More homeowners learn to swim, seriously delinquencies continue to fall

From MarketWatch:

15% of homes still seriously underwater

According to a report released Thursday by RealtyTrac, 15% of U.S. properties (representing 8.1 million properties) with a mortgage are seriously underwater — meaning the homeowner owes at least 25% more than the estimated market value of the property. This is down from 17% of mortgaged properties in the second quarter of this year and the lowest rate since the company began tracking negative equity in the first quarter of 2012. The highest percentage of homes that are seriously underwater were those bought during the housing bubble in 2006 (40% of homes bought in 2006 are still seriously underwater), 2007 (35%) and 2005 (32%) in particular.

While that sounds like good news — and it mostly is — there are some caveats. First, the rate of decline in negative equity is slowing, as home price appreciation is slowing, says Daren Blomquist, RealtyTrac vice president . Plus, the negative equity problem is particularly troubling for those with more modest homes: More than half of properties worth less than $50,000 and more than one-third of those worth $50,000 to $100,000 are seriously underwater, compared with fewer than 10% of homes worth $300,000 and above.

Furthermore, residents of some states — in particular those that were hit hardest by the housing bubble — are still feeling the negative equity pinch — big time. In Nevada — one of the states hit hardest by the housing crisis — nearly 1 in 3 mortgaged properties are seriously underwater, making it the state with the highest percentage of seriously underwater homes; Florida (28%), Illinois (26%) and Michigan (25%) also have high numbers of seriously underwater properties. All told, in eight U.S. states, more than one in five mortgaged properties is still seriously underwater.

On a brighter note, plenty of homeowners are feeling the benefits of this housing recovery. The percentage of mortgaged properties that are now equity rich — meaning that the homeowner has at least 50% equity — hit 20% (representing 10.8 million properties) in the third quarter, up from 19% last quarter. Hawaii tops the list, as more than one in three properties (35%) in this state have very high levels of equity, followed by New York and Vermont (both 33%). Blomquist says that these states are seeing higher levels of equity richness because they “didn’t see as big of a deterioration in home prices [during the housing crisis] as in other states.”

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113 Responses to More homeowners learn to swim, seriously delinquencies continue to fall

  1. Ottoman says:

    Speaking of the American right’s hatred for women (from yesterday), let’s take a look at their hero Ayn Rand. For those who don’t know, Dagny in Atlas Shrugged is supposed to be the epitome of a strong self sufficient and self determined woman.–

    “Dagny’s first lover, the mining heir Francisco d’Anconia, treats her like a possession: he drags her around by an arm, and once, when she makes a joke he doesn’t like, he slaps her so hard it bloodies her lip. The first time they have sex, he doesn’t ask for consent, but throws her down and does what he wants: “She knew that fear was useless, that he would do what he wished, that the decision was his.”

    Later on, Dagny has an affair with Hank Rearden (who’s married to someone else at the time, but this is the sort of minor consideration that doesn’t hold back Randian supermen). The first time they sleep together, it leaves Dagny bruised and bloody, and the morning after, Hank rants at her that he holds her in contempt and thinks of her as no better than a whore. Almost as soon as their relationship begins, he demands to know how many other men she’s slept with and who they were. When she won’t answer, he seizes her and twists her arm, trying to hurt her enough to force her to tell him.

    Believe it or not, none of this is meant to make us judge these characters negatively, because in Rand’s world, violent jealousy is romantic and abuse is sexy. She believed that women were meant to be subservient to men — in fact, she says that “the most feminine of all aspects” is “the look of being chained” — and that a woman being the dominant partner in a relationship was “metaphysically inappropriate” and would warp and destroy her fragile lady-mind.”

    http://www.salon.com/2014/04/29/10_insane_things_i_learned_about_the_world_reading_ayn_rands_atlas_shrugged_partner/

  2. anon (the good one) says:

    don’t get it, I just don’t get why right wingers hate women so much

  3. jj says:

    There is an imaginary increase in home values.

    For example on Long Island which is similar to NJ in pricing Newsday today reported that homes on Southshore of Long Island rose 1.3% from a year earlier and homes now hit a median sales price of 390K . The previous year prices were flate (rose zero). Realtors/NAR made that annoucement as a sign home prices are once again on the rise.

    However, Newsday point out that if you take the average home price from two years ago and inflation adjusted it (no gains, just inflation), the average home should be priced at $404,000.

    There was no gain in homes. Folks when inflation adjusted homes fell in value. Realtors forget about inflation.

  4. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    jj (previous thread) – Our place has 50 units, built in 1926 as 48 units but I think the condo conversion in 1978 sparked the developer to build two basement apartments at that time. All original units are at least 8 steps above grade with high ceilings, hardwood floors and all but a couple units have fireplaces. The two basement units are half below grade with low ceilings and on the same level as laundry, garbage, and storage units. Unfortunately for the basement dwellers, our proportional ownership goes by square footage and each apartment has more square footage so they pay higher condo fees and assessments even though their units are worth a third less than the above ground units.

