July home sales at 10 month high

From Forbes:

July Existing Home Sales Hit Highest Pace Of 2014

Sales of previously-owned homes in July rose for the fourth straight month, hitting their highest pace in 2014, according to data released Tuesday by the National Association of Realtors.

Sales of existing-homes–which include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops–climbed 2.4% to an annual (seasonally adjusted) pace of 5.15 million in July. That tops June’s downwardly revised annual (seasonally adjusted) pace of 5.03 million and is the highest rate in nine months.

July’s numbers are good news for housing after a sluggish start this year, when the market was weighed down by winter storms, underwater mortgages, tight inventory, and rising mortgage rates. However, the numbers can’t match housing’s 2013 hot streak: last month’s pace was 4.3% below the July 2013 (last year’s peak), when the pace stood at 5.38 million units.

Still, the slowed pace of price gains is helping to normalize the market. And as housing prices rise, more people put their homes on the market, easing inventory levels. “The number of houses for sale is higher than a year ago and tamer price increases are giving prospective buyers less hesitation about entering the market,” said Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist. “More people are buying homes compared to earlier in the year and this trend should continue with interest rates remaining low and apartment rents on the rise.”

Existing-home sales data is an important bellwether of the housing market, since the vast majority of homes are resales rather than new construction. At the end of July there were 2.37 million existing homes available for sale, a 5.5-month supply at the current sales pace. (A six-month supply is considered a healthy market.) Unsold inventory is 5.8% higher than a year ago.

For now, home prices are rising at a slower rate than last year’s breakneck pace. In July the median price of an existing-home was $222,900, 4.9% over the median price one year earlier. Year-over-year, home prices have now risen for 29 consecutive months.

Sales pace and price level varied widely by region in July. In the Northeast, the pace stayed flat from June to July but was 9.9% below the rate one year earlier. The median price in this region was $273,600 in July, 2.4% above the price in July 2013.

Distressed homes (foreclosures and short sales) accounted for just 9% of home sales in July, down from 15% one year earlier. That marks the first time the market share of distressed properties has dropped to single-digits since NAR started tracking them in October 2008.

The share of first-time buyers in the housing market rose slightly in July (for the second straight month) to 29%, but remains historically low.

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108 Responses to July home sales at 10 month high

  1. grim says:

    From Bloomberg:

    Apartment Construction Ominously Nears 25-Year High

    If you live in a major U.S. city and look out over the skyline, chances are good you’ll see construction cranes. Lots of them. Only twice in the past 25 years have new apartment buildings been going up as fast as they are right now. That’s not necessarily a good omen. The first time, in February 2000, was right before the dot-com bubble burst. The second time, January 2006, came right before the housing bubble burst. Now we learn that builders broke ground on 423,000 new multifamily units in July, right before … who knows what?

    Monthly building data released earlier this week by the Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development showed that new home construction overall posted strong gains in July, with the highest number of new home starts in eight months. The comeback largely manifested in an uptick in apartment buildings with five or more units, which saw an almost 50 percent increase in new starts in July over a year earlier. By comparison, starts on single-family homes were up only about 10 percent over the same period.

    That’s part of the reason that the Northeast, with its large, dense cities, saw the biggest monthly increase, up 44 percent from June. That matches the analysis by Trulia (TRLA) Chief Economist Jed Kolko, who found that among metro areas, Boston and New York are building more than in the past.

    In the 25 years since 1989, the U.S. has started building at an average annual rate of about 248,000 new multifamily units. By that measure, our current 423,000 is a veritable boom. Still, construction in the the U.S. has come at a far faster pace in the past. During the 25 years leading up to 1989, builders broke ground on 467,000 units each year, on average. In the early 1970s, the rate briefly hit 1 million new units a year.

  2. Pack the housing dirty bomb with more tacks and medical waste.

    Should be great good fun when it detonates.

  3. Unsustainable “rally”. The necronomy is creating more debt monkeys than people who can afford to buy housing. All the plankton are dead.

    “The share of first-time buyers in the housing market rose slightly in July (for the second straight month) to 29%, but remains historically low.”

  4. Toxic Crayons says:

    Charles C. Johnson ‏@ChuckCJohnson 3h
    Imagine how bad it would be if we had bombed Assad as the neocons & “Dr” O’Bagy & @SenJohnMcCain had wanted. #ISIS would have taken #Syria.

  5. Toxic Crayons says:

    Impassioned woman confronts McCain over his warmongering in Syria during Town Hall Meeting

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ECXwp0x7tW8

  6. joyce says:

    The DA in the Shaneen Allen case is the same one that gave the pre-trial plea deal to Ray Rice.

  7. Toxic Crayons says:

    That was established early on….her lawyer, seeing she was being railroaded and that they were making an example of her sarcastically asked the judge “can she just have a two game suspension?”

  8. Juice Box says:

    Look at meeeeeee!

    Hipster does ALS challenge with Gowanus canal water.

    http://diehipster.wordpress.com/

  9. Check this one, joyce. TPTB won’t stop until the populace is totally subjugated:

    “Communist China. Nazi Germany. Cambodia. Guatemala. Uganda. The list goes on and on. Pacification of the citizens is almost always a prerequisite to totalitarianism.

    There have been a lot of attempts to disarm, or at least partially disarm, people in the US throughout history as well.

    Each time there’s a major shooting somewhere, the chant to ban firearms grows louder.

    But the latest proposal is especially telling.

    H.R. 5344 is a bill currently going through Congress that would ban the purchase of body armor.

    Violation would carry CRIMINAL penalties, including up to ten years in prison.”

    http://www.sovereignman.com/trends/congress-proposes-new-law-prohibiting-body-armor-in-the-land-of-the-free-14877/

  10. grim says:

    Isn’t owning a bullet proof fest illegal right now?

  11. grim says:

    Went straight into the blacklist.

