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Jim Buchta

Reporter | Residential real estate
phone: 612-673-7376
Jim Buchta is the Star Tribune's residential real estate reporter, covering the Twin Cities housing market and its trends. He also contributes to the Star Tribune's Travel section.
Recent content from Jim Buchta
Lux decides on condos for 40-story tower at Washburn-McReavy site

Lux decides on condos for 40-story tower at Washburn-McReavy site

The decision comes after months of speculation about whether Lux would build apartments or condos on the site at 200 Central Av., now the location of a Washburn-McReavy funeral home.

Metro will get more affordable housing in 2016, but not enough

But number is still far short of metro-area demand, analysis says.
Residents start lining up Super Bowl, Ryder Cup renters

Residents start lining up Super Bowl, Ryder Cup renters

Across the metro area, ordinary homeowners are thinking about whether to cash in on the action of big-time events coming soon.
Hundreds of lots sit empty in N. Mpls. amid frenzy of demand

Hundreds of lots sit empty in N. Mpls. amid frenzy of demand

As housing demand soars, Minneapolis' North Side has many empty lots with few takers after teardowns are never rebuilt, contrasting starkly with booming construction in the rest of the city.
Twin Cities housing market in 2015 was best in a decade

Twin Cities housing market in 2015 was best in a decade

More homes changed hands in the Twin Cities last year than any other year in a decade, and the median price was just 4.5 percent below the all-time peak in 2006.
Minnesota Mortgage Association leader Brian Call on new rules, rising interest rates in 2016

Minnesota Mortgage Association leader Brian Call on new rules, rising interest rates in 2016

Brian Call, president of Rubicon Mortgage, steps into the role of president of the Minnesota Mortgage Association at a particularly challenging time for the industry.…
Homebuilding increased in the Twin Cities last year, but mostly for apartments

Homebuilding increased in the Twin Cities last year, but mostly for apartments

Twin Cities residential construction rose in 2015, fueled largely by rental demand
Twin Cities home prices posted a stronger year-over-year gain in October

Twin Cities home prices posted a stronger year-over-year gain in October

Twin Cities home prices continued to gain strength in October, according to data released Tuesday that underscored the likelihood that the market’s winter slowdown would…
At the top of Twin Cities real estate market, the selling isn't easy

At the top of Twin Cities real estate market, the selling isn't easy

At the market's exclusive level, houses that couldn't be replicated today are sitting unsold as well-to-do buyers seek technology over turrets and perfection over patina.
Warm winter means Twin Cities landlords are saving money (so far)

Warm winter means Twin Cities landlords are saving money (so far)

The savings, landlords say, will help them cope with double-digit increases in property assessments and a tight labor market that has driven up wages.
Research, speed pay off for architects putting stamp on Twin Cities

Research, speed pay off for architects putting stamp on Twin Cities

Elness Swenson Graham Architects Inc., simply called ESG, dominates the Twin Cities market in the design of new housing and hotels, and they shepherded dozens of difficult projects in historic districts in recent years.
Huge November for Twin Cities home sales

Huge November for Twin Cities home sales

Mild weather and low (for now) mortgage rates mean Twin Cities boom year is closing strong.
Apartment projects bring St. Anthony Park its 1st new housing in years

Apartment projects bring St. Anthony Park its 1st new housing in years

Construction to start soon on a 25-unit building, with a 50-unit senior cooperative also planned.

Hans Hagen, longtime Twin Cities homebuilder, sells company to Ohio-based M/I Homes

Ohio-based M/I Homes enters the market with the acquisition of Hans Hagen's namesake firm.
Twin Cities software developer starts StickyApps to enable photographers to become website developers

Twin Cities software developer starts StickyApps to enable photographers to become website developers

Local techie aids photographers in supplementing their income by becoming website builders

Weidner is interested in St. Louis Park apartment complex that's not yet built

Apartment giant has been on a Twin Cities property binge.
Ramsey County adoptions knit new families together

Ramsey County adoptions knit new families together

Judges, parents and 31 children celebrated as Ramsey County makes placements permanent.
Twin Cities home sales rose 3.3 percent in October

Twin Cities home sales rose 3.3 percent in October

Buyers outnumbered them in October, giving prices a boost and limiting total listings
HomeServices of America acquired Dallas-based Allie Beth Allman & Associates

HomeServices of America acquired Dallas-based Allie Beth Allman & Associates

Edina Realty's parent acquired a Dallas brokerage with strength in the high end of the market.

