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The latest news on Real Estate from Business Insider
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    Marc Lore Tribeca penthouse apartment

    • Walmart's CEO of US e-commerce, Marc Lore, has reportedly purchased a penthouse in an ultra-luxury building in Manhattan for $43.8 million, according to the Wall Street Journal.
    • The building is known for being an enclave of celebrities due to "paparazzi-proof" features like a lower-level parking lot protected by iron gates.
    • The move comes as Walmart focuses more on city dwellers with its e-commerce operations, like the recently announced initiative Jetblack, a personal-shopping service targeted towards "time-strapped urban parents."

    Walmart's head of US e-commerce, Marc Lore, reportedly just splashed out for a large slice of Manhattan real estate.

    Lore recently paid $43.8 million for a penthouse in 443 Greenwich Street, a luxury development in Tribeca, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal that cited two sources familiar with the deal. The penthouse is one of eight in the building, and each carried a high price tag.

    The building has become something of a haven for celebrities thanks to it its "paparazzi-proof" features, which include a lower-level parking garage and interior courtyard. The building has reportedly attracted celebrities like Jennifer Lawrence, Jake Gyllenhaal, and Justin Timberlake. 

    Lore's planting roots in New York City shouldn't come as much of surprise. The startup he founded,, is located just across the river in Hoboken, New Jersey. Walmart bought for $3.3 billion in 2016. Lore then took on the role he plays now as head of Walmart's US e-commerce operations, which has focused more on cities lately.'s focus on urban millennials and Walmart's New York launch of its $600-a-year personal-shopping service, Jetblack, are just a few examples of how the retailer is thinking seriously about courting customers who live in big cities. In 2017, Walmart also acquired Bonobos, which is based in New York and has a largely city-based clientele.

    A spokesperson for Walmart declined to comment on Lore's reported purchase.

    Let's take a look around the building:

    Sarah Jacobs contributed reporting to an earlier version of this article.

    SEE ALSO: Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner are reportedly 'unhappy' with their 7,000-square-foot Washington, DC home and are looking for something bigger — here's where they're currently living

    Welcome to 443 Greenwich Street, an ultra-luxury development in Manhattan's swanky Tribeca neighborhood.

    Built in 1882, the building was originally a book bindery. Today, it's a landmarked building with 53 residential condominiums, including eight penthouses.

    The building has played up its privacy-oriented features to attract buyers looking to lay low. Those features include a lower-level parking garage and a valet stand that's protected by iron gates.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    cerro gordo ghost town

    • Cerro Gordo, an abandoned mining town in Lone Pine, California, that looks straight out of Westworld is currently for sale for just under $1 million.
    • It boasts nearly 300 acres of land, historic buildings, many of which are being restored, and a history that's both violent and rich in economic growth.
    • The ghost town perfectly captures the essence of the Wild Wild West, frozen in time.

    In some wild news from the Wild Wild West, a historic ghost town in Lone Pine, California, is for sale for just under $1 million.

    A 19th-century mining town, Cerro Gordo boasts more than 300 acres of land and 22 buildings, many of which are being restored — and maybe a ghost or two, considering the town's violent history dating back to the 19th century. 

    Established in 1865, Cerro Gordo was once the largest producer of silver and lead in California and helped spur economic growth in Los Angeles. The abandoned settlement is basically a history lover's dream.

    "For those looking to acquire a piece of American West, Cerro Gordo is for you," reads the real estate listing, held by Jake Rasmuson of Bishop Real Estate

    The deserted land of Cerro Gordo looks like something straight out of Westworld. See for yourself in the photos below. 

    SEE ALSO: 30 photos of abandoned amusement parks around the US that will give you the chills

    DON'T MISS: Nobody wants to buy 'Versailles in Manhattan,' a $19.75 million Upper East Side townhouse that has been on and off the market for 15 years

    Cerro Gordo is a 19th-century mining town set in Lone Pine, California, in the Inyo Mountains on 300 acres of land. It's currently for sale for $925,000.

    Source:Mental Floss

    It has 22 structures on site, comprising 24,000 square feet of buildings including a historic hotel, bunkhouse, saloon, chapel, museum, and the Belshaw bunkhouse. Many of the buildings are being restored.

    Source:Mental Floss, Ghost Town for Sale

    Even artifacts are included.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    LA mansion

    • A Los Angeles mansion just went on the market for a potentially record-breaking $135 million.
    • The mansion sits on 5-acres and totals 38,000 square feet.
    • The property includes a full indoor basketball court, 155-foot infinity pool, and parking for 80 cars.

    Los Angeles real estate is known for over-the-top homes with expensive price tags — and one of the newest listings is no exception.

    A 5-acre property in the Beverly Hills-adjacent neighborhood of Beverly Crest just hit the market for a record-breaking $135 million, The Wall Street Journal reported. The home is located on top of a mountain, providing a picturesque canyon view.

    The home was purchased for $22 million just two years ago by developer Gala Asher of Dream Properties in LA. He remodeled the home to include a 5,000-square-foot master suite, indoor basketball court, sports lounge and bar, and a 155-foot infinity pool (the biggest in LA). Coldwell Banker's Ginger Glass holds the listing.

    If sold for its asking price, the home would shatter LA real estate records by $25 million. The current record holder for highest sale price in Los Angeles County is Hard Rock Cafe founder Peter Morton, who sold his Malibu beach house for $110 million earlier this year.

    Scroll down to see the property and all it has to offer.

    SEE ALSO: Inside Los Angeles' most expensive apartment rental — a two-story penthouse with a heated rooftop pool and a $100,000-a-month price tag

    DON'T MISS: The top 10 cities in America where you're most likely to live next door to a millionaire

    The mansion sits on a 5-acre lot and comes with a 155-foot-long heated infinity pool, 10-car garage, two private tennis courts, and a guest house.

    Source: Coldwell Banker, Curbed

    It's located in Beverly Crest's Wallingford Estates and can only be accessed through two private and gated streets.

    Source: Coldwell Banker, Curbed

    Originally, the property was occupied by a home modeled after a French chateau. It was upgraded to include a 5,000-square-foot master suite and seven additional bedrooms.

    Source: Coldwell Banker, Curbed

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    housing construction california

    • Changes in the pace of building permits and housing starts can tell us a lot about the future supply of homes available in the housing market.
    • Building permits have increased 8% since a year ago, and housing starts rose more than 20%.
    •  The gap between housing supply and demand may narrow significantly soon.

    Closing the Housing Stock Gap

    Today’s Census Bureau report sends an optimistic message about the housing market. Building permits increased 8.0 percent since this time last year, while housing starts rose 20.3 percent. The year-over-year increase in housing starts tells us that an increase in new housing supply is on the way. The pace of housing completions, at a 1.29 million seasonally adjusted annualized rate (SAAR), is particularly important as it brings new supply that can offset current housing shortages.

    Housing demand has significantly outstripped supply since 2007, but that gap seems to be closing. We estimate that nearly a million households were created from April 2017 to April 2018, adding to the demand for housing. Helping meet that demand were the 873,000 new housing units completed – the net number of units completed when accounting for single-family dwellings, apartments, manufactured homes and obsolescence. This leaves a shortage of just over 150,000 units today, representing an almost three-year low in the gap between housing supply and demand.

