Monthly Archives: January 2013

Rethinking Your Mortgage

In previous articles, I have written a lot about buying a home or an investment property. Well, if you are fortunate enough to have a home and/or an investment property, or when you do have one in the future, you need to think about the mortgage and its long term effects. The most common loan… Read more »

Seattle Home Sales continue to rise

Seattle home sales were up for 2012, the first year since 2008!  However, with inventory so low, it continues to be a difficult time for buyers, but a good time for sellers.  If houses come on the market that are in good locations, good condition and good price, they are getting multiple offers! Most aren’t… Read more »

Today’s Real Estate Report: US Virgin Islands

According to NuWire Investor, the US Virgin Islands’ real estate market is improving: Since prices crashed in 2008, there has been a slump in the US Virgin Islands’ housing market. Both on St. Thomas and on St. John, the market climbed sharply in 2007, only to fall dramatically the following year. However, it is good… Read more »

Today’s Real Estate Report: Canada

Across Canada, home prices inched higher in December, even as sales were down year over year, CBC News reports: Canadian home prices ticked a little bit higher in December, with the average value of a resale home rising 1.6 per cent to $352,800, according to figures released today. Prices ticked higher even after a large… Read more »

How Can I Find a Gay Friendly City to Move To? HRC Has the Answer

If you’re considering moving to a more gay-friendly city, Gay reports that the Human Rights Campaign may have the answer for you: What are the nation’s most gay-friendly cities? The Human Rights Campaign’s first Municipal Equality Index (MEI) rates the public policies and legal rights of LGBT citizens in 137 U.S. cities in 50… Read more »

Today’s Real Estate Report: US Atlantic States

Today we’ll take a look at the real estate markets in states along the atlantic seaboard – Delaware, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, Washington DC, and West Virginia: DELAWARE: Delmarva Now is reporting that state officials are considering disclosure for seaside properties that may be vulnerable to sea rise from climate change: A… Read more »

Today’s Real Estate Report: Alaska

Hey all, We’re rejiggering the Gay Realty Watch blog a bit. Starting today, we’re going to focus each day on a specific region, bringing you a sampling of articles about the state of real estate in that region. Today, Alaska. Starting in Juneau – apparently the Juneau housing market is hot these days, with prices… Read more »

Omaha Home Sales Up 17% in 2012 Over 2011

Home sales in 2012 in the metro area were up 17 percent over the year before. That’s good news for anyone planning on selling or even buying a home this next year. More than 11,000 new and existing homes sold in the Omaha area last year. That’s the second highest number ever, second only to… Read more »

Tulsa 2012 Home Sales Jumped 16% Over 2011

Tulsa-area home sales for 2012 weren’t just well above 2011, they were the best since the recession hit. The Greater Tulsa Association of Realtors reports that 11,814 homes sold last year. That’s 16.2 percent ahead of 2011 and the second-best performance in the last five years, behind only the 12,111 homes that changed hands in… Read more »

Oahu Condo Prices, Sales Soared in December

Oahu’s housing market continued to show some positive growth in almost every area except for the median sales price of single-family homes last month, according to statistics from the Honolulu Board of Realtors. The median sales price dipped nearly 1 percent from $605,000 to $600,000, comparing December 2011 to December 2012. But other than that,… Read more »

Maui Condo Sales Hit 33 Month High in December

While home sales on Maui declined slightly in December 2012, condominium sales increased to a 33-month high of 138 units sold, according to statistics released Tuesday by the Realtors Association of Maui. Homes sales on Maui in December 2012 declined to 82 from 84 homes sold in November 2012. Condominium sales were up to 138… Read more »

Tips for First Time Buyers: Choosing a Realtor Before Finding a Home

Purchasing a first home is a wise financial investment and can provide priceless personal and emotional rewards as well. Home ownership offers an unprecedented sense of security, accomplishment, success, and perhaps most importantly, personal freedom. But before you begin to look at homes, it is a good idea to first shop around for a real… Read more »

