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Real Estate News | Sponsored Content

Celebrity Real Estate: Seth Meyers, John Legend, Stella McCartney

By Laura Vecsey …

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Large Cash Home Buyers in Florida Can’t Hide Anymore

By Natalie Wise

Miami and Manhattan homebuyers won’t be able to keep their cash real estate deals under a beach umbrella any longer. The Treasury Department wants to keep an eye on these transactions, so it has introduced new rules for transparency.

Because many cash sales take place under corporations that shield the buyer’s identity, the new rules require title companies to unmask the buyer if the transaction totals more than $3 million. The new rule will also show how many cash sales involve foreign investors.

The majority of cash real estate deals happen in Florida — in fact, eight of the top 10 cash markets are in the state, with Miami as the No. 1 cash market. In 2012, 70 percent of all real estate transactions in Miami were cash. This has slowed down as the economy has improved, but 55 percent of real estate sales are cash in Miami, which is why the government is setting its sights on the details of the market.

Sarasota is the No. 2 cash market, at 53.4 percent, and in Fort Myers, 51.8 percent of transactions are in cash. In Daytona Beach, just under 50 percent of the sales are cash, while in Tampa, 47.8 percent of home sales are cash. …

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Many Homeowners Owe More Than Twice Their Homes’ Value

By Natalie Wise

Despite many marked improvements in the housing market across the country, a large number still owe more than their homes are worth. In the case of 820,000 unlucky homeowners, they owe more than twice the value of their homes.

This situation, termed “negative equity,” meaning the home holds no equity and more is owed that it is worth, is popularly referred to as being “underwater.” At peak negative equity, 31.4 percent of mortgage holders were sinking to some level in the first quarter of 2012.

As of the fourth quarter of 2015, things have certainly improved, with only 13.1 percent of mortgage holders underwater, according to Zillow. But that percentage still represents 6.3 million homeowners who owe more than their homes are worth. That’s a decline of 27 percent from 2014, when 8.7 million homeowners were underwater.

Of those 6.3 million, 13 percent of them owe more than twice what their homes are worth. That is 820,000 borrowers who are nearly drowning in their mortgages. …

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Best Places to Buy a Home for 5 Popular Occupations

By Natalie Wise

Five common occupations have greatly varying incomes around the country. This makes buying a home a vastly different experience for, say, a firefighter in Riverside, Calif., than one in Charlotte, N.C. Zillow’s affordability index shows the best places to buy homes according to occupation.

The firefighter in Riverside can afford much more house than the firefighter in Charlotte. In Charlotte, a firefighter makes a median salary of $41,000, 19 percent of which goes toward housing, so an affordable house would be around $180,000.

In Riverside, a firefighter makes an average of $107,000 a year. They do spend more on housing — 26 percent of their income — but that allows them to purchase a home up to $653,000. In Tampa, the median firefighter salary is $56,000, and 75.9 percent of homes — up to $251,000 — are affordable. …

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‘Gayborhoods’ Offer Higher Home Values

By Christina Sturgis

People may view Fort Lauderdale as a tourist-friendly coastal city, but the real estate experts at Zillow have found another characteristic worth noting: the Poinsettia Heights neighborhood is a “gayborhood,” and it’s good for real estate values.

It’s called the Gayborhood Phenomenon in the book “Zillow Talk: The New Rules of Real Estate.” Zillow determined which neighborhoods have the highest percentages of gay-partner households from the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey.

“Over the past forty years, home prices in historically gay neighborhoods have steadily outperformed average prices for the metros in which they’re located,” write Zillow CEO Spencer Rascoff and Chief Economist Stan Humphries.

In Poinsettia Heights, an estimated 28 percent of households are headed by same-sex partners. The region embraces these nontraditional families. For example, the city of Wilton Manors, which adjoins Fort Lauderdale, has a page on its official website devoted to gay life, and says the local elementary school is high in quality and includes the children of many LGBT families. …

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Celebrity Real Estate: Kelsey Grammer, David Geffen, Craig Newmark

By Laura Vecsey …

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Celebrity Real Estate: Donald Trump, Kevin Jonas, Merv Griffin

By Laura Vecsey

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Celebrity Real Estate: Christie Brinkely, Scottie Pippen, Matt Lauer

By Laura Vecsey

Christie Brinkley Lists Beloved Estate

Christie Brinkley may have a little more freedom to meet up with her “new” beau, John Mellencamp, who lives in South Carolina. The Uptown Girl has listed her 20-acre waterfront compound for $29.5 million. With her son off to college in the fall, Brinkley said she’s preparing to be an empty nester.

Dubbed Tower Hill for the 50-foot observation tower attached to the historic home, the property has been under Brinkley’s ownership for 18 years. The property was a bone of contention during Brinkley’s tabloid-fodder divorce from Peter Cook. With Atlantic Ocean frontage to the south, Tower Hill also boasts views to the north toward Connecticut.

