Tag Archives: Westchester NY Real Estate

Blue is the new cool kid on the backsplash block | Katonah NY Real Estate

Continuing our series on colorful backsplashes, we turn to blue. Blue kitchens are, er, red hot right now. After years of our being advised to not use blue in a kitchen (it’s thought to be appetite suppressing), cool shades of the color are showing up more and more in kitchen tools, accessories and, yes, backsplash materials. Here’s a small glimpse at some of the many blue backsplash options, along with a few tips for working the color into your own kitchen.

One of my favorite kitchen color trends is a palette consisting of black, white and shades of gray and watery blues. The blue glass subway tile backsplash here adds just the right punch of color. Mix in a wooden or natural cork floor for added warmth and texture.
Backsplash: 3- by 6-inch glass subway tiles in Frosted Ocean Grey from The Five Elements
Cobalt blue becomes fashionable every 15 years or so and is currently enjoying an upswing in popularity. But I would never advocate using a color for your backsplash just because it’s trending, as the expense and hassle of changing it once the trend passes is much too great. So if you aren’t sure you’d want this color in your kitchen for very long, paint it on a wall instead. It’ll be much easier (not to mention affordable) to swap out down the road.
If you truly love this color — ever-changing color trends aside — and want to use it for a backsplash, I say go for it. It’s close enough to the indigo color of blue jeans, which we are used to seeing accessorized with any and every color, that it functions as a neutral, giving you flexibility with the palette.
Backsplash: Classic field tile in Opal Blue from Heath Ceramics
It’s tough to compete for attention with this fantastic range, vent hood and stone arch but, boy, the backsplash sure does a good job of it. These beautiful Moroccan blue tiles are hand made in Casablanca. You can mix and match the patterns to create a unique backsplash in your own kitchen.
Backsplash: 4-inch square Fez tiles from Moorish Architectural Design
Navy blue is an elegant, dramatic backsplash color choice. It looks superb when paired with medium to dark wood tones as well as shades of orange, its complementary hue on the color wheel. Backsplash: 2- by 8-inch Debris Series field tile in Navy Gloss from Fireclay.

The Best of West Chelsea at the New AVA High Line | Pound Ridge NY Real Estate


488_AVAHighLine_SponsoredKitchen_10-30%20%281%29%20copy.pngAVA High Line, located alongside the High Line Park, offers some of West Chelsea’s best new rental apartments, plus a host of unique amenities, all within easy walking distance of the neighborhood’s cutting-edge galleries and restaurants. Opening in December—and now accepting lease applications—the pet-friendly AVA High Line includes studios, one- and two-bedroom apartments.

Residents can hang in the Chill Lounge or the nearby backyard fire pit. And inside the apartments, it gets even better, with features like sliding barn doors, stainless appliances and wood plank flooring. Don’t just take our word for it, check it out for yourself. Now renting for immediate move-ins. Visit AVA High Line at 525 West 28th Street (28th Street and 11th Avenue).>>

IMF sees risk in Israel’s housing marke | Katonah NY Homes

Israel’s low interest rate environment has the danger of further boosting housing prices, the International Monetary Fund said Monday, but the possibility of a quick adjustment in prices is also worrying.

In the concluding statement of its annual consultation, the IMF said that Israel was conducting proper monetary policy given the strength of the shekel and the global environment. “The low interest rate environment could, however, fuel further house price increases,” the report said.

“If house prices continue to rise, macroprudential measures, notably those which directly restrict the size and risk of mortgages, should be further tightened.” The IMF also recommended increasing property purchase tax for non-primary residences temporarily and, crucially, taking measures to boost the supply of housing, “including by implementing the recommendations of the Housing Committee.”

Despite the difficulties posed by the increased prices, however, the IMF also noted that a crash of prices posed an economic risk to Israel.

“A correction in the housing market and the associated feedback loops could undermine banks’ asset quality and profitability, and pose financial stability risks, the report said. “Despite progress in addressing concentration, risks concerning the financial viability of some large highly-leveraged corporates (holding companies and real estate and construction firms in particular) remain.”

All in all, the IMF mission found Israel’s economy to be growing moderately, projecting 2014 growth to fall somewhat to 3¼. The greatest risks posed to the economy are external – sluggish growth in the United States and Europe mean less demand for Israeli products abroad.




