Number of signed contracts falls in June

Pending home sales edged down in June, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), which forecast near-term sales in the U.S. notably lower than during the months that approached expiration of the homebuyer tax credit.

The Pending Home Sales Index, a forward-looking indicator, declined 2.6 percent to 75.7 based on contracts signed in June from an upwardly revised level of 77.7 in May.  It was 18.6 percent below June 2009. Commented Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist: Continue reading

Irreverent view of the Hamptons is a good read

What better time of the year to catch up with the Hamptons and how they came to be the coveted summer and weekend destination of exceptionally moneyed denizens of New York City and far-flung locales?

A year or so ago, I posted my praise of  “The Sky’s the Limit” by Steven Gaines, one accomplished writer.   Now, I once again offer high praise of a book of his,  “Philistines at the Hedgerow,” a 12-year-old bestseller that I just finished.

One of the characteristics of Gaines’ writing is its gracefulness.  The author produces uncommonly stylish prose, and the depth of his research always is impressive.

Truth be told, Continue reading