Apartment vacancy rates in the Twin Cities down slightly despite thousands of new units

Thousands of new rental apartments hit the market in the Twin Cities this year, but shoppers still have limited options and are facing the biggest…
'Underwater' home sellers are obstacle in Twin Cities market

'Underwater' home sellers are obstacle in Twin Cities market

Many homeowners don't have enough to cover cost of moving. It's one of the last big issues to stymie the region's housing market — and its impact is broad.
Developer Kelly Doran shifts his attention to the suburbs

Developer Kelly Doran shifts his attention to the suburbs

After selling upscale apartments built near the U, developer Kelly Doran has new projects in north and west suburbs.
Obituary: Becca Vargo Daggett, researcher and community activist

Obituary: Becca Vargo Daggett, researcher and community activist

Becca Vargo Daggett was happiest when she felt she was making a difference, and she wasn’t shy about getting involved. “She’d be the one in…
Pillsbury's Best Flour sign in Minneapolis reinstalled, relit

Pillsbury's Best Flour sign in Minneapolis reinstalled, relit

Atop the Pillsbury A-Mill complex along the Mississippi River, a crane has been replacing the letters one by one, like a big game of Scrabble.
Buck Hill's founding family sells landmark ski facility

Buck Hill's founding family sells landmark ski facility

The new owners say they plan to turn the Burnsville ski operation into "a year-round, world-class sport training facility," including summer snowboarding.
Minnesota lost 5,700 jobs in Sept., but jobless rate also fell

Minnesota lost 5,700 jobs in Sept., but jobless rate also fell

The losses are marginal in a state where there are 3 million jobs, but they are another sign of slowing performance by one of the strongest employment markets in the country.
Twin Cities housing market during September was the best in a decade

Twin Cities housing market during September was the best in a decade

Sellers still have the upper hand and the number of pending sales is a signal the fourth quarter will also be strong.
Twin Cities renters get new options in downtown Minneapolis and on an island in Minnetonka

Twin Cities renters get new options in downtown Minneapolis and on an island in Minnetonka

Twin Cities apartment complexes offer a contrast in amenities.

Minneapolis Area Association of Realtors sells 10K research unit to ShowingTime of Chicago

The research business grew out of needs that local real estate agents had during the recession.
Renters Warehouse bought by investment group

Renters Warehouse bought by investment group

Rental services company sold to local investor group with plans to expand
Elsey Partners refines plans for arrow-shaped apartment building near U of M

Elsey Partners refines plans for arrow-shaped apartment building near U of M

A Kansas developer has refined its plans for a building it hopes will serve an unmet need near the U.
Developer Jeff Schoenwetter puts final touches on Wayzata condo project

Developer Jeff Schoenwetter puts final touches on Wayzata condo project

Longtime Twin Cities developer Jeff Schoenwetter plans to build boutique condominiums called Meyer Place at Ferndale on the northern shore of Lake Minnetonka. Plans are…
Twin Cities real estate market tilted toward sellers last month

Twin Cities real estate market tilted toward sellers last month

The waning days of summer are typically a time for browsing, but not this year. With house listings in short supply, sellers are in the driver's seat and buyers are on edge.