    Looking back, the United States entered the economic crisis with a surplus of housing. That surplus reached its peak of nearly two million units in 2004, which put downward pressure on prices. Due to the large surplus, building slowed substantially and inventory began naturally lessening. Once inventory was substantially reduced, however, building did not increase in time to meet new demand and the pendulum swung the other way. By September 2016 the nation had a housing deficit of nearly 800,000 units – the widest gap between housing completions and household formation in the past 18 years. In that context, the current shortage of 150,000 units represents a major improvement in closing the housing stock gap and meeting the growing demand for shelter.

    New supply added to the housing stock continued to impress in May with a 10.4 percent year-over-year increase in completions. As builders start work on additional housing, we will inch closer to balancing inventory with demand. But with millennials entering household formation age and baby boomers living longer and more independently than ever, builders will remain under pressure to keep up with the growing demand.

    Screen Shot 2018 06 20 at 1.37.14 PM

    May 2018 Housing Starts

    For the month of May 2018, the new residential construction report shows that:

    • The number of building permits issued, a leading indicator of housing starts, increased by 8.0 percent year over year.
    • Housing starts increased by 20.3 percent, compared with a year ago.
    • The stock of housing units authorized to be built increased by 8.2 percent, and the number of housing units under construction increased by 5.3 percent on an annual basis.
    • The number of completed homes, which is additional new net supply added to the housing stock, increased by 10.4 percent compared with a year ago.

    Chief Economist Analysis Highlights

      • The annual increase in permits, housing starts, and completions signals relief from the housing shortage and sends an optimistic message about the housing market.
      • In May, the overall pace of housing starts, at 1.35 million units, is a 5.0 percent increase from the previous month. Based on the less volatile three-month moving average, the volume of total residential (single- and multi-family) housing starts is 18,000 more than April 2018, and 167,000 units higher than a year ago.
      • Housing starts are an important source of future supply as the housing market continues to face a supply constraint problem. (The supply constraint was discussed in our Real House Price Index (RHPI)).
      • An estimated seasonally adjusted annualized rate of 1.29 million housing units were completed in May, representing a 10.4 percent increase from the May 2017 figure of 1.16 million – a modest, yet important, step toward producing enough housing to meet market demand.

    What Insight Does Monthly Housing Start Data Provide?

    Housing starts data reports the number of housing units on which construction has been started in the month reported, providing a gauge of future real estate supply levels. The source of monthly housing starts data is the “New Residential Construction Report” issued by the U.S. Census Bureau jointly with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The data is derived from surveys of homebuilders nationwide, and three metrics are provided: building permits, housing starts and housing completions. Building permits are a leading indicator of housing starts and completions, providing insight into the housing market and overall economic activity in upcoming months. Housing starts reflect the commitment of home builders to new construction, as home builders usually don't start building a house unless they are confident it will sell upon completion. Changes in the pace of housing starts tells us a lot about the future supply of homes available in the housing market. In addition, an increase in housing starts can lead to increases in construction employment, which benefits the overall economy. Once the home is completed and sold, it generates revenue for the home builder and other related industries, and is added to the housing stock.

    SEE ALSO: California's housing market has reached a boiling point, and a typical home costs $600,000

    Join the conversation about this story »

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    Rob Lowe Estate

    • Rob Lowe and his wife Sheryl are selling their 10,000 square-foot estate, listed for $47 million with Sotheby's International Realty.
    • It's in Montecito, California, the area hit with mudslides earlier this year that killed at least 17 people. 
    • The home sits on 3.4 acres of land and has views of the Pacific Ocean and nearby Santa Ynez mountains. 

    "Parks and Recreation" actor Rob Lowe and his jewelry designer wife Sheryl are selling their 3.4-acre estate in Montecito, California, for $47 million, according to a new listing from Sotheby's International Realty.

    The couple bought the land, near Santa Barbara, in 2005 and designed the home from the ground up, recruiting an architect, interior designer, landscape architect, and even a feng shui master. It was inspired by the Virginia countryside where the famous actor grew up and was featured on the cover of Architectural Digest in November 2010. 

    The couple is selling the home because their children are grown and have moved out, they said in statement.

    Earlier this year, the Montecito area was hit with recurring mudslides that destroyed hundreds of homes and resulted in more than a dozen deaths, but Lowe's estate was unharmed, partly due to its elevation. The neighborhood is home to many celebrities including Oprah Winfrey, Ellen DeGeneres, and Jeff Bridges.

    Below, take a tour of the $47 million estate.

    SEE ALSO: A mountaintop mansion with an indoor basketball court and parking for 80 cars just went on the market in Los Angeles for a whopping $135 million

    DON'T MISS: The 35-year-old billionaire president of In-N-Out Burger is selling her California mansion for $19.8 million — here's a look inside

    Actor Rob Lowe and his wife Sheryl listed their Montecito mansion with Sotheby's International Realty for $47 million. They bought the land back in 2005.

    Source: Sotheby's International Realty

    They completed the home in 2009. It was the vision of architect Don Nulty, interior designer David Phoenix, landscape architect Mark Rios, and feng shui specialist David Cho.

    Source: Sotheby's International Realty

    The estate sits on 3.4 acres of land and totals 10,000 square feet of living space, offering ocean and mountain views. "I always wanted that house where everybody wants to go," Lowe told Architectural Digest.

    Sources: Sotheby's International RealtyArchitectural Digest

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    anthony di iora

    Anthony Di Iorio made his fortune as an early adopter of hot cryptocurrencies bitcoin and ethereum. 

    Now, the cryptocurrency billionaire is spending some of his cash on two video game-inspired real estate projects in Toronto. 

    Di Iorio recently purchased two spaces in Toronto. One is a 15,000 square foot office space for his blockchain company Decentral, and the other is a three-story penthouse which will serve as both his home and an experimental private event space — and which cost him $21 million.

    Di Iorio's plans for both spaces are extremely unconventional. At the office space, in particular, he's bringing a sci-fi fantasy to life with holographic receptionists, "moving walls," and secret tunnels, where remote controlled Aston Martins zoom underfoot beneath glass floors.

    Here's a glimpse of Di Iorio's vision for his futuristic office and his gorgeous new home:

    Decentral's new office is located near Lake Ontario's waterfront in Toronto.

    The office isn't ready yet, but we got to see some renderings of what Decentral plans for its office to look like when it's all done. When you first enter the office, you'll be greeted by a hologram receptionist and four different concealed doors.

    The hologram receptionist will ask a question, and how you answer determines which door will swing open. They haven't decided yet what that question will actually be, but the company likes the idea.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    mission district, san francisco, hipster, tacolicious

    • Housing in San Francisco is so costly, restaurant workers are leaving the city for more affordable regions, according to a report in The New York Times.
    • Some of the city's restaurants can't find — or can't afford — front-of-house workers. They're finding solutions for operating without helping hands.
    • Some restaurant that look like full-service spots have diners seat themselves, fetch their own water, bus their table, and more.


