Burnin’ Up! This Week’s Most Popular Home Was Truly on Fire

An enterprising agent named Dylan Jaeck wanted everyone to check out the smokin’ deal he had on sale—an empty lot in Florida where a home had burned to the ground.

So instead of the customary shots of the vacant lot and its location, he used photos from the actual house fire. And the internet took notice, making it this week’s most popular property on realtor.com®.

Jaeck told us that his blazingly brilliant idea worked as he had expected it would, and now the property is under contract for close to the asking price.

Here are just a couple of the social media reactions to the photos:

Can’t stop thinking about this https://t.co/5VSQFJXike listing of a house for 100k that is literally on fire pic.twitter.com/vuA8hoGAGX

— Hayley Phillips (@somecallmehay) July 31, 2019

Hot listing: Florida house hits market with a photo of the place on fire https://t.co/arzytT3YfJ pic.twitter.com/NRpg46x0fi

— Cristina Alves (@__cristinaalves) August 4, 2019

“I wanted something that would grab somebody’s attention and show how hot of a deal this was for a potential investor to build a home or to fix,” Jaeck says.

His wasn’t the only home to crack our list thanks to attention-grabbing photos. A Virginia home also went viral using the tried-and-true T. rex costume concept. That home is also now pending sale.

Other popular properties this week included a massive, $75 million Beverly Hills megamansion, Phil Kessel’s strangely barren mansion near Pittsburgh, and a wildly decorated Victorian in Scranton, PA.

See all of the homes HERE

Farm Turned Rustic-Chic Wedding Venue Is the Week’s Most Popular Home

Hang the twinkling lights, break out the flower crowns, and don’t forget the Mason jar candle holders, because a Pinterest-perfect farmhouse wedding venue is this week’s most popular home on realtor.com®. The meticulously manicured 10-acre spread is a romantic spot tailor-made for a party—and Instagram. Hashtags not included.

On the market for $695,000, the Michigan property provides a turn-key wedding barn, reception hall, outdoor bar, and fire pit. There’s also a five-bedroom main house that’s ideal for the future proprietor of this clickworthy business opportunity.

Other properties you clicked on this week include a massive castle built by an oral surgeon in Wisconsin over the course of a decade, a classic SoCal home that was the scene of a notorious murder, and an over-the-top decor explosion in Detroit still awaiting a buyer.

It’s been a week of style-forward searches—all of this week’s most popular homes have their own distinct aesthetic and point of view. Strike a pose and have a look… See all 10 of the homes HERE!

Is This the Skinniest Home in the U.S.? Check Out This Week’s Most Popular House

An extremely skinny New York home is this week’s most popular property on realtor.com®. The svelte and tiny home was built during the Great Depression, with sheer ingenuity and the kindness of neighbors.

After losing his home and his business, Nathan Seely was given a 1,200-square-foot plot of land by his neighbor Panfilo Santangelo in Mamaroneck, NY in 1932. Seely, who is reputed to be one of New York’s first African-American home builders, created something unforgettable—even beautiful—on the tiny plot of land.

Using recycled materials, including chicken coops and railroad ties, Seely built a home and a piece of history that’s been lovingly maintained and updated by the Seely and Santangelo families ever since.

On the market for $275,000, the slim structure has also achieved historic recognition. The Skinny House in Mamaroneck was placed on the National Registry of Historic Places in 2015.

The same renegade spirit runs throughout this week’s list of most searched properties—nearly all of them are one-of-a-kind places created by people with dreams of living somewhere special.

There’s a modern masterpiece built on the bluffs of the Mississippi River for wildlife viewing, then there are seasonal cabins and cottages steeped in nature, as well as country homes ringed by ancient trees. For good measure, our list even includes an oceanfront mansion that once belonged to one of America’s true heroes, Ruth Wakefield, inventor of the chocolate chip cookie.

So pour a glass of milk and chomp your way through the entire list of this week’s most popular homes…

See the homes HERE!

California Ranch Bigger Than San Francisco Hits Market for $72 Million

A working ranch larger than the city of San Francisco is asking $72 million. The property, just 40 miles from Oakland, is believed to be the largest piece of land for sale in the state of California, according to the listing agent.

At 50,500 acres, the property accommodates up to 1,500 cow and calf pairs. The right buyer is someone who “wants to relive the Old West,” said listing agent Todd Renfrew of California Outdoor Properties.

The N3 Cattle Company ranch has been in the same family for about 85 years and spans four counties, including Santa Clara County, Alameda County, San Joaquin County and Stanislaus County.

It has a diverse terrain that includes watersheds, creeks, steep canyons, woodlands, meadows, ponds and rock outcroppings, and it is sprinkled with hunting cabins, Mr. Renfrew said. At its high point, the ranch has an elevation of about 4,000 feet. The main house is a low-slung four-bedroom home, and there are four cabins used for employee housing.

The property also includes 200 miles of private roads for hiking, trail-running, mountain biking and all-terrain vehicles.

