Versace

Gianni Versace’s New York Mansion Now On Sale For $70 Million

Gianni Versace’s former Manhattan townhouse has officially hit the market at the luxury price of $70 million. 

Versace originally bought the mansion back in 1995 and fully refurbished the interior, according to the history posted on Sotheby’s International Realty listing

According to the listing, “the mansion, built in 1950, offers the buyer the chance to live like royalty and own a piece of real estate and fashion history.”

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“Grandly designed, 17 luxurious rooms meld together in opulence and couture design. This stately, spacious 35 foot wide Limestone Mansion sited on a 35- by 100-foot lot has approximately 14,175 interior square feet on 6 floors with 3,025 exterior sq. ft. of magical trellised Garden overlooked by a rear Balcony which runs the full width of the house. A Rooftop Terrace with Gazebo overlooks Fifth and Madison.”

Each of the floors of the mansion are meant to embody a different theme. 

“Versace, the late fashion tycoon purchased the neoclassical building in 1995 and fully redesigned the interior with the same Italian Baroque style often referenced in his over-the-top couture including intricate Italian Marble floors, painted ceilings and walls, mosaic and Austrian parquet floors, five fireplaces, and opulent Baths.”

“Versace’s genius and vision is revealed over the first 4 floors, each presenting the designer’s legendary taste and permeating the home.”

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“The Upper two floors were redesigned in a lighter, more whimsical manner. These levels include terrazzo floorings with marble inserts, 4 Bedrooms, 2 Baths, a Game Lounge with billiards and arcade games and a Moroccan-style Media Room,” the listing states

The mansion also offers a slew of modern features without compromising the old classical charm that gives the space so much history. 

These features include an “advanced Security System, multiple zoned HVAC system, Kaleidoscope music system. In addition, the home includes double water pumps and boilers all powered with its own generator so the owner would never be without essential services.”

Location wise, the Mansion is right in the heart of New York City, overlooking Fifth Avenue and bordering Central Park.

According To Report, Real Estate Closing Costs See Rise In 2021

According to a April 21 report by CoreLogic’s ClosingCorp, real estate closing costs rose by 13.4% in 2021, which moved the average extra fees for a single-family home to around $6,905 when including transfer taxes. Without transfer taxes, that would come to $3,860, an 11.2% year-over-year increase.

Among CoreLogic’s key takeaways include the average U.S. home price increasing by more than $50,000 last year, while average purchase closing costs rose by $818 including tax and $390 excluding tax; closing costs as a percentage of home sales prices were down; and average purchase fees as a percentage of the average sales price dropped from 1.85% in 2020 to 1.81%.

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It’s just another blow to potential homebuyers scouring the market, who have to deal with average listing prices that now range at $811,00, which are up by over $100,000 since the fall of 2021. The median sales price for houses sold sits at $428,700, up from around $369,000 at the same time last year.

“As the mortgage industry comes off two years of record-low interest rates and red-hot consumer demand, lenders are now pivoting to address increasing headwinds from higher loan origination costs and lower origination volumes,” CoreLogic’s ClosingCorp CEO Bob Jennings said in the report. “As the market tightens in 2022, it will be interesting to see how lenders and borrowers respond and how these key metrics move.”

It’s an expected outcome for lenders. In the fourth quarter of 2021, the MPA reported that the number of lenders who expected profit margins to drop in the first quarter of 2022 rose from 46% to 65%. 31% expected profits to stay the same, while only 3% expected positive developments. MPA also found that banks were collecting a $1,099 profit on each loan approved in the fourth quarter of 2021, down $1,495 from the profits gained from each loan in the previous quarter.

As Fortune explains, closing costs usually include expenses related to paying off lenders’ fees and underwriting mortgage loans. Other expenses can include taxes — which often make up the majority of the costs, as shown by the 2.2% difference between transfer taxes and non-transfer taxes — title insurance payments, appraisals, and commissions.

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Among the states with the highest average closing costs (including transfer taxes) include Washington, D.C. ($29,888), Delaware ($17,859), New York ($16,849), Maryland ($14,721), and Washington ($13,927). Meanwhile, states with the lowest average closing costs include Missouri ($2,061), Indiana ($2,200), Nebraska ($2,210), Arkansas ($2,281) and West Virginia ($2,465).

