Biden Housing Secretary Seeks $100B Funding Boost

Marcia Fudge, the Biden administration’s recently confirmed Housing and Urban Development Secretary, has urged lawmakers to top off the department’s budget by as much as $100 billion. So reports Politico.

Fudge also called for Congress to make permanent the majority of housing-related pandemic legislation.

HUD’s annual budget, holding near $55 billion of late, is inadequate to meet the needs of more than 500,000 homeless, fix up deteriorating public housing and remove lead from subsidized housing, Fudge said in a press briefing.

Read the full article from Politico. 

Source: themortgageleader.com

This $3.5M Apartment Was Once Owned by Filmmaker Nancy Dine, Muse of Famed Artist Jim Dine

Perched high over Lincoln Center, overlooking the Hudson River, sits a sophisticated modern apartment with a backstory steeped in local art history. It was home to late Academy Award-nominated filmmaker Nancy Dine who, alongside husband Jim Dine, dominated the local arts scene of the early ’60s and were considered the ultimate art-star power couple at the time. 

During her 40-year marriage to Jim Dine — a prolific, multi-talented contemporary artist — Nancy is said to have re-defined the role of the “artist’s wife”. She appeared in many of his paintings and was all at once his inspiration, assistant, and publicist. She took up filmmaking in her 50s, producing a number of short films, including a documentary on her husband’s life, entitled Jim Dine: A Self-Portrait on the Walls (which was nominated for an Academy Award in 1996).

Her son, Nick Dine, inherited his parents’ artistic inclination and turned it into a prolific career as an interior designer. In fact, he was the one to design Nancy’s bright and spacious Upper West Side apartment, which recently came to market.

Image credit: Brown Harris Stevens

The apartment, listed for $3,495,000 with Brown Harris Stevens’ Susan Silverman and James Foreman, spans 1,650 square feet and is flooded with light thanks to its five oversized west-facing windows. It has 2 bedrooms, 2 full baths, and a 680-square-foot living and dining area, which easily seats 12.

The living area connects to the Bulthaup kitchen, which has a large stainless steel top island, Gaggenau steam and convection ovens, 5 burner cook top, Sub Zero refrigerator with extra freezer and refrigerator drawers plus endless concealed storage.

luxury apartment above lincoln center, in New York
Image credit: Brown Harris Stevens
Image credit: Brown Harris Stevens
luxury kitchen decorated in dark colors and clean lines
Image credit: Brown Harris Stevens

The spacious bedroom suite includes a separate dressing area outfitted with a complete Vitsoe modular storage system with cedar lined walls, plus a large bath. There is a full guest bathroom off the living room as well as a separate home office area bordered by Vitsoe bookcases. The apartment’s layout can accommodate a second bedroom or den.

Image credit: Brown Harris Stevens
luxury-bathroom-with-pink-shower
Image credit: Brown Harris Stevens

The apartment is set in One Lincoln Plaza, a luxury residential building located directly across the street from Lincoln Center, in close proximity to Central Park, Columbus Circle, excellent restaurants, gourmet food shops, and transportation. It is a coveted full service condominium with many amenities including doorman and concierge, covered driveway, attached parking garage with valet service, a dramatic glass enclosed roof fitness room and pool with retractable glass roof, sauna steam, and outdoor sundeck. The building has a newly renovated and landscaped outdoor space, with fire pits on the 8th floor.

More luxury apartments

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See Inside a $5.7M Coco Chanel-Inspired Condo in the Trendy 40 Bleecker Building in NoHo, Manhattan
Trophy Apartment Once Owned by Composer Leonard Bernstein Asks $29.5 Million

Source: fancypantshomes.com

Six Communities for Generation Z

Homes.com’s recent survey of Generation Z, also known as America’s youngest homebuyers with young adults from ages 18 to 24, provides new information on where this new wave of buyers would like to buy and why. Even more massive than the millennial generation, Generation Z promises to shape homebuying trends for years to come.

