NAHB: Fix housing or the kids get it

From HousingWire:

NAHB: Housing slump linked to student debt

The dramatic rise in student loan debt stems from the fact that parents of college-aged students are financially strapped and no longer able to help with tuition after losing thousands of dollars in household wealth, the National Association of Home Builders said.

“As more and more parents face tighter budget restraints as a result of lower home values, this is forcing an increasing number of students to take out loans for tuition, essentially shifting some of the burden of paying for college from parents to students,” said Barry Rutenberg, chairman of the National Association of Home Builders said.

Federal Reserve data shows household wealth plunging 40% from 2007 to 2010 as values dropped.

“Together, these findings should serve as an urgent wake-up call for policymakers to do their part to ensure a full-fledged housing recovery moves forward to restore the balance sheets of tens of millions of home owning families, create jobs and spur economic growth,” said Rutenberg.

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83 Responses to NAHB: Fix housing or the kids get it

  1. grim says:

    From MyCentralJersey:

    Tax appeals hit record high, put squeeze on municipalities

    Financially strapped after her husband’s death last year, Paulette Fagone hoped that appealing the assessment on her Marlboro home would bring a measure of relief.

    It did. Fagone, 65, appeared before the Monmouth County Board of Taxation in Freehold and got her home’s assessed value lowered by nearly $100,000, a 17 percent reduction that cut her property tax bill by $2,000.

    “Last year was a gift to me,” she said. “On a fixed income, it was a very big help, let me tell you.”

    What can be a big help to struggling homeowners such as Fagone, however, is turning into a big headache for municipalities, whose budgets are taking a hit from a rising wave of tax appeals in a depressed real estate market.

    Last year, successful appeals lopped $3.8 billion in assessed property value off the state’s nearly $1 trillion tax base. That cost local and county governments an estimated $76 million in lost property taxes.

    With their budgets already adopted by the time local assessors and county tax boards finished up the last of more than 87,000 appeals, some governments were forced to cut spending, dip into surplus or finance the shortfall.

    Monroe Township, the Central Jersey municipality perhaps hit the hardest by tax appeals, had to dip into its surplus to compensate for $11.4 million in 2010 and 2011 appeals, Business Administrator Wayne Hamilton said. That doesn’t include another 1,000 appeals filed this year, Hamilton said.

    The township’s 6,000 appeals during the last three years make up a third of its mostly residential tax base, Hamilton said.

  2. Fast Eddie says:

    I linked this yesterday for those who may have missed it. I thought it was worth a repeat:

  3. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    College is a real rip-off these days. A private school works out to over $2 million dollars spent to “educate” every 10 students.

  4. Mike says:

    Good Morning New Jersey

  5. Fast Eddie says:

    By the way, I went to an open house (just one!) yesterday in Woodcliff Lake. The yard was very nice. The house itself was nice… not “omg” nice but it needed some changes. Actually, it needed some work here and there. It was another one of those houses where I wasn’t feeling that chemistry. It was just off Werimus Road but the property was shielded by a nice green barrier.

    This time, I brought up the “contingency” word almost immediately and once again, the realtor said “they will not accept a contingency on another sale.” I asked her how many pending offers are on the house… she said none. I asked if there were any offers made, she hesitated and said, “Just one.” I asked her if it was a lowball and she stumbled over her words and basically said, “Not really.” It was a lowball but she didn’t want to admit it. Actually, it was probably a true value offer.

    I told her the sellers WILL accept a contingency because I plan to SELL my house, not display it like a museum. I explained, very humbly, that my house is a house, not a precious gem and I will list it to sell. Anyway, I’m not interested in the house but after being there for close to 30 minutes, no one else showed up. F*cking tick… tick…

  6. Fast Eddie says:

    “They can’t find a new job,” she said. “Or they found a job but where they were once earning $100,000 now they’re earning $45,000. They’re trying to live in the same house either because houses are hard to sell in this market or they’re underwater and there’s no benefit to selling. Then it snowballs. It leads to emotional stress. They’re all accessing multiple services. It’s really sad looking at some of these people.”

    Perhaps they need to look into one of those shovel ready jobs.

  7. Fast Eddie says:

    “We were renting a house in Allendale and I’d been out of work for a while. On Christmas morning a basket of food was left at our door — no note or anything.” A year and a half later, Fugazzie stops to compose himself before noting how he felt both overwhelmed with gratitude at someone’s generosity and embarrassed by his need to accept the gift.

    For those keeping score, that’s Allendale folks, not Garfield. Sell? Sell to whom?

  8. Fast Eddie says:

    Not everyone who’s struggling shows up in the increasing numbers of North Jersey residents seeking public assistance. Even those who work full time often are getting by on far less — and with far less of a sense of financial security

    People like Lisa Brummel, a 57-year-old Ho-Ho-Kus resident who works in publishing sales, and her husband, Joel Frank, a former project manager at NJ Transit who now works as a contract employee for another government agency. Both know there’s a real risk that they could be unemployed again in virtually an instant.

