September pending home sales up YOY, but slip on the month

From Inman:

Pending home sales index rises from one year ago

A monthly index that tracks pending sales of U.S. resale homes rose in September compared to a year ago, while falling on a month-to-month basis, the National Association of Realtors reported today.

NAR’s Pending Home Sales Index, which measures real estate sales contracts signed but not yet closed, increased 6.4 percent year over year, to 84.5, in September. On a monthly basis, the index declined 4.6 percent. The index typically represents about 20 percent of all existing-home transactions. An index score of 100 is equal to the average level of sales contract activity in 2001, which was the first year examined by the trade group.

The index rose on an annual basis in all four U.S. regions. The Midwest saw the greatest increase, up 12.3 percent to 71.5. The region also saw the greatest month-to-month index decline, down 6.2 percent.

The Northeast saw a 4 percent index increase compared to a year ago, to 60.6, and a monthly decline of 4.7 percent.

From Bloomberg:

Pending Home Sales Decreases by 4.6%

The number of contracts to purchase previously owned U.S. homes unexpectedly fell in September as lower prices and borrowing costs failed to support demand.

The 4.6 percent decrease in the index of pending home sales, the biggest since April, followed a 1.2 percent drop the previous month, the National Association of Realtors said today in Washington. Economists forecast a 0.4 percent gain, according to the median of 38 estimates in a Bloomberg News survey.

Consumer sentiment at depressed levels, unemployment above 9 percent and limited access to credit are preventing Americans from taking advantage of near record-low mortgage rates and discounted pricing on homes. The prospect of more foreclosures adding to supply and further weighing on prices means any recovery in housing may take years.

“Sales continue to bump along the bottom,” Anika Khan, an economist at Wells Fargo Securities LLC in Charlotte, North Carolina, said before the report. “A meaningful recovery in sales will likely not occur until the mountain of foreclosures and pending foreclosures clears.”

Estimates for pending home sales ranged from a drop of 1.5 percent to an increase of 2.8 percent, according to the Bloomberg survey. Pending sales rose 7.9 percent from September 2010.

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120 Responses to September pending home sales up YOY, but slip on the month

  1. Mike says:

    Good Morning New Jersey And Happy Friday Yabba Dabba Doo

  2. grim says:

    6-10 inches in Jersey this weekend? Yikes

  3. grim says:

    From NY1:

    Brooklyn Real Estate Market Booming According To Recent Report

    The Brooklyn real estate market is booming according to the numbers released in a new report by Prudential Douglas Elliman.

    “It fared very well. Actually, it fared the best it has since Lehman Brothers went down. A lot of markets did well this quarter, so it wasn’t just Brooklyn, but Brooklyn did exceptionally well,” says Dottie Herman, president and CEO of Prudential Douglas Elliman.

    The report shows that since last year, sales are up borough-wide by a whopping 18 percent and prices are up about five percent from this time last year. Now, the average price for a home in Brooklyn is just over $600,000.

    Jonathan Miller of Appraisal Firm Miller Samuel generated the report. He says the biggest jump in the Brooklyn market comes from new development.

    “I think the biggest thing is really new construction sales. It’s really getting traction over the last two or three quarters. This quarter was no exception. We are seeing more sales and larger units moving,” says Miller.

    The report also finds activity is up in one to three-family homes, which are a large part of the borough’s housing stock.

    It wasn’t just the hot neighborhoods in north and northwest Brooklyn that contributed to the surge, either. Miller says eastern areas like East New York, Bed Stuy and Cyprus Hills, which have often lagged, also saw an uptick in prices and sales activity.

    “I think one of the more immediate reasons for the improvement is the hot rental market in Manhattan. Rising rents are driving people with record low mortgage rates to make that rent versus buy decision and are looking at their options in Brooklyn, and part of that is also that we’ve had a real surge in the last few quarters of foreign buyers and that’s really helped the condo market,” says Miller.

  4. grim says:

    Just because it’s Friday, from the Chicago Tribune:

    Another price cut for ‘Home Alone’ mansion

    The Winnetka mansion where the 1990 movie “Home Alone” was filmed has undergone a second price cut, to $1.95 million.

    It’s the latest price chop for the three-story brick mansion, whose owners, John and Cynthia Abendshien, allowed filmmakers to use the house in the popular movie and its first sequel. The Abendshiens listed it in May for $2.4 million, and reduced their asking price to $2.18 million in June.

    Built in 1921, the “Home Alone” mansion has four en-suite bedrooms, hand-painted dining room walls, a Joliet-designed kitchen and four sun porches.

    “It’s a classic Georgian that is incredibly well-balanced,” said listing agent Marissa Hopkins of Coldwell Banker. “It’s a convenient location, on a half-acre within a couple of blocks of town and the train.”

    Hopkins was philosophical about the most recent price reduction.

    “Like everybody, we’re trying to find the market,” Hopkins said.

  5. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    (2) grim,

    Is JJ crossing the Hudson?

  6. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Nom 5 LOL.

  7. Confused in NJ says:

    6″-10″ snow forecast, time to get the snow blower down again. Better cut the lawn again today before it gets covered.

  8. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Unexpected, Shore, Kettle……………….
    A study by European and U.S scientists finds the Fukushima disaster may have released more than twice the amount of radiation than the Japanese government originally estimated. In a bit of a blow to PM Noda’s plans for a quick nuclear restart, the report also cites structural damage to reactors from the earthquake precipitated radioactive release before the tsunami struck – contradicting once again the government’s official assessment.

