New Developments in Home Mortgages and Highland Park Real Estate

Real Estate Week in Review

Local News

New developments are coming in Highland Park real estate, including new plans on- and off-street parking at the Ford site to encourage growth and ease congestion. Also, the city council has denied an attempt by neighbors to block the 735 Cleveland Ave building, a 4-story new construction site. No zoning changes or variances has been required (Highland Villager). Stay tuned to the Miller Grossman website for updates on these and other projects.

A new real estate venture, Stadium Partners LLC, has purchased Hubert’s Cafe and Sports Bar near the Vikings stadium, the first example of stadium fueled development (MSP Business Journal, June 5). The venture is planning cosmetic tweaks and a new name: the original Hubert’s.

Hillcrest has sold 6 northeast Minneapolis developments (Business Journal, June 4). The portfolio includes Crown Center, home to Blu Dot Furniture and Bauhaus Brew Labs; Frost Building, home to Dogwood Coffee Co.; and the renovated 1515 Central Ave, home to Sociable Cider Werks.

National News

It was announced on Thursday that the US has added 1 million new jobs since the start of the year, including 280,000 in May (CNN Money, June 5), and 3 million new jobs over the last 3 years (Associated Press, June 5). “It’s timely progress for the economy as the Federal Reserve board meets on June 17. The Fed is widely expected not to raise its main interest rate in June, but Fed Chair Janet Yellen will speak to the press and offer her outlook on the economy. If conditions continue to improve, interest rates could rise for the first time in about a decade — another healthy sign for America’s economy” (CNN Money).

“Those additional paychecks helped increase spending on housing” — through the first four months of this year, new construction home sales have gone up 23.7% compared to this time last year, illustrating a continuing demand for homes (AP).

Also in national news, the Supreme Court on Monday determined that homeowners who are underwater on their mortgage cannot void a second loan (Associated Press, June 1). This means, even if the home isn’t worth what they owe on the primary mortgage, bankrupt homeowners cannot “strip off” a second loan.

Finally, US Regulators are warning that many ads regarding reverse home mortgages are misleading, and “don’t tell the whole story.” Read more here.

Another Economic Boon to the Saint Paul Area

Real Estate Week in Review

University of Minnesota

Fox9 reported this week on the University of Minnesota housing improvement plan (“8 objectives in U of M housing improvement plan,” May 3). The plan is to make on-campus living more attractive to students, and their budgets. Improvements include:

“- Renovate or replace Pioneer Hall
– Guarantee campus housing for all first-year students meeting the application deadline
– Modernize “Superblock” dining facilities
– Increase the number of first-year students living in residence halls another year
– Increase demand on St. Paul campus housing (Bailey Hall)
– Ensure transfer students “receive housing support”
– Develop second-year experience programs with non-U of M housing partners
– $3 million in safety, efficiency and comfort improvements for Greek housing”.

At this time, “it’s unclear exactly how much all the improvements will cost, and who is fronting it.”

In other University news, Sanford-Brown announced on Wednesday their campuses in Twin Cities area will close after current students graduate. 14 sites will close, including locations in Mendota Heights and Brooklyn Center. The decision is said to focus their resources on universities in Colorado, Atlanta and Houston.

Stadium News

The Saint Paul Saints are ready for opening day at CHS field, reports REJournals.com, offering a virtual tour. The Saints will take the field in their new Lowertown location for the first time on May 21. It is set to be “another economic boon to the Saint Paul area.”

The Star Tribune reported this week the Ryan Companies proposal for a new Radisson Red hotel near the Vikings stadium. “The developer has submitted a proposal to the City of Minneapolis for a five-story, 164-room Radisson Red hotel on one of the two liner parcels behind the new Wells Fargo towers that Ryan is currently building.”

Radisson Red

Residential Real Estate

The Star Tribune reported last week that 25% of US renters are using 50% of their income for housing (“1 in 4 US renters must use half their pay for housing costs,” May 1). With interest rates low and the rental rates high, many buyers are finding it is more affordable to purchase a home than rent one, along with the numerous benefits of homeownership. Contact Miller Grossman (651-434-7887 or MillerGrossman@CBBurnet.com) to discuss your options and begin your search.

In Other News

Plans for the 159 unit mixed use development at 100 Hennepin Ave in Minneapolis were unveiled this week. The six story building will include a coffee shop, possibly a restaurant, and 11 walk-up townhomes along 1st Avenue North.

100 Hennepin

Local nightlife favorite Cowboy Jack’s is set to take over part of the now defunct Epic Nightclub (which closed in 2013 after a fatal shooting), where the new Shout House occupies the first floor. It is set to include a bar, booths and tables, and a 2nd floor patio. There is no set open date at this time. Cowboy Jack’s currently operates nine locations in three states, most in the Twin Cities.

The Tea Garden in Uptown has a new owner, new name and new look, set to be a more elegant experience catered to a wider audience. The selection of teas will jump from 50 to over 100. Says Steve Day, owner of Plymouth-based general contractor SullivanDay Construction, the focal point of Sencha is a round, 11-foot tea bar, topped off by a rotating tea rack overhead. The overall effect is “wicked cool.”