Category Archives: Luxury Resort Portfolio

Boca Raton and Delray Beach Luxury Real Estate Listings and Home Sales

If you are interested in previewing any of the prominent Boca Raton or Delray Beach luxury real estate listing comprising our unprecedented Palm Beach County Luxury Resort Portfolio, receive additional information for any listed property in South Florida or gain maximum Global Marketing Exposure for your residence… Luxury Resort Portfolio would welcome the opportunity to be of service to you.

It is with great pride that we
"Invite You To Experience Our Expertise"

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The Oaks | Opulent Santa Barbara Tradition

September 4, 2009

The Oaks at Boca Raton
17614 Grand Este Way | Boca Raton, Florida

Offered at $2,299,000 US
MLS Number R3016713

Residence: Designer decorated and furnished, this exquisite Donatella villa at The Oaks at Boca Raton is a crowning achievement by acclaimed Charlse-Watt, blending breathtaking appointments and lavish luxuries. Smart-house technologies with AMX touch-pads control all systems including security, climate, lighting, surround-sound audio, and televisions. Mosaic-inlaid travertine marble floors, elaborate moldings, and hurricane-impact glass are also featured. Five bedrooms, 6 full and 2 half baths, plus a 4-car garage are included in 7,860± total square feet at The Oaks at Boca Raton.

Luxury Resort Portfolio
“The Definitive Source For Luxury Real Estate In South Florida”

Main | 800.644.5616
Fax | 800.644.0059

Philip Lyle Smith | 561.445.2282
Carla Ferreira-Smith | 561.445.2299

or email us at TheSmiths@LuxuryResortPortfolio.com

A Transaction Brokerage Team Representing Both Buyers And Sellers

____________________________________________

The information herein is believed to be accurate but not guaranteed and may be subject to errors, omissions and changes without notice. This is not to be construed as a solicitation of property presently listed for sale. All information is derived from the Palm Beach County Property Appraisers website and the MLS
The information herein is believed to be accurate but not guaranteed and may be subject to errors, omissions and changes without notice. This is not to be construed as a solicitation of property presently listed for sale.

All information is derived from the Palm Beach County Property Appraisers website and the MLS.

Long Lake Estates | Lakefront Moorish Masterpiece

August 14, 2009
Long Lake Estates
8465 Twin Lake Drive | Boca Raton, FL

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Offered at $5,295,0000 US
MLS# R3017003

Residence: Superbly scaled and elegantly detailed, this stately Long Lake Estates lakefront villa offers 7 Bedrooms, 8 full and 3 half Baths, and a 6-bay Garage. Old World appointments include Turkish marble floors, coffered ceilings, stone columned archways, and elaborate moldings. Large windows with hurricane-impact glass and a back-up power generator are featured throughout. Grandly scaled for indoor/outdoor entertaining, this sprawling Long Lake Estates 14,000+/- square-foot home lends an inviting atmosphere with a subtle palette and charming Moorish-inspired details.

The Smiths- Luxury Resort Portfolio
A Transaction Brokerage Team Representing Both Buyers And Sellers

561.445.2282
561.445.2299

or email us at TheSmiths@LuxuryResortPortfolio.com

_________________________________________

The information herein is believed to be accurate but not guaranteed and may be subject to errors, omissions and changes without notice. This is not to be construed as a solicitation of property presently listed for sale. All information is derived from the Palm Beach County Property Appraisers website and the MLS

The information herein is believed to be accurate but not guaranteed and may be subject to errors, omissions and changes without notice. This is not to be construed as a solicitation of property presently listed for sale.

All information is derived from the Palm Beach County Property Appraisers website and the MLS.

