Real Estate

Taaffe’s 19th-century estate is today’s Lincoln Park

Gustav Frederik O’Hara Taaffe was born on in Denmark on Dec. 1, 1825. He arrived in San Francisco in 1851 and worked at first as an agent for the Commercial Union Assurance Co. He later served as the consul for Denmark and the vice-consul for Sweden and Norway. (A consul is an official appointed by a government to live in a foreign city and protect and promote the government’s citizens and interests there.) Before coming to Alameda he lived at 2114 Mason St. in San Francisco. 

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) reported on Monday that existing-home sales across the country rose strongly in May. Existing-home sales in the west rose 0.9 percent to an annual rate of 1.09 million last month, which is 11.4 percent below sales this time last year. 

The median existing-home price for all housing types in May in the United States was $213,400, up 5.1 percent from this time last year. The median price in this part of the country was $297,500, 8.4 percent higher than May 2013.

Affordability constraints, low inventory played roles

California home sales eased slightly in May as a shortage of homes and housing affordability concerns held back would-be home buyers, the California Association of Realtors (C.A.R.) announced on Tuesday. Meanwhile, the median home price posted higher from both the previous month and year for the third consecutive month and remained at its highest level since December 2007.

The U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 3211 (The Mortgage Choice Act of 2013) on June 10. According to the National Association of Realtors the act “importantly redefines a provision in the ability-to-repay rule that requires lenders to make good-faith efforts to determine that their borrowers can repay their mortgages before initiating the loans.

Freddie Mac’s June 12 Primary Mortgage Market Survey showed that the 30-year fixed mortgage rose 6 basis points to 4.20 percent. This marked the the second consecutive week that rates have risen. In the second week of June 2013, the 30-year fixed averaged 3.98 percent.

The 15-year fixed-rate mortgage also rose, averaging 3.31 percent, up 8 basis points from June 5 when it averaged 3.23 percent. A year ago at this time, the 15-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.10 percent.  

 

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