Move Over, Solar Panels! Home Wind Turbines Are the Latest Green Energy Source for Homeowners

Wind power is one of the most popular forms of renewable energy, and in some parts of the country, you can drive by huge fields of turbines with their fanlike blades. Home wind turbines, like solar panels, capture energy and help lower your electricity bill. But can this clean fuel source actually power your entire house? And if so, at what cost?

How do home wind turbines work?

If you’ve ever seen a wind farm, you already have a general idea of what the turbines look like when they’re operating. But how exactly do they work?

“They convert the kinetic energy in wind into mechanical power, which in turn is used to run a generator that makes electricity for the home,” says Dan DiClerico, a home expert at HomeAdvisor. The turbine’s long, narrow blades are aerodynamically designed to capture the maximum energy from the wind.

“As the blades rotate, they turn a shaft that is connected to a generator, which produces electricity that is delivered directly to the home,” he explains.

Are home wind turbines practical?

Residential wind turbines are a good option if you live in an area with consistent wind flow—but not gale-force winds, which would cause the National Weather Service to issue a wind advisory.

“Wind turbines operate within a range of wind speeds, below which they do not produce power and above which they will cut out to protect themselves from damage,” says Michael Ginsberg, author of “Harness It: Renewable Energy Technologies and Project Development Models Transforming the Grid.”

So, what’s a good wind speed range? Typically, 8 to 55 mph.

“The rated power output of the wind turbine is based on the rated speed, usually 25 mph to 35 mph,” Ginsberg says.

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How Much Home Insurance Do I Need? What Every Homeowner Should Know About Their Coverage

Have you ever wondered, “How much home insurance do I need?” Well, you might, especially when you’re faced with a lengthy list of policy options from your insurance agent. Do you really need all that coverage?

On average, at least 6% of homeowners make a claim to their home insurance company each year. This might not seem like many, but those claims are far from small. The Insurance Information Institute estimates that insurers paid out an average of $10,592 to homeowners last year, covering everything from fire and lightning damage to theft.

Choosing the right level of insurance is key—if you don’t buy enough, you’ll be out of pocket for any shortfall. Buy too much, and you’ll be paying for coverage you don’t need.

Here’s how to make sure your major costs are covered in case of an emergency, and why taking a close look at your policy can save you money and heartbreak down the road.

So really, how much home insurance do I need?

The goal of any home insurance policy is to ensure you’re covered in case of a total loss of your home, says Ralph DiBugnara, president of Home Qualified.

“This means if the home was destroyed, the policy will cover the cost to completely rebuild it to the exact condition of when it was insured,” DiBugnara explains.

If you have a mortgage on your home, your lender will likely require your coverage to equal 100% of the replacement cost of the home. And even if your home is paid off—or no requirement is in place—it’s still a good idea to buy enough coverage to cover complete replacement, DiBugnara says.

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The Week’s Most Popular Home Is a Mansion That’s Never Been Lived In—and You Won’t Believe Why

An art-stuffed mansion in Illinois is this week’s most popular home on realtor.com®. And as if its 9,721 square feet of extreme opulence weren’t enough, the enormous residence comes complete with a shocking twist.

Built in 2002, the $2.9 million home has been used exclusively to house the owners’ extensive art collection—and has never been lived in. Two decades later, it’s like buying a brand-new home.

The odd backstory and colorful art in the home’s listing photos make the place extremely clickworthy. Loaded with paintings, sculptures, and objets d’art, the interiors look otherwise untouched since the home was built 18 years ago.

For a buyer interested in breaking into the art market, any of the art inside or outside the home is available for negotiation, separately from the purchase price.

Aside from the mansion-museum, other homes you clicked on this week included the lovingly restored Baywood mansion in Pittsburgh, a hulking Victorian sitting on the Mississippi River Delta, and the architecturally significant Goodkind residence in Minnesota—all antiques in search of new owners to usher them into the future.

As you ponder the logistics of purchasing a mansion simply to house your art collection, we ask you to cast aside those dreams for a few moments and scroll down to peruse all of this week’s popular homes…

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Kiplinger’s Economic Outlook for All 50 States, 2020

Low jobless rates and rising incomes are helping to fatten state coffers across the U.S. Revenue from sales, personal and corporate taxes is on the rise –the best growth since before the Great Recession.