Listing and Selling The Exlusive Communities of Palm Beach County

May 8, 2009
The Smiths – Luxury Resort Portfolio
“The Definitive Source for Luxury Real Estate in South Florida”

We are pleased to announce
The Smiths – Luxury Resort Portfolio

Listing and Selling The Exclusive Communities of Palm Beach County

Just Listed
Mizner Country Club – Andalucia

Offered at $1,595,000
VIEW VIDEO TOUR
(Click On Image to View Details)


New To Market
Long Lake Estates
Offered at $5,295,000
(Click On Image to View Details)



Newly Priced

The Oaks at Boca Raton
Offered at $2,599,000
(Click On Image to View Details)



Newly Priced
Mizner Country Club – Capri

Offered at $2,449,000
(Click On Image to View Details)

Newly Priced
The Oaks at Boca Raton
Offered at $1,199,000
(Click On Image to View Details)

The Smiths – Luxury Resort Portfolio
Recent Sales


“Just Sold” by The Smiths – Luxury Resort Portfolio
Mizner Country Club – Andalucia
List Price of $1,695,000
(Click On Image to View Details)

“Just Sold” by The Smiths – Luxury Resort Portfolio
The Oaks at Boca Raton
List Price of $2,450,000
(Click On Image to View Details)

_____________________________________

Preview All of Our Listed Estates
(Click Below)

The Smiths- Luxury Resort Portfolio
A Transaction Brokerage Team
Representing Both Buyers And Sellers
561.445.2282
561.445.2299

TheSmiths@luxuryresortportfolio.com

The information herein is believed to be accurate but not guaranteed and may be subject to errors, omissions and changes without notice. This is not to be construed as a solicitation of property presently listed for sale. All information is derived from the Palm Beach County Property Appraisers website and the MLS.
The information herein is believed to be accurate but not guaranteed and may be subject to errors, omissions and changes without notice. This is not to be construed as a solicitation of property presently listed for sale.

All information is derived from the Palm Beach County Property Appraisers website and the MLS.

Home Equity Stripped Away in 2008; Nearly $2 Trillion in Home Values Lost This Year

December 15, 2008

Source: Zillow.com
Posted: December 15, 2009

SEATTLE, Dec. 15 /PRNewswire/ — U.S. homes are set to lose well over $2 trillion in value during 2008, according to analysis of recent Zillow Real Estate Market Reports (1). Home values declined 8.4 percent year-over-year during the first three quarters of this year, compared to the same period in 2007.

“Underwater” was the real estate buzzword of the year. U.S. home values (2) lost $1.9 trillion from the first of the year through the end of the third quarter, and were likely to fall further in the fourth quarter, leaving approximately 11.7 million American households owing more on their mortgage than their homes are worth. One in seven of all homeowners (14.3 percent) were underwater by the end of the third quarter.

“This year marked the acceleration of the market correction, and is likely to end with the eighth consecutive quarter of declines in home values,” said Dr. Stan Humphries, Zillow’s vice president of data and analytics. “In general, homeowners in most areas we cover are struggling with foreclosures pouring into the market, large amounts of negative equity and dropping home values. On the positive side, in the third quarter, some markets – particularly those hit hardest in the downturn – showed smaller year-over-year declines than in the prior quarter. Our optimism here, though, must be tempered by the knowledge that the larger economic problems that emerged in the fourth quarter will likely further challenge the real estate market.”

Thirty of the 163 metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) covered in the Zillow Real Estate Market Reports showed gains in the Zillow Home Value Index (3), or median value of all homes in the area, over the first three quarters of the year, with the Jacksonville, N.C. region seeing year-over-year appreciation of 4.9 percent. The change in value was calculated by averaging the year-over-year change in each of the first three quarters of the year.

Also performing well were the Winston-Salem, N.C. and Anderson, S.C. MSAs, with year-over-year increases of 4.1 percent and 3.5 percent, respectively, over the first three quarters of the year.

The Stockton, Calif. region fared the worst in the first three quarters of 2008, with home values sliding 32.3 percent year-over-year. The Merced, Calif. area followed with home values declining 31.2 percent year-over-year in the first three quarters of 2008.

