Despite rapid growth, these 3 US cities have deals for hopeful buyers

  • The pandemic has been a driver of rising home prices across the US as buyers compete for single-family homes and sellers remain reluctant to list.
  • Mansion Global reports that some luxe markets with big upticks in demand are still within reach for prospective homebuyers. 
  • Homebuyers and investors looking for property in Charleston, Park City, and San Francisco’s East Bay should act fast if they’re looking for a deal. 

The pandemic has been a driver of rising home prices across the US, as buyers compete for single-family homes and sellers remain reluctant to list amid volatility.

Luxury sales had been on a steady upswing dating from last October to this March, before they quickly went into reverse, according to a Redfin report. But the national median home price still set a new high this summer, as demand outstripped overall market supply, and the recent sentiment in major cities like New York is that the luxury market may be on its way back.

That said, some luxury markets still have deals on the offer, sitting in the sweet spot between just still affordable and with room for a return on investment. Mansion Global highlights three markets that have seen big upticks in demand. 

The takeaway is that investors looking for property in Charleston, Park City, and San Francisco’s East Bay should act fast if they’re looking for a deal. Read on to see why those markets stand out.

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The White House Bet on Abbott’s Rapid Tests. It Didn’t Work Out.

Dr. Scott Gottlieb, the former commissioner of the F.D.A., described these procedures as a misguided attempt at a “zero-fail testing protocol” in an interview on CBS’ “Face the Nation” on Sunday, saying that officials “weren’t taking any precautions beyond testing people who are going to be in contact with the president.”

However, according to the products’ packaging, both Abbott rapid tests are intended for people with Covid-19 symptoms, early on in their illness. When Abbott submitted the tests for emergency authorization from the F.D.A., the company provided data only for people with symptoms. When used appropriately, the company has said, both tests perform about 95 percent as well as P.C.R. But how well the products do in asymptomatic individuals remains murky.

In a statement, Darcy Ross, Abbott’s senior director of external communications, said the instructions that came with both products gave physicians the power to administer tests at their discretion, regardless of whether the recipients had symptoms. “As with all tests that have received an E.U.A., a health care provider will determine if a person needs a Covid-19 test,” she said.

Dr. Krutika Kuppalli, an infectious disease physician based in South Carolina, said she would not feel comfortable administering such tests to healthy patients: “We don’t have data to show how this test is going to perform in that population.”

Abbott was not required to submit data evaluating either test’s performance in asymptomatic populations when applying for emergency approval from the F.D.A. But Ms. Ross confirmed that such studies are underway, and the company has told experts that it thinks asymptomatic testing is likely to pan out.

On Saturday evening, Andrea Wainer, Abbott’s executive vice president of rapid and molecular diagnostics, emailed a document entitled “Perspectives on Testing” to several public health experts, including Dr. Ashish Jha, dean of the Brown University School of Public Health, containing preliminary results outlining the ID NOW’s performance in people without symptoms. Among an unspecified number of individuals, the test picked up about 88 percent of the infections found by laboratory P.C.R. tests, the company statement said. Numbers were not reported for the BinaxNOW.

“By studying the test in the asymptomatic people, Abbott knows it works in that population,” the document said. “It can’t say that for itself, because the test isn’t approved for that, but that data has been shared with others and the F.D.A. too.”

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Use of Coronavirus Rapid Tests May Have Fueled White House Covid-19 Cluster, Experts Say

At least eight people who attended the White House’s recent Supreme Court nomination ceremony for Amy Coney Barrett have tested positive for the coronavirus, and public health experts say they expect more attendees to be diagnosed in coming days.

The White House says it has relied on rapid testing to help prevent the spread of Covid-19 among officials and guests. Officials don’t wear masks or socially distance because they are tested daily. The president is also tested for the coronavirus every day, as is anyone who comes in close contact with him.

The administration relied on

Abbott Laboratories

’ ID Now rapid test at the Sept. 26 event for Judge Barrett. After guests tested negative, they were ushered to the Rose Garden, where few people were wearing masks. The White House didn’t comment on whether anyone screened at the event tested positive.

