More options for hose clamp pliers
These Knipex pliers are designed to reduce the risk of slipping.
Knipex Tools introduced a 7 1/4″ size to its series of Spring Hose Clamp Pliers. Knipex offers a variety of Hose Clamp Pliers, all with replaceable rotating tips, making them maneuverable from different angles and easier to use in confined areas. This new pair of pliers features the same rotating tips as the company’s 10″ Hose Clamp Pliers and 10″ Locking Hose Clamp Pliers.
The tips of the hose clamp pliers feature a unique design to reduce chance of slipping off the workpiece when opening hose clamps. With the rotatable tips and a high-leverage design, users can open and move clamps easily from any angle or direction while in hard-to-reach areas.
Distinguished by a push button for fine adjustment, the Hose Clamp Pliers feature 15 positions that ensure a precise fit to suit the most diverse clamp sizes. The pliers have a 2″ working capacity and the additional feature of serrated gripping jaws to easily loosen tight hoses.
The slim head design is ideal for reaching into tight places and the forged, box-joint design provides high stability. The built-in pinch guard protects against blood blisters and finger and hand pinching. The pliers are made from German chrome vanadium electric steel, forged and oil hardened.
“With the newest addition to our line of Hose Clamp Pliers, removing hose clamps has never been easier for small engine applications,” said Todd Shumate, president, Knipex Tools. “With their rotating tips, Knipex’s Hose Clamp Pliers make it quick and simple to maneuver between different angles and positions, even in confined areas.”
Express Kitchens on the move
A fast-growing regional kitchen-cabinet retailer expands in Connecticut.
Hartford, Conn.-based Express Kitchens, which describes itself as the fastest-growing kitchen cabinet retailer in Connecticut and Massachusetts, has expanded its reach in Southington, Conn., with the opening of its new store at Patten Brook Plaza. The company operates 14 stores.
In a press release, CEO of Express Kitchens, Max Kothari, said: “We have been successful in building trust amongst our loyal clients and customers offering supreme quality of kitchen cabinets, countertops and accessories at competitive prices. We are looking to expand our customer base in Connecticut and our new store, at Southington, is a step closer to fulfill our goal. We are excited to be in Southington market.”
Express Kitchens offers its own brand of all-wood Star Cabinetry and the Star Stone brand, offering 4 colors of granite and 8 colors of quartz countertops to its in-stock lineup, “vaulting it ahead of its big-box competitors,” the company claims.
In 2014, Express was recognized by the Forbes Magazine Inner City 100 with a growth rate of 172% over 5 years. To date, Express Kitchens has installed over 22 thousand kitchens in Connecticut and Western Massachusetts.
Express Kitchens has locations in Bridgeport, Brookfield, Hamden, Hartford (2), Newington, New London, Norwalk, Orange, Stamford, Torrington, and Waterbury, Connecticut and West Springfield, Massachusetts.
Home prices keep rising
If you believe that rising home prices act as a lubricant to spending on home improvement, then here’s some good news.
Nationally, the median home value is $217,300, up 8.3 percent over the past year and 8.4 percent above the highest point of the housing bubble. The median home value has surpassed its bubble peak level in 21 of the nation’s 35 largest housing markets. That’s according to the June Zillow Real Estate Market Report.
In fact, a decade after the U.S. housing market crashed, half of the country’s homes have regained the value they lost during the recession, the report says.
[Read the full news release here.]
In places that have seen some of the strongest growth since the market crashed, nearly every home is now more valuable than it was during the boom years. In Denver, the typical home is worth $397,700, which is 65.6 percent higher than its highest point in June 2006. In that market, 99.6 percent of all homes are worth more than they were during the bubble.
While half of the country’s homes have regained all of their lost value, several markets are still trailing in the housing recovery. Despite strong median home-value growth in recent months in Las Vegas – home values have grown at a double-digit pace for 15 consecutive months – less than 1 percent of homes there have fully recovered from the housing bust.
“Even a decade after the 2008 Financial Crisis, and five-plus years into the recovery, it’s clear that the housing boom and bust was felt very differently in various markets – and is still being felt today in many,” said Zillow Senior Economist Aaron Terrazas. “In markets like Las Vegas that got farthest ahead of themselves during the boom, and consequently fell the most, a large majority of homes are still not worth as much today as they were a decade ago. But in markets like Denver that were more stable a decade ago, many more homes are worth more now than ever before. Despite widespread and consistent home value growth today, the scars of the recession still run deep for millions of longer-term U.S. homeowners, and it may take years of growth for their home to regain the value lost a decade ago. And while stabilizing growth in rents is likely a relief for those renters saving to become homeowners, many of those would-be buyers in a number of the nation’s hottest markets will be contending with home prices that are as high as they’ve ever been.”
Rents rose at a 1.3 percent pace over the past year to a median of $1,440. Rent appreciation has slowed nationwide for four straight months and has now been below the overall rate of inflation for two consecutive months.
Riverside and Sacramento saw the greatest annual rent increases among the nation’s largest metros, with rents growing by more than 5 percent in each market.
A limited supply of homes for sale remains a challenge for home shoppers. Inventory was down 4.8 percent from this time a year ago, although the pace of the decline has slowed considerably. In June 2017, inventory was falling at a 12.3 percent annual pace. Atlanta saw the biggest annual decline in inventory, falling 15.7 percent from June 2017.