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Freddie Mac failing homeowners, watchdog says

Posted on 22 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Freddie Mac and its regulator are not doing a good enough job bird-dogging complaints by homeowners about the companies handling their mortgages, a federal oversight official said Thursday.
The mortgage giant’s eight largest mortgage servicers resolved more than 25,500 “escalated” complaints from homeowners between October 2011 and November 2012, but failed to take care of 21% of them within the required 30-day window, according to a report from the inspector general overseeing the Federal Housing Finance Agency………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Should the treasury take housing risk?

Posted on 22 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

If house-buyers were to take up all the guarantees on offer from the Treasury, some £130bn of new mortgages would be created - all of them with the home owners providing only a sliver of equity, and taxpayers on the hook for a little less than three quarters of losses, in the event that the price of the relevant houses were to fall 20%.
The Treasury estimates the potential or contingent liability for taxpayers at some £12bn………………………………………..Full Article: Source

China tycoon warns property bubbles tend to get out of control

Posted on 22 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

A series of remarks recently published by Wang Shi, chairman of China’s largest real estate developer Vanke, signal China’s property market is facing a turning point, 21st Century Business Herald reported. “There are obvious bubbles in the property market, and it is possible it will get out of control and crack,” Wang warned on his personal micro blog on March 11.
According to data released by the National Bureau of Statistics on March 18, new house prices in 70 cities in February increased by 90 per cent from January, and the rate of increases in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou were on the top of the list, hitting record highs………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hong Kong homes face 20pct price drop as banks raise rates

Posted on 22 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Hong Kong officials, who have struggled in vain for three years to slow the growth in home prices, are about to get their wish as the city’s biggest banks raise mortgage rates. Prices could fall as much as 20 percent over the next two years, according to Deutsche Bank AG, after lenders including HSBC Holdings Plc, Hong Kong’s biggest by assets, and Standard Chartered Plc raise their home loan rates by 25 basis points in response to tighter risk rules.
Hong Kong dollar’s peg to the U.S. currency has kept interest rates in the city at near record lows, underpinning a more than 110 percent gain in home prices since the beginning of 2009 to the most expensive among major global cities………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Japan land prices fall at slower rate on lower borrowing costs

Posted on 22 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Japan’s land prices dropped at a slower pace for the third year as low interest rates and buying by real estate investment trusts spurred demand.
Nationwide land prices on average fell 1.8 percent as of Jan. 1, compared with a 2.6 percent decline a year earlier, the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism said in a report yesterday. The drop was the smallest since prices posted a gain in 2008, the data showed………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Budget 2013: Osborne offers homebuyers help to buy

Posted on 21 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Help to Buy scheme offers buyers with a 5% deposit an interest-free loan of up to 20% of the value of most new homes. A £3.5bn investment in government loans to financially stretched homebuyers and a £12bn scheme to increase the availability of mortgages to people who cannot afford a large deposit were unveiled by the chancellor “to support a new generation in realising the dream of home ownership”.
The two measures were the centrepiece of a package of financial support for the housing market, and aim to provide assistance to first-time buyers and those “trapped” in their existing homes and unable to take the next step up the property ladder………………………………………..Full Article: Source

New Iraqi budget deepens housing crisis

Posted on 21 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

The strenuous efforts exerted to handle the housing crisis were quickly rendered useless when the ratified 2013 general budget did away with the allocations for the housing fund, which was to grant loans for those wishing to build new homes.
The Iraqi parliament ratified the 2013 general budget on March 7 after a heated debate among involved parties regarding the share allotted to the semi-autonomous Kurdistan region. The budget did not include any housing allocations, which were held back until an increase in oil revenues is seen………………………………………..Full Article: Source

US property prices set to rise by an average of 4.6pct in 2013, poll suggests

Posted on 20 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Residential real estate prices in the United States are set to end 2013 up an average of 4.6% and rise cumulatively by 22%, on average, over the next five years, according to a new survey.
The first quarter Zillow Home Price Expectations Survey also shows that the majority support policies that would allow certain underwater home owners to refinance at today’s low rates………………………………………..Full Article: Source

