OLIVER (sings)

Who will buy
This wonderful morning?
Such a sky
You never did see!

Who will tie
It up with a ribbon
And put it in a box for me?

So I could see it at my leisure
Whenever things go wrong
And I would keep it as a treasure
To last my whole life long.

Who will buy
This wonderful feeling?
I’m so high
I swear I could fly.

Speaking of flying high - here in Houston, we have at least five new high rise residential towers in various stages of completion. We have others, such as the heavily attacked Ashby high-rise that have yet to come out of the ground.

Who will buy?

To get a loan, these new restrictions apply –

* All condo loans now require a minimum of 10% down payment
* Investor owned properties now require a minimum of 20% down payment
* Any condo project requires a minimum of 55% owner occupancy
* No non-warrantable condo loans are permitted

Okay, what does that mean?

Condos, especially newly built high-rise condos, cost more money per square foot than do traditional structures. Now, a potential buyer will have to make a significantly larger down payment for a high-rise condo than for a traditional structure.

That limits the appeal of high-rise condos.

There are NO LOANS available in new projects until those projects have met FNMA or FHA standards for owner occupancy and sales.

If the condo developer goes with sales to investors (who can’t get loans either) and they don’t fill the building up with at least 55% buyers who live in the condo, they’ll NEVER get loans in those buildings.

Thinking about the ranks of glittering new high rise condos in Miami, New Jersey, Delaware, Houston, Dallas and other cities .. I keep hearing the plaintive, hopeful song of the vendor as she tries to attract attention across the busy marketplace …

“Who will buy my sweet red roses?”

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