View Link for additional information: Zillow.com

______________________________________________________________

For further information or if you wish to see your property featured here.
Please Contact:The Smiths – Luxury Resort Portfolio at
(561) 445-2282

Luxury Resort Portfolio
Estate Specialists Representing Both Buyers And Sellers


The information herein is believed to be accurate but not guaranteed and may be subject to errors, omissions and changes without notice. This is not to be construed as a solicitation of property presently listed for sale. All information is derived from the Palm Beach County Property Appraisers website and the MLS.

The information herein is believed to be accurate but not guaranteed and may be subject to errors, omissions and changes without notice. This is not to be construed as a solicitation of property presently listed for sale.

All information is derived from the Palm Beach County Property Appraisers website and the MLS.

Your Second Home – Buying & Selling

December 8, 2008
Timing A Market

By: STEVE BAILEY
Source: New York Times Online

Published: December 4, 2008

Are you thinking that this might be the time to buy a second home, that weekend getaway that you’ve always wanted? Or, are you struggling financially and feeling pressure to sell your own weekend home? How can a buyer know that he or she is getting the best deal, that the property you buy now won’t be worth less in a few months? And, how can a seller know that selling now is a good idea? What if the market starts to recover in a few months?

Neither buyer nor seller (nor any real estate agent) can see the future, but anyone can see that, right now, many properties aren’t selling, at least not at the prices sellers want. There are, however, strategies for making the most of this market.

Diane Saatchi, a senior vice president with the Corcoran Group in the Hamptons, said her real estate market has certainly felt the impact of recent sharp drops in the stock market. “When this all began in mid-September, some buyers backed out of deals not yet signed up,” she wrote in an e-mail message. “Some sellers offered better terms to keep the deals on course. In some cases, this worked, in others not. Many would-be buyers moved to the sidelines and/or lowered their price points in looking.

“Some buyers have become more price-oriented. For example, there are buyers more concerned about size of discount than they are about location and amenities.”

Though the market for vacation homes is not immune from economic reality, it does not shadow the total real estate market. “While the overall housing market peaked in 2005, the market for vacation homes didn’t peak until 2006,” said Walter Molony, a spokesman for the National Association of Realtors in Washington. That doesn’t mean, though, that a recovery in the second-home market will lag behind the larger market. “A large number of our transactions are not subject to financing,” Ms. Saatchi said of second-home sales in the Hamptons, so a rebound could occur if consumer confidence rises ahead of a loosening of credit.

If you have a vacation home that you’re thinking of selling, this is almost certainly not the best time. “It depends on the seller’s needs,” Neil B. Garfinkel, a Manhattan real estate lawyer, said. “For example, if he needs to get out from under a mortgage, he may have to sell.”

The seller should be realistic about the market and realize that he is not going to get what he paid if he has owned the property only a short time. People who bought 5 or 10 years ago are more likely to see a profit, but nothing like what they would have realized a couple of years ago. A motivated seller can increase the odds in his favor by sprucing up the house to make it stand out among the many foreclosed houses, which are typically run-down, on the market.

“Those who want to or have to sell now are pricing ‘tight,’ ” Ms. Saatchi said, meaning about as low as the seller can go. “Listing brokers are advising sellers to discount from recent closed sales to set asking prices. With a large inventory, sellers are wise to price competitively to drive the most potential buyers to their properties. The adage ‘you can always come down’ does not work in this market as, if no one comes to look, there won’t even be those low offers.”

Some real estate agents have found that pricing below market can result in a higher selling price because the low asking price attracts more buyers.

Many would-be sellers are waiting for prices to rise a bit; in the meantime, they’re renting their properties, though the National Association of Realtors says that only about 15 percent of second-home owners traditionally rent out their houses.

If you’re looking for a vacation home, you’ll most likely find bargains, though some of the more desirable properties may have been taken off the market. You might pay particular attention to properties that have been on the market for more than three months, a sign that the seller may be willing to do what it takes to make a deal. When you do find what you want at a price you like, financing might be a problem.

“Days of financing 90 percent are long gone,” Mr. Garfinkel said. “You’ll need to put down at least 20 percent plus closing costs.”