The U.S. housing bubble is back

Posted on 20 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Has the U.S. housing bubble begun to reinflate? In the past several months, there has been a lot of speculation to that effect, but so far, no one other than David Stockman has really come out and committed to an affirmative answer. And even Stockman didn’t specify when such a new bubble in the U.S. housing market might actually have begun.
But what really sparked our interest in this topic today is the unexpected strength in the number of initial unemployment insurance claims being filed during the last several weeks, which along with the strength of the construction industry cited in the latest employment situation report, suggests that the U.S. housing industry is finally showing signs of robust growth, at least as measured by rising sale prices for homes………………………………………..Full Article: Source

China’s property prices too high for more people: Survey

Posted on 20 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

More Chinese residents find property prices too high and “hard to accept” even as the government rolls out extra measures to cool the housing market, a central bank survey showed.
More than two-thirds of those surveyed, or 68 percent, said prices are too high, the highest percentage since the final quarter of 2011, the People’s Bank of China said in a quarterly release today. More than a third, or 34.4 percent, said home prices will rise in the coming three months………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Wall Street institutions behind home price surges in markets like Phoenix

Posted on 19 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

It’s no secret that Wall Street has been bullish on real estate. Housing stocks have surged over the past year, many teetering on the edge of overbought, and billionaire investors like Warren Buffett have been exceedingly vocal about the investment opportunities brick and mortar properties have represented.
Private equity and hedge fund firms have been sinking billions into single family rentals, buying distressed homes off of banks’ balance sheets in discounted bulk………………………………………..Full Article: Source

China’s housing prices rise further

Posted on 19 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

New-home prices in China rose sharply in February from January, prompting speculation that Beijing will crack down further on property speculation. The price increases follow Beijing’s vow to implement a 20% capital-gains tax on sales of second homes, further home-purchase restrictions and stricter credit regulations for second-home buyers to cool the market.
The statements hit the share prices of property developers but have also prompted a flurry of home-buying activity in China in recent weeks………………………………………..Full Article: Source

China Overseas aims for HK$100bln in property sales for 2013

Posted on 19 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

China Overseas Land & Investment, one of the biggest developers on the mainland, is aiming for sales this year of at least HK$100 billion. Chairman Kong Qingping described it as a conservative forecast, as the target has taken into account unfavourable circumstances the market could face.
Kong spoke to reporters as the company announced a 21.1 per cent jump in net profit last year to HK$18.72 billion, or HK$2.29 a share, up from a restated HK$15.46 billion, or HK$1.89 a share, a year earlier. China Overseas said its core profit, excluding property revaluation, climbed 21.4 per cent to HK$15.8 billion. Turnover rose 25.8 per cent to HK$64.58 billion………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Thailand: BoT chairman raises alarm of property, capital bubble

Posted on 19 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Foreign capital inflows have put the economy at risk of financial and property sector bubbles which could burst by year’s end, Virabongsa Ramangkura, chairman of the Bank of Thailand board, has warned. Dr Virabongsa said capital inflows have forced the stock market index up from around 1,000 points in the middle of last year to nearly 1,600 at present, while the purchase of government bonds has also surged by more than 15%.
He said he doubted that the central bank’s Monetary Policy Committee would lower interest rates to cool the influx of foreign capital………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Biggest banks see U.S. home prices surging this year

Posted on 18 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke’s efforts to revive housing are making real estate bulls even more bullish. JPMorgan Chase & Co. more than doubled its forecast for U.S. home price gains in 2013 to 7% this week, and predicts a more than 14% increase through 2015. Bank of America Corp. said last week property values will jump 8% this year, up from a prior estimate of 4.7% in a report titled “Someone say house party?”
The two biggest U.S. banks are predicting an accelerating rebound as homebuyers and investors rush to acquire a dwindling supply of properties and the Federal Reserve pushes down borrowing costs by buying mortgage bonds. ……………………………………….Full Article: Source

A lot more recovery before housing bubble redux

Posted on 18 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Are we in a new housing bubble? One unscientific way to dismiss that fear is to know that people swept up in one don’t usually ask that question. While real-estate values may not warrant much more than a rise slightly faster than inflation, housing as an industry still could get much better.
Consider the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index for March due Monday. The index, which fell one point a month ago to 46, could tick closer to 50………………………………………..Full Article: Source

How to play an improvement (not a boom) in housing

Posted on 18 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

After a housing crash that saw trillions of dollars of wealth eroded, millions of Americans entered loan defaults and lost their homes, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and massive government bailouts, the housing market may have seen a bottom, recent data suggests.
Data released jointly by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Census Bureau indicates that privately-owned housing starts in January were at 890,000, 23% higher than the January 2012 rate of 720,000. Looking ahead, privately-owned housing units authorized by building permits in January were at 925,000, 35.2% above the January 2012 numbers………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Property industry pins hopes on London safe haven

