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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
Luxury apartments planned on former Best Buy site in Edina

Luxury apartments planned on former Best Buy site in Edina

The project is the latest residential complex near Southdale Center.
First-ring suburbs driving big gains in home real estate

First-ring suburbs driving big gains in home real estate

By several measures, suburbs like Falcon Heights, Richfield and Edina are leading the region's residential real estate market.
Sunday conversation with John Smaby of Edina Realty and National Association of Realtors

Sunday conversation with John Smaby of Edina Realty and National Association of Realtors

John Smaby, a longtime sales manager for Twin Cities-based Edina Realty, was recently elected to the top post at the National Association of Realtors. In…
Twin Cities home sales fell in July as shortage of properties catches up to market

Twin Cities home sales fell in July as shortage of properties catches up to market

Fewer listings limited opportunities but boosted prices and speed of sales.

Minnesota tied with four other states for nation's lowest foreclosure rate

Minnesota homeowners appear to be in much better financial shape than the average homeowner around the rest of the country. The foreclosure rate in the…

Fourth half-built apartment building is also being revamped

The same two Minnesota-Illinois businesses are at the heart of each case and are declining to comment.
Lumber removal begins at three half-built apartment projects

Lumber removal begins at three half-built apartment projects

Builders are starting to point fingers in court, too.
Condo sale record in Mpls. highlights action for luxury properties

Condo sale record in Mpls. highlights action for luxury properties

A condo in the Mill District sold for more than $1,400 per square foot
Condo sale record in Minneapolis highlights the action for luxury properties

Condo sale record in Minneapolis highlights the action for luxury properties

A condo in the Mill District sold for more than $1,400 per square foot
There's a free building in Minneapolis, with a catch

There's a free building in Minneapolis, with a catch

The building sits square in the middle of where Alatus, a Twin Cities-based developer, wants to build a 40-story condo tower at 200 Central Av. SE. Though it was once the St. Anthony Commercial Club, the 1929 building is better known for housing a Washburn-McReavy funeral home.
Twin Cities housing market isn't booming for pricier homes

Twin Cities housing market isn't booming for pricier homes

Those from $350,000 and higher attract a smaller pool of buyers, stay on the market longer and gain value at a slower rate.
New home construction permits rose slightly in Twin Cities this month

New home construction permits rose slightly in Twin Cities this month

Units built, permits issued in the Twin Cities were up in July, showing gains "at a slow pace."
Golden Valley apartment contractor fired over inferior lumber

Golden Valley apartment contractor fired over inferior lumber

The developer of one of four Twin Cities apartment buildings suspected of being built with lumber that doesn't meet state building codes has fired its general contractor.
Builder to replace substandard lumber in Twin Cities apartments

Builder to replace substandard lumber in Twin Cities apartments

Union prevails in dispute over extensive use of framing wood suspected of being below code.
Twin Cities home prices reach all-time high, a decade after they last did

Twin Cities home prices reach all-time high, a decade after they last did

Twin Cities home prices reached an all-time high last month, precisely a decade after they last peaked. The median price of all closings was $242,000…
Whiteboard: Home ownership nonprofit markets finance app

Whiteboard: Home ownership nonprofit markets finance app

Nonprofit Homeownership Preservation Foundation created BluePrint to help users manage personal savings and debts
Between the airport and MOA, a new phase of development kicks off

Between the airport and MOA, a new phase of development kicks off

Plans are underway for the third phase of a massive redevelopment effort in Bloomington not far from the Mall of America and Minneapolis-St. Paul International…
Sm+RT works on first factory-built house in Minneapolis

Sm+RT works on first factory-built house in Minneapolis

In May, Thor Construction CEO Ravi Norman and two colleagues announced a plan to help fill a gaping hole in the Twin Cities housing market.…
Conversions are cornerstone of St. Paul construction boom

Conversions are cornerstone of St. Paul construction boom

Stately old downtown office buildings are getting new residential roles
Developer plans to build 600-700 apartments in St. Anthony Park

Developer plans to build 600-700 apartments in St. Anthony Park

Developer buys 13.3-acre industrial site for project with 600 to 700 apartments.
New home construction accelerated sharply in June in Twin Cities

New home construction accelerated sharply in June in Twin Cities

Residential construction permits rise, with nearly all for single-family houses.
To get an edge on a home deal, buyers write personal letters

To get an edge on a home deal, buyers write personal letters

Jason Stockwell, a real estate agent, said a well-crafted letter can be so powerful that some sellers take a lower offer. "Some sellers cry," Stockwell said.

