Deadly California Fires Stretch an Already Tight Housing Market

Ethan de Seife and Laura Holtan moved to California’s Sonoma County from Vermont last year with their newborn son, two cats and a dog in tow, immediately running up against a harsh reality: the state’s housing market is expensive, and inventory-starved.

84c92 60x 1 Deadly California Fires Stretch an Already Tight Housing Market

Santa Rosa, California, on Oct. 12, 2017.

It took the couple a month of scouring online listings and vetting properties before they secured a four-bedroom house to rent for $2,800 a month in the Hidden Valley neighborhood of Santa Rosa.

Now, they have to start again — while picking up the pieces of a life reduced to rubble. De Seife and Holtan awoke in the middle of the night on Oct. 9 to the smell of smoke and were soon evacuated as fire roared toward the area, ultimately burning down their house. The family is bunking with friends south of San Francisco and weighing offers of assistance while trying to determine a more permanent living plan, which may ultimately mean leaving the state.

“There’s nothing off the table,” said De Seife, 44. “If we can’t get any of these things going, we might just go.”

The fires ravaging Northern California’s wine country have left thousands in a similar plight, and from a real estate perspective, the disaster is happening in one of the worst-possible places. The area has already been squeezed by a severe housing crunch and escalating values — with rents in Santa Rosa rising the most of any big U.S. metropolitan area in the past five years — leaving few options for people to live while homes are being rebuilt.

84c92 60x 1 Deadly California Fires Stretch an Already Tight Housing Market

California faces a different set of housing challenges from other U.S. areas that are reeling from recent natural disasters. In Houston, where more than 100,000 homes were flooded by Hurricane Harvey, there was a glut of new rental apartments to house people. Texas and Florida, battered by Hurricane Irma, have active markets for new construction.

“Even though the number of households affected by wildfires is substantially less than households affected by Harvey, Irma, and Maria, those who are displaced are likely to have a much more difficult time relocating,” said Ralph McLaughlin, chief economist at real estate website Trulia.

Soaring Prices

Santa Rosa, the Sonoma County seat, has seen property values soar amid strict building regulations and demand from people seeking refuge from million-dollar home prices in San Francisco, about an hour’s drive to the south. Rents have jumped 50 percent in the past five years, the fastest growth of the top 233 U.S. metropolitan areas, according to Zillow. The median home price was $599,000 as of August, a 77 percent increase from the same month in 2012, Zillow data show.

There’s little available to lease, with the apartment occupancy rate in the Santa Rosa-Petaluma market at 96.5 percent in the third quarter, according to RealPage, which considers a 95 percent occupancy rate essentially full.

84c92 60x 1 Deadly California Fires Stretch an Already Tight Housing Market

Residences burned by wildfires in Santa Rosa, California, on Oct. 12, 2017.

With the fires still blazing, it’s difficult to quantify the number of homes that may be affected. And for now, people are still grappling with loss and looking out for the safety of friends and neighbors. So far, more than 221,000 acres of land and 3,500 homes and other structures have been destroyed, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection. At least 31 people have died.

Related: Wildfires Trample California’s $58 Billion Wine Industry

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Bay Area real estate: Home loan delinquencies go down, down, down

It’s been years since the Bay Area housing market began its dramatic, post-recession appreciation in prices, and delinquency rates for home loans keep falling across the region.

The foreclosure nightmares of the Great Recession are now a vague memory. In the San Jose metropolitan area — defined as including all of Santa Clara and San Benito counties — only 1.4 percent of mortgages were delinquent by at least 30 days in July, compared with 1.7 percent a year earlier. The share of “seriously delinquent” mortgages — at least 90 days past due — fell from 0.7 percent in July 2016 to 0.5 percent in July 2017.

In the San Francisco metropolitan area, 1.8 percent of home loans were in the early stages of delinquency — at least 30 days overdue — in July, down from 2.1 percent one year earlier. More seriously delinquent loans, of 90 days or more, were down from 0.9 percent in July 2016 to 0.6 percent in July 2017. (The San Francisco metro area includes Oakland, as well as all of Alameda, Contra Costa, San Mateo and Marin counties.)

This is according to a new report by the CoreLogic real estate information service, which periodically gauges the mortgage market’s health by measuring early-stage delinquency rates.