Floored’s interactive 3-D experiences may represent future of virtual home tours | Katonah NY Homes

Floored aims to transform the way agents communicate space to prospective buyers by replacing static images and constrictive videos with interactive 3-D experiences much like those offered in video games. Using a special scanner and proprietary software, Floored renders photographs and 3-D measurements into interactive models that let users move around spaces virtually, and even manipulate them.

“You can look behind you, you can see what’s around the corner, you can walk in from the front room,” said Floored CEO David Eisenberg.

The startup is steadily attracting more interest from real estate brokers, who Eisenberg said may leverage Floored models to attract more online visitors to listings. Lending credence to his claim, Floored was voted the best real estate tech startup at the Realogy FWD Innovation Summit earlier this year.

Eisenberg is scheduled to discuss the future of home virtual tours with other industry experts at the Real Estate Connect panel “Next-Gen Virtual Tours.”




– See more at: http://www.inman.com/2013/12/11/flooreds-interactive-3d-experiences-may-represent-future-of-virtual-home-tours/?utm_source=20131211&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=dailyheadlinespm#sthash.mtjzsrln.dpuf

Fixed Mortgage Rates Little Changed | Bedford Hills Real Estate

Freddie Mac  today released the results of its Primary Mortgage Market Survey(R) (PMMS®), showing average fixed mortgage changing little from the previous week amid light economic data releases.

News Facts

  • 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) averaged 4.42 percent with an average 0.7 point for the week ending December 12, 2013, down from last week when it averaged 4.46 percent. A year ago at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 3.32 percent.
  • 15-year FRM this week averaged 3.43 percent with an average 0.7 point, down from last week when it averaged 3.47 percent. A year ago at this time, the 15-year FRM averaged 2.66 percent.
  • 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) averaged 2.94 percent this week with an average 0.4 point, down from last week when it averaged 2.99 percent. A year ago, the 5-year ARM averaged 2.70 percent.
  • 1-year Treasury-indexed ARM averaged 2.51 percent this week with an average 0.4 point, down from last week when it averaged 2.59 percent. At this time last year, the 1-year ARM averaged 2.53 percent.

Average commitment rates should be reported along with average fees and points to reflect the total upfront cost of obtaining the mortgage. Visit the following links for the Regional and National Mortgage Rate Details and Definitions. Borrowers may still pay closing costs which are not included in the survey.

Quotes Attributed to Frank Nothaft, vice president and chief economist, Freddie Mac.

“Mortgage rates were little changed amid a light week of economic data releases. Of the few releases, total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 203,000 in November and the unemployment rate declined to 7.0 percent. Also, single family mortgage debt outstanding increased for the first time since 2008. This is a positive sign as it reflects that the pick-up in new purchase-money originations has offset loan paydowns and led to a net increase in principal outstanding.”

Freddie Mac was established by Congress in 1970 to provide liquidity, stability and affordability to the nation’s residential mortgage markets. Freddie Mac supports communities across the nation by providing mortgage capital to lenders. Today Freddie Mac is making home possible for one in.

Are foreclosure laws to blame for patchy US price gains? | Chappaqua NY Homes

Why have many of the local housing markets that were hit hardest during the bust — especially in California — bounced back so vigorously and quickly, with prices close to or exceeding where they were in 2005 and 2006?

And why have many others along the East Coast and in the Midwest had a slower move toward recovery, with sluggish sales and gradual increases in values?

Though multiple economic factors are at work, appraisal industry experts believe they have isolated a crucial and perhaps surprising answer: Real estate markets rebound much faster in areas where state law permits foreclosures to proceed quickly, moving homes with defaulted loans into new owners’ hands expeditiously, rather than allowing them to sit and deteriorate, tied up in court procedures for years. Prices of foreclosed homes in such areas typically are depressed and negatively affect values of neighboring properties, but they don’t remain so for lengthy periods because investors and other buyers swoop in and return them to residential use rapidly.

By contrast, in states where laws allow large numbers of homes in the process of foreclosure to remain in legal limbo, often empty and unsold, home-price recoveries are hindered because lenders are prevented from recovering and reselling the units to buyers who’ll fix them up and add value.

Pro Teck Valuation Services, a national appraisal firm based in Waltham, Mass., recently completed research in 30 major metropolitan areas that dramatically illustrates the point. All the fastest-rebounding markets in October — those with strong sales, price increases and low inventories of unsold houses — were located in so-called non-judicial states, where foreclosures can proceed without the intervention of courts.

All the worst-performing markets — where prices and sales have been less robust and there are excessive numbers of houses available but unsold — were located in judicial states, where post-default proceedings can stall foreclosure completions for two to three years or even more in some cases.




