South Jersey Slump

From the Press of Atlantic City:

Southern New Jersey builders say this has been a depression for them

Despite a housing slump that devastated the home-building industry, new homes continue to be built in southern New Jersey, mostly in projects started before the end of the real estate boom.

“The perception that there are no new homes out there is not true,” said Doug Fenichel, spokesman for K. Hovnanian Homes. “We have homes available, a good selection.”

Home builders say that while the rest of the nation has been in a severe recession, they have been in a depression.

The figures show they’re not exaggerating.

From 1.8 million housing starts in 2006, the industry was cut to less than a third of its former self with a low of 553,000 starts last year, the National Association of Home Builders says. Sales of new single-family homes plunged 65 percent, from 1 million to 372,000.

The home-building slump has nearly halted the large new developments that were common in the growth townships of southern New Jersey during the mid-decade housing boom.

“When the economy and market turned south, home builders stopped building. They certainly stopped building new communities, especially with the heavy regulations in New Jersey,” he said.

The falloff can be seen in K. Hovnanian’s numbers.

In the fiscal quarter ended January 2006, the company signed 608 contracts for homes in the tristate area of New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania, Fenichel said. In the same quarter in 2009, its home contracts had plunged to 130.

The industry is aware that it’s going to be a long wait, until next year at least.

“We’re all just treading water and hanging in there,” she said.

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205 Responses to South Jersey Slump

  1. grim says:

    From Gawker:

    What Insanely Rich Person Will Move Into This $16 Million New Jersey Mansion?

    New York, you are about to get a very rich neighbor. Here is a $16.5 million mega-mansion in Montclair, NJ with sweeping views of the Manhattan skyline, a tunnel, theater, pool, hot tub, and its very own website.

  2. grim says:

    From the Record:

    Vacation home buyers slowly returning to Jersey Shore

    Rich and Jane Lally of Mount Olive love the Jersey Shore, where they have rented a place every year since 1994.

    They’re heading back this summer — but this time as owners, not renters, after buying a home in Lavallette a few weeks ago.

    “My wife and I just saved our pennies, hoping one day we could afford it,” Lally said. “Prices have come down, and interest rates are so low. We felt that if we didn’t do it now, we’d never be able to do it down the road.”

    The Lallys are among the buyers venturing back to the vacation home market, which was slammed by the recession and the housing bust. At the Jersey Shore, real estate agents report that while activity is nowhere near the levels of the peak years of the housing boom, it has begun moving up from the lows of 2008 and 2009.

    “Certainly business has been off,” said Lee Childers of Childers Sotheby’s International Realty, which has five offices from Point Pleasant Beach to Seaside Park. “But I’m happy to report there is a market, which means there are willing sellers and willing buyers — at new, reduced prices.”

    In interviews, real estate agents gave a range of 10 percent to 20 percent when asked how much prices have declined from the market peak around 2006. Data from the Monmouth County Board of Realtors backed them up, showing that the median price of a single-family home had dropped 14 percent in Monmouth County and 16 percent in Ocean from 2006 to the first four months of 2010 — still less than the overall drop of around 20 percent in the region.

    An analysis of nine shore towns by the Otteau Valuation Group in East Brunswick found that the number of sales was down, often dramatically, in most areas. But the price picture was spotty, with some towns — especially in the northern shore counties — actually clocking price increases.

  3. grim says:

    From MarketWatch:

    More homeowners choose to default on loans

    “Strategic defaults” are on the rise as more borrowers who are underwater on their home loans decide it’s not worth it to stay current on their payments each month. That trend could have repercussions for the housing market, and for borrowers, in the future.

    The Morgan Stanley report estimates that 12% of mortgage defaults in February were strategic. Other reports estimate an even higher proportion of this type of loan default.

    “In our data, what we’ve noticed is at about 25% negative equity, the behavior of owners begins to mimic that of investors — they’re more ruthless and rational, they’re looking at it from a cash-flow perspective,” Khater said. “The default rate rises as the negative equity gets deeper and deeper.”

  4. jp says:

    Help. I am getting more and more confused with all of the conflicting news. Are we on an upward or downward trajectory in the housing market? Nobody wants to definitively say it. Are we all just going to wait for the next Case-Schiller index numbers to show up?

    I actually want to see more strategic defaulters. Imagine the short term horizon if all the underwater people are gambling in the stock market.

  5. Nomad says:

    #1 – nice crib Grim. Speculation is where LeBron is going hang out for awhile when he goes to the Knicks. Think he will ride the Midtown Direct to Penn / MSG?

  6. freedy says:

    wait a minute grim: people i’m running into
    are telling me : but housing is picking up,
    we’re getting back on track.

    Mostly Bergen C people. all over the news

  7. MSP says:

    re-post from last thread….

    Anybody have an opinion on qualifying for the move up buyer tax credit ($6,500). If you have a signed contract before April 30th, but you’re not out of attorney review until May 5th, do you qualify for the tax credit assuming you close by June 30th? The thing that keeps throwing me off is the “binding contract” language in the law. Its not technically binding until you’re out of attorney review, right? However, there are all kinds of contingencies in RE contracts (home sale, mortgage, inspections, etc) that the contract isn’t really truly binding until after all the contingencies are satisfied. I’m torn and would appreciate those in the know on the board weighing in.

  8. Final Doom says:

    I think the first time around on the tax credit, something like 1 bn in fraudulent and erroneous credits were taken.

    Believe it or not, TPTB are making all this stuff up so fast that rules, guidelines and other small print-type stuff are never fleshed out (you should see the print version of some of the UST “help for homedebtors” stuff).

    Consult the IRS on the tax credit. They may be able to help you.

  9. Final Doom says:

    Mr. Wantanopoulous-

    Stronghold SC 2, Thistle 1.

    Does this entitle me to a shot of Kentucky Gentleman and a warm Schlitz chaser in one of Harrison’s finest establishments?

  10. Shore Guy says:

    There is no slump in South Jersey, just a golden buying opportunity. Those who are not complete losers will recognize this and jump in or be priced out forever once prices jump back where they ought, by all laws of nature, to be.

    5X earnings, 6X earnings, it does not matter. Proximity to either the ocean, the bay, the Delaware river, Atlantic City, Philly, the Turnpike or Parkway make every house worth twice whatever anyone is seeking.