Compare those latest numbers — dramatically low — to the rather shocking state of the market back in December 2008, when the region was in the middle of the recession: Half the homes sold throughout the Bay Area in that month were foreclosures. In Santa Clara County, foreclosures accounted for 41.2 percent of all homes sold in December 2008 — on the heels of the Sept. 29 stock market crash — compared with 8 percent in December 2007.

“The whole Bay Area is now well below the national figure for foreclosures,” said Frank Nothaft, CoreLogic’s chief economist, “and that is because the local economy is very good, unemployment is very low and incomes are rising — which means most families have the income coming in to enable them to stay current on their mortgage.”

Also, because prices are up in the region — the median sales price of a single-family home is above $1 million in several counties — homeowners “generally have a lot of equity wealth,” Martell said. And studies show that homeowners with lots of equity to lose tend not to lose it.

Nationally, according to the new CoreLogic report, the share of delinquencies overdue by 30-59 days fell from 2.3 percent in July 2016 to 2 percent in July 2017. The “seriously delinquent” rate fell from 2.5 percent to 1.9 percent during that same one-year period — and remains near the 10-year low of 1.7 percent.

Still, Frank Martell, president and CEO of CoreLogic, pointed to some “worrying trends” in other parts of the nation.

“For example,” he said, “markets affected by the decline in oil production or anemic job creation have seen an increase in defaults. We see this in markets such as Anchorage, Baton Rouge and Lafayette, Louisiana, where the serious delinquency rate rose over the last year.”

Article source: http://www.mercurynews.com/2017/10/10/bay-area-real-estate-home-loan-delinquencies-go-down-down-down/

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Increasing number of SF apartments offering ‘move in specials’

  • a0ae7 brod Increasing number of SF apartments offering move in specials





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We all know the San Francisco rental market is tough.

In recent years, it has presented challengers for renters, but now it seems to be getting tougher for landlords. If the number of “move in specials” is anything to go by, filling vacant units this fall isn’t as easy as it usually is.

Though hardly scientific research, a filter of “special” on apartments for rent in San Francisco via Craigslist turned up over 450 possibilities. And it’s not only the neighborhoods filled with luxury towers offering these specials. Yes, SoMa has many of them, but as the gallery above proves, there are deals in the Sunset, the Haight, Pacific Heights–really, most any corner of the city, and in both new buildings and old.

Is the market softening?

For example, if the unit in question is rent controlled, “investors want to keep the rental rate as high as possible,” Way explained. To illustrate, say a $3,000 unit drops its price to $2,500. “Then it would take seven to 10 years to get back to the $3,000 if the rent control increase was on average 2 percent a year.” On the other hand, if the price stays at $3,000 with an incentive of a free month, the lost income is easily recouped.

So, S.F. tenants and prospective tenants, peruse the gallery above of apartments that seem to want you more than you want them. We hesitate to use the word “deal” with these rents, but “move in special” has its own kind of appeal.

Anna Marie Erwert writes from both the renter and new buyer perspective, having (finally) achieved both statuses. She focuses on national real estate trends, specializing in the San Francisco Bay Area and Pacific Northwest. Follow Anna on Twitter: @AnnaMarieErwert

Article source: http://blog.sfgate.com/ontheblock/2017/10/12/increasing-number-of-s-f-apartments-offering-move-in-specials/

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Bay Area real estate: Home loan delinquencies go down, down, down



It’s been years since the Bay Area housing market began its dramatic, post-recession appreciation in prices, and delinquency rates for home loans keep falling across the region.

The foreclosure nightmares of the Great Recession are now a vague memory. In the San Jose metropolitan area — defined as including all of Santa Clara and San Benito counties — only 1.4 percent of mortgages were delinquent by at least 30 days in July, compared with 1.7 percent a year earlier. The share of “seriously delinquent” mortgages — at least 90 days past due — fell from 0.7 percent in July 2016 to 0.5 percent in July 2017.

In the San Francisco metropolitan area, 1.8 percent of home loans were in the early stages of delinquency — at least 30 days overdue — in July, down from 2.1 percent one year earlier. More seriously delinquent loans, of 90 days or more, were down from 0.9 percent in July 2016 to 0.6 percent in July 2017. (The San Francisco metro area includes Oakland, as well as all of Alameda, Contra Costa, San Mateo and Marin counties.)

This is according to a new report by the CoreLogic real estate information service, which periodically gauges the mortgage market’s health by measuring early-stage delinquency rates.

