July 16, 2007

I am so digging CNBC's Diana Olick these days... And so counting the days until Harvard's Nicholas Retsinas is fired


Here's Diana picking up HP's flame of the corrupted and laughable Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies, and its discredited REIC poodle Nicholas Retsinas

Yes, folks, blogs can make a difference. Thanks HP'ers for fighting the good fight. Now do the right thing - contact Harvard's president here and ask for the immediate firing of Nicholas Retsinas

Here's Realty Check:

Housing Crisis Solution For U.S.: More Immigration?

An interesting op-ed in the Boston Globe last week from Nicholas P. Retsinas, director of the Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University. The premise: baby boomers had better embrace immigrants, because they’re the ones who are going to buy their homes.

Retsinas makes a strong supply and demand argument, citing that “the cornerstone of housing robustness is strong demand, and the foreign-born constitute a major segment of that demand.” He throws out some strong numbers; like that 40% of net new household formation in the first five years of this century was foreign-born, up from only 15% in the 1980s.

I get it, but is this really the argument we want to be making as a solution to the nationwide downturn in housing sales and prices? I don’t know that I want to jump into the immigration debate, but here goes: this feels something like the outsourcing argument. If we can’t support our own housing industry, then should we just bring in more foreigners to save it?

32 comments:

Anonymous said...

An interesting op-ed in the Boston Globe last week from Nicholas P. Retsinas, director of the Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University. The premise: baby boomers had better embrace immigrants, because they’re the ones who are going to buy their homes.
--

What jerks, they already passed over their ungreatful children! Don't *I* get a home???

Anonymous said...

Of course, he's got it backwards. It's todays citizens that will bail out sub prime borrowers, the majority of which are low income immigrants. Right from his own home state no less ...


BOSTON -- Massachusetts will become one of the first states in the nation to try to curb rising foreclosures by raising cash through bond sales, a move that will help create a $250 million fund to help struggling borrowers refinance and stay in their homes.

Fannie Mae, the federally sponsored buyer of home mortgages, will provide $190 million for the program announced Wednesday by Gov. Deval Patrick's administration. MassHousing, the state's quasi-public affordable housing agency, will sell bonds to cover its $60 million portion.

The money will help provide foreclosure prevention counseling to homeowners, and help those behind on their payments to refinance from high-risk subprime mortgages into conventional fixed-rate loans.


Housing agencies will negotiate on behalf of individual homeowners. The state will seek to have lenders absorb some of the financial hit from recently declining home values by encouraging them to agree to new loans smaller than the ones that got homeowners into trouble, rather than pursuing foreclosure.

"They can either accept 90 or 95 percent of the original loan, or they would have to take that borrower through foreclosure," Tina Brooks, Patrick's undersecretary of housing, said in a phone interview. "Foreclosure means making a bet that once the lender receives the property, they would then be able to sell it at a value to recover the full balance of the loan, plus all of the costs involved in taking it through foreclosure."

Amid the current housing market slump, lenders typically can't sell homes in foreclosure auctions at prices that would grant a payout equal to the original loan amount, said John Battaglia, a board member of the Massachusetts Mortgage Bankers Association.

So it may make sense to accept a smaller, refinanced loan in cases where borrowers appear able to afford new repayment terms, Battaglia said. But the state can't force a lender to do so.

"Each one has to be looked at individually," he said. "If you're talking about a 10 percent hit or a 20 percent hit, it's probably a lot better than foreclosing, because you tend to lose 30 percent or more on a foreclosure property."

Massachusetts is among many states that have recently sought to ease spiking foreclosure rates by tightening lending regulations. Because Massachusetts will now also back refinancing through bond sales, its statewide foreclosure prevention program "is the most comprehensive and flexible we're aware of to date," Brooks said.

The Bay State won't be the first with such a program. In April, the Ohio Housing Finance Agency began making refinancing available to at-risk homeowners, with financing coming from $100 million in bonds. Other states are considering similar steps.

