Homeowners appeal taxes as housing slumps

From the APP:

Tax boards face flood of appeals by homeowners

Homeowners battered by the economy are seeking help in unprecedented numbers from property tax review boards. Nearly 6,000 tax assessment appeals were filed in Monmouth and Ocean counties this year, pushing hearing dates months beyond the normal calendar.

James Stuart, president of Stuart Appraisal Co. in Freehold, said homeowners “are looking at appeals more closely than at any time I’ve seen in over 20 years in the appraisal busi-ness. People see it as perhaps their one shot at having a say about their tax bill.”

Most appeals are unsuccessful. Tax officials said traditionally about a third of the appeals receive reductions. L. Ozzie Vituscka, the Ocean County tax administrator, said the success rate of appeals can top 40 percent “when the housing market is difficult or when a large number of revaluations are updated. The percentage of reductions is different each year.”

Still, a substantial number of area homeowners are willing to plunk down anywhere from $5 to $150 in appeal filing fees. The fees are based on the property valuation amount.

“People are really hurting in this economy, and when they get a tax bill for $9,000, they want to take a shot at knocking it down some,” said Wayne C. Pomanowski, a Monmouth County Tax Board commissioner.

Officials said they forecast a larger number of appeals next year if the slumping housing market doesn’t improve.

The Ocean County board is handling 4,100 appeals this year, more than twice the average appeals heard in previous years since 2000, according to Waxman, who said the number next year could be in the 7,500 to 10,000 range. Waxman said the projection is based on the poor housing market and because revaluations are scheduled to be completed for 2009 in several of the county’s large municipalities.

Clark said Monmouth County also could see an increase in appeals next year. The Monmouth board received 1,800 appeals this year, he said. The number is close to twice the average of previous years since 2000.

The record number of appeals for the two counties — 10,175 in Ocean in 1994 and 7,009 in Monmouth in 1993 — came during that decade’s housing slump.

This entry was posted in Housing Bubble, New Jersey Real Estate, Property Taxes. Bookmark the permalink.

348 Responses to Homeowners appeal taxes as housing slumps

  1. NJl$ord says:

    First.

  2. Jersey Jim says:

    I’m closing on a house in September and plan on appealing my property taxes when the time comes.

  3. grim says:

    From the Record:

    Homeowners ask for firmer stance on illegal housing

    More illegal rooming houses are popping up in quiet, upscale neighborhoods throughout North Jersey, leading officials to strengthen laws prohibiting the practice.

    Boarders are often crammed into every nook and cranny. Bedrooms are turned into apartments for entire families. And mattresses are placed in basements and attics, renting for hundreds a month.

    “If you ask most people to describe who lives in their neighborhood, it’s not ‘Leave it to Beaver’,” said Stuart Meck, the director of the Center for Government Services in the Edward J. Bloustein School at Rutgers University. “Pick any suburban community and you’ll find tremendous variation… In some places you have immigrants who are sort of finding inexpensive housing and doubling up and tripling up.”

    A lack of affordable housing and the slumping economy make these unsafe living conditions a way of life for some North Jerseyeans. As such, homeowners are increasingly asking local officials to take a stronger stance on illegal housing.

    “For our town this has been a more recent phenomenon than for other towns,” said Ramsey Councilman Arthur Nalbandian, who chairs a committee drafting a new housing ordinance.

  4. grim says:

    From Bloomberg:

    Economic Slump in U.S. to Worsen as Consumers Get `Squeezed’

    The U.S. economic slump will extend into 2009 as the longest expansion in consumer spending on record comes to an end, according to a Bloomberg News survey.

    The world’s largest economy will grow at an average 0.7 percent annual pace from July through December, half the gain in the first six months of the year, according to the median forecast of 50 economists surveyed from Aug. 1 to Aug. 8.

    Household spending, which has grown every quarter since 1992, is projected to stall in the last three months of the year as the impact of tax rebates fades, wages fail to keep up with inflation and property values fall. The jobless rate, now at 5.7 percent, will reach a five-year high of 6 percent in early 2009.

    “The consumer is very much squeezed,” said John Lonski, chief economist at Moody’s Investors Service Inc. in New York. “The downside risks swamp whatever the economy’s upside potential would be.”

    Spending is likely to grow at a 0.6 percent annual pace from July through September, down from a 1.5 percent pace in the previous three months when the arrival of almost $78 billion in tax rebates helped Americans overcome the surge in fuel and food prices. Most of the remaining rebate checks were sent out by mid July.

    Analysts say the impact of the rebates, part of a $168 billion economic stimulus plan President George W. Bush signed in February, will be gone by the fourth quarter.

  5. grim says:

    From the WSJ:

    Mortgage-Market Trouble Reaches Big Credit Unions
    By MARK MAREMONT
    August 11, 2008

    Five of the nation’s largest credit unions are reporting big paper losses on mortgage-related securities, a sign that housing-market distress is spreading even to the most risk-averse financial sectors.

    The federal regulator overseeing credit unions says the losses are likely to be reversed when mortgage markets stabilize, and that the institutions are sound and adequately capitalized. But some outside observers are concerned that the credit unions are underestimating the depth of their mortgage-market problems.

    “This is a serious situation,” says Gerald Hanweck, a finance professor at George Mason University, who studies the banking industry and is a visiting scholar at the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Mr. Hanweck believes the five firms have sufficient access to funding to handle a deeper downturn, but he worries that perceptions of added risk could lead to a run on one or more of them.

    Credit unions are not-for-profit, member-owned cooperatives that take deposits and lend money like banks. The mortgage problems are focused on so-called corporate credit unions, which are key players in the industry. They don’t deal directly with consumers, but provide investment services and financing to regular credit unions, which do.

    The five corporates showing big mortgage-related losses, according to federal regulatory filings, are U.S. Central Federal Credit Union; Western Corporate Federal Credit Union; Members United Corporate Federal Credit Union; Southwest Corporate Federal Credit Union; and Constitution Corporate Federal Credit Union. Together, they reported about $5.7 billion in “unrealized” losses as of the end of May, the filings indicate. Unrealized losses happen when the market value of a security falls, even if it hasn’t been sold.

  6. grim says:

    From Newsday:

    Repossessions on the rise in slow economy

    From his office in Plainview, David Maltz has a front-row seat on the economy. And these days, the view isn’t pretty.

    Maltz and relatives run David R. Maltz & Co. Inc., a 30-year-old auction business that handles cars, commercial trucks, motorcycles, boats, real estate, restaurant equipment and many other items repossessed or seized for nonpayment of taxes. The company sells to dealers and individuals and works mostly for financial institutions and government agencies.

    About half the cars that come in have been repossessed, said Maltz, and the number has been growing as more Americans – their budgets under siege from rising energy and food prices and, if they have variable-rate mortgages, from rising interest rates as well – fall into a black hole of debt.

    So, too, have the boats, motorcycles and just about everything else they handle.

  7. grim says:

    From the IHT:

    Tighter belts await consumers

    Consumers in much of the developed world face a period of forced frugality because of tighter credit terms and steep food and energy bills.

    The $100 billion that the U.S. government sent to households in a stimulus program to try to prop up the economy provided two months of decent spending gains in May and June. Figures due this week are likely to show the money started to run out in July, with consumers once again buying just the essentials.

    Martin Feldstein, the Harvard University economist who recently stepped down as head of the National Bureau of Economic Research, called the tax rebates a flop because consumers spent only 10 percent to 20 percent and saved the rest, dulling the economic benefit.

    “The rebates added nearly $80 billion to the permanent national debt but less than $20 billion to consumer spending,” he wrote in The Wall Street Journal.

  8. grim says:

    From the WSJ:

    Slowing Foreclosures May Mask Breadth of Woes
    August 11, 2008; Page A2

    When the research firm RealtyTrac Inc. releases its latest foreclosure report Thursday, don’t be surprised if the number of filings declines again.

    Last month, RealtyTrac reported that foreclosure filings totaled 252,363 in June, down 3% from the previous month. Some analysts are expecting the July data to show another decline or very little change.

    If that happens, could the improvement be a sign that the foreclosure problem is ebbing? Probably not. The data may reflect several developments aimed at reducing foreclosures, including new state and municipal laws that put a temporary moratorium on foreclosures. Such laws are designed to give homeowners more time to work with their lenders and modify troubled loans. Some cynics say the laws are designed to give the appearance that the housing crisis is easing ahead of the November elections.

    Whatever the reason for the laws, they are starting to kick in. A new state law in California requires lenders to wait an additional 30 days after a homeowner misses the first payment before filing a default notice and use more “due diligence” to attempt a loan modification. The law took effect July 8.

    In Massachusetts, homeowners now have a three-months grace period after they default on their mortgage before the lender can file to foreclose. The Massachusetts law is credited with an 84% drop in foreclosure petitions — the first step in the foreclosure process — filled statewide in June from a year earlier, according to the Warren Group, a Boston-based research firm.

    “The 90-day cure period will lead to more dialogue between borrowers and lenders and increase the prospect that loans can be modified,” says Dan Crane, Massachusetts’s undersecretary of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation.

    Several other states are following, including New York which passed a bill last week that requires lenders to send a preforeclosure notice to certain borrowers at least 90 days before foreclosure proceedings may be initiated.

  9. grim says:

    From MarketWatch:

    re-foreclosures hit record highs in July

    Pre-foreclosures rose to record highs in July, according to ForeclosureS.com. It said notice filings for possible foreclosures rose 7% from June levels and nearly 89% from the previous year.

  10. Clotpoll says:

    grim (3)-

    An agent of mine unwittingly stumbled into showing an illegal SRO in- of all places- Far Hills! Locks on every door in the house…including the basement.

    The owner was a RE agent. Many loud denials of illegal rentals when we called him on it.

  11. BC Bob says:

    “The federal regulator overseeing credit unions says the losses are likely to be reversed when mortgage markets stabilize, and that the institutions are sound and adequately capitalized.”

    [7],

    Big mistake, waiting for the markets to come back? Sound and adequately capitalized? HMMM, is that Alan Schwartz ringing in my ear?

  12. Clotpoll says:

    grim (8)-

    “The 90-day cure period will lead to more dialogue between borrowers and lenders and increase the prospect that loans can be modified,” says Dan Crane, Massachusetts’s undersecretary of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation.

    How might this dialogue go?

    Bank: Pay your mortgage.

    Borrower: I can’t.

    Bank: Will you be able to catch up after the grace period ends?

    Borrower: No.

  13. Sean says:

    Here is a nice little report that was recently published from the American Enterprise Institute.

    Title – “Will the Global Economy Turn Down?”

    Conclusion -“Recessions That Occur alongside Credit Crunches and Asset Price Bubbles Are Longer and Deeper, Study Finds”

    http://www.aei.org/event1759

  14. tbw says:

    How are loans going to be modified unless the principal is reduced. You can only play with the interest rate so much, are lenders going to reduce the principal?

  15. Frank says:

    “Tax boards face flood of appeals by homeowners”

    I did my and got declined. It’s a waste of a day and the commissioner did not seem to care that property values are down. He seemed very uneducated about the RE market in general.

  16. max says:

    it is almost impossible to have you home taxes lowered in NJ. it’s a rigged system

  17. max says:

    unless of course you a pol, and know someone.

    perhaps your wife is on the Board of Ed.
    Your husband is on the town council,,

    you son is a cop,,, fire,,,

    or perhaps you know the tax collector,,(first cousin)

  18. PGC says:

    #6 grim

    Don’t you love irony?

    Financing: David R. Maltz & Co., Inc. is pleased to announce a strategic alliance with Indymac Bank. This will allow you to be pre-approved at no cost or obligation. Indymac Bank offers various loans products with competitive financing to fit all buyers. Contact Brett Van Nostrand at 631.232.8712 for additional information or visit Indymac Bank Online.

  19. Some Monday morning humor via Jalopnik , buy car get house for free!

  20. njpatient says:

    12 clotpoll

    That was some well-written dialogue. It comes across as so believable.

  21. rhymingrealtor says:

    Grim #3 & Clot #10,

    An friend of mine has taken to collecting and bringing craig’s list (illegal)appt listings to the town zoning dept they often put the address in the ad when they don’t, the picture is usually enough for her to know what the address is.

    KL

  22. BC Bob says:

    “I did my and got declined. It’s a waste of a day and the commissioner did not seem to care that property values are down. He seemed very uneducated about the RE market in general.”

    Frank,

    The commissioner did not care that property values are down? Come again? Maybe he reads your posts on this blog and you convinced him that the market was still flying?

    I don’t get it, you are appealing your taxes since property values have declined? Please explain.

    Why am I picturing Dumb and Dumber?

  23. 3b says:

    grim: I have been unable to access the site from my home computer. Any ideas as to what the problem might be? Thanks

  24. HEHEHE says:

    Tax Commissioner = political hack

  25. Clotpoll says:

    tbw (14)-

    Modifications that don’t involve principal write-down actually put the borrower deeper into the hole. The banks like to do it in a way that provides immediate relief, with the relief followed by a detonation of even more debt at a later date.

    The typical scenario is to take the arrears, penalties and fees on a mortgage, tack them onto the principal balance, then fix a rate for 2-5 years. Sometimes the lender will extend the term from 30 out to 40 years, in order to create the illusion of lower payments. The final result is always a sort of jury-rigged neg am loan that either leads to default at a later date and/or traps the borrower in the home for years to come (which is the real purpose of the modification).

    This idea of lenders writing down principal for large amounts of loans is pure bahooey. In many cases, these mortgages are administered by servicers, who have no legal ability to write down principal balances.

  26. Clotpoll says:

    Hell, even if principal write-downs were easy to pull off, how much of a write-down is required to help a borrower in a bubble zone who’s financed @ 95-105%?

    40%? 50%?

  27. Stu says:

    The property tax appeal process might be rigged in a few parts of New Jersey, but I doubt the issue is that widespread. What everyone pays in property taxes is a matter of public record and it stands out like a sore thumb if you are paying significantly lower taxes than your neighbors do for a comparable home.

    The reason two thirds of appeals are lost is that the appealer is clueless to the process. They meet with the appeals board and say their taxes are to high and they can’t afford it, but do not provide any evidence to show that they are being overtaxed when compared to their neighbors.

    If you want to win these things, leave your emotions at the door and start collecting as many comps as you can. If your home is similar to the neighbors and they are paying the same amount as you, well then you have no case. If you are paying 10% or more than your neighbors comparable home, then it is definitely worthwhile. We just received a $1200 check from Montclair from our successful appeal. Technically, we will receive this same amount every year as property tax increases are a percentage increase over your current base. Additionally, the house across the street from us which is very comparable is not selling for $50,000 less than ours is assessed at. We will be going back for more next year. Of course, the less people who fight their appeals smartly results in more money available for us. Our ‘lost’ retired Italian neighbors on our right will soon be paying $2,000 more than us each year. I like it this way!

    We are talking about thousands of dollars in savings, year after year. Does it surprise anyone that people who are too stupid to read the plain language on an adjustable mortgage would spend any time at all researching how to fight a property tax appeal?

    I like it this way!

  28. bairen says:

    An RE agent asked us this weekend why we weren’t buying in this market. My wife said because my husband thinks real estate is going to drop another 10 to 20% over the next year. The agent didn’t even attempt to persuade us differently.

    Plus I added “I’m waiting for my stock options to vest” Note: I do not have any, so it could be a long wait.

  29. bairen says:

    But if the tax appeals are successful, won’t the local municipalities just increase the rates to offset the difference? I really doubt the towns will cut costs

  30. 3b says:

    #29 barien: That is exactly what they will do.

  31. RentinginNJ says:


    Bank: Pay your mortgage.

