High noon at the O.K. Corral

From the WSJ:

Home Prices Sink Further

Home values are falling at an accelerating rate in many cities across the U.S.

The Wall Street Journal’s latest quarterly survey of housing-market conditions found that prices declined in all of the 28 major metropolitan areas tracked during the fourth quarter when compared to a year earlier.

The size of the year-to-year price declines was greater than the previous quarter’s in all but three of the markets, the latest indication that the housing market faces considerable challenges.

Inventory levels, meanwhile, are rising in many markets as the number of unsold homes piles up.

Home values dropped the most in cities that have already been hard-hit by the housing bust, including Miami, Orlando, Atlanta, and Chicago, according to data from real-estate website Zillow.com. But price declines also intensified in several markets that so far have escaped the brunt of the downturn, including Seattle and Portland, Ore.

Falling prices are a reflection of weak demand and tight credit conditions that reduce the number of potential buyers.

“There are just not a lot of renters with confidence, with a down payment, with good credit, and without a lot of additional debt,” said John Burns, a homebuilder consultant in Irvine, Calif.

On the inventory front, New York’s Long Island had enough homes on the market at the end of December to last 15 months at the average sales pace. The supply of unsold homes stood at 14 months in Charlotte, N.C., and Nashville, Tenn., and at nearly 13 months for northern New Jersey.

Markets are generally considered balanced when the supply is around six months.

“We’re still running at half speed,” said Jeffrey Otteau, president of Otteau Valuation Group, an East Brunswick, N.J., appraisal firm. “Sales are below year-ago levels and inventory is higher than it was a year ago.” Far-flung suburbs continue to fare worse than homes located closer to core metro centers, he says.

Economists say that the biggest risk to the housing market is that job growth doesn’t pick up. “Without improvement in unemployment, confidence stays low. Purchasing stays low,” says Stan Humphries, chief economist at Zillow.

Market conditions could get worse in the months ahead. Millions of homeowners are in some stage of foreclosure or are seriously delinquent on their mortgages, and millions more owe more than their homes are worth.

Real-estate agents are bracing for an uptick in distressed properties hitting the market, including foreclosures being sold by banks and homes sold by owners via a short sale, in which banks agree to a sale for less than the amount owed.

Sales of foreclosed homes are partly responsible for reducing home values because banks tend to reduce prices quickly to sell the homes. Sales of foreclosures slowed in some markets at the end of last year as document-handling problems raised questions about the integrity of their foreclosure processes. But that could change as banks pick up the pace of foreclosures.

Real-estate agents say that the threat of future price declines has led to a months-long standoff between buyers and sellers.

Sellers spurn what they see as low-ball offers, while buyers are demanding discounts because they are “convinced prices will drop further, and they don’t want to feel like suckers six months later,” says Glenn Kelman, chief executive of Redfin Corp., a Seattle-based real-estate brokerage that operates in nine states. The result is that “it’s high noon at the O.K. Corral on every single transaction.”

This entry was posted in Economics, Housing Bubble, National Real Estate. Bookmark the permalink.

133 Responses to High noon at the O.K. Corral

  1. Mike says:

    Good Morning New Jersey

  2. freedy says:

    Impossible, what about Bergen County? Home prices never go down. It’s close to NYC

  3. grim says:

    From the NY Times:

    Addressing the Issue of Home Affordability

    Long Islanders are ever more anxious about how they can maintain their lifestyle, the report found. An affordable home — defined as costing no more than $254,500, or two and a half times the 2009 median income for the region — “has become a rare commodity.” Average pay is at a 10-year low, down 3 percent from 2000, while average wages across the nation have grown 4 percent.

    Leonie Huddy, the director of the Center for Survey Research at Stony Brook University, which conducted the poll, compared the Island with other suburbs. “Taxes always come up as the single most important problem,” she said, adding that 81 percent of Long Islanders describe property taxes as a serious or extremely serious issue.

    “We also have angst about young people leaving the Island,” she said, noting that 75 percent of those surveyed called the problem serious, versus 48 percent in Westchester County and 44 percent in New Jersey. There are 15 percent fewer 25- to 34-year-olds on the Island than in 2000; the decline is the largest in the region.

    More than 60 percent of Long Islanders cited lack of affordable housing as a very or extremely serious problem, and 50 percent reported having trouble paying the rent or mortgage. Substantially more people see these as troublesome issues in Long Island than in northern New Jersey, Westchester or Connecticut.

    Also, only 21 percent of those neighboring suburbs rated the Island as an excellent or good place to live. “In the 1950s,” Ms. Golob said, “we were the most desirable suburban location, envied by our neighbors for our affordability, beauty and jobs. No more. Our neighbors are disenchanted with our traffic, high taxes and expensive cost of living.”

  4. grim says:

    From CNBC:

    Housing to Hit Bottom in Mid-2011 Say Economists

    U.S. house prices are likely to continue to slide before bottoming out sometime in the middle of this year but will rise just over two percent in 2011 as a whole, according to economists polled by Reuters.

    Asked when they see a bottom for U.S. house prices, 14 of 26 economists said they would trough in either the second or third quarter of 2011.

    Three saw the bottom coming as early as this quarter, while one did not see a bottom until the first three months of 2014.

    “A pullback in prices following the expiration of the homebuyers tax credit was not a surprise. Ultimately, a recovery in the housing sector will depend critically on the job market, which should improve over time,” said Scott Brown at Raymond James.

    Asked how much further prices would fall before stabilizing, the median response of 24 economists who answered was another 3.3 percent drop from current levels. Two economists saw a further decline as sharp as 10 percent.