  11. mack daddy gary says:

    1 out of 5 are under-employed or out of work and you now have to give blood to qualify for a loan; please tell me what why the word “recovery” is being tossed around?

  12. NJGator says:

    Re #1 – Don’t I get any love for posting that place weeks ago?

    No way, no how are they getting $16M for it. Someone with that kind of money will just go to Alpine or Short Hills. Strahan’s ex couldn’t even get half that for her place. I think she was forced to hold a yard sale and sell off Mike’s old possessions.

  13. mack daddy gary says:

    Nearly one in five full-time Bergen and Passaic county employees makes more than $100,000 a year, as the cost of county government rises despite a lean economy and efforts to rein in municipal, school district and state spending.

    This f*cking party is over. I explained this over and over again. Say goodbye to your perks, benefits and cushy position. You’ll now join the private sector which consists of temp or contract work. You don’t work, you don’t get paid. You must create your own investment and insurance plans. If this is too much for you to handle, simply take a swig of Dewars and drive a railroad spike through your cranium.

  14. njescapee says:

    Clarence “the Big Man” Clemons was back on stage at the Schooner Wharf.

  15. Shore Guy says:

    NJ Escapee,

    I found this on the page that opens from your link (It sounds familiar):

    Administrators add up as students subtracted
    Key West Citizen – Monday, May 17, 2010

    In 2005, the year hurricanes chased families from the Florida Keys, the student population began to plummet, but the number of Monroe County school administrators rose by 24 percent, a review of…

  16. Libtard says:

    Empire State Mfg Survey:

    Prior Consensus Consensus Range Actual
    31.86 30.0 24.0 to 32.0 19.1

  17. Long-Legged Mr hyde says:

    Mack daddy gary

    Lets introduce the BC government employees to the private sector. Fire every single one of them and then hire them all back as private contractors at market rates (i.e about 50-60% of what they are currently making and no benefits)

    Secondly, disband all town police forces and contract for police service with the state police while maintaining county sheriffs offices. Of course The state police will have to be expanded somewhat but any of the fired town officers are welcome to apply to the state police.

  18. Long-Legged Mr Hyde says:


    You saw the previous LA riots right??? ready for round 2? The governator is proposing to drastically cut social programs and slash the public dole. That should prime LA for some sweet riots! Do we end up with race wars this time in LA or just the standard riots?

  19. Shore Guy says:


    Something interesting that many State and municipal employees and retirees have not yet come torealize is that negotiated retirement benefits can be negotiated away by a new contract. If the current crop of employees found it in their best interest to throw current retirees under the bus, they could do so, and it is only the currently-employed members who get a voice in the ratification vote.

    Likewise, public-employee negotiations is a creature of legislation, and the legislature may alter the parameters whenever it so chooses. With two votes and the stroke of a pen, the PERC Act can be modified to require just about any contribution level the legislature wants to impose when it comes to retirement or insurance benefits.

  20. mack daddy gary says:


    The gig is up… after they get over the initial shock and denial, they will accept the 60% pay cut at their new position in car sales and come to terms with it all.

    I’m leaving now for work… my full time contract position with a “right to hire” clause (LMAO!!).

  21. Cindy says:

    Well this cracks me up. He is citing the same two articles I compared yesterday @ 64 and 65.

    Two ways of viewing the same problem.

  22. mack daddy gary says:

    Mr. Hyde [17],

    I agree, run for office and I’ll vote for you.

  23. Cindy says:

    18 – Kettle

    No riots yet. Arnold is using severe cuts to social programs as a bargaining chip. The Reps and Dems will argue over what is best for months to come. We haven’t had a budget come in on the June 15th deadline in years.

  24. Libtard says:

    I would like to be a able to cast a vote for Borat Obama.

  25. Final Doom says:

    Exit light; enter night:

    “The Asset Securitization Crisis of the US and much of the developed and emerging markets (2007-2009) apparently ended for many relatively quickly, despite being the worst economic downturn the country (and most likely the world) has seen since the Great Depression. How did the US pull out so fast, or more importantly, did the US actually pull out of it at all? Well, it was never my belief that the problem was over, simply papered over with some accounting changes and force fed massive amounts of liquidity coupled with a drive to privatize profits while socializing losses. Of course, the natural result of such actions was the gorging of the public sector on debt and bad assets. This sleight of hand was able to create a positive GDP print in many countries while rescuing sub par private companies that would have toppled under less generate corporate welfare, but more importantly, it succeeded in poisoning several governments whose finances could not handle the extra burden of unrestrained spending during economic boom times combined with the assumption of massive private sector losses during the “bust” times.

    Thus the Asset Securitization Crisis has been morphed, through direct and explicit government and central banker intervention, into a Pan-European Sovereign Debt Crisis, Soon to be the Global Sovereign Debt Crisis. This particular environment have been custom-made for my proprietary investment style, see “The Great Global Macro Experiment, Revisited“.”

  26. Long-Legged Mr Hyde says:

    Sorry gary,

    Last time i looked, i had a reflection in the mirror and weighed in under 300 lbs.

    Any idea where i could get a good deal for my soul? Perhaps then we can revisit my political ambitions.

  27. Final Doom says:

    hyde (18)-

    Race wars, class wars and rioting just for the hell of it.

    CA is a friggin’ cesspool. After living through the riots and seeing what I saw then, I’d never live anywhere near that cesspool.

    The only plus is that I can’t imagine the LA police are as bad now as they were then. They were closer to Waffen SS than an actual police force.

  28. Final Doom says:

    My apologies for the overuse of the word, “cesspool”.

    So very, very appropriate, though.

  29. Knife Catcher - Painhrtz says:

    Clot and I thought I hated LA

  30. Essex says:

    20. Then the dealership that employs those sales folks will wonder why they aren’t selling cars. They close. The dealership that builds a good and well-compensated sales team grows and prospers and free enterprise rolls on.

  31. Final Doom says:

    sx (30)-

    Free enterprise only works in a free economic environment. Increasingly, free enterprise is being squeezed out and replaced by corporate fascism, collectivism and other dirty little games that move the goalposts.

  32. Pat says:

    Has anyone else bailed from FB during the last week of privacy hysteria?

    What’s going to happen to me as I float along, identity-less?

  33. Final Doom says:

    One cannot build any kind of sales business in an environment in which the primary product is not in demand and the financing for such purchases is either predatory or non-existent.