Posted on 18 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

At the property industry’s annual jamboree in Cannes, Angela Monaghan finds that the mood is upbeat, with professionals believing increasing demand will persist this year as investors continue to favour London.
As 20,000 property professionals last week descended on Cannes in the French Riviera for the annual party and networking event that is Mipim, the mood among the British contingent had lifted………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Paris housing prices sputter as Hollande’s taxes threaten boom

Posted on 18 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Paris home prices, which have risen 37 percent since 2009, are set to end their upward streak as French President Francois Hollande cuts property subsidies and raises taxes.
Government support for the housing industry ranges from lodging subsidies for students to tax breaks for renovation works and public construction, which totalled 45 billion euros ($59 billion) in 2011, or 2.25 percent of gross domestic product. Hollande is withdrawing some of that help as Europe’s second-largest economy is on the brink of a third recession in four years, hurting property investors such as Bouygues SA………………………………………..Full Article: Source

China home prices rise in most cities, posing policy challenge

Posted on 18 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

China’s new home prices posted the broadest advance since December 2011, a test for new Premier Li Keqiang as he seeks to prevent a bubble without damping economic growth.
Prices climbed in 62 cities of the 70 the government tracks in February from a year earlier, the National Bureau of Statistics said today. Beijing prices jumped 5.9 percent from a year earlier, while they advanced 8.1 percent in Guangzhou………………………………………..Full Article: Source

China: Housing pains

Posted on 18 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Beijing has seen a surge of secondhand house sales recently in the wake of a new housing policy which imposes higher income tax on home sellers. The policy, released as a package by the State Council on March 1 in an effort to control housing prices, orders that all home owners be levied a 20-percent tax on capital gains. Prior to the new rules, income tax was 1 percent to 2 percent of the sale price.
According to a March 11 National Business Daily report, data on the website of the Beijing Municipal Commission of Housing and Urban-Rural Development shows that a week after the policy package was released, the number of contracts signed for second-hand housing came to 9,400, a 140.5 percent increase from the week before, and a 279.5 percent increase compared to a month ago. ……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Australia: Low interest rates strengthen overall property market, but resistance remains: RBA

Posted on 18 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

While low interest rates have boosted prices in many residential markets across Australia, they remain below earlier peaks in most markets, the Reserve Bank of Australia has noted. The general improvement in sentiment was apparent in auction clearance rates, the bank assistant governor (economy) Christopher Kent said in an address to The Australian Institute of Building last week.
“After falling sharply in 2011, these rates recovered to around average levels in both Sydney and Melbourne in late 2012 and they appear to have increased further early this year,” he said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

NZ: Reserve Bank looks to cool property market

Posted on 18 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

The Reserve Bank is looking to introduce new economic tools to cool down the housing market. Interest rates are set to stay steady until the end of the year, easing pressure on mortgage holders, but the Reserve Bank and the Government are looking to introduce new economic tools to control rising prices.
Economists say the Reserve Bank cannot raise the Official Cash Rate without hurting farmers, exporters and businesses. “The Reserve Bank is in a catch 22 situation. It needs to push up the Official Cash Rate to cool down the housing market but if it did that it would hurt the rest of the economy and push up the New Zealand dollar,” Interest.co.nz’s Bernard Hickey said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Exotic finance does not make housing affordable

Posted on 15 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Let’s consider the case of a $250,000 interest only mortgage with a fixed rate of 4 percent that begins to amortize after 10 years. Its monthly payment for 10 years will be $833, after which it jumps to $1515. Suppose a family decides that $833 per month is at the edge of affordable.
This means that in 10 years, its income must have risen by 81 percent, or about 6 percent per year for every year, for the payments to remain affordable. This might happen–it also might not…………………………………Full Article: Source

New US foreclosure filings rise in February: RealtyTrac

Posted on 15 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

More U.S. homeowners were hit with new foreclosure filings in February, pointing to the challenges the market still faces even as the housing recovery gains traction, data from RealtyTrac showed on Thursday. Foreclosure starts were seen on 71,488 homes in February, up 10 percent from the month before, though that was still down nearly 25 percent from a year ago.
Many of the states that saw the biggest increases in new filings either deal with foreclosures through the court system or have recently implemented legislation that has slowed the process down, said Daren Blomquist, vice president at RealtyTrac…………………………………Full Article: Source

UK: High house prices offer best way to pay for long term care – but what will the inheritor generation say?

