March 29, 2007

HousingPANIC Stupid Question of the Day


Bitter Renters - are you getting some hostility ("shut the f*ck up you renting scum!) from your Desperate Homdebtor friends and co-workers now? Or do you just avoid all talk of housing collapses for your own health and safety?


77 comments:

Anonymous said...

I don't know about you guys, but where I live (bubble area) the drivers are going mad. I noticed an increase in aggressive driving, honking, crashes, breaks, yelling, etc. It seems that there are many FBs, realtwhores, and unemployed people pissed off out there on the roads. I hear car crashes every week now from where I live, which rarely happened before. There's some major tension forming out there.

Anonymous said...

Heh...the thoughts been on my mind for a while.

Real Estate will become more of a conversation killer than Venereal Diseases.

Seneca said...

I had some 'passive aggression'... or did I just piss someone off? Someone that walks by my desk on a regular basis to chat happened to come upon me whilst I was viewing housingpanic (I'm addicted to it, haha) and he and his wife have just recently purchased (about 4 to 6 months ago) an inner city apartment. I didn't make a big deal out of what was on screen but he obviously read it because he seemed a bit offish and maybe a tad down. Should I have assured him that prices don't go down, or if they do, they have already bottomed and are primed for growth? lol.

David in JAX said...

No. The days of Bitter Renter abuse are numbered.

Here in Florida, that was the attitude we were seeing from FBs between last june and this February. March 2007 was the FB's turning point from "screw you" to "I'm screwed." I think in June we will really see them crying.

Anonymous said...

I avoid the topic like the plague. Even if someone else brings it up people glare at me as if I'm gloating.

michael said...

still alot of denial in northern virginia.

the real peyton manning said...

Just about every doubter I know is starting to come around now. Now that there is very little debate, the housing crash is getting kind of boring.

Anonymous said...

They look so haunted. I've spared them the trouble and mainly kept my mouth shut. They know what I said many times over 2 years ago. Next time they'll listen more intently.

Anonymous said...

Send dodd a message to shut the F up!
Let the debtors sink as they are resposnible for their own actions.
http://dodd.senate.gov/index.php?q=node/3128&cat=Opinion

fishman said...

I dated a hottie last night and got her mad . She bought in Chandler , AZ one year ago. Housing came up as a topic. Opppsss!! Man , she got all bent out of shape. I guess she's stuck in Chandler for a while.

Flagg707 said...

I avoid the conversation. Some of my co-workers still drop by with those little flyers pimping out homes in "a great neighborhood with great schools" a few times a month. I say thanks and tell them that we are still saving up for a down payment.

Many aren't familiar with down payments and it seems like an esoteric financial term. They get confused and wander off.

I never say what I really think.

Anonymous said...

I leave it alone. When I explain that I am not buying, I say it's because we aren't yet sure what neighborhood we want to live in. The most I will say to homeowner friends is that I am impressed with the range of choices on the market. I don't want to pick fights, I just want to buy a house for a reasonable price, and I will.

The Thinker said...

The only time I open my mouth is when a friend tells me they are thinking about buying. In these cases I tell them my theories. The usual response is one of complete disbelief or some vague statement about how the worst is over.

I then tell them that the worst has not yet started and such events as the subprime meltdown offer tangible evidence of what lies ahead. The usual response to that is to tell me that things are different in this wealthy suburban county in the New York City area. This is not a place, they say, where people have bad credit and have trouble paying the bills, this is a place of great wealth and as such, the subprime mess is worlds away.

And that is where the conversation generally ends. But I am not surprised, if people believed what made sense over what they would like to believe then there would not be bubbles to begin with.

But then again, if people believed what made sense over what they would like to believe then we wouldnt have war, religion or homeopathic remedies either.

Anonymous said...

In December 2006, as politely as I could via e-mail, I told my ex-wife (who bought a building lot and built a house at the peak during 2004-2005) and her attorney that the country was on the brink of the bursting of the credit bubble that has been chasing real estate and that some economists believed the event would trigger a recession in the country (or worse). No one has a crystal ball but I suggested to them that though sales had slowed during 2006, the real beginning of the fallout was going to start taking place in 2007 and it was anyone’s guess as to how long it would take for the system to self-right again. I do not bring it up in conversation with anyone anymore because the majority of the people I know are my age (43) and nearly all of them live in mortgaged homes. Just a few of my older friends who are in their 60’s live in free and clear homes (lucky devils).

