November home prices disappoint, double dip likely

From CNBC:

Price Drop Points to Likely Double Dip in Housing Market

Single-family home prices fell for a fifth straight month in November and a double-dip in home prices could be confirmed by spring, a closely watched survey said Tuesday.

The Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller composite index of 20 metropolitan areas declined 0.5 percent in November from October on a seasonally adjusted basis, though it was not as sharp as the 0.8 percent fall expected by economists.

Prices have fallen 1.6 percent in the past year, sharper than the 1.4 percent predicted by economists polled by Reuters.

“Everything in this report is unfortunately still sagging and still pointing downward,” David Blitzer, S&P 500 Index Committee chairman, said in a CNBC interview just after the report was released. “The recent news across the board on housing except for existing home sales has been very, very disappointing. We still seem to be at best scraping along the bottom.”

From Bloomberg:

Home Prices in U.S. Declined 1.6% From Year Earlier

Residential real-estate prices dropped in November by the most in a year, signaling housing has yet to join the U.S. rebound.

The S&P/Case-Shiller index of home values in 20 cities fell 1.6 percent from November the prior year, the biggest 12-month decrease since December 2009, the group said today in New York. The decline matched the median forecast of economists surveyed by Bloomberg News.

Mounting foreclosures will probably throw more properties on the market this year, further depressing prices, homeowners’ equity and construction. The lack of a sustained housing rebound and unemployment above 9 percent are among reasons the Federal Reserve may announce this week it’ll complete a second round of stimulus that will pump $600 billion into the economy by June.

“The housing market is in a state of hibernation,” said Zach Pandl, an economist at Nomura Securities International Inc. in New York. “We have a very severe foreclosure problem. Prices are going to keep weakening this year. Weakness in the housing market is likely to keep the Fed relatively cautious in its statement tomorrow.”

This entry was posted in Economics, Housing Bubble, National Real Estate. Bookmark the permalink.

86 Responses to November home prices disappoint, double dip likely

  1. dan says:


  2. grim says:

    From the WSJ:

    Home Prices Move Down

    U.S. home prices fell in November, continuing a downward trend that began in August, according to the S&P Case-Shiller home-price indexes.

    “With these numbers, more analysts will be calling for a double-dip in home prices,” David Blitzer, chairman of S&P’s index committee, said. Mr. Blitzer last month predicted that the double-dip for the housing sector had nearly arrived as six cities hit their lowest levels since home prices began dropping in 2006 and 2007.

    The indexes, based on the three-month averages of home prices, turned lower in August for the first time in four months, a delayed response to housing-market weakness after federal home-buyer tax credits expired in April. Though home prices in November remained above lows in spring 2009, prices in eight markets — Atlanta, Charlotte, Detroit, Las Vegas, Miami, Portland, Ore., Seattle and Tampa — fell below those levels.

    The Case-Shiller index of 10 major metropolitan areas fell 0.8% and the 20-city index fell 1% last month from October.

    They were down 0.4% and 1.6%, respectively, from a year earlier. Adjusted for seasonal factors, the sequential declines were 1%.

  3. dan says:

    I guess that’s why every realtor is now screaming you have to worry about interest rates since the whole house market recovery thing ain’t workin.

  4. grim says:

    From CNN/Money:

    Home price slump deepens

    The latest downturn put prices 1.6% lower than 12 months ago, slightly worse than industry expectations. A panel of analysts put together by had forecast a 1.5% annual decline.

    The loss was “bigger than I expected,” said Pat Newport, a real estate market analyst for IHS Global Insight. “I think it’s still a response to the [home buyer] tax credit going away.”

  5. Schrodinger's Cat says:


    I wonder if how this works out with regard to the NJ ruling.

    Insurance Companies Sue Bank Of America Over “Massive Mortgage Fraud”, Find 91% Of Securitized Loans Are Misrepresented

    In carrying out its review of the approximately 19,000 Countrywide loan files, MBIA found that 91% of the defaulted or delinquent loans in those securitizations contained material deviations from Countrywide’s underwriting guidelines. MBIA’s report showed that the loan applications frequently “(i) lack key documentation, such as verification of borrower assets or income; (ii) include an invalid or incomplete appraisal; (iii) demonstrate fraud by the borrower on the face of the application; or (iv) reflect that any of borrower income, FICO score, debt, DTI [debt-to-income,] or CLTV [combined loan-to-value] ratios, fails to meet stated Countrywide guidelines (without any permissible exception).” The plaintiff counsel is Bernstein Litowitz, which was made famous from the WorldCom litigation. We doubt they will settle for a few measily pennies on the dollar. As for the list of litigants, it is a veritable who’s who of the insurance industry: Dexia Holdings, FSA Asset Management, New York Life iInsurance Company, The Mainstay Funds, Teachers Insurance & Annuity, TIAA-CREF Life Insurance, and College Retirement Equities Fund.