    Borrower: I can’t.

    Bank: Will you be able to catch up after the grace period ends?

    Borrower: No.

    Phone hangs up

    Bank: Sighing…Oh well, at least we can push the loss out another quarter so this quarter’s earning appear a little less atrocious.

  32. Frank says:

    BC Bob,
    No, it’s smarter and smarted, because of all the negative news out there I was hoping to catch a break on my taxes, but values have not declined. In fact I was afraid they will raise my taxes based on the recent sales in my neighborhood. Most people asking for revaluation were complainers that had nothing to do with declining home values.

  33. Mitchell says:

    Been squawking about that for what 2 years?

    Its about time people started trying to do something about it. But then they had to work to pay those taxes so they couldn’t be at the county accessors office to refute the increases.

    But according to your Gov you don’t pay enough in taxes in NJ because that’s his plan for solving everything wrong with the state. My administrative assistant received a paper cut so we need to raise taxes. Then in another 4 years lets look at cutting spending but that just means shutting down parks or other creature comforts that keep people from going postal in the state.

  34. make money says:

    The American Dream is Just That

    In holding overnight rates steady at 2% this week, the Fed once again put forth its belief that despite a cascade of horrific financial data, the economy was likely to continue to grow slowly and that inflation would moderate. Although wrong on both counts, this view is consistent with the relative optimism that prevails across the country. After nearly two decades of an uninterrupted consumption binge, most Americans simply refuse to believe that anything can seriously derail the American economy. It’s a pleasant dream, but the wakeup call can’t be too far off.

    The benign outlook on inflation is rooted in the hope that a slowing economy will pop the commodities “bubble” and break the back of inflation. Despite these pronouncements, most rational observers understand that inflationary pressures are currently intensifying, not abating. Rising commodity prices are not the source of inflation, but merely the symptom of rampant monetary expansion from the Fed and other central bankers around the world. By all indications, the liquidity injections are about to shift into a higher gear. The recent housing bailout bill is the most inflationary legislation ever enacted and there is already talk of yet another economic “stimulus” bill. The new money creation needed to finance these schemes, together with exploding federal budget deficits, will not only reverse the recent declines in commodity prices, but send other consumer prices soaring as well.

    It is also worth noting that a slowing economy does not, by itself, bring prices down. If it did prices in Zimbabwe would be falling. When combined with responsible monetary policy, a growing economy would tend to push prices lower (based on greater productivity and expanded supply).

    As far as the economy avoiding a recession, the chances of that are fairly close to nil. In fact, if the government reported legitimate GDP numbers, the recession that is already being felt on a gut level would finally be officially recognized.

    One reason for the apparent optimism on the economy is the belief that the housing market is nearing a bottom. Every step down the housing abyss seems to convince more and more people that the bottom is in. Last week’s Case/Shiller Home Price report, which showed that real estate prices have now returned to 2004 levels, is the latest piece of such “good” news. In fact in a new national survey by real estate website Zillow found that 62 percent of U.S. homeowners believe that their home is worth as much or more than it was a year ago. Three-quarters of those surveyed expected that the value of their homes would rise or at least stay the same between now and early 2009. Talk about a field of dreams!

    However, given the horrific fundamentals of the market, I would expect that before the market finds a real bottom, another four years of price increases will be similarly erased; leaving prices at 2000 levels or lower. Although this prognosis may seem dire, it is nonetheless reasonable when you consider the current supply/demand dynamics.

    Despite the sentimental hope that homes are worth what they cost to build, or what the last buyer paid, in reality they are determined simply by supply and demand. In this case the supply of homes on the market, and the number and motivation of potential home buyers.

    First supply: In 2008 there are more vacant and “for sale” homes on the market than there have ever been. In the last few years, despite signs of a coming real estate bust, the nation’s largest home builders kept building. As a result, hundreds of thousands of unwanted homes were added to the market. These homes, combined with the existing homes that underwater mortgage holders are desperate to sell, add up to unprecedented supply. Inventory at the current sales pace is approaching one year.

    The demand side is even worse. In real estate, a buyer’s expectations for future price gains and their ability to obtain a mortgage (with as little money down as possible) largely determines demand. It is telling that the price increase optimism of current home owners does not extend to current home buyers. Also, with lending standards finally being tightened, buyers do not have access to the cash to bid up prices. Many are taking advantage of a still attractive rental market to sit on the sidelines.

    These dynamics are actually much worse than what were in place in the summer of 2000 when the home price boom was still in its opening innings. All of the factors that were in place to push home prices up to unsustainable levels (unlimited lending, massive speculation, widespread belief in the indestructibility of home prices) are all gone. Prices will continue to fall until all the gains sparked by these forces have been erased.

    The reckless optimism displayed by the Fed and current homeowners has proven extremely resilient. But sooner or later reality must intrude. Once the wake up call sounds, the economic effects will be severe. Once homeowners realize that their equity is gone, and not likely to return, what incentive will many have to continue making burdensome mortgage payments? With a new wave of option ARMs about to reset, this Christmas it will be the mail, not the bells, that will be doing most of the jingling.

    Peter Schiff Newsletter.

  35. NJGator says:

    Bairen – Yes, the rate will jump more to make up for the lost valuation. Montclair lost 80M in valuation between 2007 and 2008. They will lose even more next year. However, not everyone knows to appeal. Those who don’t appeal get screwed even more because they are paying the higher rate on the old inflated assessment. Our friends who did not appeal (foolishly because they are assessed more than 10% over than purchase price) will see a 7.44% increase in their taxes this year. We will actually see a decrease.

    Since everyone who did not get a sweetheart assessment in the reval – and there are plenty of people who did (It’s not uncommon to see million dollar plus homes assessed at 200k or more below recent purchase prices) – are assessed at over market, our town is a sitting duck for successful tax appeals. They know it too. They are very willing to settle before the hearing if you have reasonable proofs.

    Granted, our appeals are quite a bit easier because we were assessed in a revaluation at market top, and just need to prove we are assessed over market. Even if that is only 5%, we can still get a reduction. It’s much harder to appeal your assessment outside of a revaluation, because if your assessment is below market, the town gets a 15% cushion over the common level.

  36. make money says:

    No need to worry. FDIC is adequately capitalized.

    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601103&sid=abahg9z7p4wU&refer=us

  37. NJGator says:

    32 Frank – you are a moron. NJ towns can’t cherry pick neighborhoods to raise assessments in because of recent sales. Outside of a townwide reassessment or revaluation, they can only increase your assessment for improvements to your land or house.

  38. Stu says:

    Bairen,

    The total amount of tax dollars collected never changes due to property tax appeals. The overall change in everyone’s taxes will be increased to cover the shortfall.

    For example, I’m house A and you are house B.

    We both pay $10k in taxes.

    We both appeal and I win, but you behave like Frank.

    House A taxes are now 9K and yours remains 10K.

    The town needs $20K worth of taxes to operate and it appears they will only be collecting 19K. Well they raise taxes by 5% to make up for the shortfall.

    I now owe, $9475 but you will now owe $10, 525.

    Of course there will be a standard increase added to the 5% as well. This example also illustrates how starting with a smaller base ($9K) results in lower increases each year going forward. My increase ended up being $475, but yours was $525. And why? Because you’re paying for my discount ;)

  39. BC Bob says:

    Frank [32],

    You are so full of s*it. If property values were rising why would you claim that the tax accessor was uneducated?

    I still picture Dumb and Dumber.

    “He seemed very uneducated about the RE market in general.”

  40. Stu says:

    Think Frank brought any comps with him to his tax appeal?

  41. bairen says:

    3b, Stu, NJgator,

    Thanks. That’s what I thought would happen.

    Anyway. I’ll just rent for at least another year, sit back, and watch the carnage and quackerey unfold.

  42. 3b says:

    332 Franl; I do not even think you own a hosue. No reasonably informed homeowner would believe that a town would arbitraily raise taxes on houses based on recent home sales sales in a neighborhood.

    The emperor has no clothes.

  43. Frank says:

    “You are so full of”

    The commissioner did not care about the RE market at all, all he cared about were comps.
    If you showed him few comps and a good story you could have gotten your value down to 0.
    One lady was crying about the condition of her house, then he asked about the value and she said, 0.

  44. Frank says:

    “The emperor has no clothes.”

    Before you talk, go to a tax appeal or a zoning board. You will see the mess at first hand.

  45. NJGator says:

    43 Duh Frank. Of course he wanted to see comps. How else are you supposed to prove your case about YOUR house.

    Just because anectdotally the market is down 10%, doesn’t mean you should get a 10% reduction in your assessment. Maybe you were assessed low to begin with, and maybe your assesment now is correct. Maybe the average is down 10%, but your fancy pants neighborhood is only down 3%….or maybe your home that you were stupid enough to buy bidding 50k over ask in 2005 directly on the railroad tracks on a main street (because real estate was going to go up forever) is actually down 25%.

    If the guy didn’t ask for comps he should be impeached.

  46. NJl$rd says:

    (continued conversation):
    Bank: so, what’s your plan sir?

    Borrower: the plan is to have another 3 months rent free – that’s what the law about.

    #12 Clotpoll Says:
    August 11th, 2008 at 8:29 am

    grim (8)-

    “The 90-day cure period will lead to more dialogue between borrowers and lenders and increase the prospect that loans can be modified,” says Dan Crane, Massachusetts’s undersecretary of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation.

    How might this dialogue go?

    Bank: Pay your mortgage.

    Borrower: I can’t.

    Bank: Will you be able to catch up after the grace period ends?

    Borrower: No.

  47. NJGator says:

    43 Frank – Also – Maybe your town last revalued in 1990, so your assessment is way below the actual market value of your house. Then you actually need to prove that you are overassessed compared to your neighbors. This is a lot more complex to prove and requires more than than your first grade reading level to achieve.

  48. njpatient says:

    22 BC

    Logic

    Ridiculous

  49. 3b says:

    My wife and I have been unable to acess the blog from home for the last few days. We are going through major withdrawls.

    My wife especially misses the weekend open discussion. Anybody have nay ideas as to why we cannot access the site form our home computer? We have tried everything.

  50. NJl$rd says:

    Do you have internet access at home? If yes, you should contact your service provider for an explaination.

    #49

  51. Clotpoll says:

    Stu (40)-

    “Think Frank brought any comps with him to his tax appeal?”

    The only legitmate comping that should be done here is between Frank and lower primates.

  52. 3b says:

    #50 But it is just the blog that we cnnto access, everthing else is fine.

  53. njpatient says:

    Mitchell!!!

    How’s price appreciation in Charlotte?

  54. Stu says:

    NJl$rd:

    Try clearing your cache and cookies.

  55. NJl$rd says:

    That normally means that, this site is blocked by your service provider ISP (proxied or filtered out).

    The point is that your ISP control the network. He has the knowledge and resource to trouble-shoot for you. It’s part of the service you pay.

    #52 3b Says:
    August 11th, 2008 at 10:04 am

    #50 But it is just the blog that we cnnto access, everthing else is fine.

  56. Clotpoll says:

    3b (49)-

    The CIA is jamming your computer.

  57. Clotpoll says:

    3b-

    I’d come over and help you, but the dogs barking in my head are telling me not to do it. :(

  58. njpatient says:

    NAR, maybe?

  59. startingoverinNJ says:

    Appealing property taxes is not simply a matter of whether the market is up or down. That is why so many taxpayer appeals fail.

    Because the towns revalue infrequently, each municipality has a ratio that approximates the change in value since its last revaluation and attempts to correct it to this year’s value. (This is intended to value the various municipalities in a given county on an even scale for county tax purposes.)The assessment ratio is intended to reflect the relationship of the assessed value to “market value.”

    So, if you are trying to figure out whether or not it makes sense to appeal the taxes on a particular property, the first step is to multiply the total assessed value by the average ratio for its municipality. For example, North Arlington’s 2008 average ratio is 44.97. If the assessed value for a home in North Arlington is $100,000, the “market value” for tax purposes is $222,370.

    In addition, the law provides for a “corridor” of 15% above and below the assessment. In my example above, 115% of of 44.97=51.72. So, if the value of the house in my example is between $193,349 and $222,370, it is still within the corridor and still not eligible for a tax reduction.

    By the way, 85% of 44.97=38.22. So, if the market value of the home is between $222,370 and $261,643, the assessment is still correct. Be aware that if the market value of the home in my example is actually above $261,643, and its owner appealed, the municipality could cross-claim for the taxes on the property to be increased. (Technically, the municipality or any property owner in it could appeal the taxes on an underassessed home, but that almost never happens. Think flaming bags of dog poop on the porch and more serious retaliation.)

  60. bairen says:

    #53 NJP,

    I’m going with down. I still think Charlotte will see double digit drops this year.

  61. NJl$rd says:

    That’s brilliant. Do you have the contact of that woman? I’ll be more than happy to pay for her service on a few houses of mine.

    #43 Frank Says:
    August 11th, 2008 at 9:41 am

    “You are so full of”

    The commissioner did not care about the RE market at all, all he cared about were comps.
    If you showed him few comps and a good story you could have gotten your value down to 0.
    One lady was crying about the condition of her house, then he asked about the value and she said, 0.

  62. Clotpoll says:

    Fun fact of the day:

    The Dow has never in its history had a one-day, 300+ point upward move in a bull market. Every single time, it has been a bear rally.

    Every. Single. Time.

  63. startingoverinNJ says:

    If anybody wants the ratios for a particular town, e-mail me through Grim and I will send them along.

    I’m an attorney but I don’t do property tax appeals. Most attorney who do and who are good will turn down single family homes because they cannot earn enough on a percentage of the tax savings (contingency) to make it profitable. But a capable homeowner can usually do OK. The problem is that folks don’t understand the convoluted formula.

  64. Clotpoll says:

    A little charting and backup on (62)-

    http://tinyurl.com/66nznq

  65. kettle1 says:

    Mitchell,

    i am actually curious about charlotte, my brother lives there and has started talking about buying. so what the scoop Mr NC

    3b,

    what web browser are you using?

  66. njpatient says:

    60 bairen

    It already has. I was needling Mitchell.

  67. NJGator says:

    63 Starting:

    Here’s a link to the PDF of the 2008 ratios from the State’s website.

    http://www.state.nj.us/treasury/taxation/pdf/lpt/chap123/chapter123statewide.pdf

  68. startingoverinNJ says:

    Thanks for saving my time, Gator. I’ve was just looking at a print-out on my desk from my firm’s tax appeal guy since I’m looking to buy between now and next summer, and the taxes are horrendous in some of my target towns. I should have known the chart would be on the web somewhere.

  69. BC Bob says:

    startingover[59],

    Are you from NA?

  70. NJGator says:

    68 Starting – Glad to help. I understand crazy high taxes. Our taxes are so mad that our modes assessment reduction reduced our taxes by almost $1300 last year.

    Stu and I are actively rooting for the house across the street to sell low, as it will be comp #1 for our 2009 appeal. We are the only homeowners on our block actively rooting for the market to tank!

  71. tbw says:

    Peg Watkins is blocking this site.

  72. startingoverinNJ says:

    NA?

  73. kettle1 says:

    here is a chart similar to clotts, but for oil. it looks like we may be seeing a 30% growth trend

    http://tinyurl.com/5d58bs

    notice that most of the drops are soon followed by greater increases.

  74. Clotpoll says:

    Charlotte? Trouble? Why, they have BAC and Wachovia as two of their biggest employers. No trouble there.

    Even if the banks tank, everyone can go to work for NASCAR and the pork rind industry.

    [sarcasm off]

  75. Rich In NNJ says:

    Well, if Frank didn’t bring any facts to the table at least he brought up a good subject and some knowledgeable responses.

