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Tag: Housing


What You Need to Earn to Rent a Decent One-Bedroom in America

Unsurprisingly, the “housing wage” is much higher than the minimum wage in much of the country.

Posted on Apr 26, 2014 READ MORE



See How the Irish Live

A looming social crisis in the Irish capital of Dublin has emerged out of a severe shortage of cheap rents, increased demand for housing and a dramatic slowdown in construction.

Posted on Jan 23, 2014 READ MORE



Shutterstock

Ending the Fire Zone Subsidy

As the Denver Post previously reported, between 1990 and 2000, more than a third of all homes built in America were built in the so-called Wildland-Urban Interface—aka the fire red zones.

Posted on Nov 22, 2013 READ MORE



Shutterstock

Spiraling Rents Squeeze the Nation’s Working Poor

Increasing rents and stagnating or decreasing household income have pushed more families into homelessness, even as overall homeless rates have declined. At the same time, the number of families paying more than half of their income for housing has increased 5.5 percent to 6.5 million.

Posted on Oct 23, 2013 READ MORE



Ivan McClellan Photography (CC BY 2.0)

The Landscape of Wall Street’s Creative Destruction

It’s May 2012 and we’re in Woodlawn, a largely African American neighborhood on the South Side of Chicago. The goal of the HIT Squad, short for Housing Identification and Target, is to map blighted, bank-owned homes with overdue property taxes and neighbors angry enough about the destruction of their neighborhood to consider supporting a plan to repossess on the repossessors.

Posted on Aug 2, 2013 READ MORE



Detroit’s Pensions Under Attack

The bankrupt city is looking to cut its already underfunded retirement benefits; given the current economic climate, perhaps it’s time for the affordable housing options that were used in the last century to make a comeback; meanwhile, Pope Francis’ new banker, hired to clean up the Vatican’s messy accounts, comes with sex scandals of his own. These discoveries and more after the jump.

Posted on Jul 22, 2013 READ MORE



Image via Shutterstock

The Big Economic Stall

Perhaps the most disturbing aspect of all this is that we’re in the fifth year of a supposed economic recovery from the second-worst economic downturn of the past century, and we’re still not nearly back on track. Instead, we’ve had the most anemic recovery in history.

Posted on Apr 7, 2013 READ MORE



Flickr/ 401(K) 2013

Are Single People Getting Financially Screwed?

According to Lisa Arnold and Christina Campbell, singles can pay as much as $1 million more over a lifetime than those who are married, simply because of their marital status.

Posted on Jan 15, 2013 READ MORE


Homeownership Support Shouldn’t Be a Mansion Subsidy

With Congress finally starting to have a serious conversation about our revenue crisis, there are obvious reasons to limit the amount of mortgage interest that Americans can deduct from their taxable income.

Posted on Dec 13, 2012 READ MORE



Flickr / quinn.anya (CC-BY-SA)

America’s Middle-Class Neighborhoods on the Decline

As America’s middle class continues to diminish, it follows that the middle-class neighborhoods they once called home would shrink accordingly. Well, they are, finds a new Stanford University study, which charted changes in Americans’ living quarters since 1970. The results are sobering, if unsurprising.

Posted on Nov 16, 2011 READ MORE



Flickr / Diana Parkhouse (CC-BY)

Mortgage Rates Reach Record Low

U.S. mortgage rates on 30-year fixed loans have fallen to a record low after the Federal Reserve last week announced its plan to reduce borrowing costs by replacing short-term debt with more long-term debt. (more)

Posted on Sep 29, 2011 READ MORE



Flickr / Benjamin Chun (CC-BY-SA)

Israel Refuses to Halt Settlement Construction

Israel decided to move ahead with settlement construction Tuesday, giving the go-ahead for the building of 1,100 housing units in east Jerusalem, even after Palestinians claimed the area as their future capital in their application for U.N. membership last week.