    There's something different about San Francisco's restaurant scene these days.

    Its workers are vanishing.

    A new report in The New York Times posits that in San Francisco, one of the most expensive cities in America, rising rents and labor costs have forced some restaurants to go without servers. In their absence, diners at popular restaurants such as Souvla and RT Rotisserie seat themselves, fetch their own water, bus their table, and more.

    Restauranteurs call it the "fast-fine" or "fine-casual" model of dining.

    Part of the problem is that restaurant owners can no longer afford staffing their front-of-house. Commercial rent prices have soared alongside housing costs.

    But the Bay Area also faces a dire shortage of restaurant workers, as those who can't afford to live near their place of work move away to more affordable regions.

    Restaurant workers in San Francisco earned a median income of just over $30,000 in 2017. That makes them some of the highest-paid restaurant workers in America, according to a study by real-estate site Trulia. But their income still isn't enough to buy a home.

    Approximately 0.1% of homes on the market are affordable for the city's restaurant workers, Trulia found. The median list price in San Francisco was $1.477 million at the time the study was conducted. By comparison, restaurant workers in Detroit can afford 50% of homes on the market, while only 2% of homes are affordable in New York.

    "We can sit around here, and we can complain and whine and moan," said Charles Bililies, owner of Greek restaurant Souvla. "We can be very negative about this."

    "Or we can sort of turn this on its head and see an opportunity," he told the Times.

    san francisco restaurant souvla 2

    At Souvla, the counter-service restaurant has the look of a full-service spot. Diners sit at copper tables and wood counters under the windows, which flood the airy, high-ceilinged dining room with natural light. Copper pans and fresh herb sprigs hang on the walls.

    A simple menu offers just two entrées — a sandwich and a salad — made with diner's choice of meat or vegetables. Prices range between $12 and $15 a plate.

    There are no servers at Souvla, though runners do bring food to your table.

    "Souvla was the beginning of this whole new onslaught of things that in every single way look like a full-service restaurant — nice décor; good wine list; tasty, healthy foods. It's much more chef- and ingredient-driven," Gwyneth Borden, the executive director of the Golden Gate Restaurant Association, told the Times. "But it's 'take a number and go to a table.'"

    It's worth noting that the counter-service model is fairly common outside the US, in places like the UK, Norway, New Zealand, and plenty other nations.

    One restaurant in San Francisco has hatched a more surprising way to operate without restaurant workers. The buzzy new burger joint, Creator, which soft-opens for lunch on Wednesday, uses a robot to prep, cook, and assemble hamburgers with no human help.

    Founded in 2009, the startup formerly known as Momentum Machines has been quietly tinkering with its mechanical line cook out of a vacant retail space in SoMa for almost two years. Its robot uses an array of sensors and computers and makes up to 130 burgers an hour.

    It eliminates the need for line cooks, though as many as nine "robot attendants" will be on the floor to take orders, deliver burgers and drinks, and restock ingredients.

    Creator isn't the only restaurant putting robots to work. Cafe X relies on a robotic coffee bar to take your order and make your drink — no human interaction required.

    SEE ALSO: This robot-powered burger restaurant says it's paying employees $16 an hour to read educational books while the bot does the work

    Join the conversation about this story »

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    $250 million bel air house

    • An over-the-top property in the Bel Air neighborhood of Los Angeles was relisted for $188 million in April.
    • It was originally listed for $250 million in January 2017.
    • Luxury developer Bruce Makowsky, who calls himself the "spec king," developed the property.

    In January 2017, a new home built on speculation in the Bel Air neighborhood of Los Angeles appeared on the market, asking an earth-shattering $250 million. According to its website, that made it the most expensive home ever listed in the United States.

    Fast forward to April 2018, and that home has returned to the market with a reduced price. It's now listed by Hilton & Hyland for $188 million. It no longer boasts the title of most expensive on the market, but with a price that high, it is certainly up there.

    And it really is unlike any other home on the market. The mansion is built in a contemporary style, with stark geometry and huge plate-glass windows.

    The home also comes outfitted with furniture, but it's not your standard Restoration Hardware package. It seems it was built with a very specific person in mind: a person who likes decommissioned decorative helicopters, gigantic Leica camera sculptures, velvet-roped lounge areas, and plush decorations that were purchased from Hermès.

    As for the living spaces, there are two master suites, 10 "oversized VIP" suites for guests, 21 bathrooms, three separate and fully equipped kitchens, and no fewer than five bars.

    It was built by the luxury developer Bruce Makowsky, whom the release refers to as the "spec king." He was also the mastermind behind the $70 million Beverly Hills house sold to Minecraft founder Markus "Notch" Persson in 2014.

    Take a look around:

    SEE ALSO: Walmart's e-commerce CEO reportedly just dropped $43 million on a penthouse in a 'paparazzi-proof' building filled with celebrities. Take a look inside.

    The sheer footprint of the mansion, spread across 38,000 square feet, is a sight to behold. The exterior decks alone are 17,000 square feet. Downstairs is a car park filled with over $30 million worth of collectible automobiles — all of which are included in the purchase.

    Situated on a hill, the house has a 270-degree view overlooking the LA area — one of its defining features.

    Inside is where things get a little bit funky. The decor is not your typical boilerplate luxe style.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    eye of the storm dome house south carolina 20

    South Carolina's infamous dome-shaped home, dubbed "The Eye of the Storm," has been listed for sale for the first time ever with a $5 million price tag.

    The four-level, 4,047-square-foot home at 2851 Marshall Boulevard in Sullivan's Island was built in 1991 and was designed with the proximity of Mother Nature in mind. Its features render the abode heavily resistant to hurricanes, hence the house's name.

    Pareto Group realtor Michael Royal, who is also the nephew of the home's designer, told Business Insider that the home's otherworldly shape has given it another nickname among locals: "The Star Wars Home."

    Take a look inside:

    SEE ALSO: A boat architect modeled his 250-square-foot tiny home after a lunar lander and it's just as cool as it sounds

    The home sits on the northeastern part of Sullivan's Island, a town and island about 20 minutes away from Charleston.

    A maritime forest spans out from it before eventually breaking into the sandy South Carolina sea shore.

    The story behind the dome-shaped "Eye of the Storm" home started with Hurricane Hugo in 1989.

    Dome-home aficionado and designer George Paul built the abode in 1991 after Hurricane Hugo took out his parents' house. They wanted a home that would be invincible to the elements so that they "would have peace of mind for the rest of their lives," according to the listing.

    What resulted was the white concrete and steel shell of a home that can withstand deadly hurricanes coming in from the Atlantic.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Real estate mortgages

    • Housing prices have been rising amid increasing demand and falling supply.
    • Still, consumer home-buying power is holding up on the Real House Price Index.
    • This signals that real house prices aren't even close to their near-term peak. 

    The Real House Price Index (RHPI) views house prices in relation to consumer house-buying power, incorporating household income, mortgage rates, and an unadjusted house price index. When incomes rise, consumer house-buying power increases. When mortgage rates or house prices rise, consumer house-buying power declines.