    Even worse, when we had a big assessment to get all the fireplace chimneys re-done (About $8K per unit owner), they had to pay more than anyone else because the chimneys are considered common areas, even though they have no fireplaces of their own. It’s definitely the exception to the age-old value rule of buying the cheapest house in the best neighborhood

    Maint is a funny thing it is based on cost allocation not on price of unit in secondary market. A coop does it that way. I think condo buildings with equal maint buying the better unit even if in my case cost 55k more than worst unit is well worth it.

  5. Libturd in the City says:

    “Speaking of the American right’s hatred for women”

    Really? Wow are you sick.

  6. Libturd in the City says:

    “Speaking of the American right’s hatred for women”

    Is this the beginning of the lefts manufacture of sympathy for woman prior to the great Hillary campaign? I say this because it reeks of the same tactics the left employed to get the first black president in office.

    Baa.

  7. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    [6] I’m deathly afraid of another 8 years of a novelty president. I just hope she doesn’t bring needs testing to SS before I get mine.

  8. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    [3] If home prices were really rising organically Fannie and Freddie wouldn’t be bringing back no money down mortgages to lure in the last crop of greater fools.

  9. grim says:

    1 – What is your motive for trying to downplay by highlighting trite examples? For every example you post of an idiot celebrity beating his wife or girlfriend, I can post a dozen horror stories out of the middle east. Examples of such severity that it makes me ill.

    Sorry for the graphic nature so early this morning.

    A young Yazidi woman forced into sex slavery by the Islamic State begged the West to bomb the brothel where she was being held after militants raped her 30 times in just a few hours, it is claimed.

    The unidentified woman is understood to have been kept as a prisoner of the jihadists somewhere in western Iraq having been captured by ISIS during the Sinjar massacre in early August.

    A group raising awareness of ISIS’ persecution of women in the vast swathes of the Middle East under its control said the woman had contacted Kurdish peshmerga fighters by telephone to plead for the brothel to be bombed to put the women held as sex slaves out of their misery.

    She allegedly told the fighters she had been raped so frequently that she could no longer use the toilet, adding that the ordeal has been so harrowing that she plans to commit suicide even if freed.

    Details of the woman’s brutal experience at the hands of the Islamic State emerged during an interview with Kurdish activists staging demonstrations in London to raise awareness of the plight of women in the Middle East.

    During an interview with BBC World Service, a man identified as Karam described how a friend embedded with the peshmerga took a phone call from the Yazidi woman.

    Describing the woman as crying on the phone, Karam quoted her as saying: ‘If you know where we are please bomb us… There is no life after this. I’m going to kill myself anyway – others have killed themselves this morning.’

    ‘I’ve been raped 30 times and it’s not even lunchtime. I can’t go to the toilet. Please bomb us,’ he claimed the woman added.

  10. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    I bet if Alan Greenspan lurks on this board he has a boner right now.

    Believe it or not, none of this is meant to make us judge these characters negatively, because in Rand’s world, violent jealousy is romantic and abuse is sexy. She believed that women were meant to be subservient to men — in fact, she says that “the most feminine of all aspects” is “the look of being chained” — and that a woman being the dominant partner in a relationship was “metaphysically inappropriate” and would warp and destroy her fragile lady-mind.”

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

    [2] anon,

    I think I speak for Clot when I say that we don’t hate all women, just c*nts like you!

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

    [5] libturd,

    Ottoman and anon are the best arguments I can think of for reviving the Tenth Amendment.

    And Joyce, I don’t wanna hear it. Not that I will be around much today to read it anyway.

  13. grim says:

    It’s OK for the Islamic state to kidnap and behead people, because it’s relatively common for Americans to slice a ham on Christmas.

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

    Love him or hate him, you have to watch this video if only to hear what the Greenpeace activist thinks of Aurora, Colorado. Funny stuff.

    http://blogs.denverpost.com/thespot/2014/10/22/video-activist-james-okeefe-targets-colorados-mail-voting/114385/

  15. grim says:

    You know, I’ve actually never read any Ayn Rand.

    But if you must know what I read.

    Right now – Tom Wolfe – The Right Stuff.

    Before that, through the beginning of this year:

    Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand
    Thinking Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman
    Lost in Shangri La by Mitchell Zuckoff
    Juliet Naked by Nick Hornby
    Made It In America by Andrew Liveris
    Rules for Radicals by Saul Alinsky
    Emperor of all Maladies by Siddhartha Mukherjee
    Dumbest Generation by Mark Bauerlein
    Love is a Mix Tape by Rob Sheffield
    Talking to Girls about Duran Duran by Rob Sheffield
    Numbers Rule Your World by Kaiser Fung
    Pitch Anything by Oren Klaff
    Boomerang by Michael Lewis
    Tubes by Andrew Blum

    Probably missing a couple that were physical books, but those were the kindle reads.

    This doesn’t include “work” reading, of course. No comments about the 80s-centric fiction.

  16. grim says:

    Erasing Death by Sam Parnia

  17. jj says:

    Also if you flood all pay flood insurance equal but NFIP provides less coverage for below grade units as they call them basements. So the flood insuracne is split equally and the lower level units with the most chance of flooding gets the least payout.

