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Troy Segal

Senior editor, Home Lending
  • 30
    years of experience
  • Homeownership/Home Improvement
  • Homebuying
  • Mortgages
  • Housing market
  • Home equity loans/Home equity lines of credit
  • Bachelor of Arts, Harvard University
  • Master of Arts, New York University


About the author

Troy Segal is Senior Editor, Home Lending for Bankrate. She handles topics relating to the physical and financial health of homes, from upkeep and maintenance to building equity and enhancing value. She also edits stories on the finer points of mortgages and home equity loans.

Troy first became interested in money matters at her mother’s knee—as her mother researched Treasury bond interest rates in the business pages of the newspaper. She grew up to become a staff editor at Business Week for six years, where she created a personal finance section, alternating money and wealth management with real estate and home renovation topics. Later, as Social Issues editor, she oversaw cover stories on education, healthcare, and workplace diversity.

Throughout her 30-year career, she has also written and edited articles about investments, taxes, banking, real estate and other financial subjects for Investopedia, Business Insider, Worth, and Entrepreneur. On the lighter lifestyle side, Troy's experience includes covering dining and theater (for Zagat Survey), fashion and clothing design (for Women's Wear Daily), and travel (for Where New York). Even when not on staff, she enjoys exploring all these fields, along with playing tennis and reading vintage mystery novels.

Whether it’s finances or food, Troy is constantly fascinated by the ways in which money and life intersect, and the social and cultural issues reflected in service journalism. She’s a firm believer in the importance of financial literacy.

Troy wants you to know

Home transactions can be traumatic, as I know first-hand. After my father died, I was selling our old home “as is” (in its current condition). I’d accepted an all-cash offer, allowing the buyers a generous (nearly three month) period to inspect the property, plan their renovations, etc. One week before the scheduled closing, they suddenly got scared the house had asbestos. Would I pay for a special inspection, and removal if it were true? Or else, the implication was, the deal was off.

I nearly panicked: Could I afford — financially and emotionally — to put the house back on the market, especially since the prime summer selling season was nearly over? But after a quick look at our purchase-and-sales agreement, clarity returned. “Remind these folks of the contractual facts of life,” I instructed my real estate broker. They had agreed – in writing — to buy the home as is, meaning with no repairs or concessions on my, the seller’s, part. That was our deal. If they reneged now, I would sue them for breach of contract (and win, a real estate attorney told me).

It took a tense few days, but the closing went through as planned. I like to think that my dad — a well-respected lawyer and negotiator— had been guiding me in spirit. But you don’t need supernatural help in home transactions. Just decide what you want, stick to your guns — and get everything in writing.

Your home isn’t just a place to live — it’s often the single most valuable asset you own. So it’s important to know how to maintain it and invest in it, preserving and even increasing its worth. Take care of it, and it can work for you.

— Troy Segal

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