Of course, sellers have to pay closing costs as well. While this is unavoidable, Bankrate notes there are ways to help save yourself some much-needed dough. One is by asking your real estate agent if they’re willing to take a lower commission or offer discounted services, though this will result in less marketing on your behalf.

Acting as your own real estate agent when selling your house can help you save money that would’ve been spent on commission, and will allow you to hang on to your home’s sale price. Negotiating better terms for your real estate attorney is also an option.

Virtual Real Estate Marketplace Launching In Metaverse 

Origin is a technology company that is gearing up to launch a virtual real estate marketplace in the metaverse that can be done across multiple blockchains. Origin is providing a singular marketplace for users to buy, sell, and trade land in the metaverse, as well as physical homes sold as NFTs. 

Origin is aiming to be like traditional real estate platforms in the sense that they will be a hub for sellers and buyers to connect with each other based on the clients needs. 

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According to Fred Greene, the founder of Origin, “the demand for metaverse land is continually growing. What the market needs is a single source of data. A reliable platform that simplifies the purchasing of land, while providing buyers and sellers with all the information they need to navigate the process.”

The current metaverse marketplace makes it difficult for transactions to occur over multiple blockchain platforms. Origin is hoping to fill this space in the industry by acting as the middleman between sellers and buyers, and interacting with hundreds of tokens and metaverse worlds. 

By simplifying the transactional process, Origin is hoping to make digital real estate available for everyone. The company wants the masses to see the metaverse as universally accessible so that more people can take advantage of the many perks that it can offer. 

Beyond giving buyers easier access to real estate, Origin is aiming to build communities of active and interested buyers and sellers, who will be able to advertise their listings in front of a much larger audience than the metaverse currently allows. 

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By becoming a multichain platform and simplifying the overall transaction process, Origin is creating a space for even more buyers. 

The company is reopening current barriers that make it difficult for architects and innovators to communicate with each other on certain projects. The metaverse is known for hosting a multitude of isolated worlds catered to each user. Origin is building bridges to make it easier for those worlds to come together when it comes to real estate transactions.

Origin is patent-pending currently, and is aiming to be a major marketplace that focuses specifically on metaverse land. The company has plans to incorporate the sale of both real world properties as NFTs as well as virtual properties. 

The company is currently on track to become the biggest hub for buyers, sellers, and renters, as it will likely be the only source for all metaverse real estate transactions across multiple blockchains.

New Report Shows Keys To Maximizing Real Estate Earning Potential 

McKissock Learning has revealed a new guide of income statistics from licensed real estate professionals across the United States as a means of keeping track of trends, and highlighting the methods that are maximizing agents’ earning potential.

McKissock Learning is one of America’s top online real estate schools, and provides educational courses and professional development to hundreds of thousands of agents across the country every year. 

In November 2021, the company reached out to thousands of licensed real estate agents and brokers to gain a better understanding of the specific strategies used to increase their earning potential. 

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Last year, the number of agents that participated was about half of the 9,000 participants in this year’s report. This way, the guide can show a much more accurate picture of what real estate agents are earning and how they’re making it possible. 

Real estate income is actually on the rise, despite the many complications the industry has faced throughout the Covid-19 pandemic. 75% of real estate agents reported that they earned more in 2020 than they did in 2019, with an average income of $129,996 for full-time agents. 

Another trend that’s helping the market continue to thrive is the fact that more agents are happy with the brokerage they’re a part of. Choosing the right brokerage is an essential part of being a successful agent. 

84% of the agents surveyed stated that they were satisfied with their brokerage experience. Only 6% of participants said that they plan on switching brokerages within the next couple of years. 

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Specializing in a niche has also proven to be one of the keys to maximizing your earning potential. Last year’s report showed the same results, citing that agents who showed eco-friendly properties were able to gain an average income of $263,180. 

92% of the participants reported that they feel very optimistic about their future in real estate, which is the highest percentage in the history of McKissock Learning’s reports. 

Only 12% of agents said they planned on retiring within the next five years. Real estate allows agents to create their own schedules, to an extent, so it’s easier for certain agents to reduce the number of hours they work per week to best fit their lifestyle and income goals. 