    Also in a condo when you file a tax grievance normally the assssor offices does a single tax break for entire building then multiples it out. Which means the 1,200 square foot to floor sunny unit gets same deduction in value as the whole in the ground basement unit.

    other weird condo thing is “common areas” Nothing Common about them. The upper units are duplexes so there is crawl space unheated attic area above them for storage but it can only be accessed by the upper unit, but they pay no maint or taxes on it. Also the uppers have two balconies instead of one but balconies are “common areas” and as such no maint or tax on it. The final insult is grass is “common areas”. But if your unit faces parking lot and you want to sit outside it sucks. But if your unit has the lawn outside you can have a party and put chairs and tables outside. Technically you could set up in front of anyones house.

    Same goes for parking another common area. But some spots are better than other spots. This is why in secondary market better condos for for a lot more in condos where all units pay the same maint.

    In my coop we did it on market value. My lower floor coop without a balcony or parking spot paid less manit than the same size unit on a higher floor with a balcony and a spot. It ment my unit although suckier did not sell for a lot less. Why, becaue you saved on maint. You got paid to have the sucky unit. My condo I dont get paid to live in the sucky unit and right now sucky units are now worth 100K less.

    The Original NJ ExPat says:

    October 23, 2014 at 8:41 am

    jj (previous thread) – Our place has 50 units, built in 1926 as 48 units but I think the condo conversion in 1978 sparked the developer to build two basement apartments at that time. All original units are at least 8 steps above grade with high ceilings, hardwood floors and all but a couple units have fireplaces. The two basement units are half below grade with low ceilings and on the same level as laundry, garbage, and storage units. Unfortunately for the basement dwellers, our proportional ownership goes by square footage and each apartment has more square footage so they pay higher condo fees and assessments even though their units are worth a third less than the above ground units.

    Even worse, when we had a big assessment to get all the fireplace chimneys re-done (About $8K per unit owner), they had to pay more than anyone else because the chimneys are considered common areas, even though they have no fireplaces of their own. It’s definitely the exception to the age-old value rule of buying the cheapest house in the best neighborhood

    Maint is a funny thing it is based on cost allocation not on price of unit in secondary market. A coop does it that way. I think condo buildings with equal maint buying the better unit even if in my case cost 55k more than worst unit is well worth it.

  18. Libturd in the City says:

    Well the progressive left, in their great shallowness and due to their inability to actually think, must have been told that Atlas Shrugged is some kind of right wing playbook. I suppose they suffer from the same fear that many non-muslims have of the Koran. Sadly, I would bet that less than 5% of all republicans have even read it, let alone subscribe to much of what is written in it.

    But since Otto wrote it, and since he believes he is the local intellectual here whose purpose in life is save the rest of us from our own stupidity, then it must be true.

    Gator…where you at. I obviously haven’t been slapping you around enough.

  19. Libturd in the City says:

    Joyce…where you at b1tch? Slappy slappy!

  20. grim says:

    Stu – you are right, it is a little unfair.

    Most of us learned everything there was to know about Christianity by watching Jesus Christ Superstar, and everything about Judaism by watching Fiddler on the Roof, Hinduism through every Krishna chant the Beatles made, Buddhism by listening to the Beastie Boys, Scientology by watching Tom Cruise, and everything about Evangelicalism by watching, well, every hypocritical evangelical go down in flames … and about Islam? Well, see, that’s what we’re watching now. Unfortunately it’s popular culture and the media that shapes most of our views, not informed discussion, fact, etc.

  21. grim says:

    God I even took a class on comparative religion in college.

    Subaru – Check
    Electric Car – Check
    NY Times – Check
    Has Eaten Vegan Food – Check
    NPR – Check
    Has not read Ayn Rand – Check
    Worthless Education – Check
    Liberal – Check

  22. Ragnar says:

    Grim,
    That’s quite an impressive reading list for YTD. What do you consider your top 3, and why?
    I’m certainly vocal in suggesting that people try reading Ayn Rand’s fiction and nonfiction for themselves, rather than having leftist online political advocates do it for them. I think it’s a good sign that the left now recognizes what a potent enemy to their worldview Ayn Rand’s ideas are, proven by their mud-slinging, slathering, and ad-hominem attacks.

    My recent reading list is relatively weak. I read research and annual reports all day, so I tend to just take a break from reading at nights, play tennis, sometimes just chill with the 106 inch screen.

    American Railroads: Decline and Renaissance in the 20th Century (I don’t recommend to a general audience, but did see how regulation and price controls/supports/subsidies crippled this industry, until the worst were lifted).
    Expected Returns: An Investor’s Guide to Harvesting Market Rewards (something of a compilation of academic finance papers)
    Successful Investing is a Process (good reading for professional portfolio managers, particularly in regards to weighting and rebalancing strategy, the relative weaknesses of of cap weighted indexes vs alternatives)
    Other good books from recent years:
    Why Nations Fail by Acemoglu (they lack rule of law, property rights, among other things)
    The Great Deformation by Stockman (similar to what Clot says, Keynesians and Monetarists have created a Frankenstein economy)

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

    [15] grim

    Damn, boy, where do you find the time for that much reading?