  12. Toxic Crayons says:

    Young Hipsters take over residences in an old bottlecap factory in Baltimore.

    http://www.slate.com/blogs/behold/2014/08/21/alex_wein_photographs_residents_of_baltimore_s_copycat_building.html

    Are these the people we’re so worried are moving to cities and not buying SFH’s? Somehow, I feel less worried.

  13. grim says:

    Whoever thought being homeless would be cool. Is that f*cking Che? That’s some next level shit.

  14. anon (the good one) says:

    “WHAT’S REALLY DRIVING INVERSIONS
    Chief executives have complained for years about the United States corporate tax code. This summer, the issue reached a near boiling point as many big American companies have sought to buy smaller foreign rivals so they could renounce their United States citizenship and reincorporate abroad, a move known as an inversion, Andrew Ross Sorkin writes in the DealBook column. He adds: “Again and again, we hear that these deals are being driven by an effort to make our companies more competitive globally and that unless we ‘reform’ our tax system,” we will lose business to foreign rivals.

    “It is a compelling narrative. But it may be wrong,”
    Mr. Sorkin writes. A recent study makes the argument that the United States tax code is not impeding global competitiveness and in fact, the opposite is true. The United States may have a corporate tax rate of 35 percent, but the paper contends that the American tax code’s loopholes result in effective tax rates that make United States corporations more competitive than their rivals overseas. Instead, what may be driving companies to inversions is the money they have abroad and don’t want to bring back to the United States despite protestations by many chief executives that they wish they could.”

  15. Juice Box says:

    Lot s of artist lofts in hoboken just like that

  16. Swap hipsters for ISIS prisoners.

  17. 1987 Condo says:

    Next thing they will ban are RPGs…

  18. painhrtz - whatever says:

    Sadly enough Clot I am totally on board with that suggestion. Every time I see one of those idiots I am reminded of the bohemian patchouli stank moron who prattled on about constructing barriers along the AC expressway to save turtles. First guy I ever saw with a long board skateboard and the inflated sense of irony. God we hated the proto hipster f*ck

  19. Fast Eddie says:

    Meat [3],

    The plankton aren’t necessarily dead, the few that qualify can’t justify a $60,000 down payment for a sh1thole of a house on the Hawthorne/Paterson border.

  20. Fast Eddie says:

    Now, the qualified seller? They’re pretty much dead.

  21. joyce says:

    Police report, charging documents, plea agreement, and early release from probation notice for Todd Doering, a Pennsylvania man who was charged with illegal possession of a licensed gun in New Jersey
    http://www.scribd.com/doc/237252294/Documents-on-the-Todd-Doering-Case

    same exact situation as Shaneen Allen, was given probation (still criminal record)… but easier to expunge in 5 years I assume. that being said, different prosecutor

  22. Ragnar says:

    16, cool photos
    I live the photo of Che hugging a big bird doll on the couch. Kind of like how Anon hugs his Obama-faced man doll while watching MSNBC in bed.

    Other highlights:
    The Asian chick with a sign for “overwhelming guilt” apparently for not cleaning up her room and not being cuter.

    The guy “Ebbie” who is preparing to audition for a part in the next Scooby Doo movie by looking at his 1960s vinyl collection and saying “groovy”.

  23. Ragnar says:

    Grim,
    I forgot to pipe up yesterday. What’s your take on Somerset County? Houses in the $1 to $2mn range seem to keep on chugging in the top towns, I suppose thanks to the Fed’s asset inflation policies.

    To my amazement, 5 Caruso Ct. in Bridgewater finally sold! for 1.7mn
    http://www.zillow.com/homedetails/5-Caruso-Ct-Bridgewater-NJ-08807/39865374_zpid/
    I’m really curious about who had the guts or bad taste to buy that house.
    Are you able to find out?

  24. All Hype says:

    Pain (22):

    One time in college one of these 2o year old proto-hipster douchbags was skateboarding up and down the stret yelling and cursing. My buddy told him to stop the foul language. The douchbage now start getting into it with my buddy. My buddy knocks him off the skateboard and tells him to get his mommy to come back and retrieve his board. They guy left and never came back.

    Memories…..

  25. anon (the good one) says:

    talk about jealousy. you guys are too fat to wear skinny jeans

  26. Ragnar says:

    Like not live the photo of Che. I don’t have a big bird doll or a beard.

  27. painhrtz - whatever says:

    Hype considering where you went to school surprised the locals did not take care of it first. We left ours in Forsythe national wildlife refuge during a field class because we hated him and the professor. When we got back to Stockton we told the professor he was not with us and she had to drive back to get the idiot. Was a cold November day on those Marshes. Good times

    going back to the Baltimore article WTF is with the le$bian fur trapper convention. Seriously, I have hunted and done some trapping since I was 10 and I don’t have an animal pelt. A taxidermist friend has less and his cabin looks liek he North American Animal wing of the Smithsonian. Everyone featured in that article punchable.

  28. All Hype says:

    “talk about jealousy. you guys are too fat to wear skinny jeans”

    Guys who wear skinny jeans as adults were the ones who got swirlies, atomic wedgies and thrown in lockers in high school by guys like Pain.

    Love the picture of the guy sitting in his Jan Brady bedroom. I was looking for the Tiger Beat magazines in the photo.

  29. Comrade Nom Deplume, a.k.a. Captain Justice says:

    Laws for thee but not for me. or, as our putative, soon to be anointed, next President would say “what difference does it make?”

    http://www.cnn.com/2014/08/21/justice/bergdahl-prisoner-exchange/index.html?hpt=hp_t4

  30. Comrade Nom Deplume, a.k.a. Captain Justice says:

    [34] redux

    Great bit of sophistry from the article. An admission that laws were broken but “we didn’t do anything illegal.”

    The Inner Party members must be proud. The Ministry of Truth has done its job well.

  31. Libturd in Union says:

    Those photos were all so disturbing.

  32. Libturd in Union says:

    Thank you Obama. What was supposed to be more affordable health care for all has not surprisingly morphed into coverage for those who used to not have it to be paid for by those who always did. The major health insurers appreciate the huge increase in business.