Smug Bastard

veritas_faust said...

A lot of despondent friends and associates. Some "don't want to hear it." Most just frown and shake their heads.

I guess in the end it wasn't "different here."

christiangustafson said...

Not yet, but this is Seattle, so everyone's still focused on the recent report of 11% appreciation. I do not mention the bubble at work, although among friends I'm glad to explain it to them.

Very few people have any understanding of economics or of phenomena like inflation and credit expansion. The reasons and underlying causes of RE asset inflation completely escape most people. All they see are the effects, so it's going to take a truly collapsing market here to get through to them. And then I'm sure it will be "Bush's fault".

My rent covers the c.1995 mortgage on a nice bungalow with a large yard and a garage on the north side of Seattle. All around us, GFs are still paying $380K for these ridiculous townhouses make of sawdust and glue. I bet the long-term value of these is about $80K/unit.

As for the indignities of rental life, I'm planting my garden this weekend. I have about 75 onions already in, but I have room for carrots, lettuce, several types of peas, squash, tomatoes, cucumbers, and a variety of spices such as basil. This year I'm going to try to overwinter some greens for fresh salads into 2008. I also have some WaMu puts that are growing nicely.

Stuck in So Pa said...

Depending on who you talk to, Avoid at all costs! It's getting real nasty, real quick for some.

The rest are clueless.

So who's on American Idol this week?

eternitus said...

I just don't talk about it, except on my blog... It's hard for someone to stab me electronically.

I note the price decline in housing, comment on the ludicrous nature of a subprime bailout, and would very much like you to check it out.

http://financeguru-eternitus.blogspot.com/

Anonymous said...

It's kind of like Fight Club now. A lot of people involved in it don't want to talk about it, except those who bought more than 3 years ago.

If you want the truth, just wander by your local courthouse for a foreclosure auction...

Anonymous said...

Well my friends who bought the $600,000 home in Vienna VA who I love to death but they bought it last fall I just don't talk about the housing bubble--they'll end up hating me.

Bake McBride said...

I know many are going to get burnt to a crisp in RE....but most of my friends into RE are doing fine. Part of it is that they bought 3+ years ago.

Example....One sold a beach front condo in Treasure Island, FL (3Bd/3bth...Bought for 300K...Sold for 550K this week. Did say that he would have gotten over 600k early last summer, but it's hard to argue with the profit.

Like anything else...the people that made bad investments will get crushed. I'm glad to see that my friends don't seem to be in that boat.

Anonymous said...

I avoided the temptation to buy with little down. I was old fashioned enough to believe we'd save the 20%. Friends/coworkers thought I was crazy.
It may turn out, our current savings of 15% (for a house in the neighborhood we like) may become much more than a 20% downpayment.
Hopefully that is how is plays out. Everyone will know when I buy, but I won't rub in how much less I spent than others.

FUNNOMINAL said...

Kidding? Total avoidance of the subject for my own protection!
I actually commensurate with their misery somewhat in order to have them open up about their particulars.
I'll also say 'what's going on with the housing market anyway'?, type of thing and wait for them to speak their mind...that way they can tell me the horror stories they've been hearing.
Serves me no good to gloat or make them more fearful of their future.
Messengers get killed bearing bad news.

Anonymous said...

I pay less than renters do. But then, I am locked in at 5.5%, owe only 100k on a 4800 sq. ft. home. On top of that, I could care less how much equity I have because unlike the morons who siphon that off like gasoline in the 70's, I don't need the $. It's well over $250000, even after the price crash. I happen to like my 2 acres of peace away from the renters and home debtors in their Ryan/KB/US home shacks.

Anonymous said...

Nope. My friends are convinced I am crazy for renting, still thinking their 1200 sq ft shack is worth $800K.

GT said...

i just had a conversation with a coworker talking about putting hardwood floors and such in. i'm like 'i thought you were trying to find another place?' he came out that prices in his building have fallen to 240ish from 290 in aug (he bought for 230ish). so he doesnt have enough equity for a downpayment after realtor fees and all.
i was smiling on the inside but played dumb 'oh really that much huh?'.
of course after all that he had to tell me, but it's a good time to buy. wtf

Anonymous said...

I get harrassed all the time for my comments.

Shoot the messanger.