    I think I have read only a fraction of what you read, and at my age, I am having some fun catching up on classics that I only cliff-noted, if I had to read them at all.

    Moby Dick (reading) (Melville)
    Lord of the Rings trilogy (reading) (Tolkein)
    The Great Gatsby (Fitzgerald)
    Wuthering Heights (reading) (Bronte)
    Walden (reading) (Thoreau)
    Kidnapped (Stevenson)
    Treasure Island (Stevenson)

    Plenty of nonfiction but all of that reading was work-related. That’s the problem with a job where you read and write often; you get tired of it and don’t always see reading as fun. Especially reading Thoreau and Melville–They seem predisposed to use 80 words when 5 will suffice. Makes for some tiresome reading.

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

    [15] grim,

    I have come to the conclusion that more is made of Ayn Rand by liberals than by conservatives. It is almost as if they needed to dust off her books in order to have something to bash the right with.

    It’s funny when you listen to anon and otto; on the one hand, we are all influenced by reading Ayn Rand. On the other hand, we can’t read.

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

    [23] redux,

    BTW, Stevenson should only be read by 12 year olds. Aside from the powerful influence Treasure Island clearly had on that genre, Stevenson was clearly a junk novelist.

  26. grim says:

    I travel a lot, about 50% of it cross-country, I’ve taken 44 flights so far this year, about 60,000 miles and I’ll fly 10,000 more easily by New Years, I’ll be on a plane Saturday again.

    It’s easy to load up on books flying 4+ hours in a shot. I’ll usually be reading a pop science book, something fiction, and something trade, and go between them. I’ve read more books in the time I’ve owned a Kindle than I’ve ever read before.

    Top this year were Unbroken and Lost in Shangri La, but I tend to enjoy military fiction, you don’t see it on this list, but WWII non-fiction made up a huge portion of last year’s list.

    One of my favorites in the last two years was Blind Descent by James Tabor, probably the most terrifying book I’ve ever read (if you are at all claustrophobic). Mainly because it provided me insight into an area I didn’t realize was so compelling (caving and cave diving).

    Ashamed to say I’ve only recently read Bonfire of the Vanities (last year), it ranks as one of my favorites. It’s still so god damn relevant. I’ll probably read it again after I finish this Wolfe book.

    The Kahneman book is good (Thinking Fast and Slow), I was introduced to Kahneman a long time ago, as a Cog Psych undergrad, studying Heuristics and Biases. Have you ever read Thaler? It’s along the same lines (Hat tip Chi).

    I’m going to pick up the Railroads book, it sounds incredibly interesting.

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

    [18] libturd,

    Otto, like most of his ilk, gets all his erudition from internet memes and Salon articles with unsupportable, syllogistic arguments that would get laughed out of any debate competition or courtroom.

  28. Liquor Luge says:

    Bonfire of the Vanities is really about the period of time that we’ll look back on and recognize as the death of the economy.

  29. Liquor Luge says:

    We are all just necronomic zombies now, huffing away on the vapors of QE and waiting for our next victim to offer up a little face-meat for our dining pleasure.

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

    [26] grim

    Okay, that explains the time. I don’t fly nearly as much and when I do, I am keeping kids in line. And the last time I flew a lot for work, I was billing hours on the flights.

    Thinking Fast and Slow sounds interesting, as does the Kaiser Fung book. I may look at that them next, time permitting.

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

    [29] luge

    “We are all just necronomic zombies now, huffing away on the vapors of QE and waiting for our next victim to offer up a little face-meat for our dining pleasure.”

    It finally occurred to me why anon, otto and fabian aren’t worried about a Zombie Apocalyse: Zombies eat brains.

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

    Wonder how many zombies I will see trick or treating this Halloween. Last year, I don’t recall seeing zombies but you have to think that this year, it will be the Costume of Choice.

    Well, off to find a tailor to have my tux let out. Party season is coming and last time I wore it, I learned that the Universe wasn’t the only thing expanding.

  33. Libturd in the City says:

    Nom,

    Stop making so much sense and start beating your wife.

  34. Fabius Maximus says:

    #5 lib
    No it all comes back to the right pandering to the conservative Chr1stian bade. The 112th congress was the best HR 3 was the first of I think 47 bills passed by the house limiting ab0rt1on. The economy is in the sh1tter and that’s their 3th highest priority.
    Yet we get the assertion from you and Gary that it’s O and the left making an issue out of the lady plumbing.

    Moo, the sound of what your full of.
    . :*)

  35. Fabius Maximus says:

    #9 grim
    I forgot we subcontracted that task to B1ackwater on our side.

  36. Anon E. Moose says:

    Tool [2];

    don’t get it, I just don’t get why right wingers hate women so much

    I know ignorant platitudes are all you have to offer, but you picked a particularly poor day to choose this topic, considering what your messiah did just two days ago.

    “You’re gonna kiss me. Give him something to talk about. Now, he’s really jealous.”