    ——————-

    UnitedHealth Group Inc. has applied to sell plans in 24 states’ health-law consumer marketplaces next year, including major markets such as Texas and Pennsylvania.

    The company’s insurance arm, which is the biggest U.S. insurer by number of people covered, had previously said it would expand to “as many as two dozen” states’ individual-plan exchanges. Its moves are being closely watched by competitors and analysts, partly because the insurer’s footprint will grow so much. This year, UnitedHealthcare sold health-law plans in just four states.

    Jeff Lucht, a senior vice president at UnitedHealthcare who oversees its public exchange strategy, said that in addition to Texas and Pennsylvania, the new states are expected to include Florida, North Carolina, Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. Among the other new states are Michigan, Georgia, Indiana and Ohio, according to a list compiled by analyst Scott Fidel of Deutsche Bank. The four states where UnitedHealthcare currently sells exchange plans are New York, Nevada, Maryland and Colorado.

    UnitedHealthcare chose the new markets based on “a combination of the growth opportunity…and the extent to which we thought we could offer a competitive product in the market,” Mr. Lucht said.

    The insurer will use a variety of plan designs, including health-maintenance organizations, Mr. Lucht said, and will focus on keeping premiums down: “Consumers voted, and that vote was that they really valued affordability,” he said. Still, UnitedHealthcare’s pricing will aim to cover costs and achieve a positive margin, he said.

  33. stu, bommacare’s the greatest scheme of all to drain what’s left of the assets of the middle class, and render us all stupefied and subservient to our right-thinking masters.

  34. I’d argue that bommacare’s even better than perpetual war in the world of scams.

  35. Today’s doctored gubmint doublespeak:

    “Philly Fed has beaten expectations for 6 months in a row with its biggest surge since the 2009 lows. Against expectations of 19.3, Philly Fed printed 28.0 – highest since March 2011 all-time highs. All sounds awesome right? Umm, no, 7 of 9 internal declined including – New Orders tanked, Employment tumbled, Prices Paid plunged, and Prices Received slumped. So, in case you were wondering how it is possible that Philly Fed surged given such shitty internals, the 6-month forecast index (“hope”) just surged to 22-year highs. And not only that: put all hopes of that long-delayed CapEx renaissance on hold: “While most broad indicators of future growth have been improving, the survey’s future capital spending index has been slipping. Although the index decreased just 1 point this month, its reading, at 17.5, is now the lowest it has been in seven months.”

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-08-21/philly-fed-surges-highest-march-2011-despite-plunge-jobs-new-orders

  36. ccb223 says:

    Cops doing their thing:

    http://thefreethoughtproject.com/cell-phone-video-emerges-refutes-st-louis-cops-version-shooting/

    Guy was an idiot but how about a taser or shooting him in the leg…

  37. Toxic Crayons says:

    Lawyer for the defense of Shaneen Allen is an expert on NJ gun law. He wrote a huge book that the cops use to figure out complicated NJ gun laws. He says carry permits are getting more and more popular in the US and they catch people all the time from PA on the way to AC with CCW’s. He thinks they’re trying to send a message to those people and making an example of Shaneen.

    joyce says:
    August 22, 2014 at 9:19 am
    Police report, charging documents, plea agreement, and early release from probation notice for Todd Doering, a Pennsylvania man who was charged with illegal possession of a licensed gun in New Jersey
    http://www.scribd.com/doc/237252294/Documents-on-the-Todd-Doering-Case

    same exact situation as Shaneen Allen, was given probation (still criminal record)… but easier to expunge in 5 years I assume. that being said, different prosecutor

  38. Comrade Nom Deplume, Guardian of the Realm says:

    [43] 223,

    Shooting in the leg.

    Everyone who knows anything about law enforcement or shooting got a huge laugh at that. I will give you the benefit of the doubt here and tell you know ghat this is considered an absolutely ridiculous statement by anyone with some knowledge in these areas.

  39. grim says:

    43 – Police are instructed to aim for the torso as it represents the largest part of the body mass. The reason for this is that it is harder to miss, because when you miss, the bullet goes stray, and can impact an unintended target. Bullets fired into the torso generally do not exit the torso.

    Aiming for a leg seems like something an action hero would do in a movie, but in real life, it means you are going to miss and kill the 3 year old kid behind the target.

    Tasers kill plenty of people, don’t assume they are non-lethal. They also represent a significantly higher risk of failure, since two probes need to make skin contact to be effective. What is the taser missed, and a 3 year old kid didn’t have a daddy that night, because the assailant put a knife in his chest?

    Look, I’m plenty anti-cop, but let’s be realistic here. If a cop has a gun pointed at you, I don’t care if you are guilty or not, you stop. If you are being arrested, you submit and get arrested, that’s the law. It’s not a debate.

  40. grim says:

    You approach a cop with a knife in your hand, disregard instruction despite having a gun pointed at you, all while acting in a completely wild manner, you expect to get shot. This is not a civil rights discussion, this is not an overreach discussion, this isn’t an abuse of power discussion.

    It’s really fun to play monday morning quarterback, and point to the assailants mental illness as a justification for his actions, but in the 10 seconds between getting out of the car and firing the bullet, I doubt the police had time to consult the DSM-IV and request a psych consult.

  41. ccb223 says:

    I am certainly no cop or gun expert but there has to be a better way, better training, something. How about rubber bullets?

    The guy was at least 10 feet away and they didn’t just pop him in the torso, guy took one to the head too. Especially in light of everything that’s going on around there with Ferguson you’d think the cops would have more awareness. The guy was clearly an idiot and probably on drugs but seems excessive. My 2 cents from my MMQB chair.

  42. FKA 2010 Buyer says:

    I might bank with them but not get a loan. I can easily see where Google/Facebook snooped through your content and start taking action. Imagine you are talking about getting a car or go on a vacation online and you all of a sudden get a payment reminder from your bank.

    Would You Bank With Google Or Amazon?