  6. grim says:

    From HousingWire:

    8 cities reach new lows in home prices: S&P/Case-Shiller

    Eight markets — Atlanta; Charlotte, N.C.; Detroit; Las Vegas; Miami; Portland, Ore.; Seattle and Tampa, Fla., — hit their lowest points since home values peaked in 2006 and 2007, meaning that average home prices in those markets have fallen even further than the lows set in the spring of 2009.

    Since May 2010, home prices have slid. The 10-city composite has re-entered negative territory with a -0.4% annual growth rate in November, versus the +5.4% reported six months prior in May, and the 20-city composite was down 1.6% in November versus its +4.6% May print.

    “With these numbers more analysts will be calling for a double-dip in home prices. Let’s take a moment to define a double-dip as seeing the 10- and 20-city composites set new post-peak lows. The series are now only 4.8% and 3.3% above their April 2009 lows, suggesting that a double-dip could be confirmed before spring.

  7. Anon E. Moose says:

    Cat [5];

    Completely different issues. The NJ case Juice posted yesterday was about a deadbeat trying to squeeze another couple of years rent-free (five and counting, by my reading of the case) – Deadbeat v. Foreclosing bank. The case you cited is MBS investors v. securitizing bank for misrepresenting the goods.

  8. 30 year realtor says:

    Moose, still wondering if you recognize the differences between Alvarado and Ibanez decisions?

  9. JJ says:

    Now this double dip title is interesting. Any ladies on board I would like your opinion.

    Here is my double dip dillema . I went to a girls wedding I knew and sat at singles table. Girl had money so she rented a bus to pick up all her single friends in city and take them to LI for wedding, but has lots of drinks and stuff, party bus. At wedding I sat next to girl who was on bus and we all were getting drunk.

    Of course girls like to get laid when they are single and a friend is getting married. So I get off bus at her apt. we do it and we both pass out, anyhow I wake up around 7am with morning wood and so what the heck stink breath and all give her the “double dip” anyhow around 45 minutes later get out of there and figured what the heck lets see what she is doing next week. So go up to her place we go on a date I start to go up to her place after date and she said she does not put out on first date, usually 6 0r 7 dates. I go what, we already did it night of wedding she goes that does not count, that was a wedding hook-up thing. I then say what about morning after, she says that was a “double dip” which is same as night before. Needless to say I did not take her on a second date.

    So ladies, what is this “double dip” rule? Does this make sense?

    If I hook up we are drunk ok I can see it being a hook-up. But come morning, in the ugly daylight when we are as sticky as a day old crispy cream dead sober doing it again how can you evoke the “double dip” rule.

  10. Juice Box says:

    re: #5 -Cat going to need new more popcorn

    Special note. NJ bankruptcy case is mentioned. Kemp .v. Countrywide

    In Kemp .v. Countrywide Home Loans, Inc., Bkrtcy. No. 08-18700 (D.N.J.), Countrywide sought to prove that the Bank of New York, as trustee for an RMBS issuing trust that purportedly held Mr. Kemp’s mortgage, was entitled to enforce the mortgage. Countrywide presented testimony by Linda DeMartini, who had been employed by Countrywide Servicing for almost ten years as of August 2009 and was then a supervisor and operational team leader for the Litigation Management Department of Countrywide Servicing. Ms. DeMartini testified that, in her extensive career in the mortgage loan servicing business of Countrywide, “I had to know about everything . . . .” She testified that Countrywide Home originated Kemp’s loan in 2006 and transferred it to the Bank of New York as trustee for the issuing trust, but that Countrywide Servicing retained the original note in its own possession and never delivered it to the Bank of New York because Countrywide Servicing was the servicer for the loan.

  11. Shore Guy says:

    We are all Sans- culottes now.

  12. Good for U. I think its one of the most informative post in this theme. Lookin’ forward.

  13. Anon E. Moose says:

    30-yr [8];

    Unless you’d like to hire me, I read and opine at my pleasure, not on command.

