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Author Archives | Laxman

Laxman - who has written 28515 posts on Opalesque Real Estate Briefing.


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Australia: Confused by reports on what the property market is doing? You’re not alone

Posted on 10 May 2013

Did city prices stagnate in the March quarter? Or did they show moderate growth? Or perhaps they rose strongly? All three interpretations are possible, depending on which information source you choose to highlight.

Canada: Housing starts fall 3.5pct in April as market faces ‘new reality’

Posted on 09 May 2013

Housing starts cooled in April, suggesting that home builders are scaling back construction in the wake of the decline in home sales. And, notably, the consensus estimate among economists for this important spring month was virtually bang on.

Moody’s: US commercial property market outlook broadly stable in 1Q 2013

Posted on 09 May 2013

The outlook for the major US property markets was broadly stable in the first quarter, consistent with the generally slow pace of both construction and absorption, the supply and demand components of real estate, according to Moody’s Investors Service’s Red-Yellow-Green quarterly property assessment.

Winners of the investor-led housing recovery

Posted on 09 May 2013

The housing market recovery is gaining momentum, but it’s not your average homebuyer behind the push, it’s investors. Low interest rates and recuperating home prices have investors flocking to the market to find bargains and they’re pricing out traditional buyers.

Is the U.S. housing market shortage just a mirage?

Posted on 09 May 2013

Thanks to the near-record-low interest rates, many Americans are ready to jump back into the housing market. Unfortunately, many are running into one obstacle—there aren’t enough homes for sale. That’s a good sign, though! After all, a leading indicator of economic growth is a healthy housing market, and a lack of housing should mean that [...]

US housing market passes half way mark in return of ‘normal’

Posted on 09 May 2013

Most of us already realize “normal” is relative. Yet, we are only human. And as such, we can scarcely stop ourselves from the very-human behavior of seizing every available opportunity to try to quantify and define the term.

Fund targets Latin American housing

Posted on 09 May 2013

The U.S. government’s Overseas Private Investment Corporation is investing $100 million in Paladin Realty Latin America Investors IV, a fund targeting housing development in Latin America. Paladin aims to build 12,000 affordable housing units for Latin America’s growing workforce, particularly first-time home.

JLL: European logistics markets remain stable despite subdued Eurozone outlook

Posted on 09 May 2013

The Q1 2013 European logistics real estate take-up market continued to demonstrate steady performance, according to the latest analysis from Jones Lang LaSalle. Germany was once again the most active European market, whilst Spain was the only other market to demonstrate growth. Completions have fallen, but six million sq m of space under construction is [...]

UK: House prices rise in April, says Halifax

Posted on 09 May 2013

Prices rose 1.1% over the month and 2% over the year, but significant constraints remain on housing demand, according to the bank. House prices continued on their upward trajectory in April, partly driven by a big drop in the level of new borrower’s mortgage payments in relation to their income over the past six years, [...]

London hotel real estate more attractive than New York

Posted on 09 May 2013

London is outpacing New York in the real estate market - especially with wealthy buyers from overseas, analysts say. InterContinental Hotels Group PLC is still waiting to sell the InterContinental New York Barclay hotel, one of its limited number of trophy properties, but it had no problem marketing another of its key assets in [...]

Apartment market in Germany builds

Posted on 09 May 2013

The firm that owns more rental apartments than any other closely held company in Germany is getting nearer to an initial public offering, hoping to cash in on rising rents and demand for a stock with the potential to offer attractive yields in a low-interest-rate environment.

S.Arabia: Rent set to increase every 5 years

Posted on 09 May 2013

Rents will increase every five years due to the negative impact of recent decisions that obligate owners of vacant lands to either build or sell the land altogether. Owners not able to build on their vacant lands may be forced to sell, according to experts in real estate.

Beijing clampdown on property market ‘won’t hold back China homes sales’

Posted on 09 May 2013

Mainland home sales to grow at slower pace and prices to rise 5 to 10 per cent, says Moody’s. The mainland property market will continue to grow, but at a slower pace, while developers which focus on the mass market will experience strongest growth, Moody’s Investors Service said.

Stronger housing market raises financial risk for NZ - RBNZ

Posted on 09 May 2013

A surging New Zealand housing market is raising the risks to the country’s financial system, prompting a move to tighten lending rules for major banks, while an overvalued currency is hindering the rebalancing of the economy, the central bank said on Wednesday.

Over 50pct of Americans expect home prices to rise

Posted on 08 May 2013

More than half of Americans now expect the country’s home prices to climb within the next year, illustrating a growing optimism toward the health of the housing industry, according to new data from mortgage-finance company Fannie Mae.

American housing market is slowly recovering momentum

Posted on 08 May 2013

Properties in America are hot for Chinese investors, but what can we expect as the “new normal” for housing in the United States? The American housing recovery is absolutely underway. The operative part of this phrase is “way” since America has a “way-to-go” before the recovery actually takes hold.