    We usually think of banks as our leading source of financial services, but what if they faced new competitors. Would you be willing to get a mortgage from Google or Amazon, Apple or Facebook?

    Don’t laugh, it could happen — and perhaps sooner than anyone expects. It may be that banks are about to become the latest business sector to face “disruption,” new competition from a variety of non-traditional players such as online giants Google and Amazon as well as a newly-emerging host of “nonbanks.”

  43. FKA 2010 Buyer says:

    @ccb223

    The Star Trek technology to change your weapon settings between stun and kill doesn’t exist just yet.

  44. 1987 Condo says:

    Back to Housing?:
    Strategies for Setting a Price for Your Home

    What’s the perfect price when selling your home? Nobody knows. List too low and watch your investment slip away. List too high and drive potential buyers away.

    By Alina Dizik

    Aug. 21, 2014 12:10 p.m. ET

    BLINDED BY LOVE Sellers often overestimate the value of their homes for emotional reasons. Sol Linero

    To get top dollar for his Portland, Ore., home, Alex Hickman played lowball. He set his asking price below that of comparable homes nearby—and got six offers in four days.

    “We strategically listed it under market and tried to create kind of a frenzy,” says Mr. Hickman, a 26-year-old credit union examiner.

    Mr. Hickman purchased the home in 2005 for $325,000 and listed it for $497,000. He says a $505,000 asking price would have been more reflective of the market, especially since the property’s first-floor apartment could generate rental income. Mr. Hickman had also finished the basement of the home, which is in desirable Southeast Portland, an older neighborhood with few new construction projects. So his go-low pricing strategy was a gamble, one his real-estate agent initially counseled against.

    PRICED TO THE NINES Research has found that pricing at $999,900 rather than $1 million influences buying decisions on a subconscious level. The home ‘seems way cheaper,’ one professor says. Sol Linero

    “It creates a havoc that doesn’t serve anyone well,” says Rebecca Walter, Mr. Hickman’s agent at Redfin. A low asking price doesn’t necessarily increase what buyers offer, she says, since they are more willing to compete on other terms of the contract, such as paying all cash for the purchase or waiving the inspection to speed the sale.

    In residential real estate, the asking price is often as much about psychology as it is reality. Michael Seiler, professor of real estate and finance at The College of William & Mary in Williamsburg, Va., said that most home buyers don’t realize that setting an asking price is primarily a negotiating tactic. “When you set a list price, you’re sending a signal to the market,” he says.

    Mike McCann, a real-estate agent with Berkshire Hathaway BRKB -0.71% HomeServices, Fox & Roach in Philadelphia, says pricing can be “a delicate balance.” Most sellers overestimate the worth of their home, he says, and some agents will start with a too-high price to avoid hard feelings. Others agents may start high just to get the seller’s business or, conversely, they’ll price too low for a quick sale and commission, he adds.

    NOT BUDGING A precise asking price, such as $795,475, indicates that the seller is less open to negotiation. Sol Linero

    Most agents say that getting sellers to start with a realistic asking price is one of their biggest challenges. Steve Beckman spent $150,000 on renovations to his 100-year-old farmhouse in Ojai, Calif., which he purchased for $325,000. When selling five years later, Mr. Beckman, a 61-year-old retired landscape designer, asked $500,000—with both financial and emotional factors coming into play. It sat on the market for almost 1½ years, eventually selling for $242,000, far less than he and his wife, Mary, had wanted. “We didn’t even get a nibble at the asking price,” says Mr. Beckman. “Nobody cares what you paid for it.”

    Large gaps between the asking and sale price are somewhat uncommon, says Stan Humphries, chief economist at real-estate website Zillow. Z +0.08% In May, median sale prices were only 3% lower than asking prices in 35 metro areas across the U.S., according to a Zillow analysis. Separately, real-estate agents surveyed by the National Association of Realtors said that only 3% of homes sold for less than 23% below the asking price in 2013; and only 2% of homes sold at 12% or more above asking price.

    Homes without comparable sales data often see the widest price gaps, says Prof. Seiler. If the property has historic value, for example, is set on a unique plot of land or has a one-of-a-kind design, it can be more difficult to price. Without comparables, “an appraiser will have no clue what a property is worth and a buyer wouldn’t know either,” he said.

    GOING LOW Asking below market price can generate a ‘frenzy’ of offers—but doesn’t necessarily translate to a higher sale price. Sol Linero

    Comparable prices become less relevant when inventory in a desirable neighborhood is unusually low. “This creates a real feeding frenzy for real estate,” Mr. Humphries says.

    No one claims to fully understand the psychology of pricing. But some common practices have emerged. For example, research has found that an exact asking price, such as $795,475, often indicates that the price is less negotiable than a round number, such as $800,000, Prof. Seiler says. “Those using precise pricing show confidence in the price,” he says.

    Additionally, pricing at $999,900 rather than $1 million influences buying decisions on a subconscious level. The home “seems way cheaper,” according to Prof. Seiler. And even when a home sells above asking price, the initial lower asking price can make buyers feel like they are getting a great deal. “The goal is to make it stick in your head that you’re getting a bargain,” he says. “It’s the way our brain looks at numbers.”

    Developer Sebastian Rein took that approach when he priced a home in the Mar Vista neighborhood of Los Angeles at $2.995 million—just $5,000 less than the intended $3 million price tag. The strategy got the property “a wider audience,” he says. The 4,400-square-foot home sold within a week at $3.1 million. “When you come to market, you have a month or six weeks before it starts to fade in people’s minds,” said Mr. Rein, who listed the property with L.A.-based Partners Trust. “There’s a velocity you have to achieve when you come to market.”

    Of course, unplanned events can sometimes trump price. This January, Karen and Curtis Spillers put their five-bedroom, 1910 home in Wilmette, Ill., on the market for $835,000, a price they considered aligned with the market. Then, a winter storm dumped close to a foot of snow on the ground during the open house. Despite the weather, over 100 people showed up, says Ms. Spillers, 53, a technology public-relations executive who bought the home almost 25 years ago.

