Whether you are looking to sell your Scottsdale home or plan to stay in it for years to come, most homeowners have a running list of projects in mind with the hopes of increasing the appeal, comfort, and value of their Scottsdale home. Regardless of whether you live in a charming old century home or a sleek modern one, there are plenty of ways to improve the value of your Scottsdale home with a wide range of cost and knowledge required to get the job done.

6 Ways for Improving Your Scottsdale Home Value

Improve the value of your Scottsdale home with some or all of these tips

Remodel the Kitchen

Most real estate agents agree that a kitchen remodel is one of the best ways to increase the value of your Scottsdale home. Remodeling your kitchen may seem like an overwhelming task, but if your budget is limited, start small and work in segments. Consider starting by replacing appliances and adding a new colorful back splash. These are things that can be done with little or no experience in the home improvement business.

Freshen Up the Bathroom

No one likes an old dingy bathroom. If you don't feel the need to, or don't have the funds to do a full remodel, a fresh coat of paint and new rugs and shower curtain can really put a new face on an old bathroom. Take some time to organize and de-clutter. You may want to add some new shelves and mirrors to open up the space.

New Flooring

Hardwood flooring is by far the most popular choice among current home owners. It's easier to maintain and more durable. If cost is a prohibiting factor, laminate flooring or engineered wood looks nice and costs less than real wood flooring.

Replace/Update Windows

New windows will save you money on energy costs and increase the beauty and updated look of your Scottsdale home from the inside out. Find a contractor or a window installation company you trust to help you choose the right windows. Whether you are going for a more classic wooden window look or a sleek modern style, new windows can help you achieve your desired look, but it's probably not a job for the do-it-yourselfer.

Paint

A fresh coat of paint for the interior and exterior of your Scottsdale home is the cheapest way to increase the value of your home. If you are planning to sell, stick with a somewhat neutral color scheme.

Keep Up With Yard Work

Last, but certainly not least, remember that a well groomed yard has significantly more curb appeal than one that is unkept. Simple things like keeping your lawn mowed and flower beds well weeded will greatly increase the appeal of your home. Add some flowers or plants and fresh mulch for a bit of extra color.

We have more tips for home improvements under our Scottsdale Home Improvements section just below our Scottsdale Real Estate Categories in the column to your right.

Remember, we also post daily on our Facebook Page, and over at Twitter. We'd love you to check us out there too.

Average Scottsdale mortgage rates followed 10-year Treasury yields higher and rose for the third consecutive week last week. At 3.85%, the average 30-year fixed-rate Scottsdale mortgage rate is just below the high for 2015.

The 15-year fixed Scottsdale mortgage rates averaged 3.07% with an average 0.6 point last week, up from the previous week when it averaged 3.02%. A year ago at this time, the 15-year fixed rate mortgage averaged 3.29%.

Higher Scottsdale Mortgage Rates Mean Less House

Scottsdale mortgage rates continued to inch upward for the third week in a row.

Higher Scottsdale mortgage rates will mean more expensive mortgages and less house. Right now, the 30-year mortgage costs nearly a half-percent cheaper than the same mortgage cost a year ago, and more than a full point cheaper than mortgages cost five years ago. If you agree with (almost literally) everyone else that interest rates will rise over the next 12 months, the time to lock in a low rate is now.

The 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage averaged 2.89% last week with an average 0.5 point, down from the previous week when it averaged 2.90%. A year ago, the 5-year Adjustable rate mortgage averaged 3.01%.

The 1-year Treasury-indexed adjustable rate mortgage averaged 2.48% last week with an average 0.4 point, up from the previous week when it averaged 2.46%. At this time last year, the 1-year ARM averaged 2.43%.

The labor market continues to improve with the U.S. economy adding 223,000 jobs in April, a solid rebound from merely 85,000 job gains in March. Also, the unemployment rate dipped to 5.4% in April as the participation rate ticked up to 62.8% and jobless claims were far less than expected.

Pending sales of existing homes in March rose 1.1 percent, according to the National Association of Realtors. The median price of an existing home nationwide was up 7.8 percent from a year earlier.

With just about everyone agreeing that Scottsdale mortgage rates are moving higher, there's simply no time like the present to get started looking for a Scottsdale home.

Get more information as it pertains to Scottsdale mortgage rates in our section on Scottsdale Mortgage Info to your right under Scottsdale Real Estate Categories.

Remember, we also post tips daily on Twitter and Facebook. Check us out there as well.

