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Market Rates Unlikely to Move Due to Europe, Inflation

Mortgage rates for 30-year fixed mortgages fell this week, with the current rate borrowers were quoted on Zillow at 3.79 percent, down 4 basis points from last week.

The 30-year fixed mortgage rate fell Friday, then hovered around 3.80 percent before dipping to the current rate on Tuesday.

“Last week, mortgage rates remained flat until weak U.S. economic data and stronger than expected oil supplies caused a drop at the week’s end,” said Erin Lantz, vice president of mortgages at Zillow. “Rates are unlikely to move much higher this week, as markets make sense of the political situation in Europe and look to U.S. inflation and output data, as well as the release of minutes from the Federal Open Market Committee’s October meeting and commentary from several committee voters.”

Additionally, the 15-year fixed mortgage rate was 2.95 percent, and for 5/1 ARMs, the rate was 3.00 percent.

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Celebrity Real Estate: Neil Young, Diane Keaton, Tim Allen

By Laura Vecsey

No More Rocking On the Big Island

Rocker Neil Young has sold his old-school Hawaii home for $20 million. The sale came quickly after the 69-year-old legend listed the oceanfront oasis this past summer for $24.5 million. The Big Island property featured a 5-bedroom main house, two guest cottages, two greenhouses and a pool house.

The sale is one of several big changes in Young’s life following the divorce of his long-time wife, Pegi.

Diane Keaton Ready for a New Project

Ever-popular and always artistically-engaged Diane Keaton has listed her Pacific Palisades house. She bought the property in 2012 for $5.6 million and now the actress, author, photographer, interior designer and architect buff is seeking $6.995 million for the 7,800-square-foot traditional-style abode.

With a string of historic and interesting property makeovers under her belt, including a Bel-Air Spanish Colonial that earned her center stage in “Architectural Digest,” this was a rather pedestrian purchase by the decorated Hollywood star. But with two teenage kids maybe she needed a more “normal” place to carry out the daily routine. But, now this serial flipper is moving on.

Mr. Fixit Not Needed for Tim Allen’s L.A. Getaway

Three years after paying $1.4 million for a rustic-chic mid-century modern off Mulholland Drive, actor Tim Allen has apparently decided he no longer needs the glorified California man cave. The 2,600-square-foot home has been listed for sale for $1.95 million.

The open floor plan allows for plenty of entertainment space, including a kitchen bar area in a sea of Vermont pine floors. The house flows nicely out to full-length decks with spectacular canyon views.

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Celebrity Real Estate: Bruce Springsteen, Jonah Hill, Roger Ebert

By Laura Vecsey …

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Celebrity Real Estate: John McEnroe, Yolanda Foster, David Foster

By Laura Vecsey

Love Match for McEnroe in Malibu

For at least the third time, tennis great John McEnroe and his wife, Patty Smyth have bought themselves a spread in Malibu. It may mean the couple will be looking to cast off one of the two other properties they own in the beachfront Los Angeles outpost.

Unlike the $3.35 million modern they purchased off Pacific Coast Highway in 2013, this modern masterpiece is directly on the ocean on one of the most desirable beaches in Malibu: Paradise Cove. The multi-level home was built in 1994 but has been completely redesigned inside by interior designer Michael Lee. …

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Celebrity Real Estate: Angelina Jolie, Britney Spears, Robin Williams

By Laura Vecsey

Childhood Home of Angelina Jolie Pitt for Sale

Angelina Jolie Pitt and her husband, Brad Pitt, have owned a fleet of houses from California to New Orleans to the wine country of France. But the childhood home of the Hollywood star and United Nations special envoy has just hit the market in Palisades, New York.

Dubbed “The Whitney House,’’ the mid-century modern is listed for $2.049 million after a major renovation that has given new life to the 4-bedroom, 4-bathroom home. It’s about 30 minutes north of NYC.

Jolie and her brother lived there during the 1980s with their mother, Marcheline Bertrand, after she split with their father Jon Voight. The home is right up Brad Pitt’s alley, given his penchant for modern architecture. But with six kids, there’s probably not enough room for the Jolie/Pitt clan.

Oops, She Did It Again.

Britney Spears may be playing at Planet Hollywood in Vegas for another two years, but the pop star wanted another southern California estate – so she bought one! Spears’ new abode contains 5 bedrooms, 7.5 bathrooms, cost $7.4 million and sits on 20 acres high in the hills just outside of Los Angeles.

When she’s off-duty from her extended Vegas show, Spears will have plenty of entertainment choices for herself and two sons. The property includes a golf course, a tennis court and a 1,000-square-foot pool house with a full kitchen, bath and 3,800-bottle wine cellar.

Robin Williams’ Estate Gets Another Price Cut

Before his death in 2013, Oscar-winner Robin Williams sometimes lamented the high cost of maintaining his fabulous Napa estate. Perhaps this issue has figured into the difficulty the actor’s heirs have had finding a buyer?

With Williams’ children and wife now battling over his estate, a decision was made to drop the price on the Napa property down to $22.9 million. It was originally listed for $29.9 million.

Spread over 640 acres, the property contains vineyards, olive trees, hiking and horse trails, ranch facilities, a huge infinity pool, home theater and climate-controlled wine rooms. The main house is a massive, 20,000-square-foot limestone edifice complete with 5 bedrooms and 10 bathrooms. A caretaker house on the property adds another 4 bedrooms.

