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FHA significantly expands LIHTC financing program for multifamily properties

The Department of Housing and Urban Development announced this week that the Federal Housing Administration is expanding its low-income housing tax credit financing program for multifamily properties. According to HUD, the move is a “significant expansion” of an FHA pilot program that streamlines mortgage insurance applications for affordable housing developments that have equity through the LIHTC program. Back in 2012, the FHA rolled out a LIHTC pilot program that dealt specifically with applications to refinance mortgage debt under FHA's Section 223(f) program. Under the new expansion, FHA will begin to support “new construction and substantial rehabilitation” under its Section 221(d)(4) and Section 220 programs. “Today, we take another important step to stimulate capital investment in affordable housing at a time when we need affordable housing more than ever,” HUD Secretary Ben Carson said in a statement. “We’re also applying the lessons we’ve learned from our earlier pilot program to streamline our processing for new construction and substantial rehabilitation developments, so we can get these deals done quicker and more efficiently.” According to HUD, the FHA’s expanded pilot program will “ensure faster and more efficient processing for low-risk, LIHTC transactions by eliminating redundant reviews.” Per details provided by HUD, the average processing time for LIHTC deals is currently 90 days. “A shorter application review period allows borrowers to lock in better interest rates sooner, an important capability in a rising interest rate environment,” HUD stated in a release. The move has the potential to have significant impact on the multifamily financing space. According to HUD, FHA multifamily transactions that include LIHTC financing make up approximately 30% of the FHA’s total multifamily volume. And the FHA expects that by including its Section 221(d) and Section 220 programs with the existing LIHTC program, the FHA will “support more production and preservation of critically needed affordable multifamily housing.” For much more on the FHA LIHTC expansion, click here.

Homebuilder confidence stabilizes, hinting at solid spring home buying season

Despite affordability and labor concerns, homebuilder confidence held steady at 62 points in March, according to the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index. “Builders report the market is stabilizing following the slowdown at the end of 2018 and they anticipate a solid spring home buying season," NAHB Chairman Greg Ugalde said. In March, the index measuring current sales conditions rose from 66 to 68 points, while buyer traffic declined from 48 to 44. Lastly, expectations over the next six months rose from 68 to 71 points. The three-month moving averages for regional HMI scores show the Northeast rose five points from 43 to 48 points, the South also moved forward from 63 to 66, the West inched forward from 67 to 69 points and the Midwest slid one point backwards from 52 to 51 points. "In a healthy sign for the housing market, more builders are saying that lower price points are selling well, and this was reflected in the government's new home sales report released last week," NAHB Chief Economist Robert Dietz said. "Increased inventory of affordably priced homes – in markets where government policies support such construction – will enable more entry-level buyers to enter the market." “The skilled worker shortage, lack of buildable lots and stiff zoning restrictions in many major metro markets are among the challenges builders face as they strive to construct homes that can sell at affordable price points,” the report states. NOTE: The NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index gauges builder opinions of single-family home sales and expectations, asking for a rating of good, fair or poor. The scores are used to calculate a seasonally adjusted index with a rating of 50 or over indicating positive sentiment.

12 Startups Utilizing Blockchain Technology in New Ways

However, the technology behind these tokens, blockchain, has far more applications than just cryptocurrencies. Through a network of smart contracts that operate utilizing decentralized information on a ledger, blockchain is able to provide unmatched security and speed for data transfers. This means that blockchain technology has an application in nearly every industry where value is exchanged. A technological descendant of Ethereum, IOST is a blockchain with the purpose of serving as infrastructure for developers to create decentralized applications. ShipChain ShipChain is a freight and logistics platform built on blockchain. Nano Vision Nano Vision is empowering global citizens to step up and lend their efforts to furthering disease-prevention research and development. Equipped with a working product, Inveniam uses Decentralized Ledger Technology (DLT) and "regulated" contracts and tokens to transform structuring, clearing, custody and settlement of fixed-income instruments. It focuses on creating a decentralized social video ecosystem with a full economic cycle and rewards for creating, curating, viewing and sharing videos. Patron Patron is a global influencer marketing platform built with blockchain technology. Photochain Photochain is a decentralized stock photography platform built on the blockchain.

