About the Author

Mary was a newspaper writer/editor for 13 years and worked as spokesperson for a Fortune 500 Company before becoming a freelance writer. She has authored more than two dozen books for young readers and writes for a handful of regional home and garden magazines.

Stories by Mary Boone

Home inspection

My Home Passed Inspection, So It’s Perfect, Right?

Even the most experienced home inspectors can’t always detect problems in these four areas.


Is Buying a Foreclosure or Short Sale Right for You?

Purchasing a foreclosure or short sale property may mean finding a great house at a reduced price. But you should be aware that there are often challenges along the way.

Source: Flickr user Ward Realty

Buying and Selling a Home – at the Same Time – in a Buyers' Market

Buying a home can be a nerve-wracking experience, so can selling a home. Try to take on both tasks at the same time and you’re doubling the stress. Good news: Doing some advance planning can help reduce your number of sleepless nights.

Source: Flickr user Ward Realty

Buying and Selling a Home – at the Same Time – in a Sellers' Market

Buying a home while selling a home — and trying to close both deals at the same time — requires great timing and coordination, a little luck and the understanding that at least one of the parties involved is probably taking a risk.

Real estate agent with sellers

Understanding the Role of the Real Estate Agent

The road to homeownership can be bumpy, and it’s often filled with unexpected turns and detours. That’s why it makes sense to have a real estate pro help guide the way.

Flickr: JD Hancock

Getting Your Finances in Order

Before you get your heart set on the home with the big yard or the condo in the city, you should take steps to demonstrate you have a stable financial situation and are a serious buyer.

Compost bin

What Do You Need to Start Composting?

Food scraps and yard waste make up 20 percent to 30 percent of what ends up in U.S. landfills. By composting those materials, you can recycle them back into the soil and improve your garden.

Which Makes Sense for You: Renting or Buying a Home?

Finances are a major issue, but there are other factors to also consider.


Are You Ready to Buy a Home?

Ask yourself these six questions to determine if you’re real estate-ready.

Insurance umbrella

What Does a Builder’s Warranty Cover?

Builders’ warranties vary greatly, so it’s important that homeowners take the time to learn what’s covered, how to make a claim and the process for resolving disputes that might arise along the way.

3D red glass house

How Close Is Too Close to Power Lines?

If the thought of buying property located near high-voltage power lines gives you pause, you might think ahead to how it will affect resale value.


Don’t Let Smoke Smells Deter Buyers

To truly de-stink your house or apartment, you must remove the source of the problem.


How Much Do Septic Systems Cost to Install?

The cost to build a septic tank system varies widely from as little as $1,500 to upward of $4,000.


How Do I Know Where My Property Lines Are?

Knowing the location of your property boundary lines means you will know where to legally place features such as fences, pools, garages or driveways.

Vintage room hardwood floors

How Much Does It Cost to Refinish Hardwood Floors?

The cost to refinish hardwood floors depends on several variables, including where you live, how large an area you’re planning to refinish and the condition of the floors.

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