REBNY to honor 7 NYC real estate leaders at annual awards banquet

Inmannews - Fri, 09/14/2018 - 12:11pm
The Real Estate Board of New York (REBNY) announced the yearly winners of the trade associations top awards for outstanding professional success and exceptional contributions to the industry.
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As sustainable building heats up, expect queries from homebuyers

Inmannews - Fri, 09/14/2018 - 11:36am
Interest in sustainable building is on the rise, sparking fierce competition along the building supply chain and a litany of questions from home buyers.
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What agents are loving about Apple’s latest upgrades

Inmannews - Fri, 09/14/2018 - 10:53am
It’s the first half of September, so you know that means Apple has a slate of new hardware and features to keep us itching for that next upgrade. Here's what agents are saying about the new tech.
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The Inman Weekender, September 15-16, 2018

Inmannews - Fri, 09/14/2018 - 10:47am
The week's top real estate industry stories, and practical advice to use this weekend.
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‘Not today, Flo’: Realtors livestream, struggle to find power as Hurricane Florence makes landfall

Inmannews - Fri, 09/14/2018 - 9:45am
The storm, which touched down around 7:15 a.m. Friday, brought heavy rain and winds of 90 miles an hour to parts of North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia.
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Redfin CEO Glenn Kelman: There’s too much money in real estate

Inmannews - Fri, 09/14/2018 - 8:45am
Glenn Kelman, Redfin’s CEO and president took the helm of the real estate brokerage 13 years ago, this month. He talks to Inman about the ups and downs.
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Inman Archive: Redfin (2018)

Inmannews - Fri, 09/14/2018 - 7:12am
All our ongoing and archived coverage of national brokerage Redfin.
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Closing emergency! 6 last-minute snags and how to solve them

Inmannews - Fri, 09/14/2018 - 2:00am
Whether it's a lender who over-promised and under-delivered the timeline for loan approval, buyers or sellers who dropped the ball in some way (despite numerous reminders from their agent) or an agent who either failed to communicate timely details or wasn't paying close attention to all key milestones of the transaction — problems occur when you're down to the wire. Here's how to fix last-minute closing issues fast.
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How to elevate your luxury brand by being a ‘concierge agent’

Inmannews - Fri, 09/14/2018 - 1:00am
The term “concierge agent” might be new to some, but it's what those of us who care, who are available and who are present have always been. We are all-hands-on-deck Realtors who are always available to our clients. Here's how you can become one too.
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Selling apartments? Here’s what you should know

Inmannews - Fri, 09/14/2018 - 12:02am
Although there is some overlap between selling strategies for apartments and houses, there are a few unique selling opportunities in marketing apartments or condos, too.
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Realogy makes exec shifts: new Coldwell Banker COO and NRT marketing lead

Inmannews - Thu, 09/13/2018 - 4:17pm
Liz Gehringer, a member of Realogy’s leadership team since 2006, was named today as the new Chief Operating Officer at Coldwell Banker Real Estate.
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Amazon’s Bezos pledges $2 billion to fight homelessness, improve preschool access

Inmannews - Thu, 09/13/2018 - 4:08pm
Dubbed the Bezos Day One Fund, the efforts to combat homelessness will focus on young families and its approach is modeled after the values of Seattle’s Mary’s Place emergency shelter, read the tweeted statement.
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Hurricane Florence is aimed at $1 trillion worth of real estate

Inmannews - Thu, 09/13/2018 - 3:49pm
As has been the case in recent catastrophic hurricane events, most recently Hurricane Harvey's 2017 landfall in Houston, most of the fear is rooted in the impact of flooding, a result of hours of prolonged downpours swelling rural and municipal bodies of water.
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Hurricane Florence spurs calls for long-term NFIP reauthorization

American Apartment Owners Association - Thu, 09/13/2018 - 1:58pm

The impending devastation of Hurricane Florence is causing a national stir, forcing many to worry about the potential threat of loss of life and property damage.