HomeServices buys Colorado brokerage with luxury focus

Twin Cities-based HomeServices buys Colorado brokerage.
$18.3M Eagan apartment sale adds to signs of record pace

$18.3M Eagan apartment sale adds to signs of record pace

An entity related to Manhattan-based Abacus Capital paid $18.3 million in cash for the 188-unit Colonial Village complex on Silver Bell Road in Eagan.
Twin Cities house prices near all-time high as May sales climbed

Twin Cities house prices near all-time high as May sales climbed

Last month was the second-highest median price in the Twin Cities.
Frank Lloyd Wright house in St. Louis Park on the market for first time ever

Frank Lloyd Wright house in St. Louis Park on the market for first time ever

Home designed by master architect has been with original owners for nearly 60 years
A turn nears in the building frenzy of Twin Cities apartments

A turn nears in the building frenzy of Twin Cities apartments

Developers are about to tap the brakes on new construction after delivering a near-record number of new rentals this year.
40-story condo tower for St. Anthony Falls area gets zoning panel OK

40-story condo tower for St. Anthony Falls area gets zoning panel OK

Plan will go to Mpls. City Council after panel overturns heritage group.
New apartment complex in St. Anthony Park features 'micro' units

New apartment complex in St. Anthony Park features 'micro' units

Planned St. Anthony Park building would feature small, lower-rent spaces.
Most Twin Cities home sellers getting more money than they ask for

Most Twin Cities home sellers getting more money than they ask for

An unbalanced market in which house hunters outnumber listings is forcing buyers to bid aggressively, or lose out.
What does the future hold for downtown living in Minneapolis?

What does the future hold for downtown living in Minneapolis?

With a condo tower nearing completion and two in the final planning stages, what comes next downtown in a city where commercial construction topped $1 billion for four straight years?
Homebuilding busts out in Twin Cities in May

Homebuilding busts out in Twin Cities in May

It was the strongest May in the metro in years, and, in a shift, houses outnumbered apartments.
Lake home sales on upswing, with deals to be had as prices are soft

Lake home sales on upswing, with deals to be had as prices are soft

Shifting demographics and postrecession caution have kept the lakeshore market far more balanced between buyers and sellers.
New company building modular homes on vacant lots in north Mpls.

New company building modular homes on vacant lots in north Mpls.

Twin Cities start-up seeks to fill hundreds of vacant lots in north Minneapolis — remnants of the city's predatory lending and foreclosure crisis — with the factory-built homes.
Stanton's latest downtown condo project clears hurdle

Stanton's latest downtown condo project clears hurdle

Coon Rapids developer Jim Stanton received approval this week from the Minneapolis Planning Commission for his biggest downtown condo project yet: the Legacy, a 374-unit…
Ian Peterson hopes for welcome market as Weekley expands to Twin Cities

Ian Peterson hopes for welcome market as Weekley expands to Twin Cities

When Texas-based homebuilder David Weekley decided to expand to the Twin Cities, it tapped industry veteran Ian Peterson.

HomeServices converts another franchisee

For the second time in a week, Twin Cities-based HomeServices of America Inc., a Berkshire Hathaway affiliate and parent company of Edina Realty, bought one…
Strong home sales market grew even tighter in Twin Cities during April

Strong home sales market grew even tighter in Twin Cities during April

At same time, metro inventory shrinks, putting pressure on both sides of the deal.
Mortgage rates keep falling, inviting more buyers to a crowded market

Mortgage rates keep falling, inviting more buyers to a crowded market

The latest drop followed disappointing economic data

Downtown Minneapolis promoters expand apartment tour

Boosters are expanding their efforts to promote living in downtown Minneapolis. Explore Downtown Living is becoming a twice-a-year apartment tour, an urban version of the…

HomeServices adds Oregon brokerage to its portfolio

  Twin Cities-based HomeServices of America Inc. is expanding in the Pacific Northwest with the purchase of one of its franchisees, one that already has…
Obituary: Bill Morrissey, hotelier and St. Paul promoter

Obituary: Bill Morrissey, hotelier and St. Paul promoter

From the beginning, Bill Morrissey was destined to work in the hospitality industry. He was born in Minneapolis and raised in Bloomington, where his first…
Preservation Commission says no to proposed 40-story Mpls. condo tower

Preservation Commission says no to proposed 40-story Mpls. condo tower

At a standing-room-only meeting, the Minneapolis Heritage Preservation Commission on Tuesday voted in favor of allowing a developer to demolish two buildings but denied a…
In Twin Cities, as demand rises, so do entry-level homes

In Twin Cities, as demand rises, so do entry-level homes

As first-time buyers in the Twin Cities slug it out over a paltry number of listings, homebuilders are scrambling to help satisfy that demand.

Twin Cities new-home permits jump in April

Homebuilders in the Twin Cities heartened by "steady growth" in 2016.
Cray becomes first tenant at Mall of America office tower

Cray becomes first tenant at Mall of America office tower

The supercomputing company is leaving downtown St. Paul.
In Edina, Opus plans apartments on site of former UnitedHealth building

In Edina, Opus plans apartments on site of former UnitedHealth building

One of the largest developers in the Twin Cities has floated a plan to develop apartments in a suburban office park. Opus Development Co. wants…
Schafer Richardson heads to St. Paul, plans apartments near Xcel Energy Center

Schafer Richardson heads to St. Paul, plans apartments near Xcel Energy Center

Apartment venture would be the Mpls. firm's first in capital.
In tight housing market, some sellers add a twist

In tight housing market, some sellers add a twist

Growing number won't sell without home lined up.
Even in a hot real estate market, home sellers need to spruce up