Public-health experts say the White House isn’t using the test appropriately, and that such tests are not meant to be used as one-time screeners. Regardless of the type or brand of test, any strategy that relies solely on testing is insufficient for protecting the public against the virus, epidemiologists and researchers say.

President Trump’s schedule in the week before he was diagnosed with Covid-19 included a Rose Garden event, a presidential debate, and visits to three states. Photo: Getty Images

“What seems to have been fundamentally misunderstood in all this was that they were using it almost like you would implement a metal detector,” said Ashish Jha, dean of Brown University’s school of public health.

All tests, including those processed in a lab, can produce false negatives, he and other experts say. Some studies have shown that the Abbott Now ID test, which can produce a result in minutes, has around a 91% sensitivity—meaning 9% of tests can produce false negatives.

“A metal detector that misses 10% of weapons—you’d never, ever say that’s our only layer of protection for the president,” said Dr. Jha.

Such rapid tests trade some accuracy for speed, and need to be administered multiple times to a person over a period of days or weeks to be useful for screening, he said. The idea is that if the test misses the virus one day for whatever reason, it will be more likely to catch it on another.

“No test detects the virus immediately after the person becomes infected,” said an Abbott spokesperson in a statement. “Today we have lab-based and rapid tests that help reduce the risk in society and slow the spread of the virus. The goal should be to test often—or if that’s not possible, to test if you’ve been exposed or have symptoms—and find out if you have it. If so, you’ll know to isolate to prevent spread.”

A multipronged approach is vital, epidemiologists and researchers say. That includes socially distancing, masks and avoiding crowds.

Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and other guests at the ceremony for Judge Barrett. Mr. Christie has tested positive for coronavirus.



Photo:

Rod Lamkey –

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The White House relied on a rapid test, but used it in a way it was not intended.

For months, the White House’s strategy for keeping President Trump and his inner circle safe has been to screen all White House visitors with a rapid test.

But one product they use, Abbott’s ID Now, was never intended for that purpose and is known to deliver incorrect results. In issuing an emergency use authorization, the Food and Drug Administration said the test was only to be used by a health care provider “within the first seven days of symptoms.”

The ID Now has several qualities in its favor: It’s portable, doesn’t need skilled technicians to operate and delivers results in 15 minutes. Used to evaluate someone with symptoms, the test can quickly and easily diagnose Covid-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.

But in people who are infected but not yet showing symptoms, the test is much less accurate, missing as many as one in three cases.

Used in someone with symptoms, the test can quickly and easily diagnose Covid-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, and has a sensitivity of 95 percent, according to John Koval, a spokesman for Abbott.

In May, after many reports of problems with the test, the F.D.A. warned that those who test negative using the test should confirm that result with a lab-based test.

Still, the Trump administration has routinely used the test to screen people without symptoms, allowing anyone who tested negative to go without a mask during meetings and official proceedings.

The Rev. John I. Jenkins, president of Notre Dame University, tested positive for the coronavirus after attending the White House announcement of the Supreme Court nominee, Judge Amy Coney Barrett, on Saturday. He apologized for going mask-free at the ceremony but said he was told he could do so after his rapid test came back with a negative result.

Given the timing of Mr. Trump’s illness, experts said it is quite possible that he was exposed to the virus on Saturday.

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White House shipping coronavirus rapid tests to HBCUs

In an effort to prevent potential COVID-19 outbreaks in high-risk communities, the Trump administration said it has started shipping rapid coronavirus tests to more than three dozen historically Black colleges and universities.

In the first shipment, more than 250,000 rapid tests were distributed to 41 public colleges and Howard University that identify as HBCUs, federal officials said.

“We know they’ve been underserved historically, and we just want to support them,” Adm. Brett Giroir, the White House coronavirus task force testing czar, told McClatchy.

Another 300,000 are anticipated for delivery by next week to approximately 65 more HBCUs that did not receive the tests in the first round, the officials told McClatchy.

“We think it’s very, very important to equip HBCUs,” Giroir said. “It is a fact, except for a few very high-tech globally competitive universities that many of these are small, rural and do not have the kind of laboratory capacity that other universities do have.”