Our Homes.com survey provided new insights into Generation Z buyers’ priorities. We found that these new buyers prefer communities that offer:

  • Diversity. Prefer neighborhoods and communities that are racially and ethnically diverse;
  • Accessibility. Want a location that is accessible to work as well as to friends and family;
  • Safety. When Gen Z-ers look for new communities, safety is always a top priority.
  • Affordability. Generation Z is very aware of rising home prices that have kept millions of millennials from becoming homeowners,

The survey found that Generation Z-ers want to be homeowners for the same reason that older generations did: to have a place to call home. Being sure that their first home is a good investment and is also pet-friendly ranked high in their list of “wants.”

By combining these insights, we created a matrix to identify six prospective communities for Gen Zers. We are using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, diversity rankings from Wallethub, demographics from NeighborhoodScoutaffordability indices from the National Association of Home Builders, and market data from Homes.com.

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Gaithersburg, Maryland

Located in Montgomery County, Maryland, Gaithersburg is an outlying suburb of Washington D.C. and the fourth largest city in the state, located in the center of Maryland’s high tech and biomedical corridor. It is accessible to downtown D.C. by train, Metro, and auto. With a population of 59,933, it has an unemployment rate of 3.0%, lower than the national average. Professional services and health care account for 30% of its jobs and more than half of its residents have college degrees.

In WalletHub’s diversity ratings, Gaithersburg ranks number one among all small cities in the nation in 2019 and the second among all cities for its ethnic, linguistic, and birthplace diversity. One out of five of its residents are foreign-born, and only 35% of its population is white.

The median home price is high at $350,932, but so are area incomes. Gaithersburg’s median household income was $85,773 in May, much higher than the national median of $57,652. More than half of its residents own their own homes. Gaithersburg is safer than 49 percent of cities, and a resident of Gaithersburg has only one chance in 790 of becoming a victim of a violent crime.

In the high-priced Washington DC market, Gaithersburg is an affordable alternative for Generation Z-ers looking for good values accessible to both the city and the Appalachian countryside.

Aurora, Illinois

Aurora is an outer suburb of Chicago with 200,100 residents. It is the second-most populous city in Illinois. With a long history of manufacturing, Caterpillar is still its largest employer. Between 2016 and 201, its median household income grew from $63,967 to $66,848, a 4.5% increase. Aurora’s unemployment rate is 4.2%, slightly above the U.S. average is 3.9%, and its median household income is $63,569 a year. At 16 crimes per 1000 residents annually, Aurora is safer than 43% of U.S. cities

Aurora’s population is very diverse, with 56% White residents, 42% Hispanic, and 10% African American. In May, SmartAsset ranked Aurora first in the nation for “Living the American Dream.” It ranked high in each of the award’s five metrics: homeownership rate, diversity rate, upward mobility rate, median home value, and unemployment rate. Aurora also ranks fifth on WalletHub’s list of most diverse medium-sized cities.

Aurora’s median home price in May was $230,000, far below the national median of $277,700. Houses are selling in 75 to 80 days, and market conditions are moving from neutral to favoring buyers.

For Midwestern Generation Z-ers looking for the right mix of accessibility and affordability, Aurora could fill the bill.

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Clifton, New Jersey

Clifton is located in Passaic County in northern New Jersey, within commuting distance to New York City. With a population of 86,607 people, Clifton is the eighth largest community in the state.

Clifton is a city of sales and office workers, professionals, and service providers. Ranked sixth in the nation among small cities in Wallethub’s national diversity ratings, Clifton is home to a variety of racial and ethnic groups, according to the New York Times. The greatest number of Clifton residents are White, then followed by Asian, but it also has a sizable Hispanic population, accounting for 37% of the city’s residents. Clifton is a youthful city; the average age is only 38.

Clifton’s median home price is $395,880, about 4% higher than the state average. At $71,830, the median household income in Clifton is 30% higher than the national average. At 3.6%, its unemployment rate equals the national average. Clifton’s crime rate is lower than the state average and it is safer than 37% of U.S. cities.