  5. grim says:

    #4 – It’s ok, because more doctors smoke Camels.

  6. Mikeinwaiting says:

    grim 4 Yes I think I’ve heard that song before ,mid 2011 my a**. Wishful thinking to say the least, got jobs? Enough said.
    grim 5 Classic!

  7. NJToast says:

    A couple of years ago Ivy Zelman called the bottom of the housing market in 2012 and given her track record for correct calls, we have another 18 mos give or take until we are there.

    Looks like this weeks weather will bode well for all you street hockey enthusiasts.

  8. Mike says:

    Grim 5 The Doc lighting up in the office by the nurse had me cracking up!

  9. veets (92)-

    Statistics are also the refuge of dolts like the Bernank, who regularly misread the tea leaves and rely upon complex math formula after jury-rigged statistic to consistently end up 100% wrong.

    What’s the old saying? Don’t believe your lying eyes.

    Just as it’s not accurate to try and paint a picture of the market based solely upon anecdotal evidence, so too is it wrong to rely only upon stats.

    “Some days trying to have an unbiased discussion about real estate in here is nothing less than mission impossible. Had I posted the very same chart with the one exception that it showed incredibly low affordability, instead of high, and unequivacally concluded that real estate will crash, many here would automatically believe whole heartedly in it. But because the result runs counter to a predetermined completely and hopelessly negative outcome, its got to be wraught with manipulation and/or some derivation of irrelevance. Talk about a tough crowd. Lol.”

  10. I thought more doctors smoked sinsemilla than any other type of pot.

  11. The only local doctor my former 12K/year HMO allowed me to visit smelled like a ton of hash, fermenting in the sun.

    Not that I actually know what that smells like…

  12. 30 year, myself and grim know where the bodies (i.e., shadow inventory, abandoned REO, NOD, about-to-short-sale, etc.) are buried.

    The problem isn’t where the market is today, or even how we’ve gotten to this point. The real tipping point is actually somewhere in the near future when we combine massive unemployment, currency collapse and chronic joblessness with a gigantic release of shadow inventory into a market already experiencing another jump in distress sales, BK and FK.

    Good times.

  13. Neanderthal Economist says:

    9 im not really using statistics, im taking recordable factual data and putting it on a chart for easy to digest visual analysis. That mortgage rate data is not being manipulated and if anything cs is overly negative for decent nj middle class towns.
    I suppose median income and cpi can be subject to manipulation if i were to put on my tin foil hat but by how much can it really be off? Even when we plug in shadow stats, and that data is pretty darn aggressive, the end results dont change much.

  14. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Clot 12 ” The problem isn’t where the market is today, or even how we’ve gotten to this point. The real tipping point is actually somewhere in the near future when we combine massive unemployment, currency collapse and chronic joblessness with a gigantic release of shadow inventory into a market already experiencing another jump in distress sales, BK and FK.”

    BINGO!

  15. Mikeinwaiting says:

    I’m switching to Camels.

  16. Dissident HEHEHE says:

    Clot,

    You really think the Bernank even bothers with tea leaves? I think he’s just making the sh*t up as he goes along.

  17. gary says:

    Real-estate agents say that the threat of future price declines has led to a months-long standoff between buyers and sellers.

    So, who do you think is going to blink first? It’s rhetorical, the outcome is confirmed. The only thing to do now is watch as the hyenas consume the carcass.

  18. gary says:

    #4 – I call bullsh1t. Housing bottomed somewhere around 2008; the NAR told me so.

  19. 250k says:

    Question For the Realtors:

    If you had a client who wanted to list their home for sale to catch the maximum number of spring season eyeballs, is there a particular month that you would advise they list?

    Is it better to list in Jan/Feb and get ahead of the curve or does that just make your listing look stagnant as buyers will wait until they get a chance to see more of the inventory? Is it best to list in prime time (April?).

    Assume your client’s home is in one of those desirable towns where multiple bids are still happening on anything priced at or close to market.

  20. xroads says:

    Gary

    “So, who do you think is going to blink first? It’s rhetorical, the outcome is confirmed. The only thing to do now is watch as the hyenas consume the carcass.”

    were we not at this point before the tax credits?( standoff ) they dangled 8k and buyers jumped out of there shoes and they’re underwater now. in one of the articles yesterday every time the couple mentioned they were looking to buy they were told now is the time prices down, low rates etc… and I’m sure they meant friends and family not realtors so what will happen this spring? will Ben pull 100’s of billions out of his a$$? to push the market because they see it as essential to recovery? and are buyers educated enough now to wait?

  21. gary says:

    Assume your client’s home is in one of those desirable towns where multiple bids are still happening on anything priced at or close to market.

    There is no other bidder. It’s a ruse, a scam, a booby-trap. The buyer is being setup for the sting. The buyer has long ago convinced themselves along with reinforcement from a shady used house pusher that this “town” is different; it’s insulated from outside economic conditions. It’s special here and you deserve the best. They even refer to you by your first name – as if they knew you for years.

    The moment a potential buyer hears any form of the word “another offer” or “bid”, don’t walk, but run in the opposite direction. You have tens of thousands of dollars saved up and the only thing the other side wants to do is take it. Remember what Di Niro said in the movie Casino? “All the hype, the glitz, the perks… it’s all designed for one thing: to take your money.”

  22. gary says:

    xroads,

    And are buyers educated enough now to wait?