These are the best housing markets for first-time buyers

Purchasing the perfect home can be difficult, especially for those navigating the housing market for the first time. Luckily, a new report by Zillow reveals the country’s top housing markets for first-time buyers, measuring factors like home value, home appreciation, wealth and inventory. “Becoming a homeowner for the first time is easier in some markets than others – and the difference is not strictly about home prices, although they have a big impact on how long it takes to save a down payment,” Zillow writes. “Strong inventory and lower competition for listings also make a difference – as does the market outlook.” The video below highlights the top 5 most affordable rental markets, according to Zillow’s research: 5. Orlando, Florida. In this metro, the median home value is $237,100 and 21.3% of home listings have experienced a price cut. In this metro, the median home value is $217,500 and 15.9% of home listings have experienced a price cut. In this metro, the median home value is $264,900 and 20.9% of home listings have experienced a price cut. In this metro, the median home value is $277,900 and 23.9% of home listings have experienced a price cut. In this metro, the median home value is $213,600 and 24.8% of home listings have experienced a price cut.

These markets are hotbeds for luxury real estate

A new report by Coldwell Banker reveals where the country’s wealthiest individuals are buying properties, listing the top 5 “power markets” for luxury real estate. Coldwell defines power markets as areas that offer the lifestyle amenities, education, and culture that the uber-rich seek out. Key features of these markets include airport accessibility and a housing stock that lends itself to privacy, exclusivity and stellar views. A recent report by Redfin revealed that luxury home sales – or sales of homes priced above $2 million – fell 3.9% in the fourth quarter of 2018, marking the first time in more than two years that sales in this high-end market have fallen on an annual basis. But Charlie Young, Coldwell President and CEO, said that the median sold price has remained around $1.4 million, holding steady for the last 18 months, and that this is a key sign of stability. “When you take the long view, the luxury real estate picture is steady and stable.” Here are Coldwell’s top five power markets for buyers and sellers, which Young called hotbeds of luxury home sales at the million-dollar price point and higher: 2018 Top 5 luxury buyer power markets Maui, Hawaii Palm Beach, Florida Washington, D.C. Kauai, Hawaii Brooklyn, New York 2018 Top 5 luxury seller power markets LA Valley, California Detroit, Michigan Las Vegas, Nevada Boulder, Colorado Raleigh, North Carolina Coldwell’s report also revealed other trends in luxury real estate. High-end real estate in Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina, had the shortest median days on the market – just three – for single-family homes. For condos, Orlando, Florida, had the lowest median price per square foot at $156. Vail, Colorado, ranked the most expensive for condos with a median price of $1,629 per square foot. Finally, Staten Island, New York, was named the most evolving market, standing out for its notable value compared with the other four boroughs of New York City, as its proximity to Manhattan appeals to buyers.

Boost Your Facebook Post Engagement Using These 10 Tricks

The biggest question for a Facebook marketer is this: how do you get people engaged with your post? Thanks to an advertising method that Facebook calls Page Post Engagement adverts, you can keep up with all your followers and reach new ones at the same time. Ask Your Questions So you want to know more about your target audience? Enhance the Visual Appeal of Your Page A single relevant image can boost the engagement on your page more than a brilliant textual status update. B2C marketers place even greater importance on visual marketing when compared to B2B marketers. What are they doing differently to engage the Facebook audience? Ad links to important Facebook status updates in the updates you post on other social media. If you’re not getting them engaged enough, improve the quality before you start working on the quantity of posts. Try posting at a different time every day to see when you can get people engaged. But with a robust strategy and thoughtful audience analysis, it's possible to master your Facebook presence and keep the audience engaged.

5 Ways Blockchain Technology Will Change the Way We Do Business

The growing consensus among business leaders and entrepreneurs: The future of blockchain technology will be about a lot more than Bitcoin. Blockchain tech will impact every major area of business from accounting to operations, and there's evidence the revolution has begun. Here are five ways blockchain technology is disrupting the way we do business, with sometimes sweeping changes. Accounting is the textbook case study for a business field that stands to benefit from blockchain technology. Blockchain tech can more effectively manage all of the above. Advertising and marketing. Information technology and cybersecurity. Management and operations. The system allows professionals to take part in a new economy for photography, secure payment for licensing their work immediately when sold and offer their work on a secure blockchain platform. Blockchain technology is changing how companies do business in other staid industries, too.

