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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
A plan for homes on Hennepin Av. in downtown Minneapolis

A plan for homes on Hennepin Av. in downtown Minneapolis

Apartments and townhouses proposed for mostly undeveloped downtown block between Whole Foods and the Federal Reserve.
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…
Keller-Williams Realty: Agents of change

Keller-Williams Realty: Agents of change

In a tough economy, the realty company ranks as the top Twin Cities workplace. Why? People come first.
Real Estate Notebook: Custom tours set for new downtown Minneapolis apartments

Real Estate Notebook: Custom tours set for new downtown Minneapolis apartments

The Downtown Council, eager for more people to see and consider apartments in downtown Minneapolis, is staging the Explore Downtown Living event on May 16…
Developer revives idea for penthouse condos in St. Paul

Developer revives idea for penthouse condos in St. Paul

Developer plans to build three condos atop downtown’s Lowry Building
Plymouth senior housing project to offer on-site services

Plymouth senior housing project to offer on-site services

Plymouth project to offer range of a la carte services on site.
Twin Cities architecture firm takes cues from countryside to expand business

Twin Cities architecture firm takes cues from countryside to expand business

Two Wayzata architects hope to expand their business with an unconventional approach to the residential design process.
Developer scraps plans for boutique North Loop Minneapolis condo project

Developer scraps plans for boutique North Loop Minneapolis condo project

They said the demand for luxury condos at 602 North First wasn’t where it needed to be.
You can buy a Lake Minnetonka house designed by Frank Lloyd Wright's protégé

You can buy a Lake Minnetonka house designed by Frank Lloyd Wright's protégé

And you can have it for $2.295 million.
Twin Cities home sales soar 30% in March, set up strong spring

Twin Cities home sales soar 30% in March, set up strong spring

Home sales in the Twin Cities surged last month, setting the stage for the best spring market since the housing crash in 2008. But supply remains low, with 1 in 7 owners still owing more than their house is worth.
280,000-pound piece of Minneapolis skyway to house a Brainerd family

280,000-pound piece of Minneapolis skyway to house a Brainerd family

The structure will become a Brainerd family’s home after a brief stay as an art display.
Lake Minnetonka house has Prairie-style pedigree

Lake Minnetonka house has Prairie-style pedigree

This Lake Minnetonka house was designed by Frank Lloyd Wright's chief draftsman. You can have it for $2.295 million.

RJM Construction buys itself back from NorthMarq Companies

Independence will give more options to construction firm.
Landmark neon signs glow again in Twin Cities

Landmark neon signs glow again in Twin Cities

New funding sources and new technology make it possible to relight some of the Twin Cities' most iconic neon signs.
Despite oil woes, Bakken still a draw for Twin Cities developers

Despite oil woes, Bakken still a draw for Twin Cities developers

Domestic oil production has stalled dramatically and the oil slump has put some projects on hold, but Twin Cities developers remain upbeat about the region.
Lennar, Ryland led homebuilding in metro area last year

Lennar, Ryland led homebuilding in metro area last year

The builder’s metro-area revenue is well below its peak, but the company has been the top builder in the Twin Cities for nearly a decade.
New wave of real estate projects emerges near U campus

New wave of real estate projects emerges near U campus

More student housing and a hotel are in the planning stages.
South Minneapolis apartment project would break design mold

South Minneapolis apartment project would break design mold

A pair of New York architects hope to build an apartment building in south Minneapolis where families of all sizes could live and work together, a striking contrast to the design of many new apartment buildings.
Twin Cities housing market shakes off the 2014 slump

Twin Cities housing market shakes off the 2014 slump

Metro market picked up in February with tight inventory and fierce competition

March 5: Developer unveils final plans for apartments to replace Tryg's Restaurant in Uptown

A new restaurant will join a 164-unit luxury apartment building at the Minneapolis site.
$70 million mixed-use project planned for the North Loop

$70 million mixed-use project planned for the North Loop

The apartments on Washington Av. would include public space.
Minneapolis' 222 Hennepin gets a record price

Minneapolis' 222 Hennepin gets a record price

The project includes 286 apartments and downtown Minneapolis’ first Whole Foods.
Viewpoint: Realtor Kevin Sharkey expands Better Homes franchise to Minnesota

Viewpoint: Realtor Kevin Sharkey expands Better Homes franchise to Minnesota

In the real estate world, Kevin Sharkey has always taken the path less traveled. In the 1980s, he was among the first agents at one…
Condo developer Stanton plans new Mill District project

Condo developer Stanton plans new Mill District project

Jim Stanton’s success with the Stonebridge Lofts has led him to buy a nearby parcel.
Woodbury man dies in car-semi crash on I-94 in Wisconsin

Woodbury man dies in car-semi crash on I-94 in Wisconsin

The truck was parked on the shoulder of westbound I-94 in Wisconsin due to mechanical difficulties when an Oldsmobile crashed into it.

