Signs of recovery? Or just a shift due to the weather?

From CNBC:

Did Warm Winter Steal Spring Housing?

As if we really needed a reminder that today’s housing market is still very fragile, the first installment in a slew of housing data to be released this week came in below expectations.

Home builder sentiment, as measured by the National Association of Home Builders’ monthly sentiment survey, was unchanged in March, and February’s reading was revised down.

This after five straight months of gains in builder confidence.

“Many of our members continue to cite obstacles on the road to recovery, including persistently tight builder and buyer credit and the ongoing inventory of distressed properties in some markets, said NAHB chief economist David Crowe in a release.

With temperatures in most of the country hitting near record highs in January and February, it begs the question, did much of the Spring market start early, and did it steal from the historically strong months of March and April?

“We think it has pulled forward a useful amount,” says analyst Stephen East of ISI Group. “It definitely helps breaking ground and has been a big help on the jobs front.”

In fact ISI studied weather in all four regions and reported that while favorable economic trends and specifically job growth are the primary driver of renewed housing activity, “We believe some demand was pulled forward from the later Spring months, implying the first quarter could be above investor expectations, while the second quarter could be below expectations.”

Weather cannot be discounted in home sales, especially sales of new construction, since builders can offer potentially faster turnarounds for new orders if they’re not hampered by frozen earth. February saw a big spike in the “current sales” component of the home builder sentiment index. Buyer traffic in March was unchanged.

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301 Responses to Signs of recovery? Or just a shift due to the weather?

  1. grim says:

    While there may have been some minor weather related increase, the overall number of “pulled forward” sales would be very small.

    The question is easy to answer, however, we need to get data on the closings before we can make the determination. The answers to these two questions will let us know
    if indeed, sales were pulled forward due to the weather.

    1) Is the time between contract and closing longer this year, than in previous years? This would be indicative of buyers/sellers waiting until the summer months to close, due to school-age kids (one of the largest groups of buyers/sellers). While these contracts might have been pulled forward, generally the closing dates wouldn’t be.

    2) Has the overall mix shifted to larger/more expensive homes vs previous years? Generally, we see the mix of sold homes shift on an annual basis, smaller and less expensive homes in the winter months, and larger, more expensive homes in the summer months (again, big impact due to families).

  2. Mike says:

    Good Morning New Jersey

  3. grim says:

    February Contracts (All GSMLS except for Bergen which is NJMLS)

    Bergen
    2011 – 490
    2012 – 568 (Up 16%)

    Essex
    2011 – 222
    2012 – 365 (Up 64%)

    Hunterdon
    2011 – 90
    2012 – 92 (Up 2%)

    Morris
    2011 – 265
    2012 – 336 (Up 27%)

    Passaic
    2011 – 142
    2012 – 194 (Up 37%)

    Somerset
    2011 – 177
    2012 – 208 (Up 18%)

    Sussex
    2011 – 69
    2012 – 120 (Up 74%)

    Union
    2011 – 205
    2012 – 289 (Up 41%)

    Warren
    2011 – 60
    2012 – 70 (Up 17%)

    Overall
    2011 – 1720
    2012 – 2240 (Up 30%)

  4. grim says:

    From Fortune:

    The one number to watch for a housing recovery

    Over the past few months, many economists have concluded that that the U.S. housing market has reached a turning point and is healing. This may sound hard to believe, since home prices have continued their downward trend. In 2011, prices fell by 4% following nearly a 30% decline since the property bubble paeked in June 2006. They ended the year at a 10-year low.

    Indeed, prices aren’t likely going to rise for a while. But this might not necessarily mean the housing market isn’t on the mend. Perhaps we’re looking at the recovery all wrong, says Paul Dales at Capital Economics. In a report to clients recently, the economist said higher prices won’t be the sign that tells us there’s a real recovery under way. Rather, the recent pick-up in sales is what we should pay attention to.

    After all, prices tend to be a lagging indicator. It could take six months for any improvements to show in the market, if not longer.

    “Even if the asking price is at the right level when the home is first listed, it may still take a few months to find a buyer and another month or so before the contract is closed,” Dales wrote to clients last week. “The selling price that is registered at the end of this process therefore relates to the market conditions somewhat earlier.”

    And a series of home sales data released later this week is expected to show that home purchases probably climbed in February to their highest level in nearly two years, according to the forecasts in a Bloomberg survey. Sales of new and previously-owned properties combined are expected to rise to an annual rate of 4.93 million – the strongest since May 2010, and up from 4.89 million in January.

    The evidence reminds us that perhaps we should change our expectations of what a housing recovery might look like, particularly following a crisis marked by record foreclosures and a financial crisis that sent the economy into one of the deepest recessions. The recovery we have been anticipating is defined more on the rate at which the glut of vacant properties comes off the market as opposed to any steady rise in prices, which some think won’t happen for another few years.

    The inventory of unsold homes has dwindled, falling in January to 6.1 month’s worth of supply – its lowest level since March 2005. A supply of six months is generally considered ideal for a healthy housing market, but there continue to be several headwinds at play that could weigh down prices.

    So if anyone is looking at prices for signs of a recovery, it’s likely that they’ll miss it.

  5. grim says:

    From the NY Times:

    The New Suburban Poverty

    In many of America’s once pristine suburbs, harbingers of inner-city blight — overgrown lots, boarded up windows, abandoned residences — are the new eyesores. From the Midwestern rust-belt to the burst housing bubbles of Nevada, California and Florida, even in small pockets of still affluent regions like Du Page County, Ill., the nation’s soaring poverty rates are visibly reclaiming last century’s triumphal “crabgrass frontier.” In well-heeled Illinois towns like Glen Allyn and Elgin, unkempt, weedy lawns blot the formerly manicured, uniform and tidy landscape.

    The Brookings Institution reported two years ago that “by 2008 suburbs were home to the largest and fastest growing poor population in the country.” In the previous eight years, major metropolitan suburbs had seen poverty rates climb by 25 percent, almost five times faster than cities. Nationwide, 55 percent of the poor living in the nation’s metropolitan regions lived in suburbs.

    To add insult to injury, a new measure to calculate poverty — introduced by the Census Bureau just last year — darkens an already bleak picture: nationally, 51 million households had incomes less than 50 percent above the official poverty line, and nearly half of these households were in suburbs.

    Why is poverty soaring in the suburbs? Part of the answer, according to the Brookings Institution, is simple demographics: More Americans live in the suburbs, so there are more poor people there, too. But the recent downturn has also had an outsize impact on suburbs, with the decline in certain categories of jobs and an end to the housing boom that drew many urbanites and immigrants to the suburbs in the first place.

    The climbing rates of suburban poverty mark a definitive end to the Fordist model of mass production and consumption, and its most internationally recognized poster child: homogeneous middle class families cradled safely in ever expanding suburban developments. To be sure, this now quintessential form of American living — tract subdivisions distant from work, shopping and urban amenities — was itself once an American novelty.

