Channel: Business Insider
Browsing All 48954 Browse Latest View Live
Mark channel Not-Safe-For-Work? cancel confirm NSFW Votes: (0 votes)
Are you the publisher? Claim or contact us about this channel.

8 Cheap Cars That The Richest Americans Love To Drive


toyota camry beach house

The wealthiest Americans are cheapskates, at least as far as their tastes in automobiles goes. Perhaps that is why some rich Americans stay rich.

24/7 Wall St. asked auto trends research firm Truecar to find the best-selling cars and light trucks that America’s rich drive.

See the richest Americans' favorite cheap cars >

Truecar analyzed industry sales data from the 10 wealthiest U.S. ZIP codes by median income, according to the Internal Revenue Service, including neighborhoods in New York City, Greenwich, Conn., and the gated community of Fishers Island, Fla. Based on the 20 top-selling cars from Truecar’s report, 24/7 Wall St. identified the eight cheap cars the richest Americans drive.

Most rich Americans drive affordable cars. The average price of eight of the cars among the top 10 was less than $40,000. 24/7 Wall St. excluded the two most expensive cars because they are considered luxury models, but by the standard of high-end cars, they cost very little.

One model that made the top 10 is the Mercedes E-Class, which had an average price paid of $48,362. Since Mercedes has a number of models that sell for more than $100,000, the E-Class barely makes the middle of the car company’s model line based on price. The second luxury car among the top 10 is the BMW X5 SUV, which has an average price paid of $56,050. The X5 M, the high performance model, costs more than $102,000 fully loaded.

The tastes of the wealthy do not vary much from the average car owner. Five of the cars rich Americans buy are made by either Honda Motor Co. or Toyota Motor Corp. These two brands have consistently done well among American buyers and have taken market share from U.S. manufacturers for years. They continue to offer high quality, relatively low prices and efficient engines that get good gas mileage. Toyota and Honda cars are at the top of quality surveys. Two of the cars on our list are the Honda Accord and Toyota Camry. The remaining three on the list are from German automakers.

Not a single American car made the list. Even a look beyond the top eight sellers to the top 20 shows that German and Japanese models dominate. The only two American models on the wider list are the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Jeep Wrangler. As further evidence of the frugality of the wealthy car owner, the Grand Cherokee has an average price of $26,158. The Wrangler’s is just $22,510.

For those who assume that Americans with median incomes well into the double digits mostly drive $80,000 cars, the fact is otherwise. If anything, the rich drive the same cars most people do.

These are the eight cheap cars the richest Americans drive.

#8: Toyota Camry

Average price: $24,237
Type: Midsized car
Total sold 2012: 243,816 (2)

The Camry was the second best-selling car or light truck in the United States through the first seven months of this year. The inexpensive, high-mileage car has been a staple of the Toyota line-up since 1982. The Camry is sold in both four-door and hatchback models.

The Camry relies on a series of four-cylinder engines to keep gas mileage low. Toyota claims 6.8 million people currently drive Camrys in the U.S. The Camry is the fourth most popular car among the wealthy of Chicago.

#7: Honda Accord

Average price: $23,168
Type: Midsized car
Total sold 2012: 183,817 (3)

The Honda Accord is the third best-selling car in America so far this year. The Accord’s base model is a four-door sedan, and the vehicle is also offered as a two-door coupe. The Accord relies on a four-cylinder engine to achieve good gas mileage, but the high-end EX-L comes with a V6.

The Accord was the first Japanese car built in the U.S. when production began in Marysville, Ohio, in 1982. This car is the third best-selling car among the wealthy of Manhattan.

#6: Honda CR-V

Average price: $30,197
Type: Midsized SUV
Total sold 2012: 167,236 (12)

The CR-V is Honda’s base SUV model. So far this year, it is the 12th best-selling car in America. The light truck is available in two-wheel and all-wheel drive. All CR-V models run on four-cylinder engines, which allow it to get an EPA estimated 31 MPG on the highway—an extraordinary number for an SUV.

The Honda CR-V ranks as the second most popular car among wealthy residents of the Windy City and comes in fifth among the rich of Manhattan.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Please follow Getting There on Twitter and Facebook.