    Within 24 hours, the couple had five offers, eventually accepting a $900,000 bid. They credit the timing: Coming on the market in January meant there was only one other home for sale in their Chicago suburb, which has highly rated schools. The couple, now living in St. Louis, didn’t expect to get a premium on their asking price. “We couldn’t have been happier with the results,” she said.

    http://online.wsj.com/articles/strategies-for-setting-a-price-for-your-home-1408637453

  45. chicagofinance says:

    Mike Lupica from the Daily News……NOTE….not some NY Post….Fox News for NYC, but Lupica from the Daily News……holy crap?!?!

    Lupica: Obama’s return to the links shows lack of leadership in face of ISIS threat

    For the second consecutive day, President Obama reappeared at a golf course on the island of Martha’s Vineyard, seemingly counting the strokes toward being an ex-President following the release of video showing American journalist James Foley being executed by an ISIS jihadist.

    President Obama doesn’t let ISIS keep him off golf course, as he plays a second straight day on Martha’s Vineyard Thursday.

    There are so many reasons, too many, why the American people now think Barack Obama is about as good at being President as he is at hitting a golf ball. His reaction to the execution of journalist James Foley in front of the world is just the latest. When the going gets tough, the tough really do go golfing.

    He reacts about as well to the hideous death of Foley as his administration has to the growing threat of ISIS. Even some of the slow thinkers around this President ought to be able to figure that out by now.

    So now Foley is dead and ISIS is threatening to kill more of ours and this isn’t George W. Bush’s problem, or his fault. It is the problem — and more than somewhat the fault — of this administration. President Obama has to wear this one, and in this case that does not mean the golf clothes he wears on Martha’s Vineyard.

    Once again, in a moment of horror for this country he seems almost weirdly detached. It was no different when radicals in Ukraine shot a passenger jet out of the sky and killed hundreds of innocent people, and Obama originally spent less than a minute on that in a speech in Delaware before returning to his prepared text, and then more fund-raising after that.

    The country believes less and less in his ability to do what he was hired to do — actually lead — and to connect with both the fear and the anger about an event like this. Once more he seems to be counting the days until he is an ex-President, when his whole life becomes rhetoric and speeches instead of actual leadership.

    Of course nothing he was going to do on Wednesday was going to bring back Foley, or stop ISIS dead in its tracks. But he should have waited at least one day before hitting the links with his buddies. The rollout of Obamacare was smarter than this.

    “It is clear that (ISIS) didn’t have our complete attention, even though this is a terrorist group that publishes an annual report you can actually find online,” Raymond Kelly, the great former police commissioner of this city who rewrote the book on counterterrorism in a 9/11 world, was saying on Thursday morning from Los Angeles. “But they finally have our attention now.”

    Then Kelly added this: “We now have to show that we won’t be intimidated by these people. If we have to respond with even more air strikes in areas where we think they might be located, that’s what we have to do. I don’t see how we have any choice.”

    The murder of James Foley was not the murder of thousands at the World Trade Center, Bin Laden’s men bringing death out of the sky that day. It was the death of a journalist, but felt the same as the cold-blooded execution of an American serviceman or woman, as we all watched helplessly, after our government had refused to pay as much as $132 million in ransom.

    So now the man John “the Beatle” becomes the most wanted man on the planet, the way Bin Laden once was before SEAL Team Six put enough bullets into him. They will use tips and social media and voice recognition to identify him and track him down, and maybe this time it will take weeks or months instead of the years it took the best of our special forces to finally track down Bin Laden.

    Only now he is gone and ISIS is so obviously populated with his Bin Laden’s bedbug disciples. And the rise of ISIS has absolutely happened on this President’s watch. He absolutely does not get to put this on Bush, as much of a failure as he was, or anybody else. The cycle continues. One terrorist organization breeds another. We go into Iraq more than a decade ago and we are going to clean up everything over there, and what happens instead is that the country eventually becomes a Parris Island for ISIS.

    “These guys are just using Zarqawi’s old playbook,” Ray Kelly said, referencing Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the militant Islamist who formed al-Tawhid in the 1990s, and one of whose specialties in Iraq became hostage executions. He eventually threw in with Bin Laden. Two Air Force jets finally bombed him all the way to the gates of hell in June 2006.

    So he is gone, but others have replaced him. Now there is ISIS and John the Beatle and the hostage executed is James Foley, because we wouldn’t pay up and didn’t rescue him in time. We hear all the time about U.S. intelligence. More and more in this administration, it seems like an oxymoron.

    Or maybe in this case, just so the President can process what we’re talking about here, we should be referencing a real bad and real dumb double bogey.

  46. Dan in debt says:

    Maybe I already missed the discussion on the top 100 Schools. Is there a riot in Glen Ridge since they dropped into the 20s?

  47. anon (the good one) says:

    of course there has to be a better way. Spiderman, for example, uses nets instead of guns to fight bad guys

    but seriously, gun nuts won’t allow it. a Star Trek technology to incapacitate instead of kill would bring the gun issue for discussion. NRA and gun manufacturer lobby congress on these issues.

    FKA 2010 Buyer says:
    August 22, 2014 at 11:52 am
    @ccb223

    The Star Trek technology to change your weapon settings between stun and kill doesn’t exist just yet.

    ccb223 says:
    August 22, 2014 at 11:45 am
    I am certainly no cop or gun expert but there has to be a better way, better training, something. How about rubber bullets?

  48. grim says:

    I am certainly no cop or gun expert but there has to be a better way, better training, something. How about rubber bullets?

    To piss someone off? What happens when you are faced with a 250 pound maniac on meth and pcp? I bet you a half dozen bullets wouldn’t drop him. In what moment will you decide what ammunition to load your gun with?

    There seems to be a whole lot of chatter about why so many bullets are fired in situations like this. Realize that when people get shot in real life, it’s nothing like getting shot in a movie. You aren’t knocked off your feet, blown backwards, or generally stopped with one bullet. I know people who have been shot, shot in the shoulder and the leg. His comment was that it wasn’t actually so bad. His words, not mine. He was however, very lucky to be hit where he was hit.