Another U.S. housing market crisis on the horizon?

Posted on 08 May 2013

Home prices are heating up, as the flow of new homes and permits continue to steadily increase and the attraction of historically low mortgage rates motivates buyers. The buyers that are driving up the housing market are not only the buyers of principal homes, but also the investors who are attracted to the relatively lower [...]

Public housing agencies push to impose time limits, work requirements for aid recipients

Posted on 08 May 2013

Deep in the president’s new budget is a plan that could transform public housing in the nation by allowing housing authorities to increasingly set time limits or work requirements for participants.

Record prices for US commercial property

Posted on 08 May 2013

U.S. commercial property prices hit record levels last month, a new report suggests. Green Streets Advisors’ commercial property index moved one percent higher than the record achieved in August, 2007, fueled by low interest rates and “modest economic growth.” The index rose one percent in April, after a two percent increase the month before, Bloomberg [...]

Canadian housing - bursting bubble or gentle landing?

Posted on 08 May 2013

It’s looking like an unsettling spring in Canadian housing, a market that has proven far more even-keeled and less scary for investors in recent years than in the United States.

UK: Does the government actually want any new homes built?

Posted on 08 May 2013

With a limp-wristed tearing of the reams of planning law and a hit-and-hope punt at helping the consumer mortgage market - does the government actually want any new homes to be built?

London property prices continue to outperform

Posted on 08 May 2013

According to HM Land Registry All Transaction Data, prices in the area rose 25% across the year to reach an average of £1,186,817. LCP said this price increase is equivalent to earning £122 an hour for a working week, 14 times the London Living Wage (£8.55).

Germans splurge on Italian homes locals can’t afford

Posted on 08 May 2013

Yasemin Rosenmaier has been selling homes in northern Italy since 2005 and she’s finding that there’s never been a better time to work for a German broker.

Baku real estate market prices grew by 1.2pct in April

Posted on 08 May 2013

In April the Baku real estate market observed a price rise by 1.2%. At that, the prices grew by 3.54% since early 2013 and by 7.8% versus the 2012 same term. MBA Group consulting company’s general director Nusret Ibrahimov says that in April prices on the primary housing market of Baku grew by 9.6% from [...]

S.Africa: Commercial property values reach new highs

Posted on 08 May 2013

Property values have fully recovered the ground that was lost during the last downturn and values are now one percentage point above their ‘07 highs. Commercial real estate values continue to benefit from a backdrop of low interest rates coupled with modest economic growth and it’s likely the upward momentum in values witnessed so far [...]

Qatari real estate transactions down

Posted on 08 May 2013

The value of total real estate transactions during last week of April (April 21 to 25) amounted to QR807.2m, down 5.5 percent compared to QR854.4m the previous week, according to Ezdan Holding Group’s weekly report.

India: Distressed office space assets to go up

Posted on 08 May 2013

Supply of office properties from developers struggling to fund, complete or sell their projects is likely to increase further in the April-June quarter, according to the latest RICS India Commercial Property Survey.

India real estate: Can FDI save the day?

Posted on 08 May 2013

Investment in India’s real estate sector is falling fast – yet another bit of bad news for the economy. In the fiscal year just ended, new investment into real estate was down 55 per cent from Rs926bn to Rs420bn (from $18bn to $8bn) according to the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (Assocham).

China property developers seek US growth

Posted on 08 May 2013

The two-acre site at 421 Kent Avenue in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, is nothing more than concrete rubble and rusted steel rods – remnants of a previous property project gone wrong.

Stamp duty chokes sales of Hong Kong commercial property

Posted on 08 May 2013

Commercial property deals in the city fell sharply over the past three months as short-term investors shied away after the doubling of stamp duty on the purchase of both residential and non-residential properties.

Predicting when Hong Kong property bubble will burst

Posted on 08 May 2013

Hong Kong has the highest home prices among major global cities, including London, New York, and Tokyo, according to a report by global property consultancy Savills, and one of the big questions in global finance these days is predicting when the Hong Kong property bubble will burst.

Singapore luxury property – A dormant market worth exploring

Posted on 08 May 2013

With personal income tax capped at a modest 20% and no capital-gains tax, it’s unsurprising that Singapore has become a magnet for wealth around the region. In a recent survey of 1,000 mobile millionaires, Singapore was deemed the most desirable place to call home in Asia – billionaires Richard Chandler and Eduardo Saverin are [...]

Philippine real estate draws foreign buyers

Posted on 08 May 2013

The Philippines real estate market is not only attracting investments from Filipino expatriates but also from foreigners who are either buying retirement homes or expanding assets in the country.

NZ: Housing outlook hits record high

Posted on 08 May 2013

Expectations of house price inflation have hit a record high in ASB’s quarterly survey, while the numbers who consider it a good time to buy a house continue to fall. In the bank’s latest survey, 63 per cent of respondents expected house prices to rise over the year ahead, up from 59 per cent three [...]