Tree-named streets: Which are most common? | Bedford Corners Homes

Danielle Coats lives on West Peachtree Street, one of 90 streets in Atlanta with “peachtree” or “peach tree” in the name. But don’t be fooled — there are no peach trees in sight.


The same holds true for many of the other “peachtree” streets in Atlanta, says Coats, a real estate agent with Redfin.


Streets with tree names, such as elm and pine, are reminiscent of an idyllic version of suburban America. They are also highly popular, appearing in numerous towns and cities across the country. We asked real estate website Trulia to examine real estate listings to determine where tree streets are likely to be found and which tree names tend to be most often used.









Listing Portals: What’s the Real End Game? | Chappaqua Real Estate

The ongoing contention regarding the ultimate motives of the major online listing portals recently came to a head during a rousing panel discussion at RISMedia’s Real Estate CEO Exchange earlier this fall. During the session – “The Data Debate: Is Disintermediation a Real Risk?” – the true intentions of the online portals were debated with the hopes of revealing whether the current players are in fact, broker and agent friendly.

Held at New York City’s prestigious Yale Club on Sept. 18, the panel was moderated by longtime industry veteran Ken Jenny, managing partner, Mediatise, LLC. Panelists included leading listing portal executives and brokerage representatives, including: Curt Beardsley, VP, Customer & Industry Development, MOVE/realtor.com®; David Charron, president and CEO, MRIS; Alon Chaver, vice president, Industry Services, Trulia; Bob Hale, president and CEO, Houston Association of REALTORS®; Greg Schwartz, chief revenue officer, Zillow; and Andy Woolley, vice president/GM, Homes.com.

Jenny opened the discussion in the spirit of unity. “It’s not my goal to push the two factions further apart, because the idea is to learn to work together,” he stated. “We just love to hate something in this business. When something comes along that does a great job of working with us, we’re highly suspicious of the motives. We want to know, ‘how can it hurt me?’”

According to Jenny, given the voluminous amounts of listing data flowing through today’s market, if real estate professionals only advertised their listings through traditional avenues, they would be doing a disservice to themselves and their consumers. Jenny asserted that the distribution solutions offered by online portals, when blended with a print strategy, provide brokers and agents with the right marketing strategy for listings.

Jenny launched the debate, therefore, by asking listing-portal executives the question on the minds of many brokers: “Are you a disintermediator?”

“I get up every morning with the same purpose,” responded Zillow’s Schwartz. “Our purpose is to help real estate consumers find homes they love and can afford by working with the world’s best agents. We do that by mining data and utilizing social community. I never woke up saying, ‘we’re going to get our brokerage license.’ We know how to write software and how to sell ads. That’s our thing. You all do something that is very hard, complicated and demanding. We think we amplify your efforts. That’s our purpose.”

Trulia’s Chaver put forth a similar assertion. “We are not disintermediators in any sense of the word,” he explained. “We have a very simple mission and that is to connect consumers with agents. We want to partner with brokers as they are transitioning from newspapers. We also want to take the looky-loos and teach them about real estate, so when they are ready, we can connect them with an agent. We never take FSBOs. We work with over 2,500 brokers. Consumers generally don’t know much about Trulia, and that’s because our intent is to accelerate and build the broker’s brand, not ours.”




NYC’s stalled construction sites drop 12 percent: report | South Salem Real Estate

The revival of development projects in Manhattan and Brooklyn resulted in a 12 percent year-over-year drop in the number of stalled construction sites in New York City, according to the latest report from the New York Building Congress. There were 610 stalled construction sites citywide in November 2013, compared to 690 in November 2012 and a peak of 709 in November 2010, according to data from the New York City Department of Buildings.

The number of stalled sites in Manhattan dropped 26 percent over the past 12 months – from 122 in November 2012 to 90 in November of this year. Reignited projects in Manhattan include the Alexico Group’s 56 Leonard Street , Silverstein Properties’ 30 Park Place and Elad Group’s 5 Franklin Place in Tribeca

Brooklyn leads the city with 267 suspended projects, though it too has seen a 17 percent year-over-year decline, according to the report.

“In our annual construction forecast report released in October, we estimated that residential construction spending will double between 2012 and 2015,” said New York Building Congress president Richard Anderson in a statement today. “That rosy outlook was based largely on the fact that a number of luxury developments, which were shelved during the great recession, have come roaring back to life.”