The 25 Biggest Landowners In America


john malone

Good old fashioned land has become one of the hottest investments in the world, as stocks disappoint, currencies go to war, and food prices soar.

Luckily, America has a lot of land.

Especially America's 100 biggest private landowners, according to the latest data from The Land Report.

The top dog on the list is, for the second year running, media tycoon John Malone, who owns 2.2 million acres—more than twice as much land as Delaware. He narrowly beat out fellow media tycoon Ted Turner.

#25 The Flitner Family owns 300,000 acres

David Flitner is a third-generation Wyoming rancher. He and wife Paula own the Hideout Lodge and Guest Ranch, a working dude ranch, in Shell, Wyo.

Data published with permission from The Land Report.

#24 The Nunley Family owns 301,500 acres

The Nunley brothers have been in the ranching business for more than 70 years, and specialize in the Santa Gertrudis breed of cow. They own holdings in Texas and New Mexico, including a major cow-calf operation.

Data published with permission from The Land Report.


#23 Pat Broe owns 310,000 acres

Broe's investment and asset management company controls over 100 companies in real estate, energy and transportation.

He owns land in many states. Broe's Hubble & Green Ranches in New Mexico cover 290,000 acres. His Colorado’s Great Western Industrial Park became a major source of the state’s green job growth in 2008.

Data published with permission from The Land Report.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Please follow The Life on Twitter and Facebook.

Hedge Fund Legend Julian Robertson Owns These Breathtaking Luxury Lodges In New Zealand


Julian RobertsonForbes Life has a profile of legendary hedge fund manager Julian Robertson and his breathtaking properties in New Zealand in the magazine's November 5th issue.

Robertson, who has an estimated net-worth of $2.6 billion, owns three high-end luxury New Zealand lodges -- Kauri Cliffs Lodge (Mautari Bay), Matakauri Lodge (Queenstown) and The Farm at Cape Kidnappers (Hawke's Bay).

What's more is the famed hedge fund manager runs all of them as businesses. 

Robertson first went to New Zealand in the late 1970s with his family after a stint and Kidder, Peabody & Co. to write a novel.  

Upon returning to the United States, he launched Tiger Management, one of the most successful hedge funds of all time. 

Now we're going to take a photo tour of his stunning properties Down Under.

(Kauri Cliffs: 1 of 9) Kauri Cliffs is located in a sub-tropical region on the top of the north island of New Zealand's east coast.

Source: Kauri Cliffs 

(Kauri Cliffs: 2 of 9) Kauri Cliffs was a sheep farm when Robertson purchased it. Now it boasts a five star lodge golf/spa resort on around 6,000 acres.

Source: Kauri Cliffs  


(Kauri Cliffs: 3 of 9) The lodge is reminiscent of a plantation house.

Source: Kauri Cliffs 

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Please follow Clusterstock on Twitter and Facebook.

Tour The $1.4 Billion Terminal Delta Is Building At JFK


jaunted jfk delta terminal construction

There are some 60 airlines flying into and out of New York-JFK Airport. Competition is fierce, but New York's always game for a little of that.

Passengers are looking for the cheapest tickets (of course), shiniest planes, most routes and newest facilities. Come next spring, Delta will claim at least that last one as it opens a 9-gate extension of Terminal 4, complete with the largest SkyClub lounge in the world.

Click here to tour the terminal >

The entire project cost is in the billions, so it's no fresh paint fixer-upper or anything; every month construction workers build $26 million worth of new stuff into Terminal 4 (that's over $1 million every workday!). Why should you care? Because Delta wants you in it, loving it and flying out of it...and soon. They are on schedule and under budget (whoa) for an opening in May 2013. Arrive early for your late spring Delta flight, because this place will warrant some checking out.

Speaking of checking it out, Delta allowed us to don a hard hat and Timberlands last week and have a peek at the construction for ourselves. We fly out of all JFK terminals pretty regularly and can say so far so good on the decisions Delta's making. Our favorite bit? Terminal 4's extensive retail and dining zone will switch from being pre-security (as it is now) to post-security. No more shopping and making merry only to remember you still have to go through a TSA search, then find everyone else had the same thought and now the line is insanely long. Ugh. Too many times.