With Scottsdale real estate bidding wars starting to heat up with the coming of the spring buying season, it's more important than ever to get your ducks in a row before you start submitting offers on any Scottsdale real estate. Diana Olick covers six ways to win a home bidding war in this red hot housing market…

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Scottsdale Real Estate Prices Continue to Rise

Because interest rates are still hovering near all time record lows, it's a good time to get into the market before those rates start to rise as everyone is forecasting them to do. But as Scottsdale real estate prices keep rising, and then when rates start to rise, home buyers will have to settle for a lot less house for the same monthly payment later versus what they can get now, IF they have good enough credit to qualify.
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The Scottsdale real estate buying process doesn't have to be ugly or adversarial. You and the seller are both trying to come to an agreement that will make the transaction a success for both of you. If the Scottsdale home you're making an offer on is the one you feel is 100 percent right for you, make it clear you want to get the deal done. Follow the pointers Diana listed in the video in order for the deal to happen. The savings from a successful real estate negotiation are well worth the time and effort you’ll commit.
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Don't forget, we post tips daily on Twitter and Facebook, sometimes pertaining directly to Scottsdale real estate and home buying tips, including other ways to negotiate prices. Find us there as well.
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Scottsdale homeowners insurance is something many home buyers don't have first and foremost on their minds when thinking of buying a new home, but your Scottsdale homeowners insurance could add up to a major expense  if you don't keep some things in mind.

Depending on your 'up front' rate, there are some things that could make your Scottsdale homeowners insurance rate rise in the future to become a major expense. With added risks, homeowners should take action to do all they can to prevent home insurance from spiraling out of control.

Here are some tips to avoid higher Scottsdale homeowners insurance costs in the future…

Keeping Scottsdale Homeowners Insurance Rate Increases to a Minimum

Scottsdale homeowners insurance rates will be affected by adding a swimming pool to your home.

Rethink certain home additions – Although adding a new feature to the home like a swimming pool seems like a great way to boost the home's value and fun at the same time, adding on a pool may increase your Scottsdale homeowners insurance. Attractions like swimming pools will likely lead to a greater chance that someone will be involved in an accident and having a liability claim could result in higher insurance rates.

Keep credit accounts current – Lenders usually look at credit scores to calculate Scottsdale homeowners insurance rates and if homeowners do not keep their accounts in good standing, this could mean elevated rates. Make sure to pay credit obligations on time, avoid unnecessary debt and do not close older accounts to keep credit scores high.

Choose your next home's location carefully – Scottsdale homeowners insurance costs could be lower by moving to homes that are relatively new. House hunters should look for houses that have electrical, heating and plumbing systems that are less than 10 years old. There are also certain safety features near homes that could make a difference, such as, if a fire hydrant is close to the property. Prospective homeowners looking to find a home that could reduce their Scottsdale homeowners insurance costs can contact us to learn more about finding a home with potentially lower insurance costs.

Find more articles pertaining to saving money on your insurance costs under our Scottsdale Insurance Info to your right under Scottsdale Real Estate Categories.

We also post tips on Facebook and Twitter. Follow us there for many other insurance related tips as well.

Existing Scottsdale home sales are expected to finish the year at their highest level since 2006 according to the National Association of Realtors’ economic forecast forum revealed at its 2015 Legislative Meetings & Trade Expo.

However, accelerating price growth and rising mortgage rates have the potential to change the expected finish.

Existing Scottsdale home sales are expected to hit their highest level since 2006 by the end of 2015

In the most recent existing-homes sales report, sales surged to their highest annual rate in 18 months, showing a promising beginning to the spring homebuying season.

Nationwide, total existing-home sales, which are completed transactions that include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops, jumped 6.1% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.19 million in March from 4.89 million in February — the highest annual rate since September 2013 (also 5.19 million).

What's Driving Scottsdale Home Sales?

Sustained job growth and interest rates below 4% have been the catalyst behind the improvement in Scottsdale home sales where supply needs to increase measurably to meet the pent-up demand for buying.

Unlike the existing Scottsdale home sales market, demand for single-family new home construction remains weak, and the homebuilding industry is acting accordingly by focusing on multifamily rental housing. New home construction for first-time buyers is about half of the long-term average and the reason is simple: the decline in homeownership and marriage rates among young adults. Things are not projected to return to normal levels for the building market until at least 2017.

Get more news regarding Scottsdale home sales and the trends affecting those sales in our Scottsdale Real Estate News section below our Scottsdale Real Estate Categories in the column to your right.

Remember, we also post daily on our Facebook Page, and over at Twitter. We'd love you to check us out there too.