    So, the fact of the matter is, if you are going to shoot, you are going to keep shooting until the assailant drops. Shoot until the threat is gone.

    What happens when you shoot someone once, they stumble, go down on a knee, and then pull out a handgun and shoot back?

  49. grim says:

    Also realize that accuracy is shit in these situations, you are aiming by pointing, not by sighting. The minute the first round is fired, if you are firing a second round, it will have nowhere near the same accuracy as the first.

    My wife and I were both trained by an ex-military, ex-police firearms instructor. Rule #1, don’t point your gun at anything you aren’t committed to kill. Once you fire, be sure you achieve your intended goal. If the assailant can get to you, he or she can get your gun, and they will not hesitate to kill you and your children with it.

  50. NJGator says:

    Somewhere out there an advertising copywriter should be fired.

    “Watch the WTC fly through”

    http://www.westfieldcorp.com/new-developments/

  51. Toxic Crayons says:

    To me, that video was suicide by cop.

  52. grim says:

    Spider man, yeah, we should pass a law making crime illegal too.

  53. Fast Eddie says:

    Most agents say that getting sellers to start with a realistic asking price is one of their biggest challenges. Steve Beckman spent $150,000 on renovations to his 100-year-old farmhouse in Ojai, Calif., which he purchased for $325,000. When selling five years later, Mr. Beckman, a 61-year-old retired landscape designer, asked $500,000—with both financial and emotional factors coming into play. It sat on the market for almost 1½ years, eventually selling for $242,000, far less than he and his wife, Mary, had wanted. “We didn’t even get a nibble at the asking price,” says Mr. Beckman. “Nobody cares what you paid for it.”

    He was into the place for 475K and eventually sold at 242K. Nice. Do you realize how many f.ucked individuals there are in our neck of the woods facing the same potential scenario?

  54. Fast Eddie says:

    ChiFi [52],

    Oblammey’s objective as president is retribution, penalties and punishment for anyone that doesn’t believe in his f.ucked up ideological failures.

  55. ccb (48)-

    Rubber bullets on a PCP-crazed thug? Just makes ’em madder. You’re funny, dude.

    “I am certainly no cop or gun expert but there has to be a better way, better training, something. How about rubber bullets?”

  56. nwnj says:

    #58

    Ding, ding, ding. Provoking a confrentation and then pulling a knife is going to get you shot 100 times out of 100.

  57. Toxic Crayons says:

    56 – Did you go to Gun for hire?

  58. jj says:

    Other weird thing is people count the price they paid for renovations into sale price not what renovations were worth.

    For instance my lazy neighbor down the block never lifts a finger and over pays for repairs. He listed his house recently for 100K more than every similar home. Agent says he put a lot of money into house. But buyer could care less he hired professional painters and paid double, hired a licensed contractor who charged double. Also sellers seem to have no comprehension of depreciation. Went to see a newly renovated house with a new kitchen and bath. Get there it was put in back in 2003. I say by time house closes it will be 2015 and you are calling a 12 year old kitchen new and one with all 12 year old appliances to boot. Realtor said yes it is a new kitchen compared to most listings I get.

    Fast Eddie says:

    August 22, 2014 at 12:48 pm

    Most agents say that getting sellers to start with a realistic asking price is one of their biggest challenges. Steve Beckman spent $150,000 on renovations to his 100-year-old farmhouse in Ojai, Calif., which he purchased for $325,000. When selling five years later, Mr. Beckman, a 61-year-old retired landscape designer, asked $500,000—with both financial and emotional factors coming into play. It sat on the market for almost 1½ years, eventually selling for $242,000, far less than he and his wife, Mary, had wanted. “We didn’t even get a nibble at the asking price,” says Mr. Beckman. “Nobody cares what you paid for it.”

    He was into the place for 475K and eventually sold at 242K. Nice. Do you realize how many f.ucked individuals there are in our neck of the woods facing the same potential scenario?

  59. All Hype says:

    Doom:

    My friend did a medical rotation in the Norristown psych prison when one day a big six foot five, 290 pound dude comes in looking really beat up. The man was very pleasant and quite respectful to my friend. So my buddy asks him what happened. The inmate tells him he smoked a doobie that was laced with PCP. He totally wigs out and proceeds to take out 12 cops from 3 towns. The cops told the inmate that he was tossing officers over the roof of the squad car and dislocating shoulders left and right. The cops could not stop him with mace, clubs and fists. It took like 20 cops to get the guy pinned to the ground and handcuffed. The inmate never had a prior arrest, just a bad response to PCP.

    I heard another story years ago from a Trenton cop where a female teeneager that was probably 115 pounds on PCP took out 6 cops. The cops did not want to seriously hurt her cause she was a minor so they had to play rope a dope with her for over an hour to wear her out.

  60. I’m sure that back in the day, some NFL d-linemen prolly banged some PCP before a big game.

  61. jj says:

    Guns are something a real cop never has to use. Trouble is we have very few real cops. Being a cop is a loser profession nowdays and they allow folks of all sizes, ages and sex to be a cop.

    Back in the day New York City had a height requirement to be a cop, six feet or higher, had to be male, had to be in shape, pass a physical and tests and had a strict cut off on age to be in acadamy. New York was 27 for many years. Meaning 28 is too old to even apply for a cop and lots of cops had annual physicals. No beer belly cops.

    My long dead uncle was a cop for 35 years in the Bronx and Manhattan. A beat cop whole time and never used his gun. When the Bronx turned superbad he never left.

    But he was 18 and a store detective, bouncer and a golden gloves boxer when he applied to be a cop. Had that broken nose, Irish Accent, big mitts for hands and a quick temper and knew how to use his night stick.

    Back in the 1950s he used to police the MSG Boxing Fights where men were men and fist fights happened all night. He used to throw them out two at a time, grab each man by neck drag them right out of MSG and throw them in the street Ocassionally, he give the men a “tap” with his nightstick to show them who was the boss.

