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Working Fireplaces Increase Home Value

Joseph Coupal - Wednesday, September 14, 2011

If you are remodeling your home or building a new home, be sure to add a fireplace or fireplace insert. A working fireplace adds value to your home, and is considered a plus to home buyers.

Fireplaces and inserts can be fueled by natural gas, pellets, or wood and all these fuel sources have their advantages and disadvantages.

Many homeowners are interested in green heat, or alternative home heating solutions. So pellet and wood fireplace inserts are very desirable. Both pellets and wood are considered renewable energy sources and are economical. You will surely set your home apart when it comes time to sell by talking with potential buyers about the lower home heating bills and higher heating efficiency of your home.

Gas fireplace inserts are generally easier to use with less mess and effort. Controlled by a thermostat or remote control, gas fireplace inserts are convenient and beautiful.

But, whichever fuel source you choose to run your fireplace or fireplace insert, one thing is certain; working fireplaces add atmosphere and ambiance to any home. New home buyers love the idea of a working fireplace, they certainly make your home more enticing.

If you are remodeling for your own enjoyment, a room with a fireplace adds a whole new dimension to entertaining. Click “fireplace inserts” for more information from Fireplace Showcase.

Massachusetts Home Heating Bills will be Costly this Winter

Joseph Coupal - Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Massachusetts households will face higher heating costs this winter. The fuel oil prices have hit their highest summer levels in three years.

Heating oil prices in Massachusetts averaged $3.73 a gallon last month, up $1 from the same time last year, and 31 cents above the average price last winter.

If prices stay where they are, according to an analysis of US Energy Department data, it would boost the average Massachusetts heating bill by about $225 this winter.

Higher energy costs act like a tax, siphoning money that consumers might spend on other goods and services. Discretionary spending goes way down when heating your home and food take precedence.

Where heating oil prices might go remains unclear. Any number of factors could affect the price, including the progress of the economic recovery, global demand for oil, the strength of the dollar, and severity of the winter.

The key factor, of course, is the price of crude oil, which accounts for about 60% of the cost of heating oil. Crude has been particularly volatile over past few months, going above $100 dropping back to $80 and hitting everywhere in between.

No one knows what oil prices are going to do, but there is speculation that they will not come down. Many expect prices to remain high through the winter, rising at least in the early part of the season. Consumers should not expect oil prices to drop.

Original article Boston Globe

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