NYC real estate in brief

July 08, 2009 04:48PM

Mortgage fraud up in 2008 according to FBI report
Mortgage fraud in the United States continued to escalate throughout 2008, according to a yearly mortgage fraud report released yesterday by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The report blames the increase in fraud on the distressed housing market, which led to a spike in foreclosures and defaults as well as diminishing credit availability. Homeowners trying to maintain their current standard of living resorted to short sales, builder bailout schemes, and foreclosure rescue schemes in order to illegally reduce or eliminate large mortgage payments. The states with the highest concentration of mortgage fraud include Florida and California, according to the report, and New York ranked number 11. In this downward trending market, the report shows that some homeowners are modifying old mortgage fraud schemes and even creating new ones, including reverse mortgage fraud schemes.

Second quarter 2009 hospitality report shows distress
As mounting job losses continue to discourage leisure and business travel, conditions in the national hospitality sector are expected to remain weak for the rest of the year, according to a second-quarter 2009 hospitality report from commercial brokerage Marcus & Millichap. Occupancy rates have dropped to 53 percent, down 670 basis points from this quarter last year, and the average daily room rate has slid to under $100, which is 8.5 percent lower than one year ago. Revenue per available room, or revpar, has also declined, dropping 18.7 percent from last year to $52.78. Despite the signs of distress, approximately 100,000 new rooms have been put into service this year and many hotel analysts believe the industry is passing through the worst of the downturn and may start to stabilize soon.

Phase one completed at East New York project
After 20 years, the first phase of construction at Brooklyn’s Nehemiah Spring Creek Homes has been completed. The project covers a 227-acre site in East New York. The phase included the creation of 184 affordable housing units, 117 which are available for purchase and 67 for rent.  The Community Preservation Corporation provided a $30 million dollar loan to finance the construction of the homes. The Nehemiah Spring Creek Homes is part of the larger Gateway Estates, which will eventually encompass 2,219 affordable homes, public schools, and 47 acres of recreational space for residents and their visitors only. TRD