    In April 2018, increases in all three of these areas drove an 8.8 percent increase in the Real House Price Index from its year-earlier level, marking a significant decline in affordability. Mortgage rates rose by 6.6 percent, while the unadjusted house price index increased by 10.4 percent. Household income, which contributes positively to housing affordability, however, increased 2.9 percent compared with a year ago in April.

    “Though unadjusted house prices have risen to record highs, consumer house-buying power stands at near-historic levels, as well, signaling that real house prices aren’t even close to their historical peak,” says Chief Economist Mark Fleming.

    It is not surprising that unadjusted house prices have increased so much. Demand for residential real estate, along with a nationwide shortage of supply, has led to a historically tight inventory of homes for sale, which leads to quickly rising house prices. However, trends show that the increase in consumer house-buying power has outpaced the rise in unadjusted house prices.

    When house prices are adjusted for consumer house-buying power, the real level of house prices becomes more apparent. Real, consumer house-buying power adjusted house prices today are 32.1 percent below their peak in July 2006, and 8.9 percent below their level in the year 2000.

    Unadjusted house prices are 9.2 percent above the housing boom peak in 2007, and have been on the rise since the end of 2011, nearly a seven-year run. But consumer house-buying power has increased by more than five times as much - 51 percent - since the housing boom peak in 2007 and is up 16 percent since the end of 2011.

    House-buying power, how much one can buy based on changes in income and interest rates, has benefited in recent years from a decline in mortgage rates and the more recent slow, but steady, growth of household income. Between the peak of unadjusted house prices in 2007 and this April, the 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage has fallen from 6.29 percent to 4.47 percent. Over the same period, household income has increased 23.7 percent. Lower mortgage rates and higher income levels mean consumers have significantly higher house-buying power today than they did in 2007.

    Screen Shot 2018 06 26 at 2.03.23 PM

    SEE ALSO: Global markets are flashing a new ominous signal that investors are bracing for the worst

    Join the conversation about this story »

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    palo alto home scott mcNealy 100 million dollars sun microsystems 8

    The most expensive listed Bay Area home within the last decade is currently for sale for nearly $100 million, with extensive and plentiful amenities to match.

    Originally reported by The Wall Street Journal, the 32,000-square-foot home at 610 Los Trancos Rd in Palo Alto, Calif., belongs to Scott McNealy, who co-founded the computer company Sun Microsystems before Oracle bought it in 2010 for $7.4 billion. 

    He purchased the first part of the home's 13-acre lot in the mid-1980s before having the gargantuan home built in 2008. He, his wife and their four sons have lived there ever since, but now that the parents are empty nesters, “the house deserves more activity," McNealy told The Wall Street Journal.

    Take a look inside the 20-room, four-story house.

    SEE ALSO: This $30 million San Francisco mansion, once owned by Vanessa Getty, is one of the city's most expensive homes — take a look inside

    The monumental home is nothing short of extravagant, as reflected in its $96.8 million price tag.

    At nearly $100 million, it's the most expensive home listed in the Bay Area in the last ten years, according to a spokesperson for the realtor. If it sells for above $47.5 million, the price of a Belvedere, Calif., mansion sold in August of 2015, it will officially be the most expensive Bay Area home sold in the last decade.

    The home boasts 20 rooms, two fireplaces and a pool — and that's just scratching the surface.

    Homeowners and guests enter the home through an entryway.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    new york nyc empire state building

    • Investors are buying New York City condos to rent out instead of live in at a record pace, according to Bloomberg, citing StreetEasy data. 
    • The three buildings that generated the most investor interest were in Brooklyn and Queens, showing that investors don't only have their eyes on Manhattan. 
    • Builders of higher-end homes are under pressure to lower prices and speed up sales, which should give more negotiating power to buyers with bigger budgets. 

    People are buying up New York City condos and turning them into rentals like never before.

    Last year, 1,313 condos were purchased as investments instead of residences, according to data compiled by listings website StreetEasy and cited by Bloomberg. That's the highest since StreetEasy started keeping track in 2010. 

    The buyers are betting that property values in America's most-populated city will continue to appreciate, even though the pace of rent growth is slowing down. 

    A separate StreetEasy analysis published late last year found that studio apartments generated more income per dollar invested than one, two, or three-bedroom apartments. In general, more expensive properties returned less; apartments that cost under $750,000 yielded a median 3.3% return, while those that cost over $3 million yielded 2.6%. 

    As Bloomberg's Oshrat Carmiel reported, investors don't only have their eyes on Manhattan, the city's most populous borough. The three buildings that generated the most investor interest were in Brooklyn and Queens. 

    These buyers could be coming in at an advantageous time when lots of new buildings are shooting up across the city. StreetEasy found that in May, the inventory of homes in the city reached an all-time high. Although it's typical for many homes to get listed before the busy home-shopping season, the spike this year was more than usual.

    In addition, buyers are in a good position to score a discount, because that's one way builders can get their properties off the market faster. Even though more condos were available in May, sales dipped for a third straight month, according to StreetEasy. 

    "More affordable homes are the hardest to find, and are sure to sell quickly," Grant Long, StreetEasy's senior economist, said in a report. "But higher-end homes, particularly those joining the market from the ongoing stream of new development, will be pressured to lower prices or linger on the market. This summer is poised to offer an excellent negotiating opportunity for buyers with big budgets." 

    Head over to Bloomberg for the full story »

    SEE ALSO: Housing affordability in America is its worst in nearly a decade, and there's one clear culprit

    Join the conversation about this story »

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    Taylor Swift house

    • Some of the world's biggest celebrities have used their enormous net worths to invest in real estate.
    • Ellen DeGeneres has become known for her house flipping expertise. She has earned millions over the years selling properties to fellow celebrities.
    • Tyra Banks, who has been notably frugal in the past, was advised by her accountants to start spending more of her earnings: Now she owns four properties in Los Angeles alone.

    What do you do when you're a celebrity making more money than you can keep track of? Buy houses!

    While some celebrities enjoy spending their money on ridiculous things, like hand carved bathtubs and dog villas, others choose to play the long game, investing their ample funds into real estate.

    Taylor Swift, Tyra Banks, and Leonardo DiCaprio are just a few famous faces who have veritable real estate empires.

    Keep scrolling to see who else spends their money on property.

    Ashton Kutcher is continuing to add to his list of multi-million dollar residences in Southern California.

    When Ashton Kutcher purchased his first home, he said it was the scariest financial decision he's ever made.

    Today, the actor owns several multimillion dollar homes in Southern California with his wife, Mila Kunis, including a $10 million beach house in Carpinteria, and a $10.2 million primary residence in the Beverly Hills Post Office neighborhood.

    Taylor Swift owns at least $84 million in real estate across four states.

    Taylor Swift has been collecting properties across the United States since she was 20 years old. In 2009, she purchased a condo in Nashville's Music Row worth an estimated $3 million. Two years later, she bought an estate in the city that boasts a pool and a 2,000-square-foot guesthouse in addition to a $3.97 million Beverly Hills mansion.

