Category Archives: Real Estate Law

Topics that are of interest to the real estate community, with an emphasis on commercial, industrial, or multi-dwelling units.

Housing Pressure: Many Nonbank Lenders are Shutting Down

Wall Street Journal writer Christina Rexrode reported recently that, “Small and midsize U.S. mortgage firms are trimming staff, putting themselves up for sale and closing up shop at a clip not seen in years, a sign of the mounting pressure on the housing market as interest rates rise and a long economic expansion matures. “The number… Continue Reading

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Proposed Regulations Would Allow for More Home Sales Without Human Appraisals

Wall Street Journal writers Ryan Dezember and Cezary Podkul reported last week that, “The battle between man and bot has a new front: your mortgage. “Federal regulators have proposed loosening real-estate appraisal requirements to enable a majority of U.S. homes to be bought and sold without being evaluated by a licensed human appraiser. That potentially opens… Continue Reading

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Recent Index Shows Slow Growth in Home-Prices

Bloomberg writer Sho Chandra reported yesterday that, “Home-price gains in 20 U.S. cities grew in September at the slowest pace in almost two years, adding to signs that buyer interest is waning amid higher mortgage rates and elevated property values. “The 20-city index of property values increased 5.1 percent from a year earlier, the least since… Continue Reading

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Real-Estate Use of So-Called 1031 Exchanges, Survived the GOP Tax Overhaul

Robyn A. Friedman indicated this week at The Wall Street Journal Online that, “The tax overhaul enacted last year made a lot of changes, but one provision cherished by real-estate investors survived: so-called 1031 exchanges. “It’s the name for a tax break that lets you defer capital-gains taxes on the sale of a property used… Continue Reading

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As Rates Rise, Mortgage Applications Fall

Bloomberg writer Scott Lanman reported today that, “A gauge of U.S. mortgage applications fell last week to the lowest level in almost four years as borrowing costs hit the highest since 2010, adding to challenges for the housing market. “The Mortgage Bankers Association’s market composite index fell 4 percent in the week ending Nov. 2 to… Continue Reading

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Home-Price Gains in 20 U.S. Cities Slowest Since 2016

Bloomberg writer Sarah Foster reported recently that, “Home-price gains in 20 U.S. cities cooled in August to the slowest pace since 2016, as high borrowing costs and property values limit buyer interest, according to S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller data released Tuesday. “August marks the fifth consecutive month that annual price gains in the 20-city index decelerated,… Continue Reading

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Freddie Mac Data Shows 78% of People Now Say that Renting is More Affordable than Owning

Wall Street Journal writer Laura Kusisto reported earlier this month that, “More than three-quarters of Americans now view renting as more affordable than owning a home, the latest sign that rising mortgage rates and higher home prices will continue to pressure home sales. “Some 78% of people now say that renting is more affordable than owning,… Continue Reading

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Average Homeownership Tenure Increases

Bloomberg writer Alexandre Tanzi reported last week that, “There’s no place like home. “The median length of time Americans have owned their homes rose to a record of more than eight years in the third quarter, according to ATTOM Data Solutions. That’s up from 4.5 years when the recession ended in June 2009.” The Bloomberg article… Continue Reading

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Number of New Houses on the Market Highest Since January 2009

Bloomberg writer Sho Chandra reported yesterday that, “U.S. purchases of new homes fell more than estimated in September to the weakest pace since December 2016, adding to signs that a lack of affordability is crimping demand, according to government data Wednesday. “The results fell below all forecasts in Bloomberg’s survey of economists and showed downward revisions for… Continue Reading

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Mortgage Rates Increase, Cost of borrowing, highest in Over Seven Years

Wall Street Journal writers  Laura Kusisto and Christina Rexrode reported last week that, “Mortgage rates hit their highest level in more than seven years this week at nearly 5%, a level that could deter many home buyers and represents another setback for the slumping housing market. “The average rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage rose… Continue Reading

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