Posted on Sep 27, 2011 READ MORE



Collage from a photo by World Economic Forum / Remy Steinegger

Israel OKs Major Housing Development With More to Come

Israel’s Interior Ministry has approved a 1,600-unit housing complex in East Jerusalem. It’s the same complex that was announced last year, embarrassing a visiting Vice President Joe Biden, and it comes with the promise to build an additional 2,700 units of housing in the occupied Palestinian area of the city.

Posted on Aug 11, 2011 READ MORE



Americans Could Learn From Israel’s Tent City

Economic frustrations, particularly the high cost of rent, have breathed new life into the Israeli left. Residents of a tent city in Tel Aviv, constructed to protest financial woes, put Israel’s conservative prime minister on the defense, forcing him to announce a committee Sunday to look into reforms.

Posted on Aug 7, 2011 READ MORE



Flickr/Images_of_Money

Plummeting Prices Deepen Crisis in U.S. Housing Market

According to at least some sources, certain sectors of the American economy are showing signs of life, but the housing market sure isn’t one of them, especially considering the news expected to surface Tuesday that prices have now dipped below the previous lowest point recorded since this recession kicked in three years ago. The recession’s earlier bottom for housing prices occurred in 2009.

Posted on May 30, 2011 READ MORE



AP / Louis Lanzano

The Man Who Shattered Our Economy

Rejoice, the housing market is back. Sandy Weill just picked up a humdinger of a wine vineyard estate in Sonoma, Calif., for a record $31 million, so the foreclosure crisis must be over.

Posted on Nov 17, 2010 READ MORE


Warhol painting
AP / Sang Tan

U.S. Economy Quickens Its Pace

The U.S. economy had a bit of a pickup during this year’s third quarter, showing growth of 2 percent. Meanwhile, the housing market remains limp and high unemployment recalcitrantly hovers at 9.6 percent.

Posted on Oct 29, 2010 READ MORE



Flickr / futureatlas.com (CC-BY)

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac Run Up Huge Tab for Taxpayers

So, remember that whole bailout thing that began a couple of years ago? It’s not over yet, at least not when it comes to those delinquent housing giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. According to new government projections, the Fannie and Freddie bailout fiasco could ... (continued)

Posted on Oct 21, 2010 READ MORE



AP / Sebastian Scheiner

Netanyahu Urges Settler Restraint

With a 10-month moratorium on settlement construction in the West Bank about to expire, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is urging Israeli settlers to show restraint. President Barack Obama has prodded Israel to extend the moratorium, and Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas says Israel must choose between peace and the continuation of Jewish settlements.

Posted on Sep 26, 2010 READ MORE


Housing Sales

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Posted on Aug 25, 2010 READ MORE


construction
AP / Sebastian Scheiner

New Mideast Peace Talks Already on the Rocks

One step forward ... well, you know the rest. Although a new round of peace talks signaled a much-needed, if tentative, show of progress in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, those negotiations have already hit a big bump over Israel’s construction activities in East Jerusalem. 

Posted on May 10, 2010 READ MORE



AP / Oded Balilty

Zionism Gets a Turbo Boost

Some Israeli settlers are taking Zionism to a whole new level. Some 200 settlers, living illegally on occupied Palestinian land, marched on the Palestinian neighborhood of Silwan in East Jerusalem to assert their supposed right to live on occupied land as well as to affirm “Jewish sovereignty over the whole city.”

Posted on Apr 25, 2010 READ MORE



Flickr / James Callan

BofA Back in the Black

We can all now breathe a collective sigh of relief: Bank of America has returned to quarterly profit after losing almost $200 million in the last quarter of 2009. The news comes even as home foreclosure activity hit an all-time record in March.

Posted on Apr 17, 2010 READ MORE


Blair, Clinton et al.
AP / Alexander Zemlianichenko

Israel Faces Pressure From International Community on Settlements

The negative reactions are snowballing on multiple fronts against Israel’s highly controversial decision to build 1,600 new housing units in East Jerusalem, an announcement that put the kibosh on Vice President Joe Biden’s good-will visit last week. (continued)

Posted on Mar 19, 2010 READ MORE



AP / Rodrigo Abd

Haiti, One Month Later

Today marks the one-month anniversary of the earthquake in Haiti, which provides an appropriate moment to bring attention to the recovery effort—rebuilding the country’s infrastructure, caring for those still injured and helping the hundreds of thousands still in precarious situations.