    It doesn't end there. In 2013, Swift purchased a $17.75 million mansion in Rhode Island, followed by a $20 million duplex penthouse apartment in New York in 2014, and a $25 million Beverly Hills mansion in 2015.

    Seems like she outgrew her duplex penthouse in New York, considering she bought an $18 million dollar apartment directly next door to it, and a $9.75 million dollar apartment on the same block soon thereafter.

    Leonardo DiCaprio owns property on the East and West Coast — plus an entire island.

    Leonardo DiCaprio has amassed a huge collection of properties since the '90s.

    In 1994, he purchased a compound in Hollywood Hills from Madonna for $2 million, followed by a beach bungalow near Carbon Beach in California four years later for about the same cost. Both of these properties have been on and off the rental market ever since. 

    Some years later, in 2005, DiCaprio bought an entire island off the coast of Belize for $1.75 million, on which he is developing an eco-resort set to open sometime this year. An avid environmentalist, the actor is also launching initiatives to help protect the island and its ecosystem. 

    More recently, DiCaprio purchased a $3.67 million apartment in a luxury building in New York, then bought another unit in the same building for $8 million in 2014. That same year, he acquired a $5.2 million dollar house in Palm Springs, followed by a 'small' home in Malibu for $23 million. His most recent purchase was a Tudor in Los Feliz for $4.9 million.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    home for sale

    • Housing prices across the US spiked more than 6% in April from a year earlier.
    • Seattle and other metro areas saw historic rises in home prices. 
    • The only sector of the Case-Shiller index that saw prices fall was New York City condos.

    Historic spikes in Seattle and other metros. But New York condos skid.

    Prices of houses and condos across the US surged 6.4% in April from a year earlier (not seasonally-adjusted), and a sharp 1% from March, according to the S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller National Home Price Index, released this morning. The index is now 8.8% above the nutty peak of “Housing Bubble 1” in July 2006 just before it collapsed, and 50% above the trough of “Housing Bust 1.” Note the disproportionate spike in April:

    Screen Shot 2018 06 27 at 1.43.52 PM

    That 8.8% increase since the peak of the last housing bubble — “Housing Bubble 1” in this millennium — isn’t an increase over some state of languish that the housing market needed to exceed. It was the peak of the definitive housing bubble that then collapsed and helped push the global financial system to the brink.

    Real estate is local though prices are impacted by national and global factors, such as monetary policies and offshore investors for whom “housing” in the US is an asset class and in many cases also escape route. These local and global factors inflate local housing bubbles. When enough local housing bubbles come together at the same time, even as some other housing markets remain calm, they turn into a national housing bubble, as illustrated in the chart above.

    The Case-Shiller Index is based on a rolling three-month average; today’s release is for February, March, and April. The index is  based on “home price sales pairs,” comparing the sales price of a home in the current month to the last transaction of the same home years earlier. The index incorporates other factors and uses algorithms to arrive at each data point. It was set at 100 for January 2000; hence an index value of 200 means prices as figured by the index have doubled.

    So here are the most splendid housing bubbles in major metro areas in the US:


    The Case-Shiller home price index for the Boston metro jumped nearly 2% from the prior month and is up 6.9% from a year ago. During Housing Bubble 1, from January 2000 to October 2005, the index soared 82% before dropping. It now tops that crazy peak by 16.7%. Note the phenomenal 4-point spike in April, the largest such spike in the Boston data series:

    Screen Shot 2018 06 27 at 1.44.51 PM


    The Seattle metro index spiked 2.5% from the prior month. In terms of points, the index jumped 6.6 points, the biggest monthly jump in the data series. The index has now jumped 13.1% from a year ago and is 31% above the peak of Seattle’s insane Housing Bubble 1 (July 2007). Note the historic spike in April:

    Screen Shot 2018 06 27 at 1.45.35 PM


    The index for the Denver metro jumped 1.2% from March, the 30th monthly increase in a row, is up 8.6% from a year ago, and 52% from the crazy peak in July 2006, with a historic spike in April:

    Screen Shot 2018 06 27 at 1.46.09 PM

    Dallas-Fort Worth:

    The Case-Shiller home price index for the Dallas-Fort Worth metro rose 0.9% from March, its 51st relentless monthly increase in a row, and 5.7% from a year ago. Since its peak during Housing Bubble 1 in June 2007, the index has surged 46%:

    Screen Shot 2018 06 27 at 1.46.42 PM


    The Atlanta metro index rose 0.8% from March and 5.5% from a year earlier. It now exceeds the peak of Housing Bubble 1 in July 2007 by 5.8%:

    Screen Shot 2018 06 27 at 1.47.44 PM


    The Case-Shiller home price index for the Portland metro jumped 1% from a month ago, 5.9% from a year earlier, and 23% from Portland’s nutty peak of Housing Bubble 1 in July 2007. It has ballooned 130% since 2000:

    Screen Shot 2018 06 27 at 1.48.23 PM

    San Francisco Bay Area:

    The index for “San Francisco” includes the counties of San Francisco, Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, and San Mateo, a large and diverse area consisting of the city of San Francisco, the northern part of Silicon Valley (San Mateo county), part of the East Bay and part of the North Bay. The index jumped 1% from March, 11% from a year ago, and 38% from the insane peak of Housing Bubble 1. It’s up 164% since 2000. Note the spike in April:

    Screen Shot 2018 06 27 at 1.48.57 PM

    Los Angeles:

    The Los Angeles metro index in April rose 0.8% from March and 8.2% year-over-year. Between January 2000 and July 2006, the index had skyrocketed 174%, then it crashed. The index now exceeds the peak of Housing Bubble 1 in 2006 by 2.4%. The index for San Diego is practically a mirror image.

    Screen Shot 2018 06 27 at 1.49.37 PM

    New York City Condos:

    Oh boy, no spike! On this page, the index for condos in New York City is the only index that fell in April from March, down 0.5%. With all the spikes in the other metros, this is practically refreshing. But this index has produced many monthly dips over the years, some of them a lot steeper, that turned out to be blips. The index rose “only” 2.7% from a year earlier and is now 18.5% above the peak of Housing Bubble 1, having surged 175% since 2000:

    Screen Shot 2018 06 27 at 1.50.12 PM

    So the index is getting spiky in a number of metros. But Seattle’s beautiful spike is unequaled in the series. These indices get adjusted over the next few months as more data becomes available, so some of the spikes might get toned down a little. This happened before. Or they might get adjusted upwardly. But as it stands, there was a sharp acceleration in some cities over the rolling three-month period for “April” (February, March, April). Some of this may have been driven by home buyers trying to “lock in” mortgage rates before they rise even further.

    SEE ALSO: People are buying up New York City condos as investments like never before

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    san francisco

    • Bubbles are forming in housing markets in cities all over the US. 
    • Rental prices are soaring 10-15% in many markets.
    • Meanwhile, they are sharply lower in bigger cities like New York City and Washington.