How to Get Married in Vancouver, Washington

I work with a lot of people considering a move to the Pacific Northwest, and many of them are weighing the merits of Vancouver, Washington against Portland, Oregon….barely sepaarated by a state line and the Columbia River.  Now, marriage equality in the state of Washington is tipping the scales.  While Portland may be heaven for… Read more »

Featured Gay Friendly Realtor: Francine Lichtman, Maplewood, New Jersey

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. My passion is helping the LGBT community find their perfect home. The towns that I serve have many LGBT families amongst the population. I am a great resource as… Read more »

Hawaii’s Big Island Condo Prices Soaring

Big Island condominium prices ended on a high note last year while the median price of single-family homes saw only modest gains. In December, the median island-wide price of a condo on the Big Island jumped 53% to $328,500, compared to $212,500 in December 2011 according to data released by Hawaii Information Service and reported… Read more »

New Jersey Year-Over-Year Home Prices Were Down in November

Real estate analysts are cautiously optimistic about an improved housing market this year. But it’s been a long wait for a bounce-back. Year-over-year housing prices in New Jersey through November were down 0.7 percent, to $258,000, according to the website. Only five of the state’s 21 counties showed increases, led by Hudson (up 8.9… Read more »

Gay Friendly Toronto

Author: Tim Hewetson Source: With same sex orientation and unions being more widely recognized and accepted, LGBT buyers have burst into the real estate market. Finding a Realtor© who understands your lifestyle and needs is important. A LGBT Realtor© can be more in-tune with your needs, style, and budgetary requirements. Toronto has many ‘gay… Read more »

USA: Arizona, Nevada, Idaho, North Dakota and California Post Largest November Home Price Gains

U.S. home prices in November were up 7.4 percent from November 2011, the largest year-over-year increase in 6 1/2 years, the Associated Press reported. In terms of monthly gains, housing prices were up 0.3 percent from October to November, according to CoreLogic which told the AP that the gains have been “widespread” in the U.S…. Read more »

Featured Gay Friendly Realtor: Michael Bannet, West Hartford, Connecticut

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. With over a decade of experience as a Realtor(R) I bring an extensive understanding of what is needed to help you navigate the Connecticut real estate transaction process. I… Read more »

Portland, Maine Home Sales Rebounding After Recession

Sales of single-family homes in Portland in 2012 reached the highest level since 2007, before the recession. Sales totaled 427 homes last year, up about 14 percent from 2011, according to data compiled by the Maine Home Connection real estate firm. The last time sales topped that level was 2007, when sales totaled 488 single-family… Read more »

Living in Tacoma – Where Are the Gayborhoods?

Tucked between the big queer paradise known as Seattle and the little queer paradise known as Olympia you’ll find a resplendent medium-sized queer paradise: Tacoma, Washington. Equally damp and flannel-friendly as its neighboring cities, it’s pretty much raining lesbians in Tacoma. Tacoma hasn’t always had the most gleaming reputation, but over the past 15 years… Read more »

Mexico: Investing in Off the Plan Real Estate

Off the plan real estate investments are basically investing in projects in their very earliest stages; the land is purchased, some basic designs are just beginning to take shape, and perhaps the developer has begun to apply for necessary permits. No concrete progress has been made, however. This kind of investment can offer excellent returns,… Read more »

Update On San Diego’s Real Estate Market

The real estate market has historically always gone in cycles. This means that housing prices go up and they go down. When prices are up, it is considered a seller’s market and when prices are down, it is a buyer’s market. There are of course other variables that play a part, like mortgage interest rates;… Read more »

HUD releases December Housing Scorecard

HUD and the U.S. Dept. of the Treasury recently released the December edition of the Obama Administration’s Housing Scorecard, which showed the housing marketing bottomed out nationally and clearly turned a corner – as home values continued to rise and home sales remained strong in November – although officials caution that the overall recovery remains… Read more »

Freddie releases U.S. economic and housing market outlook

Freddie Mac has released its U.S. Economic and Housing Market Outlook for January showing that despite the fiscal uncertainties facing the country, consumer confidence has remained fairly resilient in recovering from its Great Recession lows, buoyed by improving labor and housing market news. Business owners and managers are more optimistic about the nation’s business outlook… Read more »

Featured Gay Friendly Realtor: David Ashton, Salem, Massachusetts

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. David Ashton is a member of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, located in Swampscott Massachusetts. David is proud to be associated with Coldwell Banker, one of the largest full service… Read more »

What’s the Boston Real Estate Market Like?