  6. Extinction event, dead ahead.

  7. Brass Balls says:

    The February Contracts being way up year over year is fairly useless data points. Feb 2011 had horrific nasty snowstorms and Feb 2012 he had spring like weather AND 29 DAYS. While Feb 2011 had 28 days.

  8. chicagofinance says:

    I am still crushed that you did not embrace the Corpse Plant :(

    There Went Meat says:
    March 20, 2012 at 6:04 am
    Extinction event, dead ahead.

  9. chicagofinance says:

    grim EDT please….

  10. 3B says:

    And now we have the big sell off on the 10 year from 1.97 at the beginning of the month to 2.37 yesterday, and this right has the Spring market starts to take off. That will have an impact.

  11. chicagofinance says:

    Gangster’ sought in groom slay
    By DOUG AUER, LARRY CELONA & JOSH SAUL

    They picked the wrong guy to push around.

    Law-enforcement sources say surveillance video shows that groom-to-be Anthony Lacertosa and his boozing buddies threw a Staten Island restaurant employee to the ground — but the angered worker was alleged Albanian gangster Redinel Dervishaj, who then allegedly killed Lacertosa with a butcher knife.

    Investigators believe Dervishaj, 35 — who was shot in the arm during a 2007 gangland extortion attempt — has since borrowed money from a friend and fled the city, a law-enforcement source said.

    Surveillance footage taken outside the Annadale eatery during Lacertosa’s engagement party Saturday shows the 27-year-old bricklayer and his pals trashing the joint’s patio furniture and knocking Dervishaj to the ground, a law-enforcement source said.

    The video shows the restaurant’s manager brandishing a gun as Dervishaj — who is missing a finger — fetched a knife from inside to confront Lacertosa and his crew, said another law-enforcement source.

    The manager allegedly tried to fire his weapon, but the gun jammed. Dervishaj then stabbed Lacertosa in the torso, killing him in front of his horrified fiancée, the sources said.

    Police found the bloody knife in a trash bin outside a nearby deli, a source said, and yesterday, two restaurant employees cleaned the blood off the ground with a mop.

    In 2007, Dervishaj went with a fellow Albanian gangster to a man’s house in Queens, threatening to kill the man’s family if he didn’t cough up $20,000. The man refused, instead shooting Dervishaj in the arm and killing his partner with a .357 Magnum. Dervishaj pleaded guilty to attempted grand larceny and was sentenced to time served, a law-enforcement source said.

    The violence runs in the family. Dervishaj’s brother, Plaurent Dervishaj, 39, is wanted in Albania for allegedly murdering at least four rival gang leaders, including one with an anti-tank weapon. Albanian law-enforcement officials declared Plaurent Dervishaj their most wanted fugitive.

    Lacertosa – who went by the nickname “The Hulk” – was arrested for marijuana in 2011.

    Fiancee Bridgette Schneider, 24, was too distraught to speak yesterday.

    “My sister isn’t up to talking,” said one of her sister’s outside Schneider’s home.

  12. seif says:

    7 – Brass Balls

    i read some of your late posts from yesterday. curious…do you consider yourself a miser?

  13. brian says:

    JJ, Don’t forget to ask for that facebook password before you hire:

    Job seekers getting asked for Facebook passwords

    http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-505244_162-57400585/job-seekers-getting-asked-for-facebook-passwords/

  14. 1987 Condo Buyer says:

    #13 College admissions are requesting similar, during interviews they have applicant enter FB and enter password so they can review what they have on their site.

  15. Brass Balls says:

    I think that is a great idea. I do check social media before I call a candidate in for an interview. Personally I would like to ban Facebook for employees. Thank god they cant access it at work. Pretty much excessive use of facebook and Iphones rot the brain. You know what I was thinking to save money, lots of companies pay a ton of money for IVF, fertility treatments for employees. It is driving up medical costs. Meanwhile their is high unemployment in Ireland. Maybe I could just import a few of the lads to America and rent them out to companies whose female employees have trouble conceiving. The irish multiple like rabbits. A quick five minutes on the conference room table I could fertilize the women and the Irish guy would be happy with two hundred bucks and a pint of guiness.

    To be honest. I have seen some of these women’s husbands. I personally think the ladies have no problem at all. It is just Darwins law that is preventing their husbands from getting it done. One lady had a husband who made big bucks. But the indian guy, looked mexican and was short and dumpy. Maybe the lady would be better off with a young Pierce Bosman or that Irish golfer, six foot two inch strapping 19 year old man doing it. Also could set something up for the men with attractive Irish Farm girls. I kinda like it. That whole ton of money and time for fertility and adoption stuff is not productive.

    brian says:
    March 20, 2012 at 7:51 am
    JJ, Don’t forget to ask for that facebook password before you hire:

    Job seekers getting asked for Facebook passwords

  16. gary says:

    3B [10],

    I received some listings last week from a realtor which included a few houses in River Edge. The one house had an asking price of 599K. The taxes? $15,400. No comment required.

  17. gary says:

    Like I said yesterday; facelessbook, iShit, salt and carbs: the perfect recipe for mass sedation.

  18. 3B says:

    #16 gary Well I will comment anyhow!!! 599K and 15,000 in taxes, well it ain’t happening. At that price it will sit and rot. River Edge is a sad story of a once great town that destroyed itself. Many of the residents are in denial, and the ones that are not are leaving. Sad but true.

  19. Juice Box says:

    JJ – “I could fertilize”

    I doubt you would really want the child support.

  20. Brass Balls says:

    That is the beauty of the theory I have the unemployed Irish Guys do it. I am just the breeder.

    Although I did read yesterday that men 14.5 years older than the women make the best babies So maybe I could be called into action. Trouble is I am deadly accurate. Once a girl rubbed against me in a bar and had triplets.

    Juice Box says:
    March 20, 2012 at 9:35 am
    JJ – “I could fertilize”

    I doubt you would really want the child support.

  21. Confused in NJ says:

    With the weather patterns becoming ever more violent, construction may go back to 24/7, just repairing or replacing houses destroyed by the storms..

  22. Anon E. Moose says:

    BB [7];

    The February Contracts being way up year over year is fairly useless data points. Feb 2011 had horrific nasty snowstorms and Feb 2012 he had spring like weather AND 29 DAYS. While Feb 2011 had 28 days.

    That reminds me of a little brouha between the Connecticut revenuers and the indian casinos over slot revenue taxes in 2009. It seems that 2008 remitances were markedly down due to macroeconomic factors, and in their thrist for money the government took particular issue with the February 2009 payment, which was some 4% less than the same month a year earlier. The government was livid, citing that the economy hadn’t gotten that much worse between Feb 2008 and Feb 2009.

    The casino had to remind the state that Feb 2009 was 4% shorter than Feb 2008. Our country is in the best of hands.

  23. chi (8)-

    Something about that plant makes me think it’s much more up jj’s alley.

  24. brian says:

    Real men do not facebook or “tweet” anyhow. They blog on NJrereport.com.

