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AOL Real Estate - Blog

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    Mabel Bobo, Pat Rader

    How does a house worth more than $200,000 get sold for a mere $5,000? Pure deception, says the family of an 88-year-old woman who, they claim, was swindled while she lay sick in a nursing-home bed. Mabel Bobo (pictured above left with her daughter) owned her Charlotte, N.C., home for 56 years and raised three kids there. But when her loan became delinquent, the home in the Charlotte's Dilworth neighborhood fell into foreclosure and was put up for auction last June. It garnered bids as high as $48,358, but one investor snapped it up for just a tenth of that -- allegedly through shady means, WCNC-TV in Charlotte reported.

    Mabel Bobo home, Charlotte, NCBobo, who suffers from dementia, had to move into a nursing home nearby when she could no longer care for herself. She says that she had no idea that her home was even foreclosed on. But while she was at the nursing home, she said that she began receiving frequent "surprise visits" from a woman named Laura Shields, who represents Home Appeal, LLC.

    During the visits, Bobo was allegedly asked by Shields to sign over the deed to her small home at 515 Ideal Way. Despite Bobo's lack of understanding and discomfort -- she said that she told Shields to "leave her alone" -- family members said that Bobo was essentially forced to sign the paperwork in order to get Shields to stop visiting her. "[Shields] came to someone who is almost 90 years old and shoved a piece of paper in front of them," Bobo's daughter, Patricia Rader, told WCNC. "[It happened] repeatedly until she was so tired of seeing them, she signed it to get rid of them."

    When WCNC presented the signed deed and asked Bobo if it was her signature on the paper, she answered: "Yes, but I don't remember signing it." Shields' lawyers explain that Bobo was paid $5,000 for the house when she signed the deed in her bed in the nursing home, and that they have an undated check stub to prove it. But according to the family, Bobo does not have any more bank accounts and her family "never received a dime." Bobo's family is currently fighting a legal battle to get the home back, saying that Bobo wasn't in "any mental condition" to sign the house away.


    See also:
    Bank Flip-Flops, Forecloses on Woman With Stage 4 Breast Cancer

    Foreclosure Scam: 530 Charged for Allegedly Defrauding 73,000 Homeowners

    Woman Tags Home With Message to Bank: You're 'Stealing' My House

    More on AOL Real Estate:
    Find out how to
    calculate mortgage payments.
    Find
    homes for sale in your area.
    Find
    foreclosures in your area.
    See celebrity real estate.

    Follow us on Twitter at @AOLRealEstate or connect with AOL Real Estate on Facebook.

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    You'd think that the owners of Regis Philbin's former Greenwich, Conn., home would maintain the stately, back-country house in homage to the legendary television personality. But instead, Raymond and Yanina LaChance have announced they want to tear the home down completely -- and replace it with a home double its size, according to the Greenwich Time newspaper.

    The LaChances purchased the sprawling 6,000-square-foot home for $3 million in September 2011, two months after the Philbins re-listed it. (It initially had been placed on the market in 2008, priced at $5.9 million.) Though the 1979-built home boasts four spacious bedrooms, 6½ bathrooms, stone fireplaces and intricate wood details, the LaChances want it all gone. In its place, the Greenwich Time says, they plan to build a 2.5-story, 13,505-square-foot house with a theater, wine room, exercise room, pool, bathroom, sauna, playroom and a covered terrace. Six bedroom suites are planned for the second floor alone.

    In case you were feeling bad for Regis' old, possibly soon-to-be-nonexistent property, some minor good news: The newspaper says that LaChances do plan to keep the swimming pool and tennis court, according to Planning and Zoning Commission documents. Well, that's nice. No word yet on whether the plans to tear down the home have been approved, but a hearing was scheduled for Tuesday evening regarding the matter.

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    See more:
    'Real Housewife' Lisa Hochstein: Why My Miami Mansion Should Be Demolished (VIDEO)
    Demolish Taj Mahal? Indian Pol Muhammad Azam Khan Says it Should Have Never Been Built
    Teardown Tales: Now You See 'Em, Now You Don't

    More on AOL Real Estate:
    Find out how to
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    Find foreclosures in your area.
    Find homes for rent in your area.
    See more celebrity real estate.