    I saw the video, I didn’t see any “affirmative consent” to that kiss. I guess its only a War on Women when you can accuse your opponent of doing it; business as usual when its your own luminaries. Let’s not even get into Bill Clinton…

    http://www.cnn.com/2014/10/21/politics/obama-early-voting-jokes/

  37. Libturd in the City says:

    I used to be a huge science fiction fan, though now I really don’t have much time to read more than news bytes. When I try, I end up falling asleep. Anyone here read any of L. Ron Hubbard’s scifi? I found his Battlefield Earth series really, really good though very similar in style to Hitchhikers. Yeah…I know he’s a freak, but that only makes this series that much more interesting. It’s a shame the film was so awful. Would have liked to see all ten books made into movies.

  38. Libturd in the City says:

    Fab…I won’t argue with you there. Both sides do their best to pander to their sheep. What bothers me is often those sheep take the bait. Hook, line and sinker.

    I also won’t argue that the progressives are winning the battle for the most sheep or that the repubs continue to dig their own graves by continuing to pander to what little bit of their base remains (the CC). But this doesn’t mean that the progressive agenda is correct for America. Take NJ for example. It’s slowly morphing into Detroit under anti-corporate policies that aim to redistribute wealth. Everyone either seems to work for the government or is on the dole here. It’s no wonder the state is nearly bankrupt when it comes to paying obligations. And the services here truly suck. If it weren’t for Gator and my NYC jobs, we’d be outta here faster than Obama can read a teleprompter.

  39. jj says:

    Grim – thank God I was born all knowing so I dont have to waste my time doing all that reading

  40. Ragnar says:

    Grim,
    You’re warned about that Railroad book. It wasn’t as good as you might think. Some sections just have to be skipped unless you’re really interested in the names and dates of some merger made 40 years ago. The author is no right-winger at all, just one of those dry academic economists who happened to work in the industry and regulatory bodies. But overall it’s a fair book, with some blind spots. If anything, the main theme is, for close readers – if you want investment in transport infrastructure, you need profits to incentivize it, and a regulatory system that recognizes that. But this author isn’t going to write it that directly.

    Thinking Fast and Slow is a very interesting book which I recommend. Everyone who wants to be someone in my office has read it and discussed the conclusions. Essentially, it gives a huge list of common mistakes in judgment, with some tips on how to keep decisions more rational. But I think some new wave of behavioralists are now running too far with this and in the wrong direction – essentially gleefully saying – look – people make mistakes in judgment all the time – so let’s have government take over more of people’s decision making, because we in government can make better decisions than the hopelessly behaviorally flawed common people. I don’t believe Kahneman advocates this conclusion, btw. An “outside view” would suggest that bureaucratic decisions are even worse than those of the “non-perfectly rational” marketplace.

  41. Ragnar says:

    Anyone read the “Game of Thrones” series novels? I had a strong dislike after the first novel, but warmed up in subsequent novels. However, the worldview is bleak, Machiavellian, and amoral, which I don’t like.

  42. Toxic Crayons says:

    1 and 2

    Your example from the other day, the Ray Rice wife beating and subsequent slap on the wrist, was wholly the fault of a Left Wing anti-gun rights prosecutor. Democratic NJ State Legislators really showed their true colors when they paid lip service to the injustice of the NFL’s two game suspension, but did not say a word about the Atlantic County Prosecutor who cut him loose.

  43. Libturd in the City says:

    If I sucker punched my wife and she didn’t press charges, would I lose my job?

  44. Libturd in the City says:

    Riley Cooper on Philly is another great example of the almighty dollar trumping rationale. In the preseason last year, Cooper emphatically spit out the n word while partying in a club and not in the manner that people tend use it today. He definitely used it to be derogatory. Immediately after, the press ripped Riley Cooper and many said he would never play another game of football. The NFL penalty was that he would have to sit out one preseason game (which he would have anyway as he was injured). Then this season, the Eagles drop DeSean Jackson and elevate Cooper’s role in their offense from playing second fiddle to first. This is not that different than reincorporating Michael Vick.

    Ray Rice was a top three back in the league for three of the past four years. He’ll be back and it won’t be a big deal to anyone except the press who will have a field day with it. The NFL smartly knows that fanaticism trumps politics every time.

  45. Libturd in the City says:

    Ray Rice must be a Republican. He beats his wife!

  46. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    What do all battered women have in common?

    Expat slaps the palm of one hand with the back of the other on the last three beats:

    They…just…don’t…listen!

  47. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    Grim – Did you read Halsey’s Typhoon? It is amazing.

    Top this year were Unbroken and Lost in Shangri La, but I tend to enjoy military fiction, you don’t see it on this list, but WWII non-fiction made up a huge portion of last year’s list.

  48. Fast Eddie says:

    I can only imagine the emotional distress you leftists have endured to harbor this resentment against American ideals.

  49. jj says:

    I never battered a women but once I left a women looking like a glazed donut

    The Original NJ ExPat says:

    October 23, 2014 at 11:40 am

    What do all battered women have in common?

    Expat slaps the palm of one hand with the back of the other on the last three beats:

    They…just…don’t…listen!

