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Richmond Times-Dispatch , Thursday, July 24, 2014
(RECAP: The city of Richmond is considering the creation an inspection program for rental properties in old areas of the city, a policy that could have a major impact on the 56 percent of city housing occupied by renters. The rental inspections would apply in special districts created by the city with a high volume of renters and a risk of blight. As envisioned, the program would focus on student-heavy historic neighborhoods such as the Fan District, Oregon Hill, Jackson Ward and Carver, but the exact districts would be drawn later by city officials. A survey conducted by the Virginia Municipal League last year found that 22 Virginia localities have rental inspection programs.)
Loudoun Times , Wednesday, July 23, 2014
(RECAP: Nearly 100 workforce housing apartments were dedicated in Brambleton on July 22 to provide reduced-rent housing for working families. Shreveport Ridge helps fill a void in Loudoun County for low-cost housing for working families. The one- to four-bedroom units feature energy efficient geothermal heating, significantly reducing utility costs for renters. The rental apartments were built by the Windy Hill Foundation and T.M. Associates.)
MSNBC, Wednesday, July 23, 2014
(RECAP: Wisconsin Republican Rep. Paul Ryan will unveil a new anti-poverty plan this week that moves away from austere budget cuts and focuses instead on consolidating social services, expanding tax credits for low-income workers and other policy reforms. Ryan will propose to consolidate a variety of safety net programs, including food stamps, section 8 housing vouchers, rental assistance, home weatherization and welfare payments. If states opt into the pilot program, they would have more flexibility in designing them.)
Leesburg Today, Wednesday, July 23, 2014
(RECAP: The promise made a quarter century ago to include affordable housing in the 2,000-acre Brambleton community was celebrated Tuesday with the ribbon cutting for the Shreveport Ridge Apartments. Developed by a partnership led by the Middleburg-based Windy Hill Foundation, the center will provide 98 townhouse-style apartments to help fill the county’s need for workforce housing. Across the street Brambleton’s developers are building another 200 workforce units.)
Inside NOVA, Wednesday, July 23, 2014
RECAP: Home sales across Virginia for the second quarter of 2014 were down 5.7 percent from the same period last year, with the median sales price also slipping. The decline in total sales was broad-based, with only one of seven geographic areas of the commonwealth seeing an increase compared to a year before. Median sales prices, however, posted increases in three of seven areas. A total of 28,248 properties went to closing in April, May and June, according to figures reported by the Virginia Association of Realtors (VAR). That’s down from 29,962 sales in the same period in 2013, although sales were higher than in the comparable quarters in 2011 and 2012.)
Martinsville Bulletin , Tuesday, July 22, 2014
(RECAP: During the next two weeks, Martinsville officials expect to sign papers to transfer control of the former Henry Hotel to Waukeshaw Development Inc. for revitalization, according to Assistant City Manager Wayne Knox. Waukeshaw, of Petersburg, intends to spend $3.2 million to turn the four-story building at the intersection of East Church and Broad streets uptown into 25 apartments and four commercial units. After it starts, construction is expected to be finished in about 10 months.)
HousingWire, Tuesday, July 22, 2014
(RECAP: Existing home sales declined 2.3% in June 2014 from June 2013, reaching an annual pace of 5 million sales for the first time since October 2013, while rising inventory continues to push overall supply towards a more balanced market, according to the National Association of Realtors. NAR President Steve Brown said Realtors are reporting that some prospective buyers who have above average credit scores but low down payments are deterred from homeownership by the high cost of FHA mortgage insurance.)
Bloomberg, Tuesday, July 22, 2014
(RECAP: America’s fragile housing recovery is getting a boost from military buyers using VA mortgages as the U.S. draws down troops after more than a decade of combat in Iraq and Afghanistan. About 4.7 million full-time troops and reservists served during the wars and many are now able to take advantage of one of the easiest and cheapest paths to homeownership. The program’s share of new mortgages, at a 20-year high, is also increasing as other types of government-backed loans have grown more costly. VA loans accounted for 8.1 percent, or $19.5 billion, of mortgages made in the first quarter, up from 6.9 percent in 2013 and less than 2 percent a decade ago.)
DS News, Tuesday, July 22, 2014
(RECAP: Citing a recent panel discussion at the Urban Institute on "Quantifying the Impact of Student Loan Debt on Homeownership," and recently published reports by the Brookings Institute and Jeffrey Thompson, economist at the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, the chief economist atCoreLogic draws the conclusion that while student loan debt undoubtedly affects financial decisions for those post-college, there is zero empirical evidence to back up the claim that these debts are keeping young people from buying their first homes.)
USA Today, Tuesday, July 22, 2014
(RECAP: A new poll out this week found that three-quarters of those surveyed are in favor of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau — including 85% of Democrats, 75% of independents and 63% of Republicans. In general, the survey by Lake Research Partners found that nearly 78% of respondents across party lines favor tougher regulation of Wall Street, 61% believe new regulations can help prevent a future financial crisis, and only 21% think these regulations hurt the economy. This new poll follows a similar survey released last week, which showed that 60% of Americans favor stricter regulation of banks, and only 28% oppose more regulation.)
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