July 11, 2008

HousingPANIC Stupid Question of the Day


How has the Great Housing Crash affected you?


(Here's how it's affecting your fellow Americans)

Study: Mortgage meltdown will cause massive losses in household wealth

Due to the collapse of the housing bubble, the vast majority of Americans have accumulated little or no wealth and will be almost completely reliant on Social Security and Medicare to support them in their retirement years, according to a new study by the Center for Economic and Policy Research.

46 comments:

douche inquisitor said...

Douche sales have been down a little bit.

Stuck in So Pa said...

Not much directly, things just cost more, but I can afford it. I do sit up many a night worrying about my fellow man and my country though.

The little woman says that I worry too much. She (of head firmly embedded in the sand) is probably right.
America and its people are a lost cause and not worth the effort!

black friday said...

What a list -- because of the crash, I:
- Discovered HP
- Wrote to my representatives in congress
- Bought gold
- Had one of the longest belly-laughs on record

Anonymous said...

Yeah in a positive way. I sold at the peak. Sitting on piles of cash right now earning decent interest in CDs. Will buy my old house back for 40 to 50% off in a year or so. Yeah gas is more expensive. But that is peanuts compared to what I made during the bubble and what I will end up saving by buying a house next year.

All in all I say KUDOS to Ben Bernanke and Alan Greenspan. They've made me a lot of $$.

Andrew from Russia said...

> How has the Great Housing Crash affected you?

This question must be phrased in future tense for this part of the world.

> Study: Mortgage meltdown will cause massive losses in household wealth

"Wealth" that never existed, no matter how wide was the belief that a gypsum-cardboard box is so valuable to sustain 20 years of retirement.

It's A Creampuff! said...

The degree to which we are toasted marshmallow cremes (or snapper turtles, if you're Andrew 'Americano' Hack)is just becoming apparent. Personally? Retirement account nosediving - but we're all doing "income averaging", right? Not fun during a market that is ---insert euphemism for very bad here---.

Anonymous said...

I'm isolated from this. My house is paid off, no car debt, have a post retirement consulting job. Sure my IRA is down 8% from its high, but it's way better than investing in housing and loosing double digits.

I got to this point by saving and investing, not speculating or leveraging my lifestyle.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, just imagine if Bushco and McSame had of gotten away with turning Social Security over to the crooks on Wall Street in the form of private accounts!

Anonymous said...

It woke my ass up. I knew the prices hikes in housing were unsustainable, so I got out near the top and am sitting on a pile of cash. I left California for greener pastures in the mid-west and couldn't be happier.

I am all cash including my retirement accounts last fall, so I wait to pounce when the timing is right.

I am leaner and always looking for opportunities.

This makes me feel alive.

Kathryn in Blue Bell said...

Not so much. We bought our house in '95 just before the bubble got hot. We refi'ed once, mainly to lower our 8% fixed rate (yeah I know higher than it should have been) to a 6% fixed rate. We also converted from a 30 year fixed to a 20 year fixed so we will pay off sooner but the monthly payments actually went down slightly.

So, long story short, we bought for 220,000. At the peak our house was valued at 400,000 and is now at 368,000. However, we never used it as an ATM machine and don't plan on moving. We have a good amount of equity and fixed payments so we're in pretty good shape.

Also, one last thing, our house is about 30 years old in a very stable neighborhood, we're the newest residents.

I feel for the true victims, renters kicked out, people scammed by corrupt real estate agents and lenders (did you know it was legal to call certain types of ARM's "fixed rate"?). However, to all the greed heads that continued to blow hot air into the bubble, not so much.

Anonymous said...

As a businessperson: We've built and sold 4 beautiful custom homes; hoping #5 sells. Spec loans no longer available. Foreclosure of $700K+ house in Atlanta exurb subdiv that we build in has killed our asking price. Selling price on our last house was below prior sale even though cost to build was $40K more and lot was an acre bigger. Thieves have ripped off copper and furnaces out of everything we've built. Realtors' building projects in this county going sour (how would you like a $2M house loan hanging around your neck?)

As a private individual: Got a letter recently our house has gone down $60K in value; property taxes however have gone up.

On the bright side, the folks that have bought our houses love them and are very pleased with the quality of the construction and the service we provide.

GK said...

House I sold has dropped $70,000 on Zillow.

Gold I bought at $666 is up over 40%.

((940 - 666)/666)*100 = 41.14

My NZ dollars are earning 8%.

Being out of Debt to the Criminal Federal Reserve? Priceless.

http://cryptogon.com/?p=2890

The powers of ordinary men are circumscribed by the everyday worlds in which they live, yet even in these rounds of job, family, and neighborhood they often seem driven by forces they can neither understand nor govern. ‘Great changes’ are beyond their control, but affect their conduct and outlook none the less. The very framework of modern society confines them to projects not their own, but from every side, such changes now press upon the men and women of the mass society, who accordingly feel that they are without purpose in an epoch in which they are without power.