Posted on 15 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

High house prices offer a solution to the long term care crisis, according to leading economist Ros Altmann, who says that more people should be encouraged to borrow against property to fund care for frailty in old age.
Equity release schemes, which used to be known as home income plans, enable homeowners aged over 55 to unlock wealth in bricks and mortar by means of a lifetime roll-up mortgage where no interest is paid on the debt until the borrower dies………………………………..Full Article: Source

Housing market recovery “is underway”

Posted on 15 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Recovery in the housing market has begun, claimed one property expert today, after banks and building societies reported that mortgage lending to home buyers had got off to its best start to the year since 2008.
A total of 38,300 loans were advanced for house purchase in January, down on the 45,900 taken out in December, but an 11 per cent increase from the 34,600 loans advanced in January last year…………………………………Full Article: Source

Poland property: Have we seen the bottom?

Posted on 15 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

It’s hard to get consumers to ramp up spending when residential property prices are slumping – the wealth effect drags down spending, as economies ranging from Spain and Ireland to the US have found in recent years.
Poland has been hit by the same phenomenon – one of the many reasons that retail spending has slumped, helping drag down the country’s economic performance. Polish residential real estate prices have been steadily falling for five years – but that trend may now be changing…………………………………Full Article: Source

Dubai luxury villa prices up 20pct in 2012

Posted on 15 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Property prices in Dubai rose the second highest globally, registering a 20 per cent increase in 2012, a new global report has confirmed. “Dubai stands out with strong growth of 20 per cent in the price of luxury villas during 2012… the emirate rebounded in 2012 on the back of a resurgence in demand,” Knight Frank, a global property company, said in the Wealth Report 2013.
“This was aided by lower prices and underpinned by its [Dubai's] location as a strategic hub, able to attract wealth from the Middle East, North Africa, the Indian Subcontinent and Central Asia…………………………………Full Article: Source

Hong kong: Property firms take hit from rate rise

Posted on 15 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Investors dump shares of developers in favour of financials after three major banks raise mortgage rates by 25 basis points. Shares of Hong Kong developers fell yesterday after three major banks raised mortgage rates by 25 basis points amid mounting risk in the property market.
In response to the first rate rise in 18 months, Sun Hung Kai Properties, the world’s largest developer by market value, fell 3.3 per cent to HK$107.90, while Cheung Kong declined 0.94 per cent to HK$115.70. Henderson Land Development and Hang Lung Properties dropped 3.3 and 2 per cent, respectively…………………………………Full Article: Source

Global property deals seen back above $1 trillion in 2013

Posted on 14 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Global property deals could exceed $1 trillion (669.88 billion pounds) this year for the first time since 2007, helped by growing confidence in North America and Asia and a greater appetite among sovereign wealth funds for real estate, a report said.
Property consultant Cushman & Wakefield said it sees global investment volumes rising 14 percent in 2013, after increasing to $929 billion in 2012. This would be the highest level since the year before the 2008 financial crisis when investors ploughed $1.25 trillion into property deals………………………………….Full Article: Source

U.S. mortgage refi program gains traction as home prices rise

Posted on 14 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

A U.S. government effort to help struggling homeowners refinance into cheaper loans gained traction last year, helped by rising home prices and changes to the program that made more borrowers eligible for relief, a report released on Wednesday showed.
Nearly 1.1. million refinances were completed under the Home Affordable Refinance Program, or HARP, in 2012, more than double the year-earlier number, the report from the Federal Housing Finance Agency said………………………………….Full Article: Source

Poland to see EUR1bln of property deals in H1: Savills

Posted on 14 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Polish real estate investment volumes will reach €1 bn in the first half of 2013, property adviser Savills has predicted. According to research published by Savills at MIPIM, an active fourth quarter in 2012 resulted in Poland’s highest annual investment volume since 2006 at €2.7 bn, representing 8% year-on-year growth.
With activity expected across all property sectors, the adviser forecasts €1 bn will be transacted in the Polish commercial property market during the first half of 2013………………………………….Full Article: Source

Improvement on the Czech commercial real estate market in sight?

