Category Archives: Real Estate

Tampa Apartments See Massive Rent Increase
If you live in the Tampa Bay metro area, you have experienced the vast increase in rents first-hand. Recently in The Tampa Tribune this story was featured in more detail.  Click the following link to read the full article: http://tbo.com/news/business/study-tampa-apartment-rent-increases-among-largest-in-us-20150414/?page=1 Have you experienced this trend yourself?...
Tips for Spotting a Desperate Seller
With fewer homes on the market, it is still a seller’s paradise. They can choose from a variety of offers until they find the best one. This might lead one to believe that the seller still has the advantage. However, there does seem to be a few sellers out there who are desperate to sell their property as fast as they can. When buyers come across this type of seller, the advantage suddenly shifts in their favor. Of course knowing how to find or spot this type of seller isn’t always easy.  Look for terms like, “priced to sell,” “quick close,” or “seller relocating,” to provide you with some clues as to the buyer’s state of mind. If you are looking to find a good deal or a desperate seller, start by searching for properties that have been on the market for a long time. The longer...
A Guide to the Top Real Estate Terms
You might be ready to buy or sell your home, but how much do you know about real estate lingo? Before you venture into the world of home buying and selling, it might be a good time to familiarize yourself with the top phrases. Top Terms for Buyers Adjustable rate mortgage – a mortgage loan with an interest rate that adjusts over the life of the loan. The adjustment rate is usually determined by a market indicator, such as the weekly average of U.S. Treasury Bills, but is limited by how much and often it can be adjusted. Appraisal – the determined value of a property based on initial purchase price compared with the sales prices of similar properties in the area. Your bank or mortgage company may require an appraisal before they will lend you the money for the home. Closing costs – all monies that need to...
What Do the Next Five Years Hold for Home Pricing?
The days of home prices reaching levels seen during the real estate bubble seems to be over. Though pricing in 2013 was down 20% compared to its 2006 summer highs, the S&P Index Committee did report that prices were up 23% from their March 2012 lows in both the 10 and 20 city indexes. While 2013 proved to be a banner year for the housing market, with an appreciation rate of 6.4 percent, experts do predict that prices will cool somewhat due to rising mortgage rates, less inventory and a lack of good bargains. In fact, most economist, real estate experts and real estate investment strategist predict a moderate annual rise in prices of 3.7% over the next five years. This translates to a cumulative change in home value of 19.7% by the end of 2018. This housing market pricing picture is based on a recent study...
Retail Rent Sees Global Growth
There is finally some good news in the land of retail rent. According to research conducted by CBRE, a real estate services and investment firm, global retail rent grew by 4% in 2013, and is expected to continue to rise in 2014, especially in popular markets. The growth seems to be a result of the lack of prime retail space available in some of the most expensive markets in the world, such as Hong Kong, Paris and New York. In 2013, a square foot of space cost US$4,333 per year in Hong Kong, US$3,150 in New York and US$1,426 in Paris. Additionally, there also appears to be a shortage of new retail development, which makes the fight for limited existing space even more competitive and costly. This is especially true in Hong Kong, where space in limited and demand is extremely high, especially among luxury retailers who...
Where Have All the Homeowners Gone?
We’ve heard it before: “The 2008 real estate crash resulted in more than 7 million foreclosed homes.” But what does this number represent in real terms?  It means 7 million home owners whose creditworthiness has plummeted, leaving them unable to again enjoy homeownership. Where have they all gone? It would seem, to renting. More than 100 million Americans are renters. Never before in history has the business of renting single-family homes been more centralized, thanks to behemoth investors like Blackstone setting the pace. From individual investors purchasing just a few properties to multibillion dollar hedge funds buying thousands, the rental market has become big business. Multiunit landlords are enjoying access to bank financing at the same time that many homeowners – especially blacks, Hispanics and the under-40 crowd - are being denied. Is this a welcome trend? Thomas Lawler, an economist and formerly with Fannie Mae, stated, “Early buying...
Real Estate Bidding Wars Spark Housing Bubbles in Hot Markets
You may have seen the headlines…“Bidding Wars Return to Boston Condo Market”…“National Association of Realtors (NAR) Announces Home Sales Lowest Since 1999”…“Why Real Estate Listings Are So Hot Right Now”… and others. Do these headlines contain typos? No. Home prices are rising in many areas across the United States and investors from Wall Street and other countries are leading the charge.  They took advantage of distressed real estate during the short-sale glory days, purchasing properties at bargain-basement prices and, rather than flipping those homes as might happen in a healthy housing market, renting homes to former homeowners displaced by short sales and foreclosures. Now, with fewer homes for sale and increasing buyer demand, the bidding wars have begun in earnest, producing bubbles in the hottest housing markets like Charlotte, Los Angeles, and San Diego. Are we headed for another housing crash? No, says Zillow’s director of economic research,...
Crowdfunding Comes to Real Estate Investing
Today, individual real estate investors have more opportunity than ever to invest in income-producing property, thanks to a new rule  - The Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act of 2012 (The JOBS Act) – which ends an 80-year ban on “general solicitation”, allowing private firms and investment funds to broadly advertise securities offerings. Expect to see real estate sponsors giving it their all via the Internet, television, newspapers, and billboards…and, more importantly, keep your eyes and ears open to avoid getting swindled. What Spurred The JOBS Act? The JOBS Act came about as Congress pushed to promote crowdfunding as a means of raising capital. Crowdfunding is defined as the practice of funding a project or venture by raising many small amounts of money from a large number of people, typically via the Internet. Currently, The JOBS Act allows only for private placement issuers to sell to accredited investors. Accredited...
The Renter Nation: What’s Behind It?
“After going through what was the housing market's darkest hour, housing is now one of the most popular investments in America.” (StreetAuthority) During the recession, many homeowners found themselves facing some very tough decisions. Renting a home became a viable, albeit temporary, housing option. Or so Americans believed. However, some former homeowners have permanently embraced renting, along with those individuals who cannot yet purchase a home, or those who remain indecisive about home ownership. Along with these changing views of the rental lifestyle, real estate investors are loosening the strings on short sale and foreclosed homes in their portfolios, allowing more rental homes to flow into the market. Together, these forces have created a renter’s nation. Jeffrey Friedman, CEO of apartment REIT Associated Estates Realty, predicts that “of the 5.5 million new households (newlyweds, boomers, college grads) that will be formed between now and 2016, an estimated 3.8...
Property Valuations, Loan to Value
In private lending where loan to own underwriting is very prevalent this category has the greatest pressure on it for manipulation to get the loan closed.  Proper valuation of a property to base the Deed of Trust on is a basic aspect of underwriting, however this seemingly easy item can be very murky for investors, especially if Real Estate is not your fulltime occupation with a few hundred transactions in experience.  Any estimate, valuation or appraisal of Real Property is only an estimate.  One does not need to hold any particular license to hold a different opinion of a property at any given time. Value is difficult in slow moving markets as there is limited (market) data to review in closings to estimate value and in rapidly changing markets some will lean toward on the side of where the market came from (past) and some will...