Weekend Open Discussion – Part II

Now Open, Part II!

Weekend Comp Killers!

Summit Killer Comp Killer

MLS# 2100704 – 20 Caldwell Ave
Listed: 8/15/2008
OLP: $649,900
Last List Price: $599,000
DOM: 184
Foreclosed, REO
Sold: 6/19/2008
Sale Price: $390,000

Basking Ridge Comp Killer

51 Battalion Drive
Purchased: 9/26/2005
Purchase Price: $585,000
MLS# 2505733
Sold: 6/12/2008
Sale Price: $544,000

Chatham Comp Killer

35 Edgehill Ave
Purchased: 4/26/2006
Purchase Price: $1,025,000
MLS# 2499523
Original List Price: $1,140,000
Sold: 6/20/2008
Sale Price: $985,000

Cedar Grove Comp Killer

411 Holly Lane
Purchased: 8/30/2004
Purchase Price: $564,414
MLS# 2491976
OLP: $579,900
Sold: 6/20/2008
Sale Price: $520,000

Upper Saddle River Future Comp Killer

6 Northern Drive
Purchased: 7/6/2006
Purchase Price: $1,425,000
MLS# 2814543
Listed: 4/10/2008
OLP: $1,449,000
Current Asking: $1,349,000

Ridgewood Comp Killer
635 Albert Street
Purchased: 8/17/2005
Purchase Price: $609,000
MLS# 2802116
Listed: 1/16/2008
OLP: $599,000
Sold: 6/20/2008
Sale Price: $570,000

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181 Responses to Weekend Open Discussion – Part II

  1. grim says:

    Not local, but certainly applicable. A trend to watch for in the future:

    Credit scores drop 10 times faster in South Florida

    The wave of foreclosures sweeping across South Florida is taking more than consumers’ homes. It’s battering their credit scores so low that they could takes years to mend.

    The eroding of credit scores in South Florida hasn’t been huge, but it’s happening about 10 times faster here than in the rest of the country, according to data complied by TransUnion, a Chicago-based credit monitoring company.

    Even if the real estate market recovers in a few years, a major incident can stay on a credit report for up to seven years. With the subprime lending industry all but wiped out, it will be increasingly difficult for those with poor credit to secure loans. That means their purchasing power will be diminished for items such as homes, cars, furniture and everyday purchases made with credit cards.

  2. Nom Deplume says:


    no, second.

  3. chicagofinance says:

    njpatient Says:
    June 20th, 2008 at 4:26 pm
    332 chi
    “North Philly”
    ….and West Philly

    njp: West Philly is not nice, but it is really closer to “lower middle class”…..North Philly is hardcore DMZ…..I’ll drive through West Philly to get to Main Line and Western Suburbs. There is no chance that I will go near north Philly under any circumstances. People who go to Temple are insane….

  4. grim says:

    Not that the ongoing loss of manufacturing jobs in NJ is really news anymore:

    Rohm & Haas announces 70 job cuts in New Jersey

  5. bairen says:

    #1 grim,

    Not surprising. If you read American Express’ Annual Report they tell you their spike in charge offs is in the same geographical areas as the bursting housing bubble. I listened to the conf call and laughed when the AX guy said they have 2.5 billion in MBS that are triple AAA, pauses and said “whatever that’s worth”. You could hear the audience laughing.

  6. grim says:

    From MarketWatch:

    Moody’s downgrades FGIC and XLCA; outlook negative

    Moody’s Investors Service late Friday lowered the insurance financial strength ratings of FGIC Corp. and its main subsidiaries, including Financial Guaranty Insurance, to B1 from Baa3 and cut FGIC Corp.’s senior debt ratings to Caa2 from B3. The ratings agency also slashed the insurance financial strength ratings of XL Capital Assurance Inc. and XL Financial Assurance Ltd. to B2 from A3 and cut Security Capital Assurance Ltd.’s debt ratings to Ca from B3.

  7. Curmudgeon says:

    My comment was on your “spread out” comment on per capita statistics. I lived in JP for a spell. MA State tax kills anybody below $200 vs. NJ. We are right at that point and pay squat to Jersey vs. 10K in MA. Of course, we both max 401 and have pre-tax health and childcare…

    The MA flat tax is strangely regressive. Doesn’t compute.

    Whatever; have a great weekend.

  8. BC Bob says:

    “People who go to Temple are insane….”


    A reflection of their former basketball coach?


  9. grim says:

    From the Star Ledger:

    Panel approves borrowing $3.9 billion for school construction

    The Assembly Budget Committee today voted for legislation allowing the state to borrow $3.9 billion for school construction without seeking approval from the voters.

    Assemblyman Albert Coutinho (D-Essex), the bill’s sponsor, said the $3.9 billion borrowing plan is necessary to address serious deficiencies at dozens of schools, to meet the Supreme Court’s order to repair them, and to give the state’s economy a shot in the arm.

    “This bill will provide some real stimulus to our economy,” Coutinho said. He called the bill a “critical investment in the main infrastructure our state has, which of course is our children.”

  10. chicagofinance says:

    Regarding companies affected by real estate that you wouldn’t expect:
    Any restaurant or food service located in the middle of troubled developments (e.g. Starbucks). R.R. Donnelly makes phone books….people don’t need new phone books when they aren’t moving…less advertising…etc.

  11. chicagofinance says:

    BC Bob Says:
    June 20th, 2008 at 5:26 pm
    “People who go to Temple are insane….”
    Chi, A reflection of their former basketball coach? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=51-4sJTf7iQ

    Meet the Men’s Basketball Coach – October 10
    You’ve probably heard by now that Cornell’s men’s basketball team, led by coach Steve Donahue, finished the 2007-08 at the top of the Ivy League, with a spot at the NCAA tournament. Donahue led the Big Red to a historic season, setting school records for most wins overall (22) and longest win streak (16) while posting the 13th undefeated Ivy League season in conference history.

    Coach Donahue will be our speaker at this fall’s CCMO Members’ Party on Friday evening, October 10, 2008. More details later…

  12. spazz says:

    Lancaster Ave in West Philly is lower middle class? Lower middle urban blight, maybe.

  13. grim says:

    From MarketWatch:

    MBIA needs $2.9 bln for potential termination payments

    MBIA: May have to post $4.5B in collateral after downgrade

  14. jam says:

    Hey did anyone mention Irvington yet – it really is quite the sh!thole.

  15. rhymingrealtor says:

    To: Thatbigwindow,

    You asked a question yesterday regarding the market in South Bergen, I think I answered it, however there was over 400 comments yesterday when I tried to check back and over 300 today! I don’t know if you wanted more info. I will try to check this thread tonight if we are not up to 500 by the time I come home.


  16. Tom says:

    Ok, there was some strange activity to my server from mexico. If it didn’t translate correctly let me specifically say what I said about using the bailout money if we didn’t have the housing crisis to invade mexico WAS A JOKE.

  17. bairen says:

    #10 “This bill will provide some real stimulus to our economy,”

    By stimulus does he mean lining the pockets of cronies and in-laws of our beloved government with a good deal of that 3.9 billion?

  18. njpatient says:

    oh boy
    this is going to be a long and miserable night.

  19. willwork4beer says:

    #3 ChiFi

    People who go to Temple are insane….

    It wasn’t too bad in the day. Mostly just crackheads trying to score some cash for another fix. After dark, it was pop-pop-pop-pop. And I ain’t talking Orville Redenbacher.

    When I asked a classmate who was a Philly native what they called the neighborhood east of Temple University Hospital he told me he never heard of it referred to by anything but “the badlands”.

  20. skep-tic says:

    f- south florida, f- vegas, f- southern cali. Honestly, is it a surprise that these places are crashing hardest? they are filled with the most vapid, superficial people on the planet.