As the storm inches closer to the Mid Atlantic, The National Association of Realtors are calling on the government to pass a long-term resolution for the National Flood Insurance Program.

“Although the National Flood Insurance Program is currently authorized through November, the National Association of Realtors remains focused on ensuring Congress and the White House enact long-term reauthorization and reforms to strengthen the program’s sustainability,” National Association of Realtors President and CEO of RE/MAX Boone Realty Elizabeth Mendenhall said.

“Flooding is the most common disaster in the United States, one that affects Americans in communities both coastal and inland every year,” Mendenhall said. “As another potential historic flooding event looms, we urge Congress to take up the fight for responsible long-term NFIP reform as swiftly as possible.”

A recent analysis from CoreLogic shows that 758,657 homes in North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia could be affected by the Category 4 storm, estimating that reconstruction costs could total up to $170.2 billion.

“In these times, we are reminded of the importance of peace of mind for property owners with access to quality and affordable flood insurance,” Mendenhall concluded.

This isn’t the first time that a call for resolution has been requested.

Earlier this year, Ranking Member of the House Committee on Financial Services Maxine Waters, D-Calif. and 61 members of Congress demanded a long-term reauthorization of the controversial NFIP.



The post Hurricane Florence spurs calls for long-term NFIP reauthorization appeared first on AAOA.

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Don’t buy these beloved architectural icons now up for sale

Inmannews - Thu, 09/13/2018 - 12:47pm
These beautiful homes are significant architectural gems, no doubt, but historic money pits nonetheless. They're on the market, but be wary.
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iBuyers react to Opendoor’s acquisition of Open Listings

Inmannews - Thu, 09/13/2018 - 12:37pm
Inman asked iBuyers Knock, Offerpad and Felix Homes to offer thoughts on Opendoor's acquisition of Open Listings, a deal that instantly raises the stakes.
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LGBT+ couples are buying houses like never before, report finds

Inmannews - Thu, 09/13/2018 - 12:33pm
LGBT+ couples are buying houses like never before, an annual report from The National Association of Gay and Lesbian Real Estate Professionals found.
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The Top 10 Things Guests Want in an Airbnb

American Apartment Owners Association - Thu, 09/13/2018 - 12:13pm

Airbnb could be your key to financial freedom — but if you want to be successful renting out a room or a second home to travelers, you’d better offer all the right comforts.

According to a survey commissioned by Airbnb, U.S. travelers say when they choose a rental, amenities are a big deal — more important than location; shopping and dining in the area; or the nearness to family and friends. (Sorry, Uncle Lou!)

Using photos from actual Airbnb homes, we count down the 10 amenities that guests search the listings for most often, according to Airbnb. Here’s what any host needs if you want to earn big by putting your extra space to work.

10. Heat

Hotels are infamously drafty, and long nights in a cold room can knock an otherwise perfect vacation down a few points. Make your Airbnb more appealing to potential renters by highlighting the type of heating system in the home.

A cozy fireplace is a hotly desired amenity, especially in cities with frigid winters.

If you are renting out just a portion of your home, it’s important to give guests the ability to control the temperature in their living area.

9. TV

Travel is just as much about relaxation as it is about activities, and chilling out in front of a television is one of Americans’ most beloved pastimes.

Even if you are renting out only one room in your home, make sure the room has a TV. Even better is if the TV has access to premium cable channels, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and so on.

A DVD and/or Blu-ray player can make guests feel even more at home, especially if you have a collection of popular movies for them to choose from.

8. A whirlpool spa

A whirlpool spa will make any traveler say, “Ahhhhhhhhhhh, what a wonderful vacation!” It’s the perfect way for your guests to unwind.

True, a Jacuzzi can be a big expense for the owner of an Airbnb, but the spa can help pay for itself as it attracts more renters to your home.

Because the hot water can present unique health health issues, you’ll want to post a safety warning in a conspicuous spot near the spa tub.