Hay bale hits pickup in Houston County, starts fire and seriously injures two

A runaway hay bale hit a pickup in Houston County on Saturday morning, started a fire and seriously injured two people. The incident occurred northeast…

Forest Lake hockey official arrested on DWI after St. Paul party bus is stolen

A director of a Twin Cities-area hockey club is facing a drunken-driving charge after allegedly taking a bar bus for an inebriated joy ride. Michael…

Walter Mondale released from Mayo Clinic after bout with flu

Former Vice President Walter Mondale was doing well after being released Saturday morning from the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, where he was being treated for…
Target Corp. cuts will reverberate in downtown Minneapolis

Target Corp. cuts will reverberate in downtown Minneapolis

Target Corp. is the dominant employer in downtown Minneapolis. So its plan to empty thousands of desks over the next two years could significantly affect an increasingly vibrant city center.
U.S. Bank provides financing for Hamline Station project

U.S. Bank provides financing for Hamline Station project

$30M Hamline Station in St. Paul includes units for lower incomes, homeless.
Building code changes prompt construction surge

Building code changes prompt construction surge

Rule changes are expected to increase the cost of building a house
Trillium Woods in Plymouth nearing completion

Trillium Woods in Plymouth nearing completion

Sprawling, $161 million Trillium Woods will include apartments, assisted living and memory care units plus many amenities and a “town center.”
Home sales in the Twin Cities off to a strong start

Home sales in the Twin Cities off to a strong start

Pending sales rose in January, signaling winter’s lull is over
Neighborhood task force OKs 30-story tower to replace Nye's

Neighborhood task force OKs 30-story tower to replace Nye's

The latest plans call for 189 rental apartments in a 30-story tower atop one level of underground parking, five levels of above-grade parking and ground-floor retail space.
Salvaged Minneapolis skyway could be your next home

Salvaged Minneapolis skyway could be your next home

The sky's the limit for this salvaged downtown relic, an 80-foot skyway section that may be the ultimate recycling project. You can have it for — wait a minute; they'll actually pay you $5,000 to haul it away.
Awash in apartments, downtown Minneapolis getting new condos

Awash in apartments, downtown Minneapolis getting new condos

These are the first new condominiums in the North Loop since before the housing crash.
Obituary: Emily West Day was 101

Obituary: Emily West Day was 101

Emily West Day never let age get in the way of doing what she loved. Well into her late 90s she traveled, helped raise money…
Nye's owner, developer plan to save oldest portions of restaurant

Nye's owner, developer plan to save oldest portions of restaurant

The two century-plus-old buildings in Minneapolis will be moved together, anchoring a retail development beside a new, 29-story apartment tower.
Nye's owner, developer: We'll preserve some stuff

Nye's owner, developer: We'll preserve some stuff

The two century-plus buildings in Minneapolis will be moved together, anchoring a retail development beside a new, 29-story apartment tower.
Proposal for Superior Plating site moves forward

Proposal for Superior Plating site moves forward

Plans for an 18-story project on Superior Plating site move forward

Reporter's notebook: What remodeling projects pay off when you sell?

Which projects pay off? With home equity rising — albeit modestly — more people are thinking about tackling long-neglected fix-up projects. So I thought it…
Twin Cities laundry service adds high-tech twist

Twin Cities laundry service adds high-tech twist

Even the laundry business is being transformed by smartphones, software and entrepreneurs like Jeff Gardner.

