Office Space Vacancies Monitored Closely As Numbers Begin To Fall

By CHUCK GREEN Office vacancy rates are being monitored closely as the commercial space industry continues to grapple with COVID’s effects on the workplace. In Los Angeles, office activity stagnated in the first quarter of 2022. One-fifth of total inventory remained vacant and rents remained unchanged, according to Greg Cornfield at Commercial Observer. Other major metro areas, including New York City, Boston, San Francisco, Washington DC, and Chicago, also continue to experience double-digit vacancy rates. Stemming from remote work due to the variant, San Francisco and DC reportedly kicked off the year with vacancies approaching 20%. In major U.S. markets vacancies of around 60% were recently shown by Kastle Systems, which measures occupancy by looking at foot traffic into offices.…

Will The Housing Market Boom Or Bust In 2022?

By KIMBERLEY HAAS As the spring selling season begins, people in the mortgage and real estate industries are speculating on whether 2022 will be a year of growth or the start of the end for a red-hot market that has favored sellers and forced up the price of housing in many parts of the country. Numbers from the start of the year look promising for growth. On Tuesday, S&P Dow Jones Indices released the latest results for the S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller Indices. A 19.2% annual gain was reported in January, up from 18.9% in December. The 10-City Composite annual increase was 17.5%, up from 17.1% in December. The 20-City Composite posted a 19.1% year-over-year gain, up from 18.6% in the previous…

Home Prices Are Up But Remain Far Below April 2006 Peak

Homes are less affordable than they were a year ago, but they largely remain more affordable than at the peak of the 2006 housing boom, according to First American Financial Corporation’s Real House Price Index. In January, the RHPI rose 27% from the year prior, making it the fastest-growing RHPI – and fastest YOY decline in affordability – since 2004. This was driven by a 21.7% increase in home prices and a 0.7% rise in rates. The RHPI measures price changes for single-family properties adjusted for the impact of income and interest rate changes on consumer house-buying power. As such, it also serves as a measure of affordability. Household income was up 5% from January 2021, but that gain was…

Despite Changes, Office Spaces Are Not A Thing Of The Past

By DOUG OHLEMEIER Despite many employees working from home and companies adopting hybrid work models, investors are still attracted to the land of cubicles. While office suites aren’t as packed with workers as before the pandemic, the commercial market remains strong. “There is investor interest in office properties,” said Stephen Newbold, National Director in the U.S. office of research for Colliers International, a Toronto, Ontario-based global real estate services and investment management company. “We are at a stage where we can fairly confidently say that we’re not going back to those (2020) levels. It may fluctuate a little, but my overarching view is we are stabilizing on vacancies and space on the market.” Observers aren’t sure how the new work…

Falling In Love With Homes To Have Your Heart Broken? Here’s Some Advice

By KIMBERLEY HAAS This Valentine’s Day, if your heart is broken because you keep falling in love with homes to lose them to other buyers, you are not alone. Cindy Flynn, Director of Corporate Services at Comey & Shepherd in Cincinnati, Ohio, said buyers in her market are currently submitting an average of eight offers before landing a home. Although buyers are getting a thicker skin, Flynn said, the process is still an emotional one. She suggests keeping an open mind, a positive attitude, and faith that this spring there will be more inventory available. “I hold true to the idea that everything happens for a reason,” Flynn told The Mortgage Note in an interview. “There are other fish in…

Austin Home Values Equivalent To Ecuador’s Total GDP

December 2021 saw a record annual surge in US home value, the largest gain seen in any December since at least 2001, according to a new analysis of Redfin’s Housing Value Index. U.S. home value rose 18.6% year-over-year (YOY) to $38.6 trillion. Austin, TX, saw home values double that, jumping 39.2% YOY. That shakes out to $365.9 billion, roughly the 2020 GDP of Ecuador and the biggest gain of any metro tracked by Redfin. December marked the 17th consecutive month of double-digit price gains as inventory shrank to a record low. Cape Coral, FL, saw the second-highest gains (36.9%), followed by Grand Rapids, MI (33.1%), Phoenix (32.8%), and Boise, ID (32.8%). Cape Coral and Phoenix have consistently made the list…