  21. Laughing all the way says:

    Putting my “Dow 10,000″ hat back on…

    from the other weekend thread …
    i mentioned this once on another blog (after seeing it here, obviously) and was lambasted … i’ll reserve my ‘told-ya-so’ glee for when we get close to the 10k

  22. t c m says:

    #49 – lisoosh

    -Warning to everyone else, this could be a boring post-

    re: my job search/return to work –

    before i left my career to take care of my kids, i was in fixed income institutional sales downtown.

    i left when the kids were very young for several reasons, but basically, i was always very tired, and i just wasn’t happy with farming out every aspect of my life so i could work.

    anyway, when the kids got bigger, i took a lower level part-time job that allowed me the flexibility when i needed it.

    around 2 years ago i moved back to the nyc area, and started looking for work on wall st. i read in the wsj about these programs for women who had “off-ramped” (which means left the work force to take care of family etc) – i went to 2 events given by major wall st firms in the last year, and applied through these programs, talked to recruiters and basically got my hopes up that something would come through. bottom line ——– nothing.

    i don’t know………i got the feeling that these programs were more of a PR ploy than a sincere effort to recruit “bright women who left the workforce to care for family”, but i could be wrong – afterall, wall st pretty much fell apart as i was involved in these programs.

    anyway, i took a position for a financial firm here in nj. it’s no where near the position i had when i initially left to take care of the kids, but that’s fine – it’s interesting, close to home, and if i need flexibility, i can get it -( i still have 2 of my 3 kids in high school). so, when i gave you the advice last night, it’s really my thought process for myself.

    anyway – good luck with whatever you choose

  23. House Hunter says:

    22 Laughing, I think it could go lower…I really get hit when I say that…

  24. bi says:

    in 7 months, we will have a new president and new presidential seal:


  25. WakaWaka says:

    This site is a gold mine, luv it! Does anyone follow the downtown Jersey City market?

  26. Laughing all the way says:

    Q: Is there any point in finding out your credit score 6-7 months before starting to seriously look hard?

    I dont know about you guys, but we’re eager to begin really looking. We’re making note of some places we like and how slow (or fast) their prices are falling.

    Spring of 09 can’t get here fast enough

    (oh yeah, buying in Bucks County)

  27. alia says:

    27: yes, because then you have time to “fix” it. (if there are errors, or to work hard at getting it higher.) …at least, that’s what i’ve been told elsewhere.

  28. Essex says:

    3….my wife is a Temple grad…..5’9″ blonde who used to ride her bicycle through a barrage of thrown bottles to Temple U. She is amazing.

  29. grim says:

    From the NY Times:

    Banks Trimming Limits for Many on Credit Cards

    The easy money that led Americans to depend on credit cards to pay their bills is starting to dry up.

    After fostering the explosive growth of consumer debt in recent years, financial companies are reducing the credit limits on cards held by millions of Americans, often without warning.

    Banks that issue cards like Visa and MasterCard, as well as the American Express Company, are cutting the limits for customers who have run up big debts, live in areas that have been hit hard by the housing crisis or work for themselves in troubled industries.

    The reductions come as consumers, squeezed by a slack economy, a weak housing market and rising unemployment, are falling behind on monthly credit card payments in growing numbers.

    Credit card lenders are also culling their accounts ahead of new rules that are intended to benefit consumers but could limit the profits on customers deemed bigger risks.

  30. bairen says:

    #30 The banks are reducing credit card lines yet are not stopping people from buying and bailing on houses. Which one is worse for the banks?

  31. Salty Steve says:

    This is just a fyi…

    We’re a buyer and we’re out there.

    After a failed attempt at a cherry colonial in Livingston. It was listed at 449k in March 2008. We bid 406k within days of it’s listing and the agent said we were the lowest of 4 offers. The house sold for 450k. No suprise given the specs on the house.

    We are at it again. Looking at a house in Florham Park. Playing the bid/response game right now. So far about 2 weeks have passed and the seller is still talking to us even though were about 75k below asking price.

    Times have changed in the last 4 months or so. 4 months ago, times were challinging, now it’s worse.

    That’s my view, enjoy.


  32. njpatient says:

    Where is my recession?!

  33. Happy Camper says:

    “my wife is a Temple grad…..5′9″ blonde who used to ride her bicycle through a barrage of thrown bottles to Temple U. She is amazing.”

    any pics available?


  34. skep-tic says:

    patient– I am in the same boat. still, it’s far better than the alternative

  35. skep-tic says:

    is it true that mortgage lenders count your entire credit limit on your credit cards as debt, even if you have zero actual balance?

  36. chicagofinance says:

    njpatient Says:
    June 20th, 2008 at 10:24 pm
    Where is my recession?!

    njp: The Whole Foods in Middletown has a series of signs with insipid platitudes hung in their front windows.

    The one closest to the entrance reads “…price that enlighten, not frighten…” THERE IS YOUR RECESSION!

  37. Essex says:

    34….tons. She modeled in details magazine once.

  38. skep-tic says:


    were you the guy who was a stay at home dad too? if so, between the two of these, you have basically mastered life

  39. d2b says:

    Temple University- BA in Risk Management and Insurance, 1995. I never had any problems. I lived in Manayunk and commuted. All of the trouble makers sleep all day and are up all night. Temple has a real nice campus in Ambler PA as well.

  40. schlivo says:

    “People who go to Temple are insane….”

    Isn’t that aniti-semitic?

  41. prtraders2000 says:


    Whaddya mean? I’m ready to hire them to decorate my place. But only if I get the OB1 cutout.

  42. njpatient says:

    Well, there’s another week shot to hell

  43. njpatient says:

    35 skep

    I suppose, though sometimes I wonder.

  44. njpatient says:

    No one up late partying?

  45. njpatient says:

    No one up late partying?

  46. grim says:

    From the APP:

    Economic forecast remains cloudy

    New Jersey’s economy, weighed down by the faltering housing market, rising inflation and an expensive business climate, is expected to remain in a slump at least for the rest of the year, a Rutgers University economist said Friday.

    James W. Hughes, dean of Rutgers’ Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy, said the fuel of the recent economic expansion — access to cheap credit — has evaporated. And there is little to suggest a turnaround anytime soon.

    “A sharp economic rebound is certainly not in the cards,” Hughes said. “New Jersey will be facing serious national economic headwinds for the foreseeable future.”

    His speech came amid economic uncertainty. While not technically in a recession, there are abundant signs the economy is struggling. New Jersey, for example, lost 10,900 jobs during the first five months of the year, the state reported earlier this week.

    Hughes said the nation is facing an increasingly long list of problems: The housing market continues to collapse after a prolonged bubble. Financial institutions burned by bad loans have tightened their lending standards. Gasoline prices have skyrocketed. Food prices are rising.

    And consumers, burdened by debt, may have to rein in their spending, he said.

    “We’ve been maintaining our standard of living the old-fashioned way — by borrowing,” Hughes said.

    New Jersey, once a magnet for high-tech, high-paying jobs, has encountered tough times on its own. The state’s economy has paid the price for New Jersey’s high cost of living, structural budget deficit, corruption and poor reputation, Hughes said.

    The result: During the expansion from 2004 to 2006, the state added an average of 23,000 jobs a year, or about one-third of the jobs the state added during expansions in the 1980s and 1990s, Hughes said.

  47. grim says:

    From the WSJ:

    The FHA Time Bomb
    June 21, 2008; Page A8
    Well, this certainly is embarrassing. The Federal Housing Administration – the very agency the Bush Administration and Congress trumpet as the solution to the mortgage crisis – has announced that it suffered a $4.6 billion loss last year. This is one of the worst financial performances ever for the government’s multibillion-dollar mortgage insurer.

    We’d hope this news might cause Congress to reconsider its plans to turn over some $300 billion of troubled loans to an agency already in financial distress. No such luck. A bill passed by the House and now being debated on the Senate floor would expand the FHA portfolio to about 1.5 million mostly high-risk subprime mortgages. So at the very time private lenders and investors are fleeing subprime markets, Congress wants taxpayers to dive in.

    The most reckless provision now on the Senate floor would allow the FHA to take over risky subprime loans from private banks. When FHA Commissioner Brian Montgomery announced the agency’s losses last week, he warned that Congress’s subprime loan bailout could plunge FHA deeper into the red. Senate Banking staffers tell us that lenders have all but admitted that, if the bailout becomes law, they will dump their worst loans onto the FHA.

