There's nothing quite like the lure of an open house sign. Granted, you might not be in the neighborhood (or tax bracket) for many of these outstanding properties, but there's still plenty to admire -- even from the comfort of your swivel chair.
From coast to coast, and everything in-between, we lay down the welcome mat at some of the most enticing open houses in the nation.
Open house: Sun., June 3 Price: $1.65 million Property details: It's hard to compete with homes in Honolulu, but this one takes Hawaii's magic to a whole new level. With its "stunning architectural design" and its classic, "old Hawaii" charm, this 2,461-square-foot beachside home is an absolute dream. With a lush garden courtyard, soaring wood ceilings, and airy rooms and living spaces, this three-bedroom home (built in 1977) is down-to-earth yet incredibly luxurious. See inside this property.
Open house: Sun., June 3 Price: $13.5 million Property details: A stunning, completely remodeled hacienda located on over an acre within the exclusive Serra Retreat. Perfect for entertaining, the 3,931-square-foot, three-bedroom home also boasts a two-bedroom guesthouse, a pool, spa and outdoor fireplace. Plus, it's nature-lover-friendly with its lush tropical landscaping, organic vegetable garden, citrus grove and greenhouse. See inside this property.
Open house: Sun., June 3 Price: $1.739 million Property details: We just love this gorgeous Tudor home in Dallas' Stratford Manor. Boasting its original 1927 charm and craftsmanship, the spacious three-bedroom home features soaring ceilings, arched passageways, and the Tudor style's traditional plaster walls. Two downstairs living areas offer views of the home's sprawling pool and massive, landscaped backyard -- perfect for families with children and pets.
Open house: Sat.-Sun., June 2-3 Price: $425,000 Property details: Wildlife and abundant desert vegetation surround this stunning hideaway in Tucson's Foothills neighborhood. The 2,532-square-foot home also features three spacious bedrooms, two bathrooms, and four (yes four!) private outdoor patios. Perfect for entertaining, the outdoor living spaces take full advantage of the home's stunning desert mountain views. Inside, we also love the romantic beehive fireplace, French doors and hand-crafted redwood ceilings. Incredible attention to detail! See inside this property.
Open house: Sun., June 3 Price: $2.125 million Property details: A truly classic, 5,194-square-foot beauty flanked by rolling lawns and towering mature trees on an almost two-acre lot. Inside, the home is just as striking with its hardwood floors, vintage-style furnishings, ornate light fixtures and sophisticated, curving grand staircase. The home features four bedrooms, five bathrooms and a huge chef's kitchen. We love those enormous windows offering views of the incredible nature that surrounds it.
Open house: Sun., June 3 Price: $3.395 million Property details: This grand Queen Anne-style shingled cottage boasts all its original features -- exquisite wood detailing, stained glass windows, seven fireplaces and even its hardwood flooring. The waterfront home's distinctive touches include that grand circular tower and palatial fieldstone porch. We love its huge, grassy, 1-acre lot and private beach. It has five bedrooms and five bathrooms in an interior of more than 3,500 square feet.
Open house: Sun., June 3 Price: $374,900 Property details: We love this beautiful three-bedroom located on an idyllic, tree-canopied lane in the heart of Bremerton. The home boasts a covered front porch, from which you can enjoy views over your rolling front lawn, mature trees and colorful front gardens. Inside, you'll find a spacious family room, a huge office, and three bathrooms. And though all that surrounding nature may make you feel like you're in some kind of country paradise, you're actually only 10 minutes away from shopping in Silverdale! See inside this property.
Spring buying season is here, and it may not have come at a better time for Americans thinking about taking the real estate plunge. Call us sanguine, but market bellwethers seem to suggest that housing's five-year descent has finally come to an end.
With home affordability scraping record heights, now may be the best time to buy in decades, with one caveat: You should look at a home purchase the old-fashioned way -- as an investment in a living space, not a high-performing stock. Home prices are not going to rocket upward, as in the "steroid years."
To celebrate the warm weather (and uptick in home construction and sales that usually accompany it), AOL Real Estate brings you homes on the market with some of the most mouth-watering outdoor entertaining spaces. Click through our galleries to see outdoor features of every stripe, ranging from free-form terraced pools to zen gardens.
Location: Old Greenwich, Conn.
Price: $14.5 million
Sq. Ft.: 8,100
This waterfront mansion in woodsy Greenwich, Conn., is set on the much-coveted Long Island Sound waterfront. Behind its mogul-worthy exterior awaits some stunning outdoor space.
This elegant villa sits behind gargoyle-lined walls, mixing "classic mediterranean architecture with Moorish flair." Amenities include a gourmet kitchen, media room, two-story office and exquisite murals.
The columned, curtain-draped cabana is "second to none," the listing says. It presides over a waterfall, spa, water slide, lounging area and the next logical conclusion for such lavish space: a stage for live entertainment.
Florida has more that its share of luxurious "outdoor rooms" and spaces, and this 8,100-square-foot, palm-guarded mansion is among the best. For the deep-pocketed buyer, it also doesn't hurt that home prices, on average, have fallen 50 percent from their housing-boom peak.
A classic stone and brick home in the historic town of Chattanooga. Great for a large family, it has a master suite featuring a private sitting room, three large bedrooms that share a room with a fireplace and bathroom, and a guest room on each floor.
What sets this entertaining space apart is its nuanced approach to landscaping, which strikes the perfect balance between laissez faire and hands-on. Well-kept garden plots are set against a backdrop of bushy trees. The rich expanse is anchored by a minimalist pool. The home also features a wrap-around patio, fireplace and hot tub.
The home's tiled terrace features a lushly landscaped path, and overlooks a mix of California plant life. A "shade sail" adds some flair to the area, while providing refuge from the blazing San Diego sun.
Shade sails are trending in the world of outdoor decor, architecture and home design website Houzz says. In addition to providing, er, shade, the furnishings "lend a strong, artful, sculptural look," shade designer Tres Jones tells Houzz. We couldn't put it better!
This Texas mansion features exquisite landscaping and an outdoor pool that is surrounded by fragrant Asian plants, including a Chinese fringe tree, olive shrubs, and white star jasmine. Ivy weaves its way through the home's columned pergola.
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