Real Estate

NAHB: Multifamily developers weighed down by affordability challenges

Multifamily Vacancy Index reaches 8-year high
Multifamily developers’ confidence showed signs of weakness in the third quarter of 2018, attributed to mounting affordability and inventory concerns. One expert said Q3's MPI is another signal to policymakers that they should be paying more attention to housing market conditions as interest rates increase.
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Skyline AI inks deal with DWS Group to continue push to bring AI to real estate investing

German company becomes minority shareholder in Skyline
Back in August, Skyline AI, a real estate investment technology company that uses artificial intelligence for real estate investing, raised $18 million from various venture capital sources, including JLL’s tech startup investment fund, JLL Spark. And now, Skyline is making another move to continue its push to use AI to source, analyze, acquire, manage and sell institutional-grade real estate investments.
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Experts: Housing starts signal trouble ahead

Inventory and affordability concerns create supply and demand stalemate
In October, growth in housing starts was propelled by development in the multifamily sector, but some experts are warning that there could be trouble ahead for the housing market. In fact, several believe that affordability and inventory concerns are contributing to a turn in the market, negatively impacting homebuilder confidence.
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SEC: Former construction company CEO lied about post-Katrina business to raise stock price

Former CEO of Home Solutions of America fined and sanctioned
The former CEO and chief financial officer of a disaster restoration and construction business conspired with other company executives to lie about the company’s business in the wake of Hurricane Katrina to drive up the company’s stock price, the Securities and Exchange Commission said Tuesday.
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Multifamily projects propel housing starts

Single-family construction falls behind, again
Housing starts increased 1.5% in October, propelled by the multifamily sector, according to the latest report from the U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. One expert said this report is a stalemate between the demand and supply sides of the market, which are moving in different directions right now.
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Feds significantly expand investigation into all-cash real estate deals

Title insurance companies’ reporting threshold lowered to $300,000
Title insurance companies in 12 of the nation’s largest markets will now have to provide federal authorities with substantial details on all real estate deals of $300,000 or more if the buyer is paying all cash. The requirement comes at the hands of the Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, which is significantly expanding its investigation into whether foreign buyers are using shell companies to buy U.S. real estate in order to launder money.
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Report: Home sales, inventory locked in standstill

RE/MAX reports inventory increased year-over-year for the first time in a decade
In October, a decrease in year-over-year home sales contributed to the first year-over-year inventory increase in a decade, according to the RE/MAX National Housing Report. RE/MAX CEO Adam Contos said the market continues to move toward equilibrium.
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Redfin expands home selling options in Seattle, will clean and stage home, too

For an additional fee, of course
Last year, Redfin rolled out a new service called "Redfin Concierge," where the online brokerage will "deep clean" and stage a home on a homeowner’s behalf to aid in the sale of the property, all for a 2% listing fee. The program originally launched in Los Angeles and Washington, D.C., before expanding into San Francisco in February of this year. And now, Redfin is bringing the enhanced listing program to its own backyard of Seattle.
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