    Among the likely dumpers: Countrywide Financial, which gave Senate Banking Chairman Chris Dodd a bargain mortgage. The Congressional Budget Office predicted this month that 35% of these loans could go sour.

    Yet Congress is putting the political imperative of “doing something” about housing above the risks of tens of billions of dollars in taxpayer losses. The White House has waxed and waned in its support for this exercise, and late last week issued a statement saying President Bush might veto it. He could do worse than heed Kentucky Senator Jim Bunning, who warns: “As soon as we finish this bailout for banks and borrowers, the next taxpayer bailout will be of the FHA.”

  48. grim says:

    From the NYT:

    Fighting Foreclosure on Staten Island

    “IF you’re in New York City and you want to learn about the rest of America, you should come look at Staten Island,” says Jonathan R. Peters, an associate professor of finance at the City University of New York’s College of Staten Island.

  49. grim says:

    Ridgewood Comp Killer

    635 Albert Street

    Purchased: 8/17/2005
    Purchase Price: $609,000

    MLS# 2802116
    Listed: 1/16/2008
    OLP: $599,000

    Sold: 6/20/2008
    Sale Price: $570,000

  50. grim says:

    Upper Saddle River Future Comp Killer

    6 Northern Drive

    Purchased: 7/6/2006
    Purchase Price: $1,425,000

    MLS# 2814543
    Listed: 4/10/2008
    OLP: $1,449,000

    Current Asking: $1,349,000

    (Note: What happened? I thought Upper Saddle River was bubblewrapped?)

  51. grim says:

    Cedar Grove Comp Killer

    411 Holly Lane

    Purchased: 8/30/2004
    Purchase Price: $564,414

    MLS# 2491976
    OLP: $579,900

    Sold: 6/20/2008
    Sale Price: $520,000

  52. grim says:

    Chatham Comp Killer

    35 Edgehill Ave

    Purchased: 4/26/2006
    Purchase Price: $1,025,000

    MLS# 2499523
    Original List Price: $1,140,000

    Sold: 6/20/2008
    Sale Price: $985,000

  53. grim says:

    Basking Ridge Comp Killer

    51 Battalion Drive

    Purchased: 9/26/2005
    Purchase Price: $585,000

    MLS# 2505733

    Sold: 6/12/2008
    Sale Price: $544,000

  54. grim says:

    Basking Ridge Comp Killer #2

    17 Georgetown Court

    Purchased: 12/14/2005
    Purchase Price: $780,000

    MLS# 2477906

    Sold: 6/20/2008
    Sale Price: $770,000

  55. grim says:

    Summit Killer Comp Killer

    MLS# 2100704 – 20 Caldwell Ave
    Listed: 8/15/2008
    OLP: $649,900
    Last List Price: $599,000
    DOM: 184

    Foreclosed, REO

    Sold: 6/19/2008
    Sale Price: $390,000

  56. Essex says:

    38….no I work…but did many tech gigs (including two IPOs) which meant some sweet ‘time off’ cycles back when the tech firms folded, gave packages….and then repeated the same process over and over again….

  57. Essex says:

    58…Wow! People really do win on MTV.

  58. grim says:

    Foreclosures in upper class Bergen County? Impossible..

    Sheriff Num Sale Date Address City JUDGEMENT
    761904 6/27/2008 25 BURNING HOLLOW ROAD SADDLE RIVER $2,403,957.10
    761973 7/25/2008 20 PIKE STREET ALPINE $1,573,485.58
    762754 9/19/2008 17 ADAMS DRIVE CRESSKILL $1,405,008.81
    762572 7/11/2008 275 CANTERBURY DRIVE RAMSEY $1,176,763.82
    762673 8/22/2008 318 NORTH MIDLAND AVENUE SADDLE BROOK $1,172,465.29
    762583 7/18/2008 119 HUDSON COVE EDGEWATER $1,140,533.50
    762523 7/11/2008 320 LYNN DRIVE FRANKLIN LAKES $1,124,390.02
    762553 10/3/2008 306 IVY COURT FRANKLIN LAKES $1,087,743.38
    762411 6/20/2008 1022 PALISADE AVENUE FORT LEE $1,080,244.47
    762528 6/20/2008 374 VAN EMBURGH AVENUE RIDGEWOOD $1,069,657.14
    762632 8/1/2008 13 ARTHUR COURT CLOSTER $1,040,435.46
    762334 8/1/2008 16 ORATAM ROAD UP SADDLE RIVER $1,037,603.58
    762639 8/8/2008 385 ELKWOOD TER., ENGLEWOOD $1,035,519.20
    762602 7/25/2008 25 8TH STREET FAIRVIEW $1,029,107.79
    762320 7/11/2008 15 STONYBROOK ROAD TENAFLY $1,024,107.51
    762413 6/27/2008 203 SOUTH VAN DIEN AVENUE RIDGEWOOD $992,051.73
    762595 7/25/2008 145 HEATHER HILL ROAD CRESSKILL $981,039.13
    762675 8/29/2008 2207 JONES ROAD FORT LEE $904,609.93

  59. willwork4beer says:


    Here’s one for you:

    MLS# 2504494

    512 LOCUST RD Readington Twp

    Purchased: 09/14/04
    Purchase Price: $549,000

    Sold: 6/17/2008
    Sale Price: $410,000

    Bank owned REO

  60. grim says:

    Leaked documents from Bank of America:


    Rumor has it that BoA is playing a critical role in determining the policy behind the FHA modernization legislation.

    Interesting that their base case assumption is that housing prices will continue to fall until 2010. I don’t hear BoA talking about that in public.

  61. Secondary Market says:

    in re temple.
    i’m going to an informational breakfast in a couple of weeks for the part time mba program. thankfully they now have a small center city campus, err, building where classes will be held. regardless, the price is 76k for the 2 year program. maybe i can get a discount if i request class to be in norff philly.

  62. willwork4beer says:


    Here’s another – condo this time.

    MLS#: 2511467

    1903 WILSHIRE CT Hillsborough Twp

    Purchased: 11/17/05
    Purchase Price: $260,000

    Sold: 06/18/2008
    Sale Price: $193,000

    Corporate owned

  63. ruggles says:

    Here’s my anecdotal evidence on the state of the real estate / mortgage industry in New Jersey. I am a real estate agent and this is my story.

    My partner and I are probably considered almost perfect buyers. Our combined fico scores are 790, we had 200k cash and no house to sell (we sold a couple of months ago and rented a friends house), plenty of income, little debt, etc–we ended up getting approved with 4 banks in an attempt to buy our house.

    The subject house is a 1790s/1880s 4 bed 1.5 bath house in Hunterdon County on 2 acres with barn for just over $300k. House is in great condition, perfectly liveable. it needs an updated kitchen and bath but thats it.

    There are only 3 other houses within view of the house. the closest is about 250 feet away, the other two are 1000+ feet away. We have a creek, waterfall, meadow, forest, a quiet road, valley and pond views and are within 7 minutes of rt 78.

    The first bank we went to gave us a mortgage commitment for everything except the appraisal. The appraisal had 5 homes all in the same township as the subject. the issue was that there were no similar sales within 1 mile within 6 months of our house. So they denied the loan. The truth is that there were close recent sales but they were for houses in the $500k to 2,500k price ranges and were not included in the appraisal.

    The second bank got our original appraisal but discounted it completely and did their own. they used comps in the same zip code but all in an adjacent boro (where lot sizes are small and taxes are minimum $1000/year higher). So they valued the home 10% less than we were in contract for. I believe that they purposely looked for the smallest, cheapest homes in the zip code regardless of whether or not they were comps in order to reduce their risk (all of the comps included were 3+ miles away).

    Our options were to apply to another bank–we contacted 2 others–both suggested by the sellers agent (because the sellers were starting to think that we were the problem and not that their house was overpriced)–and were approved. Or to put 30% down to cover the bank’s lower estimate. Or to get the sellers to drop the price (and they had already bought another house). Or to fight the appraisal with more comps.

    We decided to put 30% down because, after looking in all of Warren, Somerset, Morris, Hunterdon and Sussex for a year for the perfect combination of location, setting and house (thats how long it took to sell our house), we knew that this house was 100% worth it.