Brooks said Massachusetts negotiated for months to secure Fannie Mae's help. Congress created the company to buy home loans from banks and other lenders and try to make home ownership affordable for low- and moderate-income people.

Many such buyers with tainted credit histories now face foreclosure because they agreed to subprime mortgages in recent years. Such loans typically draw borrowers in with an initial low interest rate that rises after the first few years.

Massachusetts' $250 million fund is expected to help hundreds of homeowners stay in their homes through loans covering up to 105 percent of the appraisal value of their home -- an amount that will cover closing costs, on top of the loan total.

Borrowers can be up to 60 days behind on mortgage payments and still be eligible. But they must be behind because their interest rates reset to a higher level; if they simply accumulated more debt through poor spending, they're ineligible.

Eligibility is restricted to borrowers with household income up to 135 percent of the median in the Boston area, and 125 percent in the rest of the state. Those ceilings now equal $108,000 in Boston and $98,000 elsewhere.

In a separate announcement Wednesday, Attorney General Martha Coakley said her office reached a preliminary agreement with subprime lender Fremont Investment & Loan to immediately halt foreclosures on the firm's mortgage loans in Massachusetts.

The state will have 90 days to review individual cases, and can object to any foreclosure where it finds evidence of unfair or deceptive lending practices.

Jim Lucas, a spokesman for Santa Monica, Ca.-based Fremont, declined to comment. In April, the company said it had agreed to sell about $2.9 billion of its subprime residential real estate loans.

Anonymous said...

Montgomery County Maryland washington post article on foreclosures

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/07/16/AR2007071600987.html

Paul E. Math said...

Bijon Frise.

Shakster said...

Hey La Razzle Wanna Hold This Bag?
I swear it's full of money,and wine,it's ok,I swear.Idiots,uh.....I mean,you're the greatest.

Stuck in So Pa said...

"Anonymous said...
Of course, he's got it backwards. It's todays citizens that will bail out sub prime borrowers, the majority of which are low income immigrants. Right from his own home state no less ...


BOSTON -- Massachusetts will become one of the first states in the nation to try to curb rising foreclosures......."

Do the math!

If the average eligible Mass FB has a $250,000
sh*tbox (and I seriously doubt that their prices are that low in Mass) then the state bail out fund can only bail out 1000 FB's at the most. $250,000,000.00 used to look like such a big number. There isn't enough money ANYWHERE to bail all these poor victimized LOSERS!!!

Anonymous said...

Maybe the product on this web site will help:
www.roach-killer.com

kitchenstove said...

Anon 11:08 PM,

Deval Patrick is determined to throw good money after bad and is determined to not get re-elected. Thank you for the update.

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately, my bet is that this argument would work and reverse most American's stance on illegal immigration.

We American's lost our way some time ago. Now it's just about the almighty dollar. I think most American's would turn their back on the issue if it meant more housing bubble money in their pocket. I doubt most would admit it but American's are famous for saying one thing and doing/backing another.

realestate101 said...

Unfortunately, Mr. Retsinas' is correct. Sadly, Gen-X'ers and Y'ers are either too spoiled or too uneducated from public schools to buy our homes.

I have a good friend that has her 27 year old son still living at home. Actually, he has NEVER left home. Does anyone see this slug buying a home? Nope.

herehirtho said...

The rich will be bailed out by the taxpayers. The poor have nothing to lose. The middle class gets screwed again. Is this country worth fighting for anymore?

Anonymous said...

Retsinas' logic is incorrect w.r.t. the price of housing. But that does not change the fact that immigration is generally a good thing. That said, with Keith's economically unsound biases aside...

Anonymous said...

"a $250 million fund to help struggling borrowers refinance"

Let's translate: $250M to help banks and other bag holders who pay the freight when election time rolls around. Nobody gives a rats ass about the borrowers, it's the banks who will benefit.

an idea said...