  9. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Confused, cut lawn before it’s covered?

  10. freedy says:

    Did not take long for Jon to run this one into the ground. Perhaps he could bring over Karla to give him a hand .

  11. Corzine has a look that will help him fit right in at the soup kitchen.

  12. funnelcloud says:

    Leaves aren’t even cleaned up, Have a brand new tractor being delivered today,
    Guess I’ll just have to mow the snow. Damn TGIF

  13. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Couldn’t happen to a nicer guy.

  14. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Funnel 12 mine either, it will melt. Where I am in Vernon we most likely receive amounts on the high end of the forecast so may take awhile.

  15. Acres says:

    Hi Grim,

    Your post September pending home sales up YOY, but slip on the month is quite interesting and informative. So Commercial Real Estate property woners should be careful and proactive to take timely decission as per the economic up and down stage to maximize or minimize their profit level as per the statistics.

    Great Post !!!

  16. funnelcloud says:


    Weather man says your going to take a pounding, There callin for 5 to 8 in the flats more in the mountains, you’ll be skiing tomorrow!

  17. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Funnel & I am not in the flats. You know the area “flats” is a term used for the Valley?

  18. Shore Guy says:

    “contradicting once again the government’s official assessment.”

    What were the odds of that happening?

  19. funnelcloud says:


    You misunderstood my last post,,, 5 to 8 in the flats meaning area’s around the mountains, Lower Sussex or Warren or Morris where I live, I did assume that if you lived in Vernon you lived on the mountains, forcast is 8 to10 for you hence the “take a pounding” and enjoy the skiing comment. No malicious intent.

  20. JJ says:

    MF just hit a nice yield of 26%. I am all in when it hits 90%!

    MF 6.25 08/08/2016 SR UNSECURED 6.250000 DTD 20110808 MTY 20160808
    Price $47.750, Yield 26%!!! CUSIP 55277JAC2

  21. Shore Guy says:

    Just got an e-mail from a RE agent about a place in Ocean Grove. Bottom line, just like the ugly Unicorn-Land house from the other day: With a 30-year mortgage, at 4%, and 20% down, whoever the sucker, um, lucky buyer is their mortgage payment will not be all that different than the tax bill. I suspect it will not take long before the lines cross and the taxes are the larger expense.

  22. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Funnel No offense you misunderstood me “the flats” is an area of Vernon that gets less snow(in the valley). Thought you might have lived here at one time.

  23. chicagofinance says:

    bunghole….see this?

    chicagofinance says:
    October 27, 2011 at 6:22 pm
    It is not a bond cornholio….

    JJ says:
    October 27, 2011 at 2:27 pm
    ChiFi, before I get burnt. I have been buying Bank of America bonds last two weeks. Yields have dropped like a brick since Monday. However this one Bank of America bonds is still above 9%. What is the catch?


    NB CAP TR IV CAP SECS 8.25000% 04/15/2027
    CUSIP 62874HAA3
    NB CAP TR IV CAP SECS 8.25000% 04/15/2027
    Price (Ask) 93.500
    Yield to Worst (Ask) 9.038%

  24. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    (10) freedy,

    The ultimate economic coup for Obama would be if he could convince the Chinese to hire Corzine to run their economy, thus assuring US hegemony.

  25. funnelcloud says:

    Just skied there,,, not a local,
    Nice, Big high school on the hill,,,, Daughter competed there in cheerleading tournaments a few years back.

  26. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Sounds like it will be a fun Friday, but I’m gonna be awol. A couple of my better clients have called and they deserve my undivided attention. See you all tomorrow maybe.

  27. gary says:

    I suspect it will not take long before the lines cross and the taxes are the larger expense.

    This has been truth for a while now. The fat, bloated f*cks just keep pushing the big red button. As long as the pellet keeps plopping in front of them, they’ll keep pushing. I’ll say it again: property taxes will continue to rise unabated and he11 will freeze before wages substantially increase. That leaves us with one alternative: price. And the prices will steadily decrease until people can afford to pay. We still have at least another 15% drop in the median price in our area before we can start using the “bottom” word.

  28. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    (25) funnel,

    What team was daughter on? Mine cheered for Central Jersey All Stars.

  29. JJ says:

    It is a quasi bond. higher up on food chain that pref stock. Fed rarely makes this level of debt holder pay. I call debentures, notes, etc all bonds. As long as it is trading in increments of 1K and has a stated coupon and maturity. Sadly most corporate bonds are not bonds at all. I threw a limit order bid in at 93 this morning and I guess insulted the desk as they pulled it and relisted it at 96.

    BTW two weeks ago I got some COUNTRYWIDE CAP III SB CAP-B 8.05000% 06/15/2027 CUSIP 22237AAB2 at a price of 85. yes I know they are quasi bonds. But I believe even if BAC BK’s CW they are still on the hook for bank debt. A few others also believe this fairytale. Meanwhile at 10.5% YTM I am willing to test my theory.

    there are no more BAC, NB, Fleet, CW, or any other legacy Bank of America bond yielding over 9% as of right now. Two weeks ago they hit 10% and to me that is a magic number on a bank that is TBTF with huge assets. I thought you were down with me on this?

    chicagofinance says:
    October 28, 2011 at 8:55 am
    bunghole….see this?

    chicagofinance says:
    October 27, 2011 at 6:22 pm
    It is not a bond cornholio….