Another huge bonus: updated technology. "We want to be New York's airline," says Gail Grimmett, Delta's SVP of New York. Being down with the digital stuff is definitely one step towards that. Flyers will find 75% of seating with built-in power outlets (no more seeking out those pole things!), security lines and gates eager to scan mobile boarding passes, and restaurants that understand many diners will eat in the company of their laptop screens. Behind the scenes, your baggage will be ferried away to your plane via an in-line automatic system, replacing manual tagging.

Each of the terminal's four levels are under the knife with this massive renovation, but let's get to the fun part: that Flagship SkyClub. Holy smokes is it huge. We've been in some big SkyClubs before—like the sweet one at Tokyo-Narita—but at 24,000 square feet with "amazing views" and some surprises, it's going to make some frequent Delta flyers very very happy. Plus, those without SkyTeam status will still be able to buy daily passes; no snobbery up here. Even children will have their own lounge, as Delta's unaccompanied minor "SkyZone" gets a big space with video games and toys (outside the SkyClub, naturally).

For regular JFK flyers who worry about connecting between Terminal 2 and this new bit of Terminal 4, fret not. An airside bus will connect the two terminals, so even T2 flyers can enjoy a little T4 fun before jetting off.

As you can probably tell from our photos above, the several construction companies bringing this all together are still hard at work. The Delta airplane tails out the window tease but it won't be too much longer until that 747 to Tokyo across the way pulls up on this side instead.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Please follow Getting There on Twitter and Facebook.

Travelers Say These Are The Best Islands In The World


White Beach, Boracay, Philippines

Earth’s surface is 71 percent water, and our oceans are dotted with spectacular islands — tens of thousands of them — but some capture our imaginations more than others.

See the islands >

In Travel + Leisure’s annual World’s Best survey, readers ranked their favorites, and the results show that no distance is too great when a fabulous island waits as your reward.

Six of the top 10 islands, such as Bali and Santorini, are more than an eight-hour flight from the U.S. Luckily, Americans can also find island paradise literally just offshore — on untamed Vancouver Island (No. 10).

Find out which far-flung island captured the No. 1 ranking and where to find secluded beaches, wildlife encounters, and luxurious pampering.

See the best islands in the world >

More From Travel + Leisure:

Travel + Leisure Best Beaches 2012

America's Best Beach Bars

Best Secret Islands On Earth

#1 Boracay, Philippines

This tiny tropical island in the Philippines is making a big splash. After debuting at No. 4 in the World’s Best Awards last year, Boracay has taken the top prize, appealing to travelers with its natural beauty and still-under-the-radar status — chances are you haven’t “been there, done that.”

Best Beach: White Beach, a 2.5-mile stretch of powder-white sand — often cited as the world’s softest — lapped by the translucent Sulu Sea.

Where to Stay: Discovery Shores for modern suites with huge windows, an infinity pool, and the full-service Terra Spa.

#2 Bali, Indonesia

Bali may be one of 17,500 islands in the Indonesian archipelago, but this paradise known for its temples is the country’s crown jewel, offering travelers glimpses into Balinese Hindu history thanks to a vibrant cultural scene filled with music and dance.

Best Beach: To watch the sun come up over the water, head to Sanur. For gorgeous sunsets, upscale resorts, and lively nightlife, stay along Seminyak. 

Where to Stay: Amandari, the only Indonesian resort ranked in the 2012 T+L 500, is near a sacred river outside Ubud and arranged like a local village — albeit one with 30 suites that feature private plunge pools and rice-paddy views.

#3 Galápagos Islands, Ecuador

T+L readers prove once again that this exotic chain of isolated Pacific islands 600 miles off of South America is one of the ultimate dream trips. Where else can you spy a blue-footed booby or short-feathered penguins other than the Galápagos Islands?

Best Beach: Here, the best beach is where sea lions catch some rays. Snap hordes of them on Santa Fe Island’s white-sand beach.

Where to Stay: The ideal way to see these islands is on a ship, such as the 90-passenger Celebrity Xpedition, which sails seven- and 10-night cruises year-round.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Please follow The Life on Twitter and Facebook.

The Zooka Wireless Bluetooth Speaker


This is the incredibly portable Zooka Wireless Speaker.