Long live all us flying monkeys!!!

Lets at least profit from all this mess. I've $10000 in puts.

Anonymous said...

They still talk about the great appreciation rates...too bad they will not be in 6 months.

Sofia said...

This blog, specifically with respect to some of the new words Keith has helped introduce into our collective lexicon, is now starting to influence the MSM:

http://www.fool.com/investing/general/2007/03/28/beazers-just-the-beginning.aspx

as per the article above, notice the term real estate clerks as opposed to real estate agents:

"Lie your way into more house than you can afford and you have no one to blame when things go bad, even if the real estate clerks and their wink-wink-nudge-nudge buddies in the appraisal biz didn't exactly do you a solid favor by pushing you to buy high."

Anonymous said...

We act "too poor to buy" on purpose (we're about to move to our second bubbalicious city in three years due to a job change).

Both times, everyone in the new place always patronized us ("of course, you really can't afford the lovely 4-bedroom house on Lake Bankrupt and the two leased Hummers, like we have....")

We just smile, because that's not even close to true, as it happens. We cashed out of a highly bubble-ized condo in 2004, are holding onto the money, and have rented ever since. I figure this was my one piece of real estate luck in a LIFETIME, and I'm not about to blow it.

This second job came on the scene unexpectedly, so imagine the mess we'd be in now if I were trying to sell in this market to move 3,000 miles away! Is that not the stuff of nightmares?

Who, exactly, is everyone with these huge over-leveraged houses containing massive amounts of consumer goods trying to impress, anyway?

It's not like anybody's looking; everyone else, as ever, is thinking about themselves. I keep trying to find out without being obnoxious, but it's like they all are performing for an "audience" I can't see.

Even during the height of the bubble, I just didn't get it. Maybe that was my second piece of real estate luck, come of think of it.

Anonymous said...

HPers I want to thank you all.

I was a homeowner blissfully unaware of the goings on around me. Then sometime last fall I stumbled upon your blog. It caught my interest and started reading it on a regular basis, learning new things along the way.

Hmmm subprime mess, never read about that in the MSM. Hmmm David Lereah's bullshit, never saw that analisys on the evening news. Hmmm income to debt ratios off the charts, never saw mention of that in the local paper.

I suppose I always had it in the back of my mind that my home's 200% appreciation in 5 years was not right. But everywhere I went I was high fived by my friends, co-workers all of whom also experienced this once in a lifetime financial lottery. It was an echo chamber with no dissent.

Well due to a lot of the stuff I read here I decided to put the home up for sale. And it sat and sat and sat and the more I read your blog the more I though, holy shit this is all coming true. Eventually I slashed the price $55K and got a sucker, err I mean a buyer to bite. As you can imagine my neighbors were none to happy with me. Fuck 'em!!

Today the deal closed and I am a free man. Almost all of my belongings are in storage as I type from my extended stay hotel room while I contemplate what to do next. Should I stay put? Should I move to a new city? Should I rent a home? An apartment? So many options. I just hope I won't be priced out forever now LOL!! I took today and tomorrow off from work and will go play golf, relax, enjoy the beautiful weather and smile as I drive by "For Sale" sign after sign after sign.

I still think the majority of regulars here are delusional and paranoid (9/11 inside job, Jews control Fed etc). But I think you wacky fools saved me a crapload of money and I will be eternally gratefull.

Anonymous said...

