California threatens to fine cities that don’t build enough homes



The state of California is trying to address housing shortages with a new bill that gives it the power to fine cities that don’t build enough new homes. Cities in the state could face fines of up to $600,000 per month if they don’t meet building targets, lawmakers said. Under the bill, courts will be […]

Redfin teams up with Opendoor to expand its Instant Offers service



Web-based real estate brokerage Redfin is expanding the availability of its instant offers service via a partnership with iBuying company Opendoor. The partnership, announced last week, will allow homeowners who sell their homes on Redfin’s platform to get instant offers on their properties. The way iBuying works is that companies like Opendoor buy the homes […]

More renters are relying on online reviews to help them choose a home



Consumers are increasingly relying on online reviews and rating websites when it comes to choosing a rental property, according to a new survey from Binary Fountain. The reputation management firm’s 2019 Renter Insight & Digital Engagement survey of more than 1,000 adults searching for a rental home, found that consumers are increasingly using online rating […]

New bill proposes cutting FHA insurance premiums for first-time buyers



Lawmakers in the U.S. House of Representatives have approved a bill that would reduce the cost of upfront mortgage insurance fees on Federal Housing Administration-sponsored loans for first-time buyers. The bill comes with a caveat however, as first-time buyers would need to undergo a housing counseling program about sustaining homeownership in order to qualify for […]

Zillow highlights 36 metros where high school grads can afford a mortgage



Households including at least one person with a high school diploma or GED can afford the typical mortgage payment in most large metro areas across the U.S., according to a new analysis by Zillow. But soaring home values that have outpaced incomes have made down payments a barrier for many, particularly first-time home buyers. Mortgage […]

Experts worry about rise of ‘alt-doc’ loans



Some mortgage products that were widely used prior to the Great Recession, and cited as one of its main causes, are said to be making a comeback – and that’s becoming a concern for those worried about an impeding new recession, HousingWire reported. The volume of home loans with “alternate documentation” has more than doubled […]

Experts warn falling inventories could lead to a return to bidding wars



Bidding wars and faster home sales could soon become the norm again if the latest forecast on home inventories by realtor.com holds true. The report forecasts that the number of homes for sale in the U.S. is set to decline again in the next few months, limiting the bargaining power of buyers until well into […]

Village Hearth Cohousing sets the trend for senior LGBT communities



A new niche is opening up for cohousing communities focused on seniors who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender, an article in RealtorMag reported last week. One such community in Durham, North Carolina, is already under works, having broken ground in November 2018 with a completion date set for April 2020. The community, called […]

Realtor.com adds commute time filter to its search listings



One of the most important factors when considering a home to buy is the time it takes to commute to work. According to a realtor.com survey of 600 of its users, around 85% of buyers say they would even sacrifice other sought-after features, such as square footage, home style and lot size, in order for […]

Oregon set to be first state to ban single-family zoning



Oregon is set to become the first U.S. state to alter its single-family zoning laws in order to encourage more homebuilding. Several cities have passed similar bills in recent months, but Oregon could be the first to introduce state-level legislation, NPR reported this week. Oregon’s House and Senate this week passed a bill that will […]