Why We Love It: While most speakers need to be plugged into your device to get the amped-up sound you crave, Zooka connects through Bluetooth. The slim tubes sport a rechargeable battery, and have a speaker on each end. It even has a small cutout for your iPad or computer camera if you're chatting with friends on Skype, Facetime or Google+.

And if you want to watch a movie or video on your iPad, there's a convenient kickstand to keep your device hands-free. The Zooka Speakers are also made of silicone, so they're highly durable and easy to travel with or clean.

Zooka Speakers


Zooka Speakers

Where To Buy: Available through Amazon, Nordstrom, or the Apple Store.

Cost: $99.99.

Want to nominate a cool product for Stuff We Love? Send an email to Megan Willett at mwillett@businessinsider.com with "Stuff We Love" in the subject line.

Don't Miss:  The Improved Mujjo Touchscreen Gloves

Please follow The Life on Twitter and Facebook.

Join the conversation about this story »

Here's What A Meal By The Best Chef In France Looks Like


philippe labbee

Philippe Labbe, the executive chef at the Shangri-La hotel in Paris, has earned the honor of being named "France's Chef Of The Year" by the Gault Millau restaurant guide.

Labbe, 51, has been in charge of creating the dishesat L'Abeille restaurant since it opened in 2010.

Under Labbe, L'Abeille has earned two Michelin stars.

A meal at L'Abeile typically runs about $324 a head, according to France Today.

Labbe told the AFP that a dish that typically describes himself is a "just-cooked langoustine with the zest of yuzu fruit, served with a yuzu mayonnaise made with fresh, grilled hazelnuts."

Formerly of Château de Bagnols, Labbe earned a Michelin star there as well.

Take a look at some of his creations:

philippe labbe dish


philippe labbe dish 

philippe labbe dish


philippe labbe restauarant


DON'T MISS: How Hot-Headed Gordon Ramsay Became The Top-Earning Celebrity Chef

Please follow The Life on Twitter and Facebook.

Join the conversation about this story »

This Completely Inoffensive Pink Computer Was Made Just For Women


laptop her fujitsu

Fujitsu announced the launch of a brand new computer that's so easy, even a woman can use it! Meet the "Floral Kiss" — which comes in subtly named shades of Feminine Pink, Elegant White, and Luxury Brown.

And it's about time. I can't count the number of times I've been typing away on my Mac Book Pro and thought, wow, this consumer experience sure would be enhanced if my caps lock key was bedazzled and there was a built-in daily horoscope app. (Shh, my lady brain can't process widgets). This computer comes with both.

Other custom-designed applications — "planned and developed primarily under the direction of female employees" — include a built-in scrapbooking and diary app.

But the pièce de résistance? On top of a floral motif, zirconia adornments, and a power button with a "pearl-like accent," the "team of female engineers" addressed an often-ignored design flaw (emphasis is ours):

"The top casing has been constructed with an elegant and refined gradation with gold trim, and it features a flip latch that can easily open the display—even by users with long fingernails."

I'd applaud Fujitsu, but I refuse to ruin my manicure.

Jezebel's Jenna Sauers dissected the press release and counted that while 134 words were dedicated to Floral Kiss' custom-made "agete" case and 167 to the female-friendly design choices, only 19 words described the laptop's technical attributes.

This is hardly the first unnecessarily gender-specified product.

In May 2011, Nokia announced a bright pink N8 complete with an ELLE fashion app and "“Little Pink Diva Theme for adding some colour into your menus and a great Pink Neon Clock.” (It was advertised with a terrifying commercial starring dismembered Barbies).

Dell also got a lot of flack in 2009 for launching Della, a Dell site for her that offered tips on how to find recipes and count calories.

But it's not just tech products that get the gender normative treatment: Even water and pens fall victim to female-friendly engineering.

What's product will get the "for her" treatment next?

Please follow Advertising on Twitter and Facebook.

Join the conversation about this story »

Here's What You Need To Know About Cashing In Your Old Jewelry


jewelry, diamonds, bangle

These days, the hot trend in flashy jewelry isn't wearing it so much as selling it off.