I had a friend who played the real estate game and won a profit three times before buying their "dream" house.
When she told me that she was selling her house and going to buy another house I suggested that she buy a cheaper house than the one that they sold. I said that the economy is really not that healthy...after all we just had a stock market crash in 2000. I knew that the company that I worked for was making cut backs not expanding. To me the economy was not healthy to endure a long-term mortgage.
I am sure that to her I was a box of rocks and didn't know what I was talking about after all she had flipped three house successfully.
She said "Oh, no, David doesn't want to downsize. We are going to move up. We are looking to buy a house that is at least 100,000.00 more than our current house sold for." The area that they were looking in was a depressed area where most of the people there rented. There were few jobs to support the house they were fixing to buy. David was willing to commute 2 hours either to Portland, ME or to Boston, MA. The road that the house was on was on a dirt road that was not maintained by the county so that a neighbor was hired to plow the snow in the winter, as well as the driveway.
Five acres, a detached garage, 4 bedroom house with one "unfinished" bedroom in the basement which could not really be counted because it was in a place that was subject to radon gas. I asked her if she was going to get the house tested for radon. She said "No, that they liked the house and they didn't want to know; because if they bought it and knew they would have to disclose it to the next potential buyer." Funny because she had also said that this was a house that she wanted to grow old in; so why worry about potential buyers?
They were truly living the dream. All the girls were taking theater, piano, and voice lessons. They bought a new RV and were enjoying fancy camping trips.
During this same time, I found a small mobile home to purchase for a mere 10,500.00. The mobile was small 3 bedrooms but had been newly remodeled. It was in a quiet neighborhood that had a lot of older folks in it. There were huge trees all around and it was nice. We grew a small garden. We lived debt free and just 185.00 a month for the space. We sold the mobile a year later and made a 1,000.00. We has since moved around the Northwest about three times.
During that time my friend had bought a nearly new car and new front-loading washer and dryer, hot tub, and treadmill. Our lives were really in complete contrast to one another.
Now I am renting a 4 bedroom Queen Anne house in OR for 1350.00 a month. I have money left over to spend on hobbies and extras. If I don't like this house or the area I can move and I don't have to worry about selling my house. I am free.
My friend has had to discontinue the theater lessons. She didn't give a reason why. She has had some health issues. I don't really hear about her husband so I don't know how he is doing. The relationship is not as deep as it once was. I am sad about that as I really like my friend, but I am not surprised. She bought into an illusion... the American Dream. We are each a kind of oddity for the other to watch.

frenzy said...

Sorry HPers, Gentle Ben is revving the moneycopter and you'll see no big crash this year. Yes, some bubble cities will get hit and there will be lots of foreclosures on liar loans. But all that ugliness will be offset by huge increases in commercial construction fueled by easy credit.

Some analysts expect the money supply to jump $1.5 trillion this year when M3 increases, off-budget war spending, and deficit pork are totalled. And don't forget the trade deficit that will approach $ 1 trillion as well. All that means 10%-15% inflation which will keep house prices from collapsing, raise rents (sorry bubble sitters), and inevitably lead to higher wages.

Anonymous said...

I avoid the talk nowadays. Largely due to the fact that some of my home-debtor frieds still live in denial. (not the river in Egypt)

But if they choose to deny the obvious, that is their prerogative. I will be waiting patiently on the sidelines watching this debacle unfold.

amc561 said...

I don't say anything. I don't even try to inform people I know looking for a house about the market. If they want to jump into the housing market without doing any research, who am I to stop them or let them know about the current housing conditions...

Anonymous said...

no, most of the people I know, with a house, still see it as a "status symbol." I think 80-90 percent of Americans are in this category.

however, I don't talk about the housing bubble with them because I'm putting money in the bank, by living below my means, while they're not and it would be rude to say: "thanks for paying my bank's heating bill and my CD's interest.

Anonymous said...

Question: Is the housing bubble pop going to affect the price of raw (vacant, farm)land across the country?

Anonymous said...

Keith,

Youre gonna love this one:
Mortgage crisis hits million-dollar homes

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20070329/lf_nm/usa_subprime_foreclosure_dc_2;_ylt=AnVuTdPTHFnBWZkZeiMA_9.z1g4B

BWAHAHA!!!

MIsstrade said...

I wear my Mr. Housing Bubble tshirt proudly and have owned it since early 05.My decal is even washing off. I need a new one.

http://www.t-shirthumor.com/Merchant2/products/hbbl.html?Category_Code=newr

Anonymous said...

Well, I wonder how renters feel about this...
http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601039&refer=columnist_berry&sid=aBvuIZ6dy2BM

I own my home, and I am not a flipper. But this was to be expected.

Anonymous said...

Oh yes. The hostility is flowing like wine. They tell me, we will see in the end. You are just pissing away money on rent. I just laugh seeing how miserable they have become. But keep on planning my next two vacations for the next three months. We have been justified. Now we need to get ready to buy, when the storm is at it's peek. HP'ers next move is to try and call bottom. Tough thing to do, since we are only less than 5% there at this point.

greg said...

I recommend taking a little care with these kinds of discussions.

Mind you, I also sense some doubt creeping in that maybe the top is in....

Renting is not being knocked so much these days by those I know who bought recently.

tomcarbon said...