    Median asking rent for one-bedroom apartments across the US rose 4% in June compared to a year ago, to $1,209. And for a two-bedroom, it rose 3.7% to $1,442. But these averaged-out national figures gathered from advertised for-rent apartments in multifamily buildings hide the city-by-city drama on the ground, with rents plunging in some of the largest and most expensive metros but soaring by the 10% to 15% in many other cities. People feel either some relief or horrendous rent inflation, depending on where they live. So here we go.

    In New York City, the median asking rent in June for a 1-BR dropped 3.1% from a year ago to $2,860 and is down 15.1% from the peak in March 2016. “Median” means half of the rents are higher, and half are lower. For a 2-BR, the median asking rent dropped 3.9% from a year ago to $3,220 and is down 19.1% from the peak in March 2016.

    Rents in New York had long been the second-highest in the country, after San Francisco. But last month, the median 2-BR asking rent was surpassed for the first time by Los Angeles, due to two factors: plunging rents in New York and soaring rents in Los Angeles.

    These are median asking rents in multifamily apartment buildings, including new construction, as they appeared in active listings in cities across the US, collected by Zumper. These rents do not include “concessions,” such as “1 month free” or “2 months free.” Single-family houses for rent are also not included, as are studios and units with more than two bedrooms. Zumper releases the data in its National Rent Report.

    Chicago rents are in freefall. The median 1-BR asking rent plunged 10.2% in June from a year ago, to $1,500, and is down 26.8% from the peak in October 2015. For a 2-BR, it plunged 15.8% and is down a breath-taking 31.7% from the peak in September 2015.

    Chicago is in a special category in terms of big cities: There has been plenty of new construction in recent years, but the population has been declining as tax burdens are growing while the city is tottering very slowly toward what may become the largest municipal bankruptcy filing in the US.

    In Honolulu, the median asking rent for 1-BR fell 5.6% year-over-year in June to $1,700 and is down 20.2% from the peak in March 2015. For a 2-BR, it fell 4.3% to $2,200 and is down 25.4% from the peak in January 2015.

    Washington DC rents are suddenly coming unglued: 1-BR rents fell 2.3% year-over-year to $2,160 and are down 7.7% from their peak just last December. And the 2-BR rent has plunged 15.8% from last June, which was their peak. That was fast.

    San Francisco remains the most expensive major rental market in the US. The median asking rent for a 1-BR apartment rose 1.4% year-over-year to $3,500 in June, but is down 4.6% from the peak in October 2015. For a 2-BR, it rose 4.0% to $4,680 but remains down 6.4% from the peak in October 2015.

    There’s no shortage of supply in San Francisco. Zillow lists 1,613 apartments for rent at the moment, up 45% from the 1,149 listed in August 2016. But it’s the wrong supply.

    The cheapest unit with bath listed on Zillow today — not counting rooms without bath, shared rooms with bunks, and the like — is a basic studio in the Mission Dolores area, for $1,195. And then it goes from here:

    • Only 59 units with an asking rent of less than $2,000.
    • 353 units with asking rents between $2,000 and $3,000.
    • 1,180 units with rents over $5,000.

    In other words, 73% of the apartments listed for rent on Zillow have asking rents of over $5,000! But these units include condos for rent, which tend to be high-end, plus 3-BR and larger units. Neither condos-for-rent nor 3-BR and larger are included in Zumper’s data. The median asking rent (half of the rents are higher, and half are lower) for all units listed on Zillow would be over $5,000.

    Hence our local term, “Housing Crisis” — a crisis of affordability, not availability.

    The table below shows the 16 of the 100 most expensive major rental markets in the US. The shaded area shows peak rents and the movements since then. The black bold “0%” in the shaded area means that these markets set new records in June. Note: If rents are down by a few bucks from the peak a few months ago, and red, it doesn’t yet mean that the market has turned – a turning point would require more prolonged data.

    Screen Shot 2018 07 02 at 3.03.43 PM

    Seattle stands on its own in terms of a construction boom producing an onslaught of high-end rental supply that the market has now trouble swallowing, even as affordability as become a crisis. I discussed this yesterday [Is This Going to Crush Rents in Seattle?]

    Despite this phenomenal supply, Seattle’s median 1-BR asking rent matched the record set in May ($1,990), even as 2-BR rents remain down 4.5% from the peak in April 2016.

    In Southern California, the rental market is going completely nuts. The area has five cities on the above list: Los Angeles, San Diego, Santa Ana, Anaheim, and Long Beach. In four of them, rents have jumped between 10% and 15% from a year ago.

    Of the three Bay Area cities on the list, rents are down from the respective peaks in all three: San Francisco, Oakland, and in San Jose. In the latter, they’re barely down from the peak, not enough to pass judgement. But rents in Oakland have dropped between 13% and 15% from their respective peaks. This was once the red-hot market for San Francisco’s rent-refugees, but it is cooling off.

    The table below shows Zumper’s list of the 100 most expensive major rental markets in the US, in order of median asking rent for 1-BR apartments in June, and percentage changes from a year ago.

    Many of the less expensive rental markets have double-digit year-over rent increases. In fact, of the 35 cheapest rental markets at the bottom of the list, 1-BR rents jumped by 10% or more in 24 of them, and by 15% or more in 11 of them (a third!). In the 2-BR arena, it’s similar: Of the 35 cheapest markets on the list, 21 had double-digit rent increases and seven of them over 15%. And for renters living those markets, it’s really tough; for them, none of the averaged-out national numbers make any sense (use the browser search box to find a city).

    Screen Shot 2018 07 02 at 3.04.39 PM

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    Screen Shot 2018 07 02 at 3.07.04 PM

    SEE ALSO: People are buying up New York City condos as investments like never before

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    san francisco painted ladies city scape homes

    • San Francisco's median house price rose by $205,000 in the first half of 2018, as iterated in a mid-year report by real estate agency Paragon.
    • The price swell is one of the city's biggest in its history, sending the average home price in the city to a whopping $1.62 million.
    • There's a direct correlation between these price hikes and the tech industry's ever-expanding presence in the Silicon Valley region.

    San Francisco's median house price rose by $205,000 in the first half of 2018, according to a mid-year report by real estate agency Paragon. The swell is one of the city's biggest in its history.

    The rise in median home value now makes the average price for a house in the city a whopping $1.62 million, at a time when the average income of a San Franciscan household clocks in at $118,400, according to The East Bay Times.

    There's a direct correlation between these price hikes and the tech industry's ever-expanding presence in the Silicon Valley region in recent years. Tech behemoths like Google, Facebook and Apple operate out of the Bay Area and recruit a lofty volume of high-earning workers that need to find living quarters here.

    These workers' high salaries, combined with the city's already dwindled housing supply, have spawned an affordability crisis within the real estate market, jacking up home values to an astronomical degree.

    Read the full Paragon report here.

    SEE ALSO: Silicon Valley's housing crisis is so dire that this 897-square-foot Palo Alto home is selling for $2.59 million — take a look inside

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    jerome powell

    • Homeownership rates in the US continue to fall below potential. 
    • But rising rates aren't weighing on demand for homes — even for millennials.
    • It is possible millennials are not rejecting homeownership, but rather delaying it.