—C. Wright Mills, The Power Elite

Anonymous said...

If you did the right thing: saved your money, was prudent with your money, didn't waste it away on stupid stuff like iPhones, a 52 inch plasma tv, etc... while your neighbor or cousin did the opposite you are SO SCREWED. The government doesn't care about people who work hard and save their money and do the prudent thing, while people who do the EXACT OPPOSITE will be bailed out.

gwk said...

Looks like the USA will be taking over the big Mac's as the Treasury Secretary will be speaking soon on a monitor near you.

Anonymous said...

Both good and bad at this point. I made good money being a builder and bad because there isn't much work out there right now.

Saved for this downturn though and can ride it out for many years.

Burp, belch, Fart said...

Very Much. I am really worried.

When I hear or read a story about FB or families losing their 'homes' and being moved into the street, homeless and optionless, I burst out into loud, raucous laughter and glee to the point I fear I will require hospitalization soon...

Fat Ass Joe/Jane, your time has come. You and your disgusting stupid fat ass, diabetic progeny are doomed.

I will enjoy watching you suffer.

Eat some fried dough for me today at the gas station, swine.

AMERICA IS DOOMED, DYING AND SOON TO BE DEAD.

Mark in San Diego said...

My portfolio has taken a 10% hit, but since I have 60% in cash and 10% in bonds - the rest in utilities and Canadian oil stocks, and a few odds and ends, it isn't a big hit, and I am buying a few stocks here and there that look like they can handle the storm. . .actually, I am buying GM junk bonds at 54 cents on the dollar - in a BK, bondholders usually get equity in the company, and likely the government will get the helicopter and bail out GM as well. . .if you can't beat them, join them!

bitterrenter said...

Yeah, I sold at the peak, sitting on piles of cash. Also bought Microsoft, Apple, AOL and all my other stocks the day before they started their meteoric rise. Got into precious metals on the cusp of their incredible increases, too. Then there was the time I found a lucky penny that turned out to be a rare coin worth $1,000,000. All in a day's work. As I was telling Bigfoot and Amelia Earhart over tea the other day, it seems I have more luck than most.

Of course, on the internet, anything is possible!

YOU PEOPLE MAK ME LAUGH!

Anonymous said...

Well, in my case- I saw it coming but really couldn't do much about it since I am an 'average wage earner'. I just trimmed expenses and started to beat down debt. What else could I do?

In the meantime, I have tried to wake up fellow Americans to the growing tsunami headed our way. I feel as if I am holding a lantern in the dead of night and running through a sleeping village screaming that the top of my lungs to wake everyone up...yet everyone continues to sleep.

Most of the folks that I know are just playing it dumb...they think that 'after the elections, everything will be peaches and cream'....

I only know one person directly, happens to be my best friend, that has been directly impacted by the housing crash... I'll just say this - he lived in Maricopa, AZ. You can come up with the rest of the story.

At this point, not much else that can be done. To all the folks that are sitting around all smug because they did the right things...you too will be affected/impacted. We're all going to suffer the consequences as a whole. Not that I want too, but its how it plays out.

Hopefully, once the dust settles from the Great Collapse, we will all be able to pick up the pieces and yell...NEVER AGAIN!

Just stay safe folks...stay safe...

Anonymous said...

Stagnation. I should have been out of my neighborhood 3 years ago, but prices kept rising as I saved more money. Then they became so ridiculous that I would have to be a nut at my age to use all my savings to buy a property that will no doubt plunge in value and take away everything I earned over the last several years.
Really crazy..and the arrogance of those Realtors knows no bounds. They are still puffed up, despite everything.

Flipper the friendly 'builder'... said...

"As a businessperson: We've built and sold 4 beautiful custom homes; hoping #5 sells. Spec loans no longer available. Foreclosure of $700K+ house in Atlanta exurb subdiv that we build in has killed our asking price. Selling price on our last house was below prior sale even though cost to build was $40K more and lot was an acre bigger. Thieves have ripped off copper and furnaces out of everything we've built. Realtors' building projects in this county going sour (how would you like a $2M house loan hanging around your neck?)"

Good. YOU deserve it, flipper.

devestment said...

Inflation and deflation do not occur at the same time in all asset classes across the board.

I have experienced pockets of extreme asset inflation in different classes over the past 12 years.

I have periodically traded my overpriced assets for worthless US Dollars.

Now that the tide has shifted, my worthless US Dollars are gaining strength against the devalued asset real estate.

As far as housing in concerned, I am in a better place today, and can afford more.

Before the run-up of real estate, I could afford a 30% down payment on a house in the area of my choosing.

Today I can buy outright.

uscitizen said...