The report stated that obviously a reduction in hours could result in a reduction of income for agents, however, individuals can still earn a decent income as a part-time or semi-retired agent.

Russian Oligarchs Could See U.S. Real Estate Properties Seized As Part Of Sanctions

On Wednesday, the Biden Administration announced the creation of a new task force — named “KleptoCapture” — that will enforce U.S. sanctions on Russian oligarchs that have helped to fund Putin’s deadly endeavors.

Biden teased the creation Tuesday night during his State of the Union speech, where he stated that the U.S. would begin to seize oligarch assets such as yachts, jets, and apartments. “We are coming for your ill-begotten gains,” the President threatened. In the past decades, dozens of wealthy oligarchs have set up shop with penthouses, mansions, and apartments in America’s major cities in attempts to capitalize on the real estate market trends.

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The Real Deal took a look at some of the more prominent oligarchs that have high-valued properties in the U.S., with the most notable being Roman Abramovich, the owner of Chelsea F.C. who’s also known as “Putin’s banker.” The 55-year-old Abramovich — worth a net worth of $13.8 billion — is tied to more than $90 million of real estate in New York City with three townhouses (that were transferred over to his ex-wife in late 2017), along with a total of $48.2 million in the form of two mansions near Aspen, Colorado.

Elsewhere in New York, Billionaire Eugene Shvidler, a Russian-American gold mining investor and oil tycoon, purchased a $24.5 million 5,000-square-unit in the city in 2018 while Len Blavatnik has spent a whopping $279.75 million on five properties since 2005, the majority of them located in the Lenox Hill neighborhood of the upper east side.

Meanwhile, Oleg Deripaska, the founder of Rusal, purchased two homes worth $47 million — which he has since transferred to relatives — though that doesn’t beat billionaire Alexei Kuzmichev’s $57.5 million worth of properties. Manhattan Borough President Mark Levine had previously pleaded for the U.S. to take action against the moguls.

“For years Manhattan has been one of the most popular safe harbors for Russian oligarchs to park their cash, especially via ultra-high-end apartments. It’s time to start seizing their properties.”

Of course, it’s not just New York that has attracted hefty purchases. A 2017 Reuters report found that 63 individuals with Russian passports or addresses invested nearly $100 million into seven luxury Trump-branded towers in Southern Florida. The buyers were politically connected businessmen, though Reuters found none to be in Putin’s inner circle.

NBC News also noted that Ukrainian oligarch Ihor Kolomoisky — who became a Russia propogandia supporter during the Trump administration — developed a financial stranglehold in Ohio, becoming the “biggest landlord in downtown Cleveland” in his scheme to move illicit money from Ukrainian banks to the U.S. to buy skyscrapers and steel mills.

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Despite the high notoriety and bountiful assets, most of the oligarchs mentioned — apart from some like Deripaska, who’s been linked to Russian organized crime — have not been put on the sanctions list yet by the U.S. Department of the Treasury. Experts believe it might also be difficult to seize properties due to major disclosure loopholes in private equity and luxury goods that were utilized by the oligarchs, such as in the cases of transferring ownership.

“There’s this misunderstanding that you can just go out and seize these mansions, seize these yachts. For so many of them, it’s a complete black box,” author Casey Michel told NBC News. “The U.S. provided all the tools of anonymity the oligarchs needed.”

With seizes and sanctions threatening their holdings, oligarchs have — perhaps reluctantly — slowly started to speak out against Russia’s actions. Deripaska commented that “the world is very important,” and negotiations for peace should “start as soon as possible.” Abramovich is also set to sell Chelsea following immense pressure.

Disney Launching Residential Communities For Fans 

The theme park division at Disney announced that they are developing master-planned residential communities that will “meet the demand from fans looking for new ways to make Disney a bigger part of their lives.”

The project is a part of Disney’s decades-long efforts to expand into residential development. The company announced this Wednesday that “Storyliving By Disney” communities will be master-planned by Disney Imagineers, who are responsible for designing the company’s many theme parks. 

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Disney employees will operate the community associations. The company also announced that the communities will feature clubs where residents can participate in different forms of entertainment, health and wellness activities, and seminars. 