_____________________________________________________________
For further information or if you wish to see your property featured here.
Please Contact:The Smiths – Luxury Resort Portfolio at
(561) 445-2282

Luxury Resort Portfolio
Estate Specialists Representing Both Buyers And Sellers


The information herein is believed to be accurate but not guaranteed and may be subject to errors, omissions and changes without notice. This is not to be construed as a solicitation of property presently listed for sale. All information is derived from the Palm Beach County Property Appraisers website and the MLS.

The information herein is believed to be accurate but not guaranteed and may be subject to errors, omissions and changes without notice. This is not to be construed as a solicitation of property presently listed for sale.

All information is derived from the Palm Beach County Property Appraisers website and the MLS.

U.S. Mortgage Plan Falls Short

November 13, 2008

Plan to modify Fannie, Freddie loans will help some,
but more needs to be done, experts said.

By Tami Luhby
Source: CNNMoney.com
Date: November 11, 2008

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) — The federal government’s plan to streamline modifications of troubled loans held by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac won’t help the majority of people threatened with foreclosure, experts said.

Under a plan unveiled Tuesday, homeowners whose loans are owned or backed by the mortgage finance companies and who are at least 90 days behind can enter a streamlined modification program. Their payments would be adjusted through lower interest rates or longer repayment terms that would total no more than 38% of their monthly household income. In some cases, payment on part of the loans’ principal may be deferred, though not reduced.

The interest rate could be lowered to as little as 3% for five years. After that, it would increase by 1 percentage point a year until it hits either the market rate or the original interest rate, whichever is lower, officials said.

Unlike previous federal efforts, participation by servicers is not voluntary. They will now work with eligible borrowers to reach more affordable mortgage payments, using the guidelines laid out Tuesday.

Also, officials hope the new program, which could help more than 400,000 homeowners, will convince servicers who handle loans held by private investors to follow suit.

Program doesn’t cover most subprime loans

While experts and some government officials called the plan a positive step forward, they said much more needs to be done to address the mortgage crisis. The program does not address the heart of the problem — troubled loans held by private investors.

Though Fannie (FNM, Fortune 500) and Freddie (FRE, Fortune 500) own or guarantee 58% of all mortgages on single-family homes, these loans represent only 20% of serious delinquencies. The majority of the problem mortgages were bundled into securities, which were sold in pieces to investors.

“This is a step in the right direction but falls short of what is needed to achieve widescale modifications of distressed mortgages, particularly those held in private securitization trusts,” said Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. chairman Sheila Bair, who has proposed an alternate plan addressing securitized loans. “As we lend and invest hundreds of billions of dollars to help institutions suffering leveraged losses from defaulting mortgages, we must also devote some of that money to fixing the front-end problem: too many unaffordable home loans.”

Problems in the mortgage market remain concentrated in the subprime sector, which are mainly held by investors who have resisted modifying the loan terms.

“Most foreclosures are happening on subprime loans that Fannie and Freddie don’t control,” said Eric Stein, senior vice president at the Center for Responsible Lending, which has long pressed the federal government to help delinquent borrowers. “More is still needed to address foreclosures on these mortgages. To date, voluntary modifications haven’t been sufficient. That’s why we still have a foreclosure crisis.”

To broaden existing foreclosure fixes, Bair supports using up to $50 billion of the $700 billion financial sector rescue plan to guarantee modified loans. This would give servicers an incentive to adjust the loan terms and could help up to 3 million homeowners, though the number is not firm.

Meanwhile, the FDIC has already adopted a streamlined process to modify troubled loans owned or serviced by the failed IndyMac Bank, which the agency took over in mid-July. Some 3,500 borrowers have accepted the workouts, which also aim to keep payments at no more than 38% of gross income.

Several major servicers — including Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase and Citigroup — have recently announced expansions of their foreclosure prevention efforts, which could aid nearly a million more borrowers.