Generally, I try to avoid mentioning the RE market these days.

However, I was one of those sounding the alarm years ago, and many people seem to remember that.

They ask me for my opinon in mixed company; I must then put my diplomatic cap on and try not to get anyone too agitated.

Rusty Shackleford said...

About a year ago I was chatting with a rep, we were making small talk and I mentioned the housing collapse, ARM loans, etc.

The look of panic on her face was priceless. She said "Are you serious, I am closing on my house right now"

Haven't seen here lately to see how it's panning out. Austin is still "unaffected" by the housing market "shift"....righhhht

Anonymous said...

The homedebter who i am renting from and who baught at the peak of the market and is underwater wants to raise my rent 30%. He came over and told me how he is losing a couple hundred $$$ each month. I kept a straight face but my wife started to giggle when he told us this :)

Shakster said...

No,they're still too stupid to know that they are standing on the train tracks,besides I stopped warning them a year ago.Better for the crash,and the more the marrier when it comes to the slaughter.

Anonymous said...

No need to say anything. I just sit back and smile as I watch it all burn.

Anonymous said...

In this office noone talks about housing. If you do you'll see gazing looks out the nearest window where there mind seems to start spacing out. Then you get a comment like I would like to just go buy some land in Arizona and start a farm.

azwaves said...

Fishman's comments about dating made me laugh... housing has joined politics as a topic to avoid discussing at all costs. I rent here at ground zero of wanna be housing millionaires in Scottsdale,AZ. Renters are still looked down upon in the dating world even if we are financially better off... but that will change as more house flippers become burger flippers. The obnoxious bling attitude is definitely decreasing here along with the number of leased Mercedes.

Anonymous said...

In my observations, there is a strong correlation between recent buyers and violent reactions toward housing taking a downturn.

I guess the question today should be:

a.) Would you rather be a cash hoarding renter, or

b.) A cash strapped homeowner with a subprime loan falling behind in payments, possibly going into bankruptcy and loosing everything.

Anonymous said...

Funny, just last night at a social occasion I was assured that real estate prices will continue to rise here in Los Angeles. I argued that the prices have gotten out of hand and the absence of subprime lending will surely have an effect - the people I was talking to wouldn't even acknowledge this. I think a lot of people here genuinely can't grip the concept of how out of hand real estate prices have gotten over such a short period of time and how that appreciation can't possibly be sustained indefinitely. It is definitely hard for people in Los Angeles to imagine prices dropping significantly when all we ever hear about is the median home price increasing to ever more unattainable levels every year. I visit HP very regularly to reassure myself that a major price correction can and will happen - even here in L.A. where apparently everyone on the planet wants to live.

Anonymous said...

Only to a select few like minded individuals. Seems to be a common theme in date conversations for some reason:

One woman I dated blathered on about her equity so I stopped pursuing her.

Another woman I had a few datesw with expressed anxiety over the builder who was going to hold her to contract price until I gave her an article from the Wash Post at how lawyers were getting buyers out of contracts and getting their deposits back. Scored some points but it did not pan out for other reasons.

Current/new girl friend never brought it up until I was surfing this blog at her place. She told me she has a 5/25 interest only fixed. Not sure if she put anything down, I like her and do not want to kill the relationship over her housing finances.

At work a few co-workers give me the scoop in their neighborhood about RE activity & pricing and say I should just wait until FALL 07 when I lease is up to see what happens and possibly renew my lease for another year.

Key observation now vs a few years ago is that nobody is blathering about all the equity they have in their homes. Its no longer the conversation de jour it use to be.

Anonymous said...

I finally convinced my wife that we are not pond scum for renting. I convinced her to sell and rent after months of lobbying last year. I even drew charts for her to convince her how much better off we'd be doing so.

Well she relented eventually and we've been renting a gorgeous house for a little less than our PITI was for a similar home.

Up until very recently she was still pissed off and thought we were second class citizens for renting. Not anymore. It all clicked in for her too. She's happy about the decision now and actually makes it a point of pride in pointing out to people that we rent, what we rent, what we pay and what we sold the crackerbox for.

She may not have too many friends left over at this rate ;).

Anonymous said...

The good news is that housing blogs are popping up for many areas of the country. This is good. Buyers can now unite and bring some reality into home prices. Of course there is no greater blog than HP.

Frank said...

