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peter's bookmarks on real estate and new york city in the media
Tuesday, January 26, 2010 | - City Room Blog - NYTimes.com

Throwing In the Towel at Stuyvesant Town

A group led by Tishman Speyer Properties has decided to give up the sprawling Peter Cooper Village and Stuyvesant Town apartment complex in Manhattan to its creditors in the collapse of one of the most high-profile deals of the real estate boom. The decision comes after the venture between Tishman and BlackRock Inc. defaulted on the $4.4 billion debt used to help finance the deal.

Saturday, January 2, 2010 | - NYTimes.com

Crosby Street - A Quiet Pocket of SoHo

One of my favorite blocks in Soho. Against some odds, Crosby Street has managed its revitalization without losing its character.

Saturday, January 2, 2010 | - NYTimes.com

Mortgage Modifications Are Seen as Adding to Housing Woes

The Obama administration’s $75 billion program to protect homeowners from foreclosure has been widely pronounced a disappointment, and some economists and real estate experts now contend it has done more harm than good.

Saturday, December 19, 2009 | - NYTimes.com

Agent or No Agent?

The NY Times recycles this old story line of FSBO vs. agent. Are real estate brokers — like travel agents and other middlemen coping with the increasingly digital culture — in danger of becoming expensive anachronisms? Haven't I read this one before guys?

Tuesday, December 15, 2009 | - Wall Street Journal

What’s So Great About 30-Year Fixed-Rate Mortgages?

Questioning the sanctity of the 30-year fixed home loan is tantamount to proposing that the White House should be repainted pink. For Realtors, mortgage lenders and home builders, the fixed rate is nearly as sacred as the tax deduction on mortgage interest. Yet there are good reasons to wonder whether the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage deserves to be enshrined and protected in public policy.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009 | - NYTimes.com

Some Tenants of Rent-Stabilized Apartments Decide Now Is the Time to Buy

This doesn't happen unless there is real value in marketplace. In a city where nearly 70 percent of the population rents, the decision to buy an apartment in New York is not taken lightly. But now that housing prices have dropped, even people who are paying well under market rates for their rentals, are venturing into the housing market.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009 | - NYTimes.com

Dow Ends Above 10,000, First Time in a Year

The Dow Jones industrial average, one of the most watched barometers of the financial world, closed above 10,000 points on Wednesday 10/14, a milestone of the stock market’s recovery from the depths of the financial crisis.

Monday, September 28, 2009 | - Crain's New York Business

Going green: Let a thousand supers bloom

Under the program, dubbed “One Year, One Thousand Green Supers,” building workers will take a 40-hour class that will teach them a variety of low or no-cost strategies to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the city's buildings, which officials say account for nearly 80% of all city greenhouse gas emissions.

Monday, September 28, 2009 | - NYTimes.com

At Long Last, a Leveling Out?

Many brokers, thrilled to be busy showing apartments this fall after a year of tumbling prices and sluggish sales, are convinced the Manhattan residential market is on the rebound. But their third-quarter market reports, due out this week, will very likely provide only the most tepid evidence of a recovery. The market may instead be approaching a plateau.

Monday, September 28, 2009 | - CNN Money

Homes: Sell at a loss, buy at a discount

Jennifer Galdes wants to buy a home in a better neighborhood, but is now the right time?

Monday, September 28, 2009 | - NYTimes.com

New York Appraisals Get Shortchanged

Many appraisals are now being performed by out-of-towners. As a result, local brokers and appraisers say, figures are coming in way too low. Low appraisals may reflect reality; But agents, mortgage brokers and even some appraisers say they suspect that some appraisals are mistakenly low.

Monday, September 28, 2009 | - NYTimes.com

Mortgages - New Lending Rules Coming Soon

On October 1, new rules adopted by the Federal Reserve will go into effect, requiring greater diligence on the part of mortgage lenders and brokers who make so-called high cost loans for borrowers with weak credit. Some consumer advocates applaud the new rules but say they come too late to help many borrowers. Mortgage executives, meanwhile, have expressed concern that the changes could further dry up the mortgage market.

Sunday, August 30, 2009 | - NYTimes.com

Some Buildings Not Living Up to Green Label

Builders covet LEED certification — it stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design — as a way to gain tax credits, attract tenants, charge premium rents and project an image of environmental responsibility. But the gap between design and construction, which LEED certifies, and how some buildings actually perform, led the program last week to announce that it would for the first time begin collecting information about energy use from all the buildings it certifies.

Friday, July 31, 2009 | - NYTimes.com

Economy Shrank 1% in 2nd Quarter, Less Than Expected

Signs of hope on the horizon. The American economy shrank at an annual rate of 1 percent from April through June, the government reported on Friday, stoking hopes that the worst recession since the Great Depression was nearly over.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009 | - Bloomberg.com

Home Prices Rise, Consumer Confidence Declines

A gauge of U.S. house prices posted its first monthly gain in three years, providing some solace to consumers shaken by rising joblessness. The S&P/Case-Shiller home-price index rose 0.5 percent in May from the prior month, the first gain since July 2006 and biggest since May of that year.

Monday, July 27, 2009 | - NYTimes.com

Sharp Rise in New-Home Sales as Prices Fall

The government said Monday that new-home sales in the United States rose by the largest amount in nearly eight years last month, in another sign the housing market was bouncing back from the worst downturn in decades. Sales of new homes posted their largest monthly gain in nearly eight years in June, a sign the market is bottoming as buyers respond to lower prices.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009 | - Forbes.com

The Jobless Recovery

With some signs of recovery in the global economy, there is growing debate on what form this might take. Both recent experience and economic theory would suggest that a return to growth, at least in the short term, might not be accompanied by an increase in employment.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009 | - Bloomberg.com

Mortgage Applications rise by 11 Percent

Mortgage applications in the U.S. rose last week as refinancing jumped by the most since March and purchases climbed to the highest level in three months.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009 | - NYTimes.com

Harlem’s Real Estate Boom Becomes a Bust

Of all the New York City neighborhoods swept up in the real estate boom of the last decade, few became as hot as Harlem. It grew increasingly gentrified and integrated. Its economy developed a lively pulse, and its town homes — stately, historic, but often neglected — fetched prices unheard-of for the area. But that sense of electricity and evolution, which thrilled some residents and troubled others, has been unplugged. A neighborhood transformed by soaring home prices is now caught in a breathtaking fall, but residents believe the improvements to the area will prove durable.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009 | - CNN Money

Obama mortgage plan needs work

Many borrowers are not getting help under president's modification or refinancing plan. Officials don't expect problems to be fixed until the fall.

Sunday, June 28, 2009 | - NYTimes.com

Pillow Fights at the Four Seasons

The owners of Four Seasons hotels want to cut back in bad times, but the company is resisting, to protect the brand. This might surprise even its longtime guests, but Four Seasons —doesn’t own hotels. It operates them on behalf of real estate owners and developers. Four Seasons participates in the design of the property and runs it, with nearly total control over every aspect of the operation, from the number of bell staff to the thread count of the sheets.

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