  14. Schrodinger's Cat says:

    Juice 10

    Some of this seems to conflict with the NJ ruling. of course the case is open so it may be pointless.

    From the legal filing:

    H. Countrywide Failed To Ensure That Title To The Underlying Loans Was Effectively Transferred

    147. The rules for these transfers are governed by the law of the state where the property is located, by the terms of the pooling and servicing agreement (“PSA”) for each securitization, and by the law governing the issuing trust (with respect to matters of trust law). Generally, state laws and the PSAs require the promissory note and security instrument to be transferred by indorsement, in the same way that a check can be transferred by indorsement, or by sale. In addition, state laws generally require that the trustee have physical possession of the original, manually signed note in order for the loan to be enforceable by the trustee against the borrower in case of default.

    148. In order to preserve the bankruptcy-remote status of the issuing trusts in RMBS transactions, the notes and security instruments are generally not transferred directly from the mortgage loan originator to the trust. Rather, the notes and security instruments are generally initially transferred from the originator (e.g., Countrywide Home) to the depositor (e.g., CWALT), either directly or via one or more special-purpose entities established by Countrywide Financial. After this initial transfer to the depositor, the depositor transfers the notes and security interests to the issuing trust for the particular securitization. Each of these transfers must be valid under applicable state law in order for the trust to have good title to the mortgage loans.

  15. Essex says:

    9. All the ladies left the blog — my take– joke em if they can’t take a f-ck.

  16. chicagofinance says:

    Sans blog ladies, you are the most appropriate to respond given your man breasts….

    15.Essex says:
    January 25, 2011 at 11:26 am
    9. All the ladies left the blog — my take– joke em if they can’t take a f-ck.

  17. Schrodinger's Cat says:

    More from the filing

    The Offering Documents for the Certificates at issue, which were relied upon by Plaintiffs, represented, among other things, that (i) the loans packaged into the Certificates were underwritten pursuant to the Countrywide Defendants’ specific loan origination guidelines; (ii) Countrywide Home (defined below) evaluated the prospective borrowers’ credit standing and repayment ability prior to approving any loan; (iii) when the Countrywide Defendants’ made an exception to the stated underwriting guidelines, they did so on “a case-by-case basis” and only if “compensating factors” justifying the exception were present; (iv) almost every mortgaged property received an independent appraisal which conformed to acceptable standards and formed the basis of its loan-to-value (“LTV”) ratio, an important metric to MBS investors; (v) the loans selected for securitization were chosen “in a manner [not] intended to affect the interests of the certificateholders adversely”; (vi) the “AAA” or other investment-grade ratings assigned to the Certificates were accurate reflections of the Certificates’ credit quality; and (vii) the Certificates’ issuing trusts possessed good title to the underlying mortgage loans. Each of these material representations was false when made, and Defendants knew or recklessly disregarded the falsity of these representations. Plaintiffs relied on the misrepresentations and suffered losses as a result.

  18. 30 year realtor says:

    Moose – If you would like to be hired, could you please tell me your field of expertise and what it is you do? You know I don’t want to waste my ill gotten gains from being a used house salesman.

  19. Schrodinger's Cat says:


    Another fun one for you
    JP Morgan Sold Investors MBS Covered By “SACK OF SHIT” Loans… Then Shorted All Those With Exposure: A Goldman-AIG Redux

  20. Anon E. Moose says:

    30-yr [18];

    In this case, my field of expertise will be the Alvarado (NJ) and Ibanez (MA) opinions, and I will happily contrast the two. I can have a written opinion in 7 days, sooner if needed, with a premium for the rush. I’ll need payment in advance to begin work. Ask Grim for my e-mail if you’d like to proceed.

  21. Juice Box says:

    re: #14 Cat – Remember Fannie settled with BOA earlier this month over the Countryslime mortgages for cents on the dollar. Last year many CDO bondholders PIMCO, the Fed via Blackrock asked BOA for 47 Billion in putbacks, and they did not get it so now of course the putback lawsuits for BAC are really just beginning. Exposure is estimated for BOA anywhere for $35 Billion to as high as $100 Billion and growing as the housing market continues to decline. BAC said it is going to fight in shareholder meetings. BofA CEO Brian Moynihan said that the bank will “defend our shareholders” by disputing any unjustified demands to buy back defective mortgages.

    BOA really has no choice but to fight given the size and scope of the buyback requests, that is unless Bergabe decides to do another cash for trash program.