Like several people here, I sold in LA near the top. I had been laid off, and decided to move somewhere cheaper where I could pay cash for a house. So I moved to the midwest, paid cash for the house and started a consulting business, which I've been doing for four years. I live frugally and have saved 100% of every paycheck since last November.
I have never taken out a HELOC. My brother, who has owned his house in San Diego, has refi'd a number of times and is now underwater in his house. I don't have much sympathy for him, as he just blew the money each time.
According to Zillow, my former house in LA has fallen $280,000 off the peak appraisal.
I do worry about the current state of the economy though.

Anonymous said...

"...I burst out into loud, raucous laughter and glee to the point I fear I will require hospitalization soon...I will enjoy watching you suffer."

Hmm...kind of the same way I feel when I hear people whining about losing their factory job. So why am I the bad guy?

P.S. - The bursting into laughter and glee bit I don't do, maybe just a smirk. That's because I may be an asshole, but I am not a contemptuous asshole.

Burp, belch, Fart said... said...

"Anon said...
P.S. - The bursting into laughter and glee bit I don't do, maybe just a smirk. That's because I may be an asshole, but I am not a contemptuous asshole."

Please, please stop. I just called 911 for an ambulance. I laughed so hard I am spitting up blood now...lol

Standing Offers on FB Equity:

Real Estate:
Commercial: 3-5 cents on equity $
Residential: 1-3 cents on equity $
with copper pipes and granite counters intact and no fire damage
Automobile (2 model years or newer)
1-3 cents on equity dollar

All based on apporpriate due dilligence examination.

Boat: no offer = liability/useless
Wife: no offer = liability/useles
Child:no offer = liability/useless

Signed, RICH, RETIRED Contemptuous Asshole.

Back to your cubicles, Sheeple...

AmazingRuss said...

"Yeah, just imagine if Bushco and McSame had of gotten away with turning Social Security over to the crooks on Wall Street in the form of private accounts!"

If they actually had the money to pay the obligations under the current system, I might agree with you. As it stands, the best you can say about Social Security is that "it hasn't been defaulted on yet"

Anonymous said...

It hasn't, really. That worn news story talks about people who are also referenced as "your home is your biggest asset" in commercials.

9 years ago I told my wife we would move up in a few years. Then the bubble became so painfully obvious I told her we would wait a while longer. We're still waiting. I guess that's about the only impact.

Anonymous said...

"I do sit up many a night worrying about my fellow man and my country though.

The little woman says that I worry too much."

Your wife is right. You are a board-certified pansy.

All your post tells me is that you have excess energy and time. Well, that and you're a pansy. Get a PT job or a hobby, you'll look forward to getting some sleep each night.

Anonymous said...

I hope they know that Social Security and Medicare are also ponzi schemes that will collapse. When SS was created, there were 6 workers for each pensioner. Today the ratio is 3:1 and it is projected to be 2:1 by 2030 as 80 million baby boomers retire. Not only that but jobs will be lower paying, so the fewer remaining workers will be contributing less. No need to worry though, because our leaders tell us that illegal immigrants will save SS and Medicare

Anonymous said...

Yeah, just imagine if Bushco and McSame had of gotten away with turning Social Security over to the crooks on Wall Street in the form of private accounts

How about letting us keep our own money to save instead of forcing it away from us so some lawyer in Washington DC can play with it? You leftwing idiots are a joke.

Anonymous said...

We have cut-back on eating out BIG TIME thanks for being robbed by our Realtor.

MrCoffee said...

Well, in my case- I saw it coming but really couldn't do much about it since I am an 'average wage earner'. I just trimmed expenses and started to beat down debt. What else could I do?

In the meantime, I have tried to wake up fellow Americans to the growing tsunami headed our way. I feel as if I am holding a lantern in the dead of night and running through a sleeping village screaming that the top of my lungs to wake everyone up...yet everyone continues to sleep.

Most of the folks that I know are just playing it dumb...they think that 'after the elections, everything will be peaches and cream'....

I only know one person directly, happens to be my best friend, that has been directly impacted by the housing crash... I'll just say this - he lived in Maricopa, AZ. You can come up with the rest of the story.

At this point, not much else that can be done. To all the folks that are sitting around all smug because they did the right things...you too will be affected/impacted. We're all going to suffer the consequences as a whole. Not that I want too, but its how it plays out.

Hopefully, once the dust settles from the Great Collapse, we will all be able to pick up the pieces and yell...NEVER AGAIN!

Just stay safe folks...stay safe...


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

This is perhaps the best, and most sensible post I've read on this thread. Sure enough, folks are buying up oil and gold on the commodities bubble. But as prices continue the increase, some of that Texas tea will have to be put to use. The profits will dissipate in higher inflation, regardless. Same with noble metals, grains, and other goods. We need to turn our attention towards once again actually making stuff rather than depending on rising commodity values to drive our economy. We have a stupid fed and in idiot government. And everybody, rich or poor, loses.