For Generation Z buyers looking for a suitable location within commuting distance to New York, Clifton is a great option.

Houston, Texas

With a population of more than two million, Houston is the largest community in Texas and the fourth largest in the nation. Its economy is thriving, adding 86,200 new jobs over the past 12 months, trailing only the Greater New York City market and Dallas in job growth. In March 2019, Houston’s unemployment was 3.7%, the lowest level in a decade.

Houston is an ethnically diverse city. Latinos account for 35.3% of the population; Whites account for 24.9%, African Americans are 16.8%, and Asians 6%. Eldridge/West Oaks, Willowbrook, Westchase, and Briar Forest are four of its most diversified neighborhoods.

Houston’s metro crime rate is high, at 4%, but not in safer neighborhoods like Dogwood Acres/Walden Woods, Westheimer Pky/S Ferry Rd, Clodine, and Sandtown Cir/Sandtown Ln.

Houston has one of the nation’s healthiest housing markets though sales are slowing down in 2019. June single-family home sales were down 3.4% in dollar volume, and Houston’s metro median price of $252,000 was 2% lower than a year ago. However, listings are up 11%, creating a stronger market for buyers.

With jobs and inventory on the rise, Houston’s suburban and residential neighborhoods are good bets for Generation Zers.

Danbury, Connecticut

Situated on the western border with New York State, Danbury is a diverse, safe, and affordable place to buy a home. Western Connecticut home sales have been softening in 2019, inventories are improving, and prices are rising at an annual rate of only 1.5%.

With a median home value of $281,878, Danbury is one of the better housing markets for first-time buyers in New England and is ranked eleventh in WalletHub’s list of most diverse cities in the nation. It’s about 50% white and 30% Hispanic, while African Americans and Asians account for about 6% each. One out of three residents is foreign-born and Danbury is home to a sizable population of Portuguese and Brazilian heritage.

At 3.2% in May, Danbury’s unemployment rate is lower than the national average and the lowest unemployment rate in the state. Danbury’s diverse industry base, ability to maintain manufacturing jobs, and proximity to New York City have contributed to job growth. However, Danbury is a 70-minute commute to the city by train. In 2015, more than 7,200 people in the Danbury region traveled more than 50 miles each way to work, compared to just 4,600 in 2002.

Madison, Wisconsin

According to U.S. Census Bureau data, nearly 7 million American households were housing cost-burdened in 2016, meaning they spent over 50% of their income on housing costs. Only 6.03% of Madison, Wisconsin’s homeowners are severely housing cost-burdened, according to a report from SmartAsset.

That’s a remarkable statistic in light of Madison’s current market conditions. For the past four years, Madison has been in a strong seller’s market. From shrinking inventories and strong demand, the Madison real estate market saw median prices rise to a new high of $313,123 in February. About one out of three transactions became competitive, and homes that sold in 46 days are now spending only 26 days on the market, according to the South Central Wisconsin MLS. The Madison single-family home market has had less than two months of supply since December 2015. Cash offers now account for 15% of all single-family sales.

Signs of change, such as rising inventories and slackening sales, suggest conditions for buyers will improve. Low-interest rates will keep demand secure for the near term, but the days of Madison’s long-lived seller’s market may be numbered.

With an unemployment rate only of only 2.1%, a rate of job growth faster than the national average, a per capita income of $138,960 for a family of four, and a healthy housing market, Madison’s Generation Z members should be able to find first homes they can afford.


Steve Cook is the editor of the Down Payment Report and provides public relations consulting services to leading companies and non-profits in residential real estate and housing finance. He has been vice president of public affairs for the National Association of Realtors, senior vice president of Edelman Worldwide and press secretary to two members of Congress.

Source: homes.com

IRS Tax Form 1099-DIV – How Are Dividends Taxed?

Many investors choose to invest in dividend-bearing stocks or mutual funds focusing on dividend payers as part of their portfolio. And those dividends can pay off in a major way.

Investing in dividend-bearing stocks can be a great choice for investors who are thinking long-term. You may receive dividends in stock or cash, and you can frequently reinvest cash dividends to buy more stock.