Not since I moved to Newport Beach ... around here people recognize that renting is smarter than buying for a newcomer in the current market.

Where I just moved from in Scottsdale, AZ though people have their noses 20 feet up in the air and try really hard to make themselves feel important so they still regard and treat renters as common criminals.

Anonymous said...

And that is where the conversation generally ends. But I am not surprised, if people believed what made sense over what they would like to believe then there would not be bubbles to begin with.
--

There are nothing wrong with bubbles....IF you are the first in and first out.

They REALLY suck if you are last in last out.

Anonymous said...

You wnat to see Denial in action? Read some of the comments on craigslist Rats and Raves in Las Vegas. Basically the story is, maybe we'll see a 2 or 3% decline in prices but by next year it'll be back up again because las vegas is creating lots of jobs.

Amazing.

Anonymous said...

I agree the road rage and people cutting you off has increased trmendously in the last 3 months. It is getting bad.

Steve the Dog said...

To Seneca,

You most assuredly should have told your colleague that all was indeed well. In cmforting tones you could have explained that what is going on now is called "basing" it is a natural market action - retracing from prviouse highs in order to store up more enrgy for the coming summer push to stratospheric new highs.

you could also assuaged his fears of interest rate increases by softlt repeating what loan brokers everywhere have been saying for years - the Fed is likely going to cut rates soon.

Finally, you very easily could have put the entire awkwardness to rest by using those oh-so-soothing words from NAR: "Now is the perfect time to buy."

That is all it takes.

Steve the dog.

woof.

David in JAX said...

Anonymous said...
Question: Is the housing bubble pop going to affect the price of raw (vacant, farm)land across the country?


The price of raw land in Florida is dropping faster than the price of unwanted condos. I get at least one e-mail a day from someone trying to dump land that they will no longer develop. Home builders bought thousands and thousands of acres that they now want to dump as fast as possible.

Anonymous said...

They should start a new TV series called "Desperate Housedebtors" where the wives have to whore themselves out to help the husband pay the bills on their McMansion in the middle of the IE desert. The husbands will be commuting 50 miles to work in LA and delivering pizza at night. This can be on HBO with lots of gratuitous sex and nudity.

corvinus said...

The problem with talking to the lumpen is, too many people have the attitude that, "if everybody believes it, it must be true!"

Those who question the system end up better off.

Paul E. Math said...

I only talk about it to people who are thinking of buying, never to those who have recently bought. It's too late to help those who have already bought - I'll let reality be the bearer of bad news. But those who are thinking of buying, I think I owe it to them to at least present to them the alternative.

I try not to be too pushy about my views. Perhaps I'm doing my friends a disservice by being subtle. I say things like "I'm a bit like a Jehovah's Witness on this subject so please stop me when I get too annoying". I also tell them that I could be wrong and often am so they should definitely do some independent research rather than taking my word.

The problem is, most people are too lazy and trusting and they don't want to do the research and they don't want to hear anything that would stop them from buying that home. They want the home and that's about all there is to it.

Anonymous said...

Free and clear at 43 with upper end home.

I saw the coming crash early in 2005. Paid off all debt, including the mortgage in the next 2 years.

Anonymous said...

The new MGM Casino in downtown Detroit was taking employment applications a few days ago for 1,000 new (low-paying jobs) and 26,000 people showed up!!!

The line on the sidewalks was major.

Many of them are about to default on their homes because they lost their jobs at Ford, Chrysler and GM over the last several years due to low-cost cars from Japan and Korea.

So what's next? A flood of new cars from China in 2008 for 5 times less then Detroit's prices! Yikes!

Catholic_homeOWNER said...

To "The Thinker":

My wife and I own our 4-bedroom home free and clear, and we are both devout Catholics.

In fact, it is BECAUSE we are devout Catholics that we shun the materialism that causes so much debt for other people.

We own our cars free and clear, and we have no credit card debt.

We probably would not be as happy as we are (even on a material level) if we didn't have the Catholic Faith.

Anonymous said...

We had planned on "buying up" in 03 but an illness kept us out of the market, and when we came back and looked around in the spring of 05, it was apparent the world had gone mad. After bidding on (and loosing) 3 homes, right about the time you started blogging, my husband found your sight. Reading the increasing number of housing bloggers, bearish economists and John Talbot's "Sell Now!" we were convinced the market was headed for a fall, decided to get out while we were on top and wait it out in an apartment. Sold the house in Octber of 05 (we cut it very close) at 130% profit, and though I hate renting, (we are in our early 50's and miss the privacy and quiet)it is wonderful to know we can probably pay cash for a beautiful home on a large piece of property once the madness has passed and sanity returns. Thanks for the blog.