    Follow us on Twitter at @AOLRealEstate or connect with AOL Real Estate on Facebook.

    Regis Philbin Reveals What Lured Him Back to TV

     

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    What Does a Perfect Listing Look Like?



    We've already told you that first impressions are everything when it comes to listings. Keep your place neutral (put those family photos away!) so that it will appeal to everyone who walks through, yada,yada,yada. But even that isn't always enough. So what makes for the perfect listing? You'll never guess what house hunters are looking for the most.

    Homeowners and Realtors spend a lot of time beautifying the inside of their homes: the sleekly designed living room awash in natural light from tall windows, a gleaming granite countertop in the kitchen, the perfect luxurious master suite. But the majority of people perusing online listings aren't staring at photos of all these gorgeous features (though they are beautiful, we're sure). The Wall Street Journal reports a new study as saying that 95 percent of viewers of online listings spend the most time looking at what you generally see first: the exterior shot. What do they spend the least amount of time looking at? The lair many of us hold so dear to our hearts: the master bathroom.

    But please don't spend a lot of time talking up the features of the home you want buyers to see. Most of them aren't really paying attention. Viewers may spend only about 20 percent of their time actually reading the descriptions and another 20 percent on Realtor comments, according to a study by Michael Seiler, founder and director of the Institute for Behavioral and Experimental Real Estate at Old Dominion University. The photos, naturally, are the most important feature: 60 percent of viewers' time is usually spent looking at those. Find out more about what the perfect listing looks like in the video above.

    See more:
    Ugly Real Estate Listing Photos: How to Avoid Them
    Home Listing Photos: What You Can't Get Away With
    Worst Listing Photos of 2012

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    Find out how to
    calculate mortgage payments.
    Find foreclosures in your area.
    Find homes for rent in your area.
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    Pope Francis hotel suite

    As we've learned, Pope Francis hasn't needed the flashy homes that come along with being a high-ranking religious figure. (He's clearly not praying for the same things we are.) And even now that he has access to one of the grandest estates in the world -- the papal residence at the Vatican's Apostolic Palace -- he's still turning it down. Where is it that he would prefer to stay instead? A hotel.

    Pope Francis hotel suiteThe new pontiff has been staying in a simple suite at the Casa Santa Marta hotel (pictured above and at left) while the pope's official home at Palazzo Apostolico (Apostolic Palace) was being renovated. But work is done, and the papal residence is move-in ready. Yet Francis won't budge and has decided to continue living in the hotel room for the time being, CNN reported a Vatican spokesman as saying. No date has been set for Francis' move.

    According to CNN, Pope Francis' decision to stay at Casa Santa Marta near St. Peter's Basilica means that the pontiff will be able to meet his fellow priests for Mass and other communal activities. He will still use the Palazzo Apostolico for meetings and papal engagements. Francis' hotel suite is where he and all cardinals stayed during the papal conclave to elect a new pope.

    Pope Francis' decision to remain at Casa Santa Marta is consistent with his reputation as a humble and simple man. Before being elected pope, Francis passed up the opportunity as the head of Argentina's archbishop to live in the grand Archbishop's Palace in Buenos Aires. Instead, he chose to live in a "small room" in a downtown Buenos Aires apartment building, where he commuted by bus to the Metropolitan Cathedral. In this humble space, Then-Cardinal Bergoglio even did his own cooking -- and the place was only heated by a small stove, said USA Today.

    See also:
    Go Inside the Vatican That Tourists Don't See

    Pope Benedict's New Home (VIDEO)
    Inside Pope's Summer Home at Castel Gandolfo

    More on AOL Real Estate:
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    Inside Pope Francis' Record On Poverty

     

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    german castle for saleInstead of plopping down millions for an overrated Hollywood party pad, why not invest your money in a truly unique piece of property: a European castle. We're not talking just the abandoned ones (although some of those can be had for as little as one euro, apparently). Some of these castles, with their stately, old-world exteriors, have been entirely modernized on the inside for today's luxurious ideals.