The programs will also seek to make payments more affordable by cutting interest rates or stretching out loan terms, but some homeowners can also get their mortgage principal reduced depending on their servicer and financial situation.

Deferring payment on principal

Reducing principal is key to keeping some borrowers — especially those whose house values have fallen below their mortgage balances — in their homes, experts said. It makes both the loan more affordable and gives homeowners more incentive not to walk away.

In announcing the plan, officials made a point of saying that borrowers must repay their current mortgage in full, just with more affordable monthly payments.

“Loan modifications are not a gift … the principal cut on the front end will be paid at the end of the loan, either in extended payments or a balloon payment,” said Brian Montgomery, commissioner of the Federal Housing Administration. “This is not loan forgiveness.”

However, to make payments affordable, servicers may choose to defer part of the payment — with no interest — until the end of the loan, officials said. For borrowers whose homes are worth less than their mortgages, servicers might defer the difference.

Here’s how it would work: Let’s say a homeowner has a $200,000 mortgage on a house now worth $150,000. The servicer may defer payment on $50,000 of principal. If the home recovers its value and the borrower sells it, he or she would have to pay back the deferred amount at that time. If it doesn’t recover, the borrower would have to work out a deal with the servicer, likely a short sale, in which the bank forgives the difference between the sale price and the mortgage balance.

If the borrower stays in the home, he or she would have to pay the deferred amount within 30 days of the last payment, likely 30 or 40 years from now. Homeowners could take out a new mortgage to cover that balloon payment.

Setting industry standards

Officials hope that Fannie and Freddie’s influence in the mortgage market will prompt servicers working with private investors to use this streamlined procedure in their own modifications. Often, investors defer to the mortgage finance agencies to set the methodology.

“I ask the private label mortgage-backed securities servicers and investors to rapidly adopt this program as the industry standard,” said James Lockhart, head of the Federal Housing Finance Agency, which oversees Fannie and Freddie. “Not only will this streamlined program assist borrowers, but broad acceptance and effective implementation could stabilize communities and property values.”

________________________________________________________

For further information or if you wish to see your property featured here.
Please Contact:The Smiths – Luxury Resort Portfolio at
(561) 445-2282

Luxury Resort Portfolio
Estate Specialists Representing Both Buyers And Sellers


The information herein is believed to be accurate but not guaranteed and may be subject to errors, omissions and changes without notice. This is not to be construed as a solicitation of property presently listed for sale. All information is derived from the Palm Beach County Property Appraisers website and the MLS.

The information herein is believed to be accurate but not guaranteed and may be subject to errors, omissions and changes without notice. This is not to be construed as a solicitation of property presently listed for sale.

All information is derived from the Palm Beach County Property Appraisers website and the MLS.

The Stampede of White Elephants

November 3, 2008
Slowing Sales of Luxury Properties
Reveal ‘Trophy Homes’ Weighing Owners Down

By: Christina S.N. Lewis
Source: Wall Street Journal
Date: October 31, 2008

As the luxury real-estate market slows to a snail’s pace, real-estate brokers find themselves struggling to sell a growing number of “trophy homes” that are quietly gaining a new title: white elephants.

The term hails from a legend that Siamese royalty gave albino elephants — revered but financially ruinous to maintain — to unpleasant courtiers. Today, the financial burden of carrying an overly big, overly unique manse is being shared by many wealthy owners, who are finding out the hard way that not everyone is willing to pay up for their vision of a dream home. Realtors concede a growing number of these pricey pachyderms are sitting unsold for months and selling at steep discounts, if at all.

Some sellers are getting creative. On Thursday, the owners of Castlewood, a gothic castle in West Orange, N.J., hosted a live jousting competition to generate buzz among real-estate brokers. Designed in the 1850s, the 5,000-square-foot stone house is on two acres and features two towers, a staff apartment and a round bedchamber with a 28-foot-high domed ceiling. On the market for two years, the homeowners switched to a new agent, Sam Joseph of Re/Max Village Square and dropped the asking price to $2 million from $2.8 million, originally.