Patty in San Francisco writes: Dear Leslie, My husband just got a new job in Boston. We’re planning a visit soon and are wondering what to expect in terms of housing in the Boston suburbs. Welcome Patty! I can safely say that you’re one of the few people who won’t have sticker shock when you… Read more »

New Hampshire Home Sales Up 21% in 2012

Single-family home sales in New Hampshire increased by more than a fifth in 2012 from the previous year, a sign that buyers were taking advantage of flat prices and historically low interest rates, according to a new report on the New England housing market. The RE/MAX of New England 2013 Housing Forecast found that in… Read more »

New Condo Options in Washington, DC

“DC Metro [Region] Closes 2012 with Double-Digit Price Growth” shouts the headline of an article posted on the home page of Real Estate Business Intelligence on Jan. 10. It’s true that 2012 was a better year for D.C. Metro real estate, with median housing prices up 10.5 percent over 2011, and the number of sales… Read more »

Vermont Home Sales Up, Prices Down in 2012

Vermont housing sales were up in 2012, but prices were down. That was the capsule report heard by representatives of a number of housing interests who met last week at the Central Vermont Chamber of Commerce. The number of single-family houses sold in calendar 2012 increased in every Vermont county, according to data compiled by… Read more »

Flagstaff Home Sales Grew 15% in 2012

The number of single-family homes sold in the greater Flagstaff area during 2012 was up by 15 percent when compared with 2011. The Arizona Daily Sun reports that the 886 single-family homes sold in 2012 marked the highest number of homes sold in the last six years. The median home price in 2012 was down… Read more »

Bozeman, Montana Real Estate Market Strong

I moved to Bozeman, Montana in 2007 with my born and raised Montanan husband. After relocating to Bozeman I have watched the city evolve and grow from something that felt like a small town to a flourishing city. I was here to experience the terrible explosion in downtown Bozeman. The hailstorm of 2010 that thrashed… Read more »

Connecticut Home Sales Jumped 30% in November

Connecticut home sales surged along with the rest of New England in November compared with a year ago, RE/MAX of New England reported Thursday. Connecticut unit sales were up 30.2 percent to 2,937 from 2,256 in November 2011. Rhode Island had the biggest percentage increase at 58.5 percent although it was the only one of… Read more »

Northwest Home Prices Lagging Behind Rest of Nation

U.S. home prices rose slightly in October but the Pacific Northwest is trailing the rest of the nation. Lender Processing Services Inc., a Jacksonville, Fla.-based real estate research firm, said its index of U.S. home values rose slightly in October, but both Oregon and Washington saw price declines steep enough to rank among the worst… Read more »

Western New York Home Prices Were Up in November

Home prices rose sharply in November in Western New York, as both pending and closed sales increased, and the supply of homes available for buyers shrank. According to the Buffalo Niagara Association of Realtors, 766 homes changed hands in November, up 5.9 percent from 723 a year ago, and up 14.7 percent from two years… Read more »

Anchorage Home Inventory Low, Prices Rising

Players in Alaska’s construction and real estate industries have positive outlooks for 2013 despite some funding and regulatory uncertainty. … Single-family home sales were up 12 percent in November and the prices of those sales were up 5 percent, Droege said. While they may not continue at that rate, he said he expects those trends… Read more »

New Orleans Economic Recovery Number One in US

New Orleans continued to fare better than any other metro area in the U.S. in recovering from the recession during the third quarter of 2012, according to a report released Wednesday by the Brookings Institute. That same report put Baton Rouge in the middle of the pack in terms of the comeback, coming in 52nd… Read more »