Posted on 14 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Bank Austria sees anti-cyclical investment opportunities in the Czech Republic and CEE. The Czech Republic offers a low country risk and transparent real estate market. According to Reinhard Madlencnik, the head of Real Estate at Bank Austria, “Real estate investors and developers are running the risk of missing important anti-cyclical opportunities. At Bank Austria, we are ready to continue offering financing.”
Bank Austria’s real estate segment generated around EUR 1.5 billion in new business in 2012. The goal for 2013 is to maintain this volume, if not improve it. According to Madlencnik, “UniCredit’s outstanding CEE network enables us to apply our expertise in Austria and also use the local know-how of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic to provide our customers with comprehensive service.”…………………………………Full Article: Source

Property prices in Hong Kong forecast to continue growing

Posted on 14 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Property prices in Hong Kong are likely to rise for the rest of 2013 following a short term correction of ten percent, according to a recent report by property consultancy firm Colliers. Colliers also predict that potential buyers will bear greater transaction costs in order to enter the market as the expectation of returns is sustained by positive aspects of the macro-environment.
Colliers predict a shift in demand from the sales to leasing market as potential buyers react to the latest property cooling measures. Rental rates are likely to increase as a result of higher demand and boost capital values, which will achieve the opposite effect than was intended by the latest measures, according to Colliers………………………………….Full Article: Source

HSBC boosts mortgage rates as Hong Kong cools property market

Posted on 14 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

HSBC Holdings Plc increased Hong Kong mortgage rates for the first time in 18 months after the city’s banking regulator tightened risk rules on concern a property bubble may undermine financial stability.
Home loans priced at the best lending rate will rise to a range of 2.85 percent to 3.15 percent, from 2.6 percent to 2.9 percent, starting tomorrow, according to an e-mailed statement from the bank. The increase is the first since September 2011, Yvonne Chuang, a Hong Kong-based spokeswoman for the second- largest mortgage lender in the city, said…………………………………Full Article: Source

Poland’s real estate market saw pre-crisis growth last year

Posted on 13 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Poland’s real estate market continues to expand, Cushman & Wakefield said in a recent report. In 2012, the commercial investment market saw transactions worth a total of €2.8 billion, the best result since 2007. Transaction volume rose by 180 percent in annual terms.
In the office segment, there was a record lease volume and supply rose more than twice, reaching 509,000 square meters at the end of 2012. Supply in the warehousing segment grew by 25 percent in 2012 and most of the space was leased before it was completed………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Saudi real estate weighs funding for project, chief says

Posted on 13 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Saudi Real Estate Co. (SRECO) may sell Islamic bonds or take out bank loans this year to finance a 5 billion-riyal ($1.3 billion) housing development north of Riyadh, its chief executive officer said.
“We are trying to ensure we can sell Islamic bonds, borrow from banks or get financing from real estate funds if we have to,” Fahad Al Said said in a March 10 telephone interview. “Off-plan sales make a lot of sense for residential development at the moment.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

China home sales surge, tighter property rules seen

Posted on 13 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

China’s home price inflation may be steeper than official data suggest, with a near quadrupling of home sales in the capital last week after the government unveiled tax plans to curb speculation, a sign that investors have giant gains to lock in.
Pre-owned home sales in Beijing soared 280 percent year-on-year in the week of March 2-8, according to local government data, and were up 141 percent on the previous week………………………………………..Full Article: Source

The Chinese real estate market’s ‘butterfly effect’

Posted on 13 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

China’s real estate bubble is very real. It is driven by both private speculators and government development; and it is both a coastal and inland phenomenon.
Private speculators have treated real estate in China like a Pai Gow table in Macao. Buyers go to pawn shops for capital. Interest rates are usurious. Speculators own multiple properties. It all only works if prices keep going up — sound familiar?……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Property bubble in the Philippines?

Posted on 13 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Search for “Philippine property bubble” on Google and you’ll find plenty of news reports, in which real estate developers and banks assert that a property bubble is far from happening in the Philippines. The phenomenon is believed to be going on in other booming property markets, like China. But experts say that we are still safe from it.
A real estate bubble is characterized by rapid increases in valuations of real property until they reach extremely high levels, which are unsustainable, and then, decline. Bubbles can go on for years, with prices rising above reasonable and normal levels per annum, before eventually bursting and crashing. A common precursor to a looming property bubble is the excessive purchases of property for investment purposes (buy and sell), which contributes to the skyrocketing prices………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Canada: Home prices to gain ‘measly’ 2pct a year over next decade: TD

Posted on 12 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Canada’s housing market has been a source of angst for many, for industry players who have watched it cool over the past half-year, and for policy makers who are trying to engineer a soft landing and believe they have done so.
The market has cooled significantly since Finance Minister Jim Flaherty brought in his fourth round of mortgage restrictions last summer, and credit growth has slowed. So much so that last week, the Bank of Canada removed from its policy announcement a warning that it could hike interest rates to stop borrowers who have push their debt to record levels………………………………………..Full Article: Source

US: Is it time to invest in foreclosures?

