Headlines: Houston Home Sales Don’t Stop; Glenbrook Valley Redo

Photo of Mini mount, yesterday at Kirby at Richton: Loves Swamplot

12 Comment

  • Ain’t no market like a Third Coast market ’cause a Third Coast market don’t stop?

  • Apparently I picked a terrible time (in terms of real estate) to move to Houston. This market is rough on a buyer.

  • Don’t worry, Curtis, HAR has been exaggerating and manipulating numbers for years. If you listen to their every press release, the median price of houses by now should be 14 million dollars and sales up 12,000 % week over week.
    There are still huge inventories all over town in specific and desireable neighborhoods, there’s still tons of bank owned homes, and banks are still not giving loans to almost anyone.

  • where can I find more info on this Mini in the above photo? Not seeing a link to what’s going on here…


  • Commensense, I know you are just a troll and I should not be responding to you, but to say that “banks are not loaning to almost anyone” is just crap.
    I have been able to get all my clients financed. Worst cases this year has been
    1)having to switch Lenders because the 1st Lender did not have underwriting for an Investor owned condo and
    2) in the other because USAA is too cumbersome to
    use with Fannie Mae Homepath.
    In both cases it meant more emails and shuffling around, but the closing date was not even delayed.

  • The Glenbrook Valley/Restore owners did a FAB job on their restore and should be praised.
    And, I’m sure the owners realize and are working on it- but that dining room “set” has got to go.
    Please acquire something mid-century.

  • @Jim P
    +1 for the Glenbrook remodel. MCM houses can really come to life in the right hands. I would cut the owners some slack on the dinning room table. MCM furniture pieces are getting a huge premium these days. Just finding something is hard enough. Being able to afford it is another battle.

  • Harold, I deal with lenders, brokers, and developers on daily basis. Obviously some people are getting financed, if a borrower has perfect profile then he could get credit in any market. However, as a general number of people who “want” to buy a house, at least 80% are being denied for various minor issues either with them or the property itself. I do not think that lending should be like the insanity during the housing boom levels, but banks are definitely still clenching it tight.

  • Harold: It’s still VERY hard to get financing. Maybe your clients are better than average, or perhaps people that are looking for a loan are those that know they can get it (meaning you don’t have people that can’t get a loan even come to you for one because they know better).
    I own a bunch of single family homes in cash that I can’t refinance. I have fourplexes with small private debt that I can’t refinance. And getting a commercial loan is like getting kicked in the nuts for 7 weeks. Now granted I’m self employed (toxic to lenders) and pay myself little (most stays in my company), and with legal write offs the company makes little as well. That said, any loan I attempt to get is typically very conservative on a loan to value standpoint so what I pay myself shouldn’t matter. A lender wouldn’t cash out a $5 loan on a $100k house with no debt unless you as a borrower fit in a box. Even though, at some point, an LTV can become so low that the loan risk is 0.
    We’re better than we were a year ago but we have a long ways to go till lending is ‘reasonable’. I define reasonable as where lenders are making smart decisions rather than following conforming guidelines that gave us the ‘lend to anyone’ 5 years ago then the ‘lend to know one’ soon after. In both cases, the lenders were making dumb decisions for one simple reason: They were not making decisions. They were following guidelines so their loan could fit in a box and be packaged and sold. So the guidelines said “lend to anyone!” They did, and got hosed (or those that bought the paper did). Then “Lend to no one!” which screwed them by leaving money on the table by not lending to otherwise qualified buyers and crushing the market.
    If lenders actually did loans (rather than simply originate them) then you’d see much better decisions being made and the market doing better.
    And if I can put on my conspiratorial hat: The reason the government got so involved in lending via dod frank and others is so THEY could control what a “conforming” loan was. This allowed them to force lenders to only lend based on tax returns (vs. stated) which caused people who are self employed or those with lots of write offs to all of a sudden NOT get loans. The banks/lenders know the loan is safe, but they can’t justify the loan on their books. Why do that? To force people to claim income they may not be legally required to report. I’ve had banks tell me to take LESS (legal!) writeoffs to boost my income (and tax bill) so they could lend. I’ve replied back that it would make me a WORSE borrower as I’d have less liquidity. A lender making their OWN decision would not suggest that. But since they loan based on what the government says, they need to be able to justify my loan when the government regulators come view the books.
    Sorry for the novel. This is a sore subject for me as I deal with it daily.

  • @Cody and @Commonsense – Do you two even work or live in Houston? I ask you this because all of the Realtors I deal with are telling me that they are selling their listings quickly and that new home inventory in “desirable” neighborhoods is going quickly. I sell new homes in a Cypress area neighborhood at right around the $300k price point and have not had one client denied a loan and am selling every inventory home I have before they are getting completed.
    I live in Houston and bought and closed on a home built in 1953 while still keeping my existing home one year ago last month. When I did put my previous home built in 1983 on the market in May, it went live on a Thursday and had four offers by the end of that first weekend. I ended up with a full price contract that closed in 45 days. The homes in my Spring Branch neighborhood have average days on market of 29 days, this seems pretty good to me. Many are tear downs and the values keep going up. I can only offer you my personal, anecdotal evidence that really seems to contradict what you are both saying. As for the HAR numbers, they are just extrapolating the numbers in their MLS system. @CurtisJ, you are probably experiencing what some of my would be buyers have experienced….I want to think about it…come back next day or two and the home they looked at is under contract to someone else. @Harold, it is a great time to be in Real Estate in Houston TX!

  • Newhome Guy, obviously you didn’t read Cody’s novel. I’m guessing that all of your buyers are standard jobholders with standard tax returns, with their only deductions being mortgage interest, property tax, and charitable donations. If you try to get funding for anything “unusual”, i.e. unoccupied commercial property, pre-1945 houses, fourplexes, etc., its extremely difficult. The only way the banks will even think about playing ball is if you’ve got stellar credit and you’re willing to wrap an existing asset with massive equity into the deal as collateral, and even then its a months long process.

  • Cody, let me clarify– I was talking about residential homestead real estate because that is what I thought Commensense was making his outlandish claims about.
    Yes to you and UG– investor underwriting is a whole nother thing, and yes I know it is really hard.
    One of the 2 financing hassles I had in 2012 was with a non-homestead loan. (My practice has seen a lot of parents buying homes for their young adult daughters lately– who knew?) And yes, that was considered investor underwriting and more hassle-y.
    Now step it up to an actual investor like yourself, and no the money is not there.
    But I stand by my claim- lots of good correspondent lenders out there for homestead property. They are closing my stuff on time & happy funding, and this is not my personal magic, this is happening all over the inner loop