Housing Market Entry Roadblocks

first_imgHome / Daily Dose / Housing Market Entry Roadblocks Governmental Measures Target Expanded Access to Affordable Housing 2 days ago Servicers Navigate the Post-Pandemic World 2 days ago The Week Ahead: Nearing the Forbearance Exit 2 days ago Data Provider Black Knight to Acquire Top of Mind 2 days ago Housing Market Entry Roadblocks Sign up for DS News Daily Share Save Servicers Navigate the Post-Pandemic World 2 days ago Demand Propels Home Prices Upward 2 days ago  Print This Post The Best Markets For Residential Property Investors 2 days ago Related Articles March 9, 2021 917 Views center_img Eric C. Peck has 20-plus years’ experience covering the mortgage industry, he most recently served as Editor-in-Chief for The Mortgage Press and National Mortgage Professional Magazine. Peck graduated from the New York Institute of Technology where he received his B.A. in Communication Arts/Media. After graduating, he began his professional career with Videography Magazine before landing in the mortgage space. Peck has edited three published books and has served as Copy Editor for Entrepreneur.com. Demand Propels Home Prices Upward 2 days ago in Daily Dose, Featured, Journal, News Governmental Measures Target Expanded Access to Affordable Housing 2 days ago Tagged with: Affordability First-Time Homebuyers NerdWallet About Author: Eric C. Peck Affordability First-Time Homebuyers NerdWallet 2021-03-09 Eric C. Peck Data Provider Black Knight to Acquire Top of Mind 2 days ago The housing market was turned upside down over the past year, as the pandemic gripped the nation and brought with it, a world of question marks.NerdWallet took a look at home affordability for first-time buyers in Q4 of 2020, and found that homes remained unaffordable across most of the 50 largest metropolitan areas, despite list prices falling just slightly compared to Q3 2020. Short supply and high demand remained the trends in the market, with the lone exception being the San Francisco market.Despite record-low rates, first-time buyers typically have tighter budgets than repeat buyers, yet accounted for approximately 31% of Q4 home sales nationwide, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR).A very slight seasonal Q4 price dip led to increased affordability in some metro areas. Homes were listed at five times first-time buyer income, on average, among the 50 largest metro areas, compared with 5.2 times their income in Q3 of 2020. Generally, a price point three times a buyer’s annual income is the benchmark when shopping.According to Nerdwallet, homes became slightly more affordable for some shoppers in Q4, as in four metro areas, homes were listed at 3.2 times median first-time buyer income—St. Louis; Pittsburgh; Cleveland; and Buffalo, N.Y.—the most affordable metros in this analysis. The least affordable metro areas for first-timers included Los Angeles, where homes were listed at 12 times the median first-time buyer income; San Diego at 8.6 times the median first-time buyer income; San Jose, Calif. at 7.7 times the median first-time buyer income; San Francisco at 7.2 times the median first-time buyer income; and Sacramento, California at 6.9 times the median first-time buyer income.Nationwide, homes were listed at 4.7 times the median first-time buyer income in Q4.Winter storms played a role in Q4 home search, as the Northeast and Texas were hit with snow, thus restricting sales and home searches.In Q4, of the 50 metros analyzed by Nerdwallet, 37 metros saw list prices either remain the same or decrease quarter-over-quarter. Four metros saw prices fall 10% or more from the third quarter: Buffalo, N.Y. by 10%; Louisville, Ky. by 12%; Cleveland by 13%; and Milwaukee by 15%. Nationwide, list prices fell just 1% from the Q3 to Q4 2020, and 2%, on average, across the largest metro areas.Housing inventory remained an issue nationwide throughout 2020, down 12% in Q4 from Q3 among the most populous metros, on average, and down 13% nationally. Six metro areas experienced year-over-year inventory decreases of more than 50% in the fourth quarter: Riverside, Calif. fell 55%; Salt Lake City fell by 53%; Providence, R.I. slipped 52%; Baltimore fell 52%; Austin, Texas slid 52%; and Memphis, Tenn. Declined by 51%.The exception to this was the San Francisco metro market—traditionally one of the most competitive markets—as the only metro where inventory increased in Q4. However, the 6% year-over-year gain doesn’t tell the entire story. San Francisco’s increase can be explained by a single month, December. Compared with December 2019, listings were up 28% in 2020, an increase that impacted the quarterly average (listings were down 4% in October and up a more modest 5% in November, the other two months of the quarter).Click here for more details on Nerdwallet’s Q4 First-Time Home Buyer Metro Affordability Report. Subscribe Previous: The Industry Pulse: Women’s History Month Edition Next: 2020 Delinquencies Hit Both Highs and Lows The Best Markets For Residential Property Investors 2 days agolast_img read more

