April 30, 2007
Lereah has directed NAR's research division, regulatory and industry relations division and other activities. He will leave the association in mid-May, NAR said.
Vegas: Flippers flop - "There's going to be a lot of depression, a lot of anger. A lot drinking, gambling, and desperate stuff going on"
Anyone out there still believe we're not crashing? Anyone believe those lying realtors in Phoenix and Vegas and Miami and DC and San Diego and ...? Anyone believe that the worldwide debt bubble and housing crash won't affect your town too?
While the Schwartzes were able to cancel before closing on a property that suddenly was worth only $490,000 — and recoup their deposit on a legal technicality — others were less fortunate.
April 29, 2007
Sobering video from the Denver Post on foreclosures, and the end of the housing bubble, Denver style
Everyone watch this uber-real video and read the excellent Denver Post series on Foreclosures, and the impact it's having on my favorite American city.
Denver had their bubble a few years before the rest of America, complete with mortgage fraud and an out of control and corrupt REIC.
And now they're having their crash.
Watch this video for a glimpse of America 2008 - 2010.
This will end so ugly. So very, very ugly. It already is in Denver.
Special Report: Foreclosing on the American Dream
Colorado leads a national wave of foreclosures that is leaving neighborhoods blighted and forcing many homeowners into financial ruin. In an ongoing series, The Denver Post examines why the state's foreclosure rate leads the nation and how it is affecting Coloradans, their communities and the economy.
Aggressive building and lending practices, lax regulation and a high rate of mortgage fraud, among other factors, are pushing thousands of homeowners into foreclosure.
Why is everyone seemingly so surprised with the housing crash?
Do we need to buy Manias, Panics and Crashes for every man, woman and child?
Geeze. It's just so damn OBVIOUS for HP'ers, and real economists (vs. TCDL).
So, when it comes to the housing crash underway, why are so many so damn clueless?
Vegas housing bull now calls "we've hit bottom" prediction "wishful thinking", predicts 20% to 30% price decline
Smith said any suggestions that the market was going to improve by the end of 2007 appears to have been just wishful thinking. He said a recovery may not happen until 2008 or even 2009 based on the current trends.
Smith said he wouldn't be surprised if some neighborhoods saw home prices drop as much as 20 to 30 percent because of a glut in those areas. Other neighborhoods where fewer homes are on the market would remain the same, he said.
The fallout from the subprime market has been felt by the housing market because of tighter credit standards, Smith said. In some cases, it's taking a credit score of 720 to qualify for a 30-year fixed loan. Those with scores of 680 have to jump through extra hoops to try and qualify for a loan, he said.
"I have heard this from builders and lenders, and it is not helping sales," Smith said.
April 28, 2007
Just read Casey Serin's latest post (he's alive) to get a glimpse how tough it's gonna get on a personal level for millions of people during the crash.
Longtime readers know that even though HP is HATED by most REIC (who stupidly blame the messenger), there are actually some real estate clerks and mortgage brokers out there who actually have ethics, morals and open minds (and are hurting big time - thank you housing crash).
Remember this open letter to HP from Danilo, an honest realtor who was fed up with the lies and corruption of his peers?
Remember Boulder realtor Osman, who shockingly called for The Corrupt David Lereah to be fired?
Well, I've found us an honest, ethical and humane mortgage broker to look up to - Morgan Brown who writes "Blown Mortgage".
Here's a guy who owns his own mortgage broker practice, and from what I read, is a guy who wants to do the right thing for his clients, who'll turn down business if it's not ethical to take the deal, and who is disgusted by the absolute scum in his industry.
Check out his blog, especially the "Why I hate my industry sometimes" series. I think professionals like Morgan Brown are going the right direction. The only real estate clerks and mortgage brokers who will survive these next few years will be the ones with honesty, with morals and with ethics, and who understand that truth-tellers like HP aren't going away anytime soon.
Or they can stick to the unprofessionalism, personal attacks, deception and lies like some of their peers, and go the way of the dinosaur.