    That’s why we’re here, to educate the buyers! :)

  23. grim says:

    250k – The spring market is already in gear, slow going due to the weather but still in gear. My suggestion is to get out in front for a quick sale before the need-to buyers all but disappear.

    If not listed now, they need to hit the MLS with good photographs, and be ready to show, in two or three weeks.

  24. Painhrtz says:

    Hey everyone thanks for the kind words and congrats on Friday. Scheduled an appointment with a geneticist and have to wait for the wife’s follow up in two weeks. hopefully everything is a ok, and i’ll start getting excited.

    So when do we get 10 dollar gas I was snowboarding all weekend refused to turn on the news.

  25. 30 year realtor says:

    250K – Agree with Grim. The Spring market is usually getting in gear around the middle of January. Bad weather gets in the way, but if you want your child in school in September you have to be hunting now.

  26. JJ says:

    Whats with New Jersey Asians and Real Estate?

    OK so an NJ Asian/Indian was talking to me about real estate. Feels stocks, commodities, bonds etc are too risky. So they are buying a second home as an investment property in a short sale. I ask why? They say all their money is in bank earning no interest and they want to invest. I say stock market is up 90% since March 2009, you could have bought stock, Commodities had a big run, in 2009 and all of 2010 Corporate Bonds were on sale and now Munis are on sale. Why was your money siting in savings all this time, cuase stocks, bonds etc. are too risky. This from a couple who both work in IT on wall street. Anyhow I say well maybe you should put some money into NJ Muni bonds they are paying 6% tax free, you will never make 6% year over year on housing as an investment after you factor in all the expenses. Then she says I don’t trust NJ Munis as I think state may go bankrupt. Then I go but if you think NJ is going bankrupt and stocks may crash and interest rates are set to rise which will cause bonds to crash isn’t it nuts to buy have most of your cash tied up in two homes in NJ. If NJ goes bankrupt and stocks crash and rates rise at same time housing prices are going to crash. Once again I get real estate is a good investment.

    I think the NAR has brainwashed Asians/Indians to invest in savings account and real estate. Also they seem to fail to understand concept of leverage. A 500K home with 20% down in their minds is a 100K investment. It is a 500K investment. Plus homes can fall more than 20% meaning you can lose more than you invested.

    People with this crazy mindset are preventing re from crashing.

  27. grim says:

    And when I say ready to go in two or three weeks I don’t mean the seller should be sitting around. House needs to be professionally cleaned, carpets especially, most certaintly ozonated if there are any odors, clutter and personality removed, visible problems corrected, etc.

  28. Boomer says:

    250K – Not a realtor but I will give you a bit of on the ground results. I am in Chatham and our friends put their house on the market a week and a half ago at a good price (above purchase price from 3 years ago but a bit less than when the work they put in is included). There is very little inventory and the question they asked was exactly to your point. What to do about inventory versus buyers? They decided to take the chance and list on the early side and it paid off. Multiple offers including one for full price. I think the lack of inventory definitely helped them as there were only a couple of houses in this range ($650K – $750K). If they waited they would most likely have had to go up against more competition. Their open house was non-stop that first weekend and the deal was done by Monday into that first Tuesday. Sometimes lack of inventory can be your friend.

  29. JJ says:

    What the heck is a geneticist? I have several kids, do it with wife, wife pees on stick, I go to first sonogram and look at screen and pretend the blot on the black and white screen looks like something then I drive wife to hospital to have baby.

    Too many Dads think they are having a baby. You are not. Your wife is having a baby. You are writing checks for next 30 years. 30-50% of women I know after they have a kid and feel that bond they never had who spend a few months home with their new baby can’t stand the thought of leaving the kid in day care. Be prepared, in 2012 there is a 30-50% chance you will be the sole breadwinner, it is man-up time.

    It is great having kids but sometimes the only thing that gets me through weekend is thinking of getting on that train monday morning and away from the insanity. AHHH the cut of hot coffee, wall street journel, a piece of heaven for 45 minutes.

    Painhrtz says:

    January 31, 2011 at 8:51 am

    Hey everyone thanks for the kind words and congrats on Friday. Scheduled an appointment with a geneticist and have to wait for the wife’s follow up in two weeks. hopefully everything is a ok, and i’ll start getting excited.

    So when do we get 10 dollar gas I was snowboarding all weekend refused to turn on the news.

  30. Painhrtz says:

    Soylent green is lab cultured people, sometimes I hate being a scientist

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20110130/sc_nm/us_food_meat_laboratory_feature

  31. Painhrtz says:

    JJ, other than bedding functional retards, I’m pretty sure I can beat you in just about every man up category. Making money on wall street doesn’t make you a man and it’s noble that you provide for your kids. I’m quoting Chris Rock here ” your supposed to stupid” You don’t get a medal for doing the obvious.

  32. 250k says:

    grim and 30 yr, thanks.

    So from the sellers perspective, it seems you would advise you can’t treat the home purchase like you would a car purchase. That is, don’t wait until all the new models are out. If you see what you like, buy it now. I would guess that the closer you get to summer (by late April, May) you start to have desperate buyers who actually could drive the sale price up a few % points because they NEED to be in the school system, etc.

  33. Mikeinwaiting says:

    250K 33 Or by late in the selling season you could be competing with sellers who are desperate to sell and are reducing prices, one takes his chances.

  34. pricesstillskyhigh says:

    Long time lurker. Planning to start looking again in March/April. Narrowed it down to Bridgewater/Bedminster/Basking Ridge. Inputs on these areas regarding schools, neighborhood, recent sales is appreciated. Thanks

  35. Libtard In the City says:

    NAR = National Asian Reeducation?