That's according to Heidi Mitchell's Wall Street Journal article which notes that more women are ditching their cherished heirlooms than ever, thanks to a spike in gold prices, now hovering around $1,800 per ounce. 

"Some people are using the money to pay for mortgages, educations, theatre tickets, vacations, houses, all sorts of things," Andrew Fabrikant, co-founder of Andrew & Peter Fabrikant in New York, told Business Insider, adding they've been "buying larger percentages of an estate than [they] were before the recession." 

"And consider this too," said Carmen Wong Ulrich, president and co-founder of ALTA Wealth Management, "if you have enough jewelry, it can end up costing you just to keep it safe and secure" in a home safe or security deposit box. 

Whatever the situation, consumers have got to be smart before selling. We asked Fabrikant to share his tricks of the trade:

Get an educated opinion. Do this if you're unsure what to sell or can't tell one bauble's worth from another. As a rule, Fabrikant says diamonds over 1 carat will have the most value and notes there's a strong market for "important and recognizable brand names" like Cartier, Tiffany, Van Cleef & Arpel. Diamond and gold bangles remain wildly popular, while broaches have gone out of vogue. And the biggest money-grabbers are still engagement rings. 

Skip the appraisal. "You're paying for a service that doesn't net you any money," said Fabrikant. "If you don't know a diamond's quality, then let the jeweler submit it to the Gemological Institute of America (GIA)." 

Avoid envelope drop-in services. "People with good reputations take the time to let you know the jewelry arrived safely and leave the decision of whether to sell up to you," said Fabrikant. They also won't toy with your profit and ensure the trade's fair. "It's like a gold-buying service," he continued, you wouldn't trust someone who's "basically buying scrap gold but they pay you fractions on the dollar." 

You'll also want to avoid the pawn shop and even an auction house (unless you're a big name celebrity), which charges a 25 percent premium to the buyer and seller, as well as fees if the items don't sell. 

Don't clean or repair items before bringing them in. "The jeweler will do that," said Fabrikant, and you don't want to end up ruining the value. "It's like taking apart an intricate diamond," it's hard to put back together. 

Bring your paperwork to the sale. "If you have a GIA report or a report from another laboratory, bring it with you so there's no question about what you're showing to them," said the jeweler. 

Find a buyer with a great reputation. This counts more than anything, said Fabrikant. You've got to work with someone you trust and should comparison shop before settling on a buyer's price. Though there are plenty of ways to research online, he specifically recommended checking out a jeweler's credentials on the Better Business Bureau.  

Now see three things you need to know before selling gold > 

Please follow Your Money on Twitter and Facebook.

Join the conversation about this story »

Seahawks Running Back Marshawn Lynch Bought This Gorgeous Waterfront Home In California For $3.6 Million


marshawn lynch house

Seattle Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch just purchased a waterfront home in Richmond, Calif. for $3.6 million, according to Zillow.com.

Lynch, who is in his third season with the Seattle Seahawks, is originally from the Oakland, Calif. area.

The veteran NFL player's new home is right on the water and has incredible views. The house is 7,000 square feet and features a wine cellar, movie theater, boat deck, and an elevator. Many of the rooms have floor to ceiling windows looking over the bay.

Here's the front of the house

Check out the floor to ceiling window views

More views in the dining room

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Please follow Sports Page on Twitter and Facebook.

The 10 Best States To Retire In This Year



Ask anyone to name the states most coveted by retirees in the U.S. and chances are high they'd fire off a list of sun magnets on either coast.

But as today's seniors look toward retirement with nest eggs battered by the recession, more thought will go into choosing their final zip code than climate alone.

In a search for the best states to retire, MoneyRates.com's Richard Barrington spent weeks analyzing what he says are the seven key factors seniors should consider: 

Cost of living, property taxes, violent crime rates, climate, life expectancy for seniors, recent population growth in the senior demographic and unemployment. 

"Retirees and young people have very different concerns," Barrington told Business Insider. "Crime's a good example. Older folks are especially vulnerable to crime and they tend to worry about it more." 

10. Texas (Tie)

Texas' warm climate and solid economy have made it "enticing to seniors," Barrington notes.

"However, it's a big state that's not without its trouble spots: The overall crime rate is another one of the nation's 10 worst." 