    I think they might be the first TBTF to be dismantled. Who needs a TBTF headquartered in Hickville anyway?

  22. Schrodinger's Cat says:

    Hey, look at Egypt! Sounds like they were jealous of Tunisia’s little Rave the other day.

  23. sas says:

    what time is the union address tonight?

    i gotta make sure I’m over the GW.


  24. Painhrtz says:

    Cat – Let’s just call it what it is a holy war and rock on like its 1399. Last religion standing.

    Being an atheist though I would like to have Conscientious objector status to refrain from any and all hostilities on foreign soil

  25. 30 year realtor says:

    Moose – All of a sudden you aren’t free with your opinion on the subject of deadbeats, the courts and matters related to bank abuses of foreclosure and recording statutes? Normally my comments on this subject would have brought on an extended rant from you. Seems kind of strange.

    Pay for your opinion? You’re a funny guy!

  26. chicagofinance says:

    Just brutal:
    36% Pass CFA Exam in December

  27. Shore Guy says:

    “36% Pass CFA Exam in December”

    Not to fear, they can always sell real estate.

  28. chicagofinance says:

    The end is nigh…..
    A foul-mouthed murderer who made a raunchy request to a Brooklyn judge before his sentencing on Monday received plenty of prison time to rethink his choice of words.

    Zaire Paige, 24, was hit with 107 years to life for killing Lethania Garcia and wounding four others in a brazen October 2008 Fort Greene shootout.

    But before getting the maximum possible sentence, Paige tried to get one last dig in at the judge, Vincent Del Giudice, telling him, “With all due respect and from the bottom of my heart, suck my d—.”

    Without missing a beat, Del Diudice fired off a comeback and then tough justice.

    “I respectfully decline your offer,” the judge dead-panned. “You are a danger to all civilized members of society.”

  29. JJ says:

    Just wondering why are realtors usually not that hot. It is usually a back-up plan or second career, if they made is a college major and head young good looking people doing it I would be more likely to buy. I am not talking putting out, but years ago in pharma sales girls dressed nice, maybe put hand on doctors knees, listened when wife wouldn’t and gave doc chance to go to dinner with a hot girl, maybe they also threw in a vacation to good customers.

    I get old fat housewifes and second career older men who want me to pay them 60K commission to buy a house.

    Shore Guy says:
    January 25, 2011 at 12:53 pm

    “36% Pass CFA Exam in December”

    Not to fear, they can always sell real estate.

  30. JJ says:

    T.O. and Ochocinco Praise Rex and the Jets!

    by Phil Sullivan on January 25, 2011
    On the T.Ocho Show Tuesday night Terrell Owens and Chad Ochocinco discuss the future of the New York Jets. They both state that they would love the opportunity to play for a coach like Rex Ryan. Some other quotes:

    “Jets will make it to the AFC Championship game every year, based off of heart, will and the head coach that they have” – Ochocinco “I would do anything to play for someone like Rex Ryan” – Ochocinco

  31. Getting harder and harder to fabricate good news these days.

    “And so the latest shoe to drop in robosigning falls. Diana Olick reports that BofA has stopped its issuing notices of default in non-judicial states, such as the all critical California and Arizona, which explains the dramatic drop off in NODs in January. Previously explained by Koolaid guzzlers as an indication of economic improvement, it turns out this was merely yet more fraud being perpetrated by the big banks, which are now trying to cover up their slime trail. According to Bank of America’s Dan Frahm, “We did conduct a review of the Notice of Default process. As a result we stopped the NOD process in non-judicial states.” And so the double dip just got far worse.”

  32. Anon E. Moose says:

    30-yr [26];

    Just like a used house pusher, this guy’s gotta eat. Unlike a used house pusher, you can evaluate for yourself in advance exactly what services you’d like to purchase, how much you’d like to pay for them, and be confident that the substance of my opinion will not be influenced by the circumstances of my compensation.

    Charity is wonderful, when I decide to be charitable. When someone else decides I’m going to be charitable, its called larceny, theft or occasionally government taxation.

  33. 30 Year (26)-

    You’d get more pleasure from a syphilitic tranny hooker on 10th Av. than from paying Moose for a legal opinion.

  34. moose (33)-

    The substance of your opinion can’t be influenced by the circumstances of your compensation, because nothing can outweigh the influence of your own self-interest.

  35. Painhrtz says:

    So m*lf gets you into moderation. JJ would have done my realtor she was hot in an American Beauty Annette Benning kind of way

    Guess my standards are different, then again Idon’t have the stories and penicillin prescriptions for leading the bland life I have had to this point.