Deval Patrick is the bankers' governor. Pretend to help the poor while lining the pockets of the rich

BTW - Legal immigration is good. Illegal immigration is bad. That's why no country in the world would allow 12-20 million illegal immigrants invade their land. If these illiterate peons are so good for the economy, why is 95% of Mexico such a toilet? If poor, illiterate, uneducated people produce so much wealth, then Africa should be the wealthiest continent in the world. Many of these illegals are illiterate in Spanish as well. Their children have the highest school dropout rates and many end up joining gangs like MS-13 and 18th St, which have 100,000 and 40,000 members. Over 90% of the membership of these gangs are illegal immigrants or their spawn.

These peons won't be buying $500,000 houses unless HUD uses your tax dollars to subsidize them. They won't save Medicare or Social Security. They won't make us more competitive in the technology, research or manufacturing industries. We can get prisoners to do most of the jobs these immigrants are doing. Get the non-violent prisoners into the fields and let them harvest the crops. Better yet, we could train chimps to pick those crops.

Anonymous said...

your border is wide open,please dont let your illegals come to canada,they murder americans,they rape americans,they beat up americans
whats wrong with you people ?
can you not stop it? why are you in iraq? dont you crazys want to protect your own ?

Agent21 said...

"they murder americans,they rape americans,they beat up americans"

Just doing the work that Americans won't do...

Dave from Fort Myers said...

OK, I have lurked here for the last two years roughly without posting as of yet. What alot of these people are missing is the way the people south of the border think about home buying and life here. First, most of the economocally troubled come here not the wealthy Latins and if they do they only have a positive affect on our economy. But, and here is the key the poor by the you know what numbers come here in droves and game our system. As far as housing goes they pick up the slack in price by having their mon and pop live and contribute to the mortgage. The traditional way is couple get married buy a home and pay for it. Now it's two generations doing so. No wonder they can absorb the price shock, if at least for now. Cooking the books the average American has no clue!!!!

Dave in Florida said...

Wow, does he mention how much easier it is to have two generations paying the mortgage like most latins do.

Anonymous said...

UGH this again? Don't you get tired ofspewing this hatred over andover? OK we get it you hate brown people. Next topic please

Anonymous said...

"Unfortunately, Mr. Retsinas' is correct. Sadly, Gen-X'ers and Y'ers are either too spoiled or too uneducated from public schools to buy our homes."

Let me guess, you are a boomer? Don't worry pal because the joke is ultimately on you. However, like most of your boomer cohort you are obviously too blinded with greed and misplaced optimism to see it.

Enjoy it while it lasts my friend because soon you'll be feasting on dog food at your nursing home and wonder your gen x and gen y kids don't stop by anymore. Probably because they have to work 80 hours a week to make their mortgage payment.

How does it feel to screw the next generation and the generations after that with your incredible sense of selfish entitlement? If there is any justice in the world you will become old and frail and die alone in a pool of your own urine.

Anonymous said...

Hey, at least she can spell right.


We should let her in!

Anonymous said...

If we had 100 yr mortgages we would be in this situation. PLEASE PLEASE offer me a Century No-points interest only Mortgages. I don't care if there is a balloon payment at the end either.

vegas crash watcher said...

The nation-state is dying and national borders are absurd. You wanted a welfare state and now you're getting the cost of it good and hard.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
Retsinas' logic is incorrect w.r.t. the price of housing. But that does not change the fact that immigration is generally a good thing. That said, with Keith's economically unsound biases aside...

July 17, 2007 2:53 AM

--------------------

Immigration a good thing?? That depends on who is coming, how they are coming, and in what quantity. Being invaded by a horde of illegal Third Worlders is NOT a good thing.

I see you've been edumacated well.

Baaa Baaa say the sheeple.

Anonymous said...

realestate101 said...
Unfortunately, Mr. Retsinas' is correct. Sadly, Gen-X'ers and Y'ers are either too spoiled or too uneducated from public schools to buy our homes.

I have a good friend that has her 27 year old son still living at home. Actually, he has NEVER left home. Does anyone see this slug buying a home? Nope.