    Once some smart alleck he drags down the steps and throws him in the gutter and wacks him with the nite stick goes is that all you got? I love folks who ask “is that all you got” Then he adds on what are you going to do Arrest me, big deal?

    My uncle grabs his wallet takes a look and goes I got something far worse for you planned, drags him to the patrol car throws him in back, drunk stinking of cigars, ripped suit and black eye and bloody nose and all.

    He drives him home to his Apartment building in the Bronx in the middle of the night and starts banging on his door yelling NY Police Open up. All the noisey neighbors came out and wife comes to door in her nightgown. Goes I caught you husband drunk and fighting at a boxing match when he should be home with his wife and kids I dont want to arrest him but I expect you to take care of this for me. Wife goes and grabs a rolling pin from drawer. Uncle goes that should work fine, throws the guy into apt slams door and you hear the wife screaming and hitting him with the rolling pin. Uncle goes you know what I should have just arrested him, but I guess we wont be seeing him any more and he never did.

  62. joyce says:

    If ANYONE has a gun pointed at you, I don’t care if you are guilty or not, you stop. If you are being ACCOSTED, you submit and get ACCOSTED, that’s [nature’s] law. It’s not a debate.

    A costume and shiny badge doesn’t change anything.

    grim says:
    August 22, 2014 at 11:25 am

    If a cop has a gun pointed at you, I don’t care if you are guilty or not, you stop. If you are being arrested, you submit and get arrested, that’s the law. It’s not a debate.

  63. joyce says:

    Forget Law Enforcement… you’re right though, as is Grim, if you decide to shoot (right or wrong) you keep shooting until there is no doubt.

    Comrade Nom Deplume, Guardian of the Realm says:
    August 22, 2014 at 11:22 am
    [43] 223,

    Shooting in the leg.

    Everyone who knows anything about law enforcement or shooting got a huge laugh at that. I will give you the benefit of the doubt here and tell you know ghat this is considered an absolutely ridiculous statement by anyone with some knowledge in these areas.

  64. 1987 Condo says:

    #68..agree. While you may be justified to kill someone, you are still killing someone and that is always a weighty decision….

  65. 1987 Condo says:

    #60…as they apparently do down the shore and in my town…they will give the house to the “kids”…

  66. joyce says:

    Two comments:
    The torso might be hard(er) to miss than limbs, but doesn’t stop the pigs from missing more than they hit.
    I’m not sure if you picked a 3yr old on purpose or not, but I’ll find the link for the cop that missed his target and killed a (if i recall correctly) a 3yr old recently.

    grim says:
    August 22, 2014 at 11:25 am
    43 – Police are instructed to aim for the torso as it represents the largest part of the body mass. The reason for this is that it is harder to miss, because when you miss, the bullet goes stray, and can impact an unintended target. Bullets fired into the torso generally do not exit the torso.

    Aiming for a leg seems like something an action hero would do in a movie, but in real life, it means you are going to miss and kill the 3 year old kid behind the target.

  67. Toxic Crayons says:

    F@ck Off Joyce. I’m tired of your anti cop rants. Get over it already.

  68. gary (60)-

    Getting sellers to list at realistic prices is the ONLY challenge. Houses that ask market-level pricing sell quickly and easily. Other issues that arise in the transaction are easily negotiated and handled if the asking price is right.

    Going from 2006 into 2007, I began to have listing appointment after listing appointment in which the seller had a pre-determined price that had no correlation to reality. Every prospect blurted out the usual “we have to have xxx…”, “we’re not giving it away” or “we have sunk xxx into it, and we have to get it out”. Around that time, I also began to notice that no seller I met had any idea of things like cost-of-carry or sunk costs…nor did they have the slightest interest in learning about them.

    In the end, I turned down 99% of these listings, and in truth, I wouldn’t have gotten many of them had I stayed in the running to the end. It got to the point where the best part of my listing presentation was where I would abruptly get up in the middle, shake the owner’s hand, wish him good luck and leave. In almost all these cases, the houses failed to ultimately sell (and the owners are still in them today!) or the sales became multi-year drainfests, with final selling prices that represented huge losses to the sellers.

    I started doing short sales because I realized those were the only deals available in which I got to set the price with no pushback from the seller. For a couple of years, until the Robosigning thing killed the FK market in NJ, I had a helluva run, simply because I got to put inventory on the market at market prices.

    Those were the days.

  69. toxic (75)-

    joyce is right. I do believe there are plenty of good police, but the scales have tipped.

    Most police departments are just private militia for the politicians who grease them with more and more bennies in return for electoral support and for rich people. The people in charge of them are just as corrupt as the “crooks” they’re allegedly policing.

  70. doesn’t help that tickets, fines, etc are a major cash cow for tapped-out local gubmints…

  71. Juice Box says:

    Rope a dope.

    “Hundreds of cops have been ordered to bring their “hats and bats” — helmets and old-school wooden nightsticks — to the Rev. Al Sharpton’s march against police brutality, sources said Thursday.

    About 350 officers, some on their days off, were told to report to the Staten Island rally at 6 a.m. Saturday, two hours earlier than usual.”

    http://nypost.com/2014/08/22/riot-cops-ready-for-sharpton-rally-on-saturday/

  72. joyce says:

    It was also filing a false police report. Or perjury, or whatever similar statute they have.

    Toxic Crayons says:
    August 22, 2014 at 12:41 pm
    To me, that video was suicide by cop.

  73. joyce says:

    KHOU launched an investigation into Jerry’s claims and uncovered an alleged “ticket-rigging scheme,” where cops listed on tickets who were not actually present at the time of the offense were cashing in on overtime when they appeared in court later.

    http://www.theblaze.com/stories/2014/08/22/when-a-man-was-handed-a-speeding-ticket-he-noticed-something-fishy-now-an-alleged-scheme-has-been-uncovered/

  74. Ragnar says:

    Toxic,
    ISIS apparently hasn’t yet figured out a way to get onto military golf courses.

