Week in Review: What We Liked From the Week That Was

Florida was one of the hardest hit markets during the real estate bust and troubles still remain, but towns along the Atlantic coast in the Sunshine State are starting to see signs of a recovery.  Sales in some of the state’s beach resort areas are up over 30 percent over last yearThe Lone Star State has also reported increased home sales in its major cities over the past six months. Here’s to hoping the rest of the country will follow!

In the wake of disappointing housing sales in February, some economists remain optimistic that the resulting discount on houses will entice undecided consumers to jump into the buying game.  Some analysts expect this spring to be more successful than that of 2010, even without the tax credit, reports The Wall Street Journal. The first time homebuyers who are moving forward are discovering that the starter home is not what it used to be – it’s bigger.

From first time homebuyers, to retirees planning a new stage of life…According to a survey, 49 percent of those who will move will cross state lines, citing cost of living as the primary reason. So where do they see themselves flocking?  The Carolinas top the list, followed by Florida, Tennessee and Arizona.

According to AOL Real Estate, curb appeal has an important psychological effect on potential home buyers, as the buyer will enter the front door with a positive outlook if the outside of the house is well groomed.  If you need a little inspiration, get motivated with these front yard makeovers. If the inside needs an update, take a page from decorator Mario Buatta who says the easiest way to “szoosh up a room is with slipcovers.”

On Saturday, people around the globe will go dark for the Earth Hour initiative, a campaign designed to address the problem of climate change and energy conservation.   Even the bright lights of Las Vegas will go dark on its infamous Strip.  Will you turn your lights off?

If this dark hour inspires you, check out ways to practice environmentally conscious gardening, including how to water your yard efficiently.

We lost a Hollywood legend, AIDS activist and entrepreneur this week when the legendary Elizabeth Taylor passed.  She will certainly live on through her work for years to come.

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