Thursday, August 4, 2011

Housing News Digest August 4

Clear Capital: Seasonal Price Gains Haven't Changed Housing Picture
But even recent gains off the record low experienced earlier this year have not been enough to change the broader housing picture, Clear Capital says. Its latest reading of national home prices shows a decline of 7.9 percent since June 2010.

Only a handful of Northeast markets bucked the trend of year-over-year price declines, with the broader New York City area, Rochester, Pittsburgh, and Washington, D.C. posting positive year-over-year price growth, according to Clear Capital’s report.

Commerce City Authority buys Greyhound Park
The property is one of three identified urban renewal area within the city. It was purchased by the URA to help the city achieve its vision of redeveloping it as a mixed-use development. Its close proximity to major highways and two commuter rail lines, as well as designation as a Colorado Enterprise Zone, make it an ideal infill development site, officials said. As an enterprise zone, tax credits may be available to businesses that develop there. Dog racing at the site stopped in 2008. It currently is being used for off-track betting.

Mortgage rates plummet to record lows as economy wobbles
Mortgage rates fell sharply this past week, hitting record lows, as bond yields declined and signs of a weakening economy dampened consumer sentiment further, according to Freddie Mac's latest Primary Mortgage Market Survey.

The 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage hit its lowest level of 2011, coming in at 4.39% compared to 4.55% last week and 4.49% a year ago. The 15-year FRM hit a historic low of 3.54%, down from 3.66% last week and 3.95% last year.

Economy at Stall Speed May Signal U.S. Descent Into Recession: Peter Coy
Economics isn’t rocket science, but the U.S. economy is a little like a rocket. If it has enough thrust, it can escape the tug of economic gravity. Not enough, and it just might go into a tailspin. Economists at the Federal Reserve and elsewhere are studying whether today’s slow growth is a precursor to an outright recession -- and if so, why.

It’s widely accepted that a slowly growing economy is more likely to tip into recession, for the obvious reason that it’s already too close to the line; any shock can knock it into negative territory. And today’s slow growth is at least in part a symptom of underlying problems such as consumer indebtedness, high energy prices, and the jitters induced by debt ceiling brinkmanship, Bloomberg Businessweek reports in its August 8-14 edition.

Having trouble finding an apartment?
VIDEO: COLORADO SPRINGS, COLO. -- If you are in the market for an apartment in the Colorado Springs area, you may be having a difficult time as vacancy rates are low in and around the city.

A recent study out of the University of Denver found the vacancy rate in the Colorado Springs Metro area is currently 6.4 percent. That is up slightly from 5.8 percent in 2010.