MrCoffee

Anonymous said...

"How about letting us keep our own money to save instead of forcing it away from us so some lawyer in Washington DC can play with it?"

You righties are wound so tighty, you forget that the same dumb people that bought overpriced houses are too dumb to save for their retirement, and hence must be protected by Social Security, much to your dismay.

Of course I'd thoroughly enjoy watching a mob of these folks with torches and pitchforks BBQ idiots like you, but we're not there, yet!

Anonymous said...

bitter renter:

you'd be a lot less bitter if you had a clue about investing. i did sell at the peak. i did buy metals and i did sell most of my equities (wish i'd sold all). and i am loving every minute of this financial collapse and especially love to see idiots like you get all...uhm what;s that word again...bitter.

bitterrenter said...

Anon 9:05,

Every time there's a market downtrend or some other financial event, people like you come out the woodwork to claim to have timed it just right. The same happens when things go up. If you indeed divested fully from equities and had been in for some time, you are a fool. Barring a complete end to this country, buy and hold is an unbeatable strategy for almost every individual investor who has neither the experience nor the crystal ball to time things just right as you claim to have done.

Then again, being a victor on the internet may give one some semblance of success, I presume. Or, you could look like the bullshit artist that you are!

Now get back to work.

Anonymous said...

I'm not worried about my immediate family as we've got home-based jobs, no debt, and plenty of savings. Relatives in other areas of the country are living paycheck to paycheck and in recent conversations some of them sounded almost desperate. My brother lives in Texas and commutes 35 miles each way to his job. Rising gas and food prices are forcing him to look for a second job.

If the economy dives and there are big layoffs, we'll probably end up with relatives moving in with us - not something I'm looking forward to.

Anonymous said...

broke getting 4closed on and bk on unemploment and hiding assets i bought from a heloc and going after more govt assistance...

Anonymous said...

It will affect me in the form of HIGHER TAXES for sure. Yep, they'll tax a poor renter like me to death :( And all because I stayed out of the whole housing mess.

Oh and my 401k and other stocks are performing rather poorly, but I have at least 30 years until retirement.

Out at the peak said...

Sold at the peak after a 87% gain in value. Investments in metals, CDs, foreign currencies, canroys, preferred securities, and shorting RE related stocks have given me a overall 27% increase since.

Patiently waiting to buy RE again with a large down payment or cash.

Anonymous said...

I was the person who posted on having built the 4 homes, with #5 for sale. To the poster who perceived us as flippers: sir, or m'am, you are mistaken. We did not rush an inferior product into existence and cheat our customers; we built a good product, dealt honestly with our subcontractors, and so on. It is not inherently wrong or immoral to build houses and make a profit on them.

I agree that too many homes were built, too many unqualified people were given loans, and believe me, we had our bad experiences with slick, untrustworthy realtors.

Don't condemn all of us small businesspeople.

p.s. I took Keith's advice some months ago and moved out of mutual funds in my 401K that were heavily exposed to mortgage backed securities. Thank you Keith.

Anonymous said...

How has the Great Housing Crash affected you?
Oh, shut up. :)

Frank@Scottsdale-Sucks.com said...

It has helped one of my businesses tremendously.

In the sales training & consulting world, nobody wants any help until a recession hits.

Now, orders are through the roof, and requests for speaking and consulting are as well.

I thought things were good before but this is just ridiculous now :)

Chris said...

Mark in San Diego writes:

"actually, I am buying GM junk bonds at 54 cents on the dollar - in a BK, bondholders usually get equity in the company, and likely the government will get the helicopter and bail out GM as well."

When you say "bondholders usually get equity in the company", there's some truth to that, but it doesn't necessarily mean that it's commensurate with the amount of money you spent to obtain the bond. Usually you get a fraction of what you paid, unless the stock goes up 10-fold or 20-fold after exiting BK.

Also, it's likely that GM is about to obtain a significant amount of secured debt to get them through 2009. You have an unsecured bond.

And even if the government does bail GM out, it may be structured in a manner where you're screwed anyway. There isn't much historical precedent on this, so it's hard to say.

Disclosure: I analyze GM and Ford as part of my job.

Anonymous said...

GEE THE BANKSTER THAT LOANED ME THE MONEY TO BUY MY HOUSE HAS LOST 80 PERCENT OF THE VALUE OF HIS BANK. IM SO GLAD I TRIPPLED THE VALUE OF THE MONEY HE LENT ME?

Anonymous said...

WHAT DID HE WANT TO BUY MY HOUSE?

Anonymous said...

To Chris: ( 3 post above)

I have some General Motors Accep Corp Smartnotes 6.25% maturing on Dec. 2008. How safe are these bonds? I would like to hear your opinion.

Thank you very much!!!

Barbara