Depending upon how you receive dividends, you may need to plan ahead for tax day. Specifically, it is important to understand the different types of dividends, what you can expect as far as paying taxes on them, and how to read the Form 1099-DIV tax form so you’re adequately prepared.

Types of Dividends

There are three main categories of money you might receive: ordinary dividends, qualified dividends, and capital gain distributions. Each type has its own tax implications.

  1. Ordinary Dividends. Dividends paid out from a company’s earnings and profits are referred to as ordinary dividends. They are taxed at normal income tax rates. Many real estate investment trusts (REITs), for example, pay out ordinary dividends, which can raise your overall tax burden. These are sometimes referred to as “nonqualified dividends” and are reported in box 1a of the 1099-DIV.
  2. Qualified Dividends. Dividends may be considered qualified if they’re paid by a U.S. corporation or qualified foreign corporation and you’ve met the holding period requirement for the underlying stock. Qualified dividends are subject to long-term capital gains tax rates and are reported in box 1b on your 1099-DIV.
  3. Capital Gains Distributions. You may also receive payments from your dividend-paying stock in the form of capital gains distributions. These are generally received from mutual funds and are reported in box 2a on your 1099-DIV and are subject to long-term capital gains rates (regardless of how long you owned the shares).

Reporting Requirements

Keep in mind that you must report all dividend income received on your tax return, but the company that paid dividends doesn’t have to send you a 1099-DIV unless you received more than $10 the previous calendar year.

In other words, maintain a record of how much you earned in case you don’t receive an IRS Form 1099-DIV.


What Is a Dividend Reinvestment Plan?

A DRIP, or dividend reinvestment plan, is a method that allows taxpayers to use dividends to purchase more of the same stock instead of receiving the dividends in cash.

Simply put, instead of receiving $3.24 in dividends, the company automatically purchases for you however many shares (or portions of a share) that $3.24 will buy. This nets you a little more stock each time so that, ultimately, you end up with more shares than you started with.

However, even when dividends are reinvested, you receive a 1099-DIV with the dividends reported on it. In the eyes of the Internal Revenue Service, this circumstance is the same as if you received a check for $3.24 and then immediately purchased $3.24 worth of the stock.

A DRIP is simply more convenient and has additional advantages to purchasing stock, such as dollar-cost averaging.

Taxes on DRIP Purchases

Each quarter, when your dividend payments are automatically reinvested to acquire more stock, you inevitably buy shares at different prices, which determines your cost basis in those shares. When you eventually sell your stock for a capital gain or loss, you need to know your cost basis for each share sold.

Hold onto the quarterly statements you receive, which reflect how many shares were bought, at what price, and on which day the investment was made. You can then determine your actual taxable profit. Some software programs and most brokers also keep track of this for you.


How to Read the 1099-DIV Tax Form

The 1099-DIV is the tax form you receive from each company that sends you dividends (or with whom you’ve started a DRIP plan) if it paid you $10 or more in dividends or withheld any taxes from your dividends (or if the company was liquidated and you received a liquidating distribution).

This document splits out the types of dividends you received as follows:

  • Box 1a — Total Ordinary Dividends: All ordinary dividends are reported here. These dividends are taxed at the same rate as your ordinary income.
  • Box 1b — Qualified Dividends: Your qualified dividends are taxed at long-term capital gains rates instead of ordinary income tax rates.
  • Box 2a — Total Capital Gains Distributions: Amounts here are also taxed at long-term capital gains rates.
  • Box 2b — Unrecaptured Section 1250 Gain: You may realize this type of gain from certain real estate or REIT transactions.
  • Box 2c — Section 1202 Gain: This box reports income that is a section 1202 gain from small-business stock.
  • Box 2d — Collectibles Gain at 28%: If you sold artwork or other collectibles you held for investment purposes, the profit is taxed up to a maximum of 28%. If you held the assets for less than a year, it’s taxed at ordinary income tax rates.
  • Box 3 — Nondividend Distributions: If you received nondividend money from a company, it is reported here.
  • Box 4 — Federal Income Tax Withheld: If you’re subject to backup withholding and a company withheld taxes from money reported on the 1099-DIV, it is reported here.
  • Box 5 — Section 199A Dividends: These are dividends from a domestic REIT or a mutual fund that owns domestic REITs. You’ll need to report these dividends on Form 8995 or Form 8995-A.
  • Box 6 — Investment Expenses: If you received a share of amounts deductible by a non-publicly offered regulated investment company (RIC), they’re entered here.
  • Box 7 — Foreign Taxes Paid: If foreign taxes were paid on dividends and other stock distributions, they’re reported here.
  • Box 8 — Foreign Country: In this box, the country to which foreign taxes were paid (the amount in box 7) is reported.
  • Box 9 — Cash Liquidation Distribution: If a company was liquidated, this is the liquidated amount paid to you.
  • Box 10 — Noncash Liquidation Distribution: This section reports noncash distributions and their fair market value.
  • Box 11 — Exempt-Interest Dividends: In many cases, you do not have to pay taxes on exempt-interest dividends.
  • Box 12 — Specified Private Activity Bond Interest Dividends: This box reports exempt-interest dividends paid by a RIC from specified private activity bonds.
  • Box 13 — State: If you had state income tax withheld from your dividend earnings, this box reports which state.
  • Box 14 — State Identification Number: The state identification number of the firm that withheld state income tax is entered here.
  • Box 15 — State Tax Withheld: The amount of state income tax withheld is reported here.

Final Word

In general, taxes on dividends are pretty simple. Most tax preparation software programs ask you to input the information from your 1099-DIV and then proceed to make the necessary calculations for you and record them on the appropriate tax forms.

However, it’s important to know what you earn over the course of the year in dividends in order to anticipate how your tax bill will change as a result.

Source: moneycrashers.com

House-Flipping Financiers Pile Into Sizzling Market

Fix-and-flip investors are enjoying a surge of attention from lenders chasing a booming market. So reports Bloomberg.

AlphaFlow counts more than 60 banks and other lenders backing home flippers, up almost 50% from roughly two months earlier.

Profits on flips are reportedly averaging a record high of around $66,000 per home.

Read the full article from Bloomberg. 

Source: themortgageleader.com

The Pros and Cons of Living in a Multigenerational Household

Living arrangements in America today are a far cry from the “Ozzie and Harriett” nuclear families of the 1950s and 60s. Eighty-four million Americans, 20% of the nation, now live in multigenerational households that include two or more adult generations or grandparents and grandchildren younger than 25.

Multigenerational households are an excellent way for families or individuals to save money. Some Hispanic and Asian societies have traditionally featured homes with two or three generations. Among families with Asian heritage, 29% lived in multigenerational family households in 2016, according to census data. Among Hispanics and African Americans, the shares in 2016 were 27% and 26%, respectively. Among whites, 16% lived with multiple generations of family members.

In recent years, large numbers of young millennials living with their parents on a temporary or semi−permanent basis have accelerated the growth of multigenerational households. One third of 25- to 29-year-olds in 2016 lived with their parents.

Multigenerational households have advantages and disadvantages. Here are some of the most important pros and cons.

Cheerful happy family spending good time together while cooking in kitchenCheerful happy family spending good time together while cooking in kitchen

Advantages of Multigenerational Living

Saving money. Households with two or more adult generations are economical in many ways. When shared by more adults, mortgage payments or rent are lower per person than if they live apart. Other household expenses can also be shared, including utilities, food, maintenance costs, decorating costs, property taxes, homeowners’ insurance, and homeowners’ association fees. Sharing expenses gives young adults the opportunity to build savings or pay down debt.  Living with their families temporarily gives young adults time to reduce debt, improve their credit and save for a down payment.

Easier home financing. Having more adults with financial assets and incomes will increase the chances of having a purchase mortgage or refinancing approved. You may also be able to borrow more. However, lenders will use the lowest credit score when underwriting the mortgage. Before applying, be sure everyone’s credit is in good shape.