    Thinking you can get your taxes reduced due to “news stories” and believing inflation puts money in your pocket.
    Oh bother.

    We need an informed contrarian at this site. I miss Pretorius.

  76. bairen says:

    #74 Clot

    Don’t forget Loews is based there too, and since people can’t sell their houses, we all know they will tap into the equity in their houses and cars to renovate.

    / off sarcasm

  77. BC Bob says:

    “NA?”

    startingover[72],

    Your post regarding North Arlington.

  78. Clotpoll says:

    Rich (75)-

    Unfortunately, being a contrarian around here puts you on the short list for a pole-axing. 18 months ago, I was a contrarian. Lucky for me, I woke up. If not, I’d be out of business.

  79. GetAClueNJ says:

    I’m closing on a house tomorrow, and I was thinking of appealing the current tax assessment, as the 2007 assessed value is $30k over what I paid for the house.

  80. startingoverinNJ says:

    BC Bob: Oh, duh! No, I just picked a Bergen county town at random because I think a good portion of the participants are from that area.

  81. NJGator says:

    79 Get – I’d say you have a good shot, but it’s not a guarantee. Did the seller try unsuccessfully to sell at or above the assessment? Also, if you have any direct relationship to the seller, the sale might not be considered usable. Are there other recent, higher sales in your neighborhood for a comparable house?

  82. Clotpoll says:

    bairen (76)-

    Lowe’s? Har!

    Walked into the Lowe’s near me last weekend. Had the whole joint to myself. Three people came over to help me. I couldn’t figure out whether to feel special…or trapped.

  83. 3b says:

    #75 Rich:We need an informed contrarian at this site. I miss Pretorius.

    Sarcasm off hopefully???

  84. reinvestor X says:

    3b Says:
    August 11th, 2008 at 9:57 am
    My wife and I have been unable to acess the blog from home for the last few days. We are going through major withdrawls.

    My wife especially misses the weekend open discussion. Anybody have nay ideas as to why we cannot access the site form our home computer? We have tried everything.

    Good. I hope it stays blocked.

  85. Clotpoll says:

    Could the media ignore this more fully?:

    TBILISI, Georgia (AP) – Russia opened a second front of fighting in Georgia on Monday, sending armored vehicles beyond two breakaway provinces and seizing a military base in the country’s west, Georgia’s Defense Ministry and a Russian official said.
    The development indicates that Russian troops have invaded Georgia proper from the separatist province of Abkhazia while most Georgian forces are locked up in fighting around another breakaway region of South Ossetia.
    Nana Intskerveli, the Defense Ministry’s spokeswoman, said Russian armored personnel carriers rolled into the base in Senaki, about 20 miles inland from the Black Sea port of Poti.
    In Moscow, a government official who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to give his name, confirmed the move into Senaki and said it was intended to prevent Georgian troops from concentrating.

  86. Rich In NNJ says:

    Clot (78),

    18 months ago, I was a contrarian.

    Ahhh yes. Good times, good times.

  87. 3b says:

    #65 kettle: I have Opt on line.

  88. reinvestor X says:

    It is high damn time for us to put the communist Ruskies in their place. This is total bullspit on their part. What they really want to do is seize that damn pipeline and we can’t have that.

    It’s time to give those commies an ultimatum. Pull the hell out of our ally, or we start to kick some azz. They and Iran are secret allies and that’s all the more reason to draw the line in the sand.

    Clotpoll Says:
    August 11th, 2008 at 11:04 am
    Could the media ignore this more fully?:

    TBILISI, Georgia (AP) – Russia opened a second front of fighting in Georgia on Monday, sending armored vehicles beyond two breakaway provinces and seizing a military base in the country’s west, Georgia’s Defense Ministry and a Russian official said.
    The development indicates that Russian troops have invaded Georgia proper from the separatist province of Abkhazia while most Georgian forces are locked up in fighting around another breakaway region of South Ossetia.
    Nana Intskerveli, the Defense Ministry’s spokeswoman, said Russian armored personnel carriers rolled into the base in Senaki, about 20 miles inland from the Black Sea port of Poti.
    In Moscow, a government official who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to give his name, confirmed the move into Senaki and said it was intended to prevent Georgian troops from concentrating.

  89. BC Bob says:

    “18 months ago, I was a contrarian.”

    Clot,

    I forgot about that. What did it take, about a week?

  90. RentinginNJ says:

    Fun fact of the day:

    The Dow has never in its history had a one-day, 300+ point upward move in a bull market. Every single time, it has been a bear rally.

    …The 10 single best days in the history of the Dow occurred during the Great Depression

  91. 3b says:

    #85 clot: I am shocked that this is so over looked in the media.

    Also I may get hammered on this, but the Russians at least initally were not all wrong.

  92. 3b says:

    #84 And I hope you cotninue to be a moron.

  93. BC Bob says:

    “What they really want to do is seize that damn pipeline and we can’t have that.”

    50.5,

    Exactly. Are they trying to send a message to Europe?

    I’m agreeing with 50.5?

  94. reinvestor X says:

    Why am I not surprised that you symphatize with the commies? There’s no justification for what they’re doing. That province was a part of Georgia and they were right to take it into their fold. The ruskies were interfering and looking to provoke Georgia so they could seize that pipeline.

    3b Says:
    August 11th, 2008 at 11:09 am
    #85 clot: I am shocked that this is so over looked in the media.

    Also I may get hammered on this, but the Russians at least initally were not all wrong.

  95. RentinginNJ says:

    I’m closing on a house tomorrow, and I was thinking of appealing the current tax assessment, as the 2007 assessed value is $30k over what I paid for the house

    The assessment can be higher than the “true value”. It needs to be more than a 15% higher to win a tax appeal.

  96. kettle1 says:

    clot 3b,

    Expanding control over regional energy sources could also be on the agenda here. this sounds very much like a proxy conflict between the east and west, cold war fun&games redux. israel and the US have been supporting the georgian military and pushing for them to be admitted to NATO against russia’s strong objections

    The conflict over South Ossetia has prompted the suspension of shipments of Azeri crude oil and refined fuel from two of Georgia’s ports, Azerbaijan’s state energy firm SOCAR said on Saturday.

    Kazakhstan also stopped shipments of its crude from Georgia’s Batumi. Neither Azerbaijan nor Kazakhstan rely on Georgian ports for their exports as both also use crude pipelines.

    A major oil pipeline exporting Azeri crude passes through Georgia but was disabled last week on Turkish territory before the conflict erupted.

  97. reinvestor X says:

    “Exactly. Are they trying to send a message to Europe?”

    They’re sending a message to Europe and the US. They’re flexing their muscles after having bulked up economically. The relationship that must be watched is between them and Iran. They have a secret alliance.

  98. Clotpoll says:

    BC (89)-

    All it took was five straight listing appointments with homeowners in negative equity.

  99. scribe says:

    3b,

    Call your internet provider.

    The ISPs can sometimes create spam filters that inadvertently block the sites you want to access.

    There’s a process for un-doing the block.

    I’m not enough of a geek to tell you what it is.

  100. BC Bob says:

    Clot,

    What % of the listings, in your area, are short sales?

  101. NJGator says:

    95 Renting – That’s not correct. The ceiling for your assessment is market value. You can be 1% over market and successfully appeal your assessment down. If you look at the PDF for the town ratios that was liked to earlier, it speifically states that “Ratios in excess of 100% are to be considered 100%”.

  102. Clotpoll says:

    tard (97)-

    “They have a secret alliance.”

    Tard, does that mean they all wear secret decoder rings, too?

    Here’s a not-so-secret alliance:

    your head = your butt

  103. ADA says:

    from last night’s thread,

    Tom, Laughing,

    Yes, 3150 is just my mortgage but that’s what Laughing was referring to in his post #305. My total PITI is 4138.

    “Disagree. I think even if you are in that range, you should put a cap at 500k. Just one man’s thought: If you buy a 600k house and put down 20%, you’re seriously looking at a 4000 mortgage each month for the next 3000 years. That’s JUST the mortgage.

    This leaves very little room for error in terms of getting fired, having kids going on nice vacations, etc.

    Again, one man’s opinion – we’d much rather keep our mortgage in the 2500-3000 range by putting down 40%.”

  104. kettle1 says:

    Re101

    the connections between Iran and russia are not a secret to anyone, except you apparently

  105. 3b says:

    #94 rediaperwipe: Ah no it was not a part of Gerogia.

    The Ossetians were absorbed by the Russian Empire in the 16/1700’s. And right or wrong have been for the most part loyal to Russia as the Russians offered protection from other hostile groups in the area.

    During Stalin’s rule ( a Georgian) he split Ossetia into 2 sections, with North Ossetia remaining in Russia and South Ossetia becoming part of Georgia.

    With the collapse of the Soviet Union, the South Ossetians threw off Georgian rule, and have advocated being reunited with North Ossetia as part of Russia.

    You are just another typical uninformed dumb American.

  106. 3b says:

    #99 scribe: Thanks I will do that. Interesting though that after all this time, that this site is blocked.

  107. Sean says:

    re; #85 There are 150 American military advisors in Georgia training their military, they may have even been on that base that was bombed by the Russians today.

    You can bet if some of these American military folks get killed things could escalate. I believe the main reason Russia launched this action is because they new GWB would be busy in China ooglin the volleball players.

    Fool me once, shame on — shame on you. Fool me — you can’t get fooled again.

    Putin said today he was dismayed that the United States had used its military planes to transport Georgian troops home from Iraq.

    Fool me a third time?

  108. reinvestor X says:

    Clod, so you’re playing jokester today. I’m remember that and you’ll pay for this little comment.

    The fact is that the commies are resurgent and they’ve got an alliance with our main enemy Iran which makes them an enemy.

    They must be stopped and my disappointment is that we’re not being tough enough on them

    Clotpoll Says:
    August 11th, 2008 at 11:22 am
    tard (97)-

    “They have a secret alliance.”

    Tard, does that mean they all wear secret decoder rings, too?

    Here’s a not-so-secret alliance:

    your head = your butt

  109. Clotpoll says:

    BC (100)-

    I honestly don’t know. There are two factors in my area that make this an un-knowable number:

    1. Many agents have sellers who will be short the mortgage payoff- at any price- yet the owners haven’t told the agents, and the agents are too dumb or too lazy to find out.

    2. Many homes currently listed at fantasy prices are priced that way because to accept less than the insane asking would lead to a short sale. If and when these homes are bid to market, they will be short sales.

    My best guess tells me 10-15% of the current Hunterdon/Somerset inventory could be short the payoff, if valued at market.

    If I’m wrong on this, I’m probably wrong to the low side.

  110. reinvestor X says:

    Bullspit, if SO was part of Russia, why the hell wasn’t it integrated along with NO? The fact of the matter is that SO is part of Georgia and the commies have no right to assert some centuries old claim as an excuse to seize energy resources.

    This thing is about the commies flexing their damn muscles and ignoring the world community. They can’t be allowed to get away with it.
    3b Says:
    August 11th, 2008 at 11:26 am
    #94 rediaperwipe: Ah no it was not a part of Gerogia.

    The Ossetians were absorbed by the Russian Empire in the 16/1700’s. And right or wrong have been for the most part loyal to Russia as the Russians offered protection from other hostile groups in the area.

    During Stalin’s rule ( a Georgian) he split Ossetia into 2 sections, with North Ossetia remaining in Russia and South Ossetia becoming part of Georgia.

    With the collapse of the Soviet Union, the South Ossetians threw off Georgian rule, and have advocated being reunited with North Ossetia as part of Russia.

    You are just another typical uninformed dumb American.

  111. Clotpoll says:

    Tard (108)-

    “Clod, so you’re playing jokester today.”

    Tard, I’m not doing anything. Your own words are joke enough.

    All you need is a clown suit and a red rubber nose to complete the picture.

  112. kettle1 says:

    regarding georgia:

    The 1,770km (1,100 miles) Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline, which entered service only last year, pumps up to 1 million barrels of oil per day from Baku in Azerbaijan to Yumurtalik, Turkey, where it is loaded on to supertankers for delivery to Europe and the US. Around 249km of the route passes through Georgia, with parts running only 55km from South Ossetia.

    The isreali’s have been consultign on upgrading the georgian MIGs, (the russians bombed the factory over the weekend) and the US and israel have been jointly training georgian infantry and commanders for a while now.

    the question is, does this proxy battle spread or stay limited to georgia?

  113. chicagofinance says:

    Anyone perform real estate work dealing with a property containing Conservation Easements or working with a buyer that was intending on putting one in place?

  114. bi says:

    it terms of foreign policy, here is the difference bewteen having-guts and me-too candidates:

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/politico/20080809/pl_politico/12409

  115. 3b says:

    #110 redipaerwipe: Did you not read my post? I just explained it to you.

    Are you that dense?

  116. make money says:

    Is an FDIC Bailout in Our Future?

    During the S&L crisis in the early 1990s, 1,500 banks failed. So far, seven banks have failed in 2008, the largest being IndyMac. The FDIC has about $53 billion in funds to handle future bank failures. The IndyMac failure is expected to use $4 to $8 billion of those funds. Average Americans will lose $500 million in uninsured deposits in this failure. The FDIC says that they have 90 banks on their “watch list.” They do not reveal the banks on the list, so little old ladies with their life savings in local banks will be surprised when they go belly up. Based on the fact that IndyMac was not on their “watch list.” I wouldn’t put too much faith in their analysis.

    Some 8,500 banks operate in the U.S. Based on an independent analysis by Chris Whalen from Institutional Risk Analytics, 8 percent of all banks, or around 700 banks have been identified as “troubled.” This is quite a divergence from the FDIC estimate. Should you believe a governmental agency that wants the public to remain in the dark to avoid bank runs, or an independent analysis based upon balance sheet analysis? The implications of 700 institutions failing are huge.

    U.S. banks hold roughly $6.84 trillion in bank deposits. Almost $2.6 trillion of these deposits are uninsured. There is only $274 billion of the $6.84 trillion as cash on hand at banks. This means that $6.5 trillion has been loaned to consumers, businesses, developers, etc. The FDIC has $53 billion to cover $6.84 trillion of deposits. Does that give you a warm feeling?

    Based on historical trends, some experts estimate that we are only in the early innings of bank write-offs. The write-offs will at least equal the previous peaks reached in the early 1990s. If several more large banks such as Washington Mutual or Wachovia were to fail, it might wipe out the FDIC fund. If the FDIC fund is depleted, guess who will pay? Right again, another taxpayer bailout.

  117. 3b says:

    #114 bi: Guts? What difference does it make? What can the U.S. possibly do at this point? Attack Russia?

  118. GetAClueNJ says:

    #62 Clot

    You have a source for that little nugget about the Dow. I want to send that to my boss, he’ll find it interesting.

  119. kettle1 says:

    banks failures to date

    First Priority Bank, Bradenton, FL August 1, 2008 August 1, 2008
    First Heritage Bank, NA, Newport Beach, CA July 25, 2008 July 25, 2008
    First National Bank of Nevada, Reno, NV July 25, 2008 July 25, 2008
    IndyMac Bank, Pasadena, CA July 11, 2008 July 11, 2008
    First Integrity Bank, NA, Staples, MN May 30, 2008 July 25, 2008
    ANB Financial, NA, Bentonville, AR May 9, 2008 July 25, 2008
    Hume Bank, Hume, MO March 7, 2008 July 25, 2008
    Douglass National Bank, Kansas City, MO January 25, 2008

  120. NJLifer says:

    reinvestor X

    Securing a country so that the oil may flow freely? Invasion in the name of protecting it’s own citizens? Sounds like the same cards we always play. Besides, those Commies are no longer, and doing quite well at the capitalism game. You want to complain about Commies, go join an anti-China rally.