    According to The Wall Street Journal, there are about 5,000 castles in Germany left over from its days of nobility, and 20 to 40 of those grand homes hit the market every year. And it just so happens that for what you'll be getting, many of these properties are a great value. Take one Victorian manor about a half-hour outside of Hamburg: Built in 1894, it has 28 rooms, five bathrooms, four garages and sits on 20 acres. How much? Just over $5 million. But, hey, there are plenty more castles to sink your teeth (and perhaps your pocketbook) into. Watch the video above to check out other German castles on the market.

    See also:
    $9 Million Castle in Massachusetts
    Miami's Real-Life Castle, With Moat
    Tag This Castle as a Battle Zone in Graffiti Debate

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    This week's #housepornthurs contest was a nail biter! Turns out that a head-to-head between a glass-covered luxury penthouse and a gated Mediterranean manse makes for a pretty epic battle. But, alas, someone has to be the winner: Edging the competition out by a mere three votes, @DouglasElliman stole the No. 1 spot with the gorgeous glassy penthouse high above NYC. (But runner-up @PartnersTrust deserves a shout-out for a valiant effort!)

    Housepornthurs logoThe duplex penthouse, at the crossroads of Manhattan's trendy Soho, Tribeca and West Village neighborhoods, is an architectural masterpiece. The entire west side of the home is a glass wall overlooking the breathtaking NYC cityscape and the Hudson River. You can watch the sunset behind the Statue of Liberty, from every vantage point in the apartment, the listing says.

    The 3,500-square-foot pad has never been lived in, so it's in mint condition. It has four bedrooms and three bathrooms, but it's the upstairs master suite that you'll love the most. The wall of glass lines both the master bedroom and en suite bathroom, and there's a glass shower and free-standing tub. There's a home theater and a custom kitchen with every high-end appliance imaginable. Now head outside for a real treat: a 1,500-square-foot landscaped rooftop terrace with an outdoor kitchen and wet bar. It's OK, jealousy is a natural response.

    Kane Manera, Leonard Steinberg and Herve Senequier of Douglas Elliman Real Estate have the listing.

    Find more homes for sale in New York City, or search listings in your area.

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    See more Houses of the Day on AOL Real Estate.

    Got a tip for House of the Day? Know of an exceptional or unusual property currently listed for sale? Please email colin.croughan@teamaol.com with your suggestions and be sure to include links to listing details and photos. (Due to the volume of response, we unfortunately are unable to reply to each submission.)

    More on AOL Real Estate:
    Find out how to
    calculate mortgage payments.
    Find
    homes for sale in your area.
    Find
    foreclosures in your area.
    See celebrity real estate.

    Follow us on Twitter at @AOLRealEstate or connect with AOL Real Estate on Facebook.


    Aol Real Estate's Inside Look: Slide Home

     

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     $6.5 million New York City apartment in the One57 Tower was reportedly purchased for a toddler in China.

    If you worry that you're spoiling your child, then this might make you feel better: A mother in China has bought a $6.5 million New York City apartment -- for her toddler. According to reports by Chinese broadcaster CCTV, Sotheby's senior vice president Kevin Brown confirmed that the anonymous woman bought the apartment in preparation for her daughter's future college years at one of America's best universities.

    "[The woman] said, well, her daughter was going to go to Columbia, or NYU, or maybe Harvard, and so she needed to be in the center of the city and that was why she was picking this one particular apartment," Brown told CCTV. "So I said: 'Oh, how old is your daughter?' And she said: 'Well, she's 2.' And I was just shocked."

    The apartment is the One57 tower (pictured above), a 90-floor, 1,004-foot glass skyscraper overlooking Central Park. The New York Times reports that the tower is slated to be the tallest residential building in New York when it is finished next year.

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    According to Time, the extravagant purchase has left "tongues wagging" in China about where the money could have come from, with rumors floating around on social media that the woman is related to a "corrupt government official."