The sellers are sisters and fourth-generation ranchers Sandra Naftzger and Natalie Naftzger Davis. Their family has been cattle ranching for 135 years in Arizona, California and Oregon, Sandra Naftzger said. The original parcels for the California ranch were purchased in the 1930s and 1940s by their grandmother, and their father, Roy Edgar “Ted” Naftzger, Jr., expanded it significantly through the 1980s.

The sisters spent much of their childhood on the ranch, Sandra Naftzger said, and have been operating the property for the last 20 years. “My father was all business,” she added. “We were always taught to be respectful of the cattle operation. We’d be spending time with the managers and the buckaroos. It takes a village.”

Sandra Naftzger said she and her sister are selling because they are ready to move on.

Original Article

The 10 most affordable beach towns in America

For many Americans, the ultimate summertime fantasy has less to do with washboard abs and a killer tan than owning their own piece of beachfront real estate — aka bliss. From Memorial Day through Labor Day (and beyond), beach lovers across the U.S. find themselves dreaming of escaping the hellish deadlines, soul-sucking commutes, and humdrum daily grind — and trading it all in for salty ocean breezes, caipirinhas on the sand, and fresh lobster rolls from a seafood joint around the corner.

Now just imagine doing it from your very own place.

There’s just one problem: Conventional wisdom suggests that only the seriously loaded can afford to own prime beach–area real estate. But we’re here to tell you that you don’t need seven-figure bank balances to make this sunny reverie into a reality. You just have to find the right beach town, one serving up a magical combo of home affordability and surfy satisfaction.

That’s where the sunburned data team at realtor.com® comes in. As we do every summer, we scoured the U.S.’s 95,471 miles of shoreline to locate the most affordable beach towns in the nation. What we discovered were a sometimes surprising selection of sun-and-sand options that are a lot more financially feasible than a “country cottage” in the Hamptons or Malibu, Calif.

And we never lose sight of a very important fact: A beach home is more than a dream, it’s an investment.

So, what’s the key to avoiding a financial belly-flop of a beach house?

“At the outset, you should have some exit strategy,” says James H. Boykin, author of “Investing in a Vacation Home for Pleasure and Profit.”

In other words, getting into a sweet place with plenty of peace and quiet might be easy. But if you buy in a place that’s not desirable to other beachgoers, you might have a hard time selling or renting it out.

To find America’s most affordable beach towns, our number-crunching ninjas located the country’s biggest metropolitan areas with the highest share of listings with keywords such as “beach,” “beachfront,” and “ocean.” (Metros include an area’s main city and its surrounding suburbs, exurbs, and urban areas.) Then we made sure these markets had lots of fun water-based activities, narrowing our list to the places that boast the highest percentage of things like rafting, kayaking, surfing, boating, and fishing on Yelp.com. We then ranked these metros based on their median prices for the 12-month period of May 2018 to April 2019.

See the 10 cities HERE

Most consumers overestimate what it takes to get a mortgage

Fannie Mae survey reveals widespread lack of mortgage knowledge

When it comes to obtaining a mortgage, the majority of consumers think it requires a higher credit score and larger down payment than is actually necessary, according to a recent survey by Fannie Mae.

Of the 3,647 surveyed consumers, most vastly overestimated the requirements to obtain a mortgage. Specifically, 53% thought a credit score of 650 was required, when many lenders actually allow a score of 580.

And, when asked how much money a borrower is required to put down, 40% said they didn’t know. Of those who did have an idea, they cited 10% as a required minimum, while a number of programs offer as little as 3% down.

Only 23% of respondents were aware of low-down payment programs, up just 1% from three years earlier.

Further, when it came to debt-to-income ratios, consumers were equally confused, with as many as 61% saying they didn’t know – up from 59% three years ago. Of those who did provide a guess, they cited 40% as the required DTI, when many lenders actually approve 50%.

Fannie Mae’s survey also revealed that even those who were preparing to purchase a home in the next few years were only slightly more confident and more knowledgeable than the rest.

“The lack of mortgage qualification understanding is pervasive, even among current homeowners, those who say they are actively planning to purchase a home in the next three years, and those who successfully answered questions testing general financial literacy,” the researchers wrote.

Original Article

1876 Flour Mill Converted to a Modern Dwelling Is This Week’s Most Popular Home

A flour mill magically transformed into a modern, rustic-chic sanctuary is the week’s most popular home on realtor.com®.

Built in 1876 and perched on the banks of the Raritan River, the Neshanic Mill is a local landmark in Hillsborough Township, NJ. It even graces the “Welcome to Hillsborough” sign at the edge of town.

If the popularity of the listing is any indication, there are plenty of buyers interested in scrounging up enough grist to make an offer.

The old mill bested pretty stiff competition this week. “Real Housewives of New York” fan favorite Ramona Singer dropped the price on her NYC pad and seems to have found a buyer. Another “Real Housewife”—this one from Potomac, NJ—is attached to a popular home reportedly being sold by her estranged husband.

Besides these notable names, this week’s list includes several gawkworthy properties including a luxe waterfront San Diego beach house and a time capsule midcentury bed-and-breakfast in Texas—with all the furnishings included.

But despite fame, flash, and notoriety, it’s the little flour mill from the 1870s that ground the competition into dust. Have a look at all this week’s most popular properties by scrolling on down…

See the homes here!