Help with minding children. Having additional adults at home, particularly grandparents, helps parents with minding young children. Grandparents help grandchildren survive their parents’ divorce by giving grandchildren undivided attention and helping when single parents are overwhelmed.

Stronger family bonds. When three generations live together, family bonds are strengthened. When grandparents are involved in their lives, children have fewer behavioral and emotional problems. Grandparents can be critically important in the lives of children with divorced parentsLiving with their children and grandchildren relieves grandparent’s loneliness and enriches their daily lives.

Sharing in home equity. The longer you make mortgage payments, the more equity you gain. Equity is the difference between your home’s value and what you owe the lender. You can access your equity by refinancing or selling. All the household members who make mortgage payments should have a written agreement with the borrower who is listed on the title and mortgage to share in a prorated amount of the equity at the time the house is sold or refinanced.

Longevity. A recent NIH survival analysis found that healthy members of multigenerational families have lower premature mortality rates and were likely to live longer.  One reason for this might be because, in a multigenerational household, there are more adults to provide emotional support for each other.  Family support encourages feelings of wellness and stability for each person.

Shared household chores.  Splitting up household chores among adults and older children can result In less burden and stress. For example, grandparents can pick up children from school and babysit when the parents are out. Parents can use their computer skills to pay bills and keep the family budget. Children can be responsible for cleaning their and helping with outdoor tasks like mowing the lawn, raking leaves, and shoveling snow.

Participating in the home interest deduction. If you are listed on the title as a co-owner on the title and on the mortgage as a co-signer, and you and at least one other person paid interest on a mortgage that was for the home, you can deduct the amount of interest you paid. See IRS Publication 936 (2018), Home Mortgage Interest Deduction for more information.

Improved security. Grandparents feel more secure living with family, and their presence ensures that there will be someone at home during the day when many burglaries occur.

Happy Asian extended family sitting on sofa together, posing for group photosHappy Asian extended family sitting on sofa together, posing for group photos

Disadvantages of Multigenerational Living

Less privacy. With more people living together, each will have less personal space than if they lived separately. Living with others may be more difficult for grandparents and young adults who are accustomed to living alone. The transition can be eased by allocating private space for each person where they can retreat when they need to and simple rules, like knocking on bedroom doors before entering.

More noise. Adults who are unaccustomed to being around children may need some adjustment time. Household rules can limit loud play by place and time.

More housework. More people means more dishes to wash, floors to clean more frequently and larger laundry loads. House rules may include putting toys away, cleaning up after cooking, which means more household cleaning and maintenance. Household chores might be rotated for jobs like bathrooms, kitchens, and heavily used family spaces.

Family tensions. Relationships among friends and family can fester when living together. Potential animosities should be considered and addressed before forming the household. Disagreements are bound to occur between friends and family members in a multigenerational household. Common issues that can cause tensions include financial conflicts, parenting differences, and household responsibilities. Rules and procedures for addressing problems like these should be discussed and agreed to before they become problems.

Upgrades and remodeling. Even a new house will require attention after a few years. A new baby or new resident might require renovation or adding new space. Costs should be shared equitably and work scheduled when it will be less of a burden on all.

Retrofitting for seniors. If parents of a disabled child or aging grandparents have not planned for the costs of retrofitting a home for walk-in tubs, stair lifts, and other needs, the household should create a plan for retrofitting that includes financing the cost and scheduling work.

Key Takeaways

For seniors contemplating their retirement options, the opportunity to join their family in a multigenerational household can be a welcome option. They can save money, live more comfortably and enjoy their children and grandchildren as they age. Young adults might find rejoining their family to be a temporary solution that allows them to save money as hey get started in their careers. Multigenerational living may be the first choice for adult singles, younger parents, and grandparents, especially those with an ethnic tradition of two, three, or even four generations living together.