    JJ says:
    October 27, 2011 at 2:27 pm
    ChiFi, before I get burnt. I have been buying Bank of America bonds last two weeks. Yields have dropped like a brick since Monday. However this one Bank of America bonds is still above 9%. What is the catch?


    NB CAP TR IV CAP SECS 8.25000% 04/15/2027
    CUSIP 62874HAA3
    NB CAP TR IV CAP SECS 8.25000% 04/15/2027
    Price (Ask) 93.500
    Yield to Worst (Ask) 9.038%

  30. Shore Guy says:

    You too can own a piece of Saddam Hussein’s buttock:

  31. Shore Guy says:

    I have said it for years; beware of the Horn of Africa:

  32. 3b says:

    #27 gary: Exactly correct. It is what I have been trying to tell Unicornians for years, and urged people to vote no on massive spending referendums. 12k year for a 60 year old 3 bed cape is insane even if it includes unicorns crapping on your front lawn.

  33. Shore Guy says:

    Have we learned NOTHING?

    WASHINGTON (AP) – Americans spent in September at three times the pace of the previous month, even though incomes barely budged.

  34. Shore Guy says:

    “unicorns crapping on your front lawn.”

    Unicorns are not that uncouth — they skittle.

  35. 3b says:

    33/34 My apologies you are right skittles, and yes unbelieveable, and some of these very same spenders are crying about their underwater mtgs. Maybe they are feeling better with Obama’s new mtg relief plan.

  36. 3b says:

    #27 gary:I would also like to know what happens when mtg rates at some point go back to 7% or 8%?

  37. 3b (36)-

    Interest rates of 7-8% on mortgages won’t matter, because the worldwide derivatives market will have melted down, and those of us who survive the holocaust that it spawns will be roaming the planet in packs.

    75% of all derivatives contracts are one-way interest rate bets. And, they are not bets that they’ll go up.

  38. JJ says:

    low interest rates is what is screwing up the MBS market now, not high interest rats. people paid good money for MBS with 5,6 and 7 coupons, above par. Now with 4% mortgages they are being called left and right and you have to replace that income stream at a much less coupon.

    I would rather roll my 6% MBS interest payments into 8% MBS and eat a little principal loss on my 6% MBS then get called at par at 6% to reinvest at 4%.

    Big players like pensions, anuities, insurers, 401K bond funds are mainly buy and hold investors. Many only buy new issues between 10-30 years maturity. They keep rolling bonds. Most have like 5% maturing each year. with rates low going into year four, 20% of their portfolio has rolled into lower rates. They won’t be able to pay anuities or pension promises in a world where they assumed they could get 8% forwever. Those 30 year 1981 treasuries, corporates adn munis maturing this year will be a huge hit to income stream.

  39. Shore Guy says:

    In the midst of all this economic turmoil, here is something to put your mind at ease:

    The U.S. military is facing a “significant criminal threat” from gangs, including prison and biker gangs, whose members have found their way into the ranks, according to an FBI-led investigation.

    Some gang members get into the military to escape the streets, but then end up reconnecting once in, while others target the services specifically for the combat and weapons training, the National Gang Intelligence Center says in a just-released 2011 National Gang Threat Assessment/Emerging Trends.

  40. Shore Guy says:

    From the report:

    The report also specifically relates the 2010 cases of three former Marines arrested in Los Angeles for selling illegal assault weapons the Florencia 13 gang, and a U.S. Navy SEAL charged in Colorado with smuggling military-issued machine guns and other weapons from Iraq and Afghanistan into the U.S.

    “Gang members armed with high-powered weapons and knowledge and expertise acquired from employment in law enforcement, corrections or the military may pose an increasing nationwide threat, as they employ these tactics and weapons against law enforcem4nt officials, rival gang members and civilians,” the NGIC report says.

  41. grim says:

    34 – I think I may have just wet my pants laughing

  42. 3b says:

    #37 There: If we go from 4% mtgs to 7/8% in the next 3 to 5 years, that will devestate any minor recovery that we ,may be having now. One would reasonably think that with 4% mtgs, the market would be booming, but it is not (for all the different reasons etc). That is my biggest fear, if I commit now to buy and only put down the minimum with and rates rise I lose the down payment, which would be OK, but I could lose even more, and than I am stuck with an asset under water that could be under water for years, and held hostage to ever increasing property taxes, and in many cases many of the same urban ills in the city. Even my cousin who moved out by you (Annandale) 7 years ago, says it has changed dramatically and they too are seeing signs of urban decay.

    I just do not undestand how any one can comfortably make a decesion to buy today, with all the uncertainity. I could be very well one of those people that you say will never buy ( and I used to own), but at some point I will have to, or run the rest of moving to a new rental every few years.

  43. danxp says:


    is $15/sf/yr a good lease rate for 10k sf of retail space in a “decent” location?

    with housing being artificially propped up by the gubmint, savers are losers big time… thinking of taking my down payment elsewhere… can anyone recommend a good franchise to own for abt 100k+ capital?

  44. Shore Guy says:

    8% mortgages will be a Godsend to many towns as it will allow homebuyers’ mortgage payments to exceed tax payments. With monthly taxes equaling monthly mortgage payments, it is making some towns look bad.

  45. 3b says:

    #44 True. But what is it going to do to all the buyers that purchased with 4% mtgs??