For most of the housing market’s history, homeowners knew that big custom-designed homes that aren’t in scale with their environs might eventually cost them. “You build [a white elephant] because you were successful in your career and you want to treat yourself,” says Ed Kaminsky, who runs Premiere Estates, a California-based luxury auctioneer that specializes in marketing unique, hard-to-value houses. “But you can’t expect to get your money out.”

But it seems that tenet was forgotten during the boom. And in the meantime, formerly profligate consumers have become extremely price-conscious, says Gregory Hague, owner of Arizona-based Hague Partners, an affiliate of Christie’s Great Estates. “It used to be that buyers looked for something that got them excited and emotionally engaged and then tried to negotiate a good deal. Now they’re looking at price first.”

Steven L. Good, head of Chicago-based real-estate auction firm Sheldon Good & Co., says the division of the company that specializes in selling homes that cost from $1.5 million up to $40 million has seen a sharp increase in offerings in the last year from wealthy homeowners who are frustrated because their homes aren’t selling. And real-estate Web site Zillow.com turns up a number of unsold homes whose price tags and amenities are far fancier than their immediate environs might suggest.

In Broadview, a Seattle neighborhood known mostly for modest ranch houses, an Italian-style villa for sale features a four-car garage and an indoor koi pond. Nearly 10,000 square feet, the house has an asking price of $2.75 million and has been on the market for over a year.

Barney Garton, the listing agent, says the home’s rare Puget Sound views make it “a great value.” He says it hasn’t sold because of its “unusual” architecture and the downturn.

In Truckee, Calif., a lake community about 17 miles north of Lake Tahoe, a $3.95 million lakefront contemporary house with an elevator, indoor lap pool and two garages stands out from the neighboring A-frame log cabins. Built in 1985 and designed by the owner’s son, an architect, it was listed in June and is the most expensive house for sale on the lake. While it’s received less traffic than expected, the owner is in no hurry to sell, says one of the listing agents, Charles White, of Donner Lake Realty. A more recently remodeled home with fewer amenities but more lake frontage recently sold for about $3 million.

In Dallas, Braden Power, a developer of apartment complexes, spent more than seven years designing and building his dream house: an 8,500-square-foot showpiece with contemporary, traditional and Moorish influences that opens to a central “natatorium,” a double-height entrance courtyard with marble floors, two fireplaces, a mezzanine balcony and a central fountain and reflecting pool deep enough to swim in.

Mr. Power spared no expense: He hired an army of both traditional and contemporary designers. The automated exterior and interior lighting systems cost $500,000; the chandeliers are hand-carved, the floors are all solid marble or limestone (both indoor and outdoor) with radiant heating — a rarity in Dallas where the temperature seldom dips below 40 degrees. “This house was basically a creative outlet,” says Mr. Power, who says his inspirations were the Los Angeles and Miami boutique hotels designed by Ian Schrager.

But last year, Mr. Power decided the home was too big for a bachelor and he put it up for sale, unfinished. With a price tag of $13 million, it attracted a flurry of local press.

Despite being located on three-quarters of an acre on picturesque Turtle Creek, the home didn’t sell and now Mr. Power has relisted the house for $9.8 million with Doris Jacobs, of Allie Beth Allman & Associates.

Although Mr. Power acknowledges that he may not recoup his building and carrying costs, he says the home will become a good investment if fans of the design purchase his architectural plans and custom molds.

He has no regrets about building the house. “Honestly, this house is a dream to me,” says Mr. Power, who also plans to list the home for rent. “I think it’s the most perfect place that I’ve ever been in in my life.”

_________________________________________________________

For further information or if you wish to see your property featured here.
Please Contact:The Smiths – Luxury Resort Portfolio at
(561) 445-2282

Luxury Resort Portfolio
Estate Specialists Representing Both Buyers And Sellers



The information herein is believed to be accurate but not guaranteed and may be subject to errors, omissions and changes without notice. This is not to be construed as a solicitation of property presently listed for sale. All information is derived from the Palm Beach County Property Appraisers website and the MLS.