The economics of modern real estate markets make multigenerational households an attractive option for families who have not considered them. In today’s markets, families that can afford a larger home will find more properties for sale in higher price tiers, yet each adult will spend less on housing than if they live apart. As population centers become crowded and new construction continues to fall short of demand, multigenerational living will become even more economical in the future.


Steve Cook is the editor of the Down Payment Report and provides public relations consulting services to leading companies and non-profits in residential real estate and housing finance. He has been vice president of public affairs for the National Association of Realtors, senior vice president of Edelman Worldwide and press secretary to two members of Congress.

Source: homes.com

Jessica Alba’s House is a Pinterest-Perfect Dream Home

There’s no better feeling than knowing that a famous, multi-award winning celebrity also spends her time on Pinterest, day-dreaming and pinning things she’d want to one day have in her dream home. But as it would seem, Jessica Alba is one of us.

She has Pinterest boards dedicated to ‘fireplace ideas’, ‘staircase railings’, ‘kitchen gear & accessories’, ‘laundry room’, ‘kids room’ and the works. But, unlike most of us, her Pinterest boards have taken a life of their own in the form of a $10 million home in Los Angeles.

Jessica Alba started looking for a new place to call home as her family kept growing, she told Architectural Digest while giving them a tour of her new house. She’s blessed to have found it, and lovingly shares it with her husband, Cash Warren, and kids Honor, Haven, and Hayes.

Jessica Alba’s house is keeping it real (and French)

Jessica Alba knew exactly what she wanted from her dream house. Her home is an ode to her love for French décor and to a mom’s desire to create a welcoming space to ‘watch the kids play’ on a Sunday afternoon.

Jessica Alba house in Los Angeles
Jessica Alba house in Los Angeles. Image credit: Stephen Kent Johnson for Architectural Digest

To make the interiors blend into the outdoor areas, Alba had the fireplaces in the living room and her bedroom removed, making room for large windows opening up to the huge backyard. But Santa should’t worry; the fireplace has been moved to the formal living area, with the sole purpose of serving as a place to hang stockings on Christmas. Clearly the family takes their Santa (and Christmas presents) very seriously.

Keeping it organized and practical

Being a mother to three young kids, Jessica Alba made sure the house was kid-friendly. The home may boast of elegant interiors and designer furniture pieces, but they have all been protected by the use of chic slip covers.

Jessica Alba house in Los Angeles
Jessica Alba house in Los Angeles. Image credit: Stephen Kent Johnson for Architectural Digest

The sofas, living room chairs and even the dining chairs are all covered in slip covers made from natural materials. The outdoor lounge chairs too are kept covered when not in use.

Jessica Alba house in Los Angeles
Jessica Alba house in Los Angeles. Image credit: Stephen Kent Johnson for Architectural Digest
jessica alba house living room
Jessica Alba house in Los Angeles. Image credit: Stephen Kent Johnson for Architectural Digest

Jessica’s love of keeping things organized is evident throughout the house. Her laundry room has beautiful baskets named individually for all three of her children. The changing table in her son Hayes’ nursery has also been moved into the washroom so as to avoid any foul smell in the bedroom. The toy caddy in his room is another great example of how she keeps the toys organized and sorted.

Keeping it dreamy and real

From the way she invites you in to the way she talks about the smallest design details around the house, you know Jessica Alba has really put her heart and soul in this dream project. The kitchen island with the butcher block, the huge professional sized stove and the breakfast nook are all things she had been wanting and dreaming for a long time, so it only made sense for them to be there once she set out to decorate her dream house.

Jessica Alba house in Los Angeles
Jessica Alba house in Los Angeles. Image credit: Stephen Kent Johnson for Architectural Digest

SEE ALSO: The Story Behind Carrie Bradshaw’s Apartment in “Sex and the City”

Jessica Alba house in Los Angeles
Jessica Alba house in Los Angeles. Image credit: Stephen Kent Johnson for Architectural Digest

Jessica Alba may have very specific ideas about what she wants, but she sure knows how to compromise. Like the TV set made stylish by being propped on an easel, the easily removable TV table in the master bedroom (that she compromised on for her husband), and the his and hers shower areas in the bathroom (because Mr. Warren complained of her stealing all the water.)