Anonymous said...

You know you hit a nerve when the response is silence rather than hostility, the kind of silence that comes over someone when they start coming to grips with a terminal illness.

Anonymous said...

When people tell me they are looking to buy, I usually warn them to wait because the housing market is only begining to deflate. They usually respond with complete disbelief as if I've just told them there is no Santa Claus.
Usually though, I don't talk to homeowners about the housing bubble. It usually elicits sad or angry and irrational responses.
Case in point. A co-worker of mine has a house in Westchester New York. She's been trying to sell it for about $1.3 mill for over a year with little luck. She was complaining the other day about how she couldn't understand what the problem was. She essentially blamed the media for making people afraid to buy anything. She definately didn't want to hear that perhaps her asking price was entirely too high.

Anonymous said...

I assume you must all live in Phoenix or San Diego or Miami. I live in north Atlanta. Here renting is more expensive than owning even after taking into account maintenance, HOAs, etc.

I moved here about 6 months ago and rented a home before buying. I paid $1500 in rent for nothing special. Now I pay $1676 for a 20 year fixed inlcuding tax and insurance. Of that $1676, since it's a 20 year, I'm already paying about 400 in principle back and will get about $150 in tax savings ever month, making my actual monthly cost is about $1100 a month. All this for a 4 bedroom, 3200 sq ft, 2 year old home with a 1/3 of an acre. Add in $200 for whatever maintenance/repairs I'll have to make and I'm living in a better home for less money than renting.

HPers need to realize that there is a whole big world out there where there was no bubble and hence will be no crash.

rc said...

I have co-worker who has paid off his mortgage. Now he is thinking about selling to move up. When I told about how prices have increased 100% in last 5 years. He said he knows and one of his neighbors sold last year for 3x what he paid. Then I told him about
increasing inventory and prices dropping. He seemed to understand why I am waiting. So I sent he the link to HP and a locale blog. But that’s not what was funny. The funny part was when I heard two other co-workers (FB) snickering and hissing in the next cube. It was too funny.

Anonymous said...

WOW WOW WOW!!

Now aggresive driving is due to the housing crash. Right, because as we all know, pre-2006 everyone drove the speed limit, never cut anyone off and always always always used their turn signal and never got angry.

Hell pre-2006 there was no traffic either. That's all due to the housing crash too. I think cancer was cured in October 2005 and then due to the housing crash it's back now.

Crazy loons.

Ben Dover said...

I live in north Atlanta. Here renting is more expensive than owning even after taking into account maintenance, HOAs, etc.

Atlanta sucks BIG TIME. Air and traffic as bad as LA, with Rednecks, Peckerwoods, and Trailer Trash to boot! I wouldn't live in that shithole if they gave me a house.

benji said...

Atlanta is 70% blacks. Most of the whites there are carpetbaggers. How do you come up with full of rednecks? You must be up to your eyeballs with crap.

Anonymous said...

Interesting thread. This is one polite group. Also, I'm the bubblicious DC area, and either I'm insensitive, or the slide just isn't that bad yet. Denial, still?

josh in oregon said...

My wife and I moved back to our former college town to live a simpler life without the hectic stress of the city. We pay $575 for a nice 2-bedroom duplex in Oregon. The home prices in our area start out around $215,000.00 .With little money down, property taxes, mortgage insurance we are looking at $1600 a month for a mortgage. I'll take my little rental with a big back yard and save my money for a nice down payment a few years down the road when we feel that buying is a better deal than renting! :-)

Anonymous said...

The home flippers are the ones who hate these discussions the most. They go beserk when someone mentions that its a buyers market. Of course the real estate agents and flippers are out there trying to tell people to "buy now" to "lock in" before the "prices go up". Right. Greed has dominated the real estate market for so long now that people thing that they are ENTITLED to make huge profits on the sale of even marginally appealing properties. Its like no one wants a house for purposes of making a life - its all about "flipping" , infill, lot subdivision, mcmansions, and all the other crap that goes with the "Flip This House" mentality.