Existing home sales spike in March

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Existing-home sales jumped in March to their highest annual rate in 18 months, while unsold inventory showed needed improvement, according to the National Association of Realtors. Led by the Midwest, all major regions experienced strong sales gains in March and are above their year-over-year sales pace. Total existing-home sales, which are completed transactions […]

Vacation home sales soar in 2014; investment purchases fall

WASHINGTON, D. C. — Vacation home sales boomed in 2014 to above their most recent peak level in 2006, while investment purchases fell for the fourth straight year, according to an annual survey of residential homebuyers recently released by the National Association of Realtors. NAR’s 2015 Investment and Vacation Home Buyers Survey, covering existing- and new-home transactions […]

Renters feeling the squeeze in many areas

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The gap between rental costs and household income is widening to unsustainable levels in many parts of the country, and the situation could worsen unless new home construction meaningfully rises, according to new research by the National Association of Realtors. NAR reviewed data on income growth, housing costs and changes in the share of […]

Number of ‘underwater’ properties is down

I have some good news and some bad news. The good news is that the number of properties nationwide with negative equity is down by about 3 percent. The bad news is that 5.1 million American homes remain in negative equity. Negative equity, often referred to as “underwater” or “upside down,” means that borrowers owe […]

FHA to reduce annual insurance premiums

Reduction to increase credit affordability WASHINGTON, D.C. — As the nation’s housing market continues to improve, U.S. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro recently announced the Federal Housing Administration will reduce the annual premiums new borrowers will pay by half of a percent. This action is projected to save more than two million FHA homeowners […]

Remodeling conditions continue to show strong growth

Des Plaines, Il. — The National Association of the Remodeling Industry’s third-quarter Remodeling Business Pulse data of current and future remodeling business conditions indicated strong growth in the third quarter of 2014 with a rating of 6.41. Quarter-over-quarter increases are evident in all sub-components measuring remodeling activity. This is the second quarter of growth in 2014, […]

Selling your home: Price it right!

By CJ Lauria Inevitably, whenever the subject of selling your home comes up, the question arises: “How much?” Is your home worth more or less than what you paid for it? Like most families, your home may be your largest single asset. How can you maximize your return on that investment? Ask any potential seller. […]

Building permits, housing on the rise

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the U.S. Census Bureau recently announced the following new residential construction statistics for July 2014: Building permits Privately owned housing units authorized by building permits in July were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,052,000. This is 8.1 percent (±1.8 percent) above the revised […]

HUD scorecard: Housing rebound progresses

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s latest data show progress among key indicators, including rebound in the sale of existing homes and the continuing downward trend of foreclosure starts and completions. While this scorecard notes positive overall trends in the housing market, officials caution that more work needs to be done as the […]

10 things sellers should know

As the economy continues to strengthen, you may wonder whether to stay in your current home or sell while the timing seems perfect. Since there are many things to sort out, the experts at Homes.com have put together a comprehensive overview of things to consider: • Size: If your home is too small, moving may […]

Alamont a smart vacation retreat

Rustic logs, sparkling windows and crisp lines combine in the Altamont to create a striking vacation retreat. What’s more, it’s surprisingly economical to maintain. Logs are renowned for their excellent insulating qualities, as well as their durability. The metal roof, too, is noted for its long life and ease of care. At center is a […]

Informal Northrop feels fresh, spacious

Clean lines join with a hipped roof to give a fresh look to the Northrop. Raised stucco forms corner quoins and accents the sturdy square columns of this informal single-level home. Inside the vaulted entry, you immediately feel a sense of spaciousness. This plan could easily be adapted for wheelchair accessibility. A vaulted great room […]

Multi-million dollar home sale breaks Olympic Valley record

OLYMPIC VALLEY — The Olympic Valley residence at 254 Granite Chief Road recently sold for $8.5 million, making it the highest priced home sale in Olympic Valley to date. The sale price of 254 Granite Chief is nearly $3 million higher than the previous record home sale price for Olympic Valley, also known as Squaw Valley. […]