Posted on Feb 12, 2010 READ MORE


Brad Pitt house
Still image from the Make It Right project's Web site.

Do the ‘Brad Pitt Houses’ Help New Orleans?

Does Brad Pitt’s housing development project in New Orleans’ Katrina-ravished Ninth Ward represent a much-needed boost to the neighborhood, no matter from whence it came? Or do his efforts amount to yet another example of a Hollywood do-gooder’s personal crusade ... (continued)

Posted on Nov 30, 2009 READ MORE



AP / Sebastian Scheiner

U.S. Condemns Israeli Settlement Expansion

In a strong rebuke of Israeli policy, the White House has expressed “regret” over an announcement by Israel that it will expand its illegal settlements in Palestinian areas. Hundreds of new housing units are expected to be approved for construction in the West Bank in a move seen as placating the rightists in power.

Posted on Sep 4, 2009 READ MORE


Freddie Mac
bloomberg.com

Freddie Mac’s Acting CFO Found Dead

The acting chief financial officer for housing lender Freddie Mac, David Kellermann, was found dead Wednesday morning in what appeared to be a suicide. If the death is ruled a suicide, Kellermann will be the seventh high-profile financial services executive to have taken his own life under stress from the current economic crisis.

Posted on Apr 22, 2009 READ MORE


Bank Owned
willows-journal.com

$75 Billion to Fight Foreclosures

While $700 billion was given to the banks and credit institutions that haphazardly pushed forward our current economic fiasco, millions of homeowners at risk of foreclosure may now be given only about one-tenth of that figure—$75 billion—in an effort to slow the deterioration of the housing market.

Posted on Feb 18, 2009 READ MORE


Downsized

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Posted on Feb 15, 2009 READ MORE


The Downside of Bipartisanship

Remember this, President Obama: There are few Washington traditions as annoying as the cultish worship of bipartisanship, for it ignores the simple fact that sometimes one party gets things disastrously wrong.

Posted on Jan 22, 2009 READ MORE



Flickr / respres

Obama Says He’ll Spend Some Bailout Money on Homeowners

With half of the $700 billion in TARP funds already spent and not a whole lot to show for it, Barack Obama has pledged to spend the second parcel differently, with at least some of the money going to desperate homeowners. President Bush has agreed to request the funds on Obama’s behalf in order to expedite the process.

Posted on Jan 12, 2009 READ MORE


Deflation
telegraph.co.uk

Deflation Dangers Daunt the Economy

Analysts believe the economy is already in “horrific shape”—with news this month of record-breaking drops in the cost of living and new home construction—and is inching closer to a dangerous deflationary period, which could worsen the current economic crisis by making debts even harder to repay.

Posted on Nov 19, 2008 READ MORE


Ted Stevens
engadget.com

Stevens Defends Himself, Blames Others

Alaska’s Sen. Ted Stevens (the Internet as a “series of tubes” guy) testified in his own defense at his corruption trial Friday, blaming the fact that he received $250,000 in free house renovations and gifts first on his wife, then family friends, and ultimately on the many responsibilities of a U.S. senator.

Posted on Oct 17, 2008 READ MORE


A Welcome Pause Before the Bailing Starts

We all owe a debt of thanks to the skeptics who refused to be steamrollered by the Bush administration’s $700-billion financial bailout plan until we at least had some understanding of what we were doing and why.

Posted on Oct 2, 2008 READ MORE


skid row
flickr.com/ikkoskinen

Tent Cities Springing Up

One sign of the nation’s shaky economy can be seen in the growing numbers of newly homeless people forming “tent cities” around the U.S. The rise of these encampments is being attributed partly to the foreclosure crisis in the housing market, and the newest economic developments aren’t likely to ease the situation.