Jessica Alba house in Los Angeles
Jessica Alba house in Los Angeles. Image credit: Stephen Kent Johnson for Architectural Digest

Jessica Alba’s home screams ‘house goals’ in the softest, most elegant voice. It is stylish, warm, luxurious and, most importantly, practical. It is not the kind of house you’d want to tiptoe around so as not to break anything or leave a marking on, but rather a house that you would walk out of with dreamy eyes and tingling heartstrings.

More beautiful celebrity homes

A Look Inside Kris Jenner’s House, Her Zen-like Refuge in Hidden Hills
Where Does Lady Gaga Live?“Neverland” No More! The Sycamore Valley Ranch is Much More than Michael Jackson’s Former HomeStep Inside the Beautiful $19M Beach House Mark Cuban Got Himself for Christmas

Source: fancypantshomes.com

What Are the Most Common Mistakes People Make When Starting a New Company?

Interested in starting a new business? You will need to anticipate mistakes. Here are the most common mistakes new business owners make and how to avoid them.

By

Andrew Charles, Partner
March 30, 2021

mistakes that people make when they are starting a new business? There are several examples that everyone should keep in mind.

If you are interested in starting a new business, then you need to plan for the unexpected. This means anticipating mistakes.

Not finding an opening in the current market

One of the first mistakes that people make when they are trying to start a business is not finding an opening in the current market. With technology the way it is today, it is more competitive than ever. Therefore, there might not be many openings available. At the same time, those who are trying to start a business need to find one.

If you are starting a business, who is going to buy your products and services? Where are they currently getting their products and services from? If your product is not better than the next best alternative, why would customers switch from that location to your business? If you are not able to find an opening in the market, then your business is going to have a hard time getting off the ground. Think about this when you are trying to build a business.

Not putting the right plan in place

Another common mistake that people make is not having the right plan in place. In order for a business to be successful, there has to be a strong plan. The problem is that companies today have a lot of moving parts. Therefore, it is difficult for business owners to keep all the information in the same place. If they cannot see everything at once, they will not be able to identify trends. That is where integrated business planning can be helpful. By aligning technology, finances, supply chains, and other information in the same place, business owners can make the best decision for the future of the company.

Not hiring the right people for the job

There is no business that was successfully built by one person alone. Therefore, business owners need to make sure they find the right people for the job. Even though it is hard to find good help these days, business owners need to take their time, vet everyone, and place their employees in the best position possible to be successful. If business owners do not hire the right people for the job, the company is going to struggle. By taking a look at experience and training, business owners can hire the right help.

There is no business that was successfully built by one person alone. Therefore, business owners need to make sure they find the right people for the job.

Trying to expand too far, too fast

Another mistake that business owners have is trying to expand too quickly. Of course, you would like your business to go as quickly as possible. On the other hand, if you do not have the capital to expand your company, you might take on more debt than you can manage. Even though expanding your business is great, you need to have the cash flow to support this growth. Without a steady flow of cash, you will not be able to keep up with your debt payments, placing your company in a position to default. Expand your company when you have the foundation to support it, not before.

Not asking for help when it is needed

Finally, business owners also need to know when to ask for help. No two companies are the same, and it is helpful to get a perspective from the outside from time to time. If you feel like you are struggling, overwhelmed, or do not know what to do next, do not be afraid to ask for help. This could come in the form of a mentor, a former boss, a teacher, or even a consulting firm. If you ask for help sooner rather than later, you might be able to avoid significant issues that would otherwise threaten the future of your company.

Set your company up for success moving forward

These are just a few of the examples of mistakes that people make when they are starting a new business. If you are trying to place your business in a position to be successful, it is critical to think about these mistakes ahead of time. That way, you can reduce the chances of making a critical mistake that could sink your business. Finally, remember that you do not have to go through this alone. There are trained professionals who are willing to step up and place your business in the best position possible to make a strong mark in your industry.