Won't it be weird in a few more months (or weeks) when it seems EVERYONE is talking about the housing crash, especially those brilliant market forecasting realtors? When the masses and MSM are saying how it was all such an obvious mania or Ponzi scheme, and how they knew it was all going to crash all along?
Your home value is plummeting while your ARM is resetting, your monthly payment is jumping, your insurance is skyrocketing, your homeowners association fees are climbing, and to really twist the knife, your property taxes are going up.
April 27, 2007
"All the world's a bubble - The bursting of this bubble will be across all countries and all assets"
While euphoria sweeps stock markets here and worldwide, there are at least a few voices of dissent.
Grantham says we are now seeing the first worldwide bubble in history covering all asset classes.
"From Indian antiquities to modern Chinese art," he wrote in a letter to clients this week following a six-week world tour, "from land in Panama to Mayfair; from forestry, infrastructure and the junkiest bonds to mundane blue chips; it's bubble time!"
There’ll probably always be some doubt as to whether the $11 trillion housing bubble was merely an accident of misguided monetary policy or if it was part of a larger plan to shift wealth from the middle class to the ultra-rich.
By seducing working class people with low interest rates, policymakers were able conceal the real effects of the unfunded tax cuts, currency deregulation, and the humongous trade deficits. As time goes by, however, the effects of those changes are becoming more apparent.
The country has undergone an unprecedented expansion of personal debt which has engendered the greatest wealth gap since the Gilded Age.
The deep economic divisions are creating problems that could end in political turmoil. The present uneven distribution of wealth is inimical to democratic institutions.
We should anticipate trouble ahead.
April 26, 2007
My guess today is more deception. I don't think they'll tell the market what's really going on with their Alt-A portfolio until after it's really hit the fan.
Two articles yesterday here in Europe should give those of you in the US a peek at headlines to come there... Ah, the end of a grand worldwide game of musical chairs. Textbook financial mania (always followed by the textbook panic and crash). And remember, the rush to cash can be fierce.
For Brits fantasising about sipping sangria while watching the value of their Spanish holiday-home soar, the dream is over. After five years of double-digit growth, house prices rose by a relatively modest 9 per cent in 2006 and are expected to slow dramatically this year.
There'll be so many stories the next few years on yucky mortgage broker fraudsters out there.
If you ever wanted to see a profession that attracted low-lifes, fraudsters and moral scum, look no further than "mortgage broker". Unregulated, fast money, no education or training required... The perfect Miami, Phoenix and Vegas profession!
Enjoy this one from Dateline - go here for the transcript and all six streaming video links - that's some good TV...
Paulson on entitlement programs: "Rising costs will drive government spending to unprecedented levels, consume nearly all projected federal revenues"
Medicare, which serves more than 43 million elderly and disabled people, is in worse shape, with its hospital insurance trust fund projected to be insolvent by 2019, trustees said. But that also was one year later than last year's forecast.
April 25, 2007
A Bubble Sitter & Bitter Renter message to the desperate landlords ("Floplords") of America - You can't raise our rent (ha ha)
``Everyone calls these loans `liar loans' because we know these people were lying,'' said Jim Croft, a spokesman at the Reston, Virginia-based Mortgage Asset Research Institute.
Check out all three parts - here's part one...And compare Dr. Thornberg, a real economist, to the laughable Corrupt David Lereah
Posted by blogger at 4/25/2007
April 24, 2007
As predicted, the brain dead and worthless MSM lead with the change versus last month, down a shocking 8.4%, and go with The Corrupt David Lereah's excuse that it was "bad weather" and that he expected the drop. Yeah, right.
Some days folks, you just gotta marvel at the incompetence and laziness of the MSM... At the same time you have to marvel at the swiftness of this American housing crash that's now gathering steam.
Here's the real headline, care of HP:
USED HOME SALES CRASH 13% VERSUS PRIOR YEAR, MEDIAN PRICE NOW DOWN AT LEAST $13,200 OR 6% FROM PEAK ACCORDING TO FLAWED NAR STUDY. UNWANTED HOME INVENTORY UP AT LEAST 17% VERSUS PRIOR YEAR TO 7.3 MONTH SUPPLY. NAR MOUTHPIECE DAVID LEREAH HILARIOUSLY BLAMES HOUSING CRASH ON WEATHER.