The first community is set to be developed on a 618-acre community called Cotino in Rancho Mirage, California; DMB Development is also helping bring the community to life. 

Disney plans on building full-scale residential houses, including a neighborhood specifically for individuals aged 55 and older. Mixed-use districts will consist of shopping centers, restaurants, a beachfront hotel, beach park, and a 24-acre “grand oasis” lagoon. 

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Disney is currently looking for additional community locations throughout the nation to further develop the communities. Josh D’Amaro, chairman of Disney Parks, Experiences and Products, made a statement Wednesday regarding the search:

“As we prepare to enter our second century, we are developing new and exciting ways to bring the magic of Disney to people wherever they are, expanding storytelling to Storyliving.” 

Disney’s original residential efforts began in the 1960’s when the late Walt Disney announced his plans for the Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow, or EPCOT. The initial plans were to make the residential community the centerpiece of what is now Disney World. However, when Walt Disney died in 1966, the plans were put on hold, and the EPCOT name was repurposed to be used for Disney’s second theme park. 

Disney restarted residential development in the late 80s and 90s in Florida, with a planned community of Celebration. Celebration was a small town designed by Disney to give fans a nostalgic feeling. 

Disney sold a majority of its shares in Celebration in 2004 to a private investment firm. There’s no solid timeline as to when these Storyliving communities will be available for living, but it’s the biggest effort to come from Disney’s residential sector in a while.

With Low Inventory, Homes Selling Quickly At Record Paces

If you’re shopping on the real estate market, it’s not the best time to have a picky attitude. According to Realtor.com, there were just 408,922 houses on the market last month, a record-low for a country that currently has a population of 332 million people.

The average amount of homes for sale on a typical January day saw 28.4% decline over last year and 60.4% drop compared to 2020. This total continues December’s 26.8% decline, and marks the fourth-straight month where the decline compared to the year prior has dropped.

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The low amount also means homes are going fast. Realtor.com noted that houses were on the market for just 61 days in January, the fastest-pace since the real estate website started tracking that number in 2016. That’s down 10 days from last year, and down 24 days from January 2020.

In the 50 largest metros, an average home spent 52 days on the market, while homes spent seven days less on average when compared to January 2021. Homes also spent -29 days less on the market than the typical time from January 2017 to 2020.

Among the metros, the time a property spent on the market decreased the most in the South (-10 days). Destinations like Miami (-29 days), Orlando (-24 days), and Raleigh (-17 days) saw the biggest drops.

The West followed it up with -8 days, while the Midwest and Northeast came in at -5 and -4 days, respectively. Not all metro markets saw decreased time, however. Hartford, Minneapolis, Richmond, and Washington D.C. all had increased time houses spent for sale, although Hartford separated itself from the competition at +10 days, eight more than the Minneapolis.

While inventory declined in all 50 metros — Hartford having the worst of it with a -61.7% year-over-year drop — four saw new increased year-over-year-growth in listed homes, which include Cleveland (+7.6%), Orlando (+2.3%), Indianapolis (+1.6%), and Houston (+0.9%).

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Housing prices also continue to rise, with active listing prices in the largest metros sitting at 6.1% higher compared to January 2021. Las Vegas saw the biggest year-over-year median price growth with +35.3% (and a median listing price of $460,000) with Tampa and Austin following it up around +28%.

Speaking to CNBC, Realtor.com chief economist Danielle Hale gave a rundown of why the market inventory is severely lacking in quantity. “Factors like omicron uncertainties could be causing sellers to hesitate even when they know housing conditions are favorable,” Hale explained.

“Another key barrier is the inventory ‘chicken-and-egg’ dilemma that may vex sellers who are also buying: Do you list now when home shoppers are hungry for more options, or do you wait for more inventory to hit the market in the spring?”

Supply and workers shortages, along with higher costs of materials, have also contributed to the lack of housing options, which has been an ongoing issue since the beginning of the pandemic in March 2020. According to GoBankingRates, an NAHB report found aggregate cost of residential construction materials has risen 19% since December 2020.

Los Angeles Mansion Named ‘The One’ Could Become The Most Expensive Home Sold In The US At $295 Million 

The One is a mansion in Bel-Air that was once valued at $500 million. Now, the megamansion is being sold for $295 million and will be available on the open market until it’s auctioned off from February 28th to March 3rd. Concierge Auctions is the online auction marketplace responsible for the listing. 