The information herein is believed to be accurate but not guaranteed and may be subject to errors, omissions and changes without notice. This is not to be construed as a solicitation of property presently listed for sale.

All information is derived from the Palm Beach County Property Appraisers website and the MLS.

Luxury Resort Portfolio Proudly Presents Our Newest Feature … “The Property Organizer”

October 10, 2008

The Smiths
proudly present our latest addition to the
Luxury Resort Portfolio Website
the
Luxury Resort Portfolio-Property Organizer
with
“Hot Sheet Updates”

Now you can get the newest listings in your Email Box!
Sign up for the Luxury Resort Portfolio -“Hot Sheet Updates”
and get the latest property reports and photos
as they come on the market!

Customize Your Search!
Customize How Often You Wish To Be Updated!

Simple to Sign Up & Free !!!

Compliments of The Smiths-Luxury Resort Portfolio

How Do You Sign Up? It’s Quick and Easy!

  1. Click on the image above
  2. Click on “Sign Up For Free Service”
  3. Complete the 4 Easy Steps!

The Property Organizer is an organizing tool that makes it easy to search for properties and to keep track of properties you are interested in. Whenever you see property listings that you like, you can save them for future reference and for sharing with family members and friends. The Property Organizer also allows you to easily manage your Email Update service and save your search criteria for later use.

If you have any questions on how to set up specific community searches,
please call or email Philip at (561) 445-2282 or Philip@LuxuryResortPortfolio.com
for assistance. We can set up the customized searches for you

___________________________________________________

For further information or if you wish to see your property featured here.
Contact:The Smiths – Luxury Resort Portfolio
at (561) 445-2282 or (561) 445-2299


The information herein is believed to be accurate but not guaranteed and may be subject to errors, omissions and changes without notice. This is not to be construed as a solicitation of property presently listed for sale. All information is derived from the Palm Beach County Property Appraisers website and the MLS.

The information herein is believed to be accurate but not guaranteed and may be subject to errors, omissions and changes without notice. This is not to be construed as a solicitation of property presently listed for sale.

All information is derived from the Palm Beach County Property Appraisers website and the MLS.

Home Sales Fell More Than Expected

September 24, 2008

By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
Published: September 24, 2008

WASHINGTON — A trade group for real estate agents says sales of existing homes fell 2.2 percent in August, but the number of unsold homes on the market also dropped sharply from the previous month’s record high.

The National Association of Realtors says sales fell to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.91 million units, from an upwardly revised pace of 5.02 million in July. Sales had been expected to fall by 1.6 percent, according to economists surveyed by Thomson/IFR.

There were 4.3 million unsold homes on the market, a 7 percent drop from the record set in July. It was the steepest drop in inventory since December 2006. At the current sales pace, it would take 10.4 months to sell all the properties.

Until the inventory level is reduced to more normal levels, analysts say, the housing slump will probably persist. Inventories are being driven higher by a wave of mortgage foreclosures.

“We hope the downward trend in inventories continues,” the trade group’s chief economist, Lawrence Yun, said. “Home prices will not stabilize as long as inventories remain high.”

Median prices — the point at which half of the homes sold for less and half for more — fell 9.5 percent from a year ago to $203,100, the largest price decline on records dating to 1999. Sales were 10.7 percent below last year’s levels.

The national decline in home values coupled with shaky lending standards during the real estate boom are the driving forces behind rising mortgage defaults and foreclosures. They have spurred a credit crisis that has shaken Wall Street and caused the Bush administration to propose a $700 billion financial industry bailout.

Mr. Yun said the trade group was sending a letter to Congress in support of the rescue plan. While buyers are pouncing on lower prices — especially in places like California, Florida and Nevada — sales are sluggish in formerly stable markets like the Pacific Northwest and Charlotte, N.C., he added.