    15.Brass Balls says:
    March 20, 2012 at 9:15 am
    I think that is a great idea. I do check social media before I call a candidate in for an interview. Personally I would like to ban Facebook for employees. Thank god they cant access it at work. Pretty much excessive use of facebook and Iphones rot the brain.

  25. Nicholas says:

    Driving to work today traffic on the highway usually runs at 70 mph now has slowed to 50 mph. No accidents, no congestion, no break lights, just 50-55 mph.

    I’m not worried because of all the news stories that tell me that gas prices are already “priced in” because we have seen higher gas prices before. *Cough* Ahem, I’m pretty sure those economists are idiots if you think that because we have seen higher gas prices before that everything is going to be ok.

    Hold on to your seats boys and girls because it is going to get bumpy.

  26. njescapee says:

    Goldman Sachs Cuts Staff in Annual Review Process
    http://www.cnbc.com/id/46791743

  27. njescapee says:

    are they insane or what?

    3B says:
    March 20, 2012 at 11:10 am
    And to think of all the time I have been talking to myself.

    http://riverdell.patch.com/articles/realtors-new-assessment-will-drive-people-out-of-town

  28. Juice Box says:

    re: #28 – Only been what 100k NYC layoffs in Finance since last year? I know someone from GS that was laid off recently, they are going to have to find a new job in this environment with all those resumes on the street or have to downsize (walk away) for sure. You can’t live in NJ unless you make 500k right JJ?

  29. All Hype says:

    3B (30):

    This quote from the article nicely sums up the tax issue:
    “People are telling me their homes are paid off but they have a mortage on their taxes.”

    Even Mrs Hype, who really wants to own a house, now knows that paying a mortgage is half the battle. Homeowners in NJ will now rent the house from the town via taxes.

    Good for you and Gary for bringing this issue to everyone’s attention.

  30. Brass Balls says:

    So what? I would buy a great house with high taxes, house just has to be cheap. For example look at Jets and Giants PSLs. If they cut the ticket price in half the value of the PSL would great rise. You are paying for right to cheap tickets. But what is in it for Jets or Giants. What do they care about secondary pricing of PSLs.

    The town is the same, raising tax rates will cuase home values to fall. Why should town care you home is worth 100K less cause taxes rose 10K.

    Old saying in 90s in coops every 100K extra a month maint coop should fall in value 10K. Homes dont have a direct thing like that but they should

  31. Brass Balls says:

    As kelly bundy said I dont know if you need 500K but $500,000 would help, plus what would you do with 500 K’s.

    Juice Box says:
    March 20, 2012 at 11:23 am
    re: #28 – Only been what 100k NYC layoffs in Finance since last year? I know someone from GS that was laid off recently, they are going to have to find a new job in this environment with all those resumes on the street or have to downsize (walk away) for sure. You can’t live in NJ unless you make 500k right JJ?

  32. gary says:

    Realtor Eileen Tummino of Weichert Oradell stated that she just sold a home for $532,000 after it was first listed in the $750,000 range.

    “As the taxes go up, the housing values will go down,” Tummino said.

    Any Questions?

  33. Juice Box says:

    re: #29 3B- I am pretty sure your sage advice on the Land of the Unicorns has saved a few brave souls who found their way here to njrereport.com You should be commended for your forseight and prudence.

    FYI, when is nobody left to fight back to defend housing prices and when even the local realtors start complaining like this then the next leg down could be extinction for the Unicorns.

  34. 3B says:

    #32 It gets better, while all of this is going on, the neighboring town (Oradell) is fighting the school funding formula, which currently requires that they pay more to fund the regional schools as their property values are assessed higher. River Edge currently sends over 300 more students to the middle and high school than Oradell.

    The matter is currently with the state, but Oradell plans to go all the way to the state Supreme Court to fight it,

    But that is not all!!! In addition final approval for a 46 unit two bedroom town house development is slated for early April in River Edge; most of these given the horrible location where they will be built will IMO be rentals.

    But that is still not all!!!! In addition there are plans for up wards to another 200 rental/condo projects coming to town, all built in dumpy high traffic areas.

    And the icing on the cake the residents in River Edge are outraged that Oradell is fighting the school funding formula.

    If Oradell wins the battle, the taxes in River Edge will go from insane to absolutely bizarre!!!

  35. seif says:

    7 – Brass Balls

    i read some of your late posts from yesterday. curious…do you consider yourself a miser?

  36. 3B says:

    #36 Juice: Thank you. I did not take any joy in doing it, but I thought prospective buyers had the right to know what is going on in town, rather than listen to local Realtors or clueless family and friends who might live there.

    It was hard and sad, as I really used to love the town, corny as that sounds.

  37. Juice Box says:

    seif – JJ squeaks when he walks, back in the 80s he used to bargain with the squeegy guys and ask the ladies down by the Javitz for two for one discounts.

  38. Mikeinwaiting says:

    3b “If Oradell wins the battle, the taxes in River Edge will go from insane to absolutely bizarre!!!”
    Love that one, just shaking my head after reading the piece you posted.
    A little music to go with the taxes How Bizarre -OMC, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_lJrkeMQhHc

  39. 3B says:

    #41 Mike: You cannnot make this stuff up!!!

  40. Mikeinwaiting says:

    I can not imagine paying what over 1500 a month in taxes, these folks should have been out with the pitchforks about 8 grand ago.

  41. gary says:

    I’ve been trying to see a home on Valley Road and the taxes will go up to $29,000. I just had the buyer’s agent call me today and tell me they are withdrawing from the contract. No one will buy ahome on a 75-by100 lot with $30,000 in taxes. This will kill the real estate market and you will not be able to sell your homes.”

    The next leg down is going to be devastating.

  42. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Gary 44 , 3b the sheep seem to be waking up, to late cow left the barn as predicted here. This to shall come to pass ” The next leg down is going to be devastating.”

  43. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Buy now and be taxed forever……………….

  44. 3B says:

    #44/45 gary/mike: And this in what is supposed to be one of the better towns. And most of it was self-destruction on the part of the residents.

  45. gary says:

    Mikeinwaiting,

    Think about it; a couple buys a house between 2002 and 2009 and now are desperate to sell. The taxes increase beyond tolerance during that period and not only do they get hit with the results of the bubble scam but get annihilated due to the tax theft. Sellers won’t be insulted by lowball offers, they’ll be pleading for it. Physics is amazing! The sum of the forces must equal zero in order for a body to remain in static equilibrium.

  46. seif says:

    40 – thanks. i am curious what he thinks. reading his posts from yesterday (re: living in a small house, squeezing multiple kids into a room, etc.) along with his declaration of “millions in the bank” it sounds like miserly behavior.

  47. Brass Balls says:

    Just cheap. Kinda like my friends Dad, he was a janitor who worked at GE in 60s to 90s and got packaged out around 1999. He worked his way up to running facilities and all the data centers. My buddy recalled a conversation with him when he found out he had several million in Stock. He goes Dad you are sitting in your undershirt on your stoop in Brooklyn drinking Meisterbrau, Why dont you join a country club or buy a Mercedes you are a muli millionair. Dad goes I could not even drink and enjoy a Budwieser knowing it is the same as Meisterbrua but costs more. Am what am I going to do at a country club or a rich neighborhood. I rather just sit on my stoop enjoying my beer.