  36. Anon E. Moose says:

    Debt [35];

    …nothing can outweigh the influence of your own self-interest.

    Which has been my point about Realtors all along. Glad to see you coming around to reason.

  37. JJ says:

    What is her name, I want to look up her realtor picture to see if she is hot.

    Hear of buying a home from a snake, but buying a home full of snakes

    Painhrtz says:
    January 25, 2011 at 2:22 pm

    So m*lf gets you into moderation. JJ would have done my realtor she was hot in an American Beauty Annette Benning kind of way

    Guess my standards are different, then again Idon’t have the stories and penicillin prescriptions for leading the bland life I have had to this point.

  38. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [26] realtor

    Hey, you asked Moose for his professional opinion on a legal matter. We call that work product. Not only should he not give it away, he must take care to not do so randomly, lest he inadvertently create an attorney-client relationship. Strange as it sounds, it can happen in the surreal world of bar oversight, or a troll may take the opportunity to make trouble for said attorney with the Office of Attorney Discipline.

    I’ve done the same thing when a troll wants me to opine in scholarly fashion.

  39. RGB says:

    Anyone know of a good realtor in the Holmdel area?

  40. chicagofinance says:

    End is nigh….fast food edition…..

  41. chicagofinance says:

    40.RGB says:
    January 25, 2011 at 3:20 pm
    Anyone know of a good realtor in the Holmdel area?

    Nancy Boylan / Colts Neck Realty

  42. JJ says:

    Nancy Boylan has no pictures anywhere, what is point, most realtors I know have their pictures on their website.

    Her name sounds like the name of the main character in the show Weeds, is that even a real name.

  43. Barbara says: is your friend.

  44. Libtard says:

    Our oblivion has been fully embraced.

    Gator and I now own two homes. The multi in Montclair and now a home in the north end of Glen Ridge. Will post the very interesting story later tonight. I fully anticipate the ten year to drop 1% tomorrow and housing to implode by February. Went to get the property card on the home from the tax assessors office and it is so much better in the Ridge than in Montclair.

  45. Shore Guy says:

    B.O. trying to salvage presidency by pretending o care about budget shortfall:

    If he can make the budget flat for the last two years of his presidency, he can cut below current levels. His call for a flat budget seems an attempt to avoid real cuts.

  46. Shore Guy says:

    His spending freeze proposal — one of several that leaked hours before the speech — marks a modest extension of his earlier proposal to freeze spending for three years. It comes amid other signs that Obama is not going to embrace any of the controversial provisions laid out by his deficit commission two months ago — despite his expected call for reducing the deficit in general terms. He is expected to sidestep specifics, instead calling for members of both parties to work together to tackle the problem, according to congressional and administration officials.

    To a striking degree, Obama appears poised to recycle themes and ideas he has offered many times before.

    He will address “investments” in education, infrastructure and energy innovation in the speech — three ideas he first started discussing as far back as his first address to Congress in 2009. That same year, he banned earmarks from his big economic stimulus bill; Tuesday night, he will call for an earmark ban budget-wide.

  47. Shore Guy says:


    At least NOW you two will be paying your fair share of property taxes. Attaboy.

  48. Shore Guy says:

    Is that 10″ or 5″ twice?

  49. Painhrtz says:

    Stu so your tax bill is north of 50K for the two houses. Awesome : )

    Congrats gator for firmly possessing stu’s cherries in your purse.

  50. Shore Guy says:


    Have you heard of the double floating-gate field effect transistor ?

  51. relo says:

    Stu and Crew,

    Congrats and best of luck.

  52. Libtard says:

    Tax bill is now 13+16 for a whopping total of 29K. Gator is already at work and I expect to see that second number drop by at least 3k. So call it 13K + 13K. Fortunately, my Montclair multi is cash positive and any impending increases will be made up by my tenants. The real fun number is my mortgage debt. And if anyone was wondering, piggyback loans are alive and well for those with decent credit scores. I’m starting my taxes tonight. Good times ahead.

  53. Libtard says:

    And in other good news, my company reestablished my 401k match (at a lower level than before they rescinded the benefit). Unfortunately, I have no money to put into it :P

  54. moose (37)-

    STFU, ambulance-chaser.

  55. Stu (57)-

    Can you alert us before you and Gator tell Mayor Fraud to suck it?

