February 14, 2009 |
Like many casualties of the housing collapse, Adam and Kimberley Roche had a horrible 2008 as their window installation business, which once had 50 workers, ran out of projects. By November they had no money, no employees and no banks that would lend them a hand. "We had absolutely no work for six months," said Adam Roche. "That was a scary place to be."
January 3, 2009 |
What will new homes look like after this recession, which has brought construction nearly to a halt? Consumers who have learned the bitter lessons about declining home values, burdensome debt and ephemeral retirement savings values may well demand houses different from the ones that dot our recently built neighborhoods. History hints that this downturn could change our tastes.
October 22, 2008 |
Wachovia Corp. is seeking at least $358 million in a lawsuit against six home builders including KB Home, Toll Bros. Inc. and Lennar Corp. over a failed Nevada development. Wachovia Bank, a unit of Charlotte, N.C.-based Wachovia, sued in Manhattan federal court. Wachovia said land developer Focus Kyle and eight builders, two of which weren't sued, defaulted on guarantees to develop a planned community in Las Vegas. The $565-million development was to be called Kyle Canyon Gateway, with 16,000 homes on 1,710 acres, according to Commercial Property News Magazine.
September 30, 2008 |
Home builders, buffeted by at least $19 billion in losses since 2006, plan to ask Congress to help stop the bleeding. The industry will ask lawmakers to pass a $15,000 tax credit for all home buyers, replacing a smaller incentive enacted this year that they contend failed to stimulate demand. "Our members are really hurting," said Jerry Howard, chief executive of the National Assn. of Home Builders. "The tax credit passed in July seems to have failed to have sparked interest.
September 27, 2008 |
It has been so long since the sound has been heard in the North Korean capital that at first it seems an illusion, a buzzing in the ear perhaps. But no, that really is a power saw, and that pounding really is a hammer at work at a construction site. By the dizzying standards of Asia's exploding mega-cities, the construction here is nothing you could call a real estate boom.
September 24, 2008 |
A group of construction workers has filed suit against a San Francisco-based home-building company, claiming that they were coerced for years into working unpaid overtime. In a federal court lawsuit, the 14 plaintiffs also allege a variety of other violations, including being asked to sign blank time sheets, skip breaks and travel without compensation, attorneys said. They are seeking payment of the wages they claim to be owed, but they did not specify an amount. The suit was filed in U.S.
August 8, 2008 |
One of the biggest construction workers unions on Thursday warned of more housing problems ahead -- particularly for borrowers living in new-home communities -- and lays much of the blame on the nation's home builders. Homeowners who purchased at newer developments are more likely to have 100%-financed, adjustable-rate mortgages because of builders' efforts to push risky subprime loans, according to a report from the Laborers' International Union of North America.
July 24, 2008 |
As homeowners lose their houses to foreclosure, builders worry about losing their shirts. Many small builders are struggling to stay in business, and larger, publicly traded development companies are reeling under huge losses as lenders tighten credit and housing sales stall. On Wednesday, Ryland Group Inc. of Calabasas reported a second-quarter loss of $241.6 million, seven times higher than the average estimate of a Bloomberg survey.
July 13, 2008 |
With his brawny build, he looks a little like Mr. Clean. Television viewers know him as Mike Holmes, star of "Holmes on Homes," who swoops in wearing his trademark overalls and white undershirt to rescue homeowners who have allegedly been wronged by unscrupulous contractors. His show, which just moved from Discovery Home to TLC on Saturday nights, tracks how Holmes and his crew expose shoddy construction and "make it right," an ethic that the Canadian native feels strongly about.
July 1, 2008 |
State law enforcement officials are investigating whether 70 retirees and other investors in Northern California were bilked when they put up $6.4 million for construction loans on Malibu land that may be undevelopable. The investors have foreclosed on the land, which is worth just a fraction of its appraised value as prime home building property. But they're still trying to figure out where their money went. "Nobody knows what happened to it," according to Fred I. Mann, 77, a retired advertising executive who said he invested more than $500,000 in the transaction and is facing a total loss.