NZ: Raging housing market a headache

Posted on 08 May 2013

Increasing pressure in a housing market where supply is failing to meet demand is posing a growing risk to New Zealand’s financial stability, the Reserve Bank warns. In the bank’s six-monthly financial stability report, released on Wednesday, governor Graeme Wheeler says the country’s financial health is still sound, but growing private sector credit and rising [...]

U.S. commercial-property prices rise above their ’07 peak

Posted on 07 May 2013

Prices for U.S. commercial property last month rose above a peak reached in 2007 as low interest rates and financing availability helped increase values, according to research firm Green Street Advisors Inc.

Returning to the housing market after a short sale, foreclosure

Posted on 07 May 2013

For the millions of Americans who lost their homes in a foreclosure or short sale during the recession, things are starting to look up. In addition to receiving a piece of the $3.6 billion settlement that banks are distributing to borrowers who were wrongfully foreclosed on, some homeowners are now becoming “boomerang buyers” and re-entering [...]

Housing crash fades as defaults decline to 2007 levels

Posted on 07 May 2013

Six years after the start of the foreclosure crisis, American homeowners are paying their mortgages like the housing crash never happened.

US housing perks up, but too few homes for sale

Posted on 07 May 2013

Beth Heinen Bell and her husband, Christian — like a rising number of Americans — are ready to jump into the real estate market and become homeowners. Yet they’re running into an obstacle that’s keeping the national housing recovery in check: There aren’t enough homes for sale.

Secret ‘pocket listings’ return in hot housing markets

Posted on 07 May 2013

The housing rebound has given new life to an old, but little-known sales practice called “pocket listings,” where agents reserve homes for serious buyers only.

A reality check on real estate

Posted on 07 May 2013

New statistics on the real estate market show home prices have risen by about 9 percent over the past year. Does this mean that real estate is back? On April 30, the Standard & Poors/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices release showed that a composite of real estate prices in 20 major metropolitan markets had increased by [...]

A home buying frenzy in Las Vegas

Posted on 07 May 2013

My elderly mother is freaking out. Two weeks ago she put her small house on the market in the Las Vegas suburb of Henderson. The day she listed the house she received four calls, including an agent who assured he was on his way over with a buyer. Within days she had seven offers and [...]

CMHC sees momentum building in Canada’s housing market

Posted on 07 May 2013

The current slump in Canada’s housing market may be short lived. Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. – with its pulse on the market as the country’s biggest provider of taxpayer-backed mortgage default insurance – expects the housing market to stabilize by July and then begin to pick up steam.

Swiss property market slows in first quarter, says UBS

Posted on 07 May 2013

The rate of increase in Swiss house prices slowed in the first quarter, research showed on Friday, suggesting moves by the government to deflate a property bubble are starting to take effect.

Norges’ property portfolio balloons in Q1 but return slips

Posted on 07 May 2013

Norway’s giant government pension fund saw the market value of its real estate portfolio climb almost by half in the first three months of 2013 following a series of major deals. Norges Bank Investment Management (NBIM) - manager of the Norwegian Pension Fund Global - reported that the market value of the real estate portfolio [...]

Saudi houing market: Pros vs. cons

Posted on 07 May 2013

According to the statistics that have been conducted in 2013 Saudi Arabia is a country of approximately 18 million citizens with a land area of about 1.96 million square kilometers (756,981 square miles). It has the second largest oil reserves, and the world’s biggest crude exporter, and also expects to become the top producer of [...]

Dubai ranked world’s 2nd hottest property market in 2012

Posted on 07 May 2013

With the property price crash of 2008/09, induced as it was by the global economic slowdown, now a thing of past, Dubai has emerged as the second hottest property market in 2012.

Dubai’s off-plan property demons return

Posted on 07 May 2013

Damac Properties, one of the hardest-hit developers during Dubai’s real estate market meltdown five years ago, launched a 28 million-square-foot luxury villa and condo project on the outskirts of the city last month. To fund construction, the company is using a financing model that should be familiar to anyone who has experienced or read about [...]

Housing market slows in China’s first-tier cities

Posted on 07 May 2013

China’s rocketing real estate market has decelerated since the State Council announced five new policies in March intended to curb the alarmingly rapid growth. Policies designed to stabilize housing prices and stifle speculation included a 20 percent capital gains tax, higher down payments, and increased mortgage interest rates in heated up markets, as well as [...]

Japan is property ‘market to watch’

Posted on 07 May 2013

Direct investment in global real estate hit the highest level since 2008 in the first quarter, led by a surge in investment in Asia Pacific commercial property. More than $27 billion was directly invested in Asia Pacific commercial real estate in the first quarter, a 26 percent increase from the same quarter of 2012, according [...]

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