  121. GetAClueNJ says:

    #81 Gator

    I believe that the 2007 assessment was $280k, which was the seller’s OLP. After a month, he lowered his LP to $265k, and I talked him down to $252.5k a month after that price drop. The comps that I got from my realtor all appeared to be above the price I’m paying, but there were very few of them for that area recently. (Manville)

    I have no relationship to the seller, but it was an estate sale and the former owner’s son is the one selling the house.

  122. bi says:

    117#, it may take time to come up feasible solutions, but you should have to have guts to tell the fact as it is. the fact is it is russian invasion. the problem with mr. o is he has no idea but offering “Now is the time for Georgia and Russia to show restraint…” after listening to 300 foreign policy advisers.

  123. kettle1 says:

    level 3 assets:

    level 3 assets as % of capital
    bear 314%
    morgan stanley 235%
    merrill lynch 225%
    goldman 192%
    lehman 171%
    Fannie mae 161%
    Citi 125%
    prudential 119%
    Hartford 109%

    from http://tinyurl.com/5m9mue

  124. NJGator says:

    81 Get – I’m not a lawyer, but the fact that it is an estate sale, might complicate the appeal. In order to represent fair market value there must be an “arm’s-length transaction” which is “a sale in the open market between an owner willing but not obliged to sell and a buyer willing but not obliged to buy.”

    The estate did try to sell at the assessment level and had to lower the price, so that could work in your favor.

    I’d go ahead and file. You’re only out the $25 filing fee if you lose (if you handle it pro se).

  125. GetAClueNJ says:

    #124 Gator

    I figured it might be worth a shot. To get tax records on what the neighbors pay, would I have to contact Somerset county or can I get that from Manville? And I assume the appeal would also be filed with Manville.

  126. hirono says:

    Not harshing on the particulars of the Georgia /Russia situation but felt compelled to comment on the oft used line ” You won’t see anything about this in the media”

    The Georgia Russia story was on the front page of the newspapers I read today, and the lead story on the 24hr “news” channels. Are they not part of the big bad media? Also that argument cannot be used and then have a media link used to illustrate the point.

    Jeez…

  127. NJGator says:

    125 Get – You can find the assessments online at:

    http://tax1.co.monmouth.nj.us/cgi-bin/prc6.cgi?menu=index&ms_user=monm&passwd=data&district=1301&mode=11

    It’s a Monmouth County website, but it was refreshed with Someset County data last year, so your new Manville assessments are in it.

    I would actually not just look at assessments, since you feel you are valued at over market. I would ask a realtor to provide you with recent comps, and then check this database to see how the assessments of those properties compare to yours.

    In my appeal, I used sales comps that were lower than my own assessment, yet the assessments on those homes were higher than my own assessment. I did not want the town to argue that the “comps” were not applicable because they were for lesser properties. I focused on homes that were roughly the same age as mine, with equivalent or greater square footage on a similar lot size and in a similar quality neighborhhod to my own.

  128. NJGator says:

    125 Get – Also – The appeal would be filed with the Somerset Board of Taxation.

  129. jamil says:

    117 3b “What difference does it make? What can the U.S. possibly do at this point? Attack Russia?”

    There a lot of things the West can and should do, such as kicking Russia out of G8, and terminating or nationalizing Russian energy projects in Europe. For example, the Russians are now building an undersea gas pipeline (run by ex-KGB and former German leader Schroeder) to Germany. Instead, Europe should terminate the project and decide to fund competing gas pipeline through Georgia.

    I agree for the first time with former Carter Sec Adviser Brzezinski and Dick Morris who compared the current conflict to Sudetenland (1938) and Finland (1939).

    This time West must do something.

  130. jamil says:

    126 hirono: This reminds me: Where are all those leftist human shields, “anti-war” (read anti-us) groups and peace demonstrations?

  131. 3b says:

    #129 Jamil:I agree for the first time with former Carter Sec Adviser Brzezinski and Dick Morris who compared the current conflict to Sudetenland (1938) and Finland (1939)

    I do not I believe that the South Ossetians wish to be reunited with the rest of their people in a united Ossetia as part of Russia, that that is their right.

    Are not the South Ossetians entitled to self-determination? They have held 2 referendums since the early 90’s. The last one in 2006 was determined by European observers to be generally fair, although they refused to validate it as the Georgians would not recognize it.

    I do believe that the Russians should pull out of Georgia proper, but South Ossetia is a different story.

  132. thinking-jerseyan says:

    There is something relevant in a time of declining values that the majority of homeowners don’t know, and few appraisers bring up. That is the method by which each town assesses it’s property.

    There are four state-approved methods for assessing real property. In some towns, for example, the assessor simply looks at all home sites the same, as sites. In Bernards Township, for example, this has resulted in older ranches and bi-levels having land value approximating that of 6,000 square foot mansions down the street. Further, within the last two years, the town retroactively applied the NJ Wetlands law to existing homes.

    This last action impaired the value almost exclusively of those older homes that may have some slope on the site, or wetlands adjacent to the site. Therefore, the “teardown” value of the home may be nil, and yet the land is assessed within 10% of the mansion down the street. This produces fundamental inequities in the taxation of two such properties.

    It is essential that homeowners appealing their property taxes determine if a similar situation exists in their towns, and include that in their appeals. Perhaps even in class-action lawsuits against towns that use similar assessment methodology.

    That mansion down down the road paying, say $18,000 per year in taxes, while for example, your ranch on 1 acre with slope and wetlands adjacent is paying $7500? Realistically, the larger house should be paying probably $24,000 and your ranch paying $4500.

    One of those little known facts in NJ’s property-tax system.

  133. priced-out-in-2008 says:

    Does anyone have any information about MLS ID #20807242?

    It is a 3-BR, 2-BA condo in Edison, and is listed for $180k. I have been informally keeping an eye on about 30 properties in the area since April, and this is the best price I’ve seen so far for such a property. Of course, the condo dues might be through the roof . . .

  134. syncmaster says:

    #133, I don’t have MLS access so I can’t help (I am sure others will, shortly).

    But at $180k are you sure this isn’t a co-op?

  135. skep-tic says:

    re: taxes:

    here is what I don’t understand. state and local tax revenues are up massively over the past 8 yrs. spending has obviously gone up the same amount given that even a small dropoff in revenue portends a fiscal “crisis.” yet, somehow, state and local gov’ts functioned fine pre-housing boom. why can’t they simply cut spending to the level it was pre-boom on a real basis?

  136. NJGator says:

    132 Thinking – This is interesting. Our in-laws live in an active adult community in Jackson. All homesites within their community have the same land value assessments, even though some homes sit on “premium sites” which cost more to purchase, and theoretically command a market premium as well.

    I’ve noticed in our appeals experience, that even though the real error in our assessment was the land value (our community does not assess all parcels equally), the town’s settlement offer took the value off of our improvement. My assumption with this, was to not open additional avenues of appeal for our neighbors, and allowing them to argue that our assessment was reduced only because of a defect in our home, which doesn’t apply to them.

  137. make money says:

    why can’t they simply cut spending to the level it was pre-boom on a real basis?

    If we go beack to spending federally to what we spent in 1996 then we don’t need to pay income taxes and IRS can be abolished.

    Which elected official has any backbone to suggest drastic cuts and say that we need to go backwards for a decade?

    Just like everything else my friend you need ONIONS and an attitude that one is elected to do what’s best for the people and not himself.

  138. jamil says:

    135: “why can’t they simply cut spending to the level it was pre-boom on a real basis?”

    As long as certain unnamed political party and the affiliated mafia and public unions control NJ, nothing will change. The solution would be to vote the bums out of office, but this will never happen. So, enjoy ever rising taxes and crime (or vote accordingly or move out).

    Also, activist judges are making executive decisions (like telling how many millions must be spent in which school district etc). Since it is almost impossible to get rid of corrupt judges, new legislature should just terminate the underlying positions and create new judgeships and courts.

  139. kettle1 says:

    skeptic 135,

    the pols will promptly cut the most critical service to the general public in order to make them “feel the pain” and back off of demands for reduction in government.

    Then again, some town outside of charlotte just reduced taxes and gave money back to the residents as the increased income from the recent housing boom provided more income then the town needed. Imagine not spending more then you need or more then you have!

  140. Firestormik says:

    RE: Georgia.

    Their president is full of bullshit and should be shot for what he did. Do you think Russian tanks ground-leveled Tskhinvali??

    Aug 9 (Interfax) – Georgia commandos are trying
    to infiltrate Tskhinvali in small groups, city people report. The
    Georgian side continues to shell the city.
    “The shelling has not stopped in fact. We are staying in the city
    outskirts. There is constant shooting here. They say Georgian commandos
    are trying to enter the city in small groups,” a resident of Tskhinvali
    told Interfax Saturday afternoon on the phone.
    “We don’t feel yet that the city is be controlled by our troops,”
    he said.
    He said that the Georgian side is firing at the city using all
    types of arms from the nearby hills.
    Earlier the Interfax correspondent in Tskhinvali reported the
    resumption of massive shelling of the city and the headquarters of
    Russian peacekeepers.

  141. NJLifer says:

    Can’t sell it. Too rich to rent it, so Shockey will lend his property…

    “Jeremy Shockey obviously has no use for his New Jersey home, just across the Hudson River from Manhattan, now that he’s been dealt to New Orleans. And so he has loaned it to Joba Chamberlain.”

  142. jamil says:

    hmm. latest news:
    “Soviet forces capture town of Gori, move to within 35 miles of Tbilisi; Georgia rushing troops to reinforce capital”

    Oil prices are already rising and if Soviets take the oil pipeline, it would be a major disaster (the corridor is absolutely vital to US military, and western energy needs). US should draw a line: If Soviets attack Tbilisi or oil pipeline, US will defend its ally. US air force could easily wipe out the advancing russian tanks inside Georgia in the outskirts of Tbilisi.

    I see leftists are already making up conspiracy theories. Georgia started this war to help Mac. Anyway, this is a major development (and also affects presidential election).

  143. Clotpoll says:

    clue (118)-

    Navellier Financial.

  144. jamil says:

    Firestormik: Interfax is a Soviet propaganda tool. Like every other media outlet in Russia, it is 100% controlled by Putin. Independent journalists have been killed or jailed.

    The Russians started this, their agents in South O attacked Georgian troop.

  145. alice says:

    http://www.judiciary.state.nj.us/taxcourt/smallbook.pdf

    This is the Tax Court’s Small Claims Case handbook. It is specifically for real property tax appeals. Good Luck!

  146. Firestormik says:

    RE: jamil.
    Another BS from Georgia officials.

  147. 3b says:

    #135 skeptic: Well speaking for my town, the reason our taxes have increase so dramatically is due to massive school construction projects.

  148. 3b says:

    #138 jamil: I agree with your comments on activist judges, UNELECTED I might add, to which I woudl further add, where is the democracy in that?

  149. alice says:

    http://www.njactb.org/

    The county tax assessor’s website. The record search covers the entire state by county. For location just put in the street name.

  150. NJGator says:

    Alice 145 – Keep in mind that this is for State Tax Court Only. Most people have to first file with their local County Board of Taxation. You may only directly file in State Tax Court if your assessment is $750,000 or higher.

  151. skep-tic says:

    #139

    “some town outside of charlotte just reduced taxes and gave money back to the residents as the increased income from the recent housing boom provided more income then the town needed. Imagine not spending more then you need or more then you have!”

    my friend who worked in Hong Kong got a tax rebate from the Hong Kong gov’t not because he overpaid but because the gov’t spent under budget. this type of thing is possible even though many pretend it is not. something to remember when any politician says the “responsible” thing is to raise taxes

  152. ben says:

    the best way to profit from war is to NOT FIGHT IT. You can focus on building up your economy while the other countries bankrupt themselves fighting a war. That’s what China’s been doing for a long time. Throughout history, all powerful nations have crumbled because of a war. It’s not that they don’t win the war. It’s just that they spent all their money trying to do so.

  153. 3b says:

    #142 Jamil: I agree it is a major development. If you are advocatimng the U.S attack Russia, than you are insane.

    As far as leftists, and consparicy therories, well I am no leftist, nor a rightist for that matter.

    However, the Georgians were insane to attack the Russians. What exactly did they think would happen.

  154. skep-tic says:

    I have a great idea to save some tax dollars. let’s pull all of our troops from western europe. euros hate us anyway and clearly they have nothing to fear but the belligerent U.S. fascists at this point.

  155. jamil says:

    153: Russian agents have been attacking Georgian troops and civilians near the border for months. How many civilians should die before you can defend their citizens?

    They had to act. Yes, it was a trap. Russians had hundreds of tanks waiting for an excuse to “liberate” Georgia (similar excuse they used in 1939 in Finland and in 1990’s in Chechnya and Afghanistan in 1979).

    The West did not act in 1938-39 and it did not end too well. Do you think Soviets stop here?

    Next is Ukraine, then Baltic States.

    I think US should make it clear that Russian troops entering the capital of independent Georgia will be attacked (just like Kennedy made the threat to Russians). Russians must stop and leave Georgia.

  156. Victorian says:

    BTW, Russia holds $50 billion of Fannie/Freddie mortgage-backed bonds.

    The U.S can do zilch vis-a-vis China and Russia.

  157. jamil says:

    Also, I hope US airlifts every human shield to Tbilisi as soon as possible.

    Isn’t protesting against imperialist aggressor their greatest desire?

  158. 3b says:

    #155 jamil: I believe the Russians will leave Georgia, when they have accomplished their goals, right or wrong.

    I do not believe they have any intention of occupying any independent country, as it would bleed them as Afghanistan did.

    They will however assert their influence in these areas. That should come as a surprise to no one.

  159. Firestormik says:

    Who is entering Georgia? What are you talking about? Again, Georgia is full of BS

    Source: Reuters
    TBILISI, Aug 11 (Reuters) – A Georgian official said on Monday that Russian forces had captured the Georgian town of Gori, 60 kilometres from the capital Tbilisi, but a Reuters witness saw no troops in the empty town.

    “They have captured the city of Gori,” the secretary of Georgia’s security council, Kakha Lomaia told Reuters by telephone.

    A Reuters reporter in Gori said: “We are right now driving through the town and I see no trace of troops or military vehicles. It is absolutely deserted.” (Reporting by James Kilner and Margarita Antidze)

  160. bi says:

    159#, my prediction: firestormik is a commi

  161. 3b says:

    #160 bi: And the South Ossetians? Why are their democratic wishes not respected?

  162. Gwen says:

    What do folks think about the holdout b/w buyers and sellers? How much longer will buyers stick to these sky high asking prices?

  163. reinvestor X says:

    EXACTLY. It’s time to stop playing around and tell them damn commies that they have to stop and stop right the hell now before we take them to the mat. Our opportunity may arise when we bring those 2000 Georgian soldiers back from Iraq. The way the Russians are acting, they may provoke us by taking down that plane. There ought to be hell to pay now, but if they touch that damn plane, we need to wipe them right off the damn map.

    The USA is the only thing standing between them and the tryanny these commies want to impose on the west.

    jamil Says:
    August 11th, 2008 at 1:23 pm
    153: Russian agents have been attacking Georgian troops and civilians near the border for months. How many civilians should die before you can defend their citizens?

    They had to act. Yes, it was a trap. Russians had hundreds of tanks waiting for an excuse to “liberate” Georgia (similar excuse they used in 1939 in Finland and in 1990’s in Chechnya and Afghanistan in 1979).

    The West did not act in 1938-39 and it did not end too well. Do you think Soviets stop here?