  34. Final Doom says:

    Pat (33)-

    I bailed from FB because it is retarded and pointless.

  35. NJGator says:

    So one of our few Central Office layoff casualties has just been granted a lifeline – and a 19K raise. Not bad during the worst budget year ever in the district. Only in Montclair, folks.

  36. Pat says:

    Commodity. Available knowledge makes the sales force a commodity, with production requirements integrating formerly end-of-process service requirements.

  37. Pat says:

    I didn’t post on FB, and rarely used it, unless my husband pointed out that a really good family pic was there.

    However, I will now be excluded from the updates of local active groups, including meeting dates, decisions and to-do lists.

    Hmmmm….maybe that’s not such a bad thing.

  38. Pat says:

    I want my daughter’s name to be protected. I don’t want her tagged in photos.

    I do not want friends-of-friends identifying her.

    Is this child protection right available?

    If not, then FB needs to be regulated.

  39. Long-Legged Mr Hyde says:

    Gator 36


    so whitlock went to law school, practiced law, then became a teacher/administartor, then quite to act, then went for a masters in education and is now going to be principle….

    After a brief sojourn to pursue an acting career, Whitlock returned to the school district in 2001. Six years later, he went to graduate school to get a master’s degree with the intention of becoming Mt. Hebron’s principal. He felt a calling to become an education leader, he told The Times.

    “I’m coming home,” he said. “It is absolutely my dream job.”

    Whitlock, a graduate of NYU Law School who practiced law for a decade until he became a teacher, is a Verona resident, but grew up in Montclair. He is a 1973 graduate of Montclair High School, while his mother graduated from that school in 1942.

  40. Long-Legged Mr Hyde says:


    if someone takes a photo of your daughter in public they can identify her as they see fit.

    You could always keep her from being seen in public.

  41. Pat says:

    Hyde, I think they accidentally mixed up the bios and combined two articles to save space.

    The only one who does crap like that in real life is Barbie. The doll.

  42. Long-Legged Mr Hyde says:


    If Montklair is so forward looking and socially progressive why weren’t minority woman appointed to the positions instead of the same old boys club, men.

  43. Pat says:

    Hyde, do you know the reverse opt-out provisions?

    With any identity not linked to a verified profile identified as an adult/over 18, no tagging should be legal.

  44. Cindy says:

    Pat – I noticed this on Baseline Scenario about a week ago. Click on each year to see the expansion.

    Simon Johnson had recently exited Facebook and did a write up on the privacy issue. I have never been on Facebook but did forward this graphic to my daughters.

  45. Long-Legged Mr Hyde says:


    I dont partake of the various pop social networking sites….

  46. NJGator says:

    For those of you who need some effective, non-prescription birth control.

  47. Pat says:

    Cindy, it wasn’t so much my own privacy concerns that were the tipping point.

    It was the fact that I had to cut&paste a link over from wikihow in order to delete my account.

    That was the straw.

  48. Final Doom says:

    gator (36)-

    I seriously question why your town isn’t devolving into armed revolt. Then again, history shows us mass brainwashing has always proved effective.

  49. Final Doom says:

    hyde (41)-

    Dilettante and professional parasite.

  50. Final Doom says:

    Back in the day, aka “job-hoppers”.

  51. Long-Legged Mr Hyde says:


    I like that kids lipstick war paint. very intimidating! And the kid with the train in the microwave might have a future as an insurgent specializing in improvised devices!!!

  52. Final Doom says:

    hyde (42)-

    Burkas for every girl!

  53. make money says:

    grim 1

    Fiting for King James.

  54. Long-Legged Mr Hyde says:


    Whitlock must either be caring something approaching mid 6 figure debt for the background he has or he has access to some serious wealth.

    He’s got to have a minimum of 8 years of advanced education. law school alone probably ran him 150K and the master another 40-60K. Add in 30- 50 K for undergrad and you are approaching 300K in school debt. I wonder how much he paid for acting school?

  55. Final Doom says:

    make, do you think Bron is really stupid enough to work for the Dolans?

  56. Final Doom says:

    hyde (57)-

    Employers only run credit checks on job applicants in the real world.

    In the Peoples’ Paradise of Montklair, debt is only a concept…never a reality.

    I’m beginning to think that the inability to function in a world of magical thinking is actually our problem, not the gubmint’s.

  57. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [49] gator

    Wow. I guess I should chill about my oldest daughter’s occasional lapses. She isn’t nearly as destructive.

    OTOH, 5:54 a.m. was me this morning. And I had dressed for a client meeting and presentation beforehand.

  58. Cindy says:

    Pat @ 50 –
    Here is the original post by Johnson.

    Have a great day all.

  59. make money says:

    make, do you think Bron is really stupid enough to work for the Dolans?

    In 15 years, he’ll buy the team from the Dolans. Nothing stupid about that.

  60. Comrade Nom Deplume says:


    Never knew Bill Issac to be this angry.

    “Americans should direct their anger at Congress, not Wall Street, for the nation’s economic woes, a former government official told CNBC Friday.

    “We should be angry at all the large firms, but we should be very upset with the people in government who really helped inflate this,” said Bill Isaac, the chairman of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC) from 1981 to 1985.

    Isaac attributes the anger to the Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP) legislation of 2008, which provided $700 billion to the large Wall Street firms.

    “I was adamantly opposed to TARP. It was not needed and it did more harm than good,” Isaac said.

    The rocky relationship will eventually get fixed, Isaac said. “This will get repaired. We’ll get past this,” said Isaac. “But the damage will last a long time.”

    The next blow to Wall Street could be the financial regulation legislation currently being addressed by the Senate.

    “This is a bad bill and it’s getting worse by the day,” Isaac said. “Hopefully, they’ll load it up with so much, it can’t pass, and we take it up again after the (mid-term) election,” he added.

  61. Juice Box says:

    Pat – Facebook is nothing compared to the problem of sexting.

    Studies say at least 20 percent of kids 13 to 19 had sent partially or completely nude pictures of themselves or someone they knew.

  62. Juice Box says:

    Cumon no way he is coming to the Nicks, Obama already said he thinks LeBron would look great as a Bull.

  63. Juice Box says:

    madness in Vegas.

    “Yet builders here are putting up 1,100 homes, and they are frantically buying lots for even more.”