Tucson Home Prices, Inventory and Sales on the Rise

Along with an increase in the prices of homes sold, inventory continued to climb for the fifth consecutive month in November. The average sales price hit $182,539, a new high for the year, according to the latest data from the Tucson Association of Realtors Multiple Listing Service. The median sales price continued to hold in… Read more »

Moving to Paris

Who hasn’t imagined enjoying a cafe au lait at a bustling sidewalk cafe, followed by a stroll along the Left Bank to a chic apartment overlooking the Eiffel Tower — where you write a best-selling novel or paint a legendary portrait? The notion of moving to Paris is a romantic fantasy for many people, but… Read more »

Featured Gay Friendly Realtor: Philip A. Ross III, Santa Fe, New Mexico

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. Philip will represent your best interests to the fullest of his abilities, applying knowledge, experience, connections, and skills to successfully help you with your real estate needs. “We are… Read more »

Featured Gay Friendly Realtor: Jay Iseli, Tacoma, Washington

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. I was born and raised in Tacoma and am intimately familiar with the Tacoma real estate market – including its neighborhoods, recreation and businesses. I have focused my business… Read more »

Phoenix Home Prices Likely to Continue Rise

By all accounts the Phoenix housing market is showing signs of stability and recovery as the value of a typical single-family home continues to rise. Median single-family home prices — the metric of normalcy in any metropolitan housing market — in the Phoenix area grew more than 25 percent reaching an average of $157,000 toward… Read more »

Preparing Your Home for Sale

Make sure the kitchen of the house you’re selling is clean, spare, updated and free of clutter. It will pay off exponentially when the house sells. (Photo by Pbroks13 via wikimedia commons) With the Washington Metro area housing remaining hot and competitive and the national housing recovery underway, maybe it’s time to put your house… Read more »

BofA to Settle Claim of LGBT Discrimination on Housing Loan

The Bank of America has agreed to settle a claim brought by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) on behalf of a lesbian couple that was denied financing for a home mortgage. Last year, HUD implemented sweeping nondiscrimination protections based on sexual orientation, gender identity, and marital status, and this settlement marks the… Read more »

Phoenix Real Estate Turn-Around Continues

The housing market in Phoenix continued its run as one of the hottest real estate markets in the U.S. last month. Sales of previously owned homes and condominiums hit their highest level for a November in seven years. The median home price for the Phoenix area hit $167,500 last month, a four-year high, according to… Read more »

Nashville Commercial, Industrial Real Estate Markets Looking Strong

Nashville’s office and industrial real estate markets ended the year on a promising note. The average asking rent for office space increased and the vacancy rate dipped in the fourth quarter, according to a new market report from commercial real estate brokerage Cassidy Turley. The area’s vacancy rate now stands at 10.6 percent, down from… Read more »

Pending Home Sales On The Rise In California

Pending home sales rose for a third consecutive month in November, indicating that demand for housing remains strong. The National Assn. of Realtors said that its pending home sales index, a forward-looking indicator based on the number of purchase contracts signed, rose 1.7% over October and was up 9.8% from November 2011. “Home contract activity… Read more »

Featured Gay Friendly Realtor: Vickie Wish, Fort Lauderdale, Florida

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. Vickie can help you through one of the largest financial decisions you’re ever likely to make – buying or selling a Fort Lauderdale area home. It’s very important to… Read more »

Denver Home Prices Return to 2007 Levels

According to the latest data from Metrolist(R), home prices have returned to a level not seen since 2007. Despite lagging prices earlier this year, the housing market is finishing the year strong., a comprehensive real estate search platform powered by Metrolist, is showcasing a historically low number of houses due to lack of inventory…. Read more »

Wilmington, North Carolina a Top Retirement Destination

Wilmington has been been selected by as a top retirement destination. “Where to Retire” magazine will profile the Port City in “8 Hot Towns to Snap Up Bargains Now” in the January/February issue. It’s available nationwide December 18. “Where to Retire” editor Mary Lu Abbott said the Wilmington area possesses qualities important to retirees. At… Read more »