    Next is Ukraine, then Baltic States.

    I think US should make it clear that Russian troops entering the capital of independent Georgia will be attacked (just like Kennedy made the threat to Russians). Russians must stop and leave Georgia.

  164. bts says:

    Sorry if this has already been posted.

    http://www.northjersey.com/realestate/Why_your_home_hasnt_sold_yet.html

    Some actual realtor quotes:

    “If you get an offer in today’s market, you’d better try to make the best of it and live with it if you can, because there isn’t another one waiting in the wings,” said Jay Bouton of Coldwell Banker in Allendale

    “If you’ve gotten two or three offers at the same number, that’s where the market is,” Kristin Gildea of Marron & Gildea in Ridgewood

  165. Firestormik says:

    Re: bi
    If you think that every single Russian is a commi (and btw I’m not from Russia) – then yes – you can continue thinking this way. There is no point to argue with you.

  166. make money says:

    Hello everyone,

    Please be advised that I’m getting beat up here. There seems to be no demand for yellow metal.

    Today I’m gonna have subway for lunch.

    enjoy the rest of the day.

    make(loose) money!

  167. make money says:

    Re 163

    You sound like a telephone tough guy. Our military is streched really thin and it’s a the weakest it has been in 100 yrs. The whole world hates US with the exception of Albania.

    Russia controlled georgia for the past 2 centuries prior to 1991. Who are we to say that they can’t controll them today.

    What if Mexico wants it’s land back. Puerto Rico? Hawaii?

    US needs to shut up and hope they’ll continue to lend to us and buy up our dollars.

  168. kettle1 says:

    I hate to bait the troll but….

    Re101,

    there would be no winner in a direct conflict between the US and russia. The losses would be devastating on both sides and whether the weapons were conventional or nuke. even the so called victory would be so badly damaged as to have lost as well.

    Besides the real future conflict is with china. China has a huge population and has a huge surplus of unwed males. unwed males with no prospects for marrying have historically left a country with only 2 choices. Go to war ( kill off the excess population and perhaps pick up some loot in the process)or face internal revolution and uprising due to the restless and dissatisfied male population.
    India is starting to have the same issue as well. it is due to cultural issues in both countries, males are favored as children.

    besides russia has WAY more leverage then the west does. russia can shut off the natural gas flow to europe . and with winter approaching there is no replacing that volume of gas before winter. russia can hold europe hostage if it wants to.

  169. cynicalgirl says:

    FWIW, Frankford Township (in Sussex County) had a revalue last year. There were so many appeals that the Tax Assessor told everyone that the newly assessed value is based on a specific date. If your property values have gone down in 6 months, it’s irrelevant.

  170. kettle1 says:

    make,

    i have neither the cojones or the $$$ to play the game you are playing with shiny yellow metal. But i think that you can/will ultimately win. The hard part is that the government/s are actively manipulating the markets at this point. The world bank is selling a huge chunk of gold (i read this the other day dont remember the link). If you can ride out the loss until the fiat roller coaster hots the wall, then you win.

    best of luck to you and this is not financial advise

  171. kettle1 says:

    There were so many appeals that the Tax Assessor told everyone that the newly assessed value is based on a specific date. If your property values have gone down in 6 months, it’s irrelevant.

    is that legit?

  172. reinvestor X says:

    Bullspit. Who are we you ask? We are the last great hope for the world; that’s who we are. We have to stand for right and what these commies are doing ain’t right.

    Moreover, they’re trying to conduct economic warfare on the west by trying to grab those damn pipelines. Their next stop is all of central asia where natural gas supplies are plentiful. This is a continuation of the great game on their part to gain control over energy supplies.

    Do you actually believe that these commies didn’t have this war plan already laid out? They did and intend to subjugate the world to their evil designs. There’s only one damn thing standing between that and freedom: The USA. We must exert our strength immediately and put them in their place.

    make money Says:
    August 11th, 2008 at 1:47 pm
    Re 163

    You sound like a telephone tough guy. Our military is streched really thin and it’s a the weakest it has been in 100 yrs. The whole world hates US with the exception of Albania.

    Russia controlled georgia for the past 2 centuries prior to 1991. Who are we to say that they can’t controll them today.

    What if Mexico wants it’s land back. Puerto Rico? Hawaii?

    US needs to shut up and hope they’ll continue to lend to us and buy up our dollars.

  173. stan says:

    #164

    BTS– that guy must be beating himself up over that offer he got in ’05. Interesting look into how someone can make a poor decision at every turn.

  174. ben says:

    “Hello everyone,

    Please be advised that I’m getting beat up here. There seems to be no demand for yellow metal.

    Today I’m gonna have subway for lunch.

    enjoy the rest of the day.

    make(loose) money!”

    Unless you are selling, I don’t see how you are getting beat up. I’m gonna buy some today.

  175. jamil says:

    167: “Our military is streched really thin and it’s a the weakest it has been in 100 yrs. ”

    ??

    Clearly, our military is now the strongest ever. No country on earth comes even close (unlike, say in 1940s or during the Cold War). The fact that we have troops in Iraq is irrelevant (besides, without Iraq war, we would have 100,000 troops in Saudi-Arabia, UAE and Kuwait). We would not use ground troops in Georgia in anycase.

    We just need to use diplomacy, backed by credible force, just like during Cuban missile crisis. “Red line” is Tbilisi. If Russians enter Tbilisi area, they will be attacked by US air force.

    Besides, even Europe is stunned and in panic.

    Georgia is an independent democracy, and crucial ally of the West (both because of energy and being a corridor between Europe and ME, used heavily by US). If Russians occupy Georgia, Ukraine, Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan are lost too.

  176. NJGator says:

    169, 171 – Yes, the assessment is the value as of a certain date – i.e. Oct 1 of the preceeding year. So for 2008 tax year, your assessment should track to the value of your home on Oct 1, 2007. However, for next year (2009), your assessment can not be greater than the fair market value of your home on Oct 1, 2008. So while many homeowners may not have had a valid appeal intiially, a whole lot of them will have one for the following tax year.

  177. reinvestor X says:

    We agree on one thing: Russia will attempt to hold Europe hostage. We CAN NOT allow for that to happen. THAT COULD BE THE TIPPING POINT TO DESTROY US ECONOMICALLY. The stakes are too high for inaction. We must take decisive action NOW.

    Russia has done it calculations and it intends to seize the moment. They must be stopped.

    kettle1 Says:
    August 11th, 2008 at 1:48 pm
    I hate to bait the troll but….

    Re101,

    there would be no winner in a direct conflict between the US and russia. The losses would be devastating on both sides and whether the weapons were conventional or nuke. even the so called victory would be so badly damaged as to have lost as well.

    Besides the real future conflict is with china. China has a huge population and has a huge surplus of unwed males. unwed males with no prospects for marrying have historically left a country with only 2 choices. Go to war ( kill off the excess population and perhaps pick up some loot in the process)or face internal revolution and uprising due to the restless and dissatisfied male population.
    India is starting to have the same issue as well. it is due to cultural issues in both countries, males are favored as children.

    besides russia has WAY more leverage then the west does. russia can shut off the natural gas flow to europe . and with winter approaching there is no replacing that volume of gas before winter. russia can hold europe hostage if it wants to.

  178. RentL0rd says:

    Has anyone heard of http://www.CDARS.com ?

    It claims to (FDIC) insure up to $50M

    I came across it today and would like to know what you guys think.

    Thanks
    R

  179. reinvestor X says:

    I just heard on the radio that “Pukin” is now threatening the US by talking about the Georgia troops we’re ferrying back from Iraq.

    Mark my damn words here—Russia does not intend to let that plane land. Like it or now, the US is in the conflict.

  180. reinvestor X says:

    now=not

  181. jamil says:

    kettle: “there would be no winner in a direct conflict between the US and russia. ”

    Yes, I agree, and nobody is proposing this. However, US must use diplomacy (secret or public), backed by credible force. Russians could not care less what sort of statement Euro-wimps are maybe issuing, but they do care if the US is ready to defend Tbilisi.

    Let them keep the two provinces (this is unfair, against UN charter and international law, but life is unfair). Anyway, we must make it clear that the rest of Georgia, and other free countries will be defended by force.

  182. 3b says:

    #175 jamil: And what about the South Ossetians democratic rights?

  183. 3b says:

    #175 Russians occupy Georgia, Ukraine, Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan are lost too.

    The Russians will not occupy these countries;Putin is not that stupid.

  184. 3b says:

    #181 jamil:Let them keep the two provinces (this is unfair, against UN charter and international law.

    Why is is unfair? It is what the majority of the residents of S. Ossetia and Abhazia wish.

  185. bts says:

    Stan –

    I have been dealing with a similar situation. Seller is on their 4th listing (now $140k less than their original), but wouldn’t even counter my offer of 7% below list. Good luck selling your empty house.

  186. 3b says:

    #185 bts: Be patient, it always pays off.

  187. jamil says:

    “By DAVID NOWAK, Associated Press Writer 38 minutes ago

    GORI, Georgia – Russian armored vehicles rolled deep into western Georgia on Monday, quickly seizing several towns and a military base and slicing open a damaging second front in Russia’s battle with Georgia. Other Russian forces captured the key central city of Gori.
    The invasions of Gori and the towns of Senaki, Zugdidi and Kurga came despite a top Russian general’s claim earlier Monday that Russia had no plans to enter Georgian territory. By taking Gori, which sits on Georgia’s only east-west highway, Russia has the potential to effectively cut the country in half.”

  188. Gwen says:

    To bts,
    Why do sellers not even counter? Do they really think their house is worth more? Or is it just a negotiating tactic/gamesmanship?

  189. bairen says:

    #188 Gwen

    I think it’s a combination of greed and stupidity.

    Plus some sellers are overleveraged and would have to do a short sale/bring money to the table. (The homeowners with negative equity who kept hitting the housing ATM during the boom would also fall into the stupidity category in my book)

  190. jmacdaddio says:

    This is playing out like Ghost Recon – a game I called the anti-shooter since running around with guns blazing will get you popped in a second even against the lousy AI from 2002. A resurgent Russia seeks to reclaim its lost empire. Ukraine and Kazakhstan have sizeable Russian minorities, so don’t be shocked if those countries “ask” for Putin’s “protection” someday soon.

  191. Stu says:

    MM/Ben:

    I bought s’more. Not the yellow stuff, but something else.

  192. Sean says:

    Jamil you are delusional. The EU imports a huge amount of oil and gas from Russia daily. If they protest too much Putin will have Gasprom shut off the pipelines.

    There is no way the US will intervene. We don’t have the forces nearby with the nearesy airbase being Incirlik in Turkey and bases much further away in Iraq. There is no way the Turkish Parliment would allow us to use any base on their soil for staging attacks on Russian troops and we are not about to toss all of the goodwill developed over the last two decades over a territory of 70k people in the Caucasus Mountains.

    This is already over. The Russians did their own version of Shock and Awe and rolled in to take over, Gerogian President Mikheil Saakashvili is now in hiding in a bunker somewhere. He will be lucky if Putin lets him live.

  193. bts says:

    Gwen – not sure. I don’t think they are in the red, but maybe think that their house is worth a lot more than it is listed for and can’t let it go for anything less. I will say that they did an absolutely beautiful job renovating the downstairs (labor of love situation), but you can’t just ignore the reality of the market. I guess if I am still in the market in a month or so, I might take another run at it (with the same or lower offer).

  194. NJGator says:

    189 – Speaking of people with no equity in their homes, buried in the McGreevey divorce judgement is the fact that Dina owes over $400k in mortgage and home equity debt on a home she purchased in 2004 for $430k and even though the McGreeveys earned over 250k/year while he was Governor and had very minimal expenses because the state was picking up their tab for home/food/transportation, etc, they managed to save absolutely nothing.

  195. Clotpoll says:

    Stu (191)-

    SKF?

    The only good thing I can say is that I’ve gotten my basis really low lately. When the worm turns, it’ll be party time.

    Until then, it is dental surgery w/no anesthesia.

  196. rhymingrealtor says:

    Clot,

    I think BC already know this, we are at 22-28% short/forclosure sales in these here parts.

    KL

  197. Victorian says:

    195 – Clot

    “Until then, it is dental surgery w/no anesthesia.”

    I think i have lost all my molars.

  198. kettle1 says:

    this is interesting,

    estimated CPI for the last 200 years

    http://tinyurl.com/622s8s

  199. gary says:

    We went to two open houses yesterday in the Montclair Heights section of Clifton. These people are still…. out of their f*cking minds. It’s like nothing has changed in the last couple of years. House #1 was an oversized split with an updated kitchen but the baths were original as was just about everything else for the last 40 years. It was neat but still needed an additional $75,000 to get it even near mint. It had a huge middle level living room area with a cathedral ceiling. A total waste of space and energy. Asking price: $679,000. I have two words: “Do Me”. My wife was under the impression that houses in this section of Clifton would be considerably less. That theory was anhilated real quick. Oh, and the taxes were $13,000/year.

    House #2 was a small split with the Garden State Parkway as the backyard. I felt like I needed to go through level 5 decontamination when I left there. I was checking my kid for lice and radioactive particles. A gas mask would’ve melted. Asking price: $469,000. I never saw my very outspoken wife so silent in all my life. I looked at the realtor on the way out the door and she just shrugged and said, “I know, I know”.

  200. jamil says:

    sean: “Jamil you are delusional. The EU imports a huge amount of oil and gas from Russia daily. If they protest too much Putin will have Gasprom shut off the pipelines.”

    I agree that they unlikely to do anything (surrender is always the way to go), but they are in full panic mode.
    EU has finally realized that the dependency of Russian energy is dangerous and cannot continue. Gas and oil pipeline through Georgia would be critical to Europe (otherwise, they are almost totally under Russian control). Poland and Baltics are already very vocal about this.

    If Russia shuts off pipelines to Europe, Russia will harm itself even more. It loses money and after that, nobody will ever again use Russia as energy source.

    Threating to act against Russia financially is something euro-wimps could do (it would make sense), but this reminds me of old joke: “How many frenchmen are needed to defend Paris? Nobody knows, it’s never been tried”

  201. NJLifer says:

    reinvestor X,

    Russia has been a capitalist country for ten about 15 years now. Would you be this upset if our best trading partner China invaded Tailand tomorrow?

  202. Stu says:

    the Fed said that over the past three months, domestic financial institutions reported having tightened their lending stands on all major loan categories. Specifically, 75% of domestic respondents tightened requirements for lending standards on prime mortgages, which is up from the previous survey’s reading of 60%.

  203. Al says:

    Ureal asking pricea are still all over NJ.

    What really surprize me is that how many houses still sell, for thouse high prices.

    I wonder how many nowdays get seller assistance in one of another form. If you get seller to pay 15% downpayment – that changes whole picture. but information like that are closelly guarded as it is illegal.

    Clinton (and arount it) area still surprizes me – are there enough jobs to mainain thouse prices sky high?? Or people in that area don’t relally need to sell, and only fishing for greater full? There is no commuting to NYC fron there.

    I was considering buying there two years ago, but gasoline prices put an end to this.

    P.S. Went to Round Valley park last week. Was amazed that 90% people there were “ethnic”. Being white family we really felt out of place on the beach. I was under impression that that area was 90%+ white.

    OK, go ahead and call me racist.

  204. NJGator says:

    Gary – Maybe we can put that on a T-Shirt and all wear it when we visit the open house son our bus tour?

  205. jamil says:

    It’s getting interesting as Pelosi has to allow a vote to continue offshore drilling ban before the elections (unless she manage to get rid of House rules – after all, this is the most ethical and transparent Congress).