  64. Jill says:

    What bothers me about you people who adopt the “You’ll join the private sector where you will be treated like cr@p like the rest of us and like it” attitude is that the benefits the public sector has USED TO BE HAD BY EVERYONE. Is this a “resistance is futile” thing?

  65. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Tax News of the Day:

    Its not enought for CBPP that the productive must pay the taxes for the indolent. They also want us to pay their electric bills too.

    “Senators Kerry and Lieberman performed CPR on climate policy yesterday, releasing a discussion draft of the bill they have been crafting with Senator Graham. Admittedly, Congress is still a long way from passing a comprehensive climate and energy bill. But in an area of particular concern to the Center — protecting vulnerable low-income households — the senators have done a good job.

    Like the climate bill the House passed last year, the Kerry-Lieberman proposal includes a robust program of direct payments (“energy refunds”) for low-income households. The refunds are large enough to protect the typical household in the poorest 20 percent of the population from incurring a financial loss as a result of the policies necessary to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions. (The bottom 20 percent consists of households with incomes below roughly 150 percent of the poverty line, or about $33,000 for a family of four.)

    The refund program is very similar to the one in the House bill (which we analyzed here). We’ll have a full analysis soon, but here are the highlights:

    Households with incomes at or below 150 percent of the poverty line will be eligible to receive monthly energy refunds by direct deposit or through states’ electronic benefit transfer (EBT) systems, the debit-card systems states use to deliver food stamps and other federal benefits.

    Households that receive food stamps, as well as low-income seniors and people with disabilities who participate in the Supplemental Security Income program, will be enrolled for the energy refunds automatically. Other households will have to apply for them.

    Households with slightly higher incomes — between 150 and 250 percent of the poverty line, or about $33,000 -$55,000 for a family of four — will be eligible for a smaller tax credit. The credit will be refundable, meaning that if the amount of a family’s credit exceeds its income tax liability, it can receive the difference in the form of a refund check.

    It’s encouraging that the new proposal, like the House-passed bill, follows the soundest approach to protecting low-and moderate-income consumers in a comprehensive energy and climate bill: providing direct assistance through state EBT systems and refundable tax credits. This approach is effective in reaching these households, efficient (with low administrative costs), and consistent with the goal of encouraging energy conservation.”


    Like I said before: Under this adminstration, poor is the new black.

    Or as PJ O’Rourke said: “let’s all vote ourselves rich.”

  66. Final Doom says:

    A little Erich Fromm thingy, from Baseline Scenario:

    “Our contemporary Western society, in spite of its material, intellectual and political progress, is increasingly less conducive to mental health, and tends to undermine the inner security, happiness, reason and the capacity for love in the individual; it tends to turn him into an automaton who pays for his human failure with increasing mental sickness, and with despair hidden under a frantic drive for work and so-called pleasure.

    Our “increasing mental sickness” may find expression in neurotic symptoms. These symptoms are con spicuous and extremely distressing. But “let us beware,” says Dr. Fromm, “of defining mental hygiene as the prevention of symptoms. Symptoms as such are not our enemy, but our friend; where there are symp toms there is conflict, and conflict always indicates that the forces of life which strive for integration and happiness are still fighting.” The really hopeless victims of mental illness are to be found among those who appear to be most normal. “Many of them are normal because they are so well adjusted to our mode of existence, because their human voice has been silenced so early in their lives, that they do not even struggle or suffer or develop symptoms as the neurotic does.” They are normal not in what may be called the absolute sense of the word; they are normal only in relation to a profoundly abnormal society. Their per fect adjustment to that abnormal society is a measure of their mental sickness. These millions of abnormally normal people, living without fuss in a society to which, if they were fully human beings, they ought not to be adjusted, still cherish “the illusion of indi­viduality,” but in fact they have been to a great extent deindividualized. Their conformity is developing into something like uniformity. But “uniformity and free dom are incompatible. Uniformity and mental health are incompatible too. . . . Man is not made to be an automaton, and if he becomes one, the basis for mental health is destroyed.”

    In the course of evolution nature has gone to endless trouble to see that every individual is unlike every other individual. We reproduce our kind by bringing the father’s genes into contact with the mother’s. These hereditary factors may be combined in an almost infinite number of ways. Physically and mentally, each one of us is unique. Any culture which, in the interests of efficiency or in the name of some political or religious dogma, seeks to standardize the human individual, commits an outrage against man’s biological nature.’”’s-all-about-solvency/#comment-54894

  67. make money says:


    A great contrarian indicator. He’s the equivalent of Bi.

  68. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    More tax news of the day:

    I said it before; IRS sometimes makes up the rules to suit their own ends. I question the constitutionality of this one though:

    “The Treasury Department and the Internal Revenue Service May 14 indicated in Notice 2010-41 their intent to issue regulations that will classify certain domestic partnerships as foreign for purposes of identifying the U.S. shareholders of a controlled foreign corporation (CFC) that must include in gross income the amounts specified under tax code Section 951(a) of such a CFC.

    Treasury and IRS have determined that, consistent with Section 7701(a), the general definition of a domestic partnership under Section 7701(a)(4), “in the case of certain partnerships owned wholly or partly by foreign corporations, is manifestly incompatible with the intent,” the service said in the notice. The regulations will, under certain circumstances, classify an otherwise domestic partnership as foreign solely for purposes of identifying the U.S. shareholders of a CFC required under Section 951(a) to include in gross income amounts with respect to such CFC, it said.”

    Soooooo, IRS has decided that it will not only disregard the form a domestic partnership takes, but will re-classify it as something else, not to collect additional taxes (there are likely none owed since this isn’t an avoidance transaction), but merely to discover who owns shares in a foreign corporation that the law doesn’t currently require to be reported.

  69. make money says:

    Timmy saying that Europe and the Euro will prevail and the Greek Subprime is contained makes me think I’ve seen this movie before.

  70. Final Doom says:

    jill (68)-

    Get back to work, drone. You have parasites to support.

  71. Dink says:

    $15,000 tax credit for NJ homebuyers potentially coming our way.

    Where does the money for this type of program come from anyway. I thought we were broke?

  72. Pat says:

    No, Jill. It’s not a being-treated- like-crap like the rest of you analogy.

    Reality is that we cannot, without a major shift in US tax policy, re-direct the decline in productive resources relative to other developing countries.

