Tax Credit Expires; Home Sales Dip

Weekly Market Activity Report

Home sales in the Twin Cities housing market took another dip as the hangover from the tax credit expiration continued. For the week ending May 22, there were 624 pending sales, a precipitous drop of 42.5 percent from a year ago.

The biggest drops in sales since the credit ended can be seen in the traditional seller market (i.e., anything that’s not a foreclosure or short sale) and in the middle price ranges from $150,000 to $350,000. Pending sales have dropped in those ranges from 1,085 the week the credit ended to 384 for the week ending May 22. In sum, it may be a difficult summer market for home sellers.

The good news is that new supply is also slowing, which means the market
is already self-correcting to avoid a surge in unneeded inventory. New listings fell to 1,581 for the same reporting week, a decline of 15.8 percent from this time last year.

The Supply-Demand Ratio has been updated for June and shows a figure of 5.05, which means there are 5.05 homes for sale for each buyer in the month. That’s a 10.9 percent increase over the mark seen a year ago and is a result of the decline in buyer activity.

Minneapolis-St. Paul Real Estate Market: May 2010

Where has the Twin Cities real estate market been and where is it heading? This monthly summary provides an overview of current trends and projections for future activity. Narrated by Matt Strobl (2010 Treasurer of the Minneapolis Area Association of REALTORS®), audio recorded by Zach Foty and video produced by Chelsie Foty.
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The Beautiful Bow Window

The bow window has always struck me as a wonderful architectural feature. I love its curve within the four or five panes that typically make up a bow window. The curve adds a visual softness to what is so often an angular and straight lined building. The “bow” or curve feature allows more light to enter the home and provides a wider view to look out upon.

I saw this home in St. Paul earlier this week. It not only has a bow window, but the upper panes feature beveled glass. Beveled glass has angled edges. One benefit of beveled glass is that the angled edges act as prisms in the sunlight, providing a spectrum of colors not present in regular clear glass. Imagine a rainbow of color streaming in your home through a beveled window! This color diffraction also highlights the beveled glass, making it more of a focal point within the room than other glass. An antique beveled glass window will give this magical effect with both natural and artificial light sources.

Most, if not all, beveled glass windows were made by hand in the 19th and early 20th centuries. There were many time-consuming steps involved in the process, thereby making this type of glass expensive. Even so, Americans embraced these visually stunning windows and, as such, our country produced the widest variety and best quality of these elegant windows. An antique beveled glass window is superior to a modern version due to the differences in glass composition, the thicker glass which allows for a more refractory surface on each piece, and the inherent extraordinary craftsmanship of a hand-made bevel that allows for greater prismatic light.

A bow window in a St. Paul, MN home
St. Paul, MN home with beveled bow window

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