Maplewood title company settles kickback investigation of its boat cruise events

TitleSmart maintains events were for networking, not to solicit business referrals.
Real estate notebook: Local builders see rise in both houses and apartments in August

Real estate notebook: Local builders see rise in both houses and apartments in August

A raft of new apartments and an uptick in single-family homes gave Twin Cities homebuilders a boost last month. During the four-week period ended Aug.…
DLC plans luxury apartments for Edina

DLC plans luxury apartments for Edina

A Florida developer wants to make a small corner of Edina more pedestrian-friendly with its apartment proposal.
With rents rising, more people in the Twin Cities looking to buy

With rents rising, more people in the Twin Cities looking to buy

As July home sales climbed 17 percent, data also showed renters are paying near record levels of their income for apartments.
394-unit apartment building near MOA among biggest in metro

394-unit apartment building near MOA among biggest in metro

The project, called IndiGO, shows a shift from urban to suburban rentals.

New players enter real estate market

We’ve had a couple of new openings in the Twin Cities in recent days. David Weekley Homes, a big homebuilder based in Houston, Texas, has…
Obituaries: Ursula and Jerry Choromanski, founders of New Hope care center

Obituaries: Ursula and Jerry Choromanski, founders of New Hope care center

The couple, who died a week apart, thrived on work, family, faith.

Luther Seminary, Ecumen plan to build senior housing on St. Anthony Park campus

As residential student numbers ebbed, Luther sought ways to use land.
Apartment boom in Twin Cities begins a shift to the suburbs

Apartment boom in Twin Cities begins a shift to the suburbs

The Twin Cities apartment boom, which is transforming Minneapolis and St. Paul, is now thundering into the suburbs, where rentals are full and there's plenty of developable land.
New Minneapolis apartments fuse energy efficiency with style, affordability

New Minneapolis apartments fuse energy efficiency with style, affordability

New apartments in Minneapolis aim to fuse energy efficiency with style, affordability
Saunders jumps quickly into equity crowdfunding

Saunders jumps quickly into equity crowdfunding

The former broker aims to turn regular Minnesotans into real estate investors.
Twin Cities homes sold at a record pace last month

Twin Cities homes sold at a record pace last month

  In the midst of the peak shopping season, houses in the Twin Cities metro sold at a record pace in June. Both closed and…

Developer, neighbors review new design for U.S. Bank site

Plans aim for an urban look for the U.S. Bank site.
Housing goes up in North Loop of Mpls. for less

Housing goes up in North Loop of Mpls. for less

Affordable Cameron apartments trade on North Loop's pre-trendy roots.
3rd Home offers an upscale vacation option for people with more houses than time

3rd Home offers an upscale vacation option for people with more houses than time

Members must have an extra house worth more than $500,000 and be screened to join. When they travel, they pay a stipend that ranges from $395 to $995 per week to stay in another member's home.
Nye's owners push closing date into 2016; neighborhood group pulls support for makeover

Nye's owners push closing date into 2016; neighborhood group pulls support for makeover

The owners of Nye's will keep seeing customers through the fall and the Christmas holidays.
New home permits rose 15 percent in Twin Cities this month

New home permits rose 15 percent in Twin Cities this month

Housing construction in the Twin Cities metro continues its seesaw recovery.
Developer breaks ground on $54M apartment complex on Green Line

Developer breaks ground on $54M apartment complex on Green Line

On Minneapolis-St. Paul border, apartment project aims at light-rail commuters
United Properties hits hurdles for Nicollet Hotel block makeover

United Properties hits hurdles for Nicollet Hotel block makeover

United Properties must find new partners for high-profile development

Lennar Multifamily plans 20-story tower on Superior Plating site

Lennar Multifamily paid $13.7 million for Superior Plating site.
Twin Cities home sales rose nearly 20% in May

Twin Cities home sales rose nearly 20% in May

Sellers are in the driver's seat as May pending sales rose nearly 20 percent

Real estate notebook: The Walkway in Uptown is sold

There’s been another big apartment sale in Minneapolis. It’s the Walkway, a luxury building in Uptown with a glass-bottom hot tub cantilevered over busy Lake…
Between Whole Foods and Fed, a plan for homes on Hennepin Av.

Between Whole Foods and Fed, a plan for homes on Hennepin Av.