    I cannot find another house like it, this close to (or even farther from) Manhattan, for under $400k and I would defy anyone to else to try. I actually don’t think we could replace this house, location, and setting for under $500k.

    In fact a very similar home 2 miles from us on a much busier road with only 1 bath and 1 acre and a parking lot right next door was recently listed for about $100k more than we paid. I hope buyers and banks don’t use our house for a comp.

    So I don’t care if I’ve overpaid or the market is going to crash further (well, i care professionally but not personally). But I am concerned that if I can’t get a mortgage for a no-brainer, how many other sales aren’t happening when ready, willing and able buyers are trying to purchase homes in NJ. Thanks all.

  64. Pat says:

    ruggles, the market is the market.

    If your property were truly worth what you think it is, don’t you think that cash buyers would be all over it like flies on spit?

  65. R Patrick says:


    I’m sorry you were looking for the “forever house” good luck

  66. jack says:

    poor ruggles

  67. Clotpoll says:

    Hoo boy! I sold my old house in Spring, 2005 (asked 365K, got 365K). Today, it hit the market for 419K…no additions, renovations, nothing.

    They ain’t going anywhere.

  68. Pat says:

    Ruggles, I’m not trying to give you grief. You don’t need to justify your purchase. You need a place to live, and you found a place you like. Enjoy it.

    However, as a real estate agent, do not attempt to replace the facts of the market with your emotional viewpoints or rationalizations. It’s neither appropriate for any potential clients who might need to rely on your advice, nor for your own needs to make rational decisions about future investments in the property.

    Here’s what I mean. Let’s say I have $350k in my little old money market. ;)

    Houses are listing for x plus $100k around your gem. Why wouldn’t I just snap that little money maker up, and sell it?

    I can’t make that kind of return on my cash anywhere else today. I’m ready, willing and able to buy that Hunterdon property.

    Why wouldn’t I buy it? I work just north of Princeton. Good commute. Bad OBGYN situation, but O.K. commute.

    Or Investor David? He needs a nice little place for himself for when his kid goes to Lawrenceville.

  69. Joeycasz says:

    Hey did anyone mention Irvington yet – it really is quite the sh!thole.

    When ever my father and i would drive through South Orange Ave/Springfield Ave he would tell stories of how great it used to be, and they just seem impossible when you drive through it now.

  70. PeaceNow says:

    News briefs from the shore:

    It seems that a major independent builder/contractor here went kaput, taking all the un-hung doors for a house he was building with him….. Meanwhile, prices on fixer-uppers continue to drop like stones being tossed in the Grand Canyon—and still no buyers…. Big new house across the street has been price-chopped by 100K and is now listed at the same price of an offer that was rejected eight months ago…. No one will come look at this piece of antique furniture I’m trying to sell through craigslist (cheap) cause of the price of gas….

  71. willwork4beer says:


    MLS#: 2467123

    134 KETCHAM RD Montgomery Twp

    Purchased: 08/26/05
    Purchase Price: $675,000

    Sold: 06/20/2008
    Sale Price: $655,000

  72. njrebear says:

    Captain Dodd coming to the rescue of BAC!

    Senate ignores ethics problems with tainted mortgage bill

    The Senate voted 70-to-11 against a motion by Sens. Jim Bunning, R-Ky. and Jim DeMint, R-S.C., that would have sent the measure back to committee. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., attacked the Bunning-DeMint motion, saying it would “delay the Senate in providing relief to American families.”

    Isn’t Reid himself in the middle of a real estate scam?

  73. Clotpoll says:

    ruggles (66)-

    You just described almost every deal that comes over the transom in my office these days. All I do is fight with banks and appraisers.

    The big “secret” about this market is just how many people in a position like yours end up not buying. Simply put, the banks are so damaged, they don’t want to make loans. Every spare penny they can cadge goes toward repair of the balance sheet. Increasingly, it is also becoming obvious that the banks totally understand there’s going to be another severe drop in prices before this whole thing hits rock bottom.

    It may turn out that the banks who survive this debacle will be the ones who aren’t making the loans right now, in the marking of time before the next big price drop.

  74. rhymingrealtor says:


    Without all the facts I can’t totally dispute you and say ruggles has a point, but it seems to me that the house is unusual, so buying and flipping would not be a good option because you would be playing to such a small audience. It seems the banks were looking for an exact comp and could not get it so they denied, as is the climate of the mortgage market. Two years ago any excuse to give the mortgage was found, it seems in this case any excuse to not give mortgages are looked for. Is’nt always said the corrections overshoots?


  75. Clotpoll says:

    Pat (67)-

    Cash buyers? Har!

    Cash buyers are like sleeping bears in the dead of Winter right now. They know better than to wake up and go out until everything is nice and warm and sunny.

    The cash buyers will begin to appear at the same time as:

    1. Grim’s wife sees blood in the streets.
    2. BC Bob starts lacing up his boots.

    Until then, the only cash buyers out there will be the ones who are about to be parted from their cash.

  76. BC Bob says:

    “This site is a gold mine”


    Have you visited the mine? Previously, this site was known as the New Jersey Vulture Fund. JB branched out, hired some geologists and dirt bags/diggers, right from this site. The first deposits will be extracted within the next few weeks.

  77. Frank says:

    grim, besides the REO, none of these homes are com killers, when you can still sell 1M home in Chatham or 500K townhome in Basking Ridge for little discount, the market is still hot. I don’t care what you say, the RE market is still on fire in NJ. Or show us better comp killers.

  78. 3b says:

    #33 njpatient: It’s here my child.

  79. Frank says:

    willwork4beer, 20K off on a home that’s overpriced by 350K is not a comp killer. When the price goes back to the 1993 level, then talk to me.

  80. BC Bob says:

    “I don’t care what you say, the RE market is still on fire in NJ.”


    I agree, past bogus gains are going up in smoke.

  81. Clotpoll says:

    Please pardon Frank. He’s been drinking all night.

  82. njpatient says:

    63 grim

    Lovely weather today! Have you been outside?

  83. njpatient says:

    “#33 njpatient: It’s here my child.”

    Can you please inform my clients? I’d like to go to bed this year.

  84. njpatient says:

    “When the price goes back to the 1993 level, then talk to me.”

    Pity I won’t every be talking to Frank again.

  85. njpatient says:

    “JB branched out, hired some geologists and dirt bags/diggers, right from this site.”

    Hey – if he hires me, he’ll need one less dirt-bag.

  86. Pat says:

    KL, I guess my view is off after ten years in Bucks. Ruggles just described about half of this area like nobody has a big backyard with an old barn in their back yard.

    I watch all the auction sites and it’s just not a property type that’s anywhere near value yet.

  87. 3b says:

    #86 njpatient: Never mind. I did not have my coffeee whn I posted that. I finally got your point.

  88. Pat says:

    And I’m outside unrolling the hose and dragging the tank vac and extension cord to the car because I’m too lazy to drive to the carwash. Sweating and $4.50 gas makes every far drive property look overpriced to me right now.

  89. 3b says:

    #80 Frank: I do not understand your thought process.

  90. Fiddy Cents on the Dollar says:

    ruggles :66

    The problem was there are no “true” comparable sales to your 1880’s colonial on 2 acres. The banks have swung the pendelum to the opposite extreme….2 years ago they would loan money to anyone who could fog a mirror. Now 790 FICO’s and 200K cash assets are not enough!

    Bank #1 wanted comparable sales within 1 mile and 6 months….simply ain’t possible with a house of that nature. Bank #2 went 3 miles away to find low end sales that weren’t comparable to your house, just to downgrade the appraisal.

  91. willwork4beer says:

    82 Frank

    After three years, the price dropped 20K. That’s a lot better than the 385K it increased in the 8 years prior to 2005. Does the market have a long way to go before prices are reasonable again? Yes. But at least its moviing in the right direction.

  92. Essex says:

    Lots and lots of pain….but someone might actually start getting into some nice areas at decent prices. So much for the free ride though.

  93. Laughing all the way says:

    pat, i dont know how closely you’ve looked at newtown, but any thoughts on this house?