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Celebrity Real Estate: Dave Grohl, Amy Irving, Betsey Johnson

By Laura Vecsey

Dave Grohl’s Cali Beach House Gets Price Drop

Proof that he’s eager to make a deal, Foo Fighter frontman Dave Grohl has shaved a couple of bucks off his Oxnard beach house. The current list price is now $2.995 million. The 3,000-square-foot home sits a few sandy steps from the ocean and is big enough (4 bedrooms, 4 bathrooms and tons of decking) to hang 10 with some fellow surfer dudes. Grohl may need a day to catch a few waves near his well-appointed surfer’s den.

Amy Irving Downsizing in Her Adopted Hometown

Amy Irving was born in California, but after her starring role in “Crossing Delancey,” the actress always seemed to have a bit of New Yorker deep within. Now the 62-year-old star of screen and stage has decided to part with her sprawling apartment at 50 Central Park West. …

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Mortgage Rates Fall to Low Levels

Mortgage rates for 30-year fixed mortgages fell this week, with the current rate borrowers were quoted on Zillow Mortgages at 3.73 percent, down 2 basis points from last week.

The 30-year fixed mortgage rate fell to 3.67 percent on Friday before rising to the current rate Tuesday.

“Mortgage rates fell last week to their lowest levels since early May after the Fed deferred its first rate hike yet again,” said Erin Lantz, vice president of mortgages at Zillow. “We expect rates to be mostly stable this week now that the uncertainty about the Fed’s decision has subsided.”

Additionally, the 15-year fixed mortgage rate was 2.89 percent, and for 5/1 ARMs, the rate was 2.71 percent.

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Celebrity Real Estate: Sela Ward, Kathleen Turner, Richard Gere

By Laura Vecsey

Sela Ward Trading Paradise

“CSI: NY” star Sela Ward is about to make the Big Apple switch. That means parting with the grand Bel-Air estate she and her husband have owned since 2003. The 8-acre property has been listed for $39.995 million, which means the veteran star of the small screen will definitely be able to handle NYC real estate prices – sizzling as they are.

The 14,000-square-foot gated estate features a main house with 5 bedrooms, plus a guest house with an additional 2 bedrooms. Their property also features a theater, library, a greenhouse and plenty of the great California outdoors, including a vineyard and other fruit trees.

Kathleen Turner Sells Trump Place Condo

“Body Heat” star-turned-NYC-resident and stage actress Kathleen Turner is allegedly moving to lower Manhattan. To pave the way, Turner has just sold her Lincoln Square condo for $3.8 million. It was located in one of the first towers Trump brought to the Manhattan real estate market.

Turner, who will star off-Broadway starting Sept. 26 in a new play she is also producing, bought the 200 Riverside Boulevard abode in 2003, when she was married to New York real estate kingpin Jay Weiss. …

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Celebrity Real Estate: Norah Jones, Julianne Moore, Melanie Griffith, Antonio Banderas

By Laura Vecsey

Singer Nabs Historic Carriage House …

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How an MLS Helps Drive Home Sales

When you decided to sell your home, your real estate agent gave you a comprehensive list of all the ways they plan to market your home so that it gets maximum exposure to potential buyers and sells quickly. One of the methods of reaching buyers is by posting your home on the “MLS,” but what is that, exactly, and why should you care about it?

A multiple listing service, or MLS, is a network for agents and brokers that grants them access to exchange property listing information and share compensation for a sale. That means once your home is listed for sale and posted to the MLS, other real estate agents can view the information and choose to work with your agent to find a buyer – and be compensated if the collaboration results in a sale.

There are more than 900 multiple listing services in the United States and agents can join more than one. Real estate agents pay a fee to join an MLS and only licensed agents and certain other industry professionals can search it; an MLS is not directly accessible to general consumers. …

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Celebrity Real Estate: Neil Young, Tracy Morgan, Marc Anthony

By Laura Vecsey


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Celebrity Real Estate: Serena Williams, Venus Wlliams, Alicia Keys

By Laura Vecsey …

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Celebrity Real Estate: Donald Trump, Rosie O'Donnell, Dennis Miller

By Laura Vecsey …

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Mortgage Rates Expected to Move Lower

Mortgage rates for 30-year fixed mortgages rose this week, with the current rate borrowers were quoted on Zillow Mortgages at 3.77 percent, up 2 basis points from the same time last week.

The 30-year fixed mortgage rate rose Wednesday, then returned to the current rate and stayed there for the rest of the week.

“Mortgage rates temporarily rose last week after the Atlanta Fed president said interest rates could increase in September, but ended the week essentially where they started,” said Erin Lantz, vice president of mortgages at Zillow. “Mortgage rates should move lower as investors seek safety after China devalued the yuan. Friday’s Consumer Sentiment data could also move rates toward the end of the week.”

Additionally, the 15-year fixed mortgage rate was 2.96 percent, and for 5/1 ARMs, the rate was 2.83 percent.

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Tampa Homes in Reach for Young Buyers

By Christina Sturgis

The forecast for young home buyers in the Sunshine State is mixed, according to Zillow, but Hillsborough County can help brighten the outlook.

Zillow analyzed the prices of homes listed for sale in five Florida metropolitan areas and compared them against the median incomes of millennials – those 23 to 34 years old – to determine what percentage of homes were within the youngest buyers’ grasp.

Nationwide, 70 percent of homes listed for sale are affordable for this set of potential homeowners. In Tampa, the percentage is 71 percent and in nearby Lakeland, the percentage is 78 percent – with the most optimistic outlook in the state.

Elsewhere in Florida, the picture is cloudier for young buyers with much lower percentages of homes in the affordable range:
• Miami, 44 percent
• Orlando, 57 percent
• Sarasota, 46 percent …

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