 64; Low: 53. Cooler with periods of rain.

Photo of the Day

WANT TO BUY A LANDMARK TIPP HILL BAR? HERE’S YOUR CHANCE: George O’Dea’s, the self-proclaimed “old guys” bar at one of the oddest intersections on Syracuse’s Tipperary Hill, is closed and the building is up for sale. It’s been closed since St. Patrick’s Day (March 17) — the first day of the initial coronavirus bar-and-restaurant shutdown.It wasn’t strictly the coronavirus that closed O’Dea’s, though. (Don Cazentre photo)

What’s Trending

Family: Slain Canastota woman was trying to leave abusive marriage: Elizabeth “Lizzie” Garrow, a pregnant 19-year-old mother, was found dead Sunday, four days after she went missing in Canastota. Now, Garrow’s family talks about their loved one, her whirlwind marriage and the abuse they say

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Some renters need to be evicted, so that good renters can have the homes they deserve

I am a small passive investor in working-class apartment communities, Class B and C. This is affordable housing with rents ranging from $750 to $1,400. A syndicator pools our funds, buys a run-down apartment community and rehabs it, creating good, clean, safe, affordable housing for working-class families. Our motto is “Best Product, Best Price.”

Our syndicators work closely with honest residents, helping them to find local rent subsidies, deferring rent payments, and otherwise working with them in this time of crisis. But there are residents whose evictions have nothing to do with COVID-19, and we must be allowed to evict them.

It is critically important that government officials, politicians and religious leaders rushing to create eviction moratoriums understand the challenges our syndicators face and why evictions are sometimes necessary. Our syndicators provide monthly reports and financials. Here is a tale told by one such syndicator in his monthly reports and

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Buying a home? Good luck. Prices soared 14 percent last month

The region’s housing market surged in August, with prices for single-family homes both statewide and in Greater Boston leaping by double digits compared with the same month last year.

Fueled by strong demand — despite the pandemic-induced recession — coupled with a severe shortage of properties for sale, prices for single-family homes jumped 14 percent to a record-high median of $480,000, according to Boston real estate data firm The Warren Group. Condominium prices climbed 5.9 percent, to $425,000.

The dramatic increases came as the number of homes listed for sale in Greater Boston dropped by 23 percent compared with last August, according to data from the Greater Boston Association of Realtors. Many would-be sellers have decided to stay put this spring and summer, real estate agents say, even as cooped-up renters are looking for places to buy and spread out a bit.

That supply-and-demand imbalance, along with a delayed selling

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