Richard Stein – Realtor®, Douglas Elliman, GREEN, SFR, CBR, eCertified®

Local Agent, Worldwide Marketing – Douglas Elliman Real Estate formerly Prudential Douglas Elliman Real Estate

4 Ways to ‘Fireproof’ a House

More than 1,000 structures and 260,000 acres across Southern California have been charred since massive wildfires broke out earlier this month. With the blazes still threatening 25,000 more homes, is there anything homeowners can do to protect their houses from a fire? You may not be able to fireproof a home completely, but building experts say there are several measures homeowners can take to lower the risks of sustaining damage.® offers these tips:

Read more: California in Housing Hell as Wildfires Rage On

Take extreme caution with eucalyptus trees. The oil in eucalyptus trees—which are common in Southern California—is highly flammable and can cause the trees to explode when on fire, warns Los Angeles real estate developer Tyler Drew. He says homeowners should remove these and other large trees near a home’s structure to help prevent fires from spreading to the house.

Keep your yard clear of brush. Bushes, shrubs, dead branches, and vegetation near a home can be dangerous in a wildfire. “Clear brush away from your home, especially if you live in the hills or mountains,” Drew says. “At least 20 yards of brush clearance is what is recommended by most firefighters.”

Reinforce susceptible materials in a home. A house made of wood is more prone to catching fire than homes made from other materials, such as brick, cement block, stone, and ceramic tile, Drew says. “Stucco can work,” he notes, “but the wood beams behind stucco can still catch on fire if the wildfire burns close enough to your home.”

Replace the roof. Certain roofs are more resistant to falling embers and ash than others. “Tile and composite roofing shingles are a must these days, but some homes still use wooden shingles,” Drew says.

Source: “Exploding Trees? 5 Shockers That Can Make a House Catch Fire,”® (Dec. 14, 2017)

Here’s how the tax bill will impact housing

By Jeff Andrews

Getty Images

Congressional Republicans unveiled the final version of their tax reform bill on Friday, and while the more-austere housing measures present in the House bill are absent in the one Trump will likely to sign before the end of the year, the bill stands to reduce affordable housing construction and weaken or negate many tax deductions related to owning a house.

The bill retains……………………………….


Full story at CURBED



Planning To Buy A Home? 5 Things To Know About The 2018 Housing Market

Omri Barzilay

Are you thinking about buying a home in 2018? You’re not alone. Across the country, lots of people are trying to decide whether to make that leap into homeownership next year. So, since 2017 is coming to a close, we decided to write up our thoughts on where the housing market stands today and what you should look for in 2018, in collaboration with Unison Home Ownership Investors. Our analysis is based on the 2017 Unison Investment Management report. Keep reading for an overview of the top five things you need to know about the housing market in 2018.

1. U.S. Home Price Trends

It’s been a good decade for home prices. After the housing market crash that started in 2008, we’ve seen a steady climb, with some markets rising faster than others. Over the last two years, home prices have been…………………………………

Full story at Forbes

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