U.S. Mortgage Rates Continue to Climb in April

Freddie Mac | April 26, 2019

According to Freddie Mac's latest Primary Mortgage Market Survey, fixed mortgage rates in the U.S. posted a fourth consecutive week of increases. Sam Khater, Freddie Mac's chief economist, says, "Despite the recent rise in mortgage rates, both existing and new home sales continue to show strength - indicating the lagged effect of lower rates on housing demand. This, along with improved affordability, should push housing activity higher in the coming months."

Spotlight

LendSure’s Bridge Financing program empowers borrowers to access equity from their current home to purchase a new home with no monthly payments on the bridge financing. Borrowers can gain a competitive advantage in a hot housing market by making a non-contingent offer on the new property.

Spotlight

LendSure’s Bridge Financing program empowers borrowers to access equity from their current home to purchase a new home with no monthly payments on the bridge financing. Borrowers can gain a competitive advantage in a hot housing market by making a non-contingent offer on the new property.

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BROKERAGE,REAL ESTATE INVESTMENT

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Expands Mississippi Footprint with Cabin & Creek Real Estate

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices | December 06, 2022

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, a global residential real estate brokerage franchise network is pleased to announce its further expansion in the Southeastern region with the addition of Cabin & Creek Real Estate, which will now operate as Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Cabin & Creek Real Estate. The office will be owned by Mississippi state native Chuck Paulk who has 17 years of industry experience and expertise. Headquartered in Summit, Mississippi, the office will serve the Southwestern region of Mississippi. Since its creation Cabin & Creek Real Estate has grown; increasing its annual sales almost 10 times in less than 8 years and will now bring its success to the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices global brand. This is such a monumental milestone for our team, We are looking forward to growing and expanding throughout our marketplace under the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices brand. This step in our business will allow us to better serve our clients, providing invaluable assistance from start to finish, said Paulk. By joining the network, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Cabin & Creek Real Estate agents gain access to Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices’ active referral and relocation networks, and its “FOREVER Cloud” technology suite, a powerful source for lead generation, marketing support, social media, video production/distribution and more. The brand also provides an exclusive Luxury Collection marketing program for premier listings. Its Prestige Magazine showcases network members’ premium listings with a strong lineup of feature stories covering topics that appeal to high-end real estate clients. “Given the demand we are seeing for homes in this area, it made sense for us to expand to better support this growing market, While the availability of country homes with land, homes in town and beyond are highly competitive, this team will be able to provide on-the-ground knowledge and provide clients with an exceptional experience throughout every part of the homebuying or selling process.” -Christy Budnick, CEO, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Cabin & Creek Real Estate will have a team of agents supporting the new office who brings extensive familiarity of the Southwestern Mississippi market. Gino Blefari, chairman of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, welcomed the company to the network, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Cabin & Creek Real Estate is a clear example of our mission. It’s important to us that we align ourselves with individuals who share the same core values, and I have no doubt that this team will carry out these ethics seamlessly. About Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Cabin & Creek Real Estate Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Cabin & Creek Real Estate is a full-service real estate agency specializing in country homes with land, homes in town, land tracts of all sizes, and the best in recreational properties. With its extensive market knowledge in commercial and residential transactions, it assists its clients in every step to guarantee a smooth and simple transition. About Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices is a global residential real estate network with more than 50,000 real estate professionals and nearly 1,500 offices across 11 countries including, the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Europe, the Middle East, The Bahamas, and India. In 2021, the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices global network represented more than $179.9 billion (USD) in real estate sales volume. The network, among the few organizations entrusted to use the world-renowned Berkshire Hathaway name, brings to the real estate market a definitive mark of trust, integrity, stability, and longevity.

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REAL ESTATE TECHNOLOGY,REAL ESTATE INVESTMENT

Lessen Acquires SMS Assist to Expand Property Enterprise Solutions

Lessen | January 17, 2023

Lessen, the leading tech-enabled outsourced property services platform, recently announced the strategic acquisition of facilities maintenance technology leader SMS Assist. By combining the complementary strengths of both organizations, Lessen will continue to address real estate's pain points, offering its clients a scalable, tech-enabled enterprise solution for residential and commercial services. As a result, the companies will serve around 250,000 residential and commercial properties nationwide, enabling approximately 2.5 million repair and maintenance orders annually, in addition to expanding their property services. The transaction is completed with stock and cash, with Lessen raising roughly $500 million in combined new debt and equity. SMS Assist stockholders exchanged a portion of SMS stock for Lessen stock, resulting in a combined company valuation of over $2 billion. Debt and equity investors, including Värde Partners, Monroe Capital, and Koch Real Estate Investments, assisted with this transaction. Invitation Homes and American Homes 4 Rent are among the clients who invested in the deal with Lessen. Following the conclusion of the transaction, Lessen's Jay McKee will continue to serve as Chairman of the Board of Directors and CEO of the newly-merged company. He states, "Lessen recognized early on the opportunity to provide an enterprise-level solution that solved the real estate industry's long-tenured property services pain points." He added, "This deal demonstrates the increasing demand within the underpenetrated, $330 billion addressable North American property services market for a unified, extensible delivery platform that provides transparency, efficiency and data-driven insights for the entire real estate ecosystem including investors, owners, managers and service providers. (Source – Business Wire) The new, unified technology platform will allow various service providers—from painters, contractors, and plumbers to electricians and more—to work as one on a national scale, which was previously impossible. The quality of this work will be supervised and inspected by Lessen's in-house project managers. This integrated solution will assist owners in overcoming skilled labor shortages while lessening administrative burden, enhancing project efficiency, and providing real-time project updates. About Lessen Lessen is the only end-to-end tech-enabled solution for outsourced real estate property services that delivers consistency, quality, and speed at scale, focusing on single-family and multifamily rental renovations, turns, and maintenance. Through automation and real-time analytics, the firm's technology suite is disrupting and modernizing a project management space that is still reliant on traditional organizational and communication models. The company's professional field project managers provide on-the-ground service, utilizing a network of verified service professionals in over 40 markets across the country, all powered by its proprietary technology platform.