July 17, 2007 2:43 AM

-----------------

Hmm... at 27, when would he possibly have had a chance to buy at a reasonable price?

Never.

You spoiled POS Boomers have had it far easier than any generation in American history. It's laughable that you'd label gen X & Y as slackers when you've had everything practically handed to you on a silver platter -- cheap college, cheap housing, good jobs, etc... Younger people have to work their ass off for everything they want to achieve.

And now you're running this country into the ground, so all the effort may be for naught.

Anonymous said...

Hey, at least she can spell right.


We should let her in!
----------------------------

Her! punctuation could use a little work!

Guadalupe-Hidalgo, 1848 said...

Open the borders. We owe it to our neighbors to the south, to right the injustice of the Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo. Much of the southwest rightfully belongs to Mexico.

Anonymous said...

Her! punctuation could use a little work!

July 17, 2007 8:39 PM

=================================================

Close enough. I say we keep those who can spell and kick out those who can't.

Anonymous said...


Immigration a good thing?? That depends on who is coming, how they are coming, and in what quantity. Being invaded by a horde of illegal Third Worlders is NOT a good thing.

I see you've been edumacated well.

Baaa Baaa say the sheeple.


Okay. Let's just review here for a second:

You can't hold the incorrect opinion that the majority of Americans have and simultaneously claim that anyone who disagrees with you is one of the sheeple. Maybe this point is a little deep for you, but if you reflect on it for a year or two... maybe you'll get it.

james dean said...

Here's the letter I send to Faust:


As an aspiring upper middle class American, I and others are growing tired of the elitist rhetoric being proffered by the stewards of our educational establishment. Nicholas P. Retsinas’s July 8th article entitled The new homeowners is the latest example of this betrayal.

Another purported expert, heavily backed by the REIC, is now telling Americans that we should abanon our soveigneity and the rule of law in order to prop up outrageous home prices. Advocating the flood of mexican illegal immigrants as a solution to affordable housing is a smack in the face to all hardworking Americans who, now even with two professional-level incomes, cannot afford to buy their own home and start a family in a safe neighborhood.

The unconscionable greed of the baby boomers in ignoring the needs of their own children will be rightfully avenged when these same children someday become the power players pulling the strings and directing national policy. I encourage you to revoke Retsinas’s status with your esteemed university and refocus the tone of Havard’s discourse on helping Americans live better lives, raise better children, and be productive members of our society.

In the meantime, I will direct my efforts to discourage the flow of donations and grant money to Havard university. I am an activist American who spends much of my time blogging/ posting, writing/calling congressmen, protesting, and encouraging informed debate with friends and colleagues.

Anonymous said...

http://www.deportthemnow.com/

Sign up today.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

Okay. Let's just review here for a second:

You can't hold the incorrect opinion that the majority of Americans have and simultaneously claim that anyone who disagrees with you is one of the sheeple. Maybe this point is a little deep for you, but if you reflect on it for a year or two... maybe you'll get it.

July 18, 2007 11:17 AM

------------------

The "immigration is generally a good thing," regardless of who is coming, how, and in what numbers, is the corporatist propaganda pushed by the so-called "leaders" of both (deeply corrupt) major parties. Unchecked mass invasion by tens of millions of Turd World illegals isn't a "good thing" for anyone other than the ultra-rich who benefit from the cheap labor and the increased numbers of stupid consumers. The end result of this type of policy is a reversion to a feudal society with a small number of filthy rich robber barons ruling over vast numbers of poor illiterates.

It's pretty clear that the only supporters of the illegal invasion and the treasonous amnesty proposals would be either:
(1) the super rich (robber barons),
(2) La Raza (a.k.a. Mexican Nazi) activists, and
(3) brainwashed sheeple.

So tell me, 11:17, are you in category 2 or 3?

If the majority of Americans really are opposed to the illegal invasion and the treasonous amnesty proposals, as indeed they should be, then I guess that just shows that those in cat. 3 really are "sheeple among sheeple," i.e., dumber, more gullible, and more brainwashed than your average sheep. Congratulations.