Sunday, June 26, 2005

New Artist Studio Loft

New Artist Studio Loft is for sale. It's huge and is in great shape to move in if you like minimal build outs, or has lots of potential if you want to finish one your style.

It is in the King Bee Building at 1709 Washington.

The owner and I spoke a few times and he's excited to have it on the market. He lives out of town and doesn't get much use out of it.

It's almost 1800 square feet with a new kitchen and updated bathroom and AC.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

New Retailer comes downtown!

I've seen this retailer and saw the construction going on. Nice article in the Post about the loft district etc.

My only disappointment is the other article in the Post about the great trendy stores entering the St. Louis marketplace only to find that they are coming to Des Peres and Brentwood.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Mayberry Revisited

I asked a client who was buying a loft in Printers C, "Do you think (with all the new development & new residents) that the loft district will maintain it's "small town" feel?

To that question, she replied,"I hope so."

I'm interested in hearing what other's think.

According to all the development statistics, the number of housing units available as of next summer will be double that of this past winter. Will we loose the tight knit community that has become so attractive because of the development? Let me know.

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

A Letter From The Mayor's Office

I was very impressed with a letter received from Barbara Geisman, the Executive Director of Development for the City of St. Louis a few weeks ago.

It all started when I got a ticket while parked in a 15 minute only spot by the Knickerbocker. I sent a smart ass email to the mayor and added that it would be better for the city to clean up the vagrancy in Lucas Park than to continue to collect $10 bills from little ole me.

She brought up that there is a concentration of facilities serving the homeless in the downtown area and that efforts to "encourage the development of such facilities (elsewhere in the region) would be much appreciated.

Where should these facilities go, and how do we go about allowing them to move elsewhere is a subject that I am interested in. Are there any facilities serving the homeless in St. Louis County, Metro East, or St. Charles?

Thursday, June 02, 2005

Downtown Lofts Stay True

Exciting new development on 16th and Washington in the Arts & Crafts Building. We had to really dig for the new sales information (basically by calling the number on the architects window). We got the floorplans via a blue print and were told that reservations on units were being accepted based on floorplans and that no contract would be required for a few months.

Warrantable vs. Unwarrantable Lofts

Watch out!

I've spoken to so many people lately that think that they qualify for any lending on any property just because they have a good credit score, or Bill Gates will be co-signing for them.

Many of the loft developments in the city are considered "Non-Warrantable" condominiums. In english, that means that the loan will not be able to be sold by your lender on the secondary market as a conforming "Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac" loan.

Broken down further, that means that you may have trouble getting financing for that fantastic new loft IF YOU DON"T HAVE THE RIGHT LENDER.

UPDATE:  We work with lots of great lenders.  Unfortunately, since this post was originally written, banks and other investors have stopped lending their own money and loans for non-warrantable lofts are much more difficult to come by. Contact US!  Its heartbreaking when a client thinks they can find the needle in the haystack and tries, only to find a mortgage person that's trying to get their "foot in the door" by telling them that they can probably do that type of loan, only to make an offer, pay for an inspector and appraisal, then be told "NO".  I've heard too many times that people use their own resources only to find out that the bank isn't set up to write loans on Non-Warrantable Condos.


Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Downtown Lofts stay true

New article talks about lofts in the abandoned Arts & Crafts building. I'm excited. So, not having any sales information, we called the number on the architects window (showing the renderings of the units) and spoke to John Manshausen with Jacob Development. We got the skinny on the building, the construction timeline, and some limited sales information.

It seems that there are reservations based upon floorplans, but limited work has been done to the building (other than putting a fancy sign up saying lofts are available).