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NATIONAL
March 27, 2013 | By Michael Muskal
About 33 houses, many summer or weekend getaways, are in danger after a major landslide hit Whidbey Island in the state of Washington. No injuries have been reported by the slide of mud and debris that rolled through the area near Alderwood Street and South Fircrest Avenue just after 4 a.m. Wednesday, officials told local news media outlets. Officials were not immediately available for further comment because they were at the scene, spokesmen said by telephone. The slide took out a road, Driftwood Way, which is closest to the water, isolating 16 homes, Island County Sheriff Mark C. Brown told KOMO television.
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BUSINESS
September 12, 2012 | By Alejandro Lazo
New data show the number of underwater borrowers in the U.S. is continuing to decline as home prices improve, meaning one of the most stubborn roadblocks to the housing market's recovery is slowly lifting. The Santa Ana research firm CoreLogic estimates that the number of homeowners in the U.S. who owed more on their homes than those properties are worth totaled 10.8 million American households, or about 22.3% of all homes with mortgages, at the end of the second quarter. That was an improvement from the first quarter, when there were about 11.4 million underwater homes, amounting to about 23.7% of all mortgaged homes.
NATIONAL
August 17, 2013 | By Benjamin Mueller
An erratic, fast-moving wildfire raged through sagebrush and pine trees and threatened the Idaho mountain resort community of Sun Valley on Saturday as residents of 1,300 homes in the area were ordered to leave. Evacuation orders, which already included homes in drainages and foothills west of Hailey and north of Ketchum in central Idaho, were expected to spread Saturday to homes in the west Ketchum area, said Bronwyn Nickel, spokeswoman for Blaine County. Nickel said one home and one smaller structure had already been destroyed, and others were “definitely at risk.” The blaze burned across 92,754 acres Saturday, up dramatically from the 64,236 acres burning Friday, a spokeswoman for Beaver Creek Fire, Shawna Hartman, said.
NATIONAL
January 20, 2012 | By Ricardo Lopez, Los Angeles Times
A wind-whipped brush fire in a rural valley between Carson City and Reno forced more than 10,000 residents to flee and destroyed more than 20 homes, Nevada officials said Thursday night. Gov. Brian Sandoval declared a state of emergency shortly before 5 p.m. By evening, the blaze had grown to nearly 6 square miles. "To say we're in the thick of battle is an understatement," Reno Fire Chief Michael Hernandez told reporters earlier. The news conference itself was almost postponed because authorities were set to widen the evacuation area to include the high school where the briefing took place.
NATIONAL
June 16, 2013 | By Matt Pearce
Four firefighters were injured Saturday and more than 100 homes near downtown Indianapolis had to be evacuated after a recycling facility caught fire and collapsed. None of the injuries were serious, and by Sunday residents were allowed to return home. The blaze took eight hours to control Saturday as more than two-dozen 30-gallon propane tanks continually exploded and the fire sent up an acrid cloud that could be seen for miles over the city, officials said. Nearby buildings and dumpsters momentarily caught fire as strong winds blew the embers from the blaze to the surrounding area.
NATIONAL
June 29, 2012 | By Tony Barboza
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -- Hundreds of families from neighborhoods torched by the massive Waldo Canyon wildfire met with local officials Thursday night to learn whether their homes had survived. In an emotional meeting at a University of Colorado events center, Colorado Springs officials distributed printouts with addresses marking which houses had been destroyed or damaged, and which had survived, attendees said. At least 346 homes were destroyed on some 35 streets in the Mountain Shadows neighborhood, Mayor Stephen Bach said earlier in the day. He warned that the toll could grow as more areas are inspected.  PHOTOS: U.S. wildfires 2012 Byron and Rebekah Largent had already heard that their home had burned but attended the night meeting to support friends and neighbors -- some of whom broke down when they got the bad news.
BUSINESS
April 30, 2012 | By Michelle Maltais
Android phone users looking for a place to rent are getting a new app from Zillow. Launching today, Zillow Rentals for Android gives apartment seekers an app that puts on-the-spot comparison power in their hands. It gives access to the real estate information site's estimates on more than 100 million homes and apartments in the U.S. "Renters shop differently from buyers and look at many homes quickly, in specific locations, in a short amount of time," said Jeremy Wacksman, Zillow's vice president of consumer marketing and mobile.
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.
BUSINESS
January 15, 2013 | By Alejandro Lazo, Los Angeles Times
Southern California's housing market ended the year with sharp gains, rounding out the first solid year of sustained improvement after nearly five years of real estate malaise - and helping set up further improvement in 2013. The region's median home price registered a sizable 19.6% pop in December compared with the same month last year to hit $323,000, real estate firm DataQuick reported Tuesday. A record level of cash buyers flooded into the market and more move-up homes sold last month.
NATIONAL
May 19, 2013 | By Matt Pearce, This post has been updated, as indicated below.
A series of tornadoes raked a broad swath of the Midwest on Sunday, destroying homes and a trailer park in Oklahoma, killing one person and injuring at least 21 others, officials said. As night fell, rescuers with flashlights picked through the rubble of a trailer park in Shawnee, Okla., that was heavily damaged in the storm, as were a number of homes across the state. [Updated, May 19, 9:36 p.m.: The Pottawatomie County sheriff's office said late Sunday that one body had been found at the trailer park, the Associated Press reported.
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