Posted on Sep 18, 2008 READ MORE


Markets Respond to Fannie, Freddie Takeover

Investors have been throwing money at stock markets the world over following the news that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have been placed under federal conservatorship. Some analysts are confident that the move will stabilize the mortgage giants and, in turn, a tanking housing market. With hundreds of billions of taxpayer dollars on the line, let’s hope they’re right.

Posted on Sep 8, 2008 READ MORE


Sold

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Posted on Aug 6, 2008 READ MORE


Detroit Homeless Shelter
Detroit News / Ankur Dholakia

Chronically Homeless Numbers Down 30%, U.S. Claims

In the face of a U.S. housing crisis and a troubled economy, Bush administration officials claim that the past two years have seen a 30 percent drop in the levels of chronically homeless people, crediting the decrease to a strategy of finding permanent shelter for the long-ignored disabled and addicted.

Posted on Jul 30, 2008 READ MORE



commons.wikimedia.org

Super Mega Housing Bill on Bush’s Desk

There’s a lot the president doesn’t like about the new housing bill, just passed by the House, but he’ll hold his nose and sign it. The package includes huge guarantees for Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae—the national debt ceiling had to be lifted by about $800 billion, just in case—but also rescue for hundreds of thousands of homeowners at risk of foreclosure.

Posted on Jul 23, 2008 READ MORE


Federal Reserve building
Flickr / wwarby

Fed Forecasts Economic Gloom

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke expects America’s economic struggles to continue well into next year and has asked Congress to expand his regulatory powers. Lawmakers are unlikely to fulfill his request any time soon. Bernanke also suggested that the Fed could continue to bail out investment banks.

Posted on Jul 9, 2008 READ MORE


The Plague of Potomac Fever

Congress is ravaged by a disease inside the Washington Beltway inhibiting emotions like compassion and integrity. As the housing crisis intensifies, this malady is getting worse.

Posted on May 2, 2008 READ MORE


Fed Forecasts Slow Growth in 2008

Officials at the Federal Reserve are running out of creative ways to stave off a recession and expect the U.S. economy to slow to a crawl in 2008, with a growth rate of only 1.3 to 2 percent over the year.

Posted on Feb 20, 2008 READ MORE


Fed Steps Into Mortgage Mess

The term “subprime mortgage” has certainly been in heavy rotation in recent months, and economic panic has spread as a result of lenders playing fast and loose with their home-lending criteria, causing chaos in the mortgage market.  Enter the Federal Reserve to try to undo some of the damage and prevent a recurrence.

Posted on Dec 18, 2007 READ MORE


central park
zdnet.com

The New British Invasion

With the dollar getting weaker all the time, the ailing housing market is getting a little relief from an unexpected source: foreigners. Brits in particular have been tempted by bargain homes in glamorous locales such as Manhattan, where one-third of all new condominiums are selling to foreign buyers.

Posted on Nov 18, 2007 READ MORE


Thanksgiving Blues

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Posted on Nov 16, 2007 READ MORE


stock prices
AP photo / Katsumi Kasahara

Paul Krugman on the ‘Conscience of a Liberal’

The New York Times columnist brings his liberal conscience and economic expertise to bear on the housing crisis and sheds light on the dirty secret behind many political victories by conservatives: “The consistent source of [Republican] success has been race.”

Posted on Nov 16, 2007 READ MORE


stock prices
AP photo / Katsumi Kasahara

Paul Krugman on the ‘Conscience of a Liberal’

New York Times columnist Paul Krugman brings his liberal conscience and economic expertise to bear on the housing crisis and sheds light on the dirty secret behind many political victories by conservatives: “The consistent source of [Republican] success has been race.”

Posted on Nov 6, 2007 READ MORE


Home Prices Plummet

If you’re caught up financially in the housing bubble (who isn’t these days?), you might want to skip this item. Home prices have fallen by 3.2 percent—the sharpest drop in 20 years, while the median price for homes has gone down for the 12th consecutive month—another record. That’s not good news for a market eager to return to the good ol’ days of easy loans and overpriced homes.

Posted on Aug 28, 2007 READ MORE


Domino Theory

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Posted on Aug 14, 2007 READ MORE


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