Posts Tagged 'Real Estate'

Cemeteries Increase Home Values

Buying any kind of famous haunted house is generally not a very good financial move. Sure you may get a decent deal on the house but the “haunted” status is what is driving down the price. It turns out that people don’t want to live in a house that they’re afraid of and you’ll probably have a very hard time if you want to sell the house yourself. However, in the spirit of Halloween there is something morbid that actually increases home values, cemeteries. According to a recent article by Redfin houses that are within 50 feet of a cemetery have an average home value that is 13 percent higher per square foot than the other houses in the area. Why is this? A well-maintained cemetery can be beautiful in a way but the real reason is that they’re quiet. It turns out that dead people make far less noise than living people and that’s a definite plus to people who want to live in a quiet neighborhood. Also older cemeteries can add a historical value to the surrounding properties. Some people may find it really cool to live by a graveyard with tombstones that date from the 1700s. So remember this on Halloween; while haunted houses may not sell for much, a house right next to a graveyard will sell for a premium.

I love quiet neighbors.

Churchill has short-term corporate housing available Nationwide. Please contact us at 866-255-0593 or for more information.

Please Don’t Vote for Me

In the world of American politics, elections on odd numbered years don’t get too much attention. Neither the Presidency nor anyone in Congress is up for election and most states only have low-level state and local elections (except New Jersey and Virginia who have governor races this year.) Perhaps this is why this one strange mayor’s race in the small rural town of Saxonburg, Pennsylvania got any press at all. Incumbent mayor Jody Pflueger initially decided to run for re-election this year but now as election day nears she is begging the town’s residents to not vote for her. Apparently she and her husband found their dream home a few towns over which now means that she’ll no longer be living in the town she’s the mayor of and she doesn’t want to be the mayor of a town she doesn’t live in. It goes to show you that finding the perfect place to live can dramatically change your life for the better even if that transition can be really awkward. Still it’s kind of amusing to see someone who is serving in an elected office actively campaign for the candidate running against them.

Churchill has short-term corporate housing available Nationwide. Please contact us at 866-255-0593 or for more information.

French Castles Are Cheaper Than New York Apartments

It’s no secret that real estate in New York City is expensive. Most city residents have resigned themselves to the fact that if they don’t already own property in the city limits they probably never will. But what if you do earn enough to make buying a house or apartment in New York a viable option? Would it even be worth it? Buzzfeed has put together a list of six lovely picturesque castles in France that while expensive, cost less than some houses and apartments on the market in New York City. What could possibly explain why a modest living space in New York could demand a higher price than an extravagant French chateau?

It all comes down to supply and demand. New York City crams about 8.3 million people into 302.64 square miles with many more people wanting to move in. By owning property in the city you are not only close to the office where you earn your money, but you also have the ability to make a killing renting your property. Living in New York also comes with the advantages of not having to own a car and all of those related expenses as well as fairly easy access to markets for goods and services that you want and need. All of those factors are what drive property values in New York up to the astronomical levels that they’re at now.

Now lets compare that to the French castles. Yes they’re quite large, luxurious, and have incredibly beautiful views. However, Many of them are out in the French countryside further away from shops, services, and places where people work. Also maintaining those incredible lawns and gardens can’t be cheap. There is also the issue of taxes. If you earn anywhere near the amount of money where you can afford one of those castles you’re going to pay far more in taxes living in France than you will in America. When you consider all of those factors together, that is why enormous French castles are cheaper than New York real estate. The list price of a New York apartment is far closer to the true cost of ownership than it is for a French castle. But I will defiantly keep that article in mind in the incredibly unlikely chance that I win the Powerball.

I’ll take that over a Bed-Stuy townhouse any day.

Churchill has short-term corporate housing available in New York City and Nationwide. For more information please contact us at 866-255-0593 or

$1 Houses Are For Sale in Indiana… With a Catch

The city of Gary, Indiana currently has some of the best deals in real estate. The city recently bought several properties at a tax auction and they have recently announced that all 12 of those houses will be sold for one dollar. While the too-good-to-be-true price tag has drawn a great deal of attention, the city has turned away the vast majority of it’s roughly 400 suitors. That is because the city will only sell the properties to buyers who meet these qualifications:

-Must have lived in Gary for at least 6 months;
-Must have $1,000 in savings;
-Must earn at least 80% of the area’s median annual income of $35,250;
-Must demonstrate that they have the financial ability to rehabilitate the home;
-Must not currently own a home.