    So, because there’s been a private decline in earnings power, productive citizens will not stand by and permit public employees to out-earn them. Basically, the productive resources will not stand aside and permit the non-productive resources to gobble first from the trough.

    Fair or not, legal or illegal, that’s what you’re seeing and reading. Here’s an example. In private industry, you have profit centers and you have cost centers. A profit center at a bank would be the mortgage department. A cost center would be Human Resources. The HR department can try to operate as efficiently as possible, help make other employees as profitable as possible, and can try to bring in the best possible job candidates – but HR will not truly ever be a profit center at the bank. So do you think the mortgage guys making the money would stand by quietly if they found out that the median pay plus bennies in HR was three times that of their profit-based department?

    They will only stand by the status-quo if the cost to do so is less than the cost of alternate HR functions, such as outsourcing.

    At some point, recently, maybe it was the start of the recession (but I think it was earlier) the profit centers started to seek alternate forms of providing public services at lower costs.

    There will be some disjointed services and friction, but eventually, a new standard will be found that appeases the market.

  73. Libtard says:

    Excellent comment on the Jersey City gasoline bomb.

    “I think the intention for this is more malice as opposed to terrorism related.

    Besides having that device on Pallisades Avenue maybe instead of being a terrorism device is maybe more of a gentrification device.”

  74. Anon E. Moose says:

    68.Jill says:
    May 17, 2010 at 10:26 am
    What bothers me about you people who adopt the “You’ll join the private sector where you will be treated like cr@p like the rest of us and like it” attitude is that the benefits the public sector has USED TO BE HAD BY EVERYONE. Is this a “resistance is futile” thing?

    I disagree that ‘everyone’ had such benefits. Those benefits were offered by employers to recruit and retain talented workers. The owner of thwe company made the judgment that he made more money by paying those benefits, and getting the best workers available, then he saved by paying less. Even so, everyone can’t eb above average. Anything different is foggy memory and nostalgia (“You remember how much better nostalgia used to be?”).

    In the public sector, the unions used their power as a significant voting block to convice the politicians to spend Other People’s Money giving platinum benefits to each and every member of the union, plus protection from dismissal for things like incompetence or laziness, without the need for the workers to actually perform or anything. I think something similar happend in large corporations (GM, anyone?) to the extent that the executives are insulated from the long-term ramifications of their decisions.

  75. Knife Catcher - Painhrtz says:

    since, I’m not around on the weekend, I don’t know if anyone has commented on this, but have all of you noted the ramping up of attacks on Christie in both print and radio. I think the parasites are starting to get really scared. One radio ad pulled out all the stops, children, elderly, middle class, reduced services, and favoring the rich. It was a profound piece of propaganda, calling for a march on the statehouse.

  76. Essex says:

    76. Geez Pat. Astounding insights! Sure you aren’t ready to return to corporate Amerika. Wisdom like that just shouldn’t be hoarded.

  77. Libtard says:


    In many of my discussions with teachers, most are convinced that everyone in the private sector is paid like a CEO. It’s absolutely disturbing. Then when asked about the revenue situation, they always point to other places where budgets are bloated, such as police, fire protection and all administrators. We accept that the public sector is not a profit center. What we fail to accept is that the new normal, without tech bubbles and home ATMs, to create money out of thin air, requires less public service. Public sector workers have two choices really. Either cut your bennies or reduce the size of the workforce. Those selfish pricks have decided to go with the latter option.

  78. All "H-Train" Hype says:

    Pain 79:

    I saw a TV ad with the head of the NJEA. Man she is one angry lady. I told the wife that Christie got one up on her and gave her the perverbial punch between the eyes. Now she is trying to swing back and her attempts look pretty weak. The NJEA will never understand that NJ is broke, all they want is their $$$ and are willing to screw all the taxpayers of NJ to get it. I sympathize with the teachers but the NJEA is totally fighting the wrong fight.

  79. Outofstater says:

    #80 I liked her post. It was a good answer to Jill’s question.

  80. Essex says:

    82. Njea is being outmessaged. The lady is a new President there and obviously waaaay over her head.

  81. Outofstater says:

    The NJEA is a bunch of thugs. Always has been.

  82. Pat says:

    Essex, can you please respond to Jill’s question in a more appropriate way?

    Her question was, “Is this a “resistance is futile” thing?”

    If you believe Jill has a graduate degree in resource allocation and requires the use of three dollar words, do so.

    Sometimes I want to smack you for sure, but right now, you are making me smile. It’s always so obvious that you stand where you sit.

  83. Essex says:

    If she can ask the question again in English, then yes.

  84. Shore Guy says:

    BC and NJC,

    I just had a chance to look at Jersey Girl. It is a snap. No need to even try playing it. It is as simple a song as there is. I am good to go.

    It is a good song to strum with alcohol in he bloodstream. Hardly any thinking involved.

    Of course, it is not nearly as much fun as Rosalita, Working on the Highway, Caddilac Ranch, BTR, She’s the One, Badlands, Atlantic City, etc.

  85. House Whine says:

    What’s disturbing to me is that, for some reason, my NJ friends just assume that I too am totally anti-Christie, as they mostly are. Now I am getting kind of passionate about explaining my position. I almost have a canned speech in which I patiently explain the fiscal issues we face. Begrudgingly, some of them listen and admit that yes, something has to change in the public sector, especially with the benefits. Maybe some of it is getting through to them. I can only hope.

  86. Long-Legged Mr Hyde says:

    House Whine

    Doom would probably suggest you use a Benelli Nova to get the idea through their skull.

  87. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Is this one of those market top, frothy bubble indicators we have been talking about?

    “Sears, Kmart to Offer Cash-for-Gold Service

    Sears, which expanded its layaway program to help cash-strapped consumers pay for purchases during the recession, is now helping its customers exchange their jewelry for cash as gold prices soar.

    The new service, available at the jewelry departments of Sears and Kmart stores, allows customers to send their gold and silver items to Pro Gold Network, a company that buys precious metals from consumers. . . .”


    Sounds like a sell signal to me!

  88. Pat says:

    you gotta remember that nobody, I mean nobody, can figure out why Scars and Rad Shackup are still in business.

  89. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [93] gator

    What started the fishy smell was that anyone would want to locate a business campus in Liberty City.