    (if link doesn’t work, MLS 5282683)

    the big hook, in our opinion, is the backyard. love newtown grant, but most places for sale have no yard. looks like this place has some room, though i’d be curious where the yard extends.

    what’s odd about sales in this neighborhood is that on zillow, there are only comps from 2007.


    any idea where to find more recent comps?

  94. Laughing all the way says:

    in moderation?

  95. skep-tic says:

    Frank, seriously, what planet are you living on. Sales are dropping month over month in prime selling season. Year over year drops in sales are massive and compounding (40% over 2007; 2007 dropped 20% from 2006). Sellers are clearly living in fanstasy land and are not willing or able to accept that the market is way lower than what they are asking. So there are very few deals happening right now and inventory continues to grow. And a lot of inventory hitting right now is coming from banks, who are not so delusional. Oh, and to pile on, Wall St. is in a sh*tstorm at the moment and everyone with any sense is wondering whether he/she will have a job next month. So there goes your mythical rich buyers that everyone is perpetually hoping will ride in on a white horse and pay asking price and which the NYTimes writes about every week as if there were an endless supply. If you are in the real estate business (which I suspect you are, otherwise how could you be this delusional) you need for your own sake to wake up. This is a full blown real estate crash that we are witnessing right now, like nothing before in our lifetimes.

  96. njpatient says:


    (I am such a rebel!)

  97. willwork4beer says:

    Sign of the times:


    DOM 57

    Lotsa luck. They are trying to get >10% over 2004 purchase…

  98. watergapnomad says:

    @97 skep-tic

    Do you think that housing prices are going to fall all the way back down to pre-bubble (2001) prices? And if so, do you think that will occur in all or the majority of towns?

    Prices in my area (Nutley, Clifton, Lyndhurst) seem to have stalled from their previous fall. I’d say the median price in this area is around $380K, down from around $450K+ two years ago.

    But, in 2000, that median price was closer to $200K. I’m not sure that prices will drop down that much. I’m thinking that $280-$300K might be the floor around here.

  99. jmacdaddio says:


    I agree on a floor, at least in nominal terms. This government will do whatever it takes to keep the party going. We’re in an inflationary cycle and while house prices may stagnate, everything else is headed up. In real terms with 10% annual inflation houses may go back to pre-bubble levels, but I am strictly an armchair economist. Even though I am soon closing on a property, I’m not thinking of it as an investment or the cornerstone of my financial planning – it’s a financially sensible way to put a roof over my head.

  100. auggie says:

    Here’s one from Morristown that is almost back to 2001

    57 Revere Road

    08/07/01 Sales Price $369,900

    05/23/05 Sales Price $432,000

    05/21/08 Sales Price $385,000

  101. ruggles says:

    Thanks all, i’ve reconsidered and realized that I did overpay. So if you want to help me find a better house for 300k in hunterdon feel free! i couldnt find one.

    I need an antique home with at least an acre and privacy. water of some kind (pond, creek, river, pool) is a plus and this house has a brand new septic so that would also be nice. Without giving too much away I’m within 15 minutes from Oldwick so I’d prefer a similar neighborhood.

    really though, I am a sort of house flipper and have several properties along rt 78. except that I hold them for 2-5 years and renovate or rent depending on the location. I do believe that a flipper should have purchased this house and they all missed out.

    maybe the listing wasn’t descriptive enough, the pictures were definitely terrible and I didnt even come to see it for 6 months because it looked dumpy in the pics. it was also listed as a 20th century house although its definitely 1790s-1886. there were no pics of the land. Plus the sellers weren’t that desparate so it wasnt a firesale price but it was a bargain.

    I would say an investment of $40,000 (updated kitchen, double the size of the bath, and remove the siding and repair the wood or replace with cedar clapboards) and it would sell for about $400k(if someone could get a mortgage). I just did this with the house I sold–an 1825 stone Georgian–so I know the costs. My partner and I absolutely believe the sellers left money on the table by not redoing the kitchen and bath.

    Anyway, the point of the story was about the frustrations of the mortgage process not about how house proud I am. I did feel like a loser who couldnt get a loan. Eventhough I’ve had more than 20 mortgages in my life. I even refinanced one of my rentals last November and had absolutely no problems. Really, the issue is that all the antique homes around here are 2-4 times the size of mine (they’ve all been restored and updated) so they sell much higher and aren’t true comps of the existing condition of mine.

    My mort broker was great but like the writer above had to fight constantly about the comps and in the end it didnt matter. Since I am a flipper, I believe I’ll have a hard time taking advantage of the buyers market and try to acquire more properties in the next couple of years.

    As for the person from Bucks/Princeton–Pat, is it? I just moved here from a village 1 mile from the Delaware River and I did most of my business in Bucks so I actually know that market better than this one. go ahead and find me this house there for $300k. A 1-2 bedroom antique home on an acre in Bucks can go for up to $400-500, especially near New Hope, Lumberville and Carversville. This area is exactly like Solebury/Tinicum but with a lot more money and we’re 10 minutes from the express bus to Manhattan.

    And finally, a word about flipping antique homes–you are right that the market is small but the secret is to restore and keep the home as close to historically accurate as possible. NO VINYL SIDING, NO HARDWARE STORE KITCHENS, NO OFF THE SHELF LIGHTING FIXTURES, NO CARPETING IN MAIN LIVING AREAS. The modern conveniences don’t have to be high end just comfortable and/or hidden. The restored antique home market is actually more insulated from fluctuations than the mcmansion/development market. As long as the house isn’t priced way over the general market for antique homes in the town in which its located people will want it.

    So all you haters can lay off. I’m going down by the creek with my dogs to enjoy the day and plant some flowers. thanks and I’ll go back to lurking now.

  102. 3b says:

    #97 skeptic:This is a full blown real estate crash that we are witnessing right now, like nothing before in our lifetimes.

    I witnessed one before, in fact I lived through it. But you are right this one is turning out to be far worse.

  103. 3b says:

    #101 The government is all out of tricks.

  104. Pat says:

    Being pissed off is fine. Go cry in your petunias. But nobody hates you, dear.

    When you make the following assertions:

    1. I’m a real estate agent.
    2. I could not get a loan and had to cough up equity.
    3. My property is so special that it is worth more than I paid.

    Then you need to be willing to eat your comeuppance.

    If you’re the flipper you say, then you know what I said is true. Cash buyers don’t care about financing, only about bang for the buck. And if nobody’s buying it, there’s no bang. You overpaid.

  105. Hobokenite says:

    So all you haters can lay off.

    Is that Casey?

  106. Hobokenite says:

    Just kidding Ruggles. Hope you enjoy your new place. Sounds nice.

  107. Laughing all the way says:

    grim 96 in moderation

  108. njpatient says:

    The wine selection at Applebees is not nearly as good as at Ruby Tuesday’s

  109. House Hunter says:

    75 njrebear…the gov’t is not going to let the market work here…if they go in and scoop up all the foreclosures what incentive do the REO asset mgt companies have in selling it to you for 20-50% on the dollar? Another arena to spread the corruption I am afraid. And they will all have their hand in it. I wonder if the gumb”mint” even realizes the damage of these actions…The only thing the short run we can push for is term limits on all seats…. not that is would solve everything.

  110. House Hunter says:

    76 Clot..good information, I am just confounded on a few issues. If a buyer has no contingencies and cash (at least 20%) not sure where the risk is, it hedges the down turn and gives the banks/mortgage co’s cash in hand for their books. My theory is the above….why take a deal today when next week the gub”mint” will save you.

    Or…is it so much worse than they want people to believe?
    I tend to think that I pay a little more attention than the average joe, not that I am smarter or better by any means, just trying to get to the truth. I just feel with all the compelling information within our reach, I more and more comfortable taking the contrarian role with all things financial in 2008-09. My office mates and brothers think that I am crazy for parking about 60% of my 401 in cash related instruments….

  111. House Hunter says:

    99 willwork4beer, just the kind of thing most folks would go for….I heard a story of guy who just signed on a 55+ year old SFH, original speptic, not sure of the well for $325,000…he makes 80,000, which is 4x his salary. Limited money down and 7,000 taxes. Grab the anchor buddy…and someone is willing to give him a loan.