  75. Anon E. Moose says:

    Boomerang buyers are back in the market — Thank You FHA!

    “I wanted to buy a house again, but I was still nervous because I made such a bad mistake before,” Noblejas says. “Even renting was hard when I first lost my house. I didn’t even know if I could buy again, but I talked to a loan officer and was able to qualify for an FHA [Federal Housing Administration] loan.”

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/realestate/after-losing-their-homes-in-the-foreclosure-crisis-boomerang-buyers-are-back/2014/08/21/1a6f7092-18ca-11e4-9e3b-7f2f110c6265_story.html?hpid=z15

  76. grim says:

    Does ISIS make a good falafel?

  77. painhrtz - whatever says:

    no but she apparently made a great scarab salad for Ra

  78. clotluva says:

    81 juice box

    I like Cardinal Dolan’s expression better. “WTF is this guy talking about? Are you out of your mind?!?!”

  79. chicagofinance says:

    The video captures it, yes?

    BERLIN — A German court says a landlady was within her rights to evict a man for persistently using a squeaky swing set in his apartment late at night as a sex prop.

    The court in Munich said Friday the unidentified man installed the “very old” chain swing set in his apartment in 2012 and regularly disturbed his neighbors with “sexual, athletic and squeaking noises” late into the night, causing multiple complaints.

    It noted his rental agreement included a clause to be quiet between 10 p.m. and 7 a.m.

    In upholding the landlady’s decision to evict him, the court focused on the tenant’s use of the swing set, saying its use late at night “would no longer correspond to normal rental use, and must therefore not be tolerated as socially acceptable.”

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tg3V8HDK5go

  80. NJGator says:

    Dan 53 – Not yet. But that’s only because the full list is not out until September and no one is around and paying attention yet.

    When we dropped from 4 to 12 in 2012, i believe our Superintendent had to study the reasons for the “precipitous decline” and make a presentation about it at a BOE meeting.

    Good thing the 2014 selling season is over :)

  81. NJT says:

    #89 (Gary) – Best year of my life, BTW (89)….monetarily and personally but onto the post:

    Had a tenant with a fetish (OK, more than one). He liked to target shoot (with a .22) in the backyard after midnight in the summer at….unusual targets. Ding, ding, ding. Drove the neighbors crazy. One of them called the cops. Turned out he had a cache of illegal weapons hidden in the drop ceiling of the finished basement. Huh, wondered why he told me to wait a day to fix a plumbing problem…

  82. NJT says:

    #60 (Gary)

    “Getting sellers to list at realistic prices is the ONLY challenge. Houses that ask market-level pricing sell quickly and easily…”.

    Yup. Gone in DAYS with, often, multiple offers (none far above asking, though).

    I’m going to be selling one soon (at market price – or near). Can I start a bidding war? Hmmm….that’s a gamble.

  83. 30 year realtor says:

    Sellers…asking prices…today get a call from a guy from out of town. His father-in-law died and he is in town cleaning out the house. Already on the 2nd 30 yard dumpster. Housekeeping and upkeep were not the deceased owners favorite activities. Place is a wreck and will be torn down. House is in Fair Lawn on a 50 x 100 lot in a desirable location. Trouble is that the lot is substandard and if you tear down you have to build off of old foundation or variances will be required. Old house with about a 15 foot setback in an area with a 30 foot set back requirement.

    I explain the problems to the seller. Point out that the newly built home will have no garage, substandard setback and substandard lot size and that some local builders will not even bother with the property because of those issues. Give them an estimated value of about $175,000 to $185,000 and suggest a list price of $199,900. Seller tells me, how do you think a list of $249,000 will work?

  84. NJT says:

    LOVED a local house here. 2 BRD. Classic Craftsman, updated, well maintained, corner lot with an easy to finish walk up attic (along with a large NEVER flood basement that has an easy walk into stairway from the front).

    OLD dude thinks it’s 2006. Wouldn’t (and won’t) budge.

    “Harry down the street got $269 for his!”.

    Yeah, during the bubble.

    Guess he wants to die shoveling snow.

  85. anon (the good one) says:

    show it to Gary. it’s within his budget

    30 year realtor says:
    August 22, 2014 at 7:28 pm
    Seller tells me, how do you think a list of $249,000 will work?

  86. Michael says:

    “It’s the family they’re born into, the parenting they receive, the quality of their education, their prospects of getting into college, their connections to the labor market,” he says. “Many of these are very difficult for public policy [alone] to reach.”

    http://finance.yahoo.com/news/american-dream-illustrated-with-legos-brookings-200611923.html

  87. Does ISIS use Henckels or Wusthof?

  88. Grim says:

    Why does Syria still exist?

  89. Stupid me. Of course, ISIS uses the Ginsu knife. Prolly get a whole set from Iraqi late-night TV for 500,000 dinar. Indestructible, with a lifetime warranty: the only knife on earth that can cut through a beer can!!!

    http://www.ginsuknife.com/

  90. grim (99)-

    The world always needs the living example of an entire nation devoted to sectarian warfare, revenge killings, genocide, summary executions and use of poison gas.

    And, Miss Syria is really hot.

  91. The only thing that could make Syria more entertaining would be North Korea getting involved.

  92. The North Koreans could teach Syrians how to live on a diet of lightweight motor oil and weed salads.

  93. michael (96)-

    Sorry to disturb your reverie, but equality of outcome does not equal equality of opportunity.

  94. Comrade Nom Deplume, a.k.a. Captain Justice says:

    [104] clot,

    Equality of outcome is the goal:

    “Unfortunately, in too many of our hardest-hit communities, no matter how hard a child or her parents work, the life chances of that child, even her lifespan, is determined by the ZIP Code she grows up in. This is simply wrong,”

    HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan

  95. Essex says:

    105. Consistent with every other misguided notion ever dictated by the machines of government. Location is the whole enchilada.

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