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REAL ESTATE TECHNOLOGY

Blueground to Acquire Brazilian PropTech Startup Tabas, Accelerating Its Global Expansion in South and Central America

Blueground and Tabas | November 18, 2022

Blueground, a PropTech scaleup offering a turnkey, flexible housing solution for renters globally, announces today it entered into agreement to acquire Brazilian PropTech startup, Tabas. Marking the first acquisition in Blueground’s nearly 10-year history, the company will soon acquire Tabas after leading Tabas’ $14 million Series A funding round earlier this year. Tabas is the largest operator of designer-quality furnished apartments for 30 days or more in São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, and Brazilia. The acquisition, which is expected to close in early Q1 2023, enables Blueground to enter the Latin American market, and fuel the increased demand for furnished, flexible rentals in the region. Together Blueground and Tabas will launch Mexico City in early 2023. During the period between now and close, the two companies will continue to operate independently and will gradually integrate over the next year. The combined organization will have a presence in 29 cities across 16 countries, employing over 1,000 people. Based on current financial projections, the joint entity is projected to generate ~650M in 2023. Blueground is the largest turnkey property rental company in the 30+ day sector. It has a network of 9,500 move-in-ready, expertly-designed homes enabling people to flexibly live wherever they choose. The company was co-founded by CEO Alex Chatzieleftheriou in 2013, who, after many years as a business consultant, had experienced first-hand the pain points of living out of hotels for work for months at a time. He aspired to create a seamless way for people to freely move between neighborhoods, cities, and countries around the world. Blueground currently works with over 4,700 landlords globally, guaranteeing them rental income while providing expert property management and maintenance services at scale. The acquisition of Tabas will allow Blueground to grow its network faster, supporting its goals of 40,000 apartments across 50 cities by 2025, and add more location options for its client base. “We’ve had our sights set on Latin America for quite some time, as we see huge market potential for furnished and flexible rentals, Since our first investment in Tabas last year, we’ve developed immense respect for the Tabas team and what they’ve built in Brazil. With our best-in-class technology and our expertise in scaling the business, we'll continue to expand and offer the option for a flexible lifestyle in more markets globally.” -Alex Chatzieleftheriou, CEO and Co-founder, Blueground Founded in May 2020, Tabas was born out of the founders’ frustration with the lack of flexible, fully furnished rentals for mid- to long-term stays. Tabas now has over 1,000 apartments in three cities in Brazil - São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, and Brazilia, raising over $20 million in funding prior to the acquisition. As the first project post-acquisition, Tabas will offer its knowledge and understanding of the market to support the launch of Blueground in Mexico City in early 2023, marking Blueground’s 30th city, and 11th in the last 12 months. Tabas and Blueground’s visions are fully aligned and together we can create even more value for our guests, our landlords and the Tabas team, This acquisition is yet another success story for Brazilian proptech companies. We're proud of the work we’ve done to get us this far; now it’s time to take it to the next level and continue bringing the turn-key, flexible rental living concept across Latin America,said Leonardo Morgatto, Co-founder and CEO, Tabas. The pandemic gave rise to new work environments, enabling people to explore the world and forgo traditional long-term leases for flexible rentals. To keep up with the growing demand, Blueground has doubled its supply of apartments in the last year. The acquisition is subject to standard closing conditions, including regulatory approvals. About Blueground Blueground is a global PropTech company that operates a curated network of thousands of quality, turnkey homes in sought-after neighborhoods around the globe, making them available for stays of a month or longer. Blueground’s tech-enabled platform provides a fully digitized experience; from viewing and booking available apartments within minutes to managing the entire stay through the Blueground Guest App. Blueground is headquartered in New York City, with a portfolio of thousands of apartments in 26 cities worldwide including in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Boston, Chicago, Washington D.C., Denver, Seattle, Austin, Miami, Dubai, Istanbul, Paris, London, Vienna, Zurich, Berlin, Madrid, Barcelona, Lisbon, Basel, Luxembourg, Copenhagen, Hong Kong, Singapore, and Athens. Blueground plans to expand to 50 cities by 2025. About Tabas Tabas is a Brazilian real estate technology startup providing beautifully-designed fully-furnished apartments for flexible stay. Founded in early 2020, it already has more than 1,000 apartments in its portfolio, in the cities of São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and Brasília, all located in upscale neighborhoods, equipped and decorated with sophistication. With unprecedented flexibility for the Brazilian market regarding rental contracts, the company works with terms starting from 30 days of rent, guaranteeing the property maintenance to the owners and uncomplicated and well assisted reservations to the tenants.

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