    I think the fact I was dead broke from birth to 40 makes me not enjoy spending money. I am not a miser, but dollar beer, 99 cent slices, good coupon code, or doing a repair myself brings me joy. Spending money brings me no joy. I would never enjoy an Ipad unless I got it for free. Plus time is an issue. I am rarely home. Except weekends I am gone 13 hours a day at work counting ni commute, buying a big home would be nice for wife and kids. But I am rarely there. I did buy a BMW but problem is I rarely drive. I have BMW three years and only drove it 900 miles. Am I supposed to keep buying new ones? I could I guess join a country club, but when would I go? I only get three weeks vacation and usually I either go somewhere, kids sick or some project I need to do. So in the end I save around 75% of my pay each year. Not intentionally, but I cant buy stuff like a boat, join a country club, etc. as I dont have time. And even when I go out to eat it is take out, ruby tuesdays, friendlys, TGIFs, Diner, with the wife and kids, it does not cost much. Kids dont want to go to Peter Lugars. How much do you spend with three kids meals at Ruby Tuesdays.

    I also hate contractors. Ripping apart a perfectly functional 40 year old bathroom to put a new one in that works identical is a lot of work, stress and I end up losing money. I am going to Atlantis for Spring Break so I am not that much of a miser. But I am staying in the cheapest room and I had a coupon code and I used points for most of airfare! Just dont see the point of a expensive room when I am at park or restaurant.

    seif says:
    March 20, 2012 at 11:34 am
    7 – Brass Balls

    i read some of your late posts from yesterday. curious…do you consider yourself a miser?

  48. gary says:

    Mark my word, a tax reassessment will be mandatory practice before any deal or transaction is closed. Wait… you’ll see.

  49. Happy Renter says:

    [50] JJ living the dream! Couldn’t you work a party-like-a-Kennedy reference into that somehow, just for old time’s sake?

  50. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Gary 48 talk about getting f**ked. This will taint this groups views on housing forever and rightfully so it is consumption.

  51. Happy Renter says:

    [32] “‘People are telling me their homes are paid off but they have a mortage on their taxes.’ … Homeowners in NJ will now rent the house from the town via taxes.”

    No worries — NJ and its municipal government are fiscally rock solid, and the property tax situation in NJ is firmly under control. Nothing but blue skies ahead. Taxes are what they are, but they won’t get any worse.

    Right, guys? Right?

  52. gary (51)-

    Bingo. And, if a tax appeal is in the works, the buyer will tell the seller it must be settled before title closes. There will also be clawback provisions in the purchase contract in case the tax appeal doesn’t work out as advertised.

  53. Anon E. Moose says:

    Gary [48];

    What is going to make the sellers you talk about move? They don’t have to pay their mortgage – because Juice’s jokes aside there’s no real threat that people get disposessed of “their” house despite non-payment; the government will just bailout/buy off the banks ad infinitum to avoid popular revolt. The town or state isn’t about to foreclose on the tax debt if not paid, they just put a lien on teh property

    The worst thing that MIGHT happen is that the state, desperate for money, sells the tax lien at a pennies on the dollar to politically connected insiders. They get to wear the black hat and carry out the foreclosure/eviction, and deal with the first mortgage holder.

  54. seif says:

    so what do you plan to do with the saved funds?

  55. 30 year realtor says:

    My current theory on the huge influx of REO in North Jersey is; In desirable suburban areas 50% of REO sales will be to investors. In less desirable suburban areas 65% of REO sales will be to investors. In urban areas 90% of REO will be sold to investors.

    Normal sellers are going to be hard pressed to compete with REO’s and renovated flips. Banks and flippers will be more aggressive with pricing than the typical homeowner.

    Property taxes are a large issue impacting property values but they still are not the primary negative impact.

    More transactions should be a positive sign, but when the higher transaction level is disproportionately tilted to investor buyers the market is not healthy.

  56. 3B says:

    #56 Anon: There are sellers who want to move, who have no or small mortgages, they will want to get out to keep whatever equity they have. Every year they wait, it will get harder to move, and their equity will continue to decline, so IMO they have an incentive to do it.

  57. Happy Renter says:

    [56] “the government will just bailout/buy off the banks ad infinitum to avoid popular revolt. The town or state isn’t about to foreclose on the tax debt if not paid, they just put a lien on teh property.”

    Not so sure about that — what happens when NJ’s property serfs stop filling the trough at which NJ’s local municipal crime families feed? I don’t think it will be pretty. And I don’t think the Chinese will pay the protection money via Uncle Sam, either.

    “The worst thing that MIGHT happen is that the state, desperate for money, sells the tax lien at a pennies on the dollar to politically connected insiders.”

    (See crime families above.)

  58. 3B says:

    #58 30 Year: Not to disagree with you, but in River Edge property taxes are having a mojor impact.

  59. 3B says:

    #50 JJ I thought only the masses go to Atlantis? I did not think a playa like you would be seen there.

  60. 30 year realtor says:

    #56 Moose – Could you do everyone a favor and limit your comments to subjects you know and understand? There are laws about how often tax sales are conducted. At tax sale auctions bidders bid interest rate, not dollars. There is no discount on the taxes.

  61. Anon E. Moose says:

    3b, Gary:

    People are telling me their homes are paid off but they have a mortage on their taxes. No one will be able to live in this town.

    When this happens to me I tell people that it’s tough being so right, so often… but I can handle it. I hope you can, too.

  62. chicagofinance says:

    You are Antonio Cromartie?????

    Brass Balls says:
    March 20, 2012 at 9:46 am
    Although I did read yesterday that men 14.5 years older than the women make the best babies So maybe I could be called into action. Trouble is I am deadly accurate. Once a girl rubbed against me in a bar and had triplets.

  63. Jill says:

    OK, I have a question for all you real estate guys: Just why is it that property taxes in NJ are so high? It can’t be just public sector contracts, because these have always had generous benefits. It isn’t rich public services, because trash collection and snowplowing is nothing new. What does NJ do with the money that other states don’t? Or is it simply that we are funding other states — you know, those Bible Belt states who say they don’t want government help but that get $1.50 – $2.00 back for every buck they kick in to the feds, while we get 47 cents?

  64. Juice Box says:

    Moose – Franchise Opportunity?

    http://www.kickemoutquick.com/

  65. 1987 Condo Buyer says:

    Gary et al,
    See this 3bdr in Cedar Grove, under $400k, under $6k taxes, I bought similar in 1993, doubled square footage, added Family Room plus master suite…..taxes under 8k

    http://www.realtor.com/realestateandhomes-detail/344-Bowden-Rd_Cedar-Grove_NJ_07009_M54970-76105?ex=NJ549742770

    I think you all need to stop looking in those crazy tax town, there are plenty of towns under 2% market value in taxes.