  90. Outofstater says:

    #91 Yup and another sign is the guy at a local intersection here waving a placard with the price per ounce and “CASH FOR GOLD.” One day, it’s the gold guy, the next day it’s the guy with the sign, “Need work. New baby. Please help!” These are peculiar times.

  91. Final Doom says:

    hyde (90)-

    Benelli Nova pump-action 12 gauge, to be precise.

  92. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [95] stater

    For grins, I googled the phrase “smelt your own gold.”

    Wouldn’t you know . . .

    I got a lot of hits.

  93. d2b says:

    Lebron works for Nike and Lebron.

    Pat- tell your daughter to delete her last name from Facebook. I see more and more people with facebook names like Kevin G and Lauren P. Her friends will still find her.

  94. Knifecatcher - Painhrtz says:

    Hype, played hockey with a couple of teacher buddies on this weekend. They are pissed at the NJEA, both are at the 5 year point in their careers and feel the leadership is tossing the young teachers under the bus. Also think administrators are eating the budget, pretty much everything said here. I asked if they could leave the union would they, no hesitation response of a yes.

  95. Long-legged Mr Hyde says:


    00 buckshot I presume?

    Don’t forget the rubber coveralls, plastic tarps and bleach solution.

  96. Long-legged Mr Hyde says:

    Pain 99

    Yep, allowing teachers to opt out of the NJEA would be an instant death sentence for the criminal organization

  97. Against The Grain says:

    #101 – What laws has the NJEA violated?

  98. Long-legged Mr Hyde says:

    IMF: US Debt Nearing 100 Percent of GDP
    Monday, 17 May 2010 09:10 AM Article Font Size
    By: Frank McGuire

    The United States’ national debt will soon reach 100 percent of gross domestic product, the International Monetary Fund predicts in a new report.

    The sharp rise in U.S. debt started in 2006 and by 2015, the IMF suggests, debt could reach more than 100 percent of GDP.

    At the end of first quarter of 2010, the gross debt was 87.3 percent of GDP, of which 56.6 percent was held by the public, and 44.4 percent was intragovernmental, U.S. officials have said.

    The IMF predicts that the U.S. would need to reduce its structural deficit by the equivalent of 12 percent of GDP, a much larger portion than any other country analyzed except Japan.

    Greece, in the midst of a financial crisis, needs to reduce its structural deficit by just 9 percent of GDP, according to the IMF’s analysis.

  99. jvp says:

    Has anyone heard of a real estate broker trying to collect a recurring annual commission on a rental? My wife and I were looking in a north NJ location with very few rentals available so we had to go through a broker. We found a place and when I went through the lease I found this gem: ‘commission as described above due at each lease renewal’. We called the broker and she told us that was standard for NJ. We told her one time commission only or the deal was off and she caved in. I guess she were tired of eating ramen. Is this really standard for NJ? This is for the Short Hills/Livingston area.

  100. Long-legged Mr Hyde says:


    BULL$HIT!!!! recurring commission is BS! that is not common or standard.

  101. chicagofinance says:

    I just assumed that you had multiple Facebook profiles? If you are so concerned about privacy, why not just fabricate the identifying information, you seem to have great facility for it.

    Pat says:
    May 17, 2010 at 9:24 am
    Has anyone else bailed from FB during the last week of privacy hysteria?
    What’s going to happen to me as I float along, identity-less?

  102. Shore Guy says:

    “s this one of those market top, frothy bubble indicators we have been talking about”

    Nope. This is the sign of total destitution. No cash and then no credit. Now hawking grandma’s rings

  103. Outofstater says:

    Serious question: Why is it legal to force someone to join a union in order to get a job?

  104. Pat says:

    I must be really, really good at it. I may be anonymous on this blog, but I’d appreciate you telling me what fabrication I have a great facility for.

  105. Libtard says:

    “For grins, I googled the phrase ‘smelt your own gold.'”

    I bet you would get much more interesting results if you Googled the phrase, ‘smelt your own farts.'”

  106. Jim says:

    Just one more reason why this country is in sharp decline- giving out IDs to illegals. O’bama and his dream team of s0cialist liberals and supporters are the end of the US as we know it. If they are illegal send them back to where they belong.

  107. make money says:


    In 2007, many people on thsi board asked/begged God for one more bubble. We have one in shiny just getting hotter and you want to sell now?

    Sell when we get to 2:1 with DOW. Until then buy buy buy.

  108. Long-legged Mr Hyde says:

    make 113

    2:1 may be pushing it. Anything over 1:1 is RED HOT and your playing with fire. Above 1:1 and the burst will most likely be very rapid and could easily wipe out speculators who arent very careful.

  109. Long-legged Mr Hyde says:

    make we are only slightly over 0.1 right now. 1:1 is still a substantial distance away. I hope you are seriously hedged if you are going to ride it to the bleeding edge.

  110. meter says:

    @111 –

    Moron. Where were you when Bush and his cohorts pulled for the same thing?

    I get it: it’s only evil when someone with a (D) after his/her name suggests it. Go back to sleep.

  111. randyj says:

    how is it a sell signal that a bunch of commercials are airing to BUY YOUR GOLD off of you?

    The buyer intends to hold the gold and sell it back to you at higher prices.

    by taking advantage of the J6P’s cluelessness about the coming USD collapse these guys are trading worthless FRN’s for your gold.

    how is that the sign of a top? they’re not selling anything…


  112. Long-legged Mr Hyde says:


    Nope, its “evil” when anyone does it. If you entered the country illegally you should be deported, end of story.

    of course you could offer national ID’s to all illegal immigrants and then in 2 or 3 years use the info to go pick them all up at home. A plan any devious politician would be proud of.

  113. randyj says:

    meter 116-

    because both sides have proposed it, means there’s no reason to be angry about it? what kind of crappy reasoning is that?

  114. Long-legged Mr Hyde says:


    of course you use a false flag event starring an illegal alien as the impetus for suddenly deporting the majority of them.

    Staged properly, such a move would have popular support

  115. Long-legged Mr Hyde says:


    As a bonus, such a move could destabilize the mexican government. Now being good disaster capitalists/illuminati, I’m sure there is some way we could easily capitalize on that.

    There is the obvious arms angle of selling weapons to both sides of the ensuing conflict and our banks handling funding for both sides and taking a small cut for laundering the funds through the US stock market. But we can do better then that. lets brainstorm!