  56. JJ says:

    Veggie Love
    Veggie Love
    PETA: The organization People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals has often used ads with naked celebrities to promote its anti-fur agenda and other animal rights causes.

    The ad: In its “Veggie Love” ad for the 2009 Super Bowl, PETA aimed to promote vegetarianism by featuring scantily clad women cavorting with vegetables.

    Why it was rejected: NBC rejected the ad because it “depicts a level of sexuality exceeding our standards,” according to a copy of the rejection letter provided by PETA. In the letter, NBC listed eight different acts within the 30-second spot that it found unsuitable for prime time, including “licking pumpkin” and “rubbing pelvic region with pumpkin.” NBC spokeswoman Liz Fischer told CNNMoney that “the ad was rejected because it didn’t conform with our standards.”

    Naturally, it can still be viewed on PETA’s web site.

  57. Schrodinger's Cat says:


    sounds similar to a memristor. technology marches on.

  58. chicagofinance says:

    Talk about no privacy sheesh….
    Colts Neck Township to vote
    on public works layoffs


    COLTS NECK — In a move the administration
    believes would save about $210,000 annually, the
    Colts Neck Township Committee is to vote
    Wednesday night on laying off four public works
    department laborers.

    The savings would be in not paying approximately
    $160,000 in salaries and about $50,000 in benefits
    to the four, said Township Administrator Robert

    The move is being considered “just for reasons of
    budget and economy,” Bowden said. The 2010
    municipal budget was about $11.6 million, while
    the 2011 budget has not been adopted yet.

    The matter is a resolution on the agenda of the
    Wednesday night Township Committee meeting,
    Bowden said. However, if the public works
    department is working the forecasted winter storm,
    the matter will be postponed to the Feb. 9 Township
    Committee meeting, Bowden said.

    If the four are laid off, the public works department
    would have a remaining 16 members – a director, a
    foreman, 13 laborers and a secretary, according to

    The layoffs would take effect 20 days after the vote,
    Bowden said.

    The affected workers are Ryan Fitzpatrick, hired in
    2003; Raymond Jiminez and Wade Peterson, both
    hired in 2004; and Charles Sickles, hired in 2006,
    Bowden said. He said the four have the least
    seniority of the department’s laborers.

    The public works department workers declined to
    accept a wage freeze, Bowden said.

  59. homeboken says:

    chifi – love union-think. Layoff the 4 with the least seniority. No regard for job performance.

    So the bottom 4 get canned. Meanwhile, I bet the director makes $160,000 on his own. I say can him, move everyone up a notch, and see if there is any difference in service.

  60. NJSerf says:

    The perfect crime!

    Two Somerset teens accused of mugging a restaurant delivery man Friday evening were quickly caught after police tracked their footprints and found them at home eating food stolen from the victim, authorities said.


    Officers also traced a phone number that had been used to place the order the delivery man had been carrying, authorities said, which led them to a residence on Taylor Drive.

    According to Soriano, the teens were found inside eating food that matched what was stolen, and the arrest was made after the victim identified them as the suspects.

    The teens were charged with first-degree robbery and taken to the Middlesex County Youth Detention Center.

  61. Anon E. Moose says:

    Debt [58];

    STFU, ambulance-chaser.

    I am convinced and humbled by your superior argument.

  62. grim says:


    Condolences on your purchase! Smart money getting the heck out of dodge (‘Klair)?

  63. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Stu/Gator congrats & good luck, been chomping at the bit since you told me some time ago about impending buy. Did not want to get into it on board or bother you with questions via email, enjoy!

  64. House Whine says:

    62- So these 4 workers may get laid off and this could have apparently been avoided were the co-workers willing to freeze their wages? God forbid they stand by their co-workers and save their jobs. I hope that if I were in such a situation I would forego a raise to help out 4 other people. But, I don’t want to be tested on that anytime soon.

  65. Barbara says:

    Stu and Gator, congrats! I will wait for deal making details.

  66. Dan says:

    Congrats Stu and Gator but did I read right in that you’re keeping the dacha in Montklair?

  67. Juice Box says:

    Who would of thunk…Republicans go doomer as Rep Paul Ryan mentions day of reckoning in the GOP Response.

  68. dink says:

    Congrats stu and gator. Eagerly awaiting the details.

  69. Shore Guy says:

    Ouch! Stu, $26,000 in property taxes? So, since those are paid in after-tax dollars, your first 50-odd thousand dollars earned go to pay property taxes. Even at $300,000 a year income, that is a freaking lot of money in property taxes.

