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Dubai Real Estate

Dec 27

Real Estate Deals 2010

by Mary Teresa Fowler
Best Real Estate Deals in 2010

After Christmas, shoppers follow Boxing Day sales and all the other reduced prices to be found at year's end. Meanwhile, the real industry is reflecting on the more memorable deals of 2010. Of course, new home owners will be remembering their own private real estate transactions. As well, more than one commercial transaction during this year made a powerful impression.

Commercial Real Estate

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) predicts a more stabilized market in 2011 as well as a decrease in commercial vacancies. When commercial assets reach stabilization, owners are pleased with the outcome. The properties are generating profits rather than eating away at an owner's assets.

Denver, Colorado

This thriving Colorado city saw commercial real estate investments double year-over-year in 2010. In fact, Denver made the top ten list of preferred markets for investment during the past twelve months. Since many Denver commercial assets are stabilized, investors are targeting these properties.

Within this market, buyers cannot expect to find a good deal in terms of low prices. Yet investors are willing to pay a higher price for a stabilized asset. The purchase still adds up to a wise investment in the long term. During the coming year, Denver's commercial market is expected to see more big deals. The anticipated early 2011 sale of the 1800 Larimer building for $400 per square foot will be a record breaker (the 'per-square-foot record' for the sale of an office building in Denver).

Denver Commercial Real Estate Closes 2010 with a Bang

Hartford, Connecticut

In July 2010, Connecticut River Plaza, a well-known office property in downtown Hartford, was sold for $6,666,667 to a limited liability corporation in New York. This sale was one of the most anticipated transactions in the recent history of downtown Hartford’s commercial office market.

Winnipeg, Manitoba

During the past year, commercial property sales and leasing broke records in Winnipeg, Manitoba. This Canadian city can boast about $544.7 million of property sales between January-October, 2010. Winnipeg's yearly average for commercial sales is $300 million. One of the year's biggest sales transactions was the purchase of GEM Equities/B&M Land Co. property (three high-rise apartment blocks) by Toronto-based Timbercreek Asset Management for a reported $100 million.

Banner year for property purchases

Luxury Markets

New York City, New York

Throughout 2010, the NYC hotel industry was a vibrant market – the site of tons of transactions and substantial deals. In September, JRK Hotel Group sold the Hotel Roger Williams for $90 million (and $4.5 million in additional costs) to LaSalle Hotel Properties. The luxury hotel market is rebounding and investors have confidence in the Manhattan hotel scene.

Montreal, Quebec

Montreal has a smaller luxury market than New York City. Yet there is a growing demand for high-end condos. The sale of the penthouse at the Ritz Carlton Montreal Hotel and Residences brought in $13 million plus taxes – the highest price ever for a residential property in Quebec.

Distressed Properties

Of course, most real estate deals in 2010 were outside the luxury market. Interested buyers had abundant opportunities to pick up affordable properties. Even investors wanting to buy into the New York City hospitality industry were able to pick up distressed hotels at bargain prices. As well, home buyers across the country were paying discount prices for foreclosures.

Did You Find A Good Real Estate Deal In The Past Year?

Image courtesy of bajarealestategroup.net

Dec 1

Residential Energy Property Credit

by Mary Teresa Fowler
Residential Energy Property Credit

U.S. homeowners have only until December 31, 2010 to take advantage of the current Residential Energy Property Credit. This 'green' program is available to home owners who make energy-efficient improvements to their houses. New homes or rentals are not eligible for this credit and the home must be the person's principal residence.

Federal Tax Credit

This property credit is about to expire and qualifying items must be bought and installed before the end of 2010. People can make purchases such as heating and cooling systems, insulation, roofing, windows and doors, water heaters, and biomass stoves. The credit is a dollar-to-dollar reduction on the amount of tax owed and home owners can receive up to 30% of the cost – up to $1500 per home. Two or more unmarried people living in the same home with joint ownership are each eligible for the tax credit on money spent for improvements. Yet the total credit cannot exceed $1500 for a single home.

The credit includes installation costs in certain categories but not for all purchases. For example, installation costs are covered for heating, ventilating, and air conditioning (HVAC). The tax credit, however, does not include installation costs for insulation. As well, not all ENERGY STAR qualified products are included in this initiative. Homeowners are advised to check out the rules of eligibility for this credit.