  116. NJGator says:

    104 JVP – That’s a load of bunk. We got our first rental in Montclair via a realtor and only paid a one time commission.

  117. Jim says:

    They are having the same problem with illegals in Europe but they don’t give them IDs, a driver’s license or health coverage. They send them back to where they came from. The system we have no longer has the money to support this type of nonsense. And what is up with the name calling, haven’t you graduated 3rd grade yet?

  118. make money says:

    make we are only slightly over 0.1 right now. 1:1 is still a substantial distance away. I hope you are seriously hedged if you are going to ride it to the bleeding edge.

    Hedged? I don’t know how to play that game so I’m sitting on Physical.

  119. Final Doom says:

    hyde (100)-

    Hey, don’t worry. I’ve watched Pulp Fiction like 12 times.

  120. safe as houses says:
  121. Final Doom says:

    Somebody should take the wood from my coffin and burn down my house with it.

  122. chicagofinance says:

    The Wall Street Journal
    MAY 17, 2010, 9:50 A.M. ET

    Reinventing Old Site of Bell Labs Is Tricky


    HOLMDEL TOWNSHIP, N.J.—Bowing to local opposition, a developer says he is ready to abandon plans for new housing on the sprawling grounds of the former Bell Laboratories complex here if he can proceed with the rest of the project.

    The two-million-square-foot Bell Labs building in Holmdel is the largest fully vacant office building in the U.S., according to commercial-property data firm CoStar Group Inc. Ever since the storied Bell Labs vacated in 2007, the future of the building and the property’s 473 acres of ponds, lawns and parking lots has been a major political issue in this suburban community of 17,000 people that is a 40-mile drive south of Manhattan.

    The atrium inside the old Bell Labs building. New interior plans call for creating shops, offices and a hotel.

    A Lakewood, N.J., real-estate company, Somerset Development, contracted to buy the building from Alcatel-Lucent in 2008. Last year, it submitted a plan for 398 housing units surrounding the building and to create shops, offices, a hotel and fitness facilities inside it.

    To meet local concerns about an influx of new residents who would burden roads and schools, Somerset President Ralph Zucker reduced his plan to building about 30 large homes. Now, he says, he’s willing to forgo housing outside the building entirely.

    “Today we are ready, willing and able to focus on the building,” Mr. Zucker said in an interview last week. “I almost want to say to the mayor and the township council, ‘You win.’ This conversation can’t go on forever.”

    It’s not clear whether Mr. Zucker’s move will be enough to convince skeptical local officials. He says he’s now seeking to schedule a follow-up meeting with township officials.

    “It comes down to the whole package,” said Holmdel Mayor Serena DiMaso, a Republican. “I don’t want anything that would make it a city, that would make it a destination.”

    Many people here say that in a perfect world, a single office tenant would take all of the space—just as Bell Labs, once the research arm of AT&T Corp. and now of French communications company Alcatel-Lucent, did for decades. But with many corporations reducing the amount of space they use, renting out the entire building to an office tenant is a daunting challenge.

    “There are no two-million-square-foot tenants that are going to go down there right now,” said Robert Donnelly, a Cushman & Wakefield Inc. broker representing Alcatel-Lucent.

    When Lucent Technologies first announced the sale of the building in 2006, the purchasing developer, Preferred Unlimited Inc., said it would demolish the property in favor of smaller buildings.

    The plan drew opposition from people who had worked at the Bell Labs, the site of key discoveries in cellphone, optics, and computer technology. Architecture groups also opposed the demolition, arguing that the Eero Saarinen-designed modernist structure should be preserved.

    Supporters say that the building’s mirror-like facade is among the first glass “curtain walls”—outer walls that don’t provide structural support—in the U.S.

    In late 2007, the deal with Preferred unraveled. Somerset signed a contract to buy the building from Alcatel-Lucent in May 2008.

    Mr. Zucker, Mr. Donnelly, and Alcatel-Lucent all declined to comment on the details of Mr. Zucker’s contract for the property, but Mr. Donnelly said that the asking price at the time was in the $50 million to $100 million range.

    Two years later, with zoning changes to the building to allow for retail and residential uses still not approved by the township, the deal still hasn’t closed.

    Mr. Zucker says he’s willing to wait for significant progress toward the approvals for another six months to a year before walking away from the contract without closing the deal.

    Mr. Zucker envisions a renovation of the building that would allow it to work as a profitable real-estate project without being torn down. The five-story-high, quarter-mile-long atrium would turn into a pedestrian street with “sidewalk” cafes and giant video screens.

    Mr. Zucker says he and his partners are ready to invest their own equity to begin the building’s renovation, and hope to attract bank financing after they sign up their first tenants. He says the project is still viable—though “not as great as it could have been”—without housing outside the building.

    Local residents and officials, meanwhile, are weighing the benefits of a higher tax base against the burden on the township’s schools and infrastructure.

    “We’ve come a long way from something that’s totally unacceptable to something that looks like it may work,” said Democrat Janet Berk, who serves on a municipal subcommittee evaluating what to do with the Bell Labs site.

    Write to Anton Troianovski at

  123. make money says:

    RANDY 117,

    SPOT ON. The dealers are desperately trying to get their hands on physical. Unless you need to cover losses from other investments, there is absolutely no reason to sell shiny.

  124. Final Doom says:

    “When the history of this time is written people will say – how in the world did they believe that a few people in a secret room can decide what interest rates should be, how much the money supply should be, who should fail, what worthless assets taxpayers have to buy. It is absolutely bizarre.”

    -Ron Paul

  125. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [113] make

    I recall the discussion about how, when cab drivers and doormen were talking about shiny, it was time to sell.

    The idea that Sears is getting into the buying business strikes me as one of those moments.

    Not like Sears has had their finger on the pulse of much of anything in the last few decades. They can’t get retail right, and now they are gonna try to get in on shiny? I don’t think that they are that smart.

    And I am not greedy. Remember, pigs get slaughtered, and I will take a 25% gain and miss out on 40%, rather than risk holding to 40% and seeing it drop by 35%.

  126. Final Doom says:

    chi (129)-

    Two words: daisy cutter.

  127. meter says:

    @118, 119 –

    I’m not disagreeing. I’m vehemently against it as my wife and more than a few friends have spent consider time and resources to come into this country legally.

    My point was this cute little preface:

    “O’bama and his dream team of s0cialist liberals and supporters are the end of the US as we know it.”