Even in a hot real estate market, home sellers need to spruce up

Do the harvest gold appliances just have to go? What about the country oak cabinets? Time to gut the entire kitchen?With the start of the…

Executive changes at Steven Scott, MSR Design and HomeServices

Barbara Halverson is retiring after 44 years with Steven Scott Management, Inc., most recently as chief executive and president of the St. Louis Park-based rental…
Big projects usher in new era for old area of Mpls., with worries

Big projects usher in new era for old area of Mpls., with worries

Major developments will bring hundreds of new apartments to a historic neighborhood just across the river from downtown Minneapolis. But some worry that they will alter the area's character and create the same hassles that are found downtown.
Twin Cities deals continue to rise as home inventory tightens

Twin Cities deals continue to rise as home inventory tightens

There was no shortage of home buyers in the Twin Cities last month, but sellers were scarce. Median prices also rose as sellers continue to have an advantage over buyers.
Minneapolis panel gives initial approval to Elliot Park apartment project

Minneapolis panel gives initial approval to Elliot Park apartment project

A Minneapolis apartment development — the first in the city for a high-profile national developer — got the thumbs up from the Minneapolis Planning Commission…
Minnesota's foreclosure rate is now one of the nation's lowest

Minnesota's foreclosure rate is now one of the nation's lowest

It's another sign of the state's strong housing market.
Minneapolis 40-story condo tower proposal is delayed by petition

Minneapolis 40-story condo tower proposal is delayed by petition

A proposal to build a 40-story condo tower across the river from downtown Minneapolis was scheduled to be reviewed by the Minneapolis Heritage Preservation Commission…

Shift accelerates from apartments to houses in Twin Cities construction

As apartment construction in the Twin Cities calms, house construction is gaining steam, the latest report from the Builders Association of the Twin Cities shows.…

Just Listed: Dominium begins building senior apartments in Prior Lake

Dominium begins construction of Prior Lake senior apartment complex Construction started this week on a low-income senior housing complex that will replace a strip mall…
Apartment tower planned for the U aims for the professionals, too

Apartment tower planned for the U aims for the professionals, too

Developer says he's aiming to "appeal to everyone."
Development project is a test of housing strength in N. Mpls.

Development project is a test of housing strength in N. Mpls.

Bob Lux is confident buyers will pay $299,000 for a new, four-bedroom house with a creek view, granite counters and an open floor plan in north Minneapolis.

HomeServices of America hires web veteran Alon Chaver as chief information officer

HomeServices of America said Thursday it hired Alon Chaver, a former vice president at Trulia, as chief information officer, a new position at the firm.…
Excelsior & Grand apartment and retail sell for record $97.5 million

Excelsior & Grand apartment and retail sell for record $97.5 million

The deal represents the highest price paid for a Twin Cities suburban housing project.
Home sales rose 6.7 percent in Twin Cities last month

Home sales rose 6.7 percent in Twin Cities last month

The kickoff to the spring housing market in the Twin Cities was unseasonably strong — especially for sellers. Inventory is very tight, but agents expect more sellers to emerge this month.

HomeServices of America expands insurance business with acquisition of PCG Agencies

The deal for St. Paul-based PCG will help HomeServices expand its insurance offerings nationwide.
Starter homes are in short supply across the Twin Cities

Starter homes are in short supply across the Twin Cities

Entry-level houses are the one big void in metro's residential rebound.

Apartment market continues to absorb new units

Despite thousands of new apartments in the Twin Cities metro area, the rental market has remained relatively stable, according to a year-end report released this…
New Lake of the Isles house to rise where city's largest once stood

New Lake of the Isles house to rise where city's largest once stood

The site once held the Gates Mansion. At 38,000 square feet, it was the largest house ever built in Minneapolis. The new structure will be 8,800 square feet.
Scandia man refines and reformulates until instant caulk product works

Scandia man refines and reformulates until instant caulk product works

Despite frustration and tragedy, a Scandia builder kept working on a distinctive caulk and finally broke through on QVC.

Twin Cities housing, commercial construction off to slower start this year

Two early-year reports showed drop-offs in residential and nonresidential building permits.
Minnesota foreclosures fell in 2015 to lowest level since 2005

Minnesota foreclosures fell in 2015 to lowest level since 2005

Rising home prices and a stable economy are keeping mortgage defaults at bay in Minnesota. The foreclosure rate statewide last year fell 13 percent to…
Experiment in upscale apartments comes to Lake Calhoun area

Experiment in upscale apartments comes to Lake Calhoun area

Lakeside living offers five-star custom-home-like amenities in larger rentals -- for a price.
January 2015: Twin Cities laundry service adds high-tech twist

January 2015: Twin Cities laundry service adds high-tech twist

Even the laundry business is being transformed by smartphones, software and entrepreneurs like Jeff Gardner.
Twin Cities home sales remained strong in January but pinched by tight supply

Twin Cities home sales remained strong in January but pinched by tight supply

Mortgage rates are still very low, but a continued dearth of listings is having a big impact on the market.
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.
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