Hood Canal Real Estate – US Home Construction Up – www.hoodcanalliving.com

Hood Canal Real Estate, Mortgage and the Economy - hoodcanalliving.com
WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S home construction surged in April to its highest pace in six months. But almost all that increase came from the volatile apartment sector, a sign that Americans are still struggling financially to buy single-family homes.
The Commerce Department says builders started work on 1.07 million homes at a seasonally adjusted annual rate in April, up 13.2 percent from 947,000 in March. The gains were driven by a 42.9 percent jump in the construction of apartments and condominiums. The rate of building single-family homes rose just 0.8 percent.
Most of the gains in multi-family housing were concentrated in the Northeast and Midwest, regions that are bouncing back from the harsh winter.
Applications for building permits, a gauge of future activity, rose 8 percent to an annual rate of 1.08 million.
Hood Canal Real Estate, Mortgage and the Economy - hoodcanalliving.com

Hood Canal Real Estate – Showers Are In, Bath’s are Out!

Hood Canal Real Estate, Mortgage, and the Economy - www.hoodcanalliving.com

The shower gets more use than the bathtub in many households. That’s why some homeowners are ripping out their tubs completely, creating bigger showers instead.
Extra shower space allows for multiple shower heads, a built-in seat and designs without shower doors, said John Petrie, president of the National Kitchen and Bath Association, in an email interview about current kitchen and bath trends. They can be designed without a threshold — which look more contemporary and are easier for people to use as they get older.
“People really like the bigger showers. They like that there’s elbow room,” said Susie Johnson, a real-estate agent with Coldwell Banker Gundaker in St. Louis. Meanwhile, comments she hears from prospective buyers about whirlpool tubs when walking through a property are often along the lines of: “That’s a nice tub but I don’t take baths,” she said.

LED bulbs: what to know before you buy

Energy-efficient LED light bulbs have gotten brighter and warmer since the early days of this technology. The best bulbs, although pricey, make colors pop in a way that incandescents can’t.
Now, keep in mind that a home should still have at least one bathtub, Johnson added. Having a tub will be important at resale for some buyers, particularly those with small children. For high-end homes, buyers expect a shower and a separate bathtub, especially in the master bath, she said.
One other possible consideration before ripping out a bathtub is how it will be viewed by multiple-listing services when you’re selling the home. Realtor.com, for example, defines a “full bathroom” as having a toilet, a sink and a bathtub. A room with a toilet, sink and shower is a “three-quarter bathroom.” A room with only a toilet and sink is defined as a “half bathroom” or “powder room.”
Hood Canal Real Estate, Mortgage, and the Economy - www.hoodcanalliving.com