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Real estate in the news: Downsizing for retirement, appraisal tips and Oprah’s condo for sale

Downsizing prior to retirement can be a good idea

“The amount of the mortgage shouldn’t burst your budget, and it will allow you to have some flexibility with your savings, to invest or use to pay other expenses (like health insurance).”–tms–realestmctnig-a20140125-20140125,0,6306531.column 

Apartment market soaring 

A senior economist who keeps close tabs on the apartment market said demand for apartments around the country lately is insatiable, and rents are going to continue to climb — with little relief in sight for tenants’ pocketbooks — unless developers get carried away and overbuild.,0,6685812.column

Oprah’s massive condo for sale

Do you have $7.75 million lying around and a cool $9,000 a month for association fees? If so, you can snag the massive customized Water Tower condo belonging to Oprah Winfrey. The condo boasts four bedrooms, five full bathrooms and two half-baths across 9,600 square feet.,0,2304064.story

Tips for how to know if you’re ready to sell your home and how to get the most out of the experience

Mortgage applications dropping

The number of Americans applying for mortgages has fallen 63% since a May peak, reflecting a cooling housing market and higher borrowing rates. Applications are now at a 13-year low.

Appraising property values is an art, so be cautious when relying entirely on estimates from online companies,0,4055094.column