Mortgage rates hit new low

Freddie Mac said Thursday the going rate on a 30-year fixed rate mortgage fell to 4.69%, its lowest level since the company started keeping track 38 years ago.

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‘Masterpieces’ on hold, waiting for better times

By Kyle Almond, CNN

http://www.cnn.com/2010/LIVING/06/15/architecture.economy/index.html

(CNN) — Some stunning buildings have appeared in American cities the past four years — buildings, like the Aqua skyscraper in Chicago, Illinois, that attest to the creativity of 21st-century architecture.

But there might be fewer of them in the near future, because the recession has forced many architects to tone down their ambition.

“A lot of projects have been delayed, a lot of projects have been scaled back, a lot of projects have been scrapped. … It’s not a time to see a lot of architectural masterpieces being created,” said Kermit Baker, chief economist of the American Institute of Architects.

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Home size declines; buyers opt for single story

WASHINGTON – June 15, 2010 – The size of new single-family homes declined again in 2009, dropping to a nationwide average of 2,438 square feet, according to information about new home characteristics released recently by the U.S. Census Bureau (http://www.census.gov/const/www/charindex.html).

For nearly 30 years, the average size of new U.S. homes increased, peaking at 2,521 square feet in 2007. It was essentially flat in 2008 and then dropped, so that new single-family homes were almost 100 square feet smaller in 2009 than in 2007.

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Freddie Mac: Mortgage rates up from yearly lows

NEW YORK – Rates on 30-year fixed mortgages ticked up this week from the lowest level of the year.

Freddie Mac said Thursday that the average rate rose to 4.79 percent, up from 4.78 percent last week. A year ago, the rate averaged 5.29 percent.

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