  66. Ipso facto says:

    Jill – is multiple duplication of services all around.

    Bergen County – roughly 900,000 residents -has more Fire Dept equipment than FDNY for the 5 boroughs. There are 4 county cops – County Police, County Sherrif, Palisades Interstate Parkway Police, & Prosecutor’s Office – Every one makes close to or over 100,000. – 2 Different swat teams, multiple bomb squads – This is for a well off county – Not an inner city hell like Camden. Just read from todays local paper below:

    AFF WRITERS
    The Record

    Think of it as “Family Feud,” Bergen County style. The featured players include County Executive Kathleen Donovan, Sheriff Michael Saudino and County Police Chief and Director of Public Safety Brian Higgins.

    In the past few weeks, through a series of interviews, speeches and raucous public meetings, the internecine conflicts among these officials and others have been laid bare.

    How disagreements developed
    A chronology of the disputes between Bergen County Executive Kathleen Donovan and Sheriff Michael Saudino.

    Nov. 2, 2010

    Kathleen Donovan is elected Bergen County executive and Michael Saudino is elected sheriff after running on the Republican ticket against incumbent Democrats Dennis McNerney and Leo McGuire, respectively.

    March 7, 2011

    In a dispute over the sheriff’s budget, Donovan writes a letter to Saudino accusing him of being “in blatant disregard for all that you promised the citizens of Bergen County” during the 2010 campaign.

    March 10, 2011

    Saudino replies to Donovan in a letter asserting that her office “deliberately employed a strategy not to work with me,” and he rejects a proposed $8.5 million budget cut as baseless. “None of your people have walked the jail; none of your people know the manpower that is required to maintain the security of the courthouse or jail,” Saudino writes.

    May 20, 2011

    Donovan rejects a spending request from the sheriff for three Chevrolet Tahoes and $10,000 in new uniforms for Saudino and his undersheriffs.

    Nov. 1, 2011

    Saudino criticizes a panel appointed by Donovan to study county law enforcement, saying its agenda is to protect the county Police Department. “Your purported committee’s lack of experience and its admitted political bias is glaring,” Saudino writes to committee Chairman J. Fletcher Creamer.

    March 8, 2012

    An attempted meeting between Donovan and Saudino ends abruptly when he objects to the presence of Jeanne Baratta, Donovan’s chief of staff. The sheriff said he had been expecting a one-on-one meeting. “This is total disrespect for me, and I am tired of it,” he says.

    March 14, 2012

    At an Editorial Board meeting at The Record, Donovan accuses Saudino of using a vulgarity to refer to her while he was talking to someone else about one year earlier. “I don’t trust him,” she explains. “So I won’t meet with him privately.” Saudino denies using the vulgar term.

    March 15, 2012

    In her annual State of the County speech, Donovan blasts Saudino for negotiating a contract with sheriff’s deputies without including her labor negotiation team. She contends the contract would increase salaries by $10.5 million over four years. She calls it “reckless spending that I can assure you I will not be signing.” Saudino calls Donovan’s claims “grossly inaccurate and untrue.”

    March 19, 2012

    At an Editorial Board meeting at The Record, Saudino describes confronting County Police Chief Brian Higgins about the chief’s claims he overheard the sheriff using a vulgarity to refer to Donovan. “Brian, you’re worse than a rat. You’re a lying rat,” the sheriff recalls telling Higgins about a year ago.

    — John C. Ensslin
    Donovan, who shared a Republican ticket with Saudino in 2010, says she no longer trusts the sheriff because he allegedly used a vulgar term to describe her. Saudino said Monday that he called Higgins “a lying rat” to his face after he learned that the chief told Donovan about the vulgarity, which he denies saying.

    Beyond he-said-she-said, Donovan and Saudino also are at loggerheads over the next contract for sheriff’s officers. She says the contract negotiated by Saudino would cost taxpayers too much money. He says her estimates are wildly off the mark.

    In the latest salvo, Saudino said publicly for the first time Monday, at an Editorial Board meeting at The Record, that the Bergen County Police Department should be absorbed into the Sheriff’s Office. That stands in stark contrast to Donovan’s belief that the county police will play a primary role in helping local police departments control their own costs.

    The skirmishes come at a critical time for the county, where issues of cost and efficiency have taken center stage. Hearings on the budgets for the county’s three law enforcement agencies await scheduling, pending the findings of a committee formed by Donovan to examine opportunities for consolidation. These hearings must be held before the freeholders can approve a final budget — which will set the county tax rate for the year.

    But the combatants all say they don’t think the hostilities are hampering county business.

    Saudino and Higgins, in separate interviews, described the infighting as “distractions” that have not affected their operations.

    “We are functioning,” said Jeanne Baratta, Donovan’s chief of staff. “There’s a lot of other stuff going on besides this petty stuff.”

    During the 90-minute interview Monday, Saudino stressed that his proposed merger of the county police and Sheriff’s Office could be done without layoffs and that incoming county officers would be allowed to keep their ranks and salaries.

    “What’s the difference what patch is worn to provide services to the county?” Saudino said. “I believe for what the county pays in tax dollars to keep the county Police Department up and running, we do not get back enough in terms of service to the public. This is no slight to them — they’re good police officers. It’s the agency. The agency has outgrown itself. The times have outgrown it. The economy has outgrown this police department.”

    Donovan explained her position during her own 90-minute interview with the editorial board last week.

    She said the county police are uniquely situated to cooperate with local police departments to potentially streamline services and save money, which could help control burdensome property taxes. If enough local departments want to contract with the county police for services, Donovan said, she could even see a possibility that the Bergen force could grow.

    And Higgins on Monday said merging the county police with the Sheriff’s Office doesn’t make financial sense.

    “It goes to the point we’ve been making before — if you’re going to keep all the ranks, the officers, their salaries — if the goal is not to streamline or cut costs, then we’re just talking about a shift of power,” Higgins said in an interview.

    Saudino’s call for a merger is in line with some of the recommendations by Guidepost Solutions, a New York-based consulting firm that was commissioned by the outgoing administration in 2010 to conduct a $623,000 study on consolidating redundant aspects of county law enforcement. Guidepost’s primary finding was that the county police should be downsized, or eliminated, at an annual savings of as much as $17.7 million.

    In May, the county attempted to stop Policemen’s Benevolent Association 134, the union representing the sheriff’s officers, from negotiating a contract exclusively with the sheriff, as has been the practice for nearly 20 years. The county filed an unfair-labor charge against the PBA, and the sheriff opted to intervene in the case, according to state records. On July 18, the state Public Employment Relations Commission ruled that the contract negotiations did not need to involve the county executive, and the sheriff subsequently negotiated a new four-year contract with the PBA.

    This contract calls for officers at the highest step on the salary guide — about 65 percent of the force, or 280 people — to receive 2 percent pay increases for each year over the next four years, said John McCann, counsel for the Sheriff’s Office. Only those officers at the highest step will receive raises, retroactive to Jan. 1, 2011, McCann said.

