Saint Paul Real Estate Blog

2011 Minneapolis & Saint Paul Home Tour

The 2011 Minneapolis & Saint Paul Home Tour is coming up this weekend. Homes on the free, self-guided tour will be open Saturday, April 30, from 10 am to 5 pm and Sunday, May 1, from 1 pm to 5 pm.

The Minneapolis & St. Paul Home Tour is coordinated by Minneapolis Neighborhood Revitalization Program (NRP) and the City of Saint Paul Planning and Economic Development department with other corporate and non-profit sponsors. On the tour of “real homes, real people, real ideas,” residents open their doors to show creative and practical ideas for home additions, kitchens, bathrooms and more. Visitors can talk directly with homeowners and find out what it’s like to live there. At many homes, their contractors, architects, and other trades people will also be on hand to answer questions.

Additionally, at 1:30 p.m. on each day, Bev Fiman will lead a walking tour of a few blocks in the Minneapolis Folwell neighborhood, stepping off from 3405 Humboldt Ave. N. Fiman has conducted tours at the Purcell Cutts house and is an architecture enthusiast. The tour route will highlight elements of various housing styles which brought the working people’s homes in this neighborhood dignity and distinction.


Twin Cities Homes Prices Decreased in March

The median prices for Twin Cities homes sold during the month of March fell more than 15% to $140,000 from the previous year, according to a report from the Minneapolis Area Association of Realtors.

The residential real estate price decrease is accompanied by a 4% drop in the number of closed sales for the 13-county metro area to 3,154 in March 2011 versus March 2010.

"Foreclosure sales accounted for roughly 40 percent of (pending sales) and 43 percent of closings," said Brad Fisher, president of the Minneapolis Area Association of Realtors, in a statement. "While those market shares are in line with recent trends, they're still higher than what we would like to see."

Foreclosure sales are having a depressing effect on the residential real estate market by flooding it with cheap, available properties. The price of traditionally sold homes decreased 4% last month to $192,000 compared to last year. At the same time, foreclosure prices decreased 11% to $105,000 and short sale prices decreased 7% to $134,950.


Though March is the beginning of the home sale season and activity during this time tends to wind up, pending home sales fell nearly 18% from March 2010 to 4,162 purchase agreements signed in March 2011. Though that seems huge, in March 2010 people were scrambling to take last minute advantage of the first time home buyer federal income tax credit incentive. March 2011 sales were up 3% when compared to March 2009 and up 17% from March 2008.

Another tentatively good sign is that inventory is shrinking, which may help prices become more stabile. Sellers placed 6,977 properties on the real estate market in March 2011, about 30% fewer than in March 2011. Inventory levels as a whole diminished nearly 5%...

Busted House a Boon to Community

Five long years after it was snapped up by a bank in foreclosure, a dilapidated house at the intersection of Oakdale and Butler avenues in West St. Paul has been dropped into the hands of the city's economic development authority. The donation is an unusual opportunity amid the mortgage mess.

In an emailed statement, U.S. Bank spokeswoman Teri Charest said the donation "was the best option because of the value it provides the community. We applaud their efforts to turn this space into something that will benefit the neighborhood."

At its meeting next month, the EDA will discuss what to do with the 0.15-acre lot. It will likely become an open space for the neighborhood. There's even been talk about using it as a community garden.

During the time it belonged to the bank, the property racked up a considerable stack of citations for maintenance problems ranging from broken windows to tall weeds. It brought in contractors for estimates to fix up the house after they were hit with several property-maintenance citations, but eventually realized it made no sense to rehabilitate the house. By donating the property, the bank can write it off as a loss and stop paying for maintenance and county taxes.

Dakota County tax records show the home and lot are worth an estimated $127,900. However, a recent appraisal pegged the home's value at about $26,000.

Source: U.S. Bank turns over foreclosed home to West St. Paul for possible open space


Piece of Minnesota History for Sale

vasachildrenshome_400An impressive home that had a role in Minnesota history is for sale in Vasa, MN. The Barker & Hedges Team with Re/Max Results, a leader in the Twin Cities real estate market, is the listing agent for this meticulously restored house that once served as Lutheran Social Services Vasa Children’s Home.

The home can be found at 15251 Old Children’s Home Road in Vasa, Minnesota. Constructed in 1899, this house was the dormitory for the Vasa Children’s Home for 27 years. In 1926, the group moved to a new location, and the property was used for many purposes, included as a grain storage facility for local farmers.

In 1968, the previous owners purchased the Vasa Children’s Home, the remaining structures and acreage. They immediately began their work of restoring both soundness and beauty to it. Over a period of eight years, they disassembled deteriorating buildings and integrating many recovered materials into renovations within the home's interior. When the work was finished, the building had been converted into a seven bedroom, three bathroom home with a about 5,000-square-feet of interior space. The home had about 34½ acres of land surrounding it.

In 1974, the newly remodeled home and land were purchased by the current owners. They transformed the charming country home into a magnificent country estate, complete with landscaping, perennial gardens, a pond and an orchard, all behind a security gate and maintenance-free fence. A heated six car garage was built on the land with an attached green house. What was once a bunk house is now a three car garage,...

What $299,900 Buys in Woodbury MN

Here is MLS # 4024102

This single-family, two-story home at 2281 Woodcrest Drive is in Woodbury, MN. This beautiful, like-new home was built in 2006. It has 4 bedrooms, 3 bathroom, and 2,464-square-feet of space.

The home features an open floor plan and two-story foyer, 4 large bedrooms on upper level, master suite, walkout basement, deck and loft.


In a fantastic location, this home could be yours for just $299,900!

Browse more Woodbury MN homes for sale.


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