Gay Realty Network

Real Estate News With a Gay Slant

Gay Realty Watch – Seattle

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Gay Seattle Real EstateWe continue our look into local real estate markets with large gay and lesbian communities. Today, Seattle – home to Capitol Hill, a thriving leather scene, and a burgeoning lesbian community, too! Here’s a sampling of what’s going on in the Seattle real estate market at the moment:

U.S. home prices edge up in July, but will take hit next year in many markets (Seattle Times): Don’t take the latest snapshot of U.S. home prices too seriously. The Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller 20-city index released Tuesday ticked up 0.6 percent in July from June. Seattle was among 12 major metropolitan areas where prices rose, if only by 0.1 percent. But the overall national gain is merely temporary, analysts say. They see home values taking a dive in many major markets well into next year.

97-year-old Realtor: Housing market prosperous compared to depression (MyNorthwest): You think we’ve been through a rough housing market recently? You should have seen Seattle’s real estate market during the Great Depression, says George Johnson. “The housing market today is prospering compared to back then,” Johnson says. The 97-year-old has been selling real estate in Seattle since 1936, through every bust and boom, a career spanning more than 70 years.

Target to open first small urban store in Seattle (AP): Target Corp. plans to open its first store in a new, smaller format in Seattle in 2012, with plans to expand to 10 other markets in such cities as San Francisco and Baltimore in the next few years. “We’ve never been a cookie–cutter retailer, but we are increasingly realizing that one size doesn’t fit all,” said John Griffith, executive vice president of property management at Target.

Condo Market in August: Sales Drop 13%, Prices Flat (Seattle PI): Redfin recently released data on what happened with the Seattle Area market this August showing that for the city of Seattle the median condo price stayed the same at $290,000 from July to August. Median price was also flat year-over-year. It is surprising that median price has been flat as sales were down 13% to 147 sales. This marks the third month of huge declines in sales volume; July sales dropped 30%, June sales dropped 18.2%.

To Find a Gay Friendly Seattle Real Estate Agent, Click Here

Gay Palm Springs Realtor – Harry Sterling

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Periodically we’ll feature one of our real estate professionals here to let our readers know about some great Realtors, Mortgage Brokers, and Other Real Estate Professionals.

Gay Friendly Palm Springs Realtors and Real Estate Professionals

Harry Sterling, Realtor - Palm Springs, CaliforniaBefore Harry became a Palm Springs real estate agent, Harry worked for Hewlett-Packard for over twenty five years. During his final 5 years, he worked to make his division at HP more responsive to customers. He holds a Business Administration degree, and when he retired from HP, he decided to become a real estate agent. He continues his real estate education today, regularly taking classes and attending seminars on resl estate related issues.

Harry loves to work with everyone, and believes in the importance of basic human rights and the value of diversity in our culture. He also promises to always be honest and ethical in his dealings with his clients, and will help them all the way through the real estate transaction, from the signing of the contract to the close of escrow.

Harry belongs to the NAR (National Association of Realtors), and is a member of the Palm Springs Chamber of Commerce.

The real estate market in Palm Springs is complex, and a great Realtor can help you make sense of it and get the best price for your place – whether you’re looking to buy or sell a Palm Springs area home. He’ll work hard to help you meet your Palm Springs real estate goals. If you want to buy or sell real estate in the Palm Springs area, give Harry a call.

See Harry’s Expanded Listing on Gay Realty Network Here

Gay Realty Watch: Palm Springs

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Palm Springs at NightToday, we’ll continue our look into local real estate markets with large gay and lesbian communities. Today, Phoenix – hot hot hot. Here’s a sampling of what’s going on in the Phoenix real estate market at the moment:

POSH hotel’s renovation embodies Palm Springs’ message (MyDesert.com): Set against a seafoam-green matte advertising board, POSH is the epitome of Palm Springs’ new brand image, “Like no place else.”  Suzy and Michael Antal trekked all over the country over the past two years to find the perfect B&B to buy and set their sights on Palm Springs. ”We bought the Desert Bear in September 2009 for $850,000,” and spent more than $150,000 to renovate it, Suzy said.

Home Prices Jump 19.2 Percent in July, Desert Realtors Association Says (MyDesert.com): The median price of existing home sales in the Coachella Valley rose 19.2 percent in July, typically one of the slowest months for sales, the California Desert Association of REALTORS reported today. Sales declined by 22.2 percent in July over July 2009, due in part because of the federal tax credit expiring in May. The median price in July was $194,320 up from $163,080 in July 2009. June’s median price was $198.570.