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Come for the Winter, Stay for the Summer

first_imgHow Bike Parks are Changing the Game at Ski ResortsDownhill resorts throughout the region are making major investments in bike parks, and that’s good news for skiers, bikers—and beer-drinkers.Winter is still in full swing when I arrive at Massanutten Resort in McGaheysville, Va. The snowguns blast at full-throttle, showering the parking lot in faint dustings of manmade powder.I find Bike Park & Snow Sports Rental Manager Jonathan Albert and Lead Bike Park Supervisor and Bike/Ski Patroller Scott Wooten in the rental shop. It’s surprisingly busy for a Tuesday morning, so we make our way to an empty table in the lodge overlooking the slopes.“Last Saturday was our busiest day this season,” says Albert. “Business is good.”Good, but not great. Record cold spells this past winter allowed many resorts in the region to run the guns earlier and build their base quicker, but there’s no denying that the ski season these days just isn’t what it used to be.According to the 2016-2017 National Ski Areas Association End of Season Report, resorts in every region except the Rocky Mountains are witnessing decreasing or plateauing numbers of skiers and snowboarders. Even the powder Shangri La that is the Pacific West saw erratic resort attendance, which directly coincides with fickle winters.Photo: Sean LeaderIt’s in part due to that unpredictability that, in July of 2016, Massanutten joined the budding ranks of Southeastern ski resorts offering lift-access biking in the summer. Unlike many resorts, which turn to ghost towns in the off-season, Massanutten is different in that it has a timeshare member base. Prior to 2016, summer business wasn’t dead by any means, but it wasn’t thriving either.Members could swim at the water park, play mini golf, or swing around in the Bungee Dome, but all of that seemed a little kitschy in the shadow of a perfectly aesthetic mountain. For decades the resort had already been building its status as a mountain bike destination—their signature downhill YEE-HAW! and cross-country HOO-HA! races were started 20 and 30 years ago respectively. The resort also maintains a unique partnership with the Shenandoah Valley Bicycle Coalition, which manages the resort’s 30-mile Western Slope trail system. Still, those trails are notoriously rooty, rocky, and technical. Hardly the type of trail an inexperienced timeshare owner would want to ride.In 2013, Massanutten got the nudge it needed when nearby Bryce Resort, also a timeshare resort, opened up its own bike park. Seeing their neighbor’s success was just the impetus Albert and Wooten needed to push a bike park agenda forward.Photo: Sean Leader“We already had the heads and beds,” says Wooten. “The people were already here. We call that low-hanging fruit. A huge majority of our summer clients have been coming for one week every summer for 20 years. If they get exposed to mountain biking one year, we can expect them to come back and bring friends and build that momentum and resort clientele.”That momentum has been fast and furious for Massanutten, which will open later this month for its third season. With the addition of the bike park came 30 new full- and part-time jobs. Summer weekends are always busy with lessons and clinics and races. And though the greater Shenandoah Valley cycling community has the reputation of being rock garden evangelists, the Massanutten Bike Park prides itself on offering plenty of beginner trails to complement the quality singletrack both on the Western Slope and in the adjoining George Washington and Jefferson National Forests.“What is special about a bike park is it lowers that barrier of entry into the sport to show that it’s something everybody can do,” says Wooten. “Mountain biking is not a friendly sport to get into. You have to be willing to dedicate your money and energy to getting good. It can be very unapproachable. But a bike park shows it’s not just for doctors and fitness freaks. It’s for anybody.”Beech MountainPhoto: Beech MountainPayoffs of the ParkIt’s a similar tune down at Beech Mountain Resort in Beech Mountain, N.C. In the early 2000s, the resort hosted a number of National Off-Road Bicycle Association (or NORBA, the predecessor to USA Cycling) races. Then again, in 2011 and 2012, it served as the venue for the USA Cycling Mountain Bike Gravity National Championships.But when the resort went to open up a proper bike park in 2013, it became clear that those courses were suited more for intermediate and advanced riders, not beginners.“What we were seeing is that existing infrastructure was really hurting Beech’s ability to exist as a public facility because they were so focused on being race tracks,” says Elevated Trail Design co-owner Andrew Mueller. “We made some major design changes to better accommodate a wider range of riders but also to just use more of the terrain so you can fit a maximum amount of trail experiences in a small area.”Photo: Andrew MuellerThe resulting eight-trail system is a smorgasbord of technically precise rock gardens and flowy machine-built butter. For Beech Mountain Ski Patrol Director Brad Blackwell, keeping the resort’s trails fresh isn’t just about catering to newcomers in the sport; it’s about staying relevant in an ever-changing industry.