Daily News for Commercial Real Estate & Business – August 17, 2011

Here are the news articles you might find interesting today for commercial real estate and business:

Maricopa County raises property-tax rate by 18% Maricopa County on Monday increased its property-tax rate by 18 percent for fiscal 2012. But due to decreased property values, county officials believe most residents will see minimal change in what they owe in the county primary tax portion of their tax bill. The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors unanimously decided to raise its property-tax rate from $1.05 to $1.24 per $100 of net assessed valuation. View article...

Low Scottsdale lease rates attract new downtown businesses Low commercial lease rates have attracted two new businesses - a couple's first small business and the revamped version of a half-century-old photography retailer - to downtown Scottsdale. Steve and Jeanine Rometty are planning to open Old Town Candy and Toys in early October at 4000 N. Scottsdale Road, near Grimaldi's Pizzeria. She has been a teacher for the past 17 years, while he has worked for Todd's Porcelain & Fiberglass Repair for 22 years. View article...

McCarthy Building lands $7M deal at Yuma Regional Medical Center McCarthy Building Cos. Southwest in Tempe has been awarded a $7 million project to add 36 inpatient beds to the Yuma Regional Medical Center. "The decision to expand the fourth-floor space at this time is the result of consistently high winter patient volumes, especially in 2011," said YRMC President and CEO Pat Walz. View article...

Phoenix light-rail extension may be getting back on track When the recession started biting hard into the region's transportation plans, the light-rail extension due to open first went toward the back of the list. Workers were weeks away from digging into northwest Phoenix streets in July 2009 when a sharp drop in Phoenix transit-tax revenue forced officials to push the starting date back indefinitely and suspend contracts. View article...

Paradise Valley among top-earning towns in America Paradise Valley has been named one of the top-earning towns in country by CNNMoney. According to the rankings at CNNMoney.com, the median family income in the ritzy Phoenix suburb is $195,637. That's higher than all but 10 cities or towns in America. View article...

Buyers Wary of Building Bubble Some of the nation's largest pension funds are starting to back away from trophy properties in the most expensive real-estate markets over concerns a new bubble is inflating. After property prices crashed during the financial crisis, pension funds - among the biggest investors in commercial real estate - turned their investment strategies away from risky speculative projects and toward properties considered "core," well-leased buildings that are seen as low risk due to their stable income, in cities such as New York, Washington and San Francisco. View article...

HOUSING:
Phoenix housing recovery might take until 2016
Scottsdale economist Elliott Pollack doesn't expect a recovery in the local housing market until 2015 or 2016, and the commercial real estate markets until 2014 or 2015, as Arizona's job market and population growth continue their slow recovery from the recession. View article...

Phoenix new home sales on the decline New home sales are down from last year in the Valley, according to the Phoenix Housing Market Letter released today by RL Brown Reports. There were 488 new home sales in metro Phoenix in July, a drop of 8 percent from 534 in July 2010. The decline was steeper for year-to-date sales: There were 3,554 new home closings through the first seven months of 2011, a drop of 31 percent from 5,157 for the same period in 2010. View article...

The Financial Mindset of Underwater Borrowers: Survey The term ‘underwater' has become common industry jargon in today's marketplace of depressed home values and high loan balances, and it's increasingly making its way into the everyday vocabulary of consumers. View article...

Industry's Past-Due Mortgages Climb Above 6.5 Million Lender Processing Services (LPS) issued a report Tuesday which puts the number of mortgages that are delinquent or in foreclosure at 6,538,000. The company's assessment is based on mortgage performance statistics derived from its loan-level database of nearly 40 million mortgage loans through the end of July. View article...

Feel free to contact me regarding any of these stories, the current market, distressed commercial real estate opportunities or your property.

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