  50. Ragnar says:

    Eddie, 50
    That’s why they work so hard to transform American ideals toward collectivist/statist ones. Ultimately, they would like to roll back the industrial revolution, roll back the US revolution, and keep the masses on collective subsistence compounds obeying the commands of the enlightened philosopher kings like themselves. Basically as envisioned by Plato in his Republic. Then they think the creepy envious losers like themselves will finally get the hot chicks, like the Kim family in North Korea does.

  51. Fast Eddie says:

    Ragnar [52],

    It’s as if the little muppets to the left are terrorized to swim on their own. They need to hold hands to support their short-sighted ideology; a reinforcement to convince themselves it’s ok to feel this way. I guess the feel strength in numbers. Or, perhaps it’s weakness in numbers.

  52. Ragnar says:

    Eddie, the reason they hate the concept that individuals are capable of standing on their own 2 feet is their own sense of imp0tence. Consider how often they mock the idea of “rugged individualism”. It’s an affront to their pretense of self worth. They know that they only survive as leeches, but want others to consider it a universal human characteristic.

  53. Toxic Crayons says:

    Grim, tried to post the article about Stockton College buying RE in AC, but I think it was quarantined cuz it has the word C@s1no in it. Anyway, though you would find it interesting.

  54. Toxic Crayons says:

    Huh, I said quarantined…..I must have ebola on the brain.

  55. jj says:

    IRS just announced new401k limtsf or 2015!!!

    $18,000 up from$17,500

    And for folks over 50 the “catch-up” is now $6,000 up from $5,500

    Now folks can put up to $24,000 in the 401K every year.

  56. Comrade Nom Deplume, at Peace With The Trolls says:

    [54] Ragnar,

    I think you all are overthinking the motivations of the neoliberals, or progressives, or plain old democratic soci@lists, (they are largely the same thing). Occams razor is especially apt as the simplest explanation is likely the correct one.

    It is summed up best in a bumper sticker I saw once that said “Liberalism: Envy and Arrogance Disguised As Compassion.

    No further proof is needed than when a liberal starts making a lot of money. Most, not all but most, resent the very redistributive schemes they they advocated.

  57. Zack says:

    #57

    If you are making 500K a year, 25K towards 401K is a drop in the bucket.


    IRS just announced new401k limtsf or 2015!!!

    $18,000 up from$17,500

    And for folks over 50 the “catch-up” is now $6,000 up from $5,500

    Now folks can put up to $24,000 in the 401K every year.”

  58. NJGator says:

    Can someone with GSMLS access please give me SP for 28 Herman Street in GR? It was supposed to close on or about 9/26.

    Many thanks.

  59. jj says:

    But is also means dual income couple can put up to 50K a year in a 401k. Even if you just did it from 50 to 60 that is 500K pre-tax money compounding tax free till you withdraw it in your 70s.

    I have young couples who do the max, that is 36k a year. Do that from 30-50 and that is crazy big money by your 70s.

    I dont like the fact they punish stay at home wifes. Guys like me should be able to put double in.

    Zack says:

    October 23, 2014 at 2:48 pm

    #57

    If you are making 500K a year, 25K towards 401K is a drop in the bucket.


    IRS just announced new401k limtsf or 2015!!!

    $18,000 up from$17,500

    And for folks over 50 the “catch-up” is now $6,000 up from $5,500

    Now folks can put up to $24,000 in the 401K every year.”

  60. Zack says:

    #61

    I have my wife on my payroll and I pay her a monthly check. She now can contribute the $17.5K towards 401k plus I also give her company match.

    “I dont like the fact they punish stay at home wifes. Guys like me should be able to put double in. “

  61. Ragnar says:

    Nom,
    I don’t see that dynamic among wealthy lefty investment bankers. I think their lefty politics reflects what they’ve been taught at their elite universities, read in the NY Times, and then advocate as a sort of salve to their conscience for their corrupt business practices as I bankers.

    I’ve worked with a few hard lefties in investments over the years, several were utterly corrupt and hated people, frequently ripping people off while spouting collectivist brother-love.

    Sometimes I think these online lefty advocates’ main purpose is to prevent the people you’re talking about from growing up and seeing reality with their own eyes.

  62. Pete says:

    Gator #60,

    Sold on 9/25 for $281,000.

  63. NJGator says:

    Thanks Pete!

  64. Zack says:

    I also like the 529 plans even though it after tax. You can open up multiple accounts and grow it tax free. I was told that you can open up accounts under grandkids name and sock away money.

  65. NJT says:

    Lib [38]

    “Take NJ for example… Everyone either seems to work for the government or is on the dole here.”.

    Or an H1B. They are EVERYWHERE! Well, in IT.

  66. NJT says:

    Re: Military fiction. Tom Clancy was good. Stopped reading after ‘The Bear and the Dragon’ with my fav. being ‘Without Remorse’.

    Guy is dead so no further character development (Clark was cool).

  67. John says:

    I’ve been looking to buy a house in Monmouth County and am willing to spend $500k but I’ve discovered sellers want $650k for that house. It’s been some time and sellers aren’t budging hoping price will rise to their demand. Interest rates being where they are, rising property taxes a certainty, modest wage growth – it’s difficult to imagine house prices going up anytime soon. I think this is an intermediate top with 5% – 10% downside a possibility and thus sellers will crack first. When I say “crack” I mean they will abandon the comparison to their smart neighbors that sold in 2006-2008. The numbers (it’s always the numbers) favor this outcome.

