Florida Capital Named Baby Boomers Favorite

The capital of Florida has been named the favorite U.S. city for baby boomers to retire by a Washington based economics research group.  Tallahassee, Florida won out over 20 other cities considered for the prestigious award as the ideal place to retire. The southern city was selected after researchers considered a combination of factors, including climate, cost of living, available health care and other priorities. The Washington Economics … [Read more...]

2012 Washington Housing Market

Statistics don’t capture the reality of people being dislocated and the lives that are massively changed as a result of the real estate crash. But housing market forecasts do provide a guide-post for people to understand where we are in the cycle. And if you are in Washington state or thinking about relocating there, you are actually in one of the better places in the nation. In the wild-west world of residential real estate the market has … [Read more...]

Foreclosures Show Positive Fall

By Kevin Chiu Foreclosure filings dropped 14% in November experiencing a positive fall as default notices, scheduled bank auctions and bank repossessions hit their lowest level in a year, according to RealtyTrac. However, some of the hardest hit states, including California, Arizona and Massachusetts posted year-over-year increases in November. Foreclosure auctions, the final step in the painful foreclosure process reached a nine month … [Read more...]

Home Inventory Drops to 4-Year Low

By Mike Colpitts Homes listed for sale on the market dropped for the fifth consecutive month, hitting the lowest level in four years. The drop is a positive sign for the housing market, which has seen more home sales in recent months to aid the struggling market. Housing inventory at the end of October dropped 2.2% to 3.33 million existing homes for sale, according to the National Association of Realtors. The inventory represents an … [Read more...]

Real Estate Mortgage Tax Deduction in Jeopardy

By Kevin Chiu Bet you didn’t realize that the mortgage tax deduction is in real jeopardy as a result of Congress pushing through their last minute agreement on the budget? It’s been a quiet little secret in Washington, D.C. real estate circles because elected officials have taken so much heat on the subject. Some think it won’t happen. Others are sure homeowners are about to lose their biggest tax deduction. Thanks to Congress’ new debt … [Read more...]

Credit Downgrade May Trigger Inflation, Slow Home Sales

By Mike Colpitts As the U.S. economy sputters in over-drive to recover from the worst economic crisis since at least the Great Depression, Standard and Poor's downgrade of the economy is likely to re-set mortgage interest rates on millions of adjustable rate mortgages, send the costs of doing business higher and slow home sales, weakening the chances of a recovery in the housing market. The downgrade is also likely to trigger … [Read more...]

Sheila Bair Exits FDIC with Warning

By Kevin Chiu Completing her term as the head of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC) with a last appearance on Capitol Hill, Sheila Bair warned a Washington, D.C. audience to be aware that the financial crisis is rooted in real estate, which is blocking an economic recovery from developing. “The fact that so many residential and commercial properties are currently underwater goes a long way to explaining the continuing weakness of the … [Read more...]

States Outlaw Extra Home Sale Charges

By Kevin Chiu Washington State became the twenty-fifth state in the country to outlaw extra home sale charges to the new owners of homes for 99 years. The action means that half of all U.S. states have now outlawed private transfer fees by adopting new state laws prohibiting their collection. But a federal effort to eliminate the charges may be held-up for years. The fees are often hidden in the small legal print that new homeowners sign as … [Read more...]

Feds Spend More on Housing

By Kevin Chiu Driven by lobbyists, the U.S. government spent more on housing related grants and tax expenditures than energy, transportation and non-profit organizations combined in 2009 despite the collapse of the real estate market, according to a study conducted by the Pew charitable trust research project. The federal government spent about $244 billion on housing-related grants and tax expenditures, which equates to about $2,085 per … [Read more...]

Advantages to Hosting Big Sports, World’s Fair Size Events

By Mike Colpitts Major sporting events and other big attractions that gain media attention like the World's Fair and the Olympics pay-off big dividends for cities that host the venues. Big events also boost communitie's real estate markets. European cities are competing for major entertainment and sporting events to expedite real estate development and investment in the local economy, according to the Urban Land Institute, a non-profit … [Read more...]