Property tax revenues to fall further in Riverside County (NC Times): Riverside County will collect $93 million less in property tax revenues in fiscal 2010-11, the second consecutive year of declines, county officials said. The county expects to collect $2.7 billion, a 3.5 percent decline from last year, said Don Kent, Riverside County Treasurer-Tax Collector. The figure represented a lesser drop from the 2009-10 year, in which property tax revenues fell $210 million, or 7 percent.

Foreclosure sales 31 percent lower than one year ago (MyValleyNews.com): Riverside County had the third-highest foreclosure rate in the state last month, with the number of filings virtually unchanged from July, a real estate tracking firm reported today. A total 7,039 mortgage default notices, auction sale notices and bank repossessions were recorded countywide in August, according to Irvine-based RealtyTrac.

Local sales plummet, but median price rises (NCTimes): House sales in North County fell in August to levels normally only seen only in winter months as buyers jittery about the economy stayed on the sidelines, according to real estate agents and government data.  Sales fell to 604 houses, down 24 percent from July and 34.3 percent compared with August 2009, and condo sales fell to 254, down 15 percent from July and 23.4 percent from August 2009, according to a North County Times analysis of data from the San Diego County assessor. House sales last fell that low in January, and before that the market hadn’t been that slow since 2007.

To Find a Gay Friendly Palm Springs Real Estate Agent, Click Here

Gay Seattle Realtor: Ken Latz

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Periodically we’ll feature one of our real estate professionals here to let our readers know about some great Realtors, Mortgage Brokers, and Other Real Estate Professionals.

Gay Friendly Seattle Realtors and Real Estate Professionals

Ken Latz, Realtor - Seattle, WashingtonKen has been a Seattle resident since ’88, and he is very familiar with the city and all of its diverse neighborhoods and suburbs. He joined the Landmark Group because they offer great training, and have a staff of highly ethical real estate agents who work hard to meet their clients’ needs.

Ken has a long history working in sales, and has learned how to negotiate, market, and make long term friends and clients with his high level of service and his knowledge of internet marketing.

If you decide to work with Ken as your Seattle real estate agent, he’ll bring a professional approach and an attention to detail to your home search or sale.

Ken serves the Greater Seattle Metro Area, including Seattle, Bellevue, Renton, Burien, Kirkland, and more.

See Ken’s Expanded Listing on Gay Realty Network Here

Gay Denver – Where Are the Gay Friendly Neighborhoods in Denver?

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Periodically, we’ll run guest columns from our member realtors on their areas, and issues that affect gay and lesbian buyers.  This week, we have Vicki Porter and Wendy Levy, Denver Realtors from Ideal Properties, on Denver’s gay neighborhoods.  (Click here to see Gay Realty Network’s Denver, Colorado real estate page):

Gay Denver NeighborhoodsWhere Are the Gay Friendly Neighborhoods in Denver?

That is a question we get frequently, and it is one that is easy to answer. All of our Mile High City is gay friendly! Seriously. We have heard that Denver has the 7th largest LGBT population in the country, so maybe that is why.

Also, Denver is the largest city in a 600-mile radius, so it attracts GLBT men and women from all over the West. Our Denver’s PrideFest has become one of the largest in the nation, and the annual Gay Rodeo packs in cowboys from around the world.

The GLBT community here is highly visible – socially, professionally, and politically – and gay-friendly restaurants, bars, hotels, and other businesses are easy to find throughout Metro Denver. With easy access to skiing and hiking, a sunny climate, and relative affordability compared with other big urban centers, the Mile High City makes for a highly appealing relocation destination for many.

A few of our favorite hoods, all of which are very gay friendly:

Capitol Hill – Right in the heart of the city is an area known as Cap Hill, which has always attracted a large gay population.

Gay Denver Real Estate - Cheesman ParkCheesman Park (at right) – Just east of downtown is a large park where our huge annual gay pride parade begins. Cheesman Park has always been viewed as the “gayest” park in Denver and the neighborhood surrounding it is fabulous.

Cherry Creek – The Cherry Creek neighborhood is about half high-end retail and office space, the other half, high-end residential, and is a pretty exclusive hood. Cherry Creek prices are the highest dollar per square foot in Denver. The Ideal Properties of Denver office is in Cherry Creek.

Congress Park – Just east of Cheesman Park, but still central Denver, is a terrific neighborhood that Vicki used to call home. Older homes, typically, interspersed with small apartment buildings… another great place to live.

Country Club – located adjacent to the Denver Country Club, is one of the elite neighborhoods in the city. Another older neighborhood with lots of large, elegant homes.

Denver Gay Neighborhoods - clock towerHighlands – Just west of downtown, on the other side of the highway, is another popular older neighborhood. Lots of bungalows and Victorian 2-story homes many of which are located near small cafes, coffee shops and even small theaters.