It also comes with the requirement that the owner must reside in the house for at least five years before they get full ownership of house and forfeit everything if they leave early. They may be offering perhaps the greatest house flipping opportunity ever but you’ll have to wait a while before you can cash in. In all, only 25 of the 400 interested buyers met those qualifications and the people who eventually get the houses will be selected through a random drawing held next month.

So why is Gary even doing this in the first place? All of these houses are serious fixer-upers and Gary’s mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson wants the potential buyers to be the ones to fix them and be more invested in the city as a whole. By selling a home for pocket change, the new homeowners will be able to afford the thousands of dollars worth of repairs all of the houses will need and it is hoped that their continued residence will stabilize the long economic decline the rust belt city has experienced for decades. Freeman-Wilson has said that if this pilot program is successful, she intends to sell about 50 homes per year under these conditions. It’s certainly an interesting idea and it’s fun to know that it is possible to become a first-time homeowner for just a dollar.

I could go for a $1 house

Churchill has short-term corporate housing available Nationwide. Please contact us at 866-255-0593 or for more information.

Cameron’s House From Ferris Bueller’s Day Off is on the Market

Ferris Bueller’s Day Off is by far the greatest teen movie ever made and now you can buy Cameron Frye’s mid-century modern house at a reduced price. This Illinois house was the site of the movie’s climax where Cameron sends his abusive father’s ’69 Ferrari flying through the glass garage and plunging about 50 feet into the forest below. Judging from its pictures, it doesn’t really look like the house and the surrounding woods have changed all that much since 1986 when the movie was filmed. It has apparently been up for sale since 2009 and since then the asking price has dropped from $2.3 million to $1.65 million. It seems that the movie hasn’t added as much value to the home’s value as he originally thought. Still, if you have a few million dollars to burn and are a die-hard fan of the movie like I am, you can call Cameron’s house your own.

With this house you too can play hookey in Chicago.

Churchill has short-term corporate housing available Nationwide. Please contact us at 866-255-0593 or for more information.

Al Capone’s Final House Sells for Over $7 Million

When people think of organized crime in America Al Capone if one of the first figures that everyone thinks of. The Chicago-based crime lord made a fortune in the black market for alcohol in the 1920s and he became the most notorious gangster from the era of Prohibition. In 1931, he was convicted of tax evasion and sentenced to eight years in Alcatraz. After getting out of prison he bought an estate in Miami Beach for $40,000 in cash where he lived until his death in 1947 at the age of 48.

Well it turns out that Capone and his successors could have made a fortune through more legitimate means with this house. The house where Capone spent the final years of his life recently sold for $7,431,750 according to Zillow. Adjusting for inflation the home’s value appreciated by $6.7 million between the time Capone bought the house and today. The estate has a two guesthouses and a 30′ x 60′ swimming pool and everything was recently renovated to add the most modern of amenities. Even if Capone had lived another 25 years the house’s value would have long since recouped the initial investment. Just consider that if alcohol wasn’t illegal in the 1920s Al Capone would have been a microbrewer instead of a mafia boss, but he still could have become a wildly successful real estate mogul in Miami.

It sure beats Alcatraz as a retirement home.

Churchill has short-term rental apartments throughout Florida and Nationwide. Please contact us at 866-255-0593 or email for more information.

10 best places to raise your kids

MSN Real Estate and Bloomberg Businessweek provide readers with information on the 10 best places to raise your kids. This list is geared toward those considering leaving the big city to move to a more family oriented locale. Bloomberg Businessweek evaluated 3,200 places nationwide with populations from 5,000 to 50,000, looking at metrics including housing cost, commuting time, public school performance, safety, poverty, educational attainment for adults, and households with children and diversity. They also looked at the local job market, median income, and unemployment rate, making this a very studied and thorough assessment. Take a look at these locations and perhaps you will discover the perfect town for your family!

Churchill has short-term corporate housing available Nationwide. Please contact us at 866-255-0593 or for more information.

Bella Vista, Ark. - Photo courtesy of: Frank Krahmer/Getty Images

Bella Vista, Ark. – Photo courtesy of: Frank Krahmer/Getty Images

10 best places to raise your kids:

1. Solon, Ohio

2. Helotes, Texas

3. Bella Vista, Ark.

4. Cranberry Township, Pa.

5. Signal Mountain, Tenn.

6. Peachtree City, Ga.

7. Ballwin, Mo.

8. Cedarburg, Wis.

9. Brandon, Miss.

10. Louisville, Colo.