March 17, 2013 |
Invitation Homes bought one of its first fixer-uppers in the San Fernando Valley just last May, a three-bedroom steps from a sought-after school in north Granada Hills. More than 200 homes later, the company's Dodger Blue "for rent" signs are a fixture in the Valley -- markers for a massive Wall Street wager on the housing recovery. Created last year by private equity titan Blackstone Group, Invitation Homes has spent about $3.5 billion buying 20,000 houses in nine U.S. markets, including Southern California.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 18, 2013 |
SACRAMENTO - "There's no place to go but up," asserted Jim Brulte, whose mission is to save the California Republican Party. "We're on the way back. " Brulte told me that in 2000 at the Republican National Convention in Philadelphia. He was the state Senate minority leader then. And was he ever wrong! The California GOP did make a brief resurgence under Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, who was never fully accepted or appreciated by party activists. But in recent years, it has been going down, down, down.
February 16, 2013 |
Bill Sepe has gotten used to rejection. The 28-year-old Rancho Cucamonga native has put in nearly 200 unsuccessful offers since August on Inland Empire homes, varying from typical suburban ranches to classic craftsman homes. All this anguish comes in pursuit of a modest home in the exurb of San Bernardino County, the epicenter of the Southern California housing crash. Plummeting values here sparked a vicious wave of foreclosures. But it's precisely because prices fell so far here that Sepe can't buy a house now. In a sharp irony, many would-be homeowners in hard-hit markets can't compete with a flood of all-cash offers from investors, some backed by Wall Street war chests.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 5, 2013 |
SACRAMENTO - Desperate to return to relevance, the battered California Republican Party is looking for salvation in a shrewd dealmaker and prolific fundraiser once known for advancing his party's interests in a Capitol dominated by Democrats. Jim Brulte, a former Senate and Assembly minority leader forced from the Legislature by term limits in 2004, is the odds-on favorite to be chosen state GOP leader at the party's convention here next month. His plans for a rebirth focus, at the moment, on shoring up the basics: the fundraising operation, get-out-the-vote apparatus, data analysis capabilities and recruitment efforts.
January 30, 2013 |
Unemployment rates fell in 290 metro areas throughout the country in December from a year earlier, with the biggest drop occurring in Las Vegas-Paradise, Nev., which was pummeled by the housing bust. That region's unadjusted jobless rate fell 3.3 percentage points since December 2011 to 10%, according to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Among the 49 metro areas with a population of 1 million or more, the Inland Empire recorded the highest unemployment rate, at 10.9%.
December 23, 2012 |
Inland Empire Health Plan, a not-for-profit public health plan serving residents of Riverside and San Bernardino counties, will move its headquarters from San Bernardino to Rancho Cucamonga. IEHP has agreed to rent 207,000 square feet in the Atrium at Empire Lakes where it will consolidate its operations from five buildings into one, real estate broker Josh Gorin of Studley said. The 15-year lease with landlord Torchlight Investors is valued at about $84 million. The health plan is a joint powers entity serving 565,000 residents through government-sponsored programs including Medi-Cal.
December 16, 2012 |
Hey, Dodgers, Arte Moreno is calling you out! A little mano a mano action. I'm not sure if his Angels are playing in the American League West or in some imaginary division where his Angels line up across the Dodgers every night. He rolled some serious dice Saturday and signed slugging outfielder Josh Hamilton to a five-year contract for $125 million, and what did he say to The Times' Bill Plaschke ? “The Dodgers, Merry Christmas, I personally can hardly wait to play them,” he said.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 10, 2012 |
Stirred by a decade of astronomical growth, economic heartache and the rising political influence of Latinos, the Inland Empire proved treacherous territory last week for a Republican Party that just a decade ago considered it the new GOP frontier. Voters in Riverside and San Bernardino counties on Tuesday elected three Democrats to Congress - two Latinos and a gay Asian American - after having sent only two Democrats to Washington in the last four decades. Before the election, Republicans represented the city of Riverside in Congress, the state Senate and the Assembly.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 19, 2012 |
Washington's election-year power struggle has spilled into two hotly contested congressional races in the Inland Empire region, where results were once as predictable as a hot summer day in Hemet. Rejiggered political districts and the GOP's declining membership have given Democrats a shot in both races next month - victories the party is counting on in its effort to pick up 25 additional seats and recapture control of the House. The high stakes have triggered millions of dollars in spending by the parties and independent groups trying to nationalize the races into a referendum on such hyper-charged Washington issues as President Obama's healthcare overhaul and the steep tax cuts proposed by GOP vice presidential nominee Rep. Paul Ryan.
October 12, 2012 |
Competition for lower-priced homes in California is so hot that the number of cheaper homes available for sale has sunk more than 40% in the last year, pushing out many would-be buyers. Homes that sold for $313,200 or less were the most competitive type of home nationally, but nowhere did inventory in that price range drop more than in the Golden State, according to a report released Thursday by real estate website Zillow. In some parts of the Inland Empire, the supply of homes on the market is down to about a month's worth, real estate agents say. Economists typically consider a six-month supply to be a healthy market.