But for their trouble, seniors enjoy a cost of living that is just over 91 percent of the national average.

Source: MoneyRates' Best And Worst States To Retire

10. California (Tie)

Tying for 10th place, California's struggling economy and high cost of living haven't been enough to deter seniors. 

"California couples a good climate with good life expectancy at age 65: 19.08 years," Barrington says. 

Source: MoneyRates' Best And Worst States To Retire

9. South Dakota

You'd be hard-pressed to find a "Best XYZ State" list these days without South Dakota on it. 

Seniors are overlooking the frigid climate and flocking to the state for its low crime rate and low cost of living. And they're living longer in the process.

"South Dakota had the fourth best life expectancy at age 65, at 19.33 years," Barrington says.

Source: MoneyRates' Best And Worst States To Retire

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Please follow Your Money on Twitter and Facebook.

A Vienna Sushi Restaurant Installed A One-Way Mirror In Its Women's Bathroom


Dots Vienna Restaurant

Dot Experimental Sushi in Vienna has caused some controversy after female patrons became aware that the mirror above the bathroom sinks was actually a one-way looking glass — and men were watching them on the other side.

The restaurant's communications and marketing manager Alexander Khaelssberg told Vienna newspaper Kurier that it's actually an art project and that the clientele at Dot is "young and cosmopolitan" and has no criticism for the "installation."

Yet enough people have complained that the restaurant was forced to put up a warning sign informing women that they are a part of an art project and are facing a one-way mirror.

The installation is the work of artist Alexander Riegler, who explained in an interview with Radio Wien that the purpose of his art was to stimulate a discussion about voyeurism and surveillance in everyday life.

And whether the public agrees with him or not, come January the mirror will be reversed so that women will see men's faces while they stand at the restaurant's urinals.

Meanwhile, Dots is enjoying its newfound publicity by posting a referential photo on Facebook of a male stick figure peering over a stall at a female stick figure.

Don't Miss: Sushi Lunch Is Served In The Pool On Richard Branson's Island

Please follow The Life on Twitter and Facebook.

Join the conversation about this story »

How To Spot A Home That Might Sell Below Its Real Estate Value


Real Estate House

Want to increase your chances of buying a home below current real estate value? Just look for a seller who didn’t listen to his agent.

The best real estate agents encourage their sellers to do whatever it takes to get the home in its absolute best condition before going to market. The better the home shows, the more likely the seller will get top dollar.

Sometimes, this could be as simple as removing personal items or decluttering. Other times, an agent will suggest bigger fixes, such as painting, replacing carpet or upgrading countertops or cabinets. Savvy sellers listen to their agents, make the changes suggested and go to market in top form. That’s not always how it plays out, however.

For any number of reasons, many sellers protest suggested fixes. Either they don’t want to be inconvenienced, don’t believe the fixes will matter or don’t have the financial resources to make it happen. Inevitably, this means the buyer will get a discount on that property.

How to spot a home that might sell below its value

Is there a home for sale in a good neighborhood and in the desired school district that seems to be well-priced but for some reason isn’t selling? This is the home you want to investigate, because chances are the seller didn’t listen to his agent. Specifically, here are some tell-tale signs to look for.

Big furniture or a lot of furniture

Most people don’t buy furniture to use when staging their home. Often a seller may have a lot of furniture in one room, which makes the room look small to potential buyers. Real estate agents and professional home stagers know this all too well. For example, stagers always suggest a small loveseat over a full-blown couch or sectional sofa. Also, in the bedrooms, king beds often take up too much space. So a stager will often push the seller to swap it out for a queen or full-sized bed.

When you enter a house that seems crowded with furniture, imagine the rooms with fewer or smaller pieces. Be aware that plenty of potential buyers won’t get past the sense that the rooms are too small, and they’re likely to move on to a home that feels bigger. In turn, this could give you room to negotiate a good deal with the seller.

Dark rooms

There was a home in West Hartford, CT on a great block, but the interior was dark. Three large French doors in the living room led to a deck, but the doors were stained black, and the carpet was brown. On top of that, the window coverings were big, heavy and overtook the room.