    Half of the officers at that step are expected to retire by 2014, Saudino said.

    McCann estimated the proposed contract would raise total compensation by about 1.18 percent a year, or roughly $500,000. He and Saudino said Donovan’s claim that the contract would cost the county $10.5 million is inaccurate.

    Donovan’s office on Monday evening issued an analysis of the new contract that depicts $10.5 million in costs over four years from proposed increases in salary, funeral and personal leave pay, holiday pay and sick time buybacks.

    County Administrator Ed Trawinski said McCann is wrong that the law gives the sheriff the right to unilaterally negotiate a labor contract.

    “Why wouldn’t you want to have the county executive sitting at the bargaining table?” Trawinski asked.

    He added that the administration will refuse to place the sheriff’s contract on the Freeholder Board agenda for Wednesday. The matter was pulled from the agenda of the freeholders’ March 7 meeting.

    This sets the stage for another conflict — McCann said that if the freeholders do not vote on the contract, they face a potential lawsuit from PBA 134.

  67. Ipso facto says:

    By the way, forgot to add that of the 70 Towns – 68 have their own full time/some part time 7am-11p police department. Add in each town has a Board of Education + A County Board of Education.

  68. Libtard and the City says:

    Jill(66):

    If I were to guess, the problem is two-fold.

    First, the unions in this state have been promised benefits and salaries that are completely unsustainable, unobtainable and quite frankly, undeserved. These promises have been made in exchange for the union voting block. It remains the way it does since it’s political suicide to go against the unions in such a true blue state.

    Second, we have too many small towns with almost no regionalization. Our counties take up 20% of our property tax dollars and they really serve no purpose. The courts/jails/park maintenance/county road maintenance could be managed at a combination of the state and local level. At the local level, many towns should merge with other towns. The problem is, everyone thinks their own sh1t don’t stink, but their neighbor’s sh1t smells like the elephant exhibit at the Safari at Six Flags on steamy July day. Hence, home rule rules again.

    All public workers salaries are public as are their benefits. It takes a little digging, but you can always find the data uploaded somewhere. I beg you to find another town with a similar population to yours in a different state than NJ and look up salaries and benefits of the teachers, the policemen and the firemen. Then compare the number of public workers there are compared to the state’s population. You will find your answer.

  69. Libtard and the City says:

    87 Condo/Gary:

    Cedar Grove is really a great place to live and a taxpayer’s dream. Their taxes have stayed low due to a combination of having an older populace which votes down the budgets and the Newark Reservoir which pays a healthy chunk of taxes to the town. Even with the rejected school budgets, their schools are actually pretty good. Drive over the hill for culture or for the train.

    If you don’t have kids, Clifton is a good place to live as well, though much more urban in many parts.

  70. News to the parasites: your pension ain’t gonna be there.

    Learn to love Friskies.

  71. Hilarity will ensue as the stiffed pensioners take up pitchforks and move on Orin Kramer’s house.

  72. Libtard and the City says:

    And the location of that listing is in a super quiet neighborhood (except when the volunteer fire alarm goes off).

  73. Brass Balls says:

    I cant belive Cedar Grove is a real town. It does not look that far out. How do you get to work. Is there a train, or is this a bus town?

  74. Anon E. Moose says:

    Juice [67];

    Thoughts, in no particular order:

    Is he old enough to enter a bar, much less sit for one? Get a suit that fits, and spare us the tough-guy pose at the end.

    “Kick ’em Out” (on whatever level) as a business model may work in a rural western state (like UT), but in a bleeding heart blue state like NY/NJ (~3 years from default to foreclosure, and climbing by the day) or MD, you’re not getting any traction.

    Besides, even if it were viable in the short-medium term, once the foreclosure pig passes through the snake, there’s no business growth. Might as well open a restaurant; most of them all fail in <3 yrs. too.

  75. 1987 Condo Buyer says:

    #76…JJ as an ex-Staten Islander, the commute to NYC is significantly easier in most of NJ. You have several options. NJT Bus 195 actually goes by my block into Port Authority. However, a 5 minute drive to Willowbrook Park and Ride gets me on an express bus and into PA in about 25-30 minutes. Home is worse but I work out of house. You also have option to take train from Montclair State, mid town direct.

    We moved here when both my spouse and I worked for Pru in Roseland. That was a 12 minute drive in.

  76. Brass Balls says:

    The whole bus thing worries me. Last bus to NJ from Wall Street on most lines is six pm. Then you have to go to Port. Other thing it you have to run home early for an emergency or just take a half day the bus schedule is very infrequent. The commute of my staff who took the bus was not that bad. They all claimed about the lack of early, late and miday busses and traffic such as Friday in the summer. Most said they would rather have a regular one hour 15 minute commute on a train with frequent service than one hour on a bus. Plus some buses like the one from Edision to Wall Street has no bathroom and with Occupy folks got dicey with traffic. Express bus to Port in 30 minutes sound pretty good. In general since 2001 there are a lot less busses that go into downtown.

    1987 Condo Buyer says:
    March 20, 2012 at 2:16 pm
    #76…JJ as an ex-Staten Islander, the commute to NYC is significantly easier in most of NJ. You have several options. NJT Bus 195 actually goes by my block into Port Authority. However, a 5 minute drive to Willowbrook Park and Ride gets me on an express bus and into PA in about 25-30 minutes. Home is worse but I work out of house. You also have option to take train from Montclair State, mid town direct.

    We moved here when both my spouse and I worked for Pru in Roseland. That was a 12 minute drive in.

  77. Brass Balls says:

    I am a psuedo celeb in SI as my father was the first person to drive across Verazzano Narrows bridge. The guy in back of limo thought he was first till he realized my dad who was driving actually beat him across the line. He may have also been the last person to cross the bridge without paying a toll.

    1987 Condo Buyer says:
    March 20, 2012 at 2:16 pm
    #76…JJ as an ex-Staten Islander, the commute to NYC is significantly easier in most of NJ. You have several options. NJT Bus 195 actually goes by my block into Port Authority. However, a 5 minute drive to Willowbrook Park and Ride gets me on an express bus and into PA in about 25-30 minutes. Home is worse but I work out of house. You also have option to take train from Montclair State, mid town direct.

    We moved here when both my spouse and I worked for Pru in Roseland. That was a 12 minute drive in.

  78. 1987 Condo Buyer says:

    #79, agreed, Wall street is best accessed from SI, Bklyn, QN, Long Island.
    NJ has good access to Mid-Town

  79. Nicholas says:

    Anon,

    I saw the website, but didn’t listen to the smug, close shaved little man that was talking. I don’t believe that they were really targeting forclosures but rather dead beat renters. I can only assume that those who couldn’t sell their homes are now first time landlords and dont have the faintest idea (or balls) to kick out a renter. I imagined that these guys would remove your renter, as quickly as possible, and then persue them for past rent until they regretted not paying you.