These 3 U.S. cities make list of world’s 10 least affordable housing markets

Among the top 10, San Jose ranked No. 6 and San Francisco No. 8. on a list compiled and released this week by urban planning consulting firm Demographia. For the ninth consecutive year, Hong Kong claimed the top spot as the least affordable city in the world. By comparison, the median property price was 9.4 times the median household income in San Jose, 9.2 times in Los Angeles and 8.8 times in San Francisco. But, the U.S. is also home to all of the nine major affordable markets on Demographia’s list. Among the most affordable major housing markets in the world, Pittsburgh and Rochester, New York, were tied for No. 1, followed by Oklahoma City; Buffalo, New York; Cincinnati; Cleveland; St. Louis; Indianapolis and Detroit. Here are the least affordable housing markets in the world: (Cities are listed by median home price as a multiple of median income.) Hong Kong……….20.9 Vancouver…….….12.6 Sydney……….…...11.7 Melbourne…….....9.7 San Jose……...…9.4 Los Angeles……...9.2 Auckland………....9 San Francisco…...8.8 Honolulu………....8.6 London………......8.3 Toronto……...…...8.3

Four Easy Ways To Grow Your Business With LinkedIn

Target specific, professional audiences and decision makers. LinkedIn’s advertising capabilities allow you to use filters like industry, company size and job title to target specific types of individuals -- ideally, the individuals most likely to engage with your brand, service, product or message. LinkedIn recommends targeting audiences of at least 50,000 people for sponsored content and text ads, and at least 15,000 for sponsored InMail. With this, you can promote your articles, e-books and other forms of digital content to LinkedIn users directly. To get the most traction from you sponsored content, you should: • Use the targeting features, such as skills and job titles, to show your content to the types of professionals you want to reach, rather than a general audience. These ads allow you to increase the visibility of your company’s offers, which can (ultimately) lead to more business. This is a win for marketers since lead data is likely accurate and high quality, and it is a win for users because now they don’t have to spend the time filling out all the fields in a contact form. I’ve found LinkedIn to be an ideal place to source new employees for two reasons. The first reason is you’re able to reach the exact types of professionals you need by using the targeting options mentioned earlier, including job title, experience level and skill set. It’s an ever-growing network that’s helping all types of businesses win in their industries.

Generate Leads With Your Facebook Cover Photo

The Cover Photo Design Your cover photo, just like any other photo you post on Facebook, is clickable. This means users can click on the photo to expand it and view the complete image. ‘Click Here’ Sign There are two different ways to get fans to click on your cover photo. After designing your cover photo, add a “click here” sign to the image. The second way to let fans know to click your image to read the image’s description is to add a short CTA to the bottom of the image. Once a fan clicks on the image (on their desktop), the complete photo is shown and fans can see the CTA on the bottom requesting they click on the link to your landing page in your image’s description. This automatic feature is a great way to inform fans that you’ve changed your cover photo. While you’re busy creating the best cover photo image to drive traffic to your landing pages, let Homes.com’s Social Fuel experts handle all your Facebook advertising needs. Patty McNease is director of Marketing for Homes.com. For the latest real estate news and trends, bookmark RISMedia.com.

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Home Prices: The Difference 5 Years Makes

The economists at CoreLogic recently released a special report entitled, Evaluating the Housing Market Since the Great Recession. The goal of the report was to look at economic recovery since the Great Recession of December 2007 through June 2009. CoreLogic focused on appreciation from December 2012 to December 2017 to show how prices over the last five years have fared. After finally reaching bottom in 2011, home prices began a slow rise back to where we are now. Yet, many are still not back to pre-crash levels.” The map below was created to show the 5-year appreciation from December 2012 – December 2017 by state. Every quarter, Pulsenomics surveys a nationwide panel of over 100 economists, real estate experts, and investment and market strategists and asks them to project how residential home prices will appreciate over the next five years for their Home Price Expectation Survey (HPES). According to the December 2012 survey results, national homes prices were projected to increase cumulatively by 23.1% by December 2017. Data from the most recent HPES shows that home prices are expected to increase by 18.2% over the next 5 years. Some homeowners are now experiencing values even higher than before the Great Recession. Members: Sign in now to set up your Personalized Posts & start sharing today!