States can expect healthy tax revenues for at least the next several quarters as low unemployment continues, incomes slowly rise, inflation increases modestly and higher energy prices generate more income for states with severance taxes.

But the outlook for individual states is varied, with several regions facing big challenges. The trade war with China is battering the agriculture industry in the Midwest and the prairie states and crimping activity at Southern ports. Manufacturing is slowing down because slowing global growth is hurting exports. New England’s economy is slowing as employers struggle to find the workers they need.

Although construction spending is up markedly this year, most states won’t boost spending much. As they prepare for 2020, governors and legislatures are eyeing modest spending increases –perhaps reversing cuts made after the Great Recession. They also intend to sock away some of the newfound revenues in rainy-day funds. (See our list of States Most Unprepared for the Next Recession.)

See the breakdown HERE

Bizarre Beverly Hills Estate Owned by Dr. Phil Is the Week’s Most Popular Home

Last week famed TV interventionist Dr. Phil McGraw decided to part with a home he owns in Beverly Hills, CA. And while a notable name selling a pricey property in SoCal isn’t anything we haven’t seen before, it was the home’s daring decor that caught us all a little off guard.

It’s the mansion where the rocker son of the syndicated TV star was living, and it was outfitted to resemble a Tim Burton fever dream, complete with custom artwork, bizarre vine-covered staircase, and, perhaps most puzzlingly, a wall of firearms displayed behind glass in the dining room wall. Photos of the maximalist emo-millionaire frat house spread far and wide across the web, catapulting the property to the top of the most popular homes of the week.

Other homes that caused you to click this week included a gigantic, 47-bedroom Colonial mansion, which was used as a location in the new film “Little Women,” a home from Season 4 of “Fixer Upper,” and two mansions meant for the billionaire set: a 226-acre ranch in Jackson Hole, WY, and the eternally epic Palazzo di Amore in Beverly Hills.

While we wouldn’t dare ask you to explain the decor choices in a home owned by Dr. Phil, we would like you to scroll on down and have a look at all of this week’s most popular homes.

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Best of the Best: The 10 Most Popular Homes of 2019

As we wrap up another fascinating year in real estate, we like to look back on the homes that made you click the most in 2019. We counted allof your clicks to come up with the 10 most popular homes of the year on realtor.com®.

The resulting list ran the gamut. There was the salacious (the sedate suburban home harboring a BDSM dungeon), the hilarious (the lonely chair of NHL star Phil Kessel in the middle of his home theater), and the mind-blowing (a bunker sunk 26 feet beneath Las Vegas).

And, of course, there were A-listers amid the most popular properties. You were extremely interested in Tom Brady‘s mansion in Massachusetts going on the market and the Obama family‘s purchase of a compound on Martha’s Vineyard.

Reality TV also played a role: The Duggars had a tough time unloading their house-flipping project in Arkansas, and one of Chip and Joanna Gaines‘ masterpieces from “Fixer Upper” had trouble attracting a buyer.

However, we don’t think you’ll have any trouble enjoying the homes listed below. After sorting through millions and millions of page views, we can definitively say these were your 10 favorite homes of the year. Scroll on down for the complete list.

See the homes here!

The hottest housing markets of 2020 are far from the coasts

Forget Seattle, Denver and San Francisco. Boise, Idaho, is poised to be the hottest housing market at the start of the next decade.

A new report from Realtor.com identified the housing markets that are expected to see the most notable home sales and price growth in 2020. Boise ranked No. 1, a marked increase from No. 8 a year ago.

Driving Boise’s climb up the Realtor.com ranking is the massive influx of new residents from pricier parts of the country — in particular, California. Many of these out-of-state buyers are drawn by the city’s mild climate, outdoor lifestyle, strong schools and its major employers, including HP HPQ, -0.10%  and Micron Technologies MU, +0.87%.

Boise’s already seen a boom in terms of housing. A recent report from the Federal Housing Finance Agency showed that home prices in the Idaho state capital have risen 11.1% over the last year.

After Boise, McAllen, Texas, and Tucson, Ariz., ranked No. 2 and No. 3 on Realtor.com’s list. McAllen’s affordable home prices, combined with Texas’ favorable tax environment, have made the border city an attractive destination for home buyers looking to move. Tucson, meanwhile, has benefitted from an influx of retirees looking for warm weather and young adults looking to study at the University of Arizona or work for popular companies that have set up shop there like Amazon and Texas Instruments 

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