NAR Data: Sales: March 2007 482,000 vs. March 2006 554,000. Median Price: March 2007 $217,000 vs. $230,200 July 2006 peak
And here's the one of many MSM reports using the NAR spin:
Sales of existing homes plunged in March by the largest amount in nearly two decades, reflecting bad weather and increasing problems in the subprime mortgage market, a real estate trade group reported Tuesday.
The National Association of Realtors reported that sales of existing homes fell by 8.4 percent in March, compared to February. It was the biggest one-month decline since a 12.6 percent drop in January 1989, another period of recession conditions in housing. The drop left sales in March at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 6.12 million units, the slowest pace since June 2003.
David Lereah, chief economist at the Realtors, attributed the big drop in part to bad weather in February, which discouraged shoppers and meant that sales that closed in March would be lower.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Reuters) -- The crisis in the U.S. mortgage market has hurt U.S. auto sales this month, General Motors Corp. Vice Chairman Bob Lutz said Monday.
Who says HP never gave you anything?
Bullion Vault, a partner I've used on HP for over a year to track live gold prices, is giving anyone who opens a free account a free gram of gold. I think that's like $15 or $20 at today's nearly $700 / oz gold price.
Hey, it's a start...
Interesting thing about Bullion Vault is you actually take possession of physical gold, stored at their facility (here in London, or Zurich or NYC) in your name. I have $$$ in the gold ETF "GLD" but I know many gold-bug HP'ers think that's a bit risky, since you don't have the physical stuff. Your thoughts on Bullion Vault, or any other ideas on easily and safely taking possession of the shiny stuff?
Enjoy your free gold...
This may be a big wonkish, but here's the dealio.
Mortgage backed security investors, who buy up the loans packaged as collateralized mortgage obligations (CMO's), had a bit of a come-to-jesus recently with the subprime meltdown. So now they've wizened up to the con, and they're telling the Alt-A (Liar's Loan) companies that they're not gonna buy their junk anymore, or at least not at par value.
Why? Let's me put this in HP terms. Would any of you buy up Casey Serin's Liar's Loan portfolio? Yeah, that's what I thought.
IndyMac is the big kahuna in this space, with nearly 80% of their entire portfolio made up of this junk. Nice business when the getting was good and investors were buying up any debt they could find.
But not anymore. Party over.
It's been fun to watch their CEO (and #1 stock holder) Michael Perry pump his stock to the dubious market, screaming that they're not to be confused with those yucky subprime lenders, and how all is well. You also have the CEO and a few insiders trying to confuse the market and stop the hemorrhaging (of their stock holdings) by buying some nibbles of their own stock. Man, sometimes it's just so obvious.
You have to wonder how long until the SEC investigation, or in this case criminal charges are filed. There's this little thing called Sarbanes Oxley, where intentionally manipulating your stock, or not coming clean about your financials or prospects presents a wee bit of a problem for crooked CEOs and CFOs.
IndyMax reports Q1 this week. Let's see if they come clean on what's happening in their business, or if they choose to head down the Enron / Ken Lay / WorldCom / Bernie Ebbers well-worn path.
Note - I own a few IndyMac puts, betting the stock will (eventually) fall. This one is the mother of insider manipulation and disinformation, not for the wary, but it's a fun ride...
April 23, 2007
Choice A: Do the right thing, appraise the property at the correct price, and never work again
Choice B: Do the wrong thing, appraise the property at the wildly overinflated price the corrupt realtor, mortgage broker and seller want/need, get the job and future jobs from the corrupt cabal, but know that you're contributing to mortgage fraud and could go to jail if the government ever wakes up.
The system got gamed folks. It was allowed to spin out of control. The conflicts of interest and quid-pro-quos make the NASDAQ bubble seem like child's play. And it ain't over yet.