The house sat on the market for months, even though the price wasn’t far off the real estate market value. Here’s why: Every buyer walked in and out because the house was so dark. After the home had been on the market for three months, a smart buyer made an offer $40,000 below asking and ended up getting it.

Before the buyer moved in, he removed the window coverings, stripped the stain on the doors and painted them white, pulled up the old carpet and had the floors stained to a lighter oak. Right away, the dark room became light, bright and welcoming. The buyer’s total cost: $9,000, which instantly added $31,000 to his equity.

Grandma or Bambi staring down from the walls

Buyers are looking to see themselves — and not the current owners — in a home. Too often, however, the seller hasn’t “depersonalized” his home enough, or at all. Even though the listing agent may have told the seller to clear the house of his possessions, the seller may be proud of his accomplishments and resist.

And so potential buyers are treated to walls decorated with diplomas, family photos, awards and trophies. Moose and deer heads hanging on walls are surefire deal killers, especially when the hunting rifle used to kill Bambi is proudly displayed, too. At best, buyers tend to see such highly personal stuff as clutter that takes the focus away from the home. They’re turned off by it all, and they walk away.

They might also be walking away from a great deal. Are the bones of the home good? Does it have the floor plan you like? Are the kitchens and baths in acceptable condition? Is it in the area where you want to live? If you say “yes” to all of these, hang around a little longer. Imagine the home without the seller’s junk. Picture yourself living there, without Bambi.

A good home that doesn’t show well = a great opportunity

Ultimately, sellers who don’t listen to their agents or stagers inadvertently give savvy buyers a discount. For you to see that potential, try to understand as much as you can about why the seller is selling. Look for sellers who have ignored their agent’s advice. While conventional wisdom says that a buyer would be turned off by a home that shows poorly, go against this. Imagine the potential. And then, once the home is yours, make those small changes the seller should have made. Right away, you’ll have a little bit (maybe even a lot) of equity, thanks to the seller.

DON'T MISS: 15 Smart Things You Can Do With $100 >

Please follow Your Money on Twitter and Facebook.

Join the conversation about this story »

HOUSE OF THE DAY: Buy This Romantic French Chateau Mansion In California For $6.995 Million

10 States That Drink The Most Beer


Total consumption of beer in the U.S. has fallen for the third straight year, according to a report published by the Beer Institute, a beer lobbying group.

Since 2008, total beer consumption has fallen by as much as 11% in some states. Americans still, however, consume a massive amount of the foamy beverage—an estimated 6.3 billion gallons in 2011.

Please follow The Life on Twitter and Facebook.

Join the conversation about this story »

Beautiful Photos Show Custom Cars Racing In Utah's Salt Lake Desert


simon davidson photographs bonneville speed week

The remains of a lake in northwest Utah that dried up thousands of years ago, the Bonneville Salt Flats, were rather useless until someone discovered that the flat, smooth ground was the perfect venue for racing cars.

Today, the Salt Flats are a mecca of land speed records and are home to racing events like Bonneville Speed Week and the Bonneville World Finals, both hosted by the Southern California Timing Association.

The stark landscape and amazing cars that come to test their stuff are the subject of a series by photographer Simon Davidson. Davidson, a New Zealander whose work often focuses on car culture, shared the photos with us.

The Salt Flats are part of the Great Salt Lake Desert.

They are surrounded by several small mountain ranges.

They've been the site of motor sporting events since 1912.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Please follow Getting There on Twitter and Facebook.

Pinterest's First Investor Shows Us His 'Disneyland'-Like Long Island Home


brian cohen sans point, ny house tour

Brian Cohen doesn't want you to take his 16,000-square-foot mansion seriously.

You can tell what he means when you visit the labyrinthine Long Island mansion, where every hallway passes through an octagonal center atrium before leading off to a theater, wine cellar and other attractions.

Click here to tour the house >

"It's a little bit like Disneyland," said Cohen, who was the first investor in Pinterest. Currently, Cohen is the CEO of the New York Angels. "The house is meant for fun."

His Sands Point home, near Port Washington, N.Y., is currently on the market for $9.5 million.

Cohen custom-built the house, commandeering the project as his own general contractor. The opportunity presented itself after Cohen sold his company TSI Communications.