  46. Shore Guy says:

    Well, DUH! They refinance. That way they too can live in a town where taxes are lower than mortgage costs.

  47. joyce says:

    I understand what you’re saying, but the FED can’t keep rates at 0% forever without hyperinflation and/or zero growth.

    When should they raise rates? sooner the better in my opinion, flush out all the zombie banks/home-debtors

  48. grim says:

    Nothing like a little inflation to goose incomes and home prices….

  49. Confused in NJ says:

    9.Mikeinwaiting says:
    October 28, 2011 at 7:32 am
    Confused, cut lawn before it’s covered?

    Cut it short before vit’s covered with 10″ of snow.

  50. The Original NJ Expat says:

    I could be very well one of those people that you say will never buy ( and I used to own), but at some point I will have to, or run the rest of moving to a new rental every few years.

    This was us 9.5 years ago in 2002, with a newborn and cat in tow. We just wanted to move somewhere that approximated or beat our renting costs. We just wanted to live someplace nice where we didn’t have to move if we wanted to. I fully expected that maybe 2002 would be the top of the market and we would lose our equity and perhaps our mobility as a consequence. Our solution was to put 40% down on a place less than half the value of what we told we can “afford” and overpay our mortgage so that we would always have the option of making a quick sale without bringing a briefcase full of cash to the closing table. It’s worked fine for us so far.

  51. joyce says:

    If only the inflation lifted everyone’s income and not just those with first access to the new money

  52. JJ says:

    In 1999 and 2000 mortgage rates shot up while housing was rising. High mortgage rates can be a good thing as it encourages a larger down payment and opens up prospect of refinancing to a lower rate.

    Buy a house at 4% means you can never refinance. No shot of lowering that monthly nut.

  53. 3b says:

    #48 grim: Unless the employment situation imprves dramatically, I do not see incomes being goosed.

  54. 3b says:

    #53 JJ: I had a 7.25 mtg in 97, abd that was considered a very attractive rate.

  55. gary says:

    Erigo rates quod vexo sicco silenti etc. Lacrima es effundo tantum pro thyne ego sic festinatio non quod fio per is.

  56. JJ says:

    I had 8% on first mortgage. But rate is not that important it is price of home. That one bedroom coop with 25% down only cost me $170 a month for mortgage. Same unit today 20 years later is 180K with 25% down you are paying $470 a month.

    Low interest rates are a trap. Remember when GM did zero % down and zero %financing on Escalades and people rushed out to buy $55,000 SUVs and drove away from dealer just by signing a form.

    Well lets see. day one zero % down guy owes 55k, day one 7% guy who made a downpayment owes like 45K and has a heavy incentive to prepay loan. Low interest causes people to take on too much debt.

    3b says:
    October 28, 2011 at 11:46 am
    #53 JJ: I had a 7.25 mtg in 97, abd that was considered a very attractive rate.

  57. JJ says:

    Problem is employee cost is rising. Employees are paying more for medical, disability insurance, unemployment insurance and for retirement benefits. Employer on a total benefit basis are paying employees more. However, there may be a very small raise.

    3b says:
    October 28, 2011 at 11:44 am
    #48 grim: Unless the employment situation imprves dramatically, I do not see incomes being goosed.

  58. danxp says:



  59. funnelcloud says:

    Comrade #28
    Been away for a while,,,
    Daughter cheered for Lenape Valley JR. Competition squad

  60. funnelcloud says:

    Time flies, as my daughter is now in college and she cheered in 6th and 7th (guess it was a few more than a few). Actual point was,,, I just remember Vernon being a nice school.

  61. Happy Renter says:

    “Nothing like a little inflation to goose incomes”

    Good luck with that. Incomes will continue to shrink/disappear thanks to a tsunami of BRICs we lack the guts and ambition (and in the not-too-distant-future, the means) to stop.

    But glad to wake up this morning and learn that all the problems with the Euro have been resolved thanks to a few magical words uttered by some banksters — party on!

  62. I would gladly move from rental to rental every few years, rather than continue to stay in my current underwater debt trap, whose taxes I expect to top 10K any day now.

    Right now, looks like I leave this house feet first. Then again, default is always an option.

  63. joyce (47)-

    FedCo can’t raise interest rates, even though it’ the right thing to do. It would signal an immediate “game over” to all the financial shenanigans.

  64. The Original NJ Expat says:

    48 – grim Nothing like a little inflation to goose incomes and home prices….

    IMO, Bernanke would *love* to see about 5 or 6 years of 10% inflation, under-reported of course. Has to include real wage inflation or there will be riots, obviously. If everything (pensions, mortgages) can just be made good in nominal terms, then his job is done. Back around 1969 there were people happily retiring with $6-$7K annual pensions and paid off houses. They thought they would be set for life. Well they got their pension checks alright, it was the food and gas prices of the 70’s that did them in. I have an uncle who retired after 40 years as a teacher in the late 80’s with a $24K annual pension. He “lives” in Florida, if you can call it that. OTOH, a HS math teacher of mine retired a couple years ago after 40 years. His pension is right around an even $100K annual.

  65. gryffindor says:

    I haven’t posted on this board in a few years. I am currently married for 1.5 years and seriously overpaying for a Manhattan rental that is only going to go up when the renewal letter comes around next year. I have told my NYC-loving husband living in NYC and commuting to NJ for work is a very poor financial move and that we are moving to NJ when the lease ends. We are both primarily based in NJ – he’s exit 171 and I’m exit 153B – so it only makes sense for us to live there and commute to NYC ten to twelve days a month.