  36. 30 year realtor says:

    Gary #22 – This is not 2006! It takes a special combination of factors to receive multiple offers on a property, but it is not impossible. Over and over on this blog commenters mention that the current inventory is an assortment of overpriced sh*t. Much of the inventory is in need of updating and renovation, not to mention location flaws. So why are you surprised when a sparkling home in a very desirable location is priced at market value and draws multiple offers?

  37. Schrodinger's Cat says:

    2 complementary article from zerohedge today. Got rice?

    Egypt Rapidly Running Out Of Food

    Forget Egypt ATMs running out of cash. A far bigger problem for the country is starting to materialize, one which would promptly shift the revolution into overdrive: the disappearance of all staples. CNN reports: “While discontent, resentment and nationalism continue to fuel demonstrations, one vital staple is in short supply: food. Many families in Egypt are fast running out of staples such as bread, beans and rice and are often unable or unwilling to shop for groceries. Everything is running out. I have three children, and I only have enough to feed them for maybe two more days. After that I do not know what we will do.” school administrator Gamalat Gadalla told CNN.” And while the world is merely concerned about whether the Suez canal is still open, perhaps it is time for a little food paradropping exercise, because if the 80+ million strong population realizes there is nothing to eat, we may just see the kind of Somali ship piracy in the Red Sea we have all grown to love, move just a little bit inland.

    and

    Maersk Suspends Egypt Activities

    And so it starts, as the first of the shipping giants decides evacuation is the better part of valor. Reuters reports that shipping conglomerate Maersk has suspended shipping activities in Egypt. But fear not. The Suez Canal is open. For now. From Reuters: “Danish shipping and oil group A.P. Moller-Maersk has suspended its Egyptian port terminal operations and closed its shipping offices in the country rocked by turmoil, the company said on Monday.” Surely this is bullish for stocks.

  38. dan says:

    It’s TARP bonus day where I thank you all.

    It’s also Grim donation day.

  39. JJ says:

    Ok lets drop trou, what man-up things do you do?
    For me being a man (not a player) involves
    Getting married,
    Buying a house,
    Having a kid,
    Being able to provide for your family. Meaning, one one income, yours.
    Wife can work if she wants to, not because she has too.
    Having a few more kids. I love people with only one kids, whining how hard it is, or a couple with only two kids stretched out over a big time gap saying how hard it is.
    Kids should be had close together for kids so they have playmates not because it interferes with your social life.
    Being able to help out in your house. No maid, nanny, shovel service and be able to repair things on your own, install outlets, paint, hang doors etc. And do it also for your inlaws and parents if necessary.
    Raise children who are bright, smart, well behaved and spend the several hours a night with the kids to make sure they get everything you never had.
    Save, Save Save, make sure you have money saved for their sweet sixteens, college, weddings, first car etc.

    I know I am much more of a man than you as you have no kids. However, when you have a few at home you may be more of a man than me. I hope. When I go to church or the supermarket or vacation. Multiple people often comment how lucky I am that my kids are so well behaved. I am not lucky. I am not lazy I married right and raise my kids right.

    However, it is much more fun to brag about being a playa. Then bragging I do stuff like sell my Jets holloween tickets to spend day taking kids trick or treating. Most of the blue collar guys in my neighborhood was drunk at game all day long. Or going to my kids school activities. No matter how inconveint or boring I go. Heck I flew economy once from Tokyo and took cab straight to daughters dance recietal. A few guys there told me they would have just blown it off or hit airport lounge and waited till first business class flight.

    Painhrtz says:
    January 31, 2011 at 9:11 am

    JJ, other than bedding functional retards, I’m pretty sure I can beat you in just about every man up category. Making money on wall street doesn’t make you a man and it’s noble that you provide for your kids. I’m quoting Chris Rock here ” your supposed to stupid” You don’t get a medal for doing the obvious.

  40. Anon E. Moose says:

    JJ [40];

    Perfect example of why I marvel at the economic stupidity of mankind: Namely, that the ability to sell electric ice makers to Eskimos (or anything else to anyone) is highly rewarded. There’s not a damn bit of difference that matters between boiler-room cold call pushers and Wall Street He-Men, except the clientele of the latter are stupid enough to think that paying more for the service makes it more valuable.

  41. Painhrtz says:

    OK JJ you win, you get a medal for doing the things your supposed to do. Happy now

  42. gary says:

    30 year,

    So why are you surprised when a sparkling home in a very desirable location is priced at market value and draws multiple offers?

    It doesn’t sound inplausible, I just don’t believe it. In 2001, we made four bids over the span of five months on houses. Each time we were told that there were “multiple” offers on the house but yet were refused to see any evidence of these bids. You would’ve thought that we were splashing holy water on the devil according to the reaction from the realtors when asked to see the bids.

    We were told to keep bidding and they would let us know if we are in the running. Right. Whether it’s 2001, 2006 or 2011, it doesn’t really matter. If someone likes to play that game, that’s fine but I’m not playing. Prices are down 18% from peak with still more to come. All the chatter is just a bunch of bullsh1t. When the median falls another 10% to 15% from current levels, then we’ll be getting close. Until then, I’ll watch from the sideline.

    BTW, I really enjoy reading your posts and offering your insight. Your posts are always logical and to the point.

  43. Anon E. Moose says:

    Gary [43];

    Unfortunately, I do believe 30-yr, which is what depresses me about the a$$hats who apparently are being given more dollars than they have sense to buy houses with.

