Monday, March 5, 2012

Housing News Digest, March 5

‘The House’ to shelter homeless teens
So, it may come as a surprise that an estimated 160 teenagers in the Grand Valley are couch surfing, living out of their cars or finding a place to sleep each night tucked into the bushes by the Colorado River.

For more than a year, John Mok-Lamme has been pecking away at a solution to this largely unseen need for a homeless-teen refuge.

Meadows housing plan hung up over fee waivers
GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado — Development approvals have been granted for a 60-unit low-income rental housing project at Glenwood Meadows.

Now, however, developers say they need all of the estimated $474,000 in fee waivers requested from the city to complete the financing arrangement for the project.

Rental rates on the rise as vacancies drop (VIDEO
The Colorado Division of Housing says rents statewide are up more than three percent from last year.

The Fort Collins-Loveland area is the worst, with an increase of more than nine percent.

According to the division of housing, the biggest problem is there are not enough apartments to meet the demand.

U.S. Housing Lays Foundation for Recovery as Buyers Coaxed Back
Dan Kowalyshyn figures he owes about $200,000 more than what his four-bedroom house is worth today. It faces a cul-de-sac where three of the six homes have been lost to foreclosure since his $570,000 purchase in 2006.

The software developer has decided to keep up on his mortgage payments because he sees signs of improvement outside his window. Trucks drive by to deliver lumber for houses being constructed by PulteGroup Inc. (PHM), KB Home and Meritage Homes Corp. (MTH)

The paradox of the housing boom and bust
For the past several years, I have marveled at a basketball court planted in the middle of an empty field on the outskirts of Delta, Colo., a town of 9,000 people in rural western Colorado. It's a good-looking court with a smooth cement surface and nets on the rims. But I never see anyone playing on it, or even driving on the curvy road that leads to it.

The court is deserted because the field around it was never developed as planned. It's just one of many partially built subdivisions halted by the great housing bust of 2008. Though streets, park and fire hydrants have all been installed, people aren't buying the lots or building homes. Just one new house -- probably the model home -- sits several hundred yards away from the court.