Posted in home

11 virtual fitness brands vying to compete with Peloton amid pandemic

  • On-demand and virtual fitness has never been more popular, as the pandemic drastically changes the way Americans stay fit. 
  • While Peloton continues to dominate the at-home fitness market, several digital fitness programs — both new and existing — are looking to cash in on the on-demand exercise boom. 
  • We took a closer look at 11 of the most popular virtual fitness membership programs. 
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

 

Gone are the days of traditional gym memberships, as Americans enter the era of the virtual, at-home fitness movement buoyed by the pandemic.

On-demand fitness platforms have never been so popular, nor so ubiquitous. Though digital fitness has been on the rise in recent years, the coronavirus outbreak has put fledgling virtual companies on the map while prompting the rise of a slew of new platforms designed to help Americans stay fit while cooped up at home. 

These programs vary

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Posted in home improvement loans

2 home-buying mistakes I’ve seen during the pandemic

Personal Finance Insider writes about products, strategies, and tips to help you make smart decisions with your money. We may receive a small commission from our partners, like American Express, but our reporting and recommendations are always independent and objective.

In 2008, the housing industry was spiraling out of control in the wake of the financial crisis that led to the Great Recession. For me, it doesn’t feel like very long ago that US housing prices were down 30% or more from their peaks, and more than 20% of homeowners were underwater on their mortgages. 

But what a difference a bull market makes! Fast-forward to 2019, and we know the housing market didn’t just rebound; it looked stronger than ever last year. Although some feared it would only take one triggering event to derail the market again, in 2020 we’ve seen that even a global pandemic that caused havoc elsewhere

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Posted in home

Throughout pandemic, sickle cell patients suffer quietly at home

When emergency rooms began filling with people with Covid-19 in the spring, there was one group of extremely high-risk patients who were too afraid to go.



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People with sickle cell disease frequently need emergency medical care, but during the height of the pandemic, many suffered at home from fear of exposure to the coronavirus. The consequences of that hesitation are only beginning to be known.

Full coverage of the coronavirus outbreak

Emergency departments are “usually, unfortunately, our first access point when it comes to getting treated for pain and other complications” of the disease, Kyle Smith, 31, of Philadelphia, said. But “people with sickle cell disease were terrified to go, even though they were in desperate need of treatment for pain.”



a man wearing a suit and tie: Kyle Smith. (Courtesy Kyle Smith)


© Courtesy Kyle Smith
Kyle Smith. (Courtesy Kyle Smith)

Smith was just a baby when he had his first complication from sickle cell disease.

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Posted in home repair

Southern CT Gas ends non-contract home repair visits due to pandemic


Southern Connecticut Gas has quietly stopped doing what it terms non-contract or “charged” service on natural gas fueled furnaces and other appliances, a move a company spokesman said is designed to protect employees who do the work.

SCG technicians will still make repair calls for customers who have service contracts, according to Ed Crowder, a company spokesman. But for those without a contract, SCG is urging them to call in a plumber or a heating ventilation and air conditioning contractor, Crowder

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Posted in contractions

Queen Elizabeth to honour UK health workers during the pandemic

LONDON – Britain’s Queen Elizabeth will recognise the work of hundreds of doctors, nurses, fundraisers and volunteers during the COVID pandemic when the her annual birthday honours list is published next month.

The list, which was due to be published in June, was postponed in order to add nominations for people playing key roles in the early months of the outbreak. It will be released on Oct. 10.

Britain has recorded the worst death toll in Europe and one of the worst economic contractions of any leading nation since the pandemic took hold in March.

Queen Elizabeth has made very few public appearances during that time but she has delivered a number of rallying messages to the nation and appeared in video conference calls with care workers and members of the military.

The honours have been awarded since Queen Victoria’s reign in the 19th century and aim to recognise not

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Posted in home remodeling

Kingfisher profit boosted as pandemic drives DIY rediscovery

LONDON (Reuters) – The COVID-19 crisis has prompted consumers to rediscover the joy of home improvement, do-it-yourself (DIY) retailer Kingfisher KGF.L said, as it reported a 23% jump in first half profit.

