Investments

Former bassist for The Ataris admits to masterminding multi-million-dollar real estate scam

Scheme defrauded more than 100,000 people
The former bass player in The Ataris, a rock band that gained notoriety with a 2003 cover of Don Henley’s “The Boys of Summer,” admitted in court late last week that he spearheaded a massive real estate scam that defrauded more than 100,000 people nationwide out of more than $25 million.
Read More

Cherre raises $9 million to help investors buy real estate using AI

Real estate data platform closes seed funding round
Cherre, a nascent real estate data platform that uses AI to help investors identify real estate acquisition targets, just raised $9 million in seed funding to grow its business. Companies using Cherre’s platform gain access to information like property history, demographics and market comparisons, which can be used to improve their decision-making process.
Read More

WSJ: California becomes first state to mandate gender-balanced boards

Gov. Jerry Brown signed the bill into law on Sunday, legal fights ahead for the ambitious diversity bid
Over the weekend, California became the first state to mandate that publicly held companies based in the state have at least two to three women on their boards of directors. The new law mandates that all publicly traded companies with headquarters in the state to have at least one woman on their boards by the end of next year and that by 2021, companies with at least five board directors will have to include two or three women or face financial penalties.
Read More

Compass raises another $400 million, now valued at $4.4 billion

SoftBank invests in real estate tech company, again
Is Compass the one real estate tech startup to rule them all? The company certainly has enough money to do so. Compass announced this week that it just raised another $400 million in its Series F funding round, which reportedly values the company at $4.4 billion.
Read More

Here's the skinny on Opportunity Zones

What you need to know about Opportunity Zones: pros, cons, goals
Opportunity zones are probably the buzziest potential solution for the affordability crisis and local economic stimulus out there at the moment. So, here’s the skinny on how they would work, some of the risks they present and what they are meant to accomplish.
Read More

WSJ: Millennials are opting for all-in-one co-living situations

Co-living is gaining popularity and increasing the scope of its services, and it seems to be a hit
Co-living properties are growing in popularity and scope. According to a feature by Christopher Mims in The Wall Street Journal, communities that plan out residents’ social lives and take care of all the little time-wasting adult annoyances that pull at their attention after they punch out are fast carving out a niche for themselves in the multifamily market.
Read More

Ocwen’s $360 million acquisition of PHH to close in days

Deal gets thumbs-up from regulators, but NYDFS has some conditions
Ocwen Financial’s $360 million acquisition of PHH Corp. is set to close within the next two weeks after approvals are received from all relevant regulatory agencies and governmental entities, the companies announced Friday morning. But the companies didn’t skate through the approval process totally unscathed. Finalizing the deal comes with some conditions from the New York Department of Financial Services, which has long been a thorn in Ocwen’s side.
Read More

Senior home equity continues to smash records

Hits nearly $7 trillion
Senior housing wealth just keeps climbing. According to the NRMLA/RiskSpan Reverse Mortgage Market Index, aggregate home equity levels for homeowners 62 hit $6.9 trillion in the second quarter of 2018. That’s a $130 billion jump from the previous quarter. But will they utilize these funds in retirement?
Read More