  68. Ragnar says:

    I wonder why home sellers in the US don’t use explicit auctions more often. That’s how a lot of homes sell in Australia. Instead, US real estate agents prefer to pander to pricing delusions, then leaving some homes on the market forever, while serious sellers do stealth auctions by initially pricing low to create an auction-like environment.

    It’s an old story, but covers the process:
    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-04-23/australia-turns-to-auctions-as-housing-revives-mortgages.html

    During the heyday, potential bidders, curious onlookers and neighbors often overflowed onto sidewalks or crammed into living areas to take part or witness the process. Auctions are usually held at the property itself following several weeks when the home is open for inspection.

    Serious potential buyers register their interest and fast- talking auctioneers solicit offers. If bids reach the minimum price sought, the auctioneer declares the home “on the market” and bidding continues if there’s further interest or sold to the highest bidder if there isn’t. If the maximum bid is below the seller’s lowest price, the home is “passed in” and remains unsold.

  69. joyce says:

    70
    Interesting idea. Initially, judging by some comments here, it sounds like the sellers would set their minimum price sought way above market value.

  70. homeboken says:

    Potential Ebola in NYC. Doctor working with Ebola patients in Guinea being tested at Bellevue.

    Good news is that he has only been back and out and about for the last 10 days….

  71. John says:

    71
    Auctions with a reserve price are rarely good deals – just a seller hoping for an outlier to bite or get caught up in emotion.

  72. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    I love my 401K because it’s my best control on my wife’s spending. I put the max in each year, including catchup and…I always have ~$50K of loans outstanding which further removes liquidity from my wife. Also it adds to my liquidity as I take $25K loans every 2-1/2 years with 2-1/2 year repayment terms and the $25K goes right to me while the 4.25% interest and principal repayments (x 2 loans!) takes more dollars away from my direct deposit every two weeks and goes right back into my 401K account to repeat the cycle. So every year I have another $23K+ back in in new contributions and I keep rolling over the 2.5 year loans (as you can only have 2, with a $50K max). What I really should do is take a single $50K loan with a 1 year term each year, but then I would be found out.

    IRS just announced new401k limtsf or 2015!!!

    $18,000 up from$17,500

    And for folks over 50 the “catch-up” is now $6,000 up from $5,500

    Now folks can put up to $24,000 in the 401K every year.

  73. Juice Box says:

    Re 72 – evac the upper west side!

    Or east side!

  74. chicagofinance says:

    Where? There is definitely a easy substitute for every house….

    John says:
    October 23, 2014 at 4:25 pm
    I’ve been looking to buy a house in Monmouth County and am willing to spend $500k but I’ve discovered sellers want $650k for that house. It’s been some time and sellers aren’t budging hoping price will rise to their demand. Interest rates being where they are, rising property taxes a certainty, modest wage growth – it’s difficult to imagine house prices going up anytime soon. I think this is an intermediate top with 5% – 10% downside a possibility and thus sellers will crack first. When I say “crack” I mean they will abandon the comparison to their smart neighbors that sold in 2006-2008. The numbers (it’s always the numbers) favor this outcome.

  75. Juice Box says:

    Re: #76 – probably by me……

  76. chicagofinance says:

    Was at the FPANJ conference today….totally normal guy presenting…very interesting and intense….obviously very talented……

    responsible for these great cartoons…
    http://www.behaviorgap.com/shop/

    That said, he makes a reasonable comment about keeping politics out of conversation……fine, makes sense…..then he talks about a columnist “graduating” from the WSJ to the NYT……and my reaction is everyone has a right to an opinion, but clearly this guy has a pair to say something along those lines in such a forum….then he launches into a completely non-sequitur comment about republicans and watching fox news……finally, he refers to ISIS as ISIL……dude you have to be more subtle than that……seriously…it was such a distraction and had no reason to even be brought into the presentation…..

  77. Juice Box says:

    There are studio units in the Ebola Doc’s neighborhood go for a cool $2 million.

  78. Juice Box says:

    re # John – I will give you my only opinion. You cannot get yesterday’s price today and it won’t be lower by $100K or more tomorrow. Some of us waited a long long time for any decline in the most desirable middle class neighborhoods. If you want the $500k home in the more desirable neighborhoods of Monmouth you will need to buy the fixer upper. Lock in at a low rate buy a fixer upper at whatever price you can stomach and buckle down for a ride. It is a great place to live but either way the home purchase is a guaranteed loser in the short run. In 10 years who the F knows. I for one could not continue to rent so I am now all in and I just bought a baby grand piano for my sitting room and I don’t even play the damm thing. My next investment in my home might be a rope for my tree out back if prices turn lower. That rope will not be for me..

  79. Comrade Nom Deplume, at Peace With The Trolls says:

    [79] chifi

    Hey, if he can get herds to pay $99 a pop for something I can copy in 8 seconds, power to him.