    We are going out for a drive along the “Gold Coast” tomorrow to start assessing our options. As much as I have been pro-rental the past decade of my life, I now want to buy a place and destroy my moving boxes for good. As long as what we buy is cheaper than what I pay in rent + parking + tolls in NYC, it will work for us. I would rather look a bit more inland at the towns along Route 3, but my husband is hung up on having a city view so as a compromise, looks like we will likely end up somewhere on the water.

    No kids yet so school districts not a concern. Suggestions on where to look? For starters, I’m ruling out Jersey City to start as it looks like on the map that it puts us too far away from the Parkway.

  66. The Original NJ Expat says:

    Mortgage debt on this day in:
    2000 $6.7 Trillion and rising
    2004 $10.4 Trillion and rising
    2008 $14.6 Trillion and rising
    2011 $13.5 Trillion and *FALLING*

    So we are back to 2002 *pricing* but we still have ~2007 Mortgage debt levels. Me thinks that prices continue to go down until mortgage debt starts going up again.

  67. JJ says:

    Guy up the block from me I don’t even think he had feet by the time they discovered him. Hermit PITA guy who died sometime in late winter and was not till stench of body reached street did people investigate. Icky. My next door neighbor growing up who was like 94 with no kids or relatives whose only neighbor she talked to died in her sleep. She was hard of hearing so did not always answer door or phone. My Mom ended up calling cops after a few days and she was dead in her nighty. Those SOB paramedics wheeled her out to her front lawn in her nightie on a cold cold January day and left her undcovered. My Mom went out and demanded they load her in ambulence or put her back in house. They claimed they were not allowed to take her to hospital as she was clearly dad, they were waiting for morgue to come. Morgue guy showed up 45 minutes later. A week old dead 94 year old women on your front lawn for 45 minutes is not a pretty sight. At least my Mom got them to put a blanket over them. BTW dying at home is a terrible way to go for the family. My Dad did it and after Doctor did Death Certificate we were stuck with a body. Can call ambulence he is dead, can’t call morgue, he already has dead certificate. Only person you can call is a funeral home which takes awhile and they send Hearse. That god we got the body out by dinner time as he was in the dining room.

    There went meat says:
    October 28, 2011 at 1:11 pm
    I would gladly move from rental to rental every few years, rather than continue to stay in my current underwater debt trap, whose taxes I expect to top 10K any day now.

    Right now, looks like I leave this house feet first. Then again, default is always an option.

  68. joyce says:


    you’re right

    total worldwide currency collapse with ensuing world war and it will end with world government/currency? in which we’ll start all over with the debt/leverage for 4 more generations

  69. The Original NJ Expat says:

    #65 gryffindor – I have told my NYC-loving husband living in NYC and commuting to NJ for work is a very poor financial move and that we are moving to NJ when the lease ends.

    Maybe you can tell your husband that if you both get NYC jobs on a good career track it would be a very good financial move? Maybe then when you have kids only one of you needs to work and you’ll have much more flexibility with future home location.

  70. 3b says:

    #57 JJ: more and more of those costs are bing shifted to the employee, and many of these plans are bare bones minimum. As far as pensionsmost private sector pensions have been eliminated eyars ago. The employee cannot spend those monthly paid benefits, and as such it cannot be treated as day to day income.

  71. JC says:

    #65: Anything on the so-called “gold coast” is going to be far away from the Parkway and Route 3 is no fun to drive on in the morning. Don’t let anyone fool you that “it’s in the opposite direction.” I drive either 80 west or 46 west every morning and the traffic is far worse west. So I’m not sure that a view of Manhattan is worth a commute that’s little better, if any, than what you have now.

    If you insist on “Gold Coast”, Weehawken has some lovely older houses but parking is an issue. Edgewater has lots of newer condos but they are going to be expensive. That’s my $0.02….I’m sure there are others here who can give you better advice.

  72. palms says:

    #39/40 Umm, I would take that FBI report with a whole shaker of salt:

    The FBI even cautions that the Juggalos are among 53 gangs “whose members have served in or are affiliated with the U.S. military.”

  73. 3b says:

    #56 JJLow interest causes people to take on too much debt.

  74. hughesrep says:

    I’m waiting for the John and the Juggalos story.

  75. 3b says:

    #71 psalms I know a retired NYPD Cop who was offered a 200K position in Afghanistan for a 9 month stint, to deal with gang problems in the military. I was shocked but it is true. Keeping it real form the streets of L.A to deserts of Iraq, and the craggy mountains of Afghanistan.

  76. 30 year realtor says:

    Just entering a new listing. House sold for $410,000 2/06. List price today $69,900.
    76 Rome St, Newark, NJ. I think prices in the Ironbound are off a bit from peak?