  112. njpatient says:

    “there’s no bang. You overpaid”

    Disagree. Ruggles is definitely getting banged.

  113. Tom says:

    I like the line in the FHA pdf that says bail-out will only be acceptable if it isn’t a perceived bailout of the bond market.

    The FHA knew about inflated house prices as early as 2001. If they wanted to not have to worry about a bail-out, they should have acted sooner. And when they did act in 2001, they should have done something meaningful.

  114. njpatient says:

    Wow. An old one-bedroom in Bucks on an acre goes for $500,000?!?!?
    Sure glad I’ll be buying on the Main Line, where for that money you can get an old four-bedroom on an acre.

    Something in the water in bucks that makes people rich? Or stupid? Is it the proximity to Manhattan?

    Or maybe it’s simply that you are completely full of $hit.

  115. House Hunter says:

    Anyone have perspective on these REO – Asset mgtm companies? Rude would be a start…

  116. njpatient says:

    Oh – and if you’re surprised that a realtor-cum-flipper complaining about a buyer’s market and the sudden lack of leverage would get royally flamed on this board, then you haven’t been paying attention.

    I do acknowledge the value of a scenic view of 78, however. Those houses are like gold!

  117. Fiddy Cents on the Dollar says:

    ruggles, please….keep us posted on your efforts. Those kind of century homes, when updated correctly, are magnificent. Especially on large parcels of land.

    You have all your other material suppliers in alignment, I think you really need to find a better lender. There are some out there that know the difference between an older colonial and a new Center Hall with Dryvit Stucco siding and Home Depot Kitchen.

  118. njpatient says:

    Sorry ruggles.
    Bad mood.
    Haven’t slept since April.

  119. willwork4beer says:

    113 House

    Ouch. That’s gonna leave a mark…

  120. Tom says:

    grim, where did you get that FHA document from?

    According to that, they expect prices to fall through 2010-2011.

  121. willwork4beer says:

    103 ruggles

    You gave enough info in your posts for me to be able to find your house. I would say you got a pretty good deal but not that unusual for that town. A 4/1.5 that is right around the corner went for 10K more a few weeks ago. It is not an “antique home” but it has a garage. PS. Your 2 acres is really only 1.47 acres.

  122. Tom says:

    “My partner and I are probably considered almost perfect buyers. Our combined fico scores are 790″

    That’s a fico score of 395 each. You should be happy you found someone to qualify you at all.

  123. jamil says:

    I got back from London. did a little house-hunting in downtown area (in and around Kensington and quick look at Primrose Hill) and in the suburbs (30 minute train ride from London). It was difficult to get a good picture on the housing market without local knowledge, e.g. reliability of bus routes and taxes etc and also, apparently, you can buy a house, but lease the land.

    I have no idea how that affects the house price or what happens to the house when the lease expires. Rents in Kensington area are comparable to good areas in Manhattan (1BR for £2,000+/month). House prices were all over the place so I really cannot comment on that.

    Anyway, I realized that I really like the London/UK lifestyle, which is not so car-centric. Houses in tree-lined streets in Kensington had little gardens, no public housing projects nearby, you can really ride a bike there (in the suburbs this is even better).

    I like to take a walk (or bike) from my home and outside of Manhattan it does not seem to realistic (no pavements or bike lanes and socially awkward).

    I had one meeting in the suburbs and the firm there had on-site “bike doctor”, ready to fix your bike. Many employees lived nearby and walked or rode a bike to work. Local town had also arranged free shuttle (environmental reasons) from the train station and city center to various offices. Offices were near residential areas so it was possible to go to work without a car.

    So, overall very positive experience from lifestyle point of view. Also, reasonable-priced rentals in safe and ok areas seem to be available a bit farther away from nice downtown areas and at least some ok houses in the suburb were within my price range.

    I’m now preparing myself mentally that in a few years I will probably move to London (I can take internal transfer to various cities around the globe, including London).

    This is more like a lifestyle decision, rather than money decision. Anyway, who knows what will happen in the future.
    Maybe I end up buying a overpriced pos in NJ, driving a SUV 50 miles to work everyday.

  124. ruggles says:

    willwork4beer (103) yes, I figured anyone with the mls who cared would find it and yes I put 2 acres to help screen the property (was trying to be specific but not too specific). the comp around the corner sold only 10k more but it does have a little less land (1 acre) and a driveway easement through the yard, plus its from 1972, which has no appeal to me whatsoever (just as my house has no appeal to someone looking for newer), and no view to speak of except woods and other houses. and I do have a garage and a finished room in the barn.

    anyway, the first bank wouldnt put any value on my house and the second bank valued it at 10% less than the sales price. that was the point. I’m not saying my house is worth millions of dollars but its definitely worth at least what I paid, the original appraisal came in higher than the sales price (as they usually do).

    and look further into the solds in this town. 2 restored antique homes on 2.5 and 4.5 acres sold for $510k and $580k. the 580k house is also around the corner and it only has 2 bedrooms. i’m not saying my house is comparable now but its got to show there is some value here and that expansion or improvements have a good chance of holding their value. Plus there are 2 similar active antique listings in this town that are asking between $430k and $450k. on the same amount of land. and one of those recent $500+k sales is for sale again for $600k. then look at the township 1 mile to the east of me. its full of million dollar estates and it shares my zip code!

    Anyway, thats what I used to think. I now believe that Pat is correct and banks know what homes are worth better than real estate agents and appraisers. thats why most banks are not in trouble these days. I have overpaid and will have to suffer through it until the market recovers in 10 years or so. I am also not a knowledgeable agent and flipper so good thing no one will lend me money anymore.

    now that you know where I am, please find me another antique home like mine for what I paid. Or better yet, find me one for what my bank thinks my house is worth. I will buy it and attempt to flip it today. or I’ll move there and flip this one.


    I no longer practice in PA so I’m not going to list comps or discuss the market any further but all you have to do is go to http://www.lisajamesotto.com or http://www.adisonwolfe.com for examples of small antique homes with high price tags around new hope, solebury, tinicum, upper and lower makefield, yardley. I also will not comment on the state of mind of people in Bucks County. Spend some time there and you’ll find out. You can contact an agent there to see what the sold prices are like. and I live 7 minutes from rt 78 I have no view of it nor can I hear it. all i can hear is the waterfall next to my dining room window.

    This is fun!. well, back to the coneflowers (not petunias!)

  125. frank says:

    “skep-tic Says:
    June 21st, 2008 at 11:45 am
    Frank, seriously, what planet are you living on.”

    I am living on the same planet as you, but I take a realistic view of the RE market. Yes, sales are dropping, so do prices, but very little in NJ. If you want to see a disaster, look at CA, FL, NV, AZ and GA RE markets, those are comp killers. NJ market is doing just fine but people on this blog want you to believe that you can buy a house for 50% off 2005 prices. Keep on wishing.

  126. frank says:

    # 3b Says:

    #80 Frank: I do not understand your thought process.

    Comp killers to me are at least 30% off, when you see a sale that’s 20K off asking price, that’s normal market, some homes will sell below asking, some will sell above asking.
    In CA, FL, NV, AZ and GA we are selling homes at 50-90% off 2007 prices, those are comp killers, NJ market is as hot as it gets these days.

  127. Pat says:

    jamil, I’m liking that bike doctor thing.

    What else can you tell us about that?

  128. frank says:

    “Please pardon Frank. He’s been drinking all night.”

    I have been up all night baby sitting and drinking formula.

  129. RentinginNJ says:

    Any recommendations on where to go to pre qualified for a mortgage? Is there anywhere I should stay away from?

  130. Tom says:

    oh. 20% down is a hot market. It all makes sense now.

  131. John says:

    Interesting Soveign bank stock up on friday in worst market for banks and then today the largest holder of their stock Banco Santandar reports amazing profits, someone knew something on Friday!!!!! A regional bank up on friday!!

    June 21 (Bloomberg) — Banco Santander SA, Spain’s biggest bank, forecast profit will surpass 10 billion euros ($15.6 billion) in 2008, a record, as growth in Brazil and elsewhere in Latin America offsets an economic slowdown in its home market.