HBCUs are universities that were founded with primarily Black student bodies before the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

African Americans are five times more likely to be hospitalized from coronavirus, Giroir said. An analysis of HBCUs that the administration conducted also found them to have older faculty and staff with other health factors that made them a high-risk demographic for the coronavirus.

Each university is receiving enough kits to test every member of its student body, staff and faculty, although the administration does not believe that will be necessary. The number of tests will allow the HBCUs to test symptomatic individuals and 5 to 10 percent of their student populations a week.

“And if you start getting positives, you know you have that spark before you have a wildfire,” Giroir said.

Each school is expected to receive between 3,000 and 10,000 tests initially, and they will be resupplied “as often as they need,” he said. While the initial supply of coronavirus tests are anticipated to “last weeks,” he said the government could resupply the schools “as frequently as every week” if necessary.

“This first shipment should last them quite a period of time unless there’s a very unusual circumstance within that campus,” he said, in which case the federal government would surge tests and supplies to those schools

HBCUs are the latest beneficiaries of rapid tests that the Department of Health and Human Services said it had ordered from Abbott in August as part of a contract for 150 million tests by the end of the year.

The rapid coronavirus tests were sent to Howard, a private university, and 41 public institutions, including Winston-Salem State University, Fayetteville State University, Florida A&M University, Kentucky State University, Elizabeth City State University and Fort Valley State University.

Officials pledged Monday to send tests to all 107 of the schools that are identified by the Department of Education as HBCUs.

Giroir said the task force identified HBCUs for the additional support after conducting an analysis of the demographics of the faculty and staff at the schools.

HBCUs

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Worldwide Home Decor Industry to 2025 – Rapid Urbanization and Population Growth is Driving the Market

The “Home Decor Market – Forecasts from 2020 to 2025” report has been added to ResearchAndMarkets.com’s offering.

The home decor market was valued at US$1,233.550 billion in 2019.

Home decor refers to the art in which the residents aesthetically design the internal and external spaces of residential buildings along with making the fully functional for the use. Various products are included in the category of home decor products such as furniture, kitchen fittings, flooring, and others.

The primary factors supplementing the home decor market growth during the next five year includes the inclination of people towards high-class interior designing of their homes due to high purchasing power, especially across the developed economies of the region. Additionally, the rising consumer preference towards the purchase of eco-friendly products coupled with the growing focus of key players towards the manufacture of products made from various raw materials is also providing an impetus for the market to grow throughout the forecast period.

Furthermore, the rising disposable income across the developing economies such as India, China, and Indonesia has led to an increase in the middle-class population this in turn is leading to an increase in the residential construction across these economies. This, in turn, is also projected to amplify the demand for numerous home decor products such as furniture, flooring, thereby driving the market growth during the next five years. The changing lifestyles have also led to an increased demand for premium quality products is also positively impacting the market growth during the next five years.

Rapid urbanization and population growth is amplifying the market growth

One of the major factors boosting the market growth during the next five years includes the growing population, which is boosting the construction activities across the residential sector, as more housing units are required to meet the housing needs for the growing population. In addition, according to the data from the World Bank Group, the total global population has grown from 6.922 billion from 2010 to 7.593 billion by 2018. In addition, increasing construction activities across various developed economies around the globe is further anticipated to boost the demand for home decor in the coming years.

For instance, the total value of construction including the public and private for the residential sector has increased from USD$366,660 million in 2008 to USD$521,971 in 2019 (Source: US Department of Commerce). Similarly, in the United Kingdom, the value of construction of new work that includes construction in residential and other sectors at current prices continued to rise since 2011 reaching its highest level on record at 109,387 billion in 2017, driven by the growth of the private sector.

Simultaneously, the number of firms operating in the construction industry has also continued to rise in 2017 (Source: Office for National Statistics UK). Also, the rising initiatives by the governments of various developing economies to expand the residential sector is also projected to be a key driving factor for the market to grow in the near future. For example, the Smart Cities Mission

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