    That, or she might just be really, really rich.



    See also:
    The House In 'The Big Chill' Lists for $4.5 Million
    Glass Penthouse Atop NYC Will Have You Seeing Stars

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    Find
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    %Gallery-167191%
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    We thought New York's 325-square-foot apartment was small. Then, San Francisco came out with a ridiculously minuscule 160-square-foot apartment. Now there's a 128-square-foot house for sale in Dover, Ark.? How low can you go, people?

    Despite its size, we'll admit that this tiny house perhaps boasts everything that you could possibly want in a home: A kitchen, stove, dining area, bathroom, a makeshift bedroom/attic space. The micro-home somehow achieves all of this without all the ultra-modern, custom modular furniture exhibited by its New York and San Francisco counterparts. "Perfect for a get-away home, a hunting cabin, or an in-between home," the listing reads. It's going for $22,900, which maybe is not so bad considering it sits atop an acre of land.

    Check it out for yourself in the gallery below. (And thanks to our pals at Curbed for the tip!).

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    See the listing here.

    See also: A House That's Only 1-Square Meter
    5 Tiny Model Homes Hint at Future of Urban Housing
    Tiny Houses, Big Trend

    More on AOL Real Estate:
    Find homes for rent in your area.
    Find out how to calculate mortgage payments.
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    Top Tiny Apartments You Won't Believe

     

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    Home under $700,000

    For $700,000, how much house can you get? We asked our friends at Realtor.com to pull out some of the best homes for sale right now for $700,000. You might be surprised at what's out there: Some great deals can be had, but in markets that have been heating up, the money buys you a little less than it used to. Click through the gallery below to see what $700,000 buys you.

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    Larry Ellison home, Lake Tahoe

    Billionaire Oracle chief Larry Ellison has just listed his Lake Tahoe mansion in Glenbrook, Nev., for a whopping $28.5 million. No surprise to us, really, considering that he's built another mega-mansion on the other side of the lake, which he's just about ready to move into, according to our friends at Curbed.

    If the new mansion's anything like the one that he's just thrown on the market, then we want in! It boasts 230 feet of lake frontage with its own white sand beach and private harbor. And that beachfront cabana with sundeck just sweetens the deal! Yes, owning your own Hawaiian island just isn't enough for some members of the 1 percent. Oh, you haven't forgotten that Ellison bought 98 percent of the Hawaiian island of Lanai, have you? And then bought a freakin' airline to get him to and fro?!

    He'll keep that while you settle for his measly 14,192-square-foot mansion. Altogether, Ellison's just-listed Lake Tahoe property boasts 13 bedrooms and 13 bathrooms. Maybe its movie theater, library and sauna will also entice you. But, yeah, it's no Hawaiian island.

    See the listing for more details.

    Find more homes for sale in Glenbrook, Nev., or search listings in your area.

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    Larry Ellison Lists Lake Tahoe Compound For $28.5M

     

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    Hollywood heavyweight Joel Schumacher, the director of the cult 1980s film "St. Elmo's Fire" and a trio of "Batman" movies, has just thrown his gorgeous California mansion at the foothills of Carpinteria on the market for $7.25 million. And we want it. Bad.

    Decked out in earthy and neutral tones and boasting wood-beamed cathedral-style ceilings, stone walls and fireplaces, the home is a far cry from the glass-walled McMansions of Schumacher's fellow A-list neighbors. It's also positively flanked by lush vegetation as well as nature and ocean views. The three-bedroom main house (featured in Architectural Digest in 2003) has colorful, almost Aztec-style furnishings and gorgeous shabby-chic vintage decor. An estate that's as stylish as Shumacher's movies -- bravo!

    Riskin Associates has the listing. Thanks to our pals at Curbed for the tip!

    Find more homes for sale in Carpinteria, Calif., or search listings in your area.

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    Roman emperor Tiberius was one of the world's greatest generals, having conquered Pannonia, Dalmatia, Raetia, and temporarily Germania under his 23-year reign. But when he wasn't busy building his empire, he was living the luxe life on his own private fortress villa, named Castiglione, atop the Italian island of Capri. And now it's on the market for a whopping $44.85 million.