  70. Libtard says:

    Alrighty then.

    As most of you already know, once we realized that our multi was never going to be our eventual ‘dream’ home, I promised the Gator we would buy something within 5 years. This promise was made back in late 2005. It was our 5-year plan and we first started looking literally in late 2009. The longer we could wait, the better off we would be due to more savings towards the downpayment/improvements as well as the supposed drop in real estate prices that we have all been waiting for pretty much, the last 4 years. Well when 2009 came around I showed Gator the numbers (I’m the finance guy in our family). We were essentially paying $1,100 rent to ourselves every month we stayed. Of course, this is not really true as we ended up paying mostly interest on our now 19 year mortgage. About 15 months ago, we decided to refinance down to a 20-year. It was a pretty good feeling at the refi closing when everyone commented on how everyone usually extends their mortgages. They hadn’t seen someone shorten one in a long while.

    Well we interviewed a few prospective buying agents for our journey and eventually settled with a local agent. Not only was she extremely useful to us, but she really earned her commission as we lead her on a two-year journey that involved way too many crapshack and overpriced home tours. She was really, really helpful and we consider ourselves extremely knowledgeable buyers. It was quite difficult for me to bite my tongue as so many annoying posters here recently have really put down the need for a realtor in a real estate transaction. Unless your a realtor, it really is money well spent. Fortunately, as the buyer, we didn’t have to pay for our agent. And thank the mighty one they don’t get paid by the hour, as we would have had almost no downpayment funds left. I would say that the only negative aspect of going the buying agent route was the disappointment shown in our agents body language and attitude when we looked at homes that were priced over 20% below our price range. This was really pronounced when we actually considered buying a ranch for around 300K and raising it. We didn’t go this route as it was simply too much of a pita.

    So like the rest of the patient folks here, we waited for the right house to show and it seemed like it would never happen. You all know I’m Captain Cheapo, but it was just too damn painful to watch couple after couple bid up crapshacks that we thought had potential. It was also quite disturbing to see a number of homes sell over the 24 or so months that went at decent prices, but weren’t ‘for us.’ Unfortunately, we wanted that open layout for entertaining that so many around here crave. It doesn’t help that property values have really been holding up well in Glen Ridge, especially in our price range.

    So our strategy was essentially this. We downloaded all of the data from every single home in Glen Ridge from the NJ Tax Records Search database. We then took the sales from Sue Adler’s website after asking her to include Glen Ridge and Montclair sales data. We then made a giant spreadsheet which allowed us to track trends and mainly to determine what people were paying per square foot of home as well as compared to the town assessment. We took into consideration that larger homes would naturally cost less per square foot than cheaper homes. Well the first home we put an offer on was a really nice place on Midland Ave. in the South End. We made this offer in November of 2009. The house was listed at 579K and we offered 525K and uncomfortably went up to 535K. This was a really large home but it didn’t have a main floor powder room, which is really a requirement since Gator’s mom has step issues. No first floor bathroom means less babysitting opportunities. We also needed a place that would accommodate Gator’s brother (the one who works for the feds) who will most likely become our responsibility over the next decade as Gator’s folks aren’t terribly healthy. Well the seller didn’t compromise and eventually found a renter at 3K per month and wasn’t responsible for snow removal or lawn mowing. No biggie as I still wanted to wait.

    The second house we put an offer on was on Harvard Street in the north end. It was a pretty tutor but wasn’t well maintained. The deck and garage were rotting and the downstairs was kind of small. It was a 1600 SF home and the seller wanted 479K. This was right at the end of the homebuyer credit madness so there were multiple bids. We went up to 490K and left it at that. Someone outbid us and then pulled out. We then said 490 but wanted to wait a day as another promising home was coming on the market the next day. Well the seller found another buyer just a hair above our 490 so we were a little disappointed, but still no biggie. Deep down I really wanted to see what kind of an impact the end of the tax credit would have on home prices in these parts.

    Well that other home came on the market and it was a memorable tour. The home looked nice enough from the outside, but once inside, it reeked of roasting broccoli and there were stale baguettes in milk crates every where we looked. This home was obviously a rental. The kitchen was awful, the first floor powder room was essentially a phone booth and the place was simply a mess. Needless to say, we didn’t even make it upstairs. When we left, we happened upon another buyer who just got the tour before us and they were just hanging around to see how long it would take us before we exited. It was quite amusing actually. This crapshack listed for 530K. The only thing good about it was the square footage which was 2250.