    “Nearly two-thirds of Americans (64 percent) support offshore oil drilling, according to a new Rasmussen poll. And 42 percent say offshore oil drilling would have the biggest impact in terms of reducing oil prices. Only 20 percent of Americans now oppose offshore drilling.”

    Energy War in Georgia will make this even more important.

  206. bairen says:

    #195 Clot

    “Until then, it is dental surgery w/no anesthesia.”

    I never use anesthesia for fillings. The last time I hade a filling put in a cavity, the dentist was freaking out saying he’s never done a filling without giving the patient anesthesia or a pain killer. He starts drilling and he asked me how was I doing. I said “It feels pretty good.” This made him look even more frightened. So i thought I’d better explain in more detail, so I added “There’s a nice little breeze on the roof of my mouth, and the vibrations from the drill are kind of soothing, it’s actually rather pleasant” This made him look even more freaked out so I quit talking at that point.

    Alas, I don’t own any SKF though.

  207. Lincoln78 says:

    Sign o’ the times: Went to my favorite street meat place today on 50th and 6th. Price is now $6 for chicken w/ rice. Egads.

  208. Al says:

    If Russia shuts off pipelines to Europe, Russia will harm itself even more. It loses money and after that, nobody will ever again use Russia as energy source.

    HUH – So you’d rather gas/oil from where?? Outer space???

    Some people just do not understand that you need to get you oil/gas from somewhere. It is not the question of preference.

    Gas in pipelines through Georgia still comes from Siberia.

  209. Stu says:

    We’ll see if they support off shore drilling when gas is back down to $3.00.

    We’re already screwing our children financially, might as well give ’em dirty beaches too.

  210. kettle1 says:

    AL 203,

    round valley and spruce run are very popular with the ethnic groups from the urban areas of northeast NJ. On a nice summer day you will find people picnicking on the side of the road along the entrance to spruce run and to round valley, as the parks fill up and they close the gates. So the people waiting to get into the parks just pull over and picnic there.
    most locals dont go near either park on a summer weekend.

  211. jamil says:

    208 Al:
    “HUH – So you’d rather gas/oil from where?? Outer space???
    Some people just do not understand that you need to get you oil/gas from somewhere..
    Gas in pipelines through Georgia still comes from Siberia.”

    Al, sorry to break news to you, but you are incorrect.

    The oil (and soon, gas) that is delivered through Georgia, does not come from Russia. It comes from Azerbaijan (pro-western country). Kazakhstan (also pro-western) has also reserves that can be delivered through the same pipelines.

    Georgia is critical to these countries. Russia has competing pipelines.

  212. kettle1 says:

    AL Jamil,

    As AL alluded to where does europe get its gas from then? There is no idle supply of natural gas large enough to replace the volume of gas that europe gets from russia.
    Putin himself said shortly after coming into power that oil and gas were a tool of politics to be used as necessary. i guess no one believed him?

    STu,

    Its not even about the dirty beaches. By drilling for every drop of oil and gas that the US has now, there is little left for future generations. Once again we are screwing our grandchildren, just in terms of energy instead of $ this time.

  213. Tom says:

    Re: Property taxes,

    During the bubble people were screaming to get reassesments so they could help justify the high prices they were asking.

    Now all of a sudden they changed their mind.

  214. skep-tic says:

    I think what is happening is that the very best houses are getting sold near asking when they first come on the market to people who have been watching the market for a while or who are moving into the area and feel as though they need to buy now. these houses are a relative value compared to those that continue to sit (most), but they are not good investments given that prices overall clearly are still heading down due to the inventory overhang, which really has not budged. so that house that appears to be a relative value today when compared to all of the overpriced crap that is sitting will not look like a value next spring when similar houses come on the market for 10% less.

    still, transactions will never go to zero and it would not surprise me if this summer is the transaction volume trough (rougly 40% down year over year and more than 50% off peak volume).

  215. Sean says:

    re: #200 Jamil, Jamil, Jamil – Russia will not hurt itself financially if they shut off say a few million barrels a day to Europe. The prices will only skyrockt to $300 a barrel perhaps overnight. So how is it if they shut capacity by 50% and the prices double are they hurting themselves?

    Putin has the EU and the US by the knuts and he knows it, did you see his finger waving at GW during the olympics openig ceremonies?

  216. Al says:

    Another “Crazy” thought to elaborate on gas/oil resserves

    The last county with vast gasoline reserves will be a king of the world. Huge amounts of debt can be easilly discarded in default.

    So just may be USA have a very smart policy which is keep it’s own resources and use up other countries resources first, in exchange for worthless debt.

    but again I have my tinfoil hat on, and it is my other conspiracy theory.

    http://original.britannica.com/eb/article-9115948/Table-3-The-Recoverable-Natural-Gas-Resources-of-the-World
    production resources endowment

    United States 22.4 4.6 11.2 38.2
    Canada 2.6 2.7 10.3 15.6
    Mexico 0.8 2.0 4.4 7.2
    South America 1.8 5.5 5.9 13.2
    Western Europe 4.1 5.4 5.8 15.3
    Russia and Ukraine 8.6 47.0 45.0 100.6
    Transcaucasia and Central Asia 2.9 10.7 6.6 20.2
    Middle East 2.1 44.3 31.5 77.9
    Africa (including North Africa) 1.1 9.6 12.4 23.1
    China 0.5 1.7 7.3 9.5
    Oceania and Asia (excluding China) 2.0 8.3 13.0 23.3
    Total world 48.9 141.8 153.4 344.1

    *In trillion cubic metres; figures adapted from Oil & Gas Journal and U.S. Geological
    Survey.

  217. 3b says:

    #213 Tom: Ironic isn’t it. Also in my town some of the biggest proponents of massive school spending, are now loudly complaining about taxes being out of control.

    If you kept voting yes to new spending projects, what did you thinks was going to happen?

  218. chicagofinance says:

    Clotpoll Says:
    August 11th, 2008 at 2:30 pm
    Stu (191)-
    SKF?
    The only good thing I can say is that I’ve gotten my basis really low lately. When the worm turns, it’ll be party time.
    Until then, it is dental surgery w/no anesthesia.

    #1 WTF are you doing?
    #2 There is going to be another bump in the road. However, the question is whether it is as dramatic as you need it to be…..

  219. 3b says:

    #209 We’ll see if they support off shore drilling when gas is back down to $3.00.

    That is assuming we get back to $3.00 gas.

  220. chicagofinance says:

    Lincoln78 Says:
    August 11th, 2008 at 2:51 pm
    Sign o’ the times: Went to my favorite street meat place today on 50th and 6th. Price is now $6 for chicken w/ rice. Egads.

    I went to Dunkin’ Donuts yesterday…..$0.99 for a little pill with a hole called Old Fashioned?

  221. Al says:

    read up about

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Energy_policy_of_Kazakhstan

    they have pipelines to go to China and….. RUSSIA…. Would be hard to build a pipeline around russia. Check you maps.

  222. jamil says:

    kettle: Actually, there are idle natural gas reserves in Central Asia. Russia is now trying to prevent new undersea pipeline (“The Trans-Caspian Gas Pipeline”) from Central Asia to Azerbaijan and Georgia.
    Europe can get gas from Norway and through Georgia (from Azerbaijan and soon also from Kazakhstan/Turkmenistan).

    Russia is now building a gas pipeline to Germany – Europe should stop it now (Poland and Baltics are already strongly opposing it).

    Nuclear power is already making a comeback in Europe (even in Germany), so it is possible to make Europe less dependent of Russian gas. It may be difficult to get totally rid of Russian energy, but Europe is finally realizing that it must change its energy policy. I hope they make the necessary decisions and terminate the new Russian/KGB pipeline.

  223. NJGator says:

    213 – Anyone who wants their assessment increased in order to sell their house should pay a double stupid tax! High assessments (especially in high tax towns) drive sales prices down. Has anyone ever seen an MLS listing boasting “High Taxes”?

  224. Tom says:

    skep-tic,

    I think you’re on to something. I’ve been looking at the tiered Case-Shiller NY metro data since it came out. The lower and mid priced homes were more volatile than the higher priced homes. People still don’t know were they’re house prices are going and from other things I’ve seen, the people who really need to sell their homes now can’t really afford to sell their homes for less than what they paid for.

    I think others that have owned their homes for a while are now just realizing that the bubble is bursting and want to try and cash in before it’s too late.

    The buyers that were looking during the bubble and now see the same houses at big savings are thinking it’s a good time to buy. Even their agents tell them it is and they better jump in before rates rise and they won’t be able to afford a house and will have to live in a cardboard box and eat shoes.

  225. Tom says:

    3b, the whole job market and salaries are a mess because of the bubble. So many local economies felt the trickle down effects as banks hired more and paid higher salaries. It’s all going to have to come crashing down.

    NJGator,

    They already paid two stupid taxes. The first when they bought their home, the second when they sell it ;)

  226. Tom says:

    grim,

    Not sure if you got the email. The quick fix to the firefox rendering problem is to change the template bottom by adding the line in bold:

    </div>
    <br clear="all" />
    </div>
    </body>
    </html>

    You can do it in CSS using an :after but I didn’t look at it the css.

  227. jamil says:

    Al 221: “they have pipelines to go to China and….. RUSSIA…. Would be hard to build a pipeline around russia. Check you maps.”

    You should check your maps.
    Main source of oil and gas through Georgia is Azerbaijan (apparently also Turkmenistan or at least soon will be) and also Kazakhstan is planning this, if not already doing it. Transportation to Azerbaijan is done by tankers or proposed undersea pipeline to Azerbaijan (which is next to Georgia).

    This is major reason for Russia to control Georgia.

    This links shows several pipelines in the area
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trans-Caspian_Gas_Pipeline

    “The Trans-Caspian Gas Pipeline (Turkmen: Transhazar turbaly geçiriji) is a proposed submarine pipeline between Türkmenbaşy in Turkmenistan, and Baku in Azerbaijan. By some proposals it will also include connection between Tengiz Field in Kazakhstan, and Türkmenbaşy. The aim of the Trans-Caspian Gas Pipeline project is the transportation of natural gas from Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan to central Europe, circumventing both Russia and Iran.

  228. Nom Deplume says:

    [116] Make

    While I don’t often take issue with conjecture, you noted that FDIC did not have Indy on its watch list. This isn’t indicative of failure on the part of FDIC—IMHO, Schumer had much to do with Indy’s downfall, and had he kept is big NY yap shut, it would not have folded.

    Also, it is not really fair or correct to compare 1990 with the present. The industry and the regulatory structure are very different, and a good portion of the problem can be laid at the feet of too many small institutions, lack of oversight in 1990 for outright crimes and other unsafe practices, state regulators, and the former FHLBB and FSLIC, both of which are gone. In the case of state banks without FDIC or FSLIC insurance, the states had mucked things up. This led to a crisis of confidence in banks that I have not seen in the current banking crisis.

    Not that I wish to take too much issue with your analysis—it is thoughtful, but I think you have misprehended the landscape a bit.

  229. jamil says:

    “Bush to make statement on Georgia-Russia Crisis at 5:15pm.”

    Hopefully, it is kennedyesque (JFK, not fat drunk killer) ultimatum.

  230. Clotpoll says:

    chi (218)-

    1. I’m betting on a partial collapse of the US financial system. Also, a further collapse of RE (via SRS).

    2. I don’t need too dramatic a bump. Am averaged in real low. I can also wait a long time for the bet to come in.

    I also thought SKF would consolidate @ $200.

    So…all disclaimers.

  231. kettle1 says:

    lets put europes predicament in perspective.

    Europe as a region imports approx 45% of its natural gas from russia. as of 2007 that 45% = 10 trillion cubic feet of natural gas/yr which is the approximately the ENTIRE annual production of natural gas in the middle east.

    Europe would have to cease all exports to make up the difference if russia were to shut off natural gas to europe. such an event would wreak havoc in energy markets and prices would go through the roof.

  232. Clotpoll says:

    jamil (229)-

    Ultimatums to tyrants who are holding all the cards, holding our onions in the palms of their hands (FRE, FNM) and are a little bit crazy? Hey, sounds like a plan to me!

    You play cards? Let’s play sometime.

  233. skep-tic says:

    Tom– my sense is that the typical buyer of a lower priced home is more likely to be a first time buyer, with a low or no downpayment, more likely to use an unconventional mortgage, more likely to be a subprime borrower, etc. So in a sense, the lower priced homes are more volatile because buyers were paying with less of their own money and thus were more inclined to bid prices up. I believe there was also a greater sense of “buy now or be priced out forever” among this demographic than among wealthier/older buyers who may have seen a down real estate cycle before and been slightly more inclined to wait the bubble out. However, despite the possibility that there may have been a greater concentration of problematic/irrational buyers in the lower tier, it seems obvious that the effect of this must ripple upward to a degree due to the fact that most buyers of expensive homes are not 1st timers. Since many of the recent 1st timers are likely to be underwater for several years, they will not be trading up, thus creating downward pressure on the upper market in the future.

  234. kettle1 says:

    NOM,

    the Texas ratio on indymac before schumers letter was at about 140%. which means that it was probably going to fail anyway. Schumer may have sped up the process, but i think it would have happened regardless.

    article discussing texas ratio
    http://seekingalpha.com/article/79320-the-texas-ratio-and-firstfed-financial

  235. jamil says:

    kettle: Yes, immediately shutting down all imports from Russia would be difficult for Europe, but they can replace some Russian energy/gas by using Georgian pipelines, and building nuclear energy (even Germany and Sweden are now reversing their nuclear stance and some countries are already building it). We are talking about long-term strategy. If Russia controls Georgia, Europe is totally controlled by Russia. Therefore, independency of Georgia is absolutely critical to Europe.

    Anyway, the most concrete plan would be to terminate the new undersea gas pipeline from Russia to Germany, which is under construction (and exploration, in some places in Baltic Sea).

  236. Clotpoll says:

    vodka (234)-

    ‘In valuing FirstFed Financial by the “Texas Ratio,” we see that currently 82% of its shareholders equity has been impaired and will likely be lost. However, if we use any type of “California Ratio” that limits the value on the asset side provided by the real estate owned portfolio as well as that of the impaired loans we can see that shareholder equity at FirstFed Financial has been eliminated, giving the stock price a value of zero.’

    I am going to tattoo the above to the inside of my eyelids. Great (and scary) article!

  237. jamil says:

    clot “Ultimatums to tyrants who are holding all the cards, ”

    The West has decent cards. Europe can threaten to terminate the new gas pipeline from Russia, Russia can be kicked out of G8, not allowed to join WTO and the US can make a statement that Russian forces entering or bombing Tbilisi or the pipeline will be destroyed by the US air force.

  238. bairen says:

    #237 jamil,

    Where would those US air force planes take off from? Looking back at Afghanistan and Iraq, or when the US bombed Libya (Do oyu remember France refused to give permission for the planes to fly across France so they had to make a huge detour?)the US would have to get permission form whatever countries the planes were based in or flying over to go on bombing missions.

  239. 3b says:

    #237 jamil: What about the democratic rights of the South Ossertians?

  240. Clotpoll says:

    jamil (237)-

    Oh, yeah. That’s all good stuff. Hey, why don’t we just nuke Moscow and get it over with?

    You should go apply for a job @ the State Dept right away…

    [sarcasm off]

  241. Tom says:

    skep-tic,

    I generally agree. I linked to that blog entry to show the chart.

    The content of the entry is different than what I was saying in reply to you. I think it’s a smaller number that bought houses thinking they were doing the right thing buying a “reasonably” priced home. It’s just that I’ve been seeing a lot of people here and elsewhere talking about how they didn’t buy more house than they could afford and how it was the right thing to do.