    The problem as a buyer, however, is that from a game theory standpoint you have no idea of whether there are multiple bids, whetehr the bids are from quality buyers, or even above yours. So in the end both you and 30-yr can both be right: there are multiple bid situations; the best way to handle them as a buyer are to tell the seller that if he has a better offer that can close, he should take it (in other words, to go fnck himself). That being the case, the smart buyer makes 4 bids at once: First, Last, Best and Only — all with short fuses attached.

  44. Orion says:

    It was BFF!

    Bank Failure
    – January 28, 2011 – Four New Bank Failures, Largest is First Community Bank in Taos, New Mexico. On Friday, Federal and State Regulators closed four banks, the largest of these bank failures was First Community Bank in New Mexico with assets of $2.31 billion. Assets of these four bank failures total $3.4 billion, and included bank failures in New Mexico, Colorado, Wisconsin and Oklahoma. These four bank failures are estimated to cost the FDIC $545.5 million. Earlier in the month, regulators seized seven banks bringing the total number of bank failures in January to eleven. These eleven bank failures are estimated to cost the FDIC $1.19 billion. 2011 bank failure is continuing where 2010 left off. Florida, Georgia, Illinois and California had the highest number of bank failures in 2010, and were some of the states hardest hit by the foreclosue and real estate crisis. These bank failures are generally due to inadequate capital and mounting loan losses as defaults on commercial loans and residential mortgage loans continue to increase.

  45. 30 year realtor says:

    Gary #43 – My advise to prospective buyers is, prices will continue to fall for sometime into the future. Housing is not an investment, it is a roof over your head. If you must buy, you should plan to be there for 10 years or more.

    I agree, you should not engage in multiple offer situations. Recently had one where there were 2 buyers. Buyer 1 walked away. Buyer 2 increased their offer by almost 10%. Buyer 2 would have got the house even if they did not increase their offer.

    I never disclose the number of offers in a multiple offer situation or the amount of the offers. Keeping people in the dark usually results in a higher price for the seller.

  46. Orion says:

    Details:

    WASHINGTON — Regulators on Friday closed banks in Colorado, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Wisconsin, lifting to 11 the number of bank failures in 2011 following last year’s toll of 157 taken down by the weak economy and piles of soured loans.

    The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. took over the banks: First Community Bank, based in Taos, N.M, with $2.3 billion in assets; FirsTier Bank, based in Louisville, Colo., with $781.5 million in assets; First State Bank of Camargo, Okla., with $43.5 million in assets; and Evergreen State Bank, based in Stoughton, Wis., with $246.5 million in assets.

    Minneapolis-based U.S. Bank agreed to assume the assets and deposits of First Community Bank. Bank 7, based in Oklahoma City, is acquiring the assets and deposits of First State Bank. McFarland State Bank of McFarland, Wis., is acquiring those of Evergreen State Bank. The FDIC was unable to find a buyer for FirsTier Bank, and it approved the payout of the bank’s insured deposits.

    The failure of First Community Bank is expected to cost the deposit insurance fund $260 million. The failure of FirsTier Bank is expected to cost $242.6 million; that of First State Bank, $20.1 million; and Evergreen State Bank, $22.8 million.

  47. grim says:

    I usually tell my clients to work out the negotiation in their own minds before the offer is submitted. What is your initial offer, what is the maximum? Work it out, and write it down before even submitting the initial. Refer to it every time an offer is countered, or a seller asks for a higher resubmission. If you hit it, that’s it, don’t let the emotion of bidding push you higher. It is very easy to increase a bid a few thousand once you go through the effort of putting a written offer together, because once you sign on that line, you won’t be able to separate out emotion. It starts to get real, and expectations start to rise, setting the limits early, and respecting them, is the only way to make it through.

  48. gary says:

    30 year [#45],

    Again, thank you for the insight! :)

  49. gary says:

    Anon [#43],

    That being the case, the smart buyer makes 4 bids at once: First, Last, Best and Only — all with short fuses attached.

    Agree, nothing more could be said.

  50. seneca says:

    Gary (43)

    I found a house I liked in a “top tier ” town last september. It was post tax rebate time and so market was quiet compared to a crazy spring selling season. It was the first time since looking for a home which started back in ’06 that I had time to walk through it twice AND bring in an architect AND a contractor to give me estimates on renovation costs. Sellers agent said please make an offer any offer as they have had no activity at all.

    I finally submitted an offer and of course was told that NOW there was another bidder and did I want to bid higher? Well, I countered a few more times going all the way up to the most I was willing to pay. Was told sorry, your offer is not the best. House closed two months later for 10k more than my offer. In hindsight I would have gladly paid 10k more. The family that bought it had to relocate from upstate NY with kids and I guess were more willing to pay whatever it cost to get into a house. I knew what my initial offer was as well as my best and final when I started the process and I stuck with it and proved to myself that my calculations were pretty much at current market price.

    There is no real rental inventory where I am looking so in the next few months I will bite the bullet and buy. Its time and I am out of patience. I am going to be “that guy” spoiling it for everyone else waiting for the magical 10-20% further drop in the top towns. If I feel this way I am sure there are others who do as well. At least I can take solace in knowing I didn’t pay peak price and now I will have someplace to store my powdered milk and rice when the riots break out here in the US.

  51. gary says:

    grim,

    Good Advice!

  52. grim says:

    Bend over taxpayers, the gauntlet has been dropped.

    From the Star Ledger:

    N.J. finance board approves 23 percent tax hike in Camden, allowing city to rehire some police

    A handful of Camden police officers who lost their jobs to budget cuts this month may get their jobs back — but not without costing city taxpayers.