Associated Components

People are wondering if the tax credit applies to components associated with a product. If a homeowner purchases a biomass stove, will the cost of a hearth, stovepipe, and chimney be eligible for the credit? The IRS administers this program and they have not issued any written guidelines about eligible components.

Homeowners can contact the IRS for the official word. Yet it has been widely suggested informally that components are covered if they are critical pieces of the product's energy efficiency. If the component can be used with a non-qualified product, it does not meet eligibility guidelines for this credit.

How To Apply

For products installed in 2010, homeowners must file the IRS Form 5695. They must submit the form with their 2010 taxes by April 15, 2011. Homeowners must save receipts and the Manufacturer's Certification Statement for their records. A Manufacturer’s Certification Statement is a signed statement from the manufacturer certifying that the product or component qualifies for the tax credit. Manufacturers should provide these certifications on their website.

Income Limit

There is no income limit with this program but it is a 'non-refundable' credit. Homeowners' credits cannot exceed their tax liability (the amount they pay in taxes).

Future Energy

If a homeowner cannot make the December 31 deadline, there are other opportunities to take advantage of energy-efficiency programs. Indeed, new homes and second homes (as well as existing homes) are considered for a tax credit in two additional incentives. The programs vary and cover from 30% of the cost with no upper limit to 30% of the cost and up to $500 per .5 kW of power capacity. These credits do not expire until December 31, 2016. Learn more about Federal Tax Credits for Consumer Energy Efficiency.

Last chance for homeowners to get green tax credit

Have You Applied For The Residential Energy Property Credit?

Image courtesy of billshrink.com

Oct 4

Looking Good in Dubai

by Mary Teresa Fowler

Many things look good in Dubai – at least, according to tourist statistics. Dubai is the one of the most visited cities in the world. As one of the seven United Arab Emirates (UAE), Dubai is expecting to accommodate 15 million tourists by 2015.

Looking Good

Everything looked promising today as Cityscape Global 2010 (the world’s largest business-to-business real estate investment and development event) opened in Dubai. Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai, presided over the opening ceremony of Cityscape Global at the Dubai World Trade Centre. The city has hosted this event for the past nine years. This four-day show spotlights emerging trends around the globe.

No Problems

Within the next two years, residential property prices are expected to stabilize in Dubai. Once again, investors are taking a serious look at the city's real estate. A leading consultant firm does not foresee any problems with the Dubai market.

“As long as the property supply doesn’t surpass the demand too much, we should see a stabilization of Dubai’s residential property prices within the next two to three years," explains a major consultant firm.

New Developments

By the end of 2011, Dubai is expected to see 50,000 new residential developments. Maybe the scale of development will not reach that exact number. Yet developments are now in the works that were on hold. As well, many buyers say that they plan to stay in Dubai for at least 3-5 years. Despite the downward trend in the past six months, things are looking up for this United Arab Emirate. An industry leader offered an explanation for the decline in Dubai residential rentals and sales in recent months.

"This downturn probably was mainly due to the holy month of Ramadan and summer vacations as well as buyers adopting a wait-and-see attitude. Many of the prudent investors were in anticipation that the prices would fall further, or the mortgage rates would get cheaper,” said a top consultant.

Good News

Banks are lowering mortgage rates in Dubai – sometimes to 5.99 per cent. The good news for Dubai buyers is reflected in pockets elsewhere around the world but Dubai is the darling in development at this time. Recently, there have been major encouraging announcements including today's news that the Real Estate Regulatory Agency would work with banks to raise up to $1.36 billion to finish 48 developments.

Emerging Trend

The truth is that mature economies are finding it difficult in recent years. Heavy debt is always a major issue – whether you are an individual or a mature economy. Developing economies are not burdened with that degree of debt and, therefore, they can grow at a faster rate. Rapid growth means higher returns and that fact is not lost on investors who are eyeing the Dubai market.

Dubai's residential sector in recovery mode

Eyeing Dubai

The Dubai real estate market looks attractive to investors and, no doubt, the city is a favorite with tourists. Yet the best measure of a city is how it cares for and nurtures its residents so that 'everyone' can live a productive and pleasant life within its boundaries.

Do You Have Your Eye On Dubai?

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