  80. Fabius Maximus says:

    #41 Rags
    Most of my books these days are consumed via audio book from the library. I have done most of Game of Thrones. 38 Discs a book for GRRM takes a while. I don’t get much time to read an actual book. If I am not working I prefer more tactile hobbies. My last book was Foucault’s Pendulum by Umberto Eco.

  81. Fabius Maximus says:

    #52 Rags

    Umm No.
    Care to cite examples and we can then discuss?

  82. Fabius Maximus says:

    #62 Zack

    You have to be very careful with that. There are two aspects that the IRS will look at.
    1) Are you paying a fair wage for the role?
    2) Would you employ anyone else in that role if the family member was not available.

    So if you have a retail store and you put your kids behind the counter, there is no problem. If the kids were not available, you would in all likelihood, employ someone else to serve customers.
    If you employ your kids or your wife to empty the trash can in your home office, not so much.

  83. Fabius Maximus says:

    #52 #54 Rags

    Umm No.
    The whole Ayn Rand debate comes down to six words “Who shovels sh1t in the Gulch?”

    I repeat my open invitation. Whenever you want to have a GTG and debate, pick a time and a place and let me know.

    I got a big laugh from Paul Ryan.
    “This is why I’m not an objectivist,” Ryan said, reacting to Oliver’s piece. “This is why I disagree with her philosophy. But I think her novels are great. I loved her novels when I was a kid. They triggered my interest in economics”

    Let me guess, he only read Ayn Rand for the Economics!

  84. Fabius Maximus says:

    #38 Lib

    And at that point it all comes down to your flavor of politics. I would rather take a progressive approach than back to the Reagan / Bush policy’s of tax cuts and deficit speding
    I had a conversation with Jamil (remember him). He bragged on about more than 50% of the country opposed the ACA. I had to point out to him that, why yes there was 37% of the right that opposed, there was also 14% of the left that did not agree with ACA as it did not go far enough.
    You seem to be falling into to the same hole. Why there maybe a hard left that hold the views that you espouse. The dems still hold the middle ground. The moderate GOP (ie the shores of this world) have disappeared. The moderate Dem position is the only game in town.
    The middle position may be better explained as, its better to invest into the population as opposed to an investment into the corporation.
    If you can invest into a person who can return that investment with their “rugged individualism” that is a lot more productive than a tax cut to a corporation that does not need it.

  85. crorkz says:

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  86. Juice Box says:

    re: # 88 – “The dems still hold the middle ground”

    Sigh…is that what you really believe?

    What if the GOP wins this election cycle? You can expect no changes in anything substantive, they won’t repeal ACA, the insurance lobby actually loves it. The only thing you can count on is if the GOP wins is there will be an acceleration of current trends namely WAR and QE.

    We are not going to vote our way out of this problem. For you see what remains for this upcoming election except for a handful of congressman and senators, is the choice between moderate conservatives, right wing conservatives and extreme right wing conservatives.

    As libtard would say Bah, Bah, Bah!

  87. Juice Box says:

    First person to start puking on the 1,2,3 train this morning wins a prize.

    http://www.nydailynews.com/

  88. Liquor Luge says:

    plume (32)-

    Nah. I think a bleeding-from-the-eyes ebola patient will be the costume du jour.

    “Wonder how many zombies I will see trick or treating this Halloween. Last year, I don’t recall seeing zombies but you have to think that this year, it will be the Costume of Choice.”

  89. Liquor Luge says:

    “I never battered a women but once I left a women looking like a glazed donut”

    And there you have it folks…post of the year!

  90. Comrade Nom Deplume, at Peace With The Trolls says:

    [86] Fabian

    Awwww, look who’s giving tax law advice. How cute!

    Anytime you wanna drop dime to the IRS, let me know. In the meantime, look up UPL.

  91. Comrade Nom Deplume, at Peace With The Trolls says:

    One of anon’s mentors got busted in Missouri . . .

    http://fox2now.com/2014/10/21/state-senator-had-loaded-gun-at-time-of-arrest-police-suspected-intoxication/

    What the story omits, but the blogosphere is all over, is that this senator routinely sponsors anon-style legislation to restrict . . .wait for it . . . Gun ownership!

  92. Juice Box says:

    Can we get a photo op of Deblasio bowling at the place the ebola doc was along with him strap hanging on the 1 train?

  93. Juice Box says:

    I wonder if Ebola Doc’s Fiancee will be calling off the wedding after she has to spend the next month locked up in Bellvue? Anybody working on the book rights yet?

  94. Comrade Nom Deplume, at Peace With The Trolls says:

    [62] zack,

    Should you have concerns based on Fabians erroneous interpretation of the law, let me know. To his credit, he flagged a real issue, but he misstates the law.

  95. Fantastic blog post. Awesome.

  96. AG says:

    Hope JJ brings some bleach to work today. Dumb ass do gooders think they are going to fix the world with a stethoscope. Now enjoy your commute.

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

    [98] errata

    After some reflection, I should clarify. Fabian set out some factors for the boba fide employment test. These are not law per se but factors that can determine compliance or flag noncompliance. They can be considered “safe harbors” but they aren’t mechanically applied. So the distinction lost on Fabian is a minor and technical one.

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