• Local Market Conditions & home prices
  • The Twin Cities

    Median home prices in St. Paul and Minneapolis

    The Twin cities of Saint Paul and Minneapolis are not identical twins. The cities are more like very close fraternal twins. There are differences between the two cities. Property taxes are higher in Minneapolis but those taxes include more services. You would have to live in Saint Paul for a time to really appreciate what a quirky little town it is.

    Home prices are on average higher in Minneapolis than they are in St. Paul. Home prices are going up slightly faster in Saint Paul than they are in Minneapolis. There are other differences between the two cities.

    Minneapolis has a woman for a mayor and she isn’t the first. Saint Paul has had 53 male mayors in a row. Minneapolis police chief is also a woman, Chief Janeé Harteau, who was just named on Fortune’s list of top 50 world leader. Harteau is number 22 on the list.

    I guess I would call Saint Paul parochial, but I also call it home.

  • First Time Home Buyers
  • Rents are up

    Multi family home prices and sales

    Rents are up. The average rental price for a one bedroom apartment in St. Paul is over $900 dollars a month and I don’t know if that includes utilities.  Two bedroom apartments rent for an average of 1100 a month.

    The supply of multi family homes on the market is low and the prices have been rising. Right now there are  38 multi family home on the market and 14 of them have offers on them. The average asking price is $268K. It isn’t at all unusual for people who can not qualify for a mortgage to pay more to rent each month than they would pay to own a home.

    Home ownership isn’t right for everyone. Home ownership is at 62.9% which is the lowest rate since 1965.

    The numbers on the chart are from the NorthstarMLS which is deemed reliable but not guaranteed.

    Also see Home ownership still important

  • St. Paul MN
  • A day without a woman

    A day without women

    Today is international women’s day and it is also “A day without a Women”. Women are encouraged to take the day off from work. I know many women can not do that. If all women state governors took the day off  47 states would have a working governor and three would not. If all women nurses took the day off people would die.

    Not all women will be able to skip work today because if they do they may be fired and they may lose a day’s pay. Women can also participate by not buying anything unless it is purchased from a woman owned business.

    About 63% of all Realtors are women, and 53% of real estate brokers are women but most of the large real estate companies owned by corporations are run by men and so are the franchises. The national association of Realtors is a man and a male has always held the position even though there are more female members than there are male members.

    If you look at a list of the top leaders in the real estate industry it is mostly men. If you look at the list of up and coming leaders in the real estate industry it is mostly male but then of course the people who make the lists are men too. If you look at advertisements or news articles about real estate agents there will be a picture of a man in his 30’s or 40’s wearing a dark suit. Sometimes the man has dark skin, and sometimes light to show diversity.

    Real estate sales people enjoy a level playing field where women earn as much as men. There is some evidence that women agents get more money for the homes they sell but supposedly that applies to attractive women which I find interesting because buyers rarely see the listing agent.

    As a woman the smartest and best thing I ever did was start a business. I have been self employed for 15 years. Since people are encouraged to hire women owned businesses today, I’ll keep my phone on while I am not working. 🙂

    If you are a woman and would like to learn more about a career in real estate, or becoming an independent contractor, or starting a real estate company please call or write with your questions.

    Information about a day without women

  • For Boomers
  • The best time to put you home on the market

    The Zillow group did a study and concluded that the best time to put your Saint Paul home on the market is on a Friday between May 16th and May 31st. This year that will be Friday the 19th or Friday the 26th. Homes listed on those days will take 6 days less to sell and will sell for an average of 1.4% more or an average of $3200 more than homes that were listed on other dates.

    Real estate is local. In many markets Saturday is the magic day and early may is the best time. I think Thursday is usually the best day of the week to list a home but will go along with Friday. Homes listed at the end of the week are noticed right when buyers and their agents are looking for homes to tour on the weekend.

    The numbers in this post are averages and past performance does not guarantee future results.

    spring wildflowers
  • Downtown
  • High crime areas

    Downtown Saint Paul

    I don’t write much about crime. No one wants to talk about it and it is bad for business.  Last week I was the victim of a robbery. A robbery is a bit different than a theft or a burglary and the difference is important. A robbery is an in person crime where force is used with the intent to take something and it is a felony.

    A young man followed me into the lobby of a downtown building, started talking to me and when I turned around to answer him he grabbed my purse and ran.

    Ultimately I got my belongings back. A total stranger heard me yell as I ran after the robber and was able to intercept the robber causing him to drop my purse and run away.

    That was the third or maybe the fourth time I have had a purse and wallet stolen in St. Paul but the prior occasions were thefts or burglaries and even a “smash and grab” but not robberies in broad daylight during the lunch hour in downtown St. Paul.

    The police arrived more than an hour after I called 911 to “take my statement” and by that time any witness who may have been in the area was long gone. As has always been my experience with the Saint Paul PD these two were about as indifferent as two people could be.

    There isn’t anything they can do after a crime happens but I always figure if I call them and report it maybe somehow the information will help someone.  The officers did not know the downtown area well or maybe not at all which made it hard to explain what happened, where it happened and where the thief went.

    The young man who robbed me did not need to be afraid of being caught and will likely have a lucrative career grabbing purses and wallets downtown during business hours as long as he stays on the streets.

    The streets around the Union Depot in downtown St. Paul, are eerily quiet during the noon hour. Maybe people are in the skyways. I was walking from my car which was parked on Wacouta Street to 4th street. As someone who likes to walk I know that the safest areas are the places where there are lots of people or even just more than three of four people.

    If you go downtown and venture outside please be careful. Put your phone in your pocket and avoid carrying anything that can be taken away from you.

    To learn more about crime in St. Paul go to the Saint Paul Police web site develop an awareness of what types of crimes happen and where they occur.