Homes

Published September 16, 2015

METRO DETROIT — The Michigan State Housing Development Authority recently announced nine steps for a smooth transition into a new home for first-time homebuyers through its MI First Home program.


MSHDA spokesman Darren Montreuil said the nonprofit organization is bolstering its efforts to educate individuals on the whole process, including factors besides the mortgage purchase, so they remain on budget and do not miss key opportunities.

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Published September 9, 2015

C&G Newspapers

METRO DETROIT — After a strong summer, the housing market in metro Detroit shows no signs of regressing heading into the fall, although buyers and sellers both could take extra precautions in getting in or out of a house.


For the buyer, real estate agent Jan Hays, with Max Broock in Birmingham, said the market will still look to be a sellers market in the fall, so buyers should be ready to make a bid when going to look at a house and not be afraid to make the call.

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Published September 2, 2015

WARREN — It seems like only yesterday that we were worried about protecting our tender tomato plants from frost, thinning rows of lettuce and carrots, and getting our annuals in the ground before Memorial Day. 


But alas, the days are growing shorter and the nights are getting cooler as the calendar flips from August to September. For some, that means it’s time to plant again. For others, it’s time to maintain.

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Published August 26, 2015

METRO DETROIT — With a new school year approaching, it’s time to get back into the groove of studying and doing homework.


Several local educators have offered tips to help create the ideal workspace for students to do their homework at home.


A number of Macomb County educators through the Macomb Intermediate School District suggested that students should have a consistent place to study that the student and family members agree upon. That could be the bedroom, kitchen, basement or home office area.

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Published August 19, 2015

METRO DETROIT — Farmington Hills resident Chris Britts’ green thumb blossomed as a child growing up in Albuquerque, New Mexico, with her mother in their garden at home.

“I did things with her, and every place we’ve lived, I’ve worked on plants one way or another,” the 71-year-old said, adding that her English grandfather instilled a love of gardening in her mother.

The longtime Farmington Hills resident said that her love of gardening has come with highs and lows, such as nature’s pets munching on her plants.

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Published August 12, 2015

METRO DETROIT — Several local development companies are repurposing the large, stackable steel crates used to ship goods around the world for the quick construction of living quarters.


In Detroit, Three Squared Inc. is developing condominium complexes out of shipping containers, and ModEco Development LLC is finishing a single home out of shipping containers on Rochester Road, south of 12 Mile Road, in Royal Oak.

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Published August 5, 2015

C&G Newspapers

METRO DETROIT — While people have been told for years that they can help conserve water by turning off running sinks and taking shorter showers, new technology is combining with old techniques to provide residents with additional measures they can take around the home.

Water shortages and restrictions are not the issue here that they are in the American Southwest, but some of the things developed there can be — and have been — exported to other parts of the country.

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Published July 29, 2015

C&G Newspapers

METRO DETROIT — With some of the most popular weeks for American travel upon us, local law enforcement agencies say there are simple steps to take to protect your home and property while you are away.


St. Clair Shores Police Lt. David Centala said that, while putting lights on timers inside your home and making sure the outside of your home is illuminated is always a good idea, 99 percent of home invasions actually occur during the day.

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Published July 22, 2015

C&G Newspapers

METRO DETROIT — Things were going so well.


You started your seeds on time indoors or had luck finding gorgeous heirloom plants at the local greenhouse. Everything went into the ground on schedule, and the plants really took off when the weather turned from late spring to early summer.


But now the leaves of your once-lush cucumbers are yellow and brown. Your zucchini is turning to dust. Your cabbage and broccoli plants look like Swiss cheese.

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Published July 15, 2015

C&G Newspapers

METRO DETROIT — ’Tis the season for summer and fall home repairs.


But as homeowners work rapidly to complete projects before the winter months, scam contractors might slip right under their noses.

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Published July 8, 2015

C&G Newspapers

METRO DETROIT — When disaster strikes a home in the form of a fire, storm damage, flooding or unforeseen reconstruction needs, the damage needs to be addressed immediately.


Lt. Scott Trumbo, of the Shelby Township Police Department, said that if the emergency situation requires immediate utility shutoffs, first responders contact the appropriate utility company to mitigate the hazardous conditions.

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Published June 30, 2015

With summer heating up, local experts offered advice to save money on energy bills by maximizing efficiency in the home.

“There’s a lot of very simple measures to be more energy-efficient that don’t have to cost a lot of money,” Consumers Energy spokeswoman Deb Dodd said. “You don’t necessarily have to buy new windows or (energy-efficient appliances).”

One measure, Dodd said, is a programmable thermostat, which can reduce air conditioning costs while a home is unoccupied.

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Published June 24, 2015

C&G Newspapers

METRO DETROIT — The housing market in metro Detroit is still flooded with buyers and sellers, but things may get a little more difficult for sellers as interest rates have started trending upward and more buyers are looking to get into new builds.


Keller Williams real estate agent John Kurczak, based in Sterling Heights, said that just as things have changed in the types of homes that buyers are looking at, so too has the way that homes are sold.

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Published June 17, 2015

C&G Newspapers

METRO DETROIT — The flooring scene has changed drastically in the last few years, according to flooring experts in the area.


New types of flooring are available, such as luxury vinyl, which can resemble any other type of floor. And other timeless types of flooring, such as hardwood and carpet, have advanced leaps and bounds in terms of stability, finishes, style and softness.


Matt Pfeiffer, owner of Northern Flooring in Lake Orion, said that hardwood is the No. 1 type of flooring in Michigan and the best investment in terms of resale factor.

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Published June 10, 2015

C&G Newspapers

METRO DETROIT — It’s time to let your light shine — in your home, that is.


We all have many lighting styles in our homes: table lamps, under-cabinet lights, and even the tuxedo of lights: chandeliers.


But what kinds of lighting work best for your abode?


Corie Conroy, owner of Bloomfield Hills-based First Impression Home Staging and Interior Design, said different lighting packs a unique punch in your home, like bedroom table lighting that creates a calming feel.

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Published June 3, 2015

METRO DETROIT — It may not be the sexiest topic when discussing a kitchen or bathroom remodel, but sinks have come a long way from function to fabulous.


Gone are the days when a divided sink was necessary. Multiple local experts agree that bigger is better when choosing a kitchen basin.

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Published May 27, 2015

METRO DETROIT — Looking to create plush, peaceful outdoor spaces that also pop?


For The Great Outdoors program held at the Michigan Design Center May 14, interior designer Paul Feiten transformed the MDC’s lobby in Troy into virtual outdoor space that he said was inspired by a European veranda.

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Published May 13, 2015

METRO DETROIT — For both the interiors and exteriors of homes, customers are opting to go back to classic color schemes and neutrals, according to experts in the field.


The return to basics is, in some cases, a nostalgic choice and, in other cases, a more strategic move to increase home value and appeal to a wider audience.

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Published May 6, 2015

METRO DETROIT — Embarking on the search for a new home can be daunting, especially for first-time buyers, so C & G Newspapers asked several experts, including real estate agents and a representative from the Michigan State Housing Development Authority, for guidance.


John Kurczak, a Keller Williams Realtor, said the best way to start is to find out what you can afford.

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Published April 29, 2015

Walking into a home without wall art would be almost as jarring as stepping inside an observatory and seeing no telescopes, or eating at a Mexican restaurant and not being served chips and salsa.

People sense the ambiance when standing inside a building. And no matter what the setting is or what is taking place in that particular environment, people often expect to see aesthetically pleasing and visually stimulating art.

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