Just Listed brings you the latest news and information from the Twin Cities-area commercial and residential real estate market and beyond from veteran reporters Jim Buchta and Janet Moore.

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New FICO formula could revamp credit scores

Posted by: Jim Buchta Updated: August 11, 2014 - 10:39 AM

If you were interested in my Sunday story about easing mortgage credit standards, take note of this:  FICO is luanching a new a credit model called FICO Score 9, which will enable lenders to do a better job measuring a borrower's credit stability on everything from auto loans to home mortgages. Score 9 will be available to lenders this fall.

Here's what Jim Wehmann, executive vice president for Scores at FICO, had to say about these upcoming changes: “FICO Score 9 uses a more refined treatment of consumers with a limited credit history and those with accounts at collection agencies, so that lenders can grow their credit and loan portfolios more confidently...by applying innovative predictive modeling techniques on recent data to capture consumer credit behavior, FICO Score 9 will extend FICO’s leadership in providing the credit score that most accurately and fairly defines U.S. consumer credit risk.”

Here's a link to the full details.

World's most expensive house hits the market in Hong Kong

Posted by: Jim Buchta Updated: August 8, 2014 - 11:43 AM

At almost $23,000 per square feet, this house in Hong Kong is reputed to be the world's most expensive house on a per square foot basis. The property is in the Twelve Peaks subdivision in the exclusive Victoria's Peak neighborhood. At nearly $106 million, it's not the most expensive house on the market in the world - that distinction belongs to a house in London.

The house has 4,661 square feet, including four bedrooms, a private pool, garden, rooftop terrace and a two-car carport. To see the house, click here.

Home price gains now being driven by the jobs market

Posted by: Jim Buchta Updated: August 7, 2014 - 8:33 AM

Trulia's latest Trends report takes an interesting look at rents and house prices for the 100 largest metro areas in the nation. It shows some interesting shifts in the market. Namely, prices gains have moderated dramatically now that prices are being driven by wages rather than the rebound factor (investors and bargain shoppers). 

On the price side, for the first time in 26 months, no housing market saw an annual increase over 15 percent duing JulyOn the rental side of the equation, rents rose the most in markets that saw the strongest job growth. San Francisco was tops with a 14.3 percent gain, while the Twin Cities had a 3.4 percent gain - the 24th largest in the nation. 

Edina Realty breaks ground on its first new office building since '07

Posted by: Jim Buchta Updated: August 5, 2014 - 10:28 AM

Edina Realty broke ground this week on a new office building in Plymouth - the company's first new facility since 2007.

The 10,000 square-foot, one-level building will house about 100 agents and staff and is being built on a vacant lot at 9605 Schmidt Lake Rd. and will replace a facility that's at 4425 Highway 169 North. It'll serve agents that focus on markets ranging from Minneapolis to St. Michael.

Edina Realty, an affiliate of Berkshire Hathaway, has been remodeling, upgrading and moving its offices to better accommodate the changing ways agents do businesses - namely an increasing reliance on technology for an increasingly mobile sales force. The existing Plymouth building didn't lend itself to such a transformation and another suitable building wasn't available. used in the neighboring Maple Grove location, which relocated in Nov. 2013

Edina Realty CEO Greg Mason, president Barb Jandric, regional manager Terry McDonough and Plymouth office manager Jeff Shuman were on hand for the occassion.

“Our current facility is not ideal for the way agents do business today,” said Shuman. The offices will have several Apple TVs and fully outfitted private workspaces with computers, printers and phones. The building is being designed by Mohagen Hansen architects and is being constructed by Shingobee Builders; it'll be owned by United Properties. The Plymouth office is Edina Realty’s third largest and construction is expected to be completed by January 2015.

Housing construction in the Twin Cities revs up in July

Posted by: Jim Buchta Updated: July 31, 2014 - 1:09 PM

Home builders picked up the pace this month. Twin Cities builders were issued 443 permits to build 903 units, according to the Builders Association of the Twin Cities. Half of those units (a single permit can be issued to build multiple units) were rental apartments and other kinds of multi-family housing.

Both permits and the number of units were up considerably from last year, but the number of planned units was down slightly from the previous month. The report comes after a quieter June report, but such volatility is common from month to month.

Here's a link to the full report with all the numbers.

New details emerge on three key downtown Mpls housing developments

Posted by: Jim Buchta Updated: July 29, 2014 - 6:51 PM
The proposed 40-story tower by Alatus. Rendering by Humphreys & Partners Architects

The proposed 40-story tower by Alatus. Rendering by Humphreys & Partners Architects

It's going to be an interesting night at the Minneapolis City Planning Commission's Committee of the Whole meeting Thursday. Developers will be releasing a bevy of interesting new details on three high-profile housing developments planned for in and around downtown.

  • One of the juciest tidbits that will be discussed is the expansion of a previously discussed plan for a high-rise residential tower. Bob Lux and the team at Alatus will present plans to build a 40-story residential tower at the corner of Central Ave and 2nd St SE across the river from downtown Minneapolis. Original plans called for a 25-30-story tower. This one calls for a tower with about 325 "residential units" (Lux hasn't committed to apartments or condominiums) adjacent to the existing St. Anthony parking ramp. The existing Washburn-McReavy Funeral Home and St. Anthony Athletic Club would be demolished. An earlier plan called for retaining part of the Washburn-McReavy building and relocating it elsewhere on the site.
  • Curt Gunsbury and Robb Miller, the folks who brought you 7West and the Soltva apartments are whipping up plans for a 24-unit luxury condominium building next to the Garr Scott Lofts building at 602-606 N 1st St in the North Loop. Because the project is within the St. Anthony Falls and Warehouse historic districts and would require demolition of two buildings, the project requires feedback from the Heritage Preservation Commission (HPC) and the City Planning Commission (CPC). The 8-story building would have two levels of underground parking and would be only the second condominium building in Minneapolis to break ground. The project is being called the 602 Condominiums and would require a handful of conditional use permits and variances, including permission to increase the height of the building from 6 stories (84 feet) to 8 stories (90 feet).
  • Sherman and Associates is moving forward on its plans for the second phase of a project that was originally proposed in 2006. Instead of building a 103-unit condo building as originally proposed, Sherman plans to build a 122-unit, 12-story luxury apartment building with three levels of underground parking on the block bounded by Washington Avenue and 2nd Street South between 9th and 10th Avenues South next to the 64- unit Zenith condominium building and the Aloft Hotel.

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