_______________________________________________________________

For further information or if you wish to see your property featured here.
Please Contact:
The Smiths – Luxury Resort Portfolio at (561) 445-2282

Luxury Resort Portfolio
Estate Specialists Representing Both Buyers And Sellers



The information herein is believed to be accurate but not guaranteed and may be subject to errors, omissions and changes without notice. This is not to be construed as a solicitation of property presently listed for sale. All information is derived from the Palm Beach County Property Appraisers website and the MLS.

The information herein is believed to be accurate but not guaranteed and may be subject to errors, omissions and changes without notice. This is not to be construed as a solicitation of property presently listed for sale.

All information is derived from the Palm Beach County Property Appraisers website and the MLS.

Housing-Price Economist Sees Market as Near Bottom

September 16, 2008

September 12, 2008
Source: Wall Street Journal (wsj.com)
By: Justin Lahart

Wellesley College economist Karl Case, the “Case” in the widely followed S&P/Case-Shiller index of U.S. housing prices, says he thinks that the housing market may be near a bottom. If he is right, financial firms may be able to breathe a sigh of relief.

At its most recent reading for June, the Case-Shiller index was 19% below its July 2006 peak, and many analysts say the decline is far from over. The inventory of unsold homes on the market is still very high, they point out, and until that excess is absorbed, it is a buyers’ market. Moreover, financial firms, hobbled by mortgage debt gone bad, are trying to rebuild cash reserves, making the firms less willing to extend loans to would-be buyers.

And the combined effects of the housing and credit crises have damaged the balance sheets and credit-worthiness of many households, leaving them a high hurdle to buying a new home. Yale University professor Robert Shiller, the co-creator of the Case/Shiller index, is among those who think it will be some time before prices stabilize.

But in a paper presented before the Brookings Institution in Washington yesterday, Mr. Case argues there is cause for optimism. He notes that of the 20 metropolitan areas covered by the Case/Shiller index, nine have shown prices slightly improving in recent months. He also says that the relationship between incomes and home prices has neared a level seen at the end of past housing slumps.

How far home prices fall matters greatly for financial institutions, Goldman Sachs economist Jan Hatzius argues in another paper presented at Brookings. If the Case/Shiller index stays at its June level, total mortgage losses will come to $473 billion, Mr. Hatzius estimates. That is more than the $400 billion in losses he projected in an earlier study conducted with economists David Greenlaw at Morgan Stanley, Anil Kashyap at the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business and Hyung Song Shin at Princeton University. Mr. Hatzius estimates that a further 10% decline in home prices would lead to losses of $636 billion and a 20% decline would lead to $868 billion in losses.

Mr. Hatzius used state-level data from the Mortgage Bankers Association from 1998 through the second quarter of this year to analyze the relationship between home-price declines and foreclosures in the current environment. That means he isn’t extrapolating from earlier periods, as he did in his previous study, when lender and borrower behavior may have been different. It also allows him to account for differences in the performance of different types of mortgages.

Under the scenario in which home prices fall another 10%, leading to $636 billion in mortgage losses, Mr. Hatzius calculates lenders will cut the credit they extend to final borrowers by nearly $2 trillion, knocking 1.8% off of gross domestic product growth. A weak dollar, low overnight rates and fiscal stimulus help mitigate the damage, he says.

The situation would be much more dire if Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac cut back on the amount of mortgages they guaranteed. One virtue of the government takeover of the two mortgage titans this week is that business doesn’t look as if it will be curtailed, Mr. Hatzius says.

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Please Contact:
The Smiths – Luxury Resort Portfolio at (561) 445-2282

Luxury Resort Portfolio
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The information herein is believed to be accurate but not guaranteed and may be subject to errors, omissions and changes without notice. This is not to be construed as a solicitation of property presently listed for sale. All information is derived from the Palm Beach County Property Appraisers website and the MLS.
The information herein is believed to be accurate but not guaranteed and may be subject to errors, omissions and changes without notice. This is not to be construed as a solicitation of property presently listed for sale.

All information is derived from the Palm Beach County Property Appraisers website and the MLS.

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