FILE PHOTO: A general view as people queue outside a B&Q DIY store following the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), Watford, Britain, April 26, 2020. REUTERS/Paul Childs

Shares in the group, which owns B&Q and Screwfix in Britain and Castorama and Brico Depot in France and other markets, were up 7% at 0905 GMT on Tuesday, extending 2020 gains to over 30%, after it also said strong second quarter sales had continued.

Like-for-like sales in the second quarter to July 31 soared 19.5% and are up 16.6% in the third quarter so far.

The pandemic has meant people are spending more time at home, they have fewer leisure options and are traveling less.

“The crisis has prompted

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Posted in home improvement loans

How canceled student-loan and mortgage debts could affect your taxes and the secret to selling a home quickly during a pandemic

Hi, MarketWatchers. Don’t miss these top stories:

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‘We only want to start a home that we know will get paid for when it’s completed.’ KB Home CEO Jeffrey Mezger on his approach to the home-building boom

The pandemic has made home buyers more interested in kitchen storage and adding bathrooms for family members living with them.

The Property Brothers share the little extras that make a big difference in a home

“Property Brothers” stars Drew and Jonathan Scott know that people love homes with unexpected extras — and on the latest episode of “Brother vs. Brother,” they reveal which extras matter most.

The secret to selling a house quickly during a pandemic? Good listing photos

There is no perfect time to sell a house—anyone who’s ever put a property on the market will tell you that. Sure, tradition tells us that selling in spring might be ideal. But

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Posted in home improvement loans

US new home sales surge to fastest pace since 2006 as housing market shines through pandemic



a car parked in front of a sign: Associated Press


© Associated Press
Associated Press

  • Sales of new US homes accelerated by 4.8% to an annual rate of 1 million units in August, the Census Bureau reported Thursday.
  • That pace is the highest since 2006 and marks four consecutive months of increasing sales.
  • The agency’s estimate of new homes for sale fell to 282,000, reflecting 3.3 months of supply at the current pace of sales. That’s the shortest period in data going back to 1963.
  • Though the housing market has been one of the few bright spots in the virus-rattled economy, some fear dwindling supply will soon halt the sector’s rally.
  • Visit the Business Insider homepage for more stories.

The US housing market extended its winning streak into August as Americans continued taking advantage of record-low mortgage rates.

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Sales of new homes leaped 4.8% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.01 million units, the Census Bureau announced

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Posted in home

Working From Home in a Pandemic Is Not Shirking It

(Bloomberg Opinion) — Working from home, once jokingly dismissed as “shirking” from home, is back as a pandemic lifeline for economies amid a resurgence of Covid-19 cases in Europe. Governments in Britain and France, having goaded workers back to the office after lockdown, are now urging them home again. The sound of frustrated bosses gritting their teeth can be heard across the City of London, as big firms from Goldman Sachs Group Inc. to Citigroup Inc. pause the back-to-work push while keeping the office open.



a person sitting in a room: No shirking here.


© Bloomberg
No shirking here.

There’s a sense of whiplash among white-collar workers, who just weeks ago were told that it was time to put the economy first and get back to their cubicles and open-plan desks. There should also be palpable relief. Being able to pull in a salary while safe at home is a privilege hospital staff, care workers and supermarket cashiers can’t

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Posted in home improvement loans

Home prices up more than 14% during pandemic in Massachusetts

New real estate data shows that despite the pandemic, real estate prices are experiencing growth not seen since the bubble years of the mid-2000s. After a slow spring, the quest for more personal space during the pandemic has led to single-family home prices climbing more than 14%, according to data compiled by The Warren Group’s August Sales Report.But the communities with the biggest gains are not the usual suspects. For example, Littleton is the Boston suburb with the biggest price increase in August, despite a location that would make a commute into the city more difficult than other suburbs. Home prices there are up 29% compared to a year ago. “People are reacting to wanting less dense places, perhaps to retreat to in times of high infections,” said Timothy Warren, CEO of The Warren Group.According to the sales report, the median price for a single-family home jumped to a record … Read More

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