"There's a part of me in the house," Cohen said.

The house is equipped with a giant geothermal heat pump, computer-controlled lighting and sound systems, and more than 350 lights designed to prevent Seasonal Affective Disorder.

"It's my own giant laboratory," Cohen said. "I got to experiment. Try all these new things. In 2000, people would walk in an see our flatscreen TVs and just say 'Wow.'"

After 14 months of paying his contractors by the hour — an unheard of practice in the construction business — the house was complete. Cohen, his wife and former business partner Carol, and their three children moved in.

"The kids were giddy," Cohen said. "It's an extraordinary home to find yourself living in as a child."

But when the Cohens' youngest son, Max, left for Arizona State University, the home went on the market and Mr. and Mrs. Cohen moved to an apartment in the West Village.

"My wife and I are both city people, born and raised," Cohen said. "The suburbs are for families. I don't fall in love with things, I fall in love with people. Our house served its purpose ...

"We still use it these days for what I call 'Hallmark moments,' but change is inevitable. A one-bedroom apartment is really all my wife and I need."

Welcome to Sands Point. On the Cohens' two-acre property, there are six landscaping elements. When the family moved in, the town "jokingly" cited them with a landscaping ticket, Cohen said.

The outside of the home is meant to have more of a Hamptons feel, since it's so close to the water. The other homes in the area are more colonial looking.

Upon entering you see the giant staircase that wraps around the octagon atrium. Cohen said he constructed the home this way so as soon as you walk in the door, you can yell up to their children in their bedrooms.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Please follow The Life on Twitter and Facebook.

For $3.995 Million You Can Live In An Almost Exact Replica Of The White House


If you're envious of the iconic real estate that comes with being commander-in-chief of the United States, you now have a chance to live in the White House, too.

Well, sort of.

This $3.995 million home in McLean, Va., is almost an exact replica of the White House. The six-bedroom home just came back on the market after being price chopped from $4.65 million, according to Curbed.

The house boasts 12,000 square feet of living space, a 100-person party room, replicas of the Lincoln and State Rooms as well as the Truman Balcony, and even an "oval" room that could be used as an office.

History lovers might be rejoicing, but we find it very tacky.

white house replica

DON'T MISS: The Largest Historic Homes In America

Please follow The Life on Twitter and Facebook.

Join the conversation about this story »

SPOTTED: Someone Did Their Best To Ruin An Extremely Rare Aston Martin


There's a reason most supercars are red, yellow, or silver: Those colors look good. So it's a mystery as to why the owner of this Aston Martin One-77 went for a brown paint job.

As the name hints, Aston Martin made only 77 models, selling each for a cool $1.7 million. The fact that at least one has already been wrecked makes this all the more upsetting. Fortunately, the color brown is not enough to make the One-77 actually look bad.

The car was spotted in central Beijing and posted on Car News China, which shared it with us.

Have you spotted a rare or unusual way of getting around in your travels? Did you take a photo? Do you like sharing? Let me know via e-mail: adavies@businessinsider.com or on Twitter: @adavies47.

aston martin one-77

SEE MORE: How The Aston Martin DB5 Became The Ultimate 007 Ride

Please follow Getting There on Twitter and Facebook.

Join the conversation about this story »

'Real Housewives' Star Adrienne Maloof Sells Her Beverly Hills Mansion For $20 Million


real housewives adrienne maloof sells $26 million beverly hills home

The "Real Housewives Of Beverly Hills" star Adrienne Maloof has sold her house just a month after putting it on the market, The Wall Street Journal is reporting.

The deal on the Beverly Hills mansion is reportedly closing at $20 million, just $6 million less than the original asking price.

Maloof and her current husband Paul Nassif listed the home because the couple plans to divorce.

The house is a massive 20,000-square-foot abode, with eight bedrooms and 11 bathrooms.

The buyer is reportedly a Los Angeles businessman "who was looking in the neighborhood for a long time and liked the French chateau-style," according to The WSJ.

Tour The 20,000-Square-Foot Estate Of 'Real Housewife' Star Adrienne Maloof Here >

Please follow The Life on Twitter and Facebook.

Join the conversation about this story »

Browsing All 48954 Browse Latest View Live