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BUSINESS
January 21, 2012 | By Alejandro Lazo, Los Angeles Times
Home sales rose nationally in December, marking the third consecutive month that the market has shown improvement. Previously owned homes were sold at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.61 million units, up 5% from November and 3.6% from December 2010, the National Assn. of Realtors said Friday. "The market for single-family homes picked up in the second half of 2011, after being stuck near the bottom for nearly three years," Patrick Newport, an economist with IHS Global Insight, wrote in a note to clients.
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BUSINESS
February 27, 2010 | By Alejandro Lazo
If you're still having trouble selling your house, you're not alone. Sales of previously owned homes in January stumbled considerably for the second consecutive month. The National Assn. of Realtors in Washington said Friday that sales fell 7.2%. January sales were the lowest since June but 11.5% higher than in January 2009. Previously owned homes make up the bulk of the nation's buying activity. Economists said that last month's sales drop from December was another sign the market is critically weak and unlikely to recover robustly this year as the potential for more foreclosures looms.
BUSINESS
June 17, 2012 | By Kenneth R. Harney
WASHINGTON — In the real estate brokerage field they're often known as "setups" or "pinball" homes, and this spring's improving conditions in some markets could be stimulating more of them. A setup or pinball property is a house listed with an unrealistically high asking price that pulls in lots of visits by agents and shoppers, but no offers. The problem is this: Real estate agents, including even the listing agent, are using the overpriced house as a negative example to sell similar homes in the area that carry lower asking prices.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 6, 2013 | By Jean Merl
The tally of homes reported destroyed in the Powerhouse fire rose dramatically Thursday, as authorities discovered 24 homes were burned out, more than double the previous estimate. Los Angeles County Fire Inspector Anthony Akins attributed the rise in damage to a survey by ground crews, who were able to explore the burn area more fully on Wednesday. Akins said he believes some of the additional destroyed homes are believed to be in a canyon near Lake Hughes.  Fire personnel have the fire 78% surrounded and expect full containment around midnight Monday.
BUSINESS
June 13, 2013 | By Andrew Khouri
Home prices in the upscale Bay Area swelled last month, but tight inventory kept sales below average, driving bidding wars and frustrating would-be buyers. The median sale price for a home in the nine-county region hit $519,000 in May -- a 29.8% increase from the same month a year earlier -- real estate firm DataQuick said Thursday. That was a nearly 2% increase from April. Buyers purchased 8,541 new and existing houses and condos, down 4% from May 2012, but up 12.1% from April.
BUSINESS
April 10, 2012 | By Alejandro Lazo
A nonprofit group has filed a bias complaint against Wells Fargo accusing the lender of poorly maintaining the foreclosed homes it owns in what the nonprofit calls Latino and black neighborhoods compared with those it owns in white areas. The complaint by the National Fair Housing Alliance to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development comes after the group released a report last week concluding that in nine big American cities, foreclosed homes were taken much better care of in what it calls white neighborhoods than in those with residents of color.
BUSINESS
October 12, 2012 | By Alejandro Lazo
Foreclosed homes made up just a sixth of the Southland's resale market last month - a level not seen in nearly five years and a major reason the market is rebounding so rapidly. Foreclosures accounted for just 16.4% of the resale market in September - a substantial decline from the same month last year when foreclosures accounted for 32.3% of the market, real estate firm DataQuick reported Friday. The decline is even more significant when compared to the worst of the region's foreclosure crisis, in February 2009, when foreclosed properties made up 56.7% of resales.
BUSINESS
April 22, 2013 | By Roger Vincent
A vacant lot in Century City, one of the most densely developed neighborhoods in Los Angeles, will be filled with single-family homes by its new owner. The 1.75-acre parcel at the corner of Century Park West and Solar Way was purchased for about $13 million by an affiliate of Los Angeles developer California Landmark Group, real estate brokerage HFF said. Century City has nearly 10 million square feet of offices, two major hotels and a regional mall. In its compact 0.3 square mile west of Beverly Hills it also has about 2,000 residences, most of them condominiums, according to the Century City Chamber of Commerce.
BUSINESS
March 31, 2013 | By Stuart Pfeifer, Los Angeles Times
KB Home has endured some rough patches during its 56 years in business. There have been real estate downturns, painful recessions, even the criminal prosecution of its former chief executive. But things hardly looked darker for the home builder than they did in the tough years that followed the downturn in the real estate and financial markets. The company posted losses in six consecutive fiscal years - 2007 to 2012 - and watched its stock price fall to its lowest point in 20 years.
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