Hilltop – The Hilltop neighborhood gets its name from the fact that it is higher in elevation than the surrounding parts of the city. In the center of the neighborhood is Cranmer Park, with a view of the Front Range Mountains. Fifties and sixties ranches, many of which have been scraped and replaced by giant, towering 2-story homes.

Lowry – Once a working Air Force base, Lowry transformed into a forward-thinking, mixed-use community. The idea behind Lowry was to take an existing urban area, give it new life and avoid adding to the problem of urban sprawl. Lowry is where Wendy lives, and she loves this unique, diverse community that’s close to the culture and excitement of the city.

Mayfair/Montclair – These neighborhoods are both southeast of Downtown, and just east of Hilltop. Mayfair is graced by celebrated medical facilities like National Jewish Hospital and Rose Medical Center. Both Mayfair and Montclair are experiencing the ‘scrape’ phenomenon where homebuilders have come in and taken off the existing home and built new homes on the existing plot of land.

Park Hill – Just east of City Park, and just west of Stapleton is Park Hill. An elegant, older neighborhood, Park Hill is eclectic neighborhood and most appealing to many. There is an active neighborhood gay group called Park Hill 10%.

Denver Gay Real Estate - DAMPlatt Park – The neighborhood, just west of the University of Denver’s campus, has many popular local businesses and studios. It is a great neighborhood located in southeast Denver. Two of the major draws to Platt Park are Platt Park itself, which is 3 1/2 acres in size, and the commercial area on South Pearl with its restaurants, shops, farmers market, and other events.

Stapleton – Just east of Downtown, where Denver’s old airport was, is an urban area convenient to Downtown Denver. Totally redeveloped, Stapleton has become a family favorite. The gay population dubbed the area Gaypleton and has truly created a large gay community there.

Washington Park – Just southeast of the heart of downtown Denver, is a very popular park, Washington Park. The neighborhood has been a hot real estate area in Denver for many years. The homes were mostly small bungalows originally, but many have been added to or scraped and replaced with high-end duplexes or much larger homes.

Winston Downs – Winston Downs is a wonderful neighborhood that has been a well-kept secret, at least until recently. Winston Downs is just south of the new Lowry development; convenient to Downtown Denver and to the Cherry Creek shopping area. This is where Vicki lives and its appeal is that it mostly ranch homes on larger lots (1/4th acre). The elementary school, The Green School, just opened this year.

We have a great map of the Denver Neighborhoods on our website. Go to http://www.idealpropertiesofdenver.com/neighborhoods-c21382.html

Vicky Porter & Wendy LevyAbout Vicki Porter and Wendy Levy and Ideal Properties of Denver (more can be found on our website: http://www.IdealPropertiesofDenver.com): After many years of selling real estate in Denver from the same office building but with different companies, we decided to join forces to create Ideal Properties of Denver. Our goal was to create a real estate company that would be a good deal better than the rest, and have some fun doing it. So far, so good!

We’ve enjoyed lots of success as a couple of Denver’s top producing real estate brokers over many years. If you are looking to buy or sell property in the Denver metro area, please give us a call/send us an email or text message. We’d love the opportunity to learn how we can best serve you and your real estate needs.

Lesbian Portland, Oregon Realtor: Celia Lyon

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Periodically we’ll feature one of our real estate professionals here to let our readers know about some great Realtors, Mortgage Brokers, and Other Real Estate Professionals.

Gay Friendly Portland, Oregon Realtors and Real Estate Professionals

Celia Lyon, Realtor - Portland, OregonCelia was a San Francisco Bay Area resident for a number of years, but was born in Oregon, and has lived in Portland now for over thirty years. She majored in art in college, and was an art teacher for a number of years before starting her career in the Portland real estate market.

Celia loves to travel, and in her off hours, she also makes jewelry, a creative outlet she really enjoys. She’s closely involved with Portland’s gay and lesbian community, and also volunteers with Our House of Portland, the Cascade Aids Project, and several other community organizations.

Celia specializes in residential real estate sales, income property, and can also help you with 1031 tax-deferred exchanges.

See Celia Lyon’s Expanded Listing on Gay Realty Network Here

Gay Realty Watch: Phoenix

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Scottsdale, AZToday, we’ll continue our look into local real estate markets with large gay and lesbian communities. Today, Phoenix – hot hot hot. Here’s a sampling of what’s going on in the Phoenix real estate market at the moment:

Number of homes for sale in Phoenix area up 5 percent in August (Financial News USA): Real estate research firm ZipRealty released numbers Friday that reflect poorly on the Phoenix residential real estate market. The inventory of homes on the local market increased by almost 5 percent, from 33,748 in July to 35,313 in August. Also, nearly 55 percent of the homes on the market have had their list prices reduced at least once.