    The castle-like structure towers 250 meters above sea level and boasts 360-degree views over the island, according to the listing. The main home boasts 6,921 square feet of space and a circular swimming pool overlooking the Mediterranean. The home is flanked by 9.8 acres of garden and endless miles of glistening blue ocean. Definitely one to add to our wish list!

    Diletta Spinola of Sotheby's International Realty has the listing. Thanks to our pals at Curbed for the tip!

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    Old Farm Transformed Into Gorgeous Family Home




















    We love conversions. Church conversions, nuclear missile silo conversions, we've covered them all! But we still dig this farm conversion in Barrington, Ill. Formerly a seven-acre working farm with more than 4,000 chickens and goats, among other farm animals, it's since been turned into a stunning four-bedroom, three-bathroom luxury home.

    The farm-turned-home also features a full apartment with its own bedroom, bathroom, sitting room, kitchenette and garage. Additionally, the sprawling property boasts a gorgeous coach house with soaring ceilings and stunning wooden detailing. Beneath the coach house lies a wine cellar that was formerly the farm's barn. (You can still see remnants of the barn everywhere you look!)

    "It's not your average, run-of-the mill home," said Realtor Tara Kelleher, of Sotheby's International Realty. "It appeals to a person who wants to feel cozy in a beautiful, well-situated property." It's pricey -- $1.8 million! -- but we love it: Do you? Well, it may not be for everyone. So if it's not your thing, then maybe you'll enjoy some other types of crazy home conversions. In the gallery below, we pulled together some of the most unique home conversions we've ever seen (a water tower?!) Click through to see them all.

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    See more:
    Conversion Therapy: Turning Old Factories Into Glam Homes
    Inspired Church Conversions

    More on AOL Real Estate:
    Find out how to
    calculate mortgage payments.
    Find
    homes for sale in your area.
    Find
    foreclosures in your area.
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    Neoclassical museum-quality estate or artful English-style green home? This week's #housepornthurs was a landslide: Nearly all of our voters opted for the opulent Neoclassical estate in San Francisco. Just like us, true ostentatious luxury always grabs their attention!

    This amazing home feels like you're stepping into an art museum. Grand marble columns line an open sun-drenched three-story atrium with a large stained-glass skylight in the ceiling. Winding double-marble staircases lead to a second-floor indoor wraparound balcony where you can peer down to the elegant marble floors. There are huge rooms with the finest of home accents, such as gleaming marble fireplaces, coffered ceilings and elegant furnishing so beautiful you might not even want to sit on them!

    The sprawling 17,895-square-foot estate has more than you could dream of: eight bedrooms, seven bathrooms, nine fireplaces, three kitchens, an elevator, a black marble and a ballroom. (Good grief!) The property comes with a 2,618-square-foot guesthouse and another empty lot. Plus, you'll get detailed architectural drawings to prepare for a full renovation of the place. The 22-plus-room home looks like a monument, and the price tag is rather monumental, too: $21 million.

    See the listing for more details.

    Find more homes for sale in San Francisco, or search listings in your area.

    The #housepornthurs contest is a weekly Twitter conversation hosted by @aolrealestate. Tweet listings every Thursday to AOL Real Estate with the hashtag #housepornthurs for a chance to have one of your submissions featured as a House of the Day the following week.

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    See more Houses of the Day on AOL Real Estate.

    Got a tip for House of the Day? Know of an exceptional or unusual property currently listed for sale? Please email colin.croughan@teamaol.com with your suggestions and be sure to include links to listing details and photos. (Due to the volume of response, we unfortunately are unable to reply to each submission.)

    More on AOL Real Estate:
    Find out how to
    calculate mortgage payments.
    Find
    homes for sale in your area.
    Find
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    See celebrity real estate.

    Follow us on Twitter at @AOLRealEstate or connect with AOL Real Estate on Facebook.

