Housing starts down 2%
Housing starts across the US fell by 2%, according to the latest data from the U.S. Commerce Department. The seasonally adjusted figure is 1.065 million units for January and was hit by a 22.2% drop in starts in the Midwest.
Multifamily starts saw the biggest proportion of the decline, falling 7.5% to 387,000 units while single-family starts fell 6.7% to 678,000.
The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) said it is not concerned by the stats: “After a strong single-family report in December, it is not surprising to see some pull back in January,” NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe, said. “With continued job creation and a growing economy, single-family production should make gains in the year ahead.”
Currently builder confidence in the market for newly built, single-family homes is lower, down two points to a level of 55 on the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index released this week.
Home prices up so far this year in Iowa
Prices are up, the number of sales is slightly down and homes are selling faster. Those are the three key messages from the Iowa Association of Realtors, which reported median prices increased by 4.5% in January compared to a year earlier and now stands at $124,900.
Sales across the state were down 1.6% year-over-year to 1,868, but four out of the five largest real estate boards in the state report increased sales from a year ago.
Active listings increased by 12% in January 2015 from a year earlier and pending listings are up by 12.7%. The average time to sell a home in Iowa is down from 95 in January 2014 to 89 last month.
Most expensive one-bed rental in New York - $300k a month
The typical top-end rent for a one-bedroom apartment in New York City’s Upper East Side is $4,500. However, if you want to really splash out, a penthouse apartment has been listed for a cool $300,000 per month!
The one-bedroom, 1,200-square-foot apartment at the top of The Surrey hotel on 76th Street has 1.5 bathrooms and comes with full use of the 5-star hotels facilities.