    “Banco Santander has shown its considerable strength in the face of the abrupt change in financial markets,” Chairman Emilio Botin, 73, told shareholders today at the bank’s annual meeting in Santander, Spain. Santander earned 9.06 billion euros in 2007, or 8.11 billion euros before extraordinary items.

    Santander, which makes about 80 percent of its profit from retail banking, has sidestepped much of the collapse in the U.S. subprime mortgage market that so far has caused almost $400 billion in losses. Santander is doubling its presence in Brazil with the acquisition of ABN Amro Holding NV’s bank and Botin said today he expects Latin American profit to increase 20 percent this year in dollar terms.

  132. John says:

    those program to re-attract women to the work force started back in 2004/2006 when workers were a hot commodity. Now you don’t even want the workers you have so I think the economy doomed those programs.

  133. willwork4beer says:

    126 ruggles

    Maybe the bank was balking at 65K over the 2004 sale price. (250K in 2/2004.) While you see an antique home that could be restored and flipped for more money, the bank sees a 120 old house that might not be worth the price. Califon aint New Hope, no matter how much you might want it to be. It isn’t Tewksbury, either.

    All that being said, I will repeat that I think you got a pretty good deal. I just understand that banks are going to be cautious given the current economic realities.

  134. willwork4beer says:

    128 Frank

    I agree that NJ has a long way to go. But I have to disagree with your definition of a comp killer. 30% off asking price just means the seller was delusional. What’s important is sales price. The example I posted showed a 20K cut from the sales price in 2005. That, plus the 6% agent commission, means the seller lost about 50K in three years. I realize that prices are still off the hook. Just trying to point out that they are moving in the right direction.

  135. willwork4beer says:

    BTW, the OLP on that house was 710K so it sold for 55K under OLP.

  136. Tom says:

    Frank any of these qualify as comp killers?

    Townhouse that sold for 13% off 2006 price in Fair Lawn

    House in Teaneck that went for 37% off 2005 price

    Another house in Teaneck, 38% off the 2006 price

    Since you think 20% down is a hot market you’re going to love the next couple of years.

  137. Pat says:

    So, Ruggles puts $40k into the place a and gets a new kitchen, takes a bedroom and expands the bathroom.

    Pays three years of property taxes.

    What is he going to get for the place in 2010?

  138. Pat says:

    Or, how much rent could he get on it?

  139. willwork4beer says:

    140 Pat

    Good question. Maybe the bank was wondering that, too.

  140. willwork4beer says:

    Oh well, good people. Its off to the ballpark with Mrs. Beer. I love the minors. A hotdog and one of those fizzy drinks. What do they call it again? Oh yeah… BEER!!! ;)

  141. Tom says:

    Paid 65k above 2004 price?

    Place sounds nice though. I can’t seem to find the place. Don’t have mls access. Someone post the address so I can both envy him and mock him at the same time :)

  142. rhymingrealtor says:


    Not sure why 3 years of taxes really matter if he is living there. At the very least he would be paying that in rent to live somewhere? where would he be in 2010 with his rental?
    I am a happy renter as you may know. It costs to live anywhere.
    I also understand there are actually homes out there worth buying. The bank could not appraise this property because of it’s unusualness ( if that’s a word) and they as I said are overshooting the correction, as can be expected. I think ruggles illustrated what the mortgage market is like out there.


  143. Pat says:

    ww4b, I think I found a similar situation.

    These people took a bedroom, made a bath, paid $272 in 1997. But they had to do remediation, as well, so they’re more in it.

    Asking $400k. Good schools. I think they’ll prolly get $350, if it sells.


  144. Pat says:

    kl, there’s more going on here than financing issues.

    Value is being worked out.

    I’m not even sure right now how valuable it is to make mortgage on the rent payments. Valuation is hard.

  145. R Patrick says:

    143 Mr Beer, great handle, my GF has her “will work for books” T on today.

    Friend looking upstate NY, many listings saying “Buyer will sign affidavit saying primary residence” or similar.

  146. Pat says:

    It’s difficult to extrapolate from individual situations out to the market.

    But from what I’m seeing, and I’m looking in separate marketplaces right now, the problem is everyplace.

    Yes, I was looking in NJ. And in PA.

    Now, I’m looking in another state, and the same facts are holding.

  147. Pat says:

    Oops, heres the mls for post 146 link.

  148. bi says:

    But Obama’s announcement Thursday that he would become the first candidate to opt out of the public financing program for the general election was a big deal for some of the nation’s most influential newspaper editorial boards, which have long been ardent champions of campaign finance reform and which had thought they’d found a kindred spirit on the issue.

    The Philadelphia Inquirer’s editorial board called the decision “as disappointing as it is disingenuous,” while The Boston Globe’s board wrote that it “deals a body blow … to his own reputation as a reform candidate.” And The Baltimore Sun’s editorial board called it “a major disappointment for those struggling to restrain the pernicious influence of special interests in American politics.”

    The New York Times’ editorial board, which endorsed Clinton after allegedly leaning toward Obama, wrote that “Obama has come up short” of “his evocative vows to depart from self-interested politics.”


  149. kettle1 says:


    but regarding some of the energy debates, some people might find this interesting

    a paper by a cambridge (UK) physicist
    Sustainable Energy – Without the Hot Air


  150. ruggles says:

    to willwork4beer 136 — the 2004 sale price of the house doesnt seem like a recent comp to me. It was a private sale–and not in the mls–the seller bought it from his aunt who’s family owned the whole valley for years–she was the last holdout after the rest of the land was sold off. It would’ve never gone on the market if he didnt get married and have three kids in 3 years.

    The house is not in Califon as you know. But you must also realize that about 1/3 of Tewksbury also has a Califon zip code and we all go to the same high school. also I realize that neither Califon nor Clinton are as busy and overhyped as New Hope and I didnt originally bring up the Bucks County comparision but prices here absolutely rival those in the most popular parts of Bucks because this is estate and horse country and its reasonable to NYC.

    I also never originally said i want to flip the house, i may live here for 20 years. I just said that, to me, I can’t find anything like it and I think its worth at least what I paid for it AND I could see putting in a little work and listing it higher than I paid but less than other neighboring houses that are priced much higher. Absolutely the two closest houses to mine in style, acreage, condition, etc. and in my same town are currently listed in the $440,000 range. thats quite a difference from what i paid. AND they’re on busier and faster roads and farther from the highway and the fabled Tewksbury.

    Yes I am surprised that banks can’t see the same value and even you found a close house that sold for a little more, with little effort.

    I CHALLENGE YOU to find more houses like mine for sale now. I think we’d all be very curious to see what the asking prices are for similar homes. Otherwise, I’m done with this discussion. If you can’t find me similar active comps for the same price or less, my point is made.

    If you are truly interested, since you know who I am, hit me up offline and I can send you the exterior shots of the land (am assuming you don’t live in the area). have a good night

  151. 3b says:

    #129 Frank:NJ market is as hot as it gets these days.

    Again, I do not understand the thought process, a hot amrkjet to me, means hosues flyong off the shelf, bidding wars, huge demand little to no supply.

    Well the Nj real estate market has none of that.

    I am not interested about the few houses that do sell, I am more interested with the hundreds of listings that are not selling. That defines the true state of the market.

    The listings showing 20k off etc. while not showing a crash, csrtainly show that real estate prices do go down. If a home owner who bought in 03, 04, and 05, sees prices in their neighborhood selling for less than what they paid, or the same, guess hwat they are going to be happy. No matter what they say to the contrary.

    NAd id nothing else those comp killers show that many who bought in 2004/05, have not made one dime on their investment, so the old real estate always goes up myth is put to rest again.

    AS far as bing as bad as AZ, Cal FL, NV, no we are not there, at least not yet, can we, get there absolutely.

    And no 50% off 2005 prices may not be as insane as you think it is, I believe we will definitely see 30% off, and in leeser areas in NJ, including north Jersey towns who fortunes rose merely be being next to more expensive or better areas could and will probably see in many instances prices at 50% off 2005 levels.

    Again Frank call the NJ market what you want except hot, because hot it is not.

  152. kettle1 says:


    was it you asking about the Gmen the other day?