“People used to want to ride the most technical, gnarly trails, but now people don’t want to buy a $9,000 bike just so they can ride it at the bike park,” he says. “They want to buy one bike and be able to do everything on it.”“They’re the same technical trail you might ride in Pisgah, but you’re not going to pedal to the top.” – Neko MulallyThe booming bike culture here feels organic, not forced—trails designed by riders for riders, the Skybar at the top and brewery at the bottom, the High Country setting and verdant forests. On a busy weekend, with a couple hundred riders threading the mountain and car racks stacked with bikes in the parking lots, the scene could almost be plucked from a little corner of Whistler. Except it’s not British Columbia. It’s uniquely Southeastern, and it’s this, says World Cup rider Neko Mulally that makes Beech what it is.“The cool thing about most of the Southeast bike parks is they’re not just making a 10-foot wide jogging path down the mountain,” he says. “They’re the same technical trail you might ride in Pisgah, but you’re not going to pedal to the top. Beech can be pretty rocky and they do a good job of working with what the mountain has and following the natural way of the terrain. By leaving that stuff intact and not building over it or getting rid of it, you keep the character of the mountain.”Beech Mountain Trail DesignPhoto: Andrew MuellerBack in 2016, Mulally started the Downhill Southeast race series to showcase some of these venues and to give downhill competitors like himself a chance to get some races in before heading to the international stage. The four-part series takes place both at resort bike parks and shuttle bike parks. This year, Beech Mountain and Massanutten will both be venues as will Windrock Bike Park near Oliver Springs, Tenn., which Mulally and his business partner Sean Leader took over in 2016.As a competitor and event organizer, Mulally says the resort model is the unicorn of downhill race venues due in large part to the amenities that are already in place: ample flat parking, lift access, electricity at the top and bottom of the hill, hotels, restaurants. He believes resorts all throughout the Southeast have a real opportunity to tap into a market that’s not only on the rise—Sports Marketing Surveys, Inc., found that mountain biking rose in popularity by 16% between 2010 and 2015—but also a lifelong sport.“If we do a good job with these races, then people will have a good taste of that venue and will want to come back and check it out another time. It’s not just a flash in the pan. Some resorts put in a zip line or a mountain coaster, but mountain biking is much more sustainable. It’s something people get into and, it’s the same with skiing, it doesn’t get old. You want to keep riding. It’s not just a once-and-done sort of activity.”Southeast Downhill SeriesPhoto: Sean LeaderPay to PlaySo why aren’t more Southeastern resorts adopting the summertime bike park model? For starters, the initial investment is big. Like, big-big.“I’ll just say it’s in the hundreds,” says Bryce Park’s Director of Mountain Operations. “That includes everything from tools to rental bikes to staff to trail building. That’s everything, all in.”But even if the resort has deep pockets, it takes an army to make a bike park great. Philip Duncan out of Slaty Fork, W.Va., was one of the primary instigators for Snowshoe Bike Park in West Virginia. For years, Duncan worked primarily as a graphic designer and marketer for the resort, but when he started getting wind of what Whistler was up to, he knew Snowshoe had to hop on board.Fortunately for Duncan, the General Manager at the time was from Whistler and he embraced the idea with open arms. In 2004, Snowshoe became the first in the Southeast to open up a resort bike park. But even with Intrawest financially backing Duncan’s initiative, the early years were absolutely a labor of love.“Me and Dave Huber and a handful of other people were super stoked and we were the driving force,” he says. “Some summers we weren’t even riding that much because we were building trail. You have to have passion in your employees to convince the powers-that-be that this is a good thing. That’s the only way we were able to do it.”Photo: WintergreenNow that the mountain biking scene is no longer in its infancy, which it arguably still was back in the early 2000s, there are numbers to support the love. In 2017, the Outdoor Industry Association found that cyclists spend over $96 billion in gear and trip-related expenses. All of that revenue contributes to nearly 850,000 jobs and generates over $6 billion in state and local taxes.Interestingly, skiers and snowboarders nationwide only spend $73 billion annually, which creates less than 700,000 jobs and $5 billion in state and local taxes. Currently, bike park visits account for less than 3% of annual resort visits in the country, according to MTBparks.com, but with over 45 million Americans identifying as cyclists, that number has room to grow.Here in the Southeast, where a mild climate dominates two-thirds of the year, it’s not hard to envision bike parks overtaking skiing in the future. But for now, says Derek Clifton at Bryce, winter is king.“We’ve never had a bad year. We’ve doubled our bike park business almost every year since we started. It just gets bigger and bigger and bigger. It won’t ever surpass the winter season, but it is the second highest revenue maker on our mountain, and it is totally 100% worth it.”last_img read more