  77. Juice Box says:

    30 year, it’s a beauty and best yet no need to hang up the Christmas lights either
    this season. How this sold for over 200k is a mystery? 06/12/2002 Sold $205,000 and then for 03/17/2006 Sold $410,000!,+Newark,+NJ&hl=en&ll=40.723494,-74.1466&spn=0.003984,0.006899&sll=40.723666,-74.146794&layer=c&cbp=13,309.67,,0,10.39&cbll=40.723468,-74.146644&hnear=76+Rome+St,+Newark,+New+Jersey+07105&t=h&z=17&vpsrc=0&iwloc=A&panoid=Fc6k313ygQW6Dnpu55VreA

  78. The Original NJ Expat says:

    #77 – 3oyear – that’s astounding! My college girlfriend lived just a couple blocks away on Darcy St, well her family did. That used to be a great neighborhood. Until I started dating her I never knew you could get into NYC for 35 cents on the path train. I thought it was the greatest thing ever in 1981.

  79. 3b says:

    #77 Juice: I have seen lsitings in Newark for 25k to 50K; might have even saw a couple for under 20k!!!

  80. The Original NJ Expat says:

    #80 Ironbound isn’t really Newark. It used to be, and maybe still is, a safe middle class neighborhood where you could walk around safely at night. It was a pleasant mix of working class Portugese, Polish, and Irish. My girlfriend’s Mom used to get her Nova stolen every now and then, but it was always local kids joy-riding and she always got it back.

  81. gryffindor says:

    #68 Original NJ Expat – We are already in our career tracks; mine would do better in NJ (private practice), he could be in NJ or NYC depending on his employer (financial reporting). Neither of us is looking to stop working when we have kids, but hopefully I will be in a place where I can dump all the NYC jobs and just work at the NJ private practice part-time. His firm is very family friendly as well.

    #70 JC – We do the reverse commute from Manhattan already 3 – 4 days/wk. Being on the NJ side would I think save me a lot of time. This morning it took me 12 minutes just to get from 49th St. in Times Square to the entrance of the Lincoln Tunnel and this was at 10:30 am. Radio was saying GW was backed up upstairs and downstairs to the NJ side due to an accident in Fort Lee although usually the GW is an easy sail out of NYC in the mornings. On the way back to NYC in the evenings, GW is usually a better bet as the Lincoln tunnel gets backed up starting at 4.

    Our monthly expenses for rent + parking + tolls is about $4K a month (3500 + 300 + 200) and we have the extra expense of NYC resident taxes at the end of the year. We looked to buy in NYC – you can’t buy in the nicer condo buildings for $3500 a month unless it is Harlem. Maybe a co-op, but we don’t have hoards of money saved up and I especially don’t care to beg to a co-op board to let me live and later sell in their building. Plus the “will there be bridge and tunnel traffic” is making me nuts. I have to be able to do financially better than this in NJ as a renter and hopefully even be able to own.

  82. JCer says:

    gryffindor, I’d reconsider jersey city, it arguably has the most highway access on the gold coast, forget Edgewater(everyone drives there at rush hour, it is traffic hell). You’s be best advised to live out in the burbs unless you work on the gold coast or in NYC it is a traffic nightmare. Your real options are Hoboken, Weehawken, or Jersey City because you don’t want to travel far on river road at rush hour so you’d need to be close to 495, 139, or the Eastern Spur. Also costs are still astronomical there between taxes, maintenance fees, mortgage, parking costs(don’t take that for granted). Commuting west is better but there is still some traffic in the morning and definitely traffic at night going home(I actually just did the drive from Jersey City to Prestige on rt 17 in paramus at rush hour 2 days ago).

    FYI you haven’t begun to feel pain yet, try 550k for an ok 2bd on the gold coast(750k for a nice one), with 10k per yr in property taxes, at least 6k per year maintenance, and parking at $200 per car per month or a parking spot to buy for 40k(plus maintenance!). Your rent is probably very bad but I don’t know if you’ll save by buying on the mold coast. I live here and like it a lot but for a city dweller Hoboken, Jersey City, or maybe Weehawken are your best bets I wouldn’t live elsewhere it is like suburbia closer to the city(i.e long commute, subdivisions, expensive suburbia with a view). JC or Hoboken have the PATH, so good 24hr train access to the city and also have plenty of bars and restaurants, so your lifestyle won’t change as much. Also don’t even think of children in public school in this area, the kids in those schools look like they’d stab you, hoboken public schools look like juvy, Jersey City schools look like prison.

  83. 30 year realtor says:

    #79 3b – Are you attempting to imply that I sell sh*tty houses? If you are trying to imply that you are correct. I am proudly the garbage man of the real estate biz!

  84. JJ says:

    Cheapest place for someone who works in NJ and likes NYC might be the Bronx. People laugh but places like Pelham, Bronxville or Scarsdale are pretty nice and if hubby works in Midtown and can take 15 minute 4 train express to work and wife takes GWB to NJ it is a really quick commute.

    NYC to NJ commute is so messed up that when I once dated a geographically undesirable girl from NJ we used to go after work near my apt on Bell Blvd in Queens, I used to drop her off in NJ from bayside on a roundtrip at 11pm in under one hour. Meanwhile guys I work with in rush hour get stuck in the tunnel for one hour.

  85. The Original NJ Expat says:

    #82 gryffindor : We used to live in Nutley, NJ which is pretty close to your work, I imagine, with many ways to get on the Parkway in either direction. Getting into NYC rush hour is best and easily done by bus from there. We lived a stone’s throw from Hoffman-Laroche’s main entrance and I used to marvel at how quickly I would get into NY and to my office at 42nd & 2nd. Faster than you could ever get in by car, due to the special bus lanes that I’m sure you always see on the other side of Route 3 from the way you’re going. I almost took a job in Weehawken when we lived in Nutley until I realized if I left my NYC job it would take me forever to get to Weehawken and back by car. In that respect the other side of the Lincoln tunnel is closer time-wise than staying in NJ.