    As we reflect on our country’s recent Independence Day commemoration, we find that the desire to achieve the American dream of homeownership still exists. Because, while the U.S. homeownership rate remains close to half-century lows, demand is strong, especially among millennials. In fact, results of our Real Estate Sentiment Index survey of title agents and real estate professionals conducted in the second quarter of 2018 showed nearly 87 percent of first-time home buyers were in the prime home-buying age of 26 to 35, which corresponds with the ages of millennials.

    When considering homeownership rates, it’s important to note that traditional measures do not account for shifts in underlying demographic or economic factors. Instead, they report only the share of households that are homeowners. Analysis based on these traditionally calculated homeownership rates has resulted in mistaken conclusions that are often propagated as conventional wisdom. We developed our annual Homeownership Progress Index (HPRI) to provide a more in-depth look into the changes in homeownership rates over time by accounting for the impact of critical lifestyle, societal and economic trends that influence the likelihood of renting or owning a home. Understanding these homeownership characteristics and tracking how they change over time allows us to measure potential homeownership demand.

    Homeownership Rate Continues to Underperform Potential

    The figure below shows the actual homeownership rate versus potential homeownership demand represented by the HPRI. In years past, potential homeownership demand was greater than the actual homeownership rate. This was largely due to baby boomers making the lifestyle and economic decisions that drive homeownership demand, notably settling down to form households of their own. From 1984 to 1986 and again in 1992, the actual homeownership rate was at or above the potential demand. This was most likely a result of innovations in mortgage finance, and the economic boom of the 1990s. In the late 1990s to the early 2000s, the potential demand again peaked above the actual homeownership rate. Achieving the dream of homeownership may have been restricted then by access to credit or the down payment necessary to purchase a first home.

    The housing crisis brought an interesting change, as the homeownership rate exceeded the potential demand from 2008 to 2012. Speculation, easy access to credit and exuberance during the housing boom of 2004-2007 spurred the homeownership rate to record highs. As the housing market turned in 2008 and economic fundamentals supporting potential homeownership demand decreased in subsequent years, the homeownership rate exceeded potential homeownership demand, with the gap reaching almost 9 percent at its peak in 2010.

    This contrasts sharply with the dynamic observed in 2017, the most recent year of available data to estimate the HPRI. In 2017, potential homeownership demand grew by one percent over the prior year, while the actual homeownership rate underperformed potential demand by almost 9 percent. So, what could be the cause of this?

    Millennial Demand Yet to Peak

    One likely answer rests with the largest generational cohort – millennials. Millennials are often referred to as a “renter generation,” because they have prioritized furthering their education and thus delayed getting married and having children, which are critical lifestyle triggers to buying a first home. However, the dream of homeownership is far from dead for this age group. Nearly 80 percent of millennials who responded to a recent study by Harvard University’s Joint Center for Housing Studies agreed that homeownership was part of achieving the American Dream. Is it possible that they are not rejecting homeownership, but rather, simply delaying it?

    Screen Shot 2018 07 10 at 2.22.46 PM

    Are Millennials Rejecting, or Just Delaying, Marriage?

    Homeownership is strongly correlated with marriage, and millennials are getting married later than earlier generations. The median age for a first marriage in 2016 was 27.4 for women and 29.5 for men – roughly seven years more than the median ages in 1960. According to analysis in our HPRI, the homeownership rate is 30 percent higher among married couples than other households.

    We find that the decision to have children also influences the decision to own. Compared to households with no children, the homeownership rate is 5.4 percent higher for households with one or two children, and an additional percent point higher for households with three or more children. Millennial lifestyle choices to delay marriage and children are part of the reason the homeownership rate is lower than we expect.

    Millennials Keep Getting Smarter

    While important lifestyle decisions, such as marriage or owning a home, appear to take place later in life for millennials, they are getting educated in unprecedented numbers. As educational attainment levels increase, we can expect homeownership rates to eventually grow, as well. In fact, the importance of education to homeownership has only increased over time. Our HPRIshows that the impact of education in relation to homeownership has nearly doubled in 10 years. In 1997, the difference in the homeownership rate between those without a high school degree and those with a college degree was 11 percent. By 2016, this gap had widened to 21.3 percent, though it did experience a modest decline in 2017 to 20.5 percent. This goes to show that for many millennials, the key to homeownership will be getting a college education.

    Millennials’ lifestyle and economic decisions are some of the main reasons we currently have a lower homeownership rate than expected, based on our HPRI. Yet, it is reasonable to expect homeownership rates to grow as millennials continue to make important decisions, including attaining an education and, later in life, getting married and buying a home. However, the question remains: as millions of millennials look to purchase their first homes, will the housing market provide enough homes for them?

    For Mark’s full analysis on potential homeownership demand, the top five states and markets with the greatest increases and decreases in the HPRI, and more, please visit the Homeownership Progress Index.

     The HPRI is updated annually with new data. Look for the next edition of the HPRI in June 2019.

    What makes it a Homeownership Progress Index?

    Traditional measures of homeownership rates do not account for shifts in underlying demographic or economic factors. Instead, they report just the share of households that are homeowners. Analysis based on these traditionally calculated homeownership rates has resulted in mistaken conclusions that are often propagated as conventional wisdom. The HPRI provides a deeper look into the changes to homeownership rates over time by accounting for, and isolating, the impact of critical lifestyle, societal and economic trends that influence the likelihood of renting or owning a home.

    Why does the HPRI tell a different story than other measures?

    Changing demographic and economic factors either increase or decrease someone’s potential to be a homeowner. For example, increasing marital rates, household size, educational attainment, income and improving economic conditions all increase potential demand for homeownership. The HPRI measures the potential for homeownership demand based on these underlying factors. For example, the potential for, or likelihood of, homeownership may increase because of rising educational attainment or income growth. It’s important to point out that the likelihood of homeownership doesn’t have to match the actual homeownership rate. For example, it’s possible that someone may be highly likely to desire homeownership, but are unable to find any houses they can afford to buy. In that case, potential homeownership demand would be higher than the actual homeownership rate.

    What do the HPRI number values mean?

    The HPRI value is the percentage of households that are likely to be homeowners, based on underlying lifestyle, societal, and economic conditions, instead of renters. Changes over time in the HPRI are caused by changes in the underlying lifestyle, societal and economic trends.

    About the First American Homeownership Progress Index

    The First American Homeownership Progress Index is an economic model that uses annual IPUMS CPS individual anonymized census survey data to measure the influence of household circumstances and demographic, societal and economic characteristics on one’s choice to own a home. Demographic characteristics include age, race/ethnicity, gender, marital status and number of children. Additionally, the model includes educational attainment, income, the 30-year fixed rate mortgage rate and the unemployment rate to help explain changes in homeownership rates. The individual factors influencing homeownership can be isolated, while all other factors are held equal, to provide a unique perspective on the impact the isolated factor has on the likelihood of homeownership.

    The HPRI can provide the likelihood of homeownership for a given demographic and economic profile. For example, an educated man with two children and a higher income will have a higher likelihood of homeownership than a single man without a higher education degree.

