Monthly Archives: January 2011

2010 Was a Tough Year for Tulsa Real Estate

2010 was the worst year for Tulsa-area home sales in over a decade, as consumers still jittery about the economy put off buying new places to live. Then again, there have been much worse years for home sales, said John Woolman, president of McGraw Realtors. “It was worse in the ’80s,” he said. “People just… Read more »

Portland, Maine Office Vacancies at New High

Drew Sigfridson is a property broker with The Boulos Company, which has just released a survey on the office market in Maine’s biggest city. He says there’s now almost 1.3 million square feet of desk and cube space sitting empty–that’s 11.2 percent of all available space. “Essentially what we saw in 2008, 2009, 2010, was… Read more »

US: Foreclosures Up in Most Major Cities

The foreclosure crisis is getting worse as high unemployment and lackluster job prospects force homeowners in an increasing number of U.S. metropolitan areas into dire financial straits. In Seattle, Houston and Chicago, cities that were relatively insulated from foreclosures early on in the housing bust, a growing number of homeowners are falling behind on mortgage… Read more »

NV: One in 10 Reno Homes Foreclosed in 2010

RealtyTrac released its 2010 Year-End Metropolitan Foreclosure Market Report on Wednesday, and one in every 16 Reno-Sparks homes went into foreclosure in 2010. The national average was one in 45 homes. Reno-Sparks ranked 11th on the list of the nation’s 206 metropolitan areas in foreclosure activity. In 2010, 11,005 properties received a foreclosure notice. That… Read more »

Zsa Zsa Gabor to Sell Beverly Hills Estate

Zsa Zsa Gabor’s mounting medical bills and the staggering monthly costs of upkeep on her sprawling estate were the driving factors behind the decision to put the property on the market, the actress’ husband said today. Prince Frederic von Anhalt gave reporters a tour of the 28-room, 12,000-square-foot mansion, and explained that he had no… Read more »

Is Real Estate A Good Hedge Against Inflation?

It often gets thrown around that owning real estate is a good “hedge” against inflation. That is, real estate prices will inherently rise under inflationary pressures. As far as conventional wisdom goes, this seems to be the case. But does this relationship actually hold true? To investigate this idea further, we looked at three separate… Read more »

US Sees Third Month of Commercial Real Estate Price Increases

U.S. commercial property prices rose 0.6 percent in November from the previous month, the third consecutive gain, as the economy showed signs of improvement, according to Moody’s Investors Service. The Moody’s/REAL Commercial Property Price Index climbed 2.8 percent from a year earlier, Moody’s said in a report today. It is up 6.4 percent from an… Read more »

Detroit Real Estate Offers Some Great Opportunities

Residential and commercial development in Detroit remains extremely challenging, but opportunities are emerging in both residential and commercial real estate, according to a panel of experts that spoke today at a University of Michigan Ross School of Business conference about revitalizing the city. “We’ve lost 30% plus in valuation over the last 10 years,” in… Read more »

Five Tips For Buying a Home

With low interest rates and foreclosure and short-sale properties on the market, many first-time home buyers have made the decision to enter the market. If home ownership is finally within your reach, be sure to keep these five tips in mind before beginning the process. 1. Do Your Homework: Use the Internet or a Realtor… Read more »

How to Understand Real Estate Contracts

Let’s say you’ve done the exciting part: You’ve gone out and found a house to buy at the right price! Once your offer is accepted, you’ll be presented with a real estate contract. This is something that your lawyer looks over, and often negotiates terms of – but you need to understand it, too. Let’s… Read more »

HUD Announces New Rules to Protect Gays, Lesbians, Transgender People From Discrimination

U.S. Housing and Urban Development officials spoke to select members of the gay media today to announce new proposed regulations to ensure equal access to housing regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. “Unfortunately, we’ve seen evidence that lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender individuals and families are being arbitrarily excluded from some housing opportunities,” said… Read more »

New York Real Estate Prices Still Dropping

Despite a big pick up in the number of commercial buildings sold last year, as well as in the total sales prices, average property values are still sinking. Citywide property values in 2010, based on price per square foot, fell 8.4% last year from 2009 levels, according to year-end figures released Wednesday by Massey Knakal… Read more »

Featured Gay Friendly Realtor: Bob Sedlor, Austin, TX

Periodically we’ll feature one of our real estate professionals here to let our readers know about some great Realtors, Mortgage Brokers, and Other Real Estate Professionals. Gay Friendly Austin, Texas Realtors and Real Estate Professionals Bob has built a reputation for customer satisfaction, and he is devoted to making your move as easy as possible…. Read more »

The Advocate’s 9th Gayest City in America: Seattle

Seattle has always had a creative, fun gay scene, making this cosmopolitan city the shining gay star of the Pacific Northwest. This is where the graceful and hip Ace Hotel chain got its start. It’s where The Stranger hosts its yearly homemade porn film festival. It’s the home of gay spokesman Dan Savage, founder of the… Read more »

Will US Cold Spell Drive Florida Real Estate Sales?