  86. The Original NJ Expat says:

    Oh, and unless things have changed and you need to get across town from Port Authority like I did, always take the 7 train. The shuttle is for tourists and suckers, but you probably know that already. I used to walk out my door, walk about 40 yards, get the bus, go down to the 7 train at PA and be in my office at 42nd & 2nd in about 45 minutes most days. The only street I crossed and the only time I was outside was crossing 42nd street to my office.

  87. JCer says:

    NJ Expat, I actually used to make that commute from northern bergen to weehawken. It’s not that bad actually, the 495 traffic is ugly but once you get the timing down you can make it from Nutley in like 25 minutes. Coming from Ramsey, would take like 40 minutes on a really good day, 50m on average and at it’s worst 1hr-1hr 15m. Believe it or not the best commute in the suburbs to Weehawken is Hackensack, right on 80 to the turnpike to the lincoln tunnel approach, usually no traffic until the approach. Once you learn how to use the back roads you can basically give your commute some predictability. Odd times help as well, hitting 495 after 9am or before 8am.

  88. Dan in debt..... says:

    If you don’t plan on having kids or plan on sending them to private schoold if/when you have, Clifton has nice neighborhoods South of Route 3 on Upper Montclair side with easy access to 46 3 and Parkway with good bus routes.

  89. JCer says:

    JJ NYC really means Manhattan, the bronx need not apply. Most parts look like Newark or worse.

  90. The Original NJ Expat says:

    #89 Dan – Again, unless there have been changes in the decades I’ve been gone, just North of Route 3 used to be good too, along Allwood, Mount Prospect Ave, etc. My Uncle used to own a house overlooking the park below on Mount Prospect, also had nice NYC skyline views. I used to tutor a girl who lived in Passaic Park, that used to be real nice too. Of course private school is an absolute must if you live there.

  91. JJ says:

    Riverdale is in the bronx. Many parts of Bronx are an amazing secret. Top schools, Golf courses and easy access to many places. Going upstate sking or to a footgame or out in the city is easy and quick via metro north, subway, bus, express bus or car and bridges and roads unlike NJ have no tolls. Via car you could be at your favorite NYC bar in like ten minutes with no toll. My friend used to live up there who worked in Montvale while hubbie worked in midtown.,_Bronx

    JCer says:
    October 28, 2011 at 4:21 pm
    JJ NYC really means Manhattan, the bronx need not apply. Most parts look like Newark or worse

  92. JJ says:

    I noticed Fort Washington Park in Washington Heights is at base of GWB. I think I would call up those Occupy Folks and take over park. You could live there rent free for years. Great commute to NJ and NYC.

  93. Happy Renter says:

    This goes down in my book as the single-best example of a “lead photo” selection for a MLS listing:

    Just wow.

  94. POS Cape says:


    Makes me wanna go.

  95. JCer says:

    JJ, I know about the nice areas in the Bronx, my point is still not NYC(Manhattan). It is different, not bad but different, I’d put most of Queens and a lot of Brooklyn in that category as well. Most people have a very specific though about living in NYC short of Manhattan, BK Heights(and surroundings), maybe parts of LIC or Astoria, and maybe Hoboken and Jersey City in a limited sense, true city living as indicated by a pedestrian existence, conveniences nearby, and a certain aesthetic which is missing from the place your talking about. Is it convenient, are their nice coops, and does it have a decent commute, yes. But so does Westchester or Nassau or even Montclair NJ, that doesn’t make it city living. Unless I can fall out of my apartment and see in plain sight a food market, a restaurant, a bar and a liquor store you are really not living in a city.

  96. gryffindor says:

    Thanks everyone for the comments! I really do appreciate it.

    I am familiar with Nutley and Clifton. My office is in Little Falls so the goal is to make the commute there as short as possible ie under 30 minutes. I would move there now but the husband is just barely mentally ready to leave NYC and is spoiled by the full service building, city views and grilling on the balcony of our post-wedding apartment. The full service building we could do without but we do want some outdoor space for the grill. He really wants the view so hence our trek to the Gold Coast tomorrow.

    We don’t really “take advantage” of the city that much anymore like we did when we were single to warrant living there 24/7 (too broke honestly – the $300 dinners we used to have while dating goes to the parking garage now). He gives me a list of things to pick up at Shop-Rite because shopping at Food Emporium costs double.

    I will report later after tomorrow’s drive on the Gold Coast.

  97. chicagofinance says:

    North end of Hoboken and leave it at that… can jump on Route 3 and your husband can use NJTP/80/GSP…the only killer is getting up onto the 495 viaduct at rush hour… will learn the back roads to finesse rush hour/Friday eve Lincoln Tunnel traffic. The most important thing is to be able to park your car Friday and not touch it until you go to work on Monday.

    There are now several school option in Hoboken that make the choices palatable. There are tons of kids in under 10 years old, so your progeny will not be the vanguard. The path will already be laid down for your kids.

