Keep warm and save through winter

In our news this week, see how your current lender stacks up with the latest home loan ratings; environmentally-friendly ways to keep your home warm through winter; and a pillow made specially for fidgeters …

New homes going up

Building work done on multi-unit dwellings rose by almost one-fifth during 2012, according to data released this by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

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Compare and save

Do you have the best home loan for your needs? How would you find out? According to a new report, 133 home loan products have dropped their application fees over the past twelve months...

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Rug up your home

Winter is nearly here and will soon be making its presence felt with rain, snow and chilly winds.

Do you find that no matter how well you heat your house, an icy blast blows in every time someone opens a door? We take a look at how to wrap your home with windcheaters to ward off those chill winds...

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Land sales flowing again

Land sales are improving but not quickly enough to fill the needs of Australia’s growing population, a new report shows.

The HIA-RP Data Residential Land Report provided by the Housing Industry Association and analytics provider RP Data shows a 13.6 per cent lift in residential land sales in the December 2012 quarter.

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The brighter side of greener cities

Recent research has confirmed our suspicion that green is good, especially in urbanised areas.

According to the study by the University of Exeter, UK, living in an urban area with relatively high levels of green space can have a significantly positive impact on well-being (about equal to a third of the impact of being married), along with improving mood and cognitive functioning.

By examining data from a national survey that followed UK households over time, researchers found that individuals reported less mental distress and higher life satisfaction when they were living in greener areas.

Pulling at the seams

Some people can't help but fidget. Nail biting, toe tapping and thread pulling may actually offer nothing but small-scale destruction in return, but these small actions can help people to focus.

Specially for the fidgeters, design group Cool Enough Studio indulges the habit with HUHU, a pillow that has strings hidden in the seams of its cross-hatched exterior. Fiddly fingers can pry their way into any seam and pull out a plush string loop before pushing it back in, helping the user relax without damaging their nails or the patience of those around them.