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Curated Playlist: Indie Gold

first_imgWhen your film or video project needs an independent attitude, we’ve got you covered.The term “indie music” means a lot of things to a lot of people..and it means a lot of things to us too. Indie music toys with emotions. All of them.Good music should make you feel something and that’s exactly what we have tried to do with this curated playlist. Team any of these royalty free tracks with your project to add another dimension. From frenetic and energetic to happy-go-lucky to thoughtful and introspective, we’ve got what you’re looking for and everything in between. Put on your headphones or turn up those monitors and get ready to feel all the feelings.[This playlist is curated by Kate Cooper, Performing Rights Coordinator for PremiumBeat]last_img

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MOCA to Help Weed out Corruption

first_img “We will not only focus on the little man or on street-level criminals. We will intensify our efforts at nabbing the persons who facilitate criminal organisations –the corrupt businessmen, elected or non-elected public servants, doctors, lawyers and anyone else who benefits from the proceeds of crime. Criminal enterprises depend on a network like any other corporation,” he said. Minister of National Security, Hon. Dr. Horace Chang, says establishment of the Major Organised Crime and Anti-Corruption Agency (MOCA) as an independent body will help to address corruption within the society.The Senate, on June 8, approved the MOCA Bill, with 77 amendments. The MOCA Bill was passed in the House of Representatives in January.“We will not only focus on the little man or on street-level criminals. We will intensify our efforts at nabbing the persons who facilitate criminal organisations –the corrupt businessmen, elected or non-elected public servants, doctors, lawyers and anyone else who benefits from the proceeds of crime. Criminal enterprises depend on a network like any other corporation,” he said.Dr. Chang made the remarks during his contribution to the 2018/19 Sectoral Debate in the House of Representatives on June 12.He said corruption undermines the institutions of the State and leads to inefficiency, loss of growth and loss of economic prospects.“This Government is committed to dealing with this problem without prejudice or equivocation,” he pointed out.MOCA will be dedicated to combatting serious crimes in collaboration with other local and foreign law-enforcement agencies and strategic partners. The agency will have a dedicated and specialised team of investigators, who will investigate and prosecute the complex cases that are characteristic of organised criminal networks.In the meantime, Dr. Chang said the revision of the anti-gang law is expected to be finalised during this legislative year.“These amendments will include clarity about how a gang would be declared, special measures in court proceedings to protect witnesses, strategies to monitor gang members and other provisions to address inherent weaknesses in the current legislation,” he noted.Turning to the review of the Proceeds of Crime Act (POCA), Dr. Chang said this is being undertaken with a view to strengthening provisions and ensure compliance with the recommendations emanating from the Caribbean Financial Action Taskforce, including effective criminal sanctions for money-laundering offences.“We will be using the full force of the law to go after these criminals, taking the profit out of crime, seizing their assets and those assets that they have placed in the names of members of their families,” he pointed out.Dr. Chang said the Government will ensure that those who align themselves with organised criminal groups are punished “as we go in relentless pursuit and disruption of serious and organised crime”.He added that the Government will continue to pursue areas to improve citizen security. These include public order and law enforcement, strong anti-gang and anti-corruption strategies, targeted social-intervention initiatives in volatile communities, and transformation of the police force into a modern service. The Senate, on June 8, approved the MOCA Bill, with 77 amendments. The MOCA Bill was passed in the House of Representatives in January. Story Highlights Minister of National Security, Hon. Dr. Horace Chang, says establishment of the Major Organised Crime and Anti-Corruption Agency (MOCA) as an independent body will help to address corruption within the society.last_img read more

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For the child unborn

first_imgTu Kaisi Maa- a dance ballet on women empowerment  and New Life, a drama on cancer is being organised in the Capital by Urvashi Dance Music Art and Cultural Society together with Youwecan. Kanya Bhrun hatya (female feticide) is selectively eliminating fetus of a girl in the womb itself. Need of the hour is to enlighten the society about the sin/crime towards the mankind, its implications and remedies thereto. With this objective Urvashi Dance Academy, headed by renowned Kathak exponent Rekha Mehra, is all set to produce and present a Ballet titled Tu Kaisi Maa?. It is proposed to produce the ballet alongside the visual effects in the background. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’The Play is called New Life,A drama on Cancer. It  will be performed on December 12 at , Chinmay Mission, Lodhi Road, in the Capital. In Hindu religion, killing someone without a fight has been known as Hatya or murder and has been despised as an heinous sin/crime, requiring stringent repentance/punishment. Men being the stronger sex have ruled like a lion king in the jungle with their prowess. However, history is full of examples of women proving themselves stronger morally, culturally and ethically. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixThe word Maa(mother) remind one of Goddesses. In the same religious society how come innocent fetus is destroyed in the ovarian cage itself, even before seeing the daylight? Most ironical fact is that this crime is deliberately allowed by the mother herself, after detection of the fetal gender through medical means and saddest part is that majority of such cases involve an enthusiastic participation of women, both old and young. Family pressures apart, unplanned pregnancy is generally the reason behind abortion. Another interesting fact is coming to the fore and is that of increase in the number of cases of rape in India, mainly due to diminishing women : men ratio. Where: Chinmoy Mission When: December 12last_img read more

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