    Trust me…the rest of the Gold Coast for someone coming from NYC is a cesspool and the worst of all worlds…..ugly – can’t walk anywhere – need a car to go anywhere and stuck in traffic when you use it – no upscale shopping – urban influences…..the only other option is Paulus Hook in JC…..

    gryffindor says:
    October 28, 2011 at 3:43 pm
    #68 Original NJ Expat – We are already in our career tracks; mine would do better in NJ (private practice), he could be in NJ or NYC depending on his employer (financial reporting). Neither of us is looking to stop working when we have kids, but hopefully I will be in a place where I can dump all the NYC jobs and just work at the NJ private practice part-time. His firm is very family friendly as well.

  98. 3b says:

    #95 The people that have a different idea of living in the city (as in the city is only Manhattan), are more oftne than not transplants who grew up in the middle of nowhere.

  99. 3b says:

    #91 Woodlawn is another nice area (not as nice as Riverdale),and reasonable rents, and one of the best public elementary schools in NYC, Don’t need a car, and there is a Metro North station,there 25 minutes to Grand Central.

    The stable areas in the Bronx have stayed pretty much stable. Always amazes me how NJ born and bred make fun of the Bronx, when NJ has so many crap holes.

  100. 3b says:

    #89 Most parts look like Newark or worse.
    Ah no, nothing compares to Newark, or Paterson, Camden, Trenton, and so many more oh so lovely cities and burgs in NJ

  101. Anon E. Moose says:

    Happy [93];

    Whenever you see something like that, know that they are advertising to rental landlords. Landlord doesn’t care about colors or curb appeal – only what they have to spend to get it producing income.

    That picture immediately tells the target audience that he doesn’t have to put in a bathroom; probably the most expensive renovation a landlord would do.

  102. 3b says:

    #87 Hackensack may be technically be in the suburbs, but it ain’t no suburb.

  103. 3b says:

    #84 JJ Bronxville is a town in Westchester Co, it is not in the Bronx. Also by Pelham, you mean either Pelham Pkwy, Pelham Gardens, or, Pelham Bay.

  104. Mikeinwaiting says:

    3b It’s JJ don’t let the facts get in the way. By the way I’m on tract for 15 in of snow in the hinter land, snow tires put on this afternoon. Have my snow blower ready (22 yr old son), scotch , cigs , & plenty of food. Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!
    Could be a bit more though, judging by the forecast.
    Windy. Rain and snow in the morning, then all snow in the afternoon. Snow may be heavy at times. Cold. High 38F. Winds NNE at 15 to 25 mph. Snow accumulating 5 to 8 inches.
    Windy. Snow, heavy at times, in the evening will taper to snow showers overnight. Low 28F. Winds NNW at 20 to 30 mph. Chance of snow 90%. 6 to 10 inches of snow expected. Winds could occasionally gust over 40 mph.

  105. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    He gives me a list of things to pick up at Shop-Rite

    I used to shop at that Shop-Rite (Route 46E, going up the hill in Little Falls, right?) even when I lived in Wayne. The prices and stocking were great and you could knock on the window in the meat department and the butcher would open it and chat with you about the cut of meat you would like and he would cut it for you fresh.

  106. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    98 – chifi …the only killer is getting up onto the 495 viaduct at rush hour…..

    You just jogged my memory. I was leaving that interview in Weehawken around rush hour, pretty psyched about getting a job offer. I’m working the Hurst shifter and clutch on my ’77 Camaro thinking, “Jesus Christ, when the hell am I going to get out of this hole and back up on the f@#~ing highway? I’m only 6 miles from home. I’m not doing this every day, I like taking the bus into NYC and having a couple drinks before I head home.”

  107. I got some rifles, a broken grenade launcher, scads of .223, plenty of whiskey and a basement full of strong red wine.

    Bring on the snow. Hell, I might even ring Mikey to meet up with me halfway at Hot Dog Johnny’s in Buttzville. We could spend the day checking neighborhoods for broken pipes and junked-out lawns.

  108. gryffindor says:

    #105 – yup, that’s my Shop-Rite. I have “pick up biscotti” on the list for Monday.

  109. nhhpzuxc says:

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  110. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Just spent night on wall street (in a nice hotel, not a smelly sleeping bag).

    Think I’ll get some coffee and take a peek at the freak show

  111. gary says:


    You’re killing me… really. You’re husband needs the view? Seriously. And if you plan to have kids, do not buy in Nutley or Clifton, even if it’s the “Montclair Heights” section. You both work in Jersey. Find the most affordable house you can in the most sought after town. Period. And forget the “Gold Coast” nonsense as well… it’s an over-priced, over-hyped sales marketing tool. The Gold coast is a scam. 100 years of family roots in North Jersey with Hudson County as ground zero will tell you everything you need to know about my background. Make one move and be done with it and circle only those “to die for” towns.

  112. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    No time to take in the zucotti freak show, but as I was born in cambridge, and attended school there and in amherst, occupations of hippies aren’t news.

    I did find myself on John St. I must say, it was rather short and narrow. Not what I expect from a street named after the most interesting man in the world.

  113. Mikeinwaiting says:

    gryffindor Ditto Garys 111, I’m another Hudson county guy. He needs the views, your killing Gary & I am just astonished. Put your foot down my dear in no uncertain terms. This is a big financial move making the right one on your first buy is critical. Unless as a couple you are different from 99% of people children will come, follow Garys advice!

  114. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Meat when we going for hot dogs!

  115. POS Cape says:


    I bought the absolute cheapest housing in a “to die for” train town in northern bergen county. I would have to agree with Gary, especially his take on the Gold Coast. I never did understand the lure. Try getting in or out of Edgewater at rush hour.

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