The new normal: $1M price tags in Hilton Head

Working from home in Hilton Head may cost you $1 million. Two years into the pandemic, listings at that threshold are no longer rare, and nor are homes that ask for almost $8 million, the Wall Street Journal reported. Median prices jumped to $650,000 through June from $360,000 in January 2020. The South Carolina island, a hub of private and semi-private golf communities, has long drawn buyers interested in warmer weather and cheaper taxes. Now

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Hiring by hotels, bars and restaurants behind big July jobs gain

Robust hiring at hotels, restaurants and bars, as well as in construction and health care, powered an unexpectedly strong jobs increase in July, the government announced Friday. Those industries accounted for 43 percent of the 528,000 gain. The unemployment rate fell to 3.5 percent, according to government data released Friday, despite Federal Reserve actions to cool the economy with higher interest rates. “This is not a picture of an economy in recession,” said chief economist

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Contract signings for homes plunge, yet inventory stays low

Across the New York region, contracts to buy homes have tapered off, but persistently depleted inventory has yet to rise. Take Long Island, where new signed contracts for single-family homes were down 28 percent in June from a year ago, according to a report by Miller Samuel for Douglas Elliman. New listings were down 22 percent. In the Hamptons, buyers signed 41 percent fewer contracts than in July 2021, while listings fell 15 percent. And

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Ooh la la! American home buyers look to France

If you’re an American looking to buy a home, you might consider polishing up your rusty high school French. Armed with a stronger dollar and fatter post-pandemic savings accounts, more Americans are looking to France as a possible locale for affordable homes, Bloomberg reported. The euro is at its weakest against the dollar in 20 years. Property searches for homes in France rose 37 percent in the first five months of this year over 2021,

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Idaho capital’s housing boom slams into reverse

The nation’s most overvalued housing market is coming down from a pandemic peak as mortgage rates rise, sending some newcomers back from where they came. Idaho’s capital region, one of the fastest-accelerating markets in the past two years, is reversing course, the Wall Street Journal reported. After single-family home prices in the Boise area jumped 79 percent in two years, they’re set to drop by as much as 10 percent. Remote workers flocked to Boise

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Watch: behind the wild and crazy housing market

It’s been a pretty crazy time for homebuyers and renters. Rents have been rising consistently since 2020. Vacancies are low, with more than a dozen would-be tenants per empty unit, so there’s no real end in sight. And 2021 saw a number of records at the ultra-high end of the sales market, from Manhattan to Palm Beach to Malibu. But it’s not all big sales and bidding wars anymore — this is where things start

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Priced-out buyers trigger drop in pending home sales

Homebuyers are still slowing their pandemic-fueled, contract-signing binge in response to the triple whammy of rising mortgage rates, high housing prices and low inventory. The number of pending home sales dipped by 8.6 percent in June after a slight uptick in May, resuming the previous six months’ trend of declines, a report from the National Association of Realtors showed Wednesday. June’s contract signings dropped a hefty 20 percent from last year. Meanwhile, housing was 80

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China pushes back as homebuyers protest mortgage issues

Chinese authorities are censoring social media posts in response to growing protests from homebuyers who are threatening to stop repaying home loans on unfinished projects. Frustrated buyers gathered in Wuhan last week outside the office of a bank regulator, saying they wouldn’t make payments for more than 300 unfinished properties across the country, the Wall Street Journal reported. The projects include some from developers such as China Evergrande, whose chairman was just forced out, and

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Bidding wars drop to lowest level since pandemic

Prospective homebuyers gearing up to beat out the competition can start to breathe easier. The level of competition on home offers written by Redfin agents dropped below 50 percent for the first time in more than two years, according to a report. The bidding war rate stood at 49.9 percent in June, the lowest Redfin has recorded since a 46.3 percent rate in May 2020. The share of offers to receive at least one rival

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Haruvi family sells off half its NYC rental empire for $139M

After years of acrimony and legal wrangling, the Haruvi family has sold off a major piece of its Manhattan apartment empire. Landlord Peter Hungerford’s PH Realty Capital paid $139 million in May for about half of the family’s portfolio, records show. The dozen properties, which combine for more than 200 units, are concentrated mostly on the Upper West Side, plus two buildings on First Avenue in Midtown East. PH Capital secured a $160 million loan

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