    SEE ALSO: We're about to find out if Australia's crackdown on mortgage lending will get even tougher

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    • Manhattan office property sales fell by more than a quarter this spring.
    • This is partly due to a lack of mega-deals from big companies and Chinese conglomerates.
    • Meanwhile, plenty of new supply is coming on the market.

    In the second quarter, sales of large office properties in Manhattan fell 26% from the same period a year ago. It was the worst Q2 dollar volume in years:

    Screen Shot 2018 07 11 at 2.46.40 PM

    Last year’s Q2 sales – as weak as they’d been – were propped up by the last-hurrah-deal undertaken by a Chinese conglomerate. The $2.2-billion sale of 245 Park Avenue to HNA Group was the sixth largest transaction in Manhattan ever. HNA paid $1,282 per square foot for the tower, which was called “among the highest price-per-pound for this type of asset.” It was the last big Chinese property purchase in Manhattan.

    This year, Q1 was propped up by the $2.4-billion sale of Chelsea Market to Google. The deal accounted for over half the total transaction volume in the quarter. The price was a blistering $2,181 per square foot.

    “What brought the sales volume down in Q2 was the absence of the high-profile, billion-dollar office deals we’ve become accustomed to in this thriving market,” CommercialCafé, a division of Yardi, said in its report. All Q2 had to show for as its largest office deal was the sale of 5 Bryant Park for $640 million.

    With 10 small-ish office deals, no mega-deals from Google and Chinese conglomerates, the quarter was a “disappointment,” according to CommercialCafé:

    Screen Shot 2018 07 11 at 2.47.28 PM

    The price Google had forked over for its trophy building in Q1 ($2,181 per square foot) pushed the average price to a record $1,266 per square foot. But in Q2, the average price fell 16% from a year ago to $867 per square foot, near the lower portion of the range of the past few years:

    Screen Shot 2018 07 11 at 2.48.02 PM

    So volume has collapsed. But prices aren’t exactly crashing. There are no forced sales. Everything is slow and orderly. Hope prevails. And the rationalizing has begun.

    “Over the past two years, office sales activity in Manhattan has slowed to a more sustainable level, finally coming down from the highs of 2014 and 2015,” CommercialCafé said.

    Meanwhile, everyone is patiently waiting for the next Google to come along, now that the Chinese conglomerates with their murky structure and unlimited funds and their thirst for overpriced trophy projects have been sidelined by unfortunate events – including China’s crackdown on capital flight, a state take-over of some of the conglomerates including long prison sentences for some of the executives, and a blanket prohibition last summer on squandering capital on acquiring commercial real estate, such as office buildings and hotels, in foreign countries.

    CommercialCafé used Yardi Matrix data to analyze all Manhattan office transactions recorded through July 2, 2018, of $5 million or more, and larger than 50,000 square feet. In the case of mixed-use properties, only those with over 50% office space were taken into account.

    The largest deal in Q2 was the sale of 5 Bryant Park to Savanna for $640 million, by Blackstone and Brookfield Properties, which had acquired the 34-story tower in 2006 as part of a larger deal involving numerous properties across the US.

    There was a foreign buyer – but not the kind Manhattan’s office sector has been praying for. It involved the fourth largest deal in Q2. Germany’s second largest bank, Commerzbank, in which the German government still holds a 15% stake as a result of its bailout, paid $333 million for the 400,000-square-foot tower at 222 E. 41st St. The building is leased entirely to NYU Langone Medical Center. The seller was Columbia Property Trust.

    And plenty of new supply is coming on the market. In Q1, three properties totaling 1 million square feet were delivered. In Q2, 3 World Trade Center, an 80-story tower with 2.8 million square feet was delivered. While some high-profile companies have leased some space, including McKinsey Group, according to Yardi Matrix data, 1.5 million square feet of office space remain available.

    For the remainder of the year, 4.7 million square feet of office space are scheduled to be delivered, including 55 Hudson Yards, a 1.4 million-square-foot 51-story tower.

    Now if we could just get our Chinese conglomerates back! They were so much fun!

    SEE ALSO: An unauthorized copy of an investing bible that Wall Streeters pay thousands of dollars for was up for grabs on Kindle for $9.99

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    St. Louis home $1 M

    • Million-dollar listings have become commonplace in the US real estate market.
    • But when you compare the cost-per-square-foot for million-dollar listings across the country, you'll find very different results.
    • In Tampa, Florida, $1 million will fetch more than 5,000 square feet, while the same priced home in New York City buys less than 900 square feet.


    Million-dollar listings once heralded true luxury for Americans who could afford it, but now more than 4% of all homes across the 100 largest US metros are worth at least $1 million.

    Still, how much space seven figures will buy in different parts of the country ranges drastically. A million dollars could fetch buyers as little as 846 square feet in New York City and as much as 5,392 in Tampa, Florida. 

    That's according to our friends at Trulia, who rounded listings in the $1 million range for the 25 largest metros in the US by population to find out how home sizes compare. 

    Below, check out what a million-dollar listing looks like around the US, ordered from lowest to highest cost per square foot.

    SEE ALSO: What a $500,000 home looks like in 25 major cities across America

    DON'T MISS: Many millennials are itching to become homeowners — here are the 17 best cities to put down roots

    Tampa, Florida

    Listing price: $999,000

    Square feet: 5,392

    Price per square foot: $185

    Newark, New Jersey

    Listing price: $979,000

    Square feet: 4,885

    Price per square foot: $200

    Baltimore, Maryland

    Listing price: $989,900

    Square feet: 4,570

    Price per square foot: $217

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    San Francisco

    • Million-dollar homes are most likely to be found on the East or West coasts of America.
    • LendingTree collected real estate data from more than 155 million properties across the United States to calculate which cities have the highest concentration of homes worth $1 million and up.
    • Four cities in California have more than 10% of homes valued over $1 million.

    America's coasts are bursting with million-dollar homes.

    To pinpoint exactly where million-dollar homes are located — and how close they are to each other — LendingTree collected real estate data for more than 155 million properties in the United States. The home values are based on public taxes, deeds, mortgages, foreclosure data, and proprietary local data.

    LendingTree then calculated the concentration of million-dollar homes in each city by dividing the number of homes valued at $1 million or higher by the total number of homes in the statistical area, according to the report.

    The data shows that expensive properties are more likely to be on the coasts than inland America with the exception of Denver, Colorado. California is home to the top three spots with the most million-dollar homes, thanks in part to the high concentration of startups and tech giants in the area. Four cities in California have more than 10% of homes valued over $1 million, and San Jose is the only place where the median home value (among all homes) is above $1 million.

    Below, check out which US cities have the highest share of million-dollar homes in America.

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    22. Charlotte, North Carolina

    Percent of million-dollar homes: 1.02%

    Median value of homes: $187,000

    Median value of million-dollar homes: $1,295,000

    21. Baltimore, Maryland

    Percent of million-dollar homes: 1.07%

    Median value of homes: $270,000

    Median value of million-dollar homes: $1,214,000

    20. Riverside, California

    Percent of million-dollar homes: 1.12%

    Median value of homes: $332,000

    Median value of million-dollar homes: $1,339,000

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