7. A washing machine

Traveling can be tough pretty tough on clothes. When vacationers take trips to beaches, forests or amusements parks, they may acquire a few stains to go along with their great memories.

Plus, who wants to lug around clothing for every day of a long vacation? It’s more convenient to do laundry along the way. For these reasons, many Airbnb users say they search the listings for rentals with access to a washing machine.

To make your washroom even more appealing, provide laundry detergent and fabric softeners for guests to use.

6. Wi-Fi

The world runs on Wi-Fi, and your Airbnb will get poor reviews if your guests can’t stay connected to their loved ones, the latest news or (sigh) their jobs while staying in your place.

To make your customers feel more secure, set up a Wi-Fi network exclusively for guests, and give it a name that sounds professional and legitimate.

Change your Wi-Fi password for each guest, and assure your visitors that no one else has the password.

5. Air conditioning

No one wants to struggle with sleeping in sweltering heat during a vacation. To have a successful Airbnb, it’s super important that you have adequate air conditioning.

Even if it’s not customary in your region, a central A/C unit controlled by a thermostat is the best option for keeping all guests happy.

Make sure each room you rent out has access to a thermostat, so guests can control the temperature in their space.

4. Pet-friendliness

Pets are part of the family, so it’s only natural that guests want to bring them along on a family vacation.

If you want to make as much money as possible as an Airbnb host, you should welcome guests traveling with pets to stay in your home.

You may think a pet-free policy will save you money on repairs and cleanups, but you’ll risk turning away lots of potential customers. And how much harm can an animal do in a few days, anyway?

3. Free parking

Guests prefer to park at or in front of the house they’re staying in. They like being able to look out and see that their vehicle is safe.

If you live in a neighborhood that has parking meters, try to avoid making your guests use paid parking spots.

Guests are already paying for the cost of traveling. The extra expense and hassle of inconvenient parking could cause them to choose another Airbnb.

2. A kitchen that’s got everything

Especially on a long trip, eating out for breakfast, lunch and dinner can become exhausting, expensive and time-consuming.

Guests want the option of being able to cook for themselves. It’s one of the biggest benefits of staying in a home rather than at a hotel.

So, offer your guests access to your kitchen — and to pots, pans, utensils, plates and anything else they’ll need.

1. A pool

Children (and adults, too) flip out when they learn they are staying at a hotel that has a swimming pool, and the same goes for an Airbnb with a pool. A pool is the most searched-for rental amenity, Airbnb says.

Guests are particularly happy when a pool comes with towels in a convenient location. Keep safety and liability in mind: Be sure your pool is clean and safe, and keep life preservers nearby. It’s wise to get the pool inspected at least once a year.


The post The Top 10 Things Guests Want in an Airbnb appeared first on AAOA.

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How has agent safety changed since Beverly Carter’s death?

Inmannews - Thu, 09/13/2018 - 12:10pm
Four years ago this month, Arkansas real estate agent Beverly Carter was brutally murdered while showing a home to a deranged killer masquerading as a potential homebuyer. Her death sparked an industry-wide conversation about agent safety, pushing agents, brokers, and other real estate professionals to come up with solutions. Her family made agent safety a personal […]
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LA County to Impose Rent Cap in Unincorporated Areas

American Apartment Owners Association - Thu, 09/13/2018 - 12:00pm

Over protests from landlords and real estate brokers, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted 4-1 Tuesday in favor of an ordinance to temporarily limit rent increases to 3 percent in unincorporated areas of the county.

Dozens of renters turned out carrying signs reading “The rent is too damn high,” while many landlords and agencies that represent property owners countered that the ordinance would hurt rather than boost housing supply.

Supervisor Kathryn Barger cast the dissenting vote against the interim ordinance, which is expected to come back to the board for another vote in 60 days and, if adopted, to take effect 30 days later. It would set base rents as of Sept. 11 and impose a cap for six months.