     

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    One of the biggest driving forces of the housing recovery has been deep-pocketed investors snapping up single-family homes to rent out. But that works better for the corporate buyers, not always the individual investors. Still, it can be quite lucrative if you have the money.

    According to online foreclosure marketplace RealtyTrac, there are still plenty of cities out there that offer ample opportunity for everyday buyers to purchase single-family homes and rent them out at a decent profit. These 20 cities are the best for buying single-family rentals.

    "Buying single-family homes as rentals that actually generate good monthly cash flow has become more difficult over the past year as institutional investors crowded into the market, snapping up tens of thousands of properties in 2012 alone," said Daren Blomquist, vice president at RealtyTrac. "But there are still opportunities for the more conservative, individual investor to buy rental homes that generate a healthy return on investment. It often just takes persistence and willingness to pass on bad deals. The top 20 markets we selected represent the best chance to buy rental homes that generate good cash flow, but opportunities are available in most markets across the country given the combination of relatively low prices, low interest rates and a strong rental market."

    Click through the gallery below to see the 20 best cities to buy single-family rentals.

    Note: Financed cash flow refers to the monthly profit you would make from renting out a single-family home for which you have a 20-percent down mortgage with a 4 percent interest rate; cash purchase cash flow is the profit if you bought the home in cash and have no mortgage payment.

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    See more:
    10 Best Cities to Find Short Sales
    10 Best Cities to Own a Home
    In the 10 Best Cities for Jobs, Hot Housing Markets, Too

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    Find out how to
    calculate mortgage payments.
    Find
    homes for sale in your area.
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    foreclosures in your area.
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    Home Buyers Remorse




















    Buying a house isn't like buying a $500 handbag. Having buyer's remorse? You can take that handbag back to the store. But if you've already signed the contract to buy a house, it's a done deal. There's no customer service rep who will give you a refund on your purchase of a home.

    If you're buying a home, you must be 100 percent sure that that's the home you want. If you find yourself in a situation where you wish you hadn't bought the house -- tough cookies. Watch the video above to know what to do if you find yourself having homebuyer's remorse.

    See more:
    How to Get Out of a Real Estate Contract
    3 'Weasel' Contingencies a Real Estate Contract Needs
    What Makes the Perfect Listing?

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    Find out how to
    calculate mortgage payments.
    Find foreclosures in your area.
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    We've heard of homes that blend right into the great outdoors and treehouse living, but this takes all of that to a whole new level. Californian artist Jayson Fann has created human-sized bird's nests that allow humans to sleep and live in the trees -- much like a bird would.

    Fann began by stripping the leaves from the branches that would form the walls of the birds nest, and fitting them into a "flowing form integrating structural integrity with artistic flow." To ensure that the nest holds up, Fann builds a separate, sturdy base for the structure upon which the nest is anchored using a crane. The insides are then decked out with comfy furnishings and throw pillows, where people can happily relax and Zen out.

    Intrigued? You can rent one of these babies, located at the Big Sur Treebones Resort in California. You can also sign up for a workshop to learn how to construct these bird's nests (what Fann has dubbed "spirit nests") yourself. Check out more on Fann's Spirit Nest Facebook page.

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    See more:
    Treehouses That Make Us Want to Live In the Woods
    Costa Rica's Finca Bellavista Treehouse Community is 100% Sustainable
    'World's Tallest Treehouse' Grew From a Divine Vision

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    Find out how to
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    A grieving widow in Port Orange, Fla., has a statue of an angel in her front yard, a token of the happy years she spent with her husband before she lost him. But her neighborhood homeowners association says the statue violates community covenants, and if she doesn't remove it, she'll pay a fine, Orlando TV station WESH reported.

    Norma Freiji (pictured at left) was one of the first residents of the 13-year-old Ashton Lakes subdivision, and she said that she has always had yard art displayed. But now the HOA is asking all residents to remove statues in front and side yards. That means that cute figurines dotting many yards in the subdivision -- pelicans, egrets, gnomes and even a basketball hoop affixed to a garage -- must go. Homeowners received a letter recently from the HOA outlining the demands.