    Senate Housing Bill Requires eBay, Amazon, Google, and All Credit Card Companies to Report Transactions to the Government

    dont worry, they dont need to spy. all of the companies are sending their records to various 3 leter organizations anyway

  153. Laughing all the way says:

    pat, if you wouldn’t mind, perhaps you can take a look at 96.

    it’s bucks cty related

  154. Tom says:

    “I CHALLENGE YOU to find more houses like mine for sale now. I think we’d all be very curious to see what the asking prices are for similar homes. Otherwise, I’m done with this discussion. If you can’t find me similar active comps for the same price or less, my point is made.”

    I’ll give it a shot. Hopefully there’s a prize ;)

    How bout this one in washington twp? Nice old colonial with 80’s looking baths and more recent kitchen. It’s a little more expensive but it’s also more than 5 times the land and 3 full baths. It says it’s farm assessed so you might be able to get the gov’t to pay you a subsidy to not farm it.


  155. Tom says:

    Would anyone mind getting the address for that property in 157, would be interested in seeing more info.

  156. dblko says:

    Seller didn’t accept our offer and our house hunting efforts are on hold for now. My wife got herself on of these overpriced designer handbags to emotionally make up for it. Having avoided the risk of overpaying for that house feels like I came out alright.

  157. Pat says:

    Hey, Laughing.

    I don’t peruse the over $500k stuff. There’s so much of it, and the price varies so much by development.

    That kitchen doesn’t look like half a million to me. I think they’re hoping the porch thing buys $50k, too. Not for Bucks.

    I see the comps on zillow from January in the other development in Newtown. Did you click on view all comps and then sort by the column header for date? There really is not much selling, so you might have to pick a few similar houses from Yardley, Lower Makefield or something over by Villa Joe. Pan around on the zillow map.

  158. rhymingrealtor says:


    82 Mccullogh Rd Washington TWP NJ


    Not me, but interesting and disturbing.


  159. Tom says:

    I found the map of that property, it’s on McColough

    I can see why it’s so cheap, the land needs work, they’re building all these new big houses in the area. You probably have to deal with your neighbor’s horses drinking out of your stream, he’ll probably even be a pest about making you go riding. Might be worth selling off the part of the land with the house and use the rest to built a new house away from that annoying prick.

  160. Pat says:

    dblko, I found myself turning to coconut popsicles. And Pepperidge Farm vanilla layer cake, vanilla icing, frozen. Sounds gross.

    Then, a few years ago, I started taking out my frustration on ebay.

    I’d see a house, or we’d bid and lose. Then right over to ebay and snipe a pair of earrings or a necklace for three bucks.

    You should see all the little boxes. I’m never at a loss for a quick gift.

  161. Tom says:

    Thanks rhyming. Looks like it already has been subdivided.

    That might not be a bad deal.

  162. njpatient says:

    143 willslack4beer

    I love the minors too. Used to go to the cradle of baseball at Wahconah Park in Pittsfield MA every day. Now the minors tend to be newfangled, though still a great time. Where did you go today?

  163. Pat says:

    The fireworks are going off right now over at the Trenton Thunder.

    We would’ve gone if the Boss didn’t get so exhausted at the pool today. She made me go on the slide again. And again. And again.

    My 45-year-old butt has slide burns.

  164. Laughing all the way says:

    hey pat, thanks for that zillow tip. never noticed that link. i dont think it’s updated that regularly … most recent comps were in Jan of this year.

    re: price … we’d never pay that (when we’re buying, in spring 09 when our lease is up). were looking in the 500-699 range now because we think those will fall to about 500-550 when we’re ready to buy.

    some folks have scoffed at us for assuming a 675k house could fall 100k in 6 months … we’ll see.

  165. rhymingrealtor says:


    First time I ever went to a water park with my kids was about 5 years ago. We got home at around 6pm, I was sound asleep by 6:15 …. I was only about 43 at that time!


  166. Pat says:

    It’s normally not so bad for me, having a young kid. She’s fast, but I’m hyper.

    Today, however, I did my annual personal car washing. Two hours of washing, hoovering, and getting the gum out of the mats and the melted crayon off the crush valor. ;)

  167. Everything's Hobroken says:

    re 151
    Obama and public finance

    It is amusing to me that criticism of the decision to abandon the government’s public financing system by the Obama campaign has come from both the left and the right.

    While the right has distrusted the system because it limits spending and the left because it does not prevent private donations.

    What both fail to see is that he has stumbled on the answer to financing that neither really opposes. This new system removes the suspect power of large donors while removing the limits of spending.

    Instead of lauding this new funding paradigm, they attack it against the long term best interest of the country.

    I argue that his abandonment of the government system is correct and the criticism is inside-the-beltway nonsense. The public has rightly never really supported the system. It used to be that the Republicans got the majority of their contributions from small donors and the Democrats from a few large donors (contrary to what you would expect). Few volunteered to donate to the federal system using the check-off because their donation might well go to someone they did not support.

    From now on, both will do what Obama is doing. The 537s will fade away since the amounts available to the candidates will allow the campaigns to swamp their media access.

    Woe to the party that tries to run an unpopular candidate in the future. Many will find this scary, but opening up the process in this new way is the best chance we’ve got.

  168. Everything's Hobroken says:

    SP 537 is really 527

  169. Pat says:

    Laughing, have you ever gone up this road:

  170. Richard says:

    haven’t been here in a while but nothing much has changed the usual whiners complaining about how houses are too expensive and they just have to come down to a price i want to pay for it. ho hum. 3 sales on my block in the last 6 months all solid at or up to 3% below asking in less than 3 weeks. my town pool just got a major overhaul and its even better than it was before if that was even possible. downtown retail is flourishing from what a local councilman told me. good towns will weather this storm far better than others.

  171. njpatient says:


    I was at a party in the city last month and the topic of Westfield came up. Folks were horrified that the place doesn’t have a direct train line and was more expensive than Summit.
    Westfield’s a dying town.

  172. njpatient says:

    And the town pool renovation is a disaster, unless the goal was to make it impossible for a parent with multiple children to use the thing, in which case it was a great success.

  173. BC Bob says:

    “haven’t been here in a while but nothing much has changed the usual whiners complaining”


    Quite the contrary, I’m having a blast. Haven’t even heard too much Goldilocks lately. Also, I went against you and took the other side of the trade regarding the resiliency of the US consumer. Just a great trade. I owe you a drink. REM sang about the clueless on Thurs, Everybody Hurts.

    How’s your theory regarding unlimited/perpetual liquidity? Trillions in liquidity sucked down the drain. Still buying those financials after a 10% pullback? It always worked in the past. Why not now? Have you retrieved your nose out of the butts of the 5 WS’s that bought in that overpriced/overbought town. Come to think of it, do they still have jobs?

    Thrilled to have you back. Please come to the next GTG. Love to hear your next buy, I have a new pair of shorts, have to break in.

  174. BC Bob says:

    “downtown retail is flourishing from what a local councilman told me.”


    A monte carlo simulation?

    Not earth shattering news, Fuld recently said we were in the 9th inning. That was before he begged for $6B. Oh by the way, that $6B has gone up in smoke.

    Did your local carnival barker discuss recent tepee sales at the street fair?

  175. still_looking says:


    It was me asking about Gmen.

    Aren’t there repercussions if these folks use tapping/taping for personal use? Don’t they require warrants???



  176. 3b says:

    #167 laughing:some folks have scoffed at us for assuming a 675k house could fall 100k in 6 months … we’ll see.

    They alreasy have and are continuing to fall in many areas at 100k in 6 months and more.

  177. 3b says:

    #173 Richard: It appears your whole block has turned over in the last 18 months.

    Yes nothing much has changed, even with all that has tranpired since you last stopped visiting us, you are still in complete denial. Very sad.

  178. Credit repair has become very important. Many people dont even know what their credit score is. There is so much identity theft that a person should get their credit report at least every year. Look over it VERY carefully and make sure everything is correct. IF you find things wrong with it then contact the credit reporting agency. Dispute the item. If you do not know how to dispute an item you can get a book called The Ultimate Credit Repair Book and it will show you how you can remove items easily.

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