Photos: The most expensive homes in metro Phoenix (AZ Family): Arizona is well known for its real estate industry.  The past decade has seen a boom and a bust, and despite the record-setting foreclosures that have dominated headlines for the past two years, some say housing in Arizona is on the rebound. With the ebb and flow of a volatile real estate market, one thing remains constant: pockets of Maricopa County contain some of the  most exclusive homes in the country.  Multi-million dollar homes in Paradise Valley, Fountain Hills, North Scottsdale, and other parts of the Valley are the pride and joy of well-heeled locals and America’s rich and famous.

Foreclosures comprise nearly 50 percent of Phoenix existing-home activity (Nat’l Mortgage Professional): wo negative trends are currently clouding the Phoenix, Ariz. area housing market, according to a new report from the W. P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University. August marked the third consecutive month that the median existing-home price dropped in the Valley. Also, foreclosures made up their highest percentage of existing-home activity since back in January.

Phoenix-area home-price forecast mixed: (AZ Republic): Home prices in the Phoenix area could hold steady and even tick up slightly during September, according to the latest research from the Arizona Regional Multiple Listing Service. The group’s pending-price index shows the region’s median home-sale price this month will be $120,000, compared with $119,000 in August. Then, prices could tick up to $126,000 in October, only to fall back to $120,000 in November and drop to $110,000 in December.

Arizona recession is finally over, economists say (AZ Central): The longest recession since the Great Depression is officially over – across the United States and, by many economists’ accounts, in Arizona.  With unemployment at a 27-year high and poverty on the rise in the state, an announcement from Cambridge, Mass., that the recession officially ended 15 months ago was greeted by many with eye-rolling skepticism.  But Arizona economists agree: Despite job shortages, declining home values and a distressingly high foreclosure rate, the recession is history.

To Find a Gay Friendly Phoenix Real Estate Agent, Click Here

Gay Albuquerque Realtor: Steve Benoit

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Periodically we’ll feature one of our real estate professionals here to let our readers know about some great Realtors, Mortgage Brokers, and Other Real Estate Professionals.

Gay Friendly Albuquerque Realtors and Real Estate Professionals

Steve Benoit, Realtor - Albuquerque, NMSteve graduated from the University of New Mexico, and has been involved in the New Mexico real estate market for a long time. He earned his New Mexico real estate license almost 20 years ago, and has stayed with the same company since then.

Steve specializes in residential real estate, and will give you the best service and advice on the Albuquerque real estate market. He has closed over $10,000,000 in Albuquerque real estate sales a year, and is in the top 5% of Albuquerque real estate agents.

When you’re looking for a Realtor, it’s important to find one who will give you quality service, who has a great reputation, and who will help you buy or sell a home quickly and at the right price. If you’re looking for an Albuquerque real estate agent, call Steve!

See Steve’s Expanded Listing on Gay Realty Network Here

Gay Hoboken, New Jersey Realtor: David J. Bistany

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Periodically we’ll feature one of our real estate professionals here to let our readers know about some great Realtors, Mortgage Brokers, and Other Real Estate Professionals.

Gay Friendly New Jersey Realtors and Real Estate Professionals

David Bistany, Realtor - Hoboken, New JerseyDavid is dedicated to providing top-notch customer service to all of his clients, and hopes you’ll return to work with him again in the future, when you’re ready to buy or sell your next Hoboken area home. He is a licensed Realtor in New Jersey, and was educated at Rutgers University. He has also attended Coldwell Banker University, and continues his real estate education through ongoing courses and seminars.

David belongs to Coldwell Banker’s Multi-million Dollar Club, and specializes in new homes, condominiums, rentals, and first time buyers, and can also provide assistance with mortgages and refinances. He grew up in the New York City area, and has a background in journalism.

He is actively involved in the Hoboken community, with memberships in the Hoboken Chamber of Commerce and the Schoolhouse Association. He has also volunteered with the Empire Pride Agenda and New York & New Jersey Human Rights Campaign.

David has worked for Coldwell Banker for over four years, and would love to be your Hoboken real estate agent.

See David Bistany’s Expanded Listing on Gay Realty Network Here

Buenos Aires Developer Plans Gay Real Estate Development in Argentina

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A REAL estate group is promoting the first residential community for gays in Argentina, which broke ground in July by becoming the first Latin American country to authorize same-sex marriage. The project may include ‘a residential complex for people of the same sex driven by the recent approval of the gay marriage law,’ developer Antonio Forte said Saturday.

Mr Forte said a site has not yet been selected for the gated community, which he said would initially have 100 luxury homes.

Although the project targets gays, ‘anyone who wants to can live there,’ he told AFP.

Full Story from the Straits Times