Fewer Twin Cities homeowners are 'underwater'

Fewer of the Twin Cities’ homeowners are “underwater.”
For 2014, new home sales drop 1% in Twin Cities

For 2014, new home sales drop 1% in Twin Cities

While apartment construction soared in the metro, new houses surprisingly fell.
Millennial population jumps sharply in Twin Cities

Millennial population jumps sharply in Twin Cities

The surging number of young people in the Twin Cities are absorbing sharply higher rents.
Software that narrows the home search one variable at a time

Software that narrows the home search one variable at a time

NorthstarMLS is investing in a digital tool that helps buyers make better decisions.
Twin Cities housing market seen as buyer's market as sales decline

Twin Cities housing market seen as buyer's market as sales decline

A decline in November home sales suggests a Twin Cities market headed toward balance.
Fazendin, state's largest indie Realtor, passes to new generation

Fazendin, state's largest indie Realtor, passes to new generation

Andy Fazendin will take control of the brokerage his grandfather began.
Developer plans to build high-rise on Nye's Polonaise site

Developer plans to build high-rise on Nye's Polonaise site

Schafer Richardson will join with the Jacob brothers, owners of Nye’s, on a mixed-use development for the prominent site.
Want to buy an apartment building? Get in line

Want to buy an apartment building? Get in line

Apartment properties are attracting big-spending buyers as many investors seek safety.
Twin Cities homebuilders closing out a sluggish 2014

Twin Cities homebuilders closing out a sluggish 2014

Single-family construction is lagging, but rental apartments remain a hot spot.
Builders send home buyers online for inspiration

Builders send home buyers online for inspiration

A Twin Cities company that helps home buyers see what a customized new house looks like is about to make a national splash.

Two towers proposed for northeast Minneapolis

The former Superior Plating site could be apartments and shops.
Twin Cities home sales continue to inch lower, even as rates fall

Twin Cities home sales continue to inch lower, even as rates fall

A continuing decline in foreclosure sales is a sign of health for the Twin Cities market.
Minnesota's biggest office complex change hands again

Minnesota's biggest office complex change hands again

Normandale Lake Office Park in Bloomington sells once again.
As apartment building surges in the Twin Cities, so does demand

As apartment building surges in the Twin Cities, so does demand

The vacancy rate for apartments fell from July to September, surprising the real estate community.
Minnesota home sales slip on slowing investment

Minnesota home sales slip on slowing investment

The decline from a year ago is happening for different reasons from the metro area’s slide.
Obituary: John T. Coskran, Catholic Charities executive who nurtured volunteers

Obituary: John T. Coskran, Catholic Charities executive who nurtured volunteers

Throughout his working life, John Coskran was dedicated to helping people. But this was far from scripted. “He said he fell into his careers,” said…
Homebuilding app helps builders, buyers

Homebuilding app helps builders, buyers

A Wayzata homebuilder developed software to make construction easier and create a better experience for clients.
Move purchase reshapes digital real estate market

Move purchase reshapes digital real estate market

News Corporation’s purchase of Move, operator of Realtor.com, could reshape the apps and online sites that now dominate real estate marketing.
Streetscapes: How does the tallest apartment tower in Minneapolis stack up?

Streetscapes: How does the tallest apartment tower in Minneapolis stack up?

The glassy 36-story LPM Apartments stands tall in its low-rise Loring Park neighborhood.
Plan now for future of family cabin

Plan now for future of family cabin

While pulling in the dock, put some thought into a successful succession.
Virtual house tours give real estate agent an edge

Virtual house tours give real estate agent an edge

Mapping camera lets buyers see houses in a whole new way, and one Twin Cities agent has invested heavily in the idea.
Two more residential towers planned for downtown Mpls.

Two more residential towers planned for downtown Mpls.

Inspired by early success at downtown Minneapolis’ Nic on Fifth, Opus has its sights set on two more a block away.
Living next to the mall: Low on view, high on convenience

Living next to the mall: Low on view, high on convenience

The views aren’t picturesque, but convenience has its own appeal for the first people moving into homes in the parking lots of shopping centers.
Twin Cities home sales downshifting

Twin Cities home sales downshifting

Closings fell while home prices rose in the 13-county metro area last month. More sellers appeared on the market.
Bigger, wider townhouses coming to Burnsville

Bigger, wider townhouses coming to Burnsville

A casualty of the recession gets new life by shrinking the scope of the original housing project.
Historic North Loop building slated to become a hotel

Historic North Loop building slated to become a hotel

Developers bought the Jackson Building, a former warehouse, with plans to convert it.

How low will they go? Mortgage rates fall to new 2014 lows

The average rate for a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage has fallen to 4.15 percent, HSH.com said.

August disappoints homebuilders in the Twin Cities

Apartments represented just a quarter of all new residential units built — a major decrease.
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