  242. reinvestor X says:

    What about the rights of the Southern US? They wanted to secede as well, but weren’t allowed.

    The South Ossertians are part of Georgia period and if they want to move to Russia, fine. They just need their land behind.

    3b Says:
    August 11th, 2008 at 4:04 pm
    #237 jamil: What about the democratic rights of the South Ossertians?

  243. bi says:

    3 months ago, i was predicting on this board that the ww iii was going to start as long as oil traded around $120 level. unfortunately, it seems going to happen soon”

    “TBILISI, Georgia — President Mikhail Saakashvili says Russia’s troops have effectively cut his country in half by seizing a strategic city that straddles the country’s main east-west highway.”

    “The White House announced that President Bush — enroute back from attending the Olympics in Beijing — will make a statement on the Georgia-Russia crisis at 5:15 p.m. EDT

  244. reinvestor X says:

    I said: They just need their land behind.

    I meant: They just need to leave their land behind.

  245. 3b says:

    #242 The South Ossertians are part of Georgia period and if they want to move to Russia, fine. They just need their land behind.

    The South Ossetians are part of Georgia because of Josef Stalin. Are you an admirer of Stalin now?

  246. kettle1 says:

    bairen,

    where are the Rods From heaven when you need them?!?!?!?

    HOW DO THE RODS WORK? The system would likely be comprised of tandem satellites, one serving as a communications platform, the other carrying an indeterminate number of tungsten rods, each up to 20 feet in length and 1 foot in diameter. These rods, which could be dropped on a target with as little as 15 minutes notice, would enter the Earth’s atmosphere at a speed of 36,000 feet per second–about as fast as a meteor. Upon impact, the rod would be capable of producing all the effects of an earth-penetrating nuclear weapon, without any of the radioactive fallout. This type of weapon relies on kinetic energy, rather than high-explosives, to generate destructive force (as do smart spears, another weapon system which would rely on tungsten rods, though not space-based).
    from global security

    Jamil,

    even a restriction in gas supply could cause a domestic emergency in europe if it happens during the home heating season, as there is no slack demand to be had at a moments notice.

  247. Jamey says:

    90: That’s what made it “great.”

  248. Clotpoll says:

    3b (245)-

    Tard. Stalin. Perfect together.

  249. V.N. says:

    Reinvestor X,
    I am now convinced that you are actually the creation of the imagination left-wing under-employed twenty something who, who is feebly attempting to caricature a right-wing idiot. You are not 3-dimensional. Nobody can forever post on subjects without showing the slightest bit of genuine insight about them, and enjoy being the butt of jokes, etc. Thus I believe you are someone’s imaginary enemy, a straw man with a masochistic streak. Please disappear.

  250. Rich In NNJ says:

    Rochelle Park Comp Killer!

    SOLD: 250 HOWARD AVE $349,585 5/31/2005

    MLS#: 2813680
    Orig List: $389,900 4/4/2008
    SOLD: $325,000 8/10/2008

  251. bairen says:

    #246 kettle1,

    I never heard of that. Maybe we could drop some on the abandoned mcmansion tracts and turn them back into farmland.

  252. Rich In NNJ says:

    Leonia FUTURE Comp Killer!

    SODL: 311 HAROLD AVE $402,500 10/15/2004

    MLS#: 2834678
    Orig List: $529,000 1/4/2008
    Last List: $398,000 8/10/2008

  253. 3b says:

    #248 clot: Good one!!

  254. Sybarite101 X says:

    233

    To an extent, you’re right that the low-end is volatile due to risky loans being taken out to finance a home purchase.

    But don’t underestimate the effect of mid- to upper-end homeowners who took out HELOC for renovations, fancy toys, investment properties, etc… that are now also in trouble. The should also exert an additional downward pressure.

  255. Rich In NNJ says:

    Edgewater FUTURE Comp Killer!

    SOLD: 92 BIRCHWOOD DR $319,000 5/5/2005

    MLS#: 2813399
    Orig List: $314,500 4/3/2008
    Last List: $267,900 8/11/2008

  256. jamil says:

    240 clot: “Oh, yeah. That’s all good stuff. Hey, why don’t we just nuke Moscow and get it over with?”

    So you think there are only two alternatives: We either nuke Moscow or ignore the whole mess?

    There are plenty of things we can and should do, when an independent country (which happens to be true ally of the US) has been attacked militarily.

  257. Rich In NNJ says:

    Ridgefield Park FUTURE Comp Killer

    SOLD: 116 HOBART ST $362,000 5/5/2005

    MLS#: 2817141
    Orig List: $439,000 3/7/2006
    Last List: $359,000 8/11/2008

  258. Rich In NNJ says:

    Teaneck FUTURE Comp Killer!

    SOLD: 728 HARTWELL ST $385,000 1/4/2005

    MLS#: 2817282
    Orig List: $439,000 4/28/2008
    Last List: $369,000 8/11/2008

  259. 3b says:

    #257 Rich: In River Edge njmls 2823437 was just reduced to 359K from 399K, listed as pre-foreclosure, must be approved by bank.

    Could you provide me a sales history and address on this? Thanks as always.

  260. 3b says:

    #256 Jamil: What about the Georgians attack on South Ossetia this past Thursday? Should the Russians have just stood idly by?

  261. Rich In NNJ says:

    3B,

    I’ll look it up.

    In the mean time, do you recall this one,
    2834649?

    SOLD: 437 LAFAYETTE AVE $500,000 5/28/2008

    “Completely renovated” and now listed for $509,000? Where’s the profit?

  262. BC Bob says:

    “Aug. 11 (Bloomberg) — The Federal Reserve said more banks made it harder to borrow money as defaults and delinquencies on home loans soared and the economy faltered.”

    “Most “domestic institutions reported having tightened their lending standards and terms on all major loan categories over the previous three months,” the Fed said today in its quarterly Senior Loan Officer Survey.”

    “Funds became scarcer for home purchases, credit card loans became tougher to get and even banks’ best customers were subject to stricter scrutiny. Tighter credit may delay any recovery in economic growth, which economists forecast will slow well into next year.”

    “The credit crunch is intensifying,” said James O’Sullivan, a senior economist at UBS Securities LLC in Stamford, Connecticut. “It reinforces the view that the economy will be weak in the next several months and there will be renewed pressure on the Fed to start easing again.”

    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=aLiSra_oE8ps&refer=home

  263. Rich In NNJ says:

    3B (259),

    SOLD: 223 MADISON AVE $430,000 5/20/2006

    MLS#: 2823437
    Orig List: $499,000 6/9/2008
    Last List: $359,000 8/10/2008

  264. 3b says:

    I just saw that one now, was going to ask you about it. Profit? No profit, desperate owner with real estate license? What are the taxes on this? Thanks.

  265. Rich In NNJ says:

    PS The tax records show the mortgage only being $63,750…

  266. Rich In NNJ says:

    3B (264),

    Whoa! $14,216.88

  267. 3b says:

    #263 Rich: Thanks a lot. The taxes on this please? Oh and you can add it to your wonderful comp/future comp killer posts.

  268. chicagofinance says:

    Clotpoll Says:
    August 11th, 2008 at 3:40 pm
    chi (218)-
    I also thought SKF would consolidate @ $200.

    clot: Paint me a prude, but does common sense dictate that TA performed on any instrument, which price is derived by the action of a set of other instruments, inevitably produces a bastardized result which is meaningless?

    Disclaimer: most of my scruples are located north of my urethral meatus…..other may argue they are located in my posterior….

  269. Tom says:

    Sybarite,

    The refinancing and HELOC’s weren’t all people cashing out equity to live large, a good portion seems to be from brokers’ loan flipping. Also people that were facing foreclosure were refinancing to try and work things out but it seemed to make things worse.

  270. 3b says:

    #266 Rich WHOA!!! Is right 14k taxes in River Edge? Absolutley insane. The taxes on this one will kill it.

    It is a shame, the renovation looks to be nicely done.

  271. jamil says:

    “#256 Jamil: What about the Georgians attack on South Ossetia this past Thursday? Should the Russians have just stood idly by?”

    Uhh. What this has to do with Russians?
    First, South Ossetia is part of Georgia. And yes, according to the UN charter and international law (see also precedence in US in 1861), Georgia can use military force inside their own country.

    Second, Russians and their local agents have been attacking Georgian civilians and troops for months. Russians started this and they had hundred of tanks ready to roll into Georgia. Georgians had to defend their civilians (outside South Ossetia).

    Clearly, this was a Russian trap.

    btw, where the heck are “anti-war” demonstrations and human shields? We should airlift them to Tbilisi.

  272. Rich In NNJ says:

    3B (267),

    $7,772.22

  273. chicagofinance says:

    After today’s debacle, the Mets called-up Heywood Jablowme from AAA-New Orleans……

  274. BklynHawk says:

    OT-

    Is this John???

    http://takeareport.com/

  275. 3b says:

    #272 Thanks Rich

  276. 3b says:

    #271 Jamil: South Ossetia is part of Georgia, because of Stalin, nothing more. They have voted in 2 referendums to reuntie with the rest of Ossetia under Russian rule.

    But of course just ignore all that.

  277. Rich In NNJ says:

    3B (270),

    The odd thing about that listing is this bit of information within the tax records:

    Deed $250,000 5/9/2008

    It doesn’t jive with the MLS info:
    ACT 437 LAFAYETTE AVE $539,000 7/30/2007
    ACT* 437 LAFAYETTE AVE $539,000 10/3/2007
    U/C 437 LAFAYETTE AVE $539,000 10/11/2007
    SLD 437 LAFAYETTE AVE $500,000 5/28/2008

    It’s not so much the dates (I’ve seen them be different by as much as a month) as it is the reported sales price.

  278. Rich In NNJ says:

    For what it’s worth, I usually do skip John’s comments unless someone I don’t skip replies with a comment that makes me scroll back and read what he posted.

    He takes a vacation (from here as well) and what do I find myself doing?
    Skipping comments with the words Russia, Georgia or Ossetia.
    Not that I don’t care, it’s just not why I’m here. Off topic comments and joking around is one thing but a whole days worth of opinions… nah, I’ll come back later.

  279. make money says:

    Aircraft cuts off Saakashvili news call Published: Aug. 11, 2008 at 3:41 PM

    TBILISI, Georgia, Aug. 11 (UPI) — Georgia’s president aborted a teleconference with reporters Monday, saying Russian warplanes were flying over the presidential palace in Tbilisi.

    After telling reporters Georgia was in the process of being invaded, Mikheil Saakashvili said, “We have to go to the shelter because there are Russian planes flying over the presidential palace here, sorry,” CNN reported.

    Several minutes later, an operator said told reporters still on the call, “Russian planes are bombing near the president’s location” and the conference call would be rescheduled.

    “We are in the process of invasion, occupation and annihilation of an independent, democratic country,” Saakashvili said during the shortened news conference Monday. “The goal of this operation is regime change in Georgia.”

    Once outside the palace, the president was rushed away under heavy security, CNN reported.

    Russia escalated the fighting after Georgia offered a cease-fire to South Ossetia and said withdrew troops from the republic that has had ties to Russia historically. The Russian military has run operations against the Georgian capital of Tbilisi and the town of Gori.

  280. make money says:

    Georgia president is on the run? See above.

  281. Frank says:

    Clotpoll,
    How is your SKF investment going? Ooooppss

  282. Frank says:

    “Aircraft cuts off Saakashvili news call”

    How’s this related to NJ RE market?

  283. reinvestor X says:

    I don’t know how many damn times some jerk here has accused me of not being real. I’m as real as at heart attack. There’s not ghost sitting here typing at my damn computer.

    Speaking of a lack of dimensions, how many times have you droned on and on about real estate and the economy collasping?

    As to the jokes, I don’t give a shlt. There’s all sorts of jokesters here that have absolutely nothing better to do with their damn time.

    V.N. Says:
    August 11th, 2008 at 4:17 pm
    Reinvestor X,
    I am now convinced that you are actually the creation of the imagination left-wing under-employed twenty something who, who is feebly attempting to caricature a right-wing idiot. You are not 3-dimensional. Nobody can forever post on subjects without showing the slightest bit of genuine insight about them, and enjoy being the butt of jokes, etc. Thus I believe you are someone’s imaginary enemy, a straw man with a masochistic streak. Please disappear.

  284. make money says:

    frank,

    SKF = my gold investment.

    In the words of someone I know, It seems like me a clot could be THE Bagholders here!

    I certainly hope not.

  285. still_looking says:

    Reinvester 404, ie, clueless.

  286. PeaceNow says:

    RE: tax appeals.

    You cannot use an assessment comparison for the appeal process. You can only compare your assessment to actual sales. In my town, there’s a book with photos and sales prices in the assessor’s office.

  287. make money says:

    Frank,

    What do yo think will happen to NJ RE Prices if we go to war with russia?

  288. reinvestor X says:

    This is bullshlt. These damn commies are nothing but brutish thugs.

    It’s time for the USA to stop this shlt right now.

    make money Says:
    August 11th, 2008 at 5:09 pm
    Aircraft cuts off Saakashvili news call Published: Aug. 11, 2008 at 3:41 PM

    TBILISI, Georgia, Aug. 11 (UPI) — Georgia’s president aborted a teleconference with reporters Monday, saying Russian warplanes were flying over the presidential palace in Tbilisi.

    After telling reporters Georgia was in the process of being invaded, Mikheil Saakashvili said, “We have to go to the shelter because there are Russian planes flying over the presidential palace here, sorry,” CNN reported.

    Several minutes later, an operator said told reporters still on the call, “Russian planes are bombing near the president’s location” and the conference call would be rescheduled.

    “We are in the process of invasion, occupation and annihilation of an independent, democratic country,” Saakashvili said during the shortened news conference Monday. “The goal of this operation is regime change in Georgia.”

    Once outside the palace, the president was rushed away under heavy security, CNN reported.

    Russia escalated the fighting after Georgia offered a cease-fire to South Ossetia and said withdrew troops from the republic that has had ties to Russia historically. The Russian military has run operations against the Georgian capital of Tbilisi and the town of Gori.

  289. reinvestor X says:

    Excuse me. Who the hell let you out? Aren’t you supposed to be butchering some unfortunate soul in the emergency room?

    I pity the person who has to deal with you as their physician.

    still_looking Says:
    August 11th, 2008 at 5:13 pm
    Reinvester 404, ie, clueless.

  290. Mitchell says:

    I live 25 mins outside Charlotte. I am up about 2% for the year. Up $73,000 in equity since 2005 thats at a sell in under a month price too not an overinflated my house value price like some others in the neighborhood are doing. Hoping to grab a 6,000 sq ft foreclosure home soon if all goes well.

    Charlotte is down .2% from what I hear. I guess 0.2% if you want to classify it as a double digit loss. LOL.

    Charlotte is a great place to live. Even if I lost 100% of my house value I wouldn’t care. Living here is worth it alone.

  291. reinvestor X says:

    The Russians are suspected of preparing to bomb the Tblisi airport. They’ve cut the country in half.

  292. Clotpoll says:

    tard (290)-

    Were you to ever enter sl’s ER, I’d hope they’d allow a temporary suspension of the Hippocratic Oath in your case.

  293. Clotpoll says:

    Mitchell (291)-

    Say hi to to the spandex coffee girls for me.

  294. skep-tic says:

    not saying that Charlotte isn’t a nice place to live, but I think you are dreaming if you think the Charlotte real estate market is not going to be affected by all of the dislocation in the credit markets generally. massive amount of new construction with the main reason for moving to Charlotte now sidelined (i.e., a job with Wachovia or BofA)

  295. Clotpoll says:

    tard (290)-

    Perhaps you can make sure your driver’s license indicates “donor”.