    Brummel said it took her husband more than two years to find a job after NJ Transit cut back in 2009. Laid off from her former job in 2010, it took Brummel almost a year to hook onto a consulting position that offers no sure promise of permanence. And her husband’s current work is guaranteed only for the length of his contract, which runs for 220 days and has already been extended twice. After that?

    “We don’t know,” Brummel said, shrugging.

    And we have to pay our own health insurance.”

    Finding a job with benefits is at the top of their priority list right now. Brummel said they don’t think too much about finding permanent jobs, because “the way things are these days, there’s no such thing as a permanent job.”

    Are we still prestigious?

  9. Jill says:

    Freedy #7: It can’t be any worse than the tainted food and water that Halliburton gave them during the Bush years.

  10. Fast Eddie says:


    What’s the section of Westwood you mentioned the other day that’s considered the better or more upscale part of town?

  11. 3B says:

    #8 Fast: I was at a couple of open houses yesterday, very quiet, Did Hillsdale and Midland Park. My spouse and I cannot make up our minds.

  12. Fast Eddie says:


    Find a realtor that you can stomach and have them give you a list of every house matching you’re search criteria. Find a house and make the bid based on multiple comps. Don’t make it more complicated than it is.

  13. JJ says:

    I am back and survived my visit to dentist on Friday, than God they dont knock you out, otherwise I dont think the assistant could resist.
    Anyhow Chifi BAC Call Trups like crazy last week. My favorite bought in 2/2009 got called too. Almost 4 billion in high Coupon Trups got called. I got 100K worth of Trups called 7/25 all yielding between 8% and 8.278%. Will be imposible to replace that income with any bond remotely close in credit rating.
    Called 7-25-2012 BANKAMERICA CAP II INCME PFD 8.00000% 12/15/2026 at 102
    Bought 02/13/2009 at a price of $0.78

  14. The Original NJ Expat says:

    [17] Even if they knocked you out, how would the guy flip you over without anyone noticing?

    I am back and survived my visit to dentist on Friday, than God they dont knock you out, otherwise I dont think the assistant could resist.

  15. Fast Eddie says:

    List of Oblama accomplishments:

    – “Government transfers to the personal sector now makes up nearly one-fifth of total household income,” Rosenberg writes. “Even Lyndon Johnson, architect of the ‘Great Society’, would blush at that.”
    – Record number of Americans living on Food Stamps — 46 million or 1-in-7 in 2011.
    – The American Dream Shrinks: Avg. Net Worth Falls 40% From 2007-2010
    – Despite recent signs of stabilization, the national housing market remains depressed, with nearly 30% of mortgage holders under water.
    – As with housing, Rosenberg dismisses the job market’s improvement in recent years. He cites the “real” unemployment rate — currently 14.8% — and the fact the country is still down 5 million jobs from its 2007 peak.
    – Judging by historical research on past debt deleveraging cycles, this ‘modern day depression’ is only halfway done, Rosenberg says, and that’s his glass half-FULL outlook.

    Read the last statement. Many times I said we are in the middle of the 5th inning.

  16. 3B says:

    #15 Fast: It is not that, it really is making up our minds as to what town we want to live in. Pros and cons for all of the ones we are looking at.

  17. Fast Eddie says:


    What’s some of the cons that you’re weighing?

  18. J La says:

    Re 17&18, priceless…

  19. 3B says:

    #21 Just concerns about where some of these towns re going, the people running them. I am basing it on what I have seen where I am now, and how residents and local officials made a mess of the place.

    I am also concerned about some of the areas where I have been looking. Some of them look like deliverance country. When the grass has not been mowed in weeks, and there are garbage cans thrown around, and all sorts of apparatus and debris thrown around the drive ways, it does not create that warm and fuzzy feeling.

  20. freedy says:

    Hurry to your local realtor. bidding wars for homes . Rush

  21. Mikeinwaiting says:

    May New Home Sales: 369K vs. 350K expected.

  22. Mikeinwaiting says:

    freedy 26 it’s just mostly dead, not really dead.LOL When you have to get out the party hats with that number considering the chart………………

  23. Marty says:

    The popping of fraud bubble in housing exposes the fraud in higher education, love it.

  24. The Original NJ Expat says:

    [29] Looks just like the Route 15 interchange on Route 80.

  25. JJ says:

    actually I dont understand why there is traffic in NJ. It appears everyone who lives in NJ loves it and would never want to leave. Folks in CT and NY had NJ and never would want to go there.

    Personally, only 3 reasons to go to NJ, catch a flight, catch a football game or dump a body.

  26. Sima says:

    #2 Fast Eddy YES , the article rings so true. After unemployment runs out, and noone hires someone who’s out of work “too long”, they become homeless because they can’t pay rent or mortgage, but then where do these people go? Tent cities?

    And with new jobs basically being contract jobs, how can the economy recover? People with contract jobs are usually afraid to spend any money – they have to try to hoard some for the times in-between contract job. Forget restaurants, trips, new anything unless absolutely needed.
    I know of one person who has been a contract worker (college educated) for several years, but now hasn’t found contract work for several months. Divorced with a disabled child, but they’re all still living in the same house until the bank takes it . No unemployment benefits (because he’s a contract worker) and very, very desperate.
    And let’s face it – minimum wage jobs don’t pay enough to live on.