    The New Jersey Local Finance Board approved a waiver to the city’s 3-percent tax cap Friday, allowing Camden to raise municipal property taxes 23 percent, city officials said today.

  53. gary says:

    seneca [51],

    All I could say to you is good luck and as grim stated, don’t let the emotion take over.

  54. Libtard says:

    the best way to handle them as a buyer are to tell the seller that if he has a better offer that can close, he should take it (in other words, to go fnck himself).

    I used that line every time and like Grim suggested, always had our last and final. In one of our bids they actually came back to us when the highest bidder dropped out. They wanted us to raise our price anyway. Glad we didn’t. Did much much better almost a year later.

    Do your research, know what you think the house is worth and then make that your bid. If someone bids more, move on.

  55. safe as houses says:

    #53 grim,

    I read over the weekend that Camden hasn’t had a property tax increase in 15 years.

  56. Schrodinger's Cat says:

    Can Camden actually collect on that property tax increase?????

  57. DL says:

    Yikes: ref 109 from yesterday. Friend of mine bought in Doylestown in June 2010 on Nicklaus Dr. Ask was 475, he offered 450 and it was accepted same day. Same street now looking at 450 ask. He may have lost 25k in six months already.

  58. Mike says:

    Who’s Got the cojones to go partners with me in this ice cream shop in Camden http://www.weichert.com/33424312/?cityid=7479&mls=47%2c74%2c9&view=gallery It’s 290K and the taxes are only $2500. Oh come we all know the procedure for armed robbery

  59. DL says:

    Ref 62: If you can sell ice cream before noon when the bad element wakes up; you got a business model that will work in Camden.

  60. Shore Guy says:

    ” ice cream shop in Camden ”

    North of Wilson? Egads! I ended up there once and it was the single most frightening thing I ever experienced.

  61. Libtard says:

    “I ended up there once and it was the single most frightening thing I ever experienced.”

    Yeah, but did you try the ice cream?

  62. Shore Guy says:

    “23 percent”

    And Campbells should stay in Camden, why?

  63. Shore Guy says:

    “I usually tell my clients to work out the negotiation in their own minds before the offer is submitted.”

    Anyone who enters negotiations without being willing to walk away has already lost.

  64. Shore Guy says:

    Hey, who moved Egypt? And, anyone see Iraq? it was just here a minute ago. It must be with my keys.

  65. Shore Guy says:

    “I’m switching to Camels”

    Muskrats and squirels are just as good and, because we have a huge domestic supply and because there is no import duty, they are more economical. Roll them yourself and you are golden.

  66. Shore Guy says:

    ” ozonated ”

    DUDE!! I am sooooooooooooooooooo ozonated.

  67. Shore Guy says:

    Back to work.

  68. Shore Guy says:

    Gary from that link of yours:

    There are two problems with the jobs recovery to date. Employers haven’t added enough jobs. And those they have added aren’t particularly good ones.

    “The former has gotten a lot of attention. But the low-wage jobs that have been added are also a cause for concern.”

    How can this be a cause for concern. Don’t people keep saying that we need to drive down the difference between our wages and the rest of the world? If that is true, isn’t it in our best interest to drive wages down to Chinese, Pakistani, and related wage levels? Then we can be rich again, no?

  69. Schrodinger's Cat says:

    Shore,

    I see you have never been to some of the nicer parts of baltimore

  70. DL says:

    We also used to drink in the cemetary next to Lady of Lordes Hospital where Witman’s grave stands.

  71. Schrodinger's Cat says:

    Shore,

    Ms South Carolina was right!! It would all be OK if we just got them some maps!

    “Recent polls have shown a fifth of Americans can’t locate the U.S. on a world map. Why do you think this is?”

    Upton responded:[1]

    “I personally believe that U.S. Americans are unable to do so because, uh, some . . . people out there in our nation don’t have maps and, uh, I believe that our, uh, education like such as in South Africa and, uh, the Iraq, everywhere like such as, and, I believe that they should, our education over HERE in the U.S. should help the U.S., uh, or, uh, should help South Africa and should help the Iraq and the Asian countries, so we will be able to build up our future, for our children”

  72. Painhrtz says:

    Cat, she should thank her Abrahamic god she is pretty. the first time I saw that clip one thought popped into my head, wow she is smart for South Carolina. Followed by we are doomed

  73. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Shore 69 I do roll my own , about a buck a pack.

  74. Schrodinger's Cat says:

    Pain

    the future wife of a wall street banker.

  75. ricky_nu says:

    I’d take her as a wife, she is just not allowed to speak.

  76. Shore Guy says:

    Ket,

    Oh, indeed I have been all over Charm City, which could be a sister city of Camden. Heading west on Broadway, Baltimore gets awfully unnerving very quickly once one gets past JHU Hospital.

  77. Painhrtz says:

    Shore it is unerving right up to JHU. I hate going to our offices in Maryland

  78. Schrodinger's Cat says:

    parts of baltimore look down right apocolyptic

  79. Shore Guy says:

    This came to me via an ASCAP newsletter and may be of interest/use to some here:

    http://www.ascap.com/playback/2011/01/features/limelight.aspx

  80. Shore Guy says:

    Ket,

    THAT is the word I wanted to use but frigg’n Android kept messing with it and I gave up.

  81. Shore Guy says:

    Back to the salt mine.

  82. chicagofinance says:

    That is a decent down payment on a house…..