    "I have her lit up at night with a solar light. She looks so beautiful," Freiji told WESH of her angel statue. She began to weep as she explained its significance to her and her deceased husband. "I just have it because I lost my husband, and it's just sentimental, that's all."

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    Jim Clapprood is the resident who was asked to remove a basketball hoop from his garage or pay a $100-a-month fine. He said that he understands HOAs must have rules to protect home values, but this is going a little too far. "A basketball hoop for children to play at the end of a cul-de-sac -- I don't see how that affects values," Clapprood said.

    The HOA has declined to comment on the requested statue removal in the neighborhood. The HOA president didn't comment either, but WESH went to his house. The station discovered a decorative fountain in his front yard and a cat statue near his door.

    Fights between residents and their neighborhood HOAs are a dime a dozen. Recently, a soldier living in a condominium fought back against the condominium association when it demanded that he remove American flags from the front of his home. But HOAs do have broad rights to ban certain objects from being displayed on homes -- including political yard signs.

    See more:
    HOA 'Steals' Homeowner's Virgin Mary Statue
    Playboy Bunny Holly Madison: Hounding by HOA Over Doghouse Forcing Me to Move

    'Party Rock Anthem' Halloween Light Show Banned by HOA

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    Casey Kasem home, Los Angeles

    If we counted down our top 40 reasons why we love real estate, Casey Kasem's sprawling Los Angeles home would definitely make the list. Lucky for us, the radio personality made famous by hosting "American Top 40" from 1970 to 2004 has listed his gorgeous 12,000-square-foot Los Angeles estate! Not so lucky for us, it's listed for a staggering $42 million.

    Jean and Casey KasemKasem and his wife, Jean, are going for a mega-profit on the sale of their home. According to Curbed, they purchased the property in 1989 for a mere $1.725 million. Of course, the extensive and continuous renovations they've made to the place probably accounts for the inflated sale price. The Los Angeles Times reported that Jean Kasem has been rebuilding, expanding and updating the eight-bedroom, 14-bathroom house ever since the couple moved in more than 20 years ago.

    "We tried to make it a home, not a mansion," Jean told the Times, "because mansions are tough to live in." She was still doing renovations when the home hit the market. According to the Times, Casey jokingly calls Jean "Lady Winchester" in reference to the owner of the famed Winchester Mystery House in San Jose. The Winchester house has become famous because of its continual expansion during the owner's lifetime.

    If the $42 million price tag of the Kasems' home gives you sticker shock, maybe this will make it worth it to you: It has a heart-shaped pool in the backyard. How romantic! There's also a tennis court and guesthouse on the property. Inside, you'll find a hair salon, library, bar and gorgeous European-style art and antique furniture.

    See the listing for more details.

    Find more homes for sale in Los Angeles, or search listings in your area.

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    See more Houses of the Day on AOL Real Estate.

    Got a tip for House of the Day? Know of an exceptional or unusual property currently listed for sale? Please email colin.croughan@teamaol.com with your suggestions and be sure to include links to listing details and photos. (Due to the volume of response, we unfortunately are unable to reply to each submission.)

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    Do-It-Yourself Ideas For Small Spaces


    With some of the latest designs for apartments showing a trend toward smaller spaces (uh, did you see the 350-square-foot vision for New York City's new "microstudio"?), how on earth are we supposed to fit anything in our homes? If you're planning to give San Francisco's "micro-apartment" -- measuring a claustrophobic 160 square feet -- a shot, that's probably the first thing on your mind. Well, we're glad you asked.

    There are tons of cool ideas for design elements that also save space. A recent segment on "The Rachael Ray Show" explored some of the nifty things you can do. We were totally surprised by them, and we're dying to tell you! But before we spill the beans, watch the video above to get awesome ideas for DIY projects that save space in small spaces.

    Find apartments for rent in your area.

    See more:
    Tiny 128-Square-Foot House in Arkansas Has Everything But Space
    Hong Kong's 40-Square-Foot Apartments Will Make You Squirm (PHOTOS)
    Storage Solutions in a Small Apartment

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