    I thought it was a pretty good idea. I didn’t delve further to understand the cost but a good Property Manager can do most of that stuff for you and probably cheaper than a lawyer. Small claims court might also be better if they don’t owe you too much money.

  80. Juice Box says:

    If you move to Cedar Grove you will need to like water sports like canoeing.

  81. Anon E. Moose says:

    Nicholas [82];

    The only leverage a landlord has is the ignorance of his renter. The system is defninitely stacked against the landlord, but only if the renter knows how to play the game (or lawyers up). Its a major risk factor that amateur landlords rarely phathom to its fullest extent. Six months of no rent + damage bills eclipsed by one month’s security deposit + lawyers fees + a judgement-proof tenant == Real Bad ROI. Best defense a landlord has is rigorous screening in advance.

  82. 1987 Condo Buyer says:

    #83…not sure what you mean by that. Little Falls has had some flooding issue along Passaic, but not in CG

  83. Anon E. Moose says:

    Redux [84];

    “eclipsed by” — scratch that, reverse it.

  84. Brass Balls says:

    Some favorites from recent resumes I have reviewed.

    Passed the “Barista” qualification test and honored with the title of “master of coffee”
     Promoted new products for the company through creative initiatives such as designing promotion board and introducing new products to the customers

    • Coordinated and oversaw private clientele needs through the assessment that focused on effectively meeting the clients’ beauty requirements.

  85. grim says:

    80 – post of the day

  86. Libtard and the City says:

    Yeah. CG doesn’t flood except perhaps along the brook on Little Falls Road.

  87. 1987 Condo Buyer says:

    #89…Wow, #80….I am on the search of the Advance aryticle in the meantime:

    http://www.nytimes.com/learning/general/onthisday/big/1121.html#article

  88. A.West says:

    Jill,
    Don’t forget that every Abbot District kid entitles the state miseducation system to spend over $20,000 on pretending to educate the uneducatable. The stupider they get, the more money they get to spend.

    New Jersey has a total private sector labor force of 3.2 million. It has a public sector labor force of 0.62 million. (according to NJBIA.)
    The NJ leeches must think that they’ve latched onto a huge bull that will hardly notice the drain. Unfortunately for them, it’s more like a sick hamster. $500mn more down the drain? That’s only another $150/yr taken from the productive to the perpetually failing. Camden and Newark combined were spending about $1.5bn, $23k/student, to produce massive failure. So everyone in NJ with a private sector job is already paying on average $1,500 per year to support this institutional failure.

    Also there’s this:
    Steven Malanga

    New Jersey’s Ruin

    The state’s leaders seem determined to drive it off a cliff.

    19 August 2008

    Adam Smith once wrote that there’s a “great deal of ruin in a nation,” by which he meant that it takes an awful lot of bungling by political leaders to bring down a powerful and prosperous state. Today, New Jersey pols are giving Smith’s thesis quite a test drive. They are steering the Garden State toward ruin at an astonishing pace, and no amount of bad economic news seems capable of deterring them.

    The latest indication of the state’s decline is the rapid deterioration of its newspapers, which rely heavily on the local economy and thus are good barometers of a community’s conditions. New Jersey’s biggest newspaper, the Star-Ledger, once one of America’s most profitable papers, is cutting 20 percent of its workforce because it’s losing more than $30 million annually, while the Bergen Record is closing its Hackensack headquarters and looking to move its newsroom and other departments to smaller facilities. Six Gannett newspapers in the state are cutting jobs and planning early retirements for their employees.

    Though Jersey’s papers are to an extent suffering the afflictions—like the flow of advertising dollars to the Internet—that plague the newspaper industry generally, they are also being hammered by the state’s considerable economic woes. The Star-Ledger’s owner, Advance Publications, says that the paper is doing far worse than the company’s papers in other markets. That’s not surprising, because Jersey never recovered as did the rest of the nation (New York included) from the recession of 2002. Only government employment soared in the state from 2003 through 2007, while private job rolls grew a meager 1.8 percent, mostly through the addition of low-wage service employment. In 2006, when the country was in the middle of an economic boom, New Jersey, virtually alone among the states, faced a crushing budget deficit of $4.5 billion that prompted an embarrassing shutdown of state government.

    Jersey’s decline has been rapid and astonishing. Back in the 1960s, one study judged it among the country’s ten most business-friendly states because of its light tax burden, which allowed it to attract a steady stream of businesses and residents from New York. Though there were occasionally signs of trouble over the years—like the pension shenanigans of Governor Christie Whitman, in which government shirked its long-term obligations—the state’s real decline started with the election of Jim McGreevey and a Democratic-controlled legislature in 2001.

    In the middle of a recession, McGreevey and the legislature raised taxes and fees an astonishing 33 times to raise $3.6 billion. The state also passed a heap of labor-friendly, antibusiness laws that rapidly worsened conditions. The McGreevey administration hammered an executive at one of the state’s biggest employers, Federated Department Stores, for announcing that the new taxes would force the company to reevaluate future growth plans in Jersey; is it any surprise that one reason the state’s newspapers are suffering today, according to an ad executive, is retrenchment of local department stores? In 2002, the Beacon Hill Institute rated Jersey 26th among the states in overall competitiveness, but by 2004 Jersey had plummeted to 44th, the largest decline of any state, noted the institute, which also ranked Jersey’s government performance next to last among the states—in case you were wondering what prompted the decline.

    Yet Jersey’s leaders have learned little. In 2006, the state enacted several billion dollars of new taxes. And Governor Jon Corzine recently signed into law one of the most astonishingly anti-growth and simply foolish (there is really no other word for it) pieces of state legislation in memory. The new law requires towns hosting private-sector commercial or residential development to build subsidized affordable housing as well. Towns say that they will have to tax developers and raise property taxes to pay for this. If you knew nothing about New Jersey, you might assume that the state was prospering and that its developers were rolling in money. But the state’s commercial vacancy rate is a whopping 19 percent (by contrast, Manhattan’s is about 7 percent), and prospects for filling up that empty space are slim, considering that a recent national survey of corporate executives ranked Jersey as one of the least attractive places to expand. A state in desperate need of business just made doing business even more expensive.

    Given the constant stream of bad news, why has reform been so difficult? In part because the kind of big-government, tax-consuming policies that are doing so much damage have also given more and more residents a stake in the current system. State and local government employment is among the highest in the country on a per-capita basis, having increased by 15 percent from 2000 through 2006 alone. Hundreds of thousands of current and retired public employees aren’t about to vote for changing the system, for fear it would eliminate their perks and benefits.

    Meanwhile, the state’s recent tax increases have fallen entirely on upper-income residents. Those earning more than $200,000 a year, who account for just 4.9 percent of households filing tax returns, are paying 60 percent of all personal income taxes. Jersey has even managed to make its onerous property taxes progressive by instituting a means-tested rebate program: higher-income residents don’t get cash back.

