Archive | Real Estate

Minnesota mortgage fraud

We haven’t seen this very often. An agent from Rosemount was sentenced to 3 years probation for fraud in the sale of houses, mostly in North Mineapolis. He was aparently invloved with 2 other men who owned a Roseville real estate company.


His part of the fraud? He agreed to close on up to 175 houses when he knew that many of the applications submitted for loans were fraudulent.


I would imagine if every mortgage broker in the US who pushed through loan applications knowing or suspecting the information contained in thoses applications was false were sent to jail, we would need to build a LOT of new jails to house them all.


Unfortunately only a very few who were responsible for the mess we are in will ever receive any punishment at all for their abuses.

30 year fixed rates goes up to 4.6%

Freddie Mac says 30 year fixed loan rates have increased to 4.6% from 4.51%.

Average 15 year are up to 3.75% ( the lowest point of the year so far was 2 weeks ago, at 3.67).

5 year adjustables are at 3.30, while 1 year adjustables are at 3.01.

These don’t include points.

(as of 7/7/11)

Prices lowest since crises began.

The latest Standard & Poors S&P Shiller Home Price Index which came out Tuesday doesn’t bode well for the Cities at all.

In case you don’t know, I am referring to an index which is a composite 20 metropolitan area indices. It is a 3 month moving average of house prices.

Only one of the 20 metro areas showed an increase in prices from a year ago. That means 19 showed prices continuing to fall. And the greatest decline in prices, percentage-wise from those 19 metro areas – was…. yes you guessed it – Minneaplois.

Housing prices fell 10% in March from the same time frame in 2010.

It looks like prices have dipped to the lowest point since this real estate crisis started.

How low can we go? Good question. I wish I knew the answer.

We need more of this.

With help from a federal program called the Neighborhood Stabilization Program, around 591 Minneapolis homes are being targeted for rehab and future development (68%), demolition (19%), and the remainder offered to potential buyers with financial incentives (13%).

These are the types of pro-active measures I like to see. The homes are in some of the worst affected by foreclosures and this can provide powerful incentives, not only for buyers to get back in the market, but also in areas that have been hit the hardest. The only way these areas of the city have a chance to rebound is to get people in who will continue to work and take pride in their neighborhoods.

The city is planning a tour (along with LiveMSP) to show 41 of these homes. I hope they have a huge turnout and are encourage more of these policies, here and across the country.

Maps of the homes and route can be found here.


After an entire month of investigating whether or not there were any abuses in the mortgage industry prior to the financial crises – the Federal Reserve found absolutely No wrongful foreclosures! Well I feel better now. The Fed said no abusive mortgage practices took place – so that should stop all those liberal whiners, eh?

No wrongful foreclosures

No wonder our elected (and unelected) officials have so little credibility.

Minnesota real estate sales up.

The good news is house sales in Minnesota showed an increase last month. The bad news – prices are continuing downward.

Tha average sales price of a home in MN fell 5.1 percent to just under 131k. A year ago that figure was 138k.

The Cities had almost an 11% increase in sales.

A lot of the sales were from Banks unloading foreclosed properties and short sales. It’s a painful process for many to see their homes continue to drop in value- but I think we have to go through it in order to get the market back to equilibrium.

The one good effect is that the overall housing inventory is falling substantially as these distressd properties are being snatched up. That is necesary to bring a balance back between supply and demand.

Did Metro Commercial real estate demand bottom out in 2010?

Twin Cities commercial real estate market likely bottomed out during 2010, according to NorthMarq Real Estate Services’ annual Compass report issued Monday.

The report estimates there was 15.8 percent combined vacancy for all types of commercial office, industrial and retail properties at the end of 2010, down 0.5 percent from where it was at the end of 2009. It’s a big difference from 2008 to 2009, when overall vacancy jumped 3 percent.

Despite the results, NorthMarq reports that “fundamentals are still very weak across the office, industrial and retail leasing markets. Recent economic indicators such as the unemployment rate have not been overly encouraging, setting the stage for a slow rebound in 2011.”

The Twin Cities office market improved in the second half of 2010 for landlords, resulting in “modest, but encouraging” positive absorption of 202,000 square feet. Absorption is a change in the amount of total leased space from one point in time to another.

The vacancy rate for the office market was unchanged in the second half of the year at 19.9 percent, with four of the seven sub-markets in the Twin Cities maintaining vacancy rates over 20 percent.

Read the entire article at Minneapolis / St. Paul Business Journal.

Read more: NorthMarq: Metro real estate demand bottoms out |

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