Supervisor Sheila Kuehl championed the plan to limit rents while the county considers longer-term solutions, saying it will help solve the homelessness crisis.

She said she was mystified by some policymakers’ inability to see the link between rental rates and homelessness.

“They look at 58,000 homeless people in Los Angeles County and they say why?” Kuehl said.

Helping those living on the street with mental illness has been a critical focus, but Kuehl pointed to statistics showing that only one-third of the homeless population has an identifiable mental health problem. Most of the remaining two-thirds are newly homeless and without a home because of economic issues, she said.

Seniors are particularly hard-hit, Kuehl said. The last annual point-in-time count by the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority found a 22 percent jump in homeless people 62 years and older.

Advocates on both sides said research was on their side.

Kuehl and Supervisor Hilda Solis, who co-authored the motion, cited research by USC and UCLA professors finding that rent regulations can help make housing more affordable.

“Limiting rent increases cannot fully solve the housing crisis confronting much of urban California, but rent regulations are one tool to deal with sharp upticks in rent and have less deleterious effects than is often imagined,” said Manuel Pastor, a USC sociology professor.

However, the argument seems unsettled. Recent research by Stanford University professors concludes that rent control incentivizes condominium conversions and sales to owner-occupants, reducing the supply of rental housing and increasing gentrification.

In evaluating the effects of a proposed repeal of the 1995 Costa-Hawkins Rental Housing Act — which limits rent control to older housing stock — the state Legislative Analyst’s Office concluded that rent control would likely lower rents but also reduce new construction and lower property values.

Beverly Kenworthy of the California Apartment Association told the board that “rent control is not the same as affordable housing” and once the ordinance is passed, “(renters) will still not be able to afford their rent.”

However, Tyler Anderson of the Los Angeles Center for Community Law and Action told the board that tenants are seeking help with rent increases of 40 to 80 percent.

Beverly Roberts, a 30-year resident of South Los Angeles who advocates rent control and also owns income property, said she is seeing her “community being ripped apart” by high rents. “Landlords don’t need to gouge tenants to get a fair return on our investment.”

Some in favor of rent control said private equity firms are buying up property, while landlords and landlord associations said the county ordinance would hurt small property owners and decrease the value of properties they worked hard to own.

“They are flesh-and-blood people who scrimped and saved” to afford their properties, Janet Gagnon of the Apartment Association of Greater Los Angeles said of “mom-and-pop” owners. “They are being clubbed like baby seals with this rent freeze.”

Landlord advocates suggested other solutions, including offering rental vouchers for seniors and low-income renters.

Others suggested the county was meddling where it shouldn’t.

“Are you now going to start telling the gas stations what they can sell their gas for? Are you going to tell Albertsons what they can sell their milk for?,” a real estate broker asked.

Kuehl replied, “I don’t know, I’ll talk to Chevron about that.”

Barger offered an amendment that would allow owners to “bank” increases from year to year and give landlords greater leeway to evict tenants during the first two years of their lease.

“I do not believe rent control is the right way to go,” Barger said, but indicated she would vote for the ordinance if her amendment was accepted.

“I appreciate your stretching to get there,” Kuehl said, but urged her colleagues to vote against the proposed amendment, which failed to get a second.

Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, who abstained from a vote last week that put a similar cap on rents at mobile home parks in unincorporated areas, highlighted the temporary nature of the measure.

“While rent control is often described as a blunt or inelegant tool during times of crisis, it is warranted to prevent displacement and to protect tenants,” he said. “Unlike Prop 10, the rent increase moratorium considered by the board today was designed to be temporary. It is our job to create a safety net when needed, and now is one of those times.”

The ordinance, if ultimately adopted, is estimated to affect 200,000 people living in rental properties.

Solis urged other cities to “do the right thing” and join the county in imposing rent regulations.

Proposition 10, the ballot measure to repeal Costa-Hawkins, will go before voters on Nov. 6.


The post LA County to Impose Rent Cap in Unincorporated Areas appeared first on AAOA.

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