Monday, February 20, 2012

Housing News Digest, February 20

Wave of Deferred Bank Repossessions Expected in 2012\
NEW YORK, Feb. 20, 2012 -- /PRNewswire/ -- According to, some 600,000 properties in the U.S. are reported to begin the foreclosure process as the foreclosure industry begins to function more normally.

Many of the properties that began the foreclosure process in the third and fourth quarters of 2011 will become bank-owned properties in 2012, and many will also end up as short sales. Lenders continue processing more of the 2011 delayed delinquencies, plus new foreclosures caused by high and extended unemployment. Homeowners with severely underwater mortgages push smaller but continuous surges of foreclosures also depressing home prices.

Local banks starting to make comeback
Banks in the Colorado Springs area took another big step toward recovery during 2011 as they reduced delinquent loans and boosted profits from operations, according to recently released 2011 data from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.

Some Longmont-area homes cost more than Twin Peaks Mall
Sounds like a lot of money -- until you consider that NewMark Merrill Mountain States came up with $8.5 million and got itself a whole shopping mall.

When it was announced last week that the company bought the troubled Twin Peaks Mall, some observers viewed the purchase price as shockingly low.

"It's incomprehensible," said Scott Franklund of Legendary Properties, a Boulder company that deals in luxury Colorado real estate. "It was the buy of the century."

Crescent Real Estate Holdings: LEED Status Sells Office Buildings
Dallas-based Crescent Real Estate Holdings LLC has announced that its three Class A office properties in Denver received Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certifications from the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) under the Existing Buildings (EB) rating system.

Johns Manville Plaza (pictured left), a 29-story, 675,400 square-foot Class A office property, received LEED EB Gold status, while the 42-story 707 17th Street property and the 10-story Peakview Tower received LEED EB Silver status. John Zogg, managing director of leasing for Crescent's Denver portfolio, says that LEED certification is a major selling point for commercial office property.

U.S. Housing Affordability Index Reaches New Record High
Nationwide housing affordability, as measured by the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Opportunity Index (HOI), rose to a record level during the fourth quarter of 2011, while prospective home buyers continued to feel the constraints of tighter credit standards and a soft economy.