Compare those latest numbers — dramatically low — to the rather shocking state of the market back in December 2008, when the region was in the middle of the recession: Half the homes sold throughout the Bay Area in that month were foreclosures. In Santa Clara County, foreclosures accounted for 41.2 percent of all homes sold in December 2008 — on the heels of the Sept. 29 stock market crash — compared with 8 percent in December 2007.

“The whole Bay Area is now well below the national figure for foreclosures,” said Frank Nothaft, CoreLogic’s chief economist, “and that is because the local economy is very good, unemployment is very low and incomes are rising — which means most families have the income coming in to enable them to stay current on their mortgage.”

Also, because prices are up in the region — the median sales price of a single-family home is above $1 million in several counties — homeowners “generally have a lot of equity wealth,” Martell said. And studies show that homeowners with lots of equity to lose tend not to lose it.

Nationally, according to the new CoreLogic report, the share of delinquencies overdue by 30-59 days fell from 2.3 percent in July 2016 to 2 percent in July 2017. The “seriously delinquent” rate fell from 2.5 percent to 1.9 percent during that same one-year period — and remains near the 10-year low of 1.7 percent.

Still, Frank Martell, president and CEO of CoreLogic, pointed to some “worrying trends” in other parts of the nation.

“For example,” he said, “markets affected by the decline in oil production or anemic job creation have seen an increase in defaults. We see this in markets such as Anchorage, Baton Rouge and Lafayette, Louisiana, where the serious delinquency rate rose over the last year.”

Article source: http://www.santacruzsentinel.com/article/NE/20171010/NEWS/171019951

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Bay Area housing: Home loan defaults are rare these days

It’s been years since the Bay Area housing market began its dramatic, post-recession appreciation in prices, and delinquency rates for home loans keep falling across the region.

The foreclosure nightmares of the Great Recession are now a vague memory. In the San Jose metropolitan area — defined as including all of Santa Clara and San Benito counties — only 1.4 percent of mortgages were delinquent by at least 30 days in July, compared with 1.7 percent a year earlier. The share of “seriously delinquent” mortgages — at least 90 days past due — fell from 0.7 percent in July 2016 to 0.5 percent in July 2017.

In the San Francisco metropolitan area, 1.8 percent of home loans were in the early stages of delinquency — at least 30 days overdue — in July, down from 2.1 percent one year earlier. More seriously delinquent loans, of 90 days or more, were down from 0.9 percent in July 2016 to 0.6 percent in July 2017. (The San Francisco metro area includes Oakland, as well as all of Alameda, Contra Costa, San Mateo and Marin counties.)

This is according to a new report by the CoreLogic real estate information service, which periodically gauges the mortgage market’s health by measuring early-stage delinquency rates.

Compare those latest numbers — dramatically low — to the rather shocking state of the market back in December 2008, when the region was in the middle of the recession: Half the homes sold throughout the Bay Area in that month were foreclosures. In Santa Clara County, foreclosures accounted for 41.2 percent of all homes sold in December 2008 — on the heels of the Sept. 29 stock market crash — compared with 8 percent in December 2007.

“The whole Bay Area is now well below the national figure for foreclosures,” said Frank Nothaft, CoreLogic’s chief economist, “and that is because the local economy is very good, unemployment is very low and incomes are rising — which means most families have the income coming in to enable them to stay current on their mortgage.”

Also, because prices are up in the region — the median sales price of a single-family home is above $1 million in several counties — homeowners “generally have a lot of equity wealth,” Martell said. And studies show that homeowners with lots of equity to lose tend not to lose it.

Nationally, according to the new CoreLogic report, the share of delinquencies overdue by 30-59 days fell from 2.3 percent in July 2016 to 2 percent in July 2017. The “seriously delinquent” rate fell from 2.5 percent to 1.9 percent during that same one-year period — and remains near the 10-year low of 1.7 percent.

Still, Frank Martell, president and CEO of CoreLogic, pointed to some “worrying trends” in other parts of the nation.

“For example,” he said, “markets affected by the decline in oil production or anemic job creation have seen an increase in defaults. We see this in markets such as Anchorage, Baton Rouge and Lafayette, Louisiana, where the serious delinquency rate rose over the last year.”

Article source: http://www.mercurynews.com/2017/10/10/bay-area-real-estate-home-loan-delinquencies-go-down-down-down/

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