Aug 05 2011

Week in Review: What We Liked From the Week That Was

Records are being broken everywhere we look. First, record temperatures are blazing across half of the country; check out The Daily Beast’s list of the hottest cities, many of which are in the Lone Star State. Mortgage rates also hit the charts, as 15 year fixed rates hit a new low of 3.52%, while the 30 year fixed hit a near-low of 4.45%.

There is big real estate news about 90 miles off of the coast of Miami… Cuba’s National Assembly approved a bill that makes it legal for citizens to buy homes, which has been banned since 1959.

Now on to a much larger country with implications on U.S. soil… Russia. Bloomberg reports that amongst Russia’s elite, owning a mansion in the U.S. in cities like Miami or New York is a serious status symbol. This group is snatching up multi-million dollar properties, some of the most expensive in the world, from coast to coast.

The world’s tallest building will be somewhat American. The Saudi Arabian structure, named Kingdom Tower will stand 3,281 feet tall and will be designed by Chicago-based firm Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill. The building will house a hotel, luxury condominiums and offices. This will truly be an architectural feat!

The AARP is reporting that nearly 32% of adults over age 50 say the value of their homes has severely diminished,  resulting in many deciding to postpone retirement. For retirees who are looking to move, AARP The Magazine developed a list of the most affordable places to retire based on home prices, property and sales tax rates, recreation and health care. Portland, Tulsa and Gainesville, Ga. are the top three.

Do you long to go back to the good old days of being a college student? SwitchYard Media compiled a list of the best college towns for adults.  The “charming, quaint and distinctively Dixie” Grand Oaks, Oxford, Mississippi, home to the University of Mississippi, takes top honors. Speaking of college, did your alma mater make Princeton Review’s list of biggest party schools?

If you travel via plane, there is a pretty good chance you have experienced flight delays. The Wall Street Journal this week reported that Newark International Airport in New Jersey is home to 40 of the 100 most-delayed flights in the nation.  Yikes!

Talk about the irony… the founder and former CEO of ForSalebyOwner.com hired an outside broker after his house, which was marketed through online classified ads and the FSBO site, sat on the market for six months.

Stay cool this weekend!

Sherry Chris

President and CEO
Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate LLC

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