    My point remains. Was it a s0cialist plot to end the US as we know it when Bush and Cheney and those scuzbags were proposing same?

    (I’m guessing no.)

  128. A.West says:

    I don’t get it. Holmdel has so many employers that the town wants to block any redeployment of a huge office complex? Why does the town oppose to residential & commercial development? Beggars can’t be chosers.

  129. Long-legged Mr Hyde says:

    Meter 134

    They are all fascists of one breed or another

  130. Jim says:

    Getting your buttons pressed are we? I never said I supported Bush.

  131. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [117] randy

    The gold buyers are not offering you the current price. They make their money by buying gold from you at what may work out to be 3-400 per ounce, smelting it, and selling the physical at something closer to spot.

    Further, it does not follow that everyone getting into this business means the price of shiny will go higher.

  132. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [134] meter

    I seem to recall that the Bush program (which everyone hated), didn’t call for amnesty (though he was accused of that).

  133. A.West says:

    I’d be much more worried if Sears was selling bars for cash rather than selling cash for gold. Anyone have a guess about the huge markups I imagine these jewelery buyers charge for smelting gold from desperate folks?
    I’ve been seeing/hearing ads for ridding oneself of “old and unwanted” jewelery for a while. My guess is they’re keeping about half the $ value of gold. Sears deals with a lot of dumb and desperate folks who might still have a little bit of gold left, unlike the folks at k-mart who already sold it for crack and cheetos.

  134. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [140] a. west

    See prior post. My info. is that they are making more than that, perhaps upwards of 75%

  135. Shore Guy says:

    ” Why is it legal to force someone to join a union in order to get a job?”

    In the private sector, it is because the Wagner Act allows closed shops, except in places where the states have adopted “Right-to-Work laws.”

    In the public sector, ther is no mandate; however, since the union represents all members of the bargaining unit, regardless of membership status, the unions are authorized to collect a representation fee, to cover the cost of the services provided – thus releiving unions of the risk of “free riders” enjoying the benefits and protections bargained for without paying a dime.

  136. Shore Guy says:

    When we see McD0nald$ accepting wedding rings in exchange for fries and a burger, we will know we are nearly at bottom.

  137. meter says:

    Thierry Henry to come to the Red Bulls?

    Say wha?

  138. Shore Guy says:

    Can we call the proposed buyer credit a slump pump?

  139. jcer says:

    Poor, suffering people enduring economic hardships in a period of high gold prices will yield many CASH for GOLD type programs all over.

  140. chicagofinance says:

    A.West says:
    May 17, 2010 at 3:53 pm

    Chifi,I don’t get it. Holmdel has so many employers that the town wants to block any redeployment of a huge office complex? Why does the town oppose to residential & commercial development? Beggars can’t be chosers.

    West: It is a nice piece of property, and relative to the rest of the country, a ridiculously expensive place to locate a corporate headquarters. It is basically a mile to Exit 114 on the parkway, so it is easy on/off. The area is really quiet and rural. I assume that the only reason AT&T was allowed to build there over 30 years ago is that the entire complex would be self-contained and traffic would focus on normal business hours.

    Any of these other adapted uses would seriously fcuk up the character of the area. I see the point of the mayor pushing back on the idea of making it a “destination”. Basically the whole strip of land that is dissected by state route 34 is pretty quiet and really quaint, but surrounded by the castoffs of Staten Island. If you build some pile of crap it would have two negative effects: #1 draw in the clowns; #2 be a natural dump-off the GSP for any concert at PNC or any time the traffic backs up and you want to blow off 2-3 hours. It would be a 24 hours scum fest.

  141. freedy says:

    the mets may be making a change.

    show somebody the door

  142. d2n says:

    Ironic story #1-
    Morgan Stanley doing a study on strategic defaults.

    Ironic Story #2-
    The rat showed up at a construction site near us today. The rat is a blow up prop that the trade unions used to protest the hiring of non-union labor. The workers were there from 8:00 to 4:30. The rat and union protesters worked from 10:00 to 3:00.

  143. Pat says:

    hurray for the playas, freedy.

  144. Final Doom says:

    Mets should bring back Steve Phillips.

    He could be combo GM/mascot.

  145. Outofstater says:

    #142 Thanks for the explanation, Shore. I think it’s nuts but then, I live in a right to work state.

  146. Al "Fat Thumbery" Gore says:

    Sell gold?

    The dollar isnt a terribly flawed currency.

    I trust the UN and the Fed Reserve.

    The devalued Euro is going to make the hard working Europeans more competitive.

    JP Morgan is trustworthy and dont worry the CFTC has a close eye on things.

    Americans have favorable demographics and they will innovate their way to prosperity. This can only be accomplished after everything is nationalized.

  147. Pat says:

    Does nationalized mean bulldozed?

  148. House Whine says:

    Immigration I.D. cards in Trenton and Princeton: allows illegals access to libraries, medical centers, and charitable organizations’ services. Hmmmm.

  149. speedkillsu says:

    me thinks Robert Vicino has been lurking here ..Doomsday safe-haven offered under Mojave Desert BARSTOW, Calif. – A company with a doomsday plan is taking money for what it promises will be a comfortable, nuke-proof bunker under the Mojave Desert, with an atrium, gym and jail, and sloppy joes and pearl potatoes on the menu.

    Robert Vicino, who runs the Del Mar-based company called Vivos, has collected deposits on half the 132 spaces planned in the 13,000-square-foot bunker in Barstow.

    The facility is among several popping up across the country as fears of doomsday have been fueled recently by strong earthquakes, terrorism and predictions of the world’s end in 2012 when the ancient Mayan calendar is said to end.

  150. safe as houses says:

    #156 speed,

    And if they run out of toilet paper in their doompound, someone in China has provided a handy pictorial on what to do.

  151. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Listening now to Stephen Moore give a talk. Great tax stats that clearly illusrate how truly screwed we are.

    Will blog on this later as I am in the front row.

  152. freedy says:

    illegas with ID cards. We’re finished, Chris
    will never pull it off.

    Is Montclair next?

  153. Diane says:

    104 & 122
    There are so many rentals on the market without a RE fee. Places that I looked at recently that did have a fee, I told the agent that I would not be willing to pay that amount. This was 3 months ago, at least 2 of the 3 with a fee are still on the market. My new place had no fee.

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