    Horndog actor Charlie Sheen reportedly spent more than $500,000 on hookers and drugs in the six months before he checked into his latest rehab stint.

    The “Two And A Half Men” star is said to “have consumed mountains of cocaine and other drugs” as he partied uncontrollably, RadarOnline reported today.

  83. Painhrtz says:

    Cat fixed it for you

    parts of baltimore ARE apocalyptic

  84. JJ says:

    Charlie gets one million per show, a show can be filmed in one week. So 500k is just 2.5 days pay. If we count taxes maybe at most one weeks pay

    chicagofinance says:
    January 31, 2011 at 2:02 pm

    That is a decent down payment on a house…..

    Horndog actor Charlie Sheen reportedly spent more than $500,000 on hookers and drugs in the six months before he checked into his latest rehab stint.

    The “Two And A Half Men” star is said to “have consumed mountains of cocaine and other drugs” as he partied uncontrollably, RadarOnline reported today.

  85. Shore Guy says:

    Wasn’t his dad wrecked on coke whilst filming Apocalypse Now?

  86. Tim says:

    Seriously when will it end? hopefully we can beat this double dip and head back up the chart.

  87. Mr Chairman says:

    not a bad day for this country..

    “U.S. District Judge Roger Vinson has ruled that Obama’s health care law is unconstitutional. The decision in a nutshell is this: the individual mandate is unconstitutional and it is not severable, therefore, the entire act must be declared void. “

  88. Juice Box says:

    Nice sunny afternoon in Florida. Anyone want to remind me why it is
    So great living in NY Metro?

  89. Shore Guy says:

    Pain,

    Ever venture into the neighborhoods around Druid Hill Park?

  90. New in FL says:

    Hey Juice Box,
    I think that living in NY metro is preferable to living in Florida because the proximity to Camden. It’s commutable.
    Arguments for sunny, 75 degree days in mid-winter wither by comparison.

  91. Painhrtz says:

    Shore, no I haven’t? Isn’t the area around the park nothing but burnt out Ghetto? If I remeber the last time i was down there someone had found a murdered baby in the park

  92. chicagofinance says:

    Martin Sheen had a heart attack during filming…..

    91.Shore Guy says:
    January 31, 2011 at 2:22 pm
    Wasn’t his dad wrecked on coke whilst filming Apocalypse Now?

  93. JJ says:

    Nifty Fifty

    Published: January 31 2011 15:09 | Last updated: January 31 2011 20:29

    1972 historic p/e ratiosQuick, name a “one decision stock” – a business team so good that valuation is a secondary consideration. For those investors foolish enough to believe in such things, Google and Apple – market darlings for the better part of a decade – might well fit the bill.

    But go back 40 years and Xerox and Kodak, two stocks that tumbled last week and have had awful decades, were similar bellwethers that fund managers happily owned at nearly any price. Leading members of a group dubbed the “Nifty Fifty”, they traded at an average of 42 times price-to-earnings at their 1972 peak, pricier than today’s tech leaders but a similar multiple of revenue.

  94. nj escapee says:

    This is one heck of a forecast:

    Hazardous weather condition(s):

    Winter Storm Watch

    Tonight…Cloudy. Snow likely after midnight. Snow accumulation around an inch. Lows around 20. Northeast winds around 5 mph. Chance of snow 70 percent.

    Tuesday…Snow. Sleet in the morning…then sleet and freezing rain in the afternoon. Additional snow and sleet accumulation of 3 to 5 inches. Highs in the upper 20s. Northeast winds around 5 mph. Chance of precipitation 90 percent.

    Tuesday Night…Snow…sleet and freezing rain likely in the evening…then snow…sleet with a chance of freezing rain after midnight. Total snow accumulation of 4 to 8 inches. Near steady temperature in the mid 20s. Northeast winds 5 to 10 mph. Chance of precipitation 90 percent.

    Wednesday…Freezing rain and sleet in the morning…then freezing rain and rain likely in the afternoon. Little or no additional sleet accumulation. Highs in the lower 30s. East winds around 10 mph… Becoming north in the afternoon. Gusts up to 25 mph. Chance of precipitation near 100 percent.

    Wednesday Night…Mostly cloudy. Snow and freezing rain likely in the evening…then a chance of light snow after midnight. Little or no snow accumulation. Lows in the lower 20s. Northwest winds 10 to 15 mph. Chance of precipitation 60 percent.

    Thursday…Mostly sunny. Highs in the upper 20s.

    Thursday Night…Partly cloudy in the evening…then becoming mostly clear. Lows around 10 above.

  95. DoughBoy says:

    Just got the news that after having an accepted offer (2003 purchase price) late last week, a ‘new bid’ has come in over the weekend at asking price.

    Too bad, I really liked that house too. I even told them to give me a call when this sale doesn’t work out and I’d consider it if I’m not in anything yet.

  96. jamil says:

    “This is one heck of a forecast:”

    Al Gore was unavailable for comments.

  97. Simply Ravishing HEHEHE says:

    What is the difference between sleet and freezing rain?

  98. JJ says:

    How are all these people getting approved for mortgages, I thought it was tough now.

    DoughBoy says:
    January 31, 2011 at 4:39 pm

    Just got the news that after having an accepted offer (2003 purchase price) late last week, a ‘new bid’ has come in over the weekend at asking price.

    Too bad, I really liked that house too. I even told them to give me a call when this sale doesn’t work out and I’d consider it if I’m not in anything yet.

  99. grim says:

    How are all these people getting approved for mortgages, I thought it was tough now.

    Nope, you heard wrong.