    The effect of all this is to make New Jersey a place where just a few businesses and residents pay the freight while so many others are on the public dole, in one way or another, that reform becomes virtually impossible. Of course, such a system cannot sustain itself very long before collapsing, as some businesses balk at expansion, others (like the newspapers) shrivel, and declining opportunities stifle job growth. That’s why Jersey now lurches from crisis to crisis.

    The question for New Yorkers is whether their own politicians learn anything from the mess across the Hudson. While for years people pointed to New Jersey’s business environment as something New York should emulate, the state now stands as a cautionary tale. A few years ago, when asked about New York’s high tax rates, former governor George Pataki was quick to point out that Jersey had recently raised its own taxes. That was the wrong answer, because businesses and residents chased out of Jersey by high taxes aren’t about to come to New York. Rather, Jersey’s decline is likely to push businesses out of the region completely. More ominously, New York, with its dysfunctional politics, may not be immune to Jersey’s fate. Only Wall Street and Gotham’s international tourist appeal have insulated the state from its neighbor’s woes—but with Wall Street now in crisis, New York may face the prospect of a Jersification of its own budget and economy.

    Steven Malanga is senior editor of City Journal and a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute.

  89. 3b says:

    If smart money is betting on housing I wonder why the magazine is called smart money?

  90. gary says:

    I’m still waiting for a pony. Where’s my f*cking pony!

  91. Brass Balls says:

    Hey what is 15 and 30 year mortgage at now. Ten year tresury rates are up for almost two weeks straight. Good thing Feb was good weather when rates were low. march wont be as fun

  92. njescapee says:

    AWest, I saw the writing on the wall for NJ in the early 2000s. We planned and executed our move accordingly. Florida is attracting a lot of business from high tax / cost states. The Miami area is booming and it aint just guns. Quality of life is pretty good and as a follow-up to yesterday’s thread Gen Y has been having a great time partying in south Florida. just saying.

  93. gary says:

    Mike,

    I gotta move to Poland for a pony? Grim, is this true? Does every boy and girl in Poland get a pony? In Italy, all my grandparents got was purple feet! ;)

  94. chicagofinance says:

    Downtown has good access from Northeastern Monmouth because of all the boats….(e.g., Middletown was town with the most dead on 9/11)

    1987 Condo Buyer says:
    March 20, 2012 at 2:34 pm
    #79, agreed, Wall street is best accessed from SI, Bklyn, QN, Long Island.
    NJ has good access to Mid-Town

  95. chicagofinance says:

    Jill: also note that even keeping everything the same, the gold healthcare benefits are damned expensive; most private employees have transitioned from full coverage, to having to pay into plans several thousand a year for benefits that have been slowly reduced. Think about the NJEA balking against Christie to have to pay ANYTHING…let alone for a vastly superior plan. Whatever you see as someone’s salary in the public sector, you can tack on between $15,000-$40,000 for the fully loaded value with all the benefits. THAT is why headcount matters. Even a scrub making $15,000 on a fully loaded basis can cost over $40,000.

  96. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    FWIW, the Deplumes are also eyeing the exit.

  97. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Nom run hard run fast, I have 4 years till last one out of school then I’m gone. Having sold my two already (05,06) and renting since I see no reason to cut my own throat.

  98. mikey (103)-

    We’ll always have Hot Dog Johnny’s and Restaurant Latour (cough…gack…uck).

  99. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Meat 104 never been to either but I would like to go to Hot Dog Johnny’s. They would not know good food up here if it bit them in the a**, Latour is supposed to be top shelf, never mind I’ll pass & cook it myself.

  100. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    UMASS!!! GOING TO THE GARDEN!

  101. Juice Box says:

    Re: # 100 – Chi I am channelling JJ her but those boats are getting empty. No hard stats but I know a few that won’t be showing up at Belford anymore.

  102. Juice Box says:

    Re: 101 – until the Dem gets control of NJ and reinstates the Bennies. My realtives and friends in NJ say that will happen. Do they save for the rainy day? Nope.”..

  103. Juice Box says:

    Re: 103 – Mike where are you going to go?

  104. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Juice 110 do not know will look for work in less expensive states. Really did not start any serious research have four years , who knows by then. There is always I want cold climate wife wants a warm state debate to be settled! Yea I know, I lose.

  105. caljn says:

    Re: yet you continually post on a NJ centric blog. Interesting.

    South FL is pretty well jam packed and summers are brutal. Quality of life? Really?
    And I don’t recommend raising a family and schooling children in FL. or Tx or any other red state claiming low “business friendly” taxes.
    You know I’m right.

  106. mikey (105)-

    Could also just come up to the Mohawk House in Sussex, swill ale until I see double, then stagger to the closest motel to sleep it off. I like that place.

  107. Mikeinwaiting says:

    calnj I gather you are talking to me. I hate FLA if you read my earlier post 103 waiting for last one to get out of school then I go. NJ born & bred Hudson County, just time to go. “And I don’t recommend raising a family and schooling children” and neither do I, but we could do it right a hell of a lot cheaper, you know I’m right.

  108. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Meat 113 Kettle & I go there about every three months for GTG you are always welcome.

  109. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Meat any time you want to meet there let me know, Kettle will most likely join us.

  110. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Scotch going down well tonight, first drink in a week fu*king busy.

  111. njescapee says:

    MIW, are you up near the Stanhope House? We used to make the trek all the way up there from Hillsborough for some great blues shows every so often. Place was kinda funky back in the 80s.

  112. relo says:

    103: Mike,

    Operating under same timeframe. Just hope I can hang on to my current gig until then. Showed kids a couple of different areas of the country and they can make up their own minds. I’ve done the high floor park view and much prefer the Gulf. Like Eddie said “Saw things so much clearer…once you were in my rear view mirror”.

  113. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [116] mike,

    Meat. Road trip?

  114. Mikeinwaiting says:

    njescapee 118 No , about 40 min north think like 5 min from NY border.

  115. Mikeinwaiting says:

    relo 119 good luck ,go for it.

  116. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Nom 120 , you guys come on up, teeth are optional !

  117. Essex says:

    Teef. It’s not teeth. It’s “teef”….

  118. caljn says:

    114 Mike, actually I was referring to 97 escaper, endlessly trying to validate his moves by convincing everyone else to bail as well.

    I have been thru just about every state in the country and lived in a few of them, aftering growing up in NJ, currently in LA for a job. Truth is Jrz stacks up pretty darn well in the scheme of things. I’ll return eventually…

  119. A.West says:

    caljn,
    I went to public school in FL where taxes are low. Graduated with plenty of kids scoring in the top few percentile of SAT, etc, and went to good colleges. I know lots of Chinese kids in GA paying low taxes, their kids get perfect SAT’s and go to Ivy League schools easier than kids in Blue Ribbon NJ high paid union schools, because they bring geographic diversity.
    NJ teachers unions like to create a myth that high taxes brings high quality education. It’s a lie. Student scores correlate mostly to parent intelligence and income. Abbot Schools spend more than anyone but crack babies don’t take to book learnin.

  120. Clarissa says:

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