How’s this for marketing material: Last Tuesday, nearly 70 percent of the contiguous United States was covered in snow, and the National Weather Service said every state except Florida reported snow on the ground — even Hawaii. That has some optimistic Realtors and real estate agents around the state thinking that the brutal winter weather… Read more »

Forbes Lists US’s Most Affordable Cities

The Great Recession is forcing a lot of people to do more with less — including a lot less money for their daily living expenses. And while consumers haven’t been migrating to the degree they did during the Great Depression, there are probably quite a few who would seriously consider moving to a less expensive… Read more »

Are New Appraisal Rules Stifling Home Sales?

Local realtors complain that new guidelines for real estate appraisals have further depressed metro Detroit’s real estate market. Jan. 16, Detroit Free Press: Detroit-area real estate agents say up to 40% of their deals have unraveled in the past year as stringent laws regulating home appraisals have made it tougher for homeowners to get the… Read more »

National Association of Realtors: Winter Good Time for Buyers & Sellers

Is there a “best time” to sell your home? According to local real estate professionals and the National Association of Realtors, factors such as interest rates, employment, competitive pricing and even the school calendar year are factors to consider when selling a home in any season. The National Association of Realtors website states several advantages… Read more »

The Advocate’s 10th Gayest City in America: St. Louis

This is the open-minded heart of the Midwest. Anheuser-Busch just made a cash donation to the gay-and-lesbian-centric Gateway Business Guild, and St. Louis artist and gallery owner Philip Hitchcock was named as Mr. Midwest Leather 2010. But it was last October’s First Annual Trans Family Picnic, put on by local advocacy group TransHaven (TransHaven.org) in… Read more »

Four Tips for Finding a Good Realtor

Finding a real estate agent is not hard. Stick a store-bought For Sale sign on your lawn and wait for real estate agents to start calling. The hard part is finding one who is really good at what they do and who will work hard for you and with you. Barry Zigas, director of housing… Read more »

Money Saving Tips for LGBT Homeowners

Saving energy around the house makes sense, and it can also help save a significant amount of money now and in the future. Here are a handful of ideas that are especially helpful but are often overlooked by those LGBT homeowners trying to minimize their energy consumption: Sustainable landscaping A more sustainable landscape not only… Read more »

How is Buying a Home Different for Gay/Lesbian Couples?

Periodically, we’ll run guest columns from our member realtors on their areas, and issues that affect gay and lesbian buyers.  Here’s the next in the series – a great column from Kathleen McMullen about buying real estate as a gay or lesbian couple.  (click here to see Gay Realty Network’s Phoenix real estate page): As… Read more »

Featured Gay Friendly Realtor: Barbara Stone, Dallas, Texas

Periodically we’ll feature one of our real estate professionals here to let our readers know about some great Realtors, Mortgage Brokers, and Other Real Estate Professionals. Gay Friendly Dallas Realtors and Real Estate Professionals As a multi-million-dollar producer, Barbara Stone has over 25 years of cutting edge business skills and experience to help gay and… Read more »

The Advocate’s 13th Gayest City in America: Denver

With its new Gay and Lesbian Center (GLBTColorado.org), its gay state senator, Pat Steadman, and its newly appointed gay supreme court justice, Monica Marquez, Denver exemplifies that equality is inevitable – and hard fought. It’s just been 19 years since Colorado voters approved the antigay Amendment 2 (ruled unconstitutional by the U.S. Supreme Court in… Read more »

The Advocate’s 15th Gayest City in America: Miami

Miami has finally graduated from party town to something more sophisticated. Over the past 10 years, the city has zipped itself up, with Art Basel lending an air of international sophistication. The Design District has given the city its own promenade of chic stores and restaurants, and style boutiques like the Webster (TheWebsterMiami.com) and Alchemist… Read more »

Featured Gay Friendly Realtor: Jeffrey Fowler, Rehoboth Beach, DE

Periodically we’ll feature one of our real estate professionals here to let our readers know about some great Realtors, Mortgage Brokers, and Other Real Estate Professionals. Gay Friendly Rehboth Beach Realtors and Real Estate Professionals Jeffrey has over 28 years experience working in the business world for some of America’s largest companies. His knowledge and… Read more »

Houston Real Estate Market Set to Grow in 2011

The Houston real estate market was one of the strongest in the country last year. In 2011, it could enjoy the same distinction. This is the general consensus among many real estate and economic analysts. Here’s what people are saying about the Houston housing market in 2011. Clear Capital, a company that provides real estate… Read more »

Featured Gay Friendly Realtor: Marion McGuire, Glendale, Arizona

Periodically we’ll feature one of our real estate professionals here to let our readers know about some great Realtors, Mortgage Brokers, and Other Real Estate Professionals. Gay Friendly Location Realtors and Real Estate Professionals Marion goes the extra mile to help you achieve your goals, by constantly researching the market and property values so your… Read more »

US Fed Promotes Economic, Real Estate Market Recovery

Deflation fears are gradually receding. Last year’s Federal Reserve action to buy $600 billion worth of Treasury Bonds was an attempt to spur recovery and keep long-term interest rates low. It appears that board members are now mildly optimistic about 2011. According to the Federal Reserve, “The economic recovery is continuing, though at a rate… Read more »

How Will Shift in US Congress Effect Real Estate?