Posted on 12 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Firms are buying up foreclosed homes and renting them out, hoping to profit from the appreciation. Individuals can do better, if they can buy a foreclosure that justifies itself in rent alone. Don’t look now, but some of the real estate markets that skyrocketed during the housing bubble and then crashed are heating up again.
Median housing prices in Las Vegas were up 20 percent in 2012, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR). Cape Coral, Fla., once the nation’s foreclosure capital, saw 26 percent price appreciation last year………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Real-estate scam are a big boomer complaint

Posted on 12 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Most U.S. real-estate markets are past the worst of the housing bust, but homeowners—especially boomers—are still citing real-estate scams and mortgage frauds among their biggest complaints to federal regulators.
According to the Federal Trade Commission, real estate and mortgage issues were both in the top 25 categories of complaints for 2011 and 2012. And those in their 50s had the most to complain about, accounting for 23% of all fraud complaints………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Boomerang buyers return to market after foreclosure

Posted on 12 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Borrowers who lost homes to foreclosure during the housing bust are starting to buy again. Since the housing bubble burst, 4.8 million borrowers have lost their homes to foreclosure, and another 2.2 million gave them up in short sales, according to RealtyTrac.
While many are still struggling to recover financially, a growing number are starting to bounce back — and they are looking for a new place to call home………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Cheap loans and homes drive upset US housing market

Posted on 12 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

The lack of homes for sale in the US is leading to a puzzling increasing demand from buyers and renters. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) says it is surprised since the two sectors generally compete against each other, but they are currently growing in both areas.
That’s because house prices are low, coupled with low interest rates at an historic low, which makes buying real estate competitive………………………………………..Full Article: Source

China’s non-bubble housing bubble

Posted on 12 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

China has a housing problem. But it is much different than the problem we’ve had here in the U.S., or the one in the European Union.
For starters, when U.S. housing prices were rising, the government actively took part in inflating the real estate bubble by pushing rates lower and offering zero-down loans (subprime) to middle to low-income buyers………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Top 10 places to buy a foreclosed home

Posted on 11 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

The demand for foreclosed homes is so high that investors have picked clean some of the most obvious markets – Phoenix and Las Vegas, for example. But there are still deals if you look in other metropolitan areas in the United States, according to RealtyTrac, an online marketplace for foreclosure properties based in Irvine, Calif.
By adding up each metro’s inventory of foreclosed homes, foreclosure sales as a percentage of all sales, average foreclosure discount, and the annual increase in foreclosure activity, RealtyTrac found the Top 10 best places to buy a foreclosed home: 10. Chicago – 46 percent discount on foreclosed homes……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Prime property cheaper in Dubai than Monaco, Mumbai

Posted on 11 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Even though luxury property prices in the UAE climbed by around 20 percent in 2012, it remained more affordable than some of the other top global cities. The Wealth Report 2013, prepared by Knight Frank, a global property company, shows that the price of prime luxury property in Dubai as at least 10 times lower than Monaco, the world’s most expensive residential property market.
Figures of the report suggest that, in fourth quarter of 2012, property prices in Dubai ranged between USD 520 and USD 580 per square feet. On the other hand, prime real estate cost between USD 5,350 and USD 5,920 per square feet in Monaco during the same period last year. In the list of 20 cities, Dubai was positioned on 19th rank, only ahead of Cape Town………………………………………..Full Article: Source

No US-style crash for Chinese housing market, predicts JP Morgan

Posted on 08 March 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

China’s property sector is not headed for a US-style crash given strong demand and low leverage in the sector, said Fang Fang, chief executive officer for China investment banking at JPMorgan Chase.
Fang Fang, who is also part of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference — a political advisory body, told CNBC on Thursday: “The market has reacted negatively over the past few days [to the recent cooling measures] but people still believe there is solid demand for properties, particularly in the big cities, so the impact may be temporary.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

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