The home will be sold without reserve, which essentially means the highest bidder gets the house. Even if it sells close to the listing price, it will likely break US real estate records. Currently billionaire Ken Griffin’s $238 million New York penthouse holds the record as the most expensive US home ever sold when it was purchased back in 2019.  

The One took more than 10 years to build and bring to life. Nile Niami developed the property, however, after his development company, Crestlloyd, filed for bankruptcy last year, the home has been redirected to auction as part of the bankruptcy proceedings. The home still has about 12 months of work left, meaning the buyer will have to put down around $340,000 as a deposit. 

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Aaron Kirman of Compass and Branden and Rayni Williams of The Beverly Hills Estates are partnering with Concierge Auctions to market the home:

“As the real estate community knows, there are a very limited number of $300 million homes and it often takes one to five years to sell ultra high-end mega mansions. An auction is the best way to sell the home in a specific period of time. The team is open to receiving offers prior to the auction, based on price and terms. It is highly probable that the auction will happen in order for buyers to compete to own the world’s ultimate estate,” Kirman explained

The One is one of the largest homes ever built. It’s twice the size of the White House at 105,000 square feet on a property of over 3.8 acres. Outside of the property there;s a moat of water covering three sides of the home, five pools, a 10,000 square foot deck, and a 400-foot outdoor running track. 

“What we have learned from the pandemic is that a home is one of the most important aspects of life. The property provides an extravagant life, where one doesn’t need to leave their home.”

“It has everything one can imagine, including five swimming pools; a wellness center with a juice bar; large salon and spa; game rooms; bars; bowling alley; a full-size theater; golf simulator;  rooftop; cigar lounge;  a charity pavilion or special event space; and numerous other astonishing amenities,” Kirman says. 

The home has 21 bedrooms, 42 full bathrooms, and seven half bathrooms. Within the home there is artwork that has been custom curated from artists Mark Fields, Stephen Wilson, and Simoe Cenedese. 

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“The One earns its moniker because a home of this size and magnitude simply can never be built again due to anti-mansionization laws that were passed in Los Angeles during The One’s construction. To have 3.8 acres at the top of Bel-Air with unobstructed 360-degree views from every single room is unparalleled,” says co-listing agent Branden Williams. 

The home also includes a putting green, 10,000 bottle wine cellar, tennis court, and night club. 

“The private gala event space with 360-degree views of the city and floating pod seating was an important vision to realize for the developer. He envisioned a home that would be the buyer’s own private resort and have the ability to host the world’s top philanthropists for charity events without ever leaving your estate. It’s obvious why the home holds value, but in a time when metaverse real estate is in the conversation, there’s something to be said about the importance of physical property,” Williams says. 

“These virtual assets have a value based on how much a consumer is willing to pay backed by a specific commodity, typically money, gold, property, etc.,” Kirman says. 

“Real property is an indefinite necessity with proven market values over time, so buying one of the most unique properties ever built in Los Angeles is an investment that cannot be quantified and will be worth it. Comfort is an invaluable resource, so purchasing a property with virtually every amenity available is impossible to quantify since it has never been done before. Supply and demand helps determine something’s value and this is one of one. The supply couldn’t be more limited.”

The home is expected to sell without reserve by March 3rd.

2021 Housing Market Concludes With Price Growths, What To Expect In 2022

The winter housing market in the US started heating up again in December, potentially leading to a hot market in the first quarter of 2022. More buyers have become motivated to hop on real estate transactions due to looming mortgage rate increases as well. 

Listing prices in December returned to double-digits similar to what the market looked like during the spring/summer of 2021 when real estate was seeing some of its most competitive transactions since the start of the pandemic. 

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According to data from Realtor.com’s chief economist Danielle Hale, “December data offered a fitting finish to the frenzy of the past year. Annual listing price growth hit double-digits again nationwide and in many of the hottest markets, after four months of single-digit pace this fall.”