Now that the November elections are over, real estate professionals are looking toward 2011 as a year that will be marked with change. With a decisive shift in Congress, the fallout for the economy, business and consumers is still yet to be determined. In this month’s Power Broker Roundtable, real estate professionals Helen Hanna Casey… Read more »

Massachusetts High Court Rules Against Banks in Foreclosure Case

The state’s highest court sent ripples through the real estate industry yesterday ruling that banks and lenders must have proper documentation before foreclosing on a home. The Supreme Judicial Court affirmed a 2009 Land Court decision requiring banks to have proper documentation before moving forward on foreclosures. The decision affects thousands of homes that have… Read more »

Miami Luxury Condo Sales Heating UP

Now that Miami real estate has rebounded and “value” is the operative word on everyone’s list, it is the perfect time to find a condo on The Beach. Miami Beach Real Estate Consultant Dario Stoka explains why it time to buy. “Three years ago, everyone was a genius when it came to purchasing a condo… Read more »

Where Are the Gay Neighborhoods in Chapel Hill & Durham, North Carolina?

Periodically, we’ll run guest columns from our member realtors on their areas, and issues that affect gay and lesbian buyers.  Here’s the next in the series – a great column from Wendy Tanson about Chapel Hill & Durham, North Carolina’s gay neighborhoods.  (click here to see Gay Realty Network’s Central North Carolina real estate page):… Read more »

Australian Real Estate Likely to Lose Value in 2011

House prices in Australia are expected to fall considerably during 2011, according to The Global Real Estate Trends report. The drop in value will be a result of government planned spending cuts, austerity measures and higher interest rates, the report explained. Australia was singled out as one of the top-performing markets during 2010 – alongside… Read more »

Washington DC #2 in Foreign Real Estate Investments

The District will be the second-most favorite city, both domestically and globally, for real estate investments among foreign investors this year, according to an annual survey of the D.C.-based Association of Foreign Investors in Real Estate. New York, which ranked No. 3 in 2010, is the No. 1 U.S. city for foreign real estate investments… Read more »

Canadian Real Estate Prices Likely to Climb in 2011

A new survey says Canada’s real estate market is heading into a stronger-than-expected year that will likely see home prices steadily rise, while overall transactions moderate. Royal LePage reports that average home prices are expected to rise 3 per cent to $348,600 in 2011, while the number of transactions is predicted to fall 2 per… Read more »

Featured Gay Friendly Realtor: Esty Kurti, Huntersville, NC

Periodically we’ll feature one of our real estate professionals here to let our readers know about some great Realtors, Mortgage Brokers, and Other Real Estate Professionals. Gay Friendly Durham Realtors and Real Estate Professionals Expect world class customer service from Esty – she works with both buyers and sellers. Esty covers the Charlotte area, and… Read more »

Seattle Real State Agents Hopeful for 2011

Local real estate professionals see recent positive economic news as foretelling good things for the housing market — which is just as well, given that the housing numbers themselves continue to provide little hope. “If you were in any mall in Washington state in December, you got the feeling that the economy is headed in… Read more »

What Will 2011 Bring for US Real Estate?

The 2010 residential real estate market was a fetid stew of foreclosed homes, short sales, falling home prices and massive shadow inventory topped off with bad corporate behavior by the lending institutions and anemic government programs designed to help troubled borrowers. But one man’s poison may be another man’s medicine. Low interest rates, reduced home… Read more »

New York Beats Out London With Real Estate Investors

The U.S. real estate market is improving, at least for foreign investment dollars, according to the Association for Foreign Investment in Real Estate, or AFIRE. “As the fear of a double-dip recession has faded, investors are becoming more enthusiastic about the prospects for the U.S. economy and are taking aim at real estate investment opportunities… Read more »

Featured Gay Friendly Realtor: David Ostrowski, Baltimore

Periodically we’ll feature one of our real estate professionals here to let our readers know about some great Realtors, Mortgage Brokers, and Other Real Estate Professionals. Gay Friendly Baltimore Realtors and Real Estate Professionals Since 2001, David has been able to help many satisfied clients both buy and sell homes in the Greater Baltimore Area…. Read more »

Where to Buy in the Los Angeles Luxury Market

The cultural and financial make-up of many neighborhoods in and around Los Angeles is changing on a continual basis. Homeowners are moving out of their current situations and buyers are moving up as the real estate market in Southern California continues to change with the seasons. Los Angeles luxury real estate can be found throughout… Read more »