Monthly Archives: December 2011

Some Good Signs for the Real Estate Market

Some Good Signs for the Real Estate Market

Sales ticked up for existing homes and new homes, several real estate market indicators revealed last week, pointing to a housing market that may finally be entering recovery mode. 

In the most recent report, the Census Bureau reported that the new-home market continued its rebound, with sales of new houses once again inching up last month. New-home sales rose 1.6 percent from October to November to an annualized rate of 315,000, and sales were up nearly 10 percent compared to November 2010. 

The median sales price of a new home in November was $214,100, the Census Bureau reported, and the inventory of new houses nationwide decreased to a six-month supply at the current sales pace. 

"Inventories of new homes are very low: There's nothing on the shelf, so any increase in new home sales will translate directly into new housing starts," Bob Denk, senior economist at the National Association of Home Builders, told CNNMoney. "That means putting people back to work."

Other recent good news for the housing market: November sales of existing homes increased 12 percent year-over-year, new-home building starts were up nearly 21 percent year-over-year, and mortgage rates reached new record lows last week, pushing housing affordability even higher. 

Source: “New Home Sales Edge Up,” CNNMoney

Record $88 Million Sale for NYC Condo

Russian billionaire Dmitriy Rybolovlev is reportedly paying the full asking price of $88 million for a New York City condo for his 22-year-old daughter, considered the highest individual transaction ever recorded in New York City, according to Forbes.

The 6,744-square-foot apartment was owned by Sandy Weill, the former Citigroup chairman.

“This sale is an outlier. It works out to be about $13,000 per sq. foot, the highest on record, for anything, that has ever occurred,” Jonathan Miller, chief executive of real estate appraiser Miller Samuel, told “What is ironic is that when Sandy Weill bought it for less than half this amount, he paid the highest price per square foot to date in that building, around, $6,400 per square foot. He is again setting a record.”

The Manhattan condo features 10 rooms, including four bedrooms and more than a 2,000-square-foot wraparound terrace. Rybolovlev’s daughter plans to use the apartment when attending the college in the United States. 

The previous sales record in New York City was $53 million for a townhouse, set before the housing crisis.

Source: “Billionaire’s Daughter Pays Record Sum for NYC Pad,” (Dec. 19, 2011)


10 Most-Searched Real Estate Markets Online

Chicago continued to hold onto the No. 1 spot for most searched for real estate market at in November. What other markets did potential home buyers have their eyes on last month? releases its top search ranking from November based on 146 metro areas. 

The following are the 10 top-searched metro areas from November at

1. Chicago

Median list price: $192,900

2. Detroit, Mich.

Median list price: $84,900

3. Los Angeles-Long Beach, Calif.

Median list price: $329,000

4. Phoenix-Mesa, Ariz.

Median list price: $164,700

5. Atlanta

Median list price: $156,900

6. Philadelphia, Pa.-N.J.

Median list price: $229,900

7. Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, Fla. 

Median list price: $144,200

8. Las Vegas

Median list price: $122,000

9. Dallas

Median list price: $194,900

10. Riverside-San Bernardino, Calif. 

Median list price: $199,000



10 States Hit Hardest by Foreclosures

10 States Hit Hardest by Foreclosures

For the 59th month in a row, Nevada continues to have the highest foreclosure rate in the country — despite a new law that took effect in October that changed the state’s foreclosure process and was expected to curtail foreclosures there.

Although foreclosures were down 43 percent year-over-year in Nevada, its foreclosure rate still remained higher than any other state.

The following are the top 10 states with the highest foreclosure rates in the country in November, according to RealtyTrac data. 

  1. Nevada: 1 in every 175 home received a foreclosure filing in November
  2. California: 1 in every 211 homes
  3. Arizona: 1 in every 256 homes
  4. Utah: 1 in every 290 (This state saw a 74 percent increase in November from October in foreclosure activity.)
  5. Georgia: 1 in every 330 homes
  6. Michigan: 1 in every 330 homes
  7. Florida: 1 in every 358 homes
  8. Illinois: 1 in every 427 homes
  9. Ohio: 1 in every 500 homes
  10. South Carolina: 1 in every 517 (This is the first time South Carolina has made it into the top 10 for foreclosure activity since RealtyTrac began tracking in 2005.)

Source: RealtyTrac

Prudential Sells Real Estate Business…

Prudential is getting out of the real estate business, selling off its real estate brokerage and relocation services business to Brookfield Residential Property Services this week.

However, some Prudential real estate brokerage franchisees will be able to continue to use the Prudential brand, depending on the terms of their franchise agreements.

Brookfield residential real estate franchises will now operate in 50 U.S. states, 10 Canadian provinces, Mexico, and Portugal, along with plans to expand into Brazil, China, and India. It boasts a network of about 80,000 real estate agents and 2,800 real estate brokerage locations, according to the company. 

"This transaction creates a global employee relocation services and real estate franchising leader," Graham Badun, CEO of Toronto-based Brookfield Residential Property Services, said in a statement. "We have now increased the breadth and depth of our service offering, keeping pace with the evolving needs of our clients around the world."

The terms of the sale were not released. 

Source: Brookfield Residential Property Services

NEW Pasadena No Smoking Ordinance

NEW Pasadena No Smoking Ordinance

The City of Pasadena has passed a no-smoking regulation. Effective January 1, 2013, it will be unlawful to smoke in any common area, patio, balcony, or inside a unit within any multi-family building (defined as two or more units).

Effective January 1, 2012, property owners/managers must post No Smoking signs in the common areas of their building. Also, all leases/rental agreements AND purchase agreements must contain a reference to the prohibition AND a copy of the ordinance.

The City of Pasadena ordinance will be available on the PFAR website. It should be included with your purchase and lease agreements as of January 1, 2012. The City is preparing a disclosure document for use by property owners and real estate agents. As soon as it becomes available, it will be available on the PFAR website.

Please note that enforcement of the ban, when it becomes effective January 1, 2013, will be the responsibility of the City’s Department of Health and NOT the property owner/manager, the HOA, or the real estate agent.

If you have questions, please call PFAR Government Affairs Director Laura Olhasso at (626) 795-2455.