  27. 1987 Condo buyer says:

    #31…was thinking same for Long Island, except I could not come up with the 3 reasons….

  28. The Original NJ Expat says:

    Long Island has much better cancer clusters than NJ.

  29. The Original NJ Expat says:

    About 6 years ago I had to go to New Britain, CT several times on business. I couldn’t believe that any place like that existed in CT. Stanley Tools has always been *the* employer there and when they moved manufacturing off shore, well you know the drill. Anyway, NESN (NESN is to Red Sox like YES is to Yankees) has a new sports honey named Jenny Dell ( ) and she even got veteran announcer Jerry Remy to help here try to sell her house in New Britain on the air, even gave the phone number of her realtor out. Well here’s her house. I bet some of you wish you could airlift this to BC for the $299K asking price:

    It’s in a really nice part of a really sh1tty town.

  30. Sima says:

    #35 Looked at it: big house, big lot (27,007 sq ft), but big taxes worthy of NJ of $7462. (on a $299,000 house)

  31. Theo says:

    Sima, In NJ the taxes on that house would be double.

  32. Sima says:

    In my town in Essex County those taxes are about right on a sub-$300k house.
    But then again, I’m not in prestigious Bergen County….or Montclair….

  33. Theo says:

    You’re not getting a 2700 SqFt house with 2/3 of an acre for sub-300k in northern NJ unless the place is a rat infested disaster.

  34. JJ says:

    the cancer cluster thing is stupid. stats are dumb in general. Long Beach Long Island one might say has the longest life expectancy. But instead it has numerous nursing homes for the aged. All those residents are techincally long beach residents and all those 100 birthdays every day has nothing to do with long beach.

    The Original NJ Expat says:
    June 25, 2012 at 12:09 pm

    Long Island has much better cancer clusters than NJ.

  35. Fast Eddie says:

    We have such a gracious and virtuous administration occupying the White House. They’ve defined a new level of decency and respect that would be the envy of non-conformists the world over:

  36. JJ says:

    Unless someone has four or more kids what do you need a 2,700 square foot house for. It is around 1,000 square feet too much for a family with only 2 kids.

    I also find it odd when you go to Levittown you see 1,200 square foot houses with five kids and in super rich towns like Alpine you see 6,000 square foot houses with two kids. Perhaps with so much room Mommy and Daddy are on separate wings and have so much to do with pools, tennis courts and media rooms that they dont have much time left over for baby making.

    Theo says:
    June 25, 2012 at 1:45 pm

    You’re not getting a 2700 SqFt house with 2/3 of an acre for sub-300k in northern NJ unless the place is a rat infested disaster.

  37. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [41] fast eddie,

    What confounded me about that episode was that Reagan never struck me as one who sided with or promoted the anti-gay agenda. In fact, he really never gave the social conservatives much at all. I don’t remember any gay controversies under his administration or ever knowing where he stood on gay issues. Maybe things were different when he was governor. Don’t know.

  38. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [31] JJ,

    “Personally, only 3 reasons to go to NJ, catch a flight, catch a football game or dump a body.”

    Amen. Why d’ya think I am getting out of dodge?

    Though personally, I like the Brig. A lot. If I could airlift the entire town (well, maybe not the entire town) to SEPA, I’d be happy.

  39. 3B says:

    #44 Com: Did I miss something? Are you moving back to Mass?

  40. Libtard in the City says:


    Unless you move to a state that does not have any declining cities to pay for, I fear you will not be happy. If you were smart, you would Wyoming or North Dakota. Or better yet, North Belize.

  41. chicagofinance says:

    Here you go….

    Offal Tale: For This Club, Everything Is on the Menu
    In New York City, ‘Innard Circle’ Samples Wide Range of Fare; ‘Always Terrific’ .
    You’ll never be a member of the Innard Circle if the likes of brains in black butter, Uzbek boiled spleen or Fujianese pig heart make you squirm.

    Since 1999, an intrepid band of New York City foodies has been meeting about once a month to indulge their penchant for “nose to tail eating” in a city that provides great opportunity to do so. The city’s thousands of ethnic restaurants are constantly refreshed by new waves of immigrants, many of whose cultures serve animal parts that most Americans wouldn’t touch with a 10-foot fork.

    For the organ-lovers though, what really gets their goat—or pig or sheep or rabbit—is when a restaurant is out of a delicacy they traveled across town to sample.

    “I mean really, who eats bull’s peni$ before 7:00 p.m.?” complained Bobby Ghosh at a May meeting, recounting a recent trip to a northern Chinese restaurant in Queens.

    They had to settle for the animal’s somewhat chewy te$ticles and a dish on the menu called “Big Buckstraps Paddywack.” The waitress, who only spoke Mandarin, pointed energetically to her diaphragm when asked what they were eating, Mr. Ghosh said