Apartments and townhouses proposed for mostly undeveloped downtown block between Whole Foods and the Federal Reserve.
Sale of downtown Mpls. condo fetches a record $1,200 per square foot

Sale of downtown Mpls. condo fetches a record $1,200 per square foot

The sale of a downtown property set a record for price per square foot.
Apartment giant Weidner to set up regional office in Twin Cities

Apartment giant Weidner to set up regional office in Twin Cities

The Seattle company, which paid a record price for a Twin Cities apartment last fall, bought a Minnetonka building for a regional office.
U.S. housing agency wants Minnesota builders to watch for termites

U.S. housing agency wants Minnesota builders to watch for termites

Builders and pest experts say insects pose little risk in state.
Just Listed: Graves plans a condo in Uptown

Just Listed: Graves plans a condo in Uptown

Graves Hospitality plans to build a luxury, nine-unit condominium building at the corner of W. 31st Street and Holmes Avenue in south Minneapolis. The proposed…

Real Estate Notebook: It was 'top-off' week in Minneapolis

It was a milestone week for several downtown Minneapolis construction projects. On Tuesday morning, crews set the highest beam on the two 17-story towers being…
$1 million land gift helps Habitat for Humanity build townhouses in Hugo

$1 million land gift helps Habitat for Humanity build townhouses in Hugo

The nonprofit is providing home buyers with rare affordable townhouses in a Twin Cities suburb.

Housing construction in the Twin Cities metro fails to exceed 2014

Most of the permitted units in the metro area in May were single-family homes in the suburbs.
Just Listed: Work underway on Mill District project

Just Listed: Work underway on Mill District project

After years of planning, construction is underway on a mixed-use project in the Minneapolis Mill District that will be the first downtown to combine income-restricted…
Real estate notebook: Developers consider Stadium Village tower project, sources say

Real estate notebook: Developers consider Stadium Village tower project, sources say

A busy corner in Stadium Village could become the site of the city’s next new tower. A pair of veteran Twin Cities developers have been…

Minneapolis launches unprecedented program for city home buyers

A new program is an effort to promote homeownership among minorities.

$200 million federal settlement over bank's mortgage practices includes Twin Cities

HUD said Wisconsin-based bank discriminated in its mortgage lending in Minnesota, other states.
Proposal for Superior Plating site moves forward

Proposal for Superior Plating site moves forward

Plans for an 20-story project on Superior Plating site move forward
Minnesota lakeshore market expected to show big gains in 2015

Minnesota lakeshore market expected to show big gains in 2015

Memorial Day is called the unofficial start of summer, but it’s also the kickoff to the cabin shopping season. Bloomington-based brokers Dave Gooden and Cameron…
Twin Cities home supply is still tight as sales near decade's peak

Twin Cities home supply is still tight as sales near decade's peak

Home buyers in the Twin Cities are facing a vexing situation: There are thousands of more listings compared with a year ago, but the number of options is shrinking.
Twin Cities home sales surge due to low rates, higher home prices

Twin Cities home sales surge due to low rates, higher home prices

The housing market in the Twin Cities had its best month in nearly a decade, boosting confidence in the recovery — and prices.
University of Minnesota team designs award-winning house that uses little or no energy

University of Minnesota team designs award-winning house that uses little or no energy

A U of M team won a national competition on energy-efficient home design.
Housing construction in the Twin Cities not as brisk as hoped

Housing construction in the Twin Cities not as brisk as hoped

Still homebuilders are optimistic about the market.
Just Listed: Comparing the Twin Cities and U.S. housing markets

Just Listed: Comparing the Twin Cities and U.S. housing markets

House prices in the Twin Cities haven’t been rising at the same pace as the national average — 3.1 percent in the Twin Cities during…
Obituary: Donna Rae Johnson, 85, longtime attorney and rights advocate

Obituary: Donna Rae Johnson, 85, longtime attorney and rights advocate

When Donna Rae (Lambert) Johnson and her husband, a sergeant, were living just outside Augusta, Ga., in the 1950s, they loved to entertain friends of…
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