One-hour open house: A new trend in realty?

Chicago Tribune

A realty company near Cape Town, South Africa, has introduced a practice that might be the real estate equivalent of speed dating: It has announced that, henceforth, all open houses will be for one hour only.

It wouldn't appear that the market there is so hot that agents don't have to do much to sell the homes, though it is still strong, according to local reports. Rather, the company says it will draw visitors to the houses through e-mail announcements.

Besides, it says, real estate agents will now be able to host several open houses in one Sunday afternoon. Bet the agents are thrilled with that prospect.


All things Trump

Here a Donald, there a Donald. Good gravy, the man is everywhere:

* At least 10,000 residents of Phoenix who want to limit building heights have signed a petition seeking a referendum that would overturn a City Council decision to let Trump's company build a 140-foot-tall hotel/condo building.

* Trump has put a home on the market in Palm Beach, Fla., that could be the most expensive in the country. The seven-bedroom oceanfront house, which he bought for $41.3 million a year ago and renovated, is now listed for $125 million.

* Trade magazines say he's looking to license a line of furniture, inspiring industry wags to predict "the Donald Divan" etc. He also recently attached his name to a line of "super-premium" vodka.


A TV, but no tickets

In Detroit, where the real estate market is hurting because of the ailing auto industry, builders' marketing is getting creative.

Here's the latest: Buy a house at a particular development and get a Super Bowl bash. The deal includes catering for 25 guests, a big-screen TV and a $2,000 gift certificate for furniture. The game will be held Feb. 5 at Detroit's Ford Field.

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