The dubious value-add of appraisers - As housing market slumps, price-target pressure mounts
ORINDA, Calif. (MarketWatch) -- The solicitation that Texas real-estate appraiser Jim Amorin fielded came with a quid pro quo. If he'd appraise a mixed-use Austin subdivision for $25 million, the mortgage broker promised to steer 15 more major deals his way.
"After I asked a few questions, it became clear the real value was closer to $15 million," says Amorin, vice president of Atrium Real Estate Services. "I told him I'd accept the assignment but not with a predetermined value, so he kept looking for someone who would."
The pressure on appraisers to "make loans work" -- the industry parlance for hitting the number that a lender wants on a closing contract -- has been ratcheted up as U.S. home sales and mortgage refinancing have tumbled. By law, appraisers are required to render impartial judgments.
Federal and state authorities are now pushing for tighter regulation, licensing standards and criminal penalties to keep all players in the real-estate transaction process on the level.
"Mortgage and real estate brokers are paid on commission, so they have a vested interest in seeing that loans get funded," says Ted Faravelli, manager of the California Association of Real Estate Appraisers and an appraiser for 23 years who testifies as an expert witness in mortgage-fraud cases.
"If an appraiser speaks to the facts and indicates a market is declining and in oversupply, there's a good chance deals won't be consummated and referrals will dry up."
April 22, 2007
After six years of the worst, most incompetent and most hated president in US history, I thought you'd all enjoy a speech from one of the best.
Posted by blogger at 4/22/2007
hattip to http://www.speculativebubble.com
Posted by blogger at 4/22/2007
"Five months later, I lose $100,000 - I don't think I can take $100,000 into the stock market and lose it faster"
Hat-tip to housing-boom blog and an eagle-eyed HP'er for bringing us this gift.. And to Toni - The Mortgage Broker Hottie ;-) herself, for being such a nice representation of this unregulated, untrained and unnecessary business.
At what point did "mortgage broker" even become something society needed? Remember when we had banks? Remember when you knew your banker and he knew you? And wouldn't the internet do a better job than an untrained and unregulated bartender?
Is there any question now why the cocaine-fueled poser cities of Phoenix, Vegas, Miami and San Diego became epicenters of rampant mortgage fraud and historic housing bubbles?
Well, at least Toni - The Mortgage Broker Hottie ;-) has a fallback position.
Be gentle HP'ers... she's just a girl trying to make a buck...
Toni - The Mortgage Broker Hottie ;-)
Hi guys, A little about me: Well Im a Mortgage Broker able to close both residencial and commercial loans in 42 states.
I love my job because I get to help people get buy homes or refinance them. In the process I also get to make some money.
On the side I also plan events and parties in best place of all... Miami Beach. Im a night club promoter so if you need to get on my guest list, just let me know. On Thursdays Im at Cielo, Fridays at Dek 23 and Saturdays at Glass.
Who I'd like to meet:
Im always happy to meet new people. Anyone whos in the mortgage or realestate business, anyone whos into the nightclub industry. Basically everyone. So send me a friend request and I might just accept it...lol
April 21, 2007
Nah, home prices aren't in freefall. Nah, there's no housing crash underway. Pssst... someone tell that to Lennar!
But here's Casey today on possibly shutting down his blog. The internets just wouldn't be the same without his site, so hopefully some HP'ers, even if you don't like the kid, get over there and tell him to keep blogging. Yes, there's one thing bloggers do, and that's stick up for each other. Well, except for some of us that is.
Debt. Finances. Blog. Foreclosure Site. Negativity. Haters. Details. Follow-through. Partnerships. Opportunities. Job. Book. Success story. Big deals. Crazy ideas. Passive income. Huge deals. Goals. Focus. Priorities. Marriage. Values. Faith. Purpose. Progress. Time. Finances. Finances. Finances…
The pressure of it all is getting to be too much.
This blog is on the chopping block right now… I’m seriously considering stopping this whole thing. It has brought me tons of great opportunities and contacts but its also a big distraction. I must either stop the blog, sell it or find a way to keep the time spent at bay.