    Cause after sl’s whacked you in her ER, they should remove your brain, cut it into tissue-thin slices and study every single one of them until they figure out what the hell was wrong with you.

  296. Clotpoll says:

    skep (295)-

    It’s different there. ;)

  297. Clotpoll says:

    (295)-

    I thought the primary reason most people move to NC from NJ is to avoid creditors.

  298. All Hype says:

    reinvestor X:

    Let us know when you want to go to Goergia to show them commies a thing or two. I will chip in 50 bucks for your one-way plane ticket.

  299. alia says:

    sorry, can’t stop to read everything, but:

    am in beautiful but really cold and wet england, midway through a 3 week vacation to see the in-laws and give them important grandchild spoiling time.

    relevant things: news (and thinking public consciousness) is full of the news(?) that Northern Rock was giving out 120% mortgages(!)

    Friend who is a quant at Deutsche Bank says that while they avoided the subprime stuff, they’re still losing all the money they made in other areas due to the general blood letting. Also recommends the book _The Black Swan_ where the author says economics is “a narrative discipline” which was the coolest phrase I heard all day. (Impressive, since I was at a social gathering of 6 adults, 4 with PhDs from Cambridge. The almost 3 year old child of two of the PhDs could probably talk rings around me on the subject of bosons. Did, however, lead to the interesting suggestion that The Grand Old Duke of York was an excellent re-telling of the schroedinger’s cat experiment. When they were only halfway up… they were in an indeterminate state… Thank god it was not the 3 yr old, merely the 3 yr old’s mummy who noticed that, or i’d have to hand in my “smart person” mwmbership card…)

    Friend who just bought a house last August says “we bought at the peak, but that’s ok because we’re here for the long haul”… on the other hand, he bought cash. (Darn that inherited wealth. His mother has “estates” in Scotland.) so not a statement i felt the need to quibble with.

    and for kettle: the allotment and kitchen gardeners in the UK seem to have accepted peak oil with a vengeance– the perfectly mainstream media that caters to them consistantly push organic and sustainability as not just a fuzzy feeling thing but a necessary thing as we lose access to petroleum-based fertilizers, and as the cost of oil (and the turning of farmland into fuelland) puts many out of season foods out of the range of the average purse. (oh, and they are also talking about being able to grow plants outside that haven’t ever survived outside of a greenhouse before, thanks to climate change. there seems to be an acceptance that climate change is here to stay, with wilder weather, and the powers that be will do absolutely nothing to stop it so how best do we prepare for it now?)

    my 4 yr old said to his Nan, “I like it here. There are so many trees.” (can you feel the wrenching guilt of the urban parent? i think you can…)

  300. Jamey says:

    Georgia/Russia: Wow, I thought Condi Rice was supposed to be some kind of Russia expert or something.

    It’s like these people have the reverse Midas touch.

    Again, for anyone who pulled the lever for Bush, thanks a lot.

  301. njpatient says:

    Hello everybody!

    How’s the jamil/bi/reinvestor foreign policy clown show going?

    Have they all volunteered for military service yet?

  302. Jamey says:

    253:

    Hey, my fair burg is in the news!!!

    ps: I say we make “SODL” the next “PWNED!”

  303. skep-tic says:

    I actually contemplated moving to Charlotte at one point so I am not overly down on the place. I went on a job interview there and spent the following day driving around the surrounding neighborhoods. What attracted me to it (as I’m sure is the case with most people from the Northeast) was the fact that I could get a brand new McMansion within 20 minutes of work and the weather was slightly better overall (summer is worse). It is kind of a cheesy town, but I figured it was like Atlanta maybe 15 years prior and I thought it would get better with time. This probably will still happen, but maybe not if Wachovia ceases to exist. Then it will be another small city the destiny of which is tied to one big company, rather than the number 2 banking center in the U.S., which is what it was beginning to look like until recently. Right now, I think it is not a smart move to go down there, despite the fact that you still come out way ahead cost of living wise. Your job security down there is nonexistant, and it is much harder to come back to NYC than to leave.

  304. Jamey says:

    300:

    The Black Swan is the Gertrude-Stein’s-Oakland of books: There IS no ‘there’ there.

  305. njpatient says:

    300 alia
    Another Brit in the hereabouts?
    Daddy Patient spent a number of years at Cambridge getting the MA in physics (which was useful in those days)

    Where is Lisoosh?

  306. njpatient says:

    295 skep

    Yeah
    With bells on.

  307. njpatient says:

    291 Mitchell

    “I live 25 mins outside Charlotte. I am up about 2% for the year. Up $73,000 in equity since 2005”

    You sold your house?!?!?

  308. njpatient says:

    289 reinvestor

    “It’s time for the USA to stop this shlt right now.”

    Yeah. Unfortunately, bleeding f+cking moronslike you thought it wa a good idea to send our rneitre military to Iraq instead, so now we’re frucked, unless some brave souls like you volunteer to invade Russia. I have the utmost faith that your nerve won’t fail you.

  309. njpatient says:

    284 Tard
    “There’s all sorts of jokesters here that have absolutely nothing better to do with their damn time”

    And yet your wet a$$ keeps showing up!!

  310. njpatient says:

    279 Rich

    If it makes you feel at all better, I have never skipped one of your posts. They’re why I show up.

  311. Mitchell says:

    #308 Thats the markup if we are able to get the foreclosure and need a quick sell.

  312. njpatient says:

    305 Jamey
    Ouch!
    Any thoughts on Joyce?

  313. njpatient says:

    304 skep
    Agreed
    Again

  314. alia says:

    Alia’s husband is British, i’m just a wannabe. ;) (You can keep the marmite though.)

    Two physics PhDs, a religion and a maths in one room. They all graduated from the Bachelor’s program um… ten to 15 years agoish… not to guess at your age, but you might have at least had the same lecturers?

  315. njpatient says:

    I give you the definition of irony:

    282. Frank Says: August 11th, 2008 at 5:10 pm Clotpoll,How is your SKF investment going? Ooooppss

    283. Frank Says: August 11th, 2008 at 5:12 pm “Aircraft cuts off Saakashvili news call”How’s this related to NJ RE market?

  316. grim says:

    Hat tip to Tom for fixing the HTML issues that prevented the theme from being displayed properly in FireFox!

    Woo!

  317. Clotpoll says:

    (316)-

    More like the definition of dissociative personality disorder.

  318. Tom says:

    Rich,

    I’ve been assuming for a lot of places where the sale is for around half of what the place is typically worth, there’s usually a divorce involved.

  319. Tom says:

    “Hat tip to Tom for fixing the HTML issues that prevented the theme from being displayed properly in FireFox!”

    :) You know for the longest time I just thought that’s the way the site was supposed to look till I accidentally opened it up in IE the other day.

  320. skep-tic says:

    apologies if already discussed (from Boston Globe real estate blog):

    **********
    Zillow’s 2d Quarter Homeowner Survey:

    62% of US homeowners think their home’s value has increased or remained the same in the past year. (By Zillow’s calculations, 77% of US homes have lost value.)

    75% expect their home value will increase or stay the same over the next six months [!!!].

    42% expect the value of homes in their local market to decline.

    In the Northeast, 39% of homeowners believe their home’s value has increased in the past year [!!!], with 38% saying their home lost value. But Zillow’s data show 20% of homes in the region gained value and 74% lost value.

    48% of respondents said homeowners facing foreclosure because they took out adjustable-rate mortgages shouldn’t receive government assistance, while 28% supported government help, and 24% weren’t sure how they felt.
    ****************

    it is amazing how delusional sellers still are, by and large

  321. potted palms says:

    From Slate:

    A few counterquestions for those who rise to compare every nasty leader to Hitler and every act of aggression to the onset of World War III: Do you really believe that Russia’s move against Georgia is not an assertion of control over “the near abroad” (as the Russians call their border regions), but rather the first step of a campaign to restore the Warsaw Pact in Eastern Europe and, from there, bring back the Cold War’s Continental standoff? If so—if this really is the start of a new war of civilizations—why aren’t you devoting every waking hour to pressing for the revival of military conscription, for a war surtax to triple the military budget, and—here’s a twist—for getting out of Iraq in order to send a few divisions right away to fight in the larger battle? If not, what exactly are you proposing?

    http://www.slate.com/id/2197281/

  322. D says:

    Grim, if 3b cannot log on at home yet, he may need to restart his modem. It’s happened to me several times, but I only figured it out when the power went out!

  323. jamil says:

    mentalpatient: “Have they all volunteered for military service yet?”

    I served in the military in the 1990’s but are you seriously claiming that only people who are serving in the military are allowed to comment or advocate foreign policy solutions?

    Georgia is an ally of the US (including having 2,000 troops in Iraq) and crucial country supplying energy to the West. If we allow it to be invaded and occupied by Soviets, we have betrayed our ally and our principles. Naturally, I don’t think we should start a war, but we should punish Russia diplomatically (G8, WTO), hopefully Europe does the same, and then we should draw a line (ultimatum that attacking Tbilisi means that we get involved and defend Tbilisi). Only diplomacy, backed by credible force, can help here. Russians could not care less about Euro-wimp diplomacy.

  324. Tired of waiting says:

    In order to get back to talking NJ real estate, I’ll share some of my recent experiences.

    I’ve been looking / bidding on homes over the last 6 months in N.Caldwell, Cedar Grove, West Caldwell, Caldwell, and Verona. Usually in the 500-600K range.

    Over the last 3 months I’ve noticed homes that are updated are going quickly usually in bidding wars in under 20 days. I’ve lost several of those. (all going about 6-10% off peak pricing)

    Although lately, I’m seeing alot of homes suddenly go under contract (white oak’s in N.Caldwell). Some of them I lowballed awhile ago, one I lost in a bidding war recently.

    What is more frustrating is the lack of new inventory coming on to the market. The last 6 weeks have been BRUTAL in this area of essex county. I hope we get a few more chances to bid on updated homes. If not, I may have to settle for some 50 year old POS with original everything.

  325. reinvestor X says:

    Let me tell you something, njpantywaist, while you’re sitting there hiding under a damn bedsheet, the patriots are fully aware of what needs to happen. Iraq needed to be taken care of. Iran is next on the damn list and if we have to, we’ll deal with the damn ruskies.

    We are not f***ked. We are the USA. The home of the PROUD AND THE BRAVE. There is no country like us. We need to show the damn commies we mean business. I don’t have a problem going over there and kicking some azz personally if that’s what’s necessary.

    njpatient Says:
    August 11th, 2008 at 6:01 pm
    289 reinvestor

    “It’s time for the USA to stop this shlt right now.”

    Yeah. Unfortunately, bleeding f+cking moronslike you thought it wa a good idea to send our rneitre military to Iraq instead, so now we’re frucked, unless some brave souls like you volunteer to invade Russia. I have the utmost faith that your nerve won’t fail you.

  326. AntiTrump says:

    Talking about communists, I think Chris Dodd is the biggest commie around these parts.

  327. scribe says:

    Comrade Clotpoll,

    Have you given any thoughts to hosting seminars on short sales and foreclosures, or to organizing foreclosure bus tours in your neck of the woods?

    I’m seeing more and more of that on Craig’s.

    Comrade Scribe

  328. spam spam bacon spam says:

    Kettle,
    you are right…

    the park visitors pull off on front lawns and picnic right on private property. I giggle when I pass by, wondering if they know they’re picnic’in in someone’s front yard…

    Al…

    I live about…hmmmm….lemme think…about 2000 feet from Spruce Run Reservoir’s edge…

    And have never entered the park.

    I can get you high above it, though, in the lands owned by Amherst College…there are some awesome views from across Van Syckel Road…

  329. chicagofinance says:

    gaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    (Deleted! -jb)

  330. chicagofinance says:

    Old pic…

    Hunter’s opinion of David Lereah….
    http://www.njrereport.com/images/Picture_170_Prip.jpg

  331. lostinny says:

    I think that’s a nice pic of Grim.

  332. Clotpoll says:

    scribe (328)-

    Frankly, I’m just too busy to organize it. There are also some good instructors out there doing a much better job teaching the foreclosure/short sale thing than I could ever do.

  333. Clotpoll says:

    spam (329)-

    I get a killer view every AM, coming down Studer Rd, toward Grayrock. Unbelievable.

  334. Clotpoll says:

    tard (326)-

    I’d like to give Putin 20 minutes alone in a room with you. He’d pull your brains out your nose.

  335. Everything's Hobroken says:

    Though hard to believe, I have just heard the idiot Carmen on CNBC suggesting that it is OK for a woman making $75k with 35k debt to buy a home with 5% down.
    This insane advice may well lead this unfortunate into utter destruction. It is disgraceful.

  336. reylopez says:

    To the foreign policy/history experts (jami, rex, et al),

    Contains all the good links of the opinions of your overlords:

    http://tiny.cc/FHsWV

    With this I pledge to no more feed or respond to njrereport’s resident trolls.

    I humbly withdraw from the field of this battle of the stupid.

    Rey

  337. Laughing all the way says:

    ADA Says:
    August 11th, 2008 at 11:22 am

    from last night’s thread,

    Tom, Laughing,

    Yes, 3150 is just my mortgage but that’s what Laughing was referring to in his post #305. My total PITI is 4138.

    Call me conservative, but being on the hook for 4k each month in a climate of rising taxes and job uncertainty is not fun. i think 3k is much, much more manageable.

    Then again, i’ve only owned paid rent my whole life (well, there was one investment property, but i didnt hang onto it long).

  338. still_looking says:

    reinvestor 404,

    No problem there…you are safe, jackass.

    When you end up in the local veterinary hospital, next stop for you will be a pint sized cardboard box with a pagoda on the outside.

    …even then you will be giving folks agita.

    sl

  339. still_looking says:

    396?, clot,

    He’s safe.

    I work in an ER for HUMANS.

    The Veterinary Emergency Hospital in on Rte 22. And they don’t take livestock, especially jackasses.

    sl

  340. still_looking says:

    All Hype,

    Welcome home, little brother!

    And CONGRATULATIONS!!!

    sl

  341. reinvestor X says:

    Please. That little runt is nothing but a punk with a Napoleon complex. He needs his azz kicked and I’d be more than happy to oblige.

    Clotpoll Says:
    August 11th, 2008 at 8:39 pm
    tard (326)-

    I’d like to give Putin 20 minutes alone in a room with you. He’d pull your brains out your nose.

  342. reinvestor X says:

    Tell you what Doc. Consider yourself lucky that you’re a lady and I’m a gentleman. Otherwise, we’d had to go toe to toe like I do with these hardankles that hang around here. Don’t push me.

    still_looking Says:
    August 11th, 2008 at 10:01 pm
    reinvestor 404,

    No problem there…you are safe, jackass.

    When you end up in the local veterinary hospital, next stop for you will be a pint sized cardboard box with a pagoda on the outside.

    …even then you will be giving folks agita.

    sl

  343. Firestormik says:

    tard101,

    Good like for you in kicking the one’s azz with sixth-dan judo black belt around it.
    I hope it will teach you something

  344. chicagofinance says:

    chicagofinance Says:
    August 11th, 2008 at 8:19 pm
    gaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    (Deleted! -jb)

    you suck!

  345. chicagofinance says:

    grim where is my powerpoint on the Mexican Standoff?

  346. Jersey Jim says:

    max Says:
    August 11th, 2008 at 8:44 am
    it is almost impossible to have you home taxes lowered in NJ. it’s a rigged system

    Max,
    you mean the government isn’t here to help us?

  347. Confused In NJ says:

    It would be foolish to attack Russia while the Olympic’s are be held in the real enemy.

Comments are closed.