Scottie Pippen Selling Mansion
Former Chicago Bulls’ star Scottie Pippen is looking to sell his suburban Chicago mansion. The Naismith Basketball Hall of Famer is seeking $3.1 million for the 10,000-square-foot home that comes complete with an indoor basketball court – emblazoned with a rendering of Pippen’s No. 33 jersey. The Highland Park home sits on almost three acres. …

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Celebrity Real Estate: Cher, Ben Stiller, Hope Solo

By Laura Vecsey …

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Which Florida Home Buyers Hit It Lucky?

By Christina Sturgis …

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Celebrity Real Estate: Puff Daddy, Playboy Mansion, Rebel Wilson

By Laura Vecsey …

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More Adults Living With Roommates as Rents Soar

By Natalie Wise

Zillow research shows that rent as a percentage of the national median income is reaching an all-time high. It’s no surprise, then, that more American households are doubling up. That is, more and more working adults are sharing their living spaces with at least one other adult who is not their spouse or partner.

Nationally, one can expect to spend nearly 30 percent of the national median income (which is $53,216) on rent, an all-time high that is putting the squeeze on more and more households. Instead of moving to a smaller home or trading a longer commute for less-expensive housing, more and more adults are taking on roommates.

In 2006, only 27.4 percent of adults were sharing their living spaces. In 2010, the number climbed to 30.8 percent, and it keeps rising. In 2012, a full 32 percent of adults were sharing their homes with roommates. The trend is nationwide, but particularly prevalent in major metros and areas where rents are substantially higher.

In San Francisco, for example, rent was only 25 percent of income in 2000. By 2012, it was up to 40 percent of income. Interestingly, households that were sharing rent rose from 24 percent to 39 percent during the same time.

San Francisco isn’t even the city with the highest concentration of doubled-up households. In Los Angeles, nearly 50 percent (47.9 percent) of adults live with roommates. In Miami, 44.5 percent of adults live with others who help pay the bills. New York City sees 42.5 percent of adults have roommates, and in San Diego, it’s 39.7 percent.

In the Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater area, 32 percent of adults live with roommates, with an estimated 30 percent of income going toward rent. The median rent is $1305 a month, rising from $1263 a year ago.

With rents continuing to increase and incomes staying stagnant, it’s no surprise that more and more adults, particularly in large metros, are seeking roommates to maintain their lifestyles.

Related:
Doubled-Up for Dollars
RV Living in the City: Dodging the Rent Crisis
Rent Affordability Calculator

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How Much Do You Need to Make to Afford Rent?

By Natalie Wise

Can your job support your housing? Zillow has the numbers for average hourly rates needed to afford the median rent in cities across the country, so get ready for some sticker shock. These U.S. cities require much more than minimum wage to make the monthly rent payment.

If you’re into skiing, the best place for living cheaply is Sandpoint, Idaho. At $22 an hour needed to pay rent, you’ll have a bit more cash for the slopes than in other places. Jackson, Wyoming, South Lake Tahoe, California, and Bend, Oregon, can all be enjoyed in a cozy apartment with $30-an-hour jobs.

If a big city is more to your liking, there actually are a few inexpensive options. In Las Vegas and Philadelphia, some of the cheapest on the list, a $24-an-hour job will cover rent. Dallas requires $25 an hour, while Chicago is still relatively inexpensive at $34 an hour. One might think New York requires the highest hourly wage, but it’s in the middle at $44 an hour, while Boston requires $50 an hour and San Francisco a hefty $79 an hour.

Anything near San Francisco and Silicon Valley will cost a pretty penny. To live in Cupertino, you’ll need a job that pays $86 an hour, and for Menlo Park, $103 an hour. The most expensive city in California, though, was Atherton, where you’ll need a job that pays $193 an hour to pay rent.

But the highest price tag of them all is in Florida – Fisher Island, to be exact – where the average rental requires a job that pays a whopping $234 an hour.

Fortunately, the Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater area isn’t quite so expensive. If you calculate how much it takes to cover the rent, renters will need to earn at least $25 an hour. In February, the most recent month that information was available, the median rent was $1,305 a month.


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Want Waterfront Property? Be Prepared to Pay a Premium

By Natalie Wise …

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Home Values Expected to Rise in Tampa Bay Area

By Christina Sturgis

Home values in the Tampa metropolitan area are expected to rise 2.4 percent from the current median value of $163,000 over the coming year, according to Zillow, just beating the nationwide forecast of an increase of 2.3 percent from a median value of $184,600. That’s based on data through the end of February, the most recent month for which information was available.

Florida real estate was hit extremely hard by the Great Recession, which was followed by a crisis in foreclosures and negative equity, the term for mortgage balances that exceed the current value of the home. Zillow currently puts the Tampa metro negative equity rate at 14.7 percent, higher than the nationwide percentage of 13.1 percent.

Year over year since February 2015, there has been healthy appreciation in the Tampa metropolitan area.
-13 percent in St. Petersburg
-11.7 percent in Tampa
-9.4 percent in Clearwater
-9 percent in Spring Hill
-4.7 percent in New Port Richey

The homebuyer market also affects the rental market because people who lose their homes through foreclosure or are unable to qualify for a mortgage add to the demand for rental housing, forcing prices upward. …

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