“Despite buyer challenges like rising prices, limited inventory and fast-paced sales, real estate activity maintained a brisk pace throughout 2021 as factors like low mortgage rates enabled home shoppers to persist. With rate hikes now on the horizon, buyers may be trying to get ahead of higher monthly housing costs, in turn driving up competition and prices,” Hale explained.

“Our 2022 forecast anticipates affordability challenges this year, but also that trends like rising incomes and workplace flexibility could offer some Americans a better shot at finding a home.”

“For those who weren’t successful in 2021, we expect better luck in the coming months as more sellers plan to enter the market – and if December’s listings are an indication, with high asking prices in mind,” she explained. 

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 In 2021 the demand for homes was much higher than the supply, which drove prices even higher and will likely continue to drive the prices up in 2022. Realtor.com is also predicting that these price increases will cause a lot of affordability issues in the new year. The average price for a home in the US is now 25% higher than it was in 2019.

Within the past two years the average price for a typical 2,000 square foot single-family home increased by 18.6% consecutively. More than 25% of the US’s largest markets saw double-digit home price gains in 2021. 

While the winter is typically a cooling off period for the market, the past two months have seen historically low listing times, as buyer activity continues to outmatch the limited inventory available throughout the nation. 

When compared to the national pace of the market, time on the market was lower in the US’s 50 largest metropolitans with an average of 48 days on the market, seven days less than last years average and 25 days less than 2019’s average. 

Inventory is expected to increase to ideally meet the demand of buyers in America. December data did show more new sellers entered the market when compared to last year’s numbers, a majority of these listings, however, are in cities. 

Home Sold

Redfin Predicts More Balanced Housing Market, Slower Price Growth In 2022

For those that have been frustrated by the one-sidedness of the real estate market in the past months, the Newy Year should bring you some peace. According to Redfin chief economist Daryl Fairweather, 2022 will see a more balanced housing market.

While Fairweather warned that it won’t entirely be a buyer’s market, there will be more selection and slower price growth. Stalled price growth is a particularly needed occurrence – since 1965, home prices have gone up 118%, while they jumped 25% from 2008 to 2021.

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So, how will prices slow in spite of the jumps they’ve taken in past decades? Fairweather explained that rests in the hands of mortgage rates, which he predicts will rise from 3% to 3.6% due to “pandemic subsiding and lingering inflation.”

“By winter, higher mortgage rates along with already high home prices will likely slow annual price growth down to around 3%, which represents a steep drop from the record 24% increase posted in May 2021.”

With higher mortgage rates, Fairweather said, first-time home buyers will have better chances at grabbing a property while other potential buyers could be discouraged. It would be a welcomed change for first-time buyers, who had tough sledding in 2021.

According to the National Association of Realtors, first-timers made up just one-quarter — or 26% — of the market in November. That mark was the lowest since Jan. 2014. NAR noted first-time buyers made up 33% of home sale buyers in 2020.

While home prices will slow, they won’t stop increasing entirely. Economists and industry leaders who participated in NAR’s Real Estate Forecast Summit predicted prices to rise 5.7%. NAR’s forecasts expect prices to rise, but while remaining under 5%.

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Fairweather made a number of other predictions for 2022, which includes rents raising by 7%. The economist sees several reasons why renting will be in higher demand, such as people choosing to live in cities where renting is common and more people moving to cities due to a strong labor market.

A 7% rental increase would be sizeable compared to previous years. In 2020, the median gross rent rose only 2.6%, while rental rates rose 31% of the past 10 years – an average of 3.1% per year. Redfin’s deputy chief economist explained that millennials will likely be forced to fall back on renting due to high affordability.

“Home prices will remain at record highs requiring hefty down payments at the same time rising mortgage rates will make home buying more expensive, so many potential first-time homebuyers will choose to keep renting.”

Fairweather also believes that politics will play a role in real estate movements, with people relocating to places where their beliefs are more accepted. While the feuds over mask mandates and vaccinations have made states much more diverse to live in, older political debates — such as abortion and pro-guns — while also influence homeowners.

A Redfin survey found that one in seven recent movers said they wouldn’t move to a state where abortion is fully legal. Home values also vary depending on a state’s alignment, giving an additional factor for movers to consider – 77%, or over $20 trillion, of the total U.S. residential real estate value lies in blue states, while red states account for just $7 trillion.