    Man were we surprised when a month or two later that crapshack went under contract. And soon after the buyer pulled out over inspection items, which is apparently way more common these days. The owner decided to fix these inspection items, redo the floors, paint the walls and get this…raise the price 10K to 540K we suppose to cover his costs. So we plodded on.

    About 6 months later the owner lowered the price to 489K and that’s when we decided to take another look at it. It was now in the realm of value, but not a screaming buy. So we waited and kept looking. It was then lowered again to 460K. Now that’s what I’m talking about. It was time to take another look. So we walked through and realized that the place was actually perfect for our needs, minus the kitchen and bathroom on the first floor. Outside of that, the 2nd floor bathroom had a bidet and was ugly gold-threaded marble from ceiling to floor. It’s in perfect condition, but pretty ugly. The bedrooms had some really nice size to them, the electric was upgraded, the furnace was only 15 years old (some of the ones we saw were 100) nice fireplace, nice open layout, 2 car garage, etc. It’s also in the north end which commands a premium. So we swooped in with a 430K offer. Keep in mind our price range took us up to the mid 500s. They accepted and we were off to the races. Everything was going great until the inspection. That inspector that Chifi recommended was the real deal. Not only was he cheaper than the locals,, but he was 3 times better than the highly touted a-hole we used on our multi. Needless to say, no stone was left unturned and he dug up about $5,000 in items that needed doing to make the house whole. His report was like 92 pages. The main problems were that two old trees needed to come down and there was some rot in 2 x 4s in the back of the garage. We presented this to the seller and they came back and said they’d pay half. We gave a last and final at $3,700 against the wishes of our buying agent and my lawyer, but they bit. The loan was no problem as Gator and I have credit scores in the 800s and enough retirement dollars to buy the home outright. So we go to do the final walkthrough yesterday at noon with a 1pm closing and two things are wrong. First, the snow was unshoveled for the last two storms. Of course before we went into the home, the owner was there in his Mercedes with a plastic shovel. Keep in mind this guy must be 80 years old. He actually planned to shovel the driveway himself. The snow was solidified by now of course and there was no way no how he could have possibly done it without croaking. He also tells us that he recently had a bypass. Fun stuff and only an hour before closing. Then once inside we notice that no water was running through the pipes as the furnace had kicked off due to a leaky radiator valve which steam was escaping from in the dining room. We caught this during inspection (actually I did, but this was before the inspector got a chance to look). So there was no way I was buying a home with frozen pipes. There was actually an icicle running from the spigot in the upstairs bathroom sink. The thermostat read 32 degrees. Thank the lord, they didn’t break. Well it took until about 10pm last night to defrost the pipes (plumber was brought in apparently) and the driveway and walks were plowed this morning. We walked through again at noon today and all was good this time and we were done in under an hour at the mortgage brokers offices.

    Now that it’s over it’s nice to know that we really got an amazing deal. Keep in mind, this was the case when we brought our multi. Look where we are now. So far, have taken a 75K loss on it easy. But then again, we have been paying $1100 rent to ourselves for six years so you can do the math. So it appears that this is the 4th cheapest price paid per square foot of home in Glen Ridge over the past two years. This is really not bad considering what some of those crapshacks looked like that sold. We now have enough money to put in a kitchen and a real bathroom and it will still be $75K less than the top of our price range. So it’s getting late and I need to work tomorrow, so fire away with your questions if you have any. By the way, I seriously considered working with Grim, but this deal came together right about the time I started feeling him out. Quite frankly, I didn’t think there would ever be any deals to be had. I can’t believe we ended up buying the broccoli and baguette house after looking at at least 60 homes over the past two years. Good night all and sorry I didn’t even reread this. Just don’t got the time. Donations to the ‘we be broke’ fund are now being accepted.

  71. Punch My Ticket says:

    A memorable story.

    I can’t believe we ended up buying the broccoli and baguette house …

    The house we’re in now, we spent about 15 seconds in the first time we saw it. Occupied by a widower with failing eyesight and his teenage grandson, it was both untidy and filthy. We looked at about 40 other houses after. Seven months later, asking price cut 10%, and having never set foot inside again, we took another 15% off and lowballed. He took it.

    Good for you and Gator for hanging in. I really liked the spreadsheet angle. Did that myself. Ran regressions. Drove my wife crazy. It’s all good now.

    Best of luck.

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