  100. leftwing says:

    “Cat, she should thank her Abrahamic god she is pretty. the first time I saw that clip one thought popped into my head, wow she is smart for South Carolina. Followed by we are doomed”

    Yeah, I had another thought….

  101. leftwing says:

    Re: Camden ice cream

    The listing doesn’t lie. No need to open before noon AND you can run it 12 months. How will the owner explain? Junkies need sugar….

    “Sure, you can open it in the colder months if you are an enterprising entrepreneur. I can explain how. Call and find out if you have what it takes to turn a profit in this down economy. This is a very good cash business in an up and coming neighborhood. Open Sunday to Saturday 12pm-10pm. “

  102. chicagofinance says:

    Faber…this is so good….it doesn’t let up…minute 8:00 is the high point….
    http://www.bloomberg.com/video/66163222/

  103. grim says:

    Junkies need sugar….

    Is that some kind of street slang for, ‘drug front’?

  104. cobbler says:

    What does Maryland do differently?
    Off-hand it looks like Baltimore has a bigger chunk of Maryland population than Newark, Camden and Trenton together have of NJ’s. Despite this, MD’s finances are among the soundest among the states. Could anyone opine what do they do differently (teachers and police seem to be paid rather well…)?

  105. DoughBoy says:

    Well, I’m one of the people that’s been renting and saving, I’ve got zero debt (cars paid off, no student loans, etc), and I’ve got ~800 credit scores. That’s how I got approved.

    Supposedly there is a single female putting 30% down on the house and paying list price on the house.

  106. Anon E. Moose says:

    Cobler [111];

    What does Maryland do differently?… Baltimore has a bigger chunk of Maryland population than Newark, Camden and Trenton together have of NJ’s

    Concentrating more of the non-productive population where it can do the least harm to the productive parts? I wonder if that’s considered triage? On the other hand, PG (Prince George’s) Co. is another real gem of that state.

  107. Anon E. Moose says:

    DoughBoy [112];

    I appreciate the frustration of your preparations and due dilligence going to waste. I hate to quibble with terminology, the seller had apparently ‘agreed in principle’ to accept your offer, but apparently you did not yet have an enforceable contract. If so, later bids for double the price wouldn’t affect your position.

    Repeat after me: “Thank you very much. Our offer is rescinded. Best of luck.” Follow up with a fax to the seller’s agent stating the same. If the rumored sale goes through, the other person will have grossly overpaid. Would you want to switch places with them? When it falls through, the seller will surely come back to you. When they do, for the love of God knock $10K off your offer before you go forward.

  108. 250K (19)-

    Invalid question. There is no such thing as the spring selling season anymore.

    “Question For the Realtors:

    If you had a client who wanted to list their home for sale to catch the maximum number of spring season eyeballs, is there a particular month that you would advise they list?”

  109. Confused In NJ says:

    104.Simply Ravishing HEHEHE says:
    January 31, 2011 at 5:06 pm
    What is the difference between sleet and freezing rain

    Sleet comes from the air as ice pellets and bounces on ground contact, freezing rain as water which freezes on ground contact. You can shovel sleet, not so with freezing rain.

  110. Shore Guy says:

    Sleet is frozen rain (different process than hail) whereas freezing rain is supercooled liquid water that freezes upon contact with solid surfaces.

  111. Shore Guy says:

    What Confused said while I was fighting with this bloody android keyboard.

  112. Shore Guy says:

    Freezing rain coats EVERYTHING, encased even, and can bring down tree, wires, etc. After one lives through an ice storm (and with it the cracking and snapping of trees throughout the night) one never again wants to see freezing rain despite its beauty.

  113. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Glad we got that sleet/freezing rain thing clarified.
    Shore 119 been there, not pleasant & yes the next day it was an awesome site to behold.

  114. gary says:

    Anon [114],

    Amen!!

  115. Neanderthal Economist says:

    Trump threatened to run for president today as a republican. Oh boy.

  116. Neanderthal Economist says:

    119 shore, can it bring a townhome down?

  117. Neanderthal Economist says:

    My favorite was the intense snow fall mixed with lightning last week. This weather is straight out of the Poultergeist.

  118. seneca says:

    Accuweather shows that we are indeed getting sleet and snow and freezing rain during various points in time Tue/Wed but at 6pm it shows “Ice”. What sort of precipitation is Ice?

  119. Libtard says:

    “Trump threatened to run for president today as a republican. Oh boy.”

    Well if there is anyone who is familiar with taking properties bankrupt he is your man. I’m sure he could do the same with countries just as well. Can’t wait for Jamil to explain how this too is a wise choice.

  120. nj escapee says:

    I’d vote for Trump. I’d consider a vote for Clot or Gary too.

  121. jamil says:

    letarded: “Can’t wait for Jamil to explain how this too is a wise choice.”

    If you believe Trump is running (rather than bloviating and getting free publicity), you are even dumber than I thought.

  122. nj escapee says:

    Imagine a new trump tower on the grounds were the white house sits and the new southern command @ west palm..

  123. Sleet is a great band, if you’re a fan of power pop.

    http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/sleet-ep/id184376582

  124. relo says:

    39: JJ,

    Some might think being a real man entails doing all those things and not patting yourself on the back about it on some blog. Then again, some might not frequent said blog as much if you did not.

  125. horoscope says:

    This is really interesting! I’ll visit this site more often to learn new things about French. I love this site! I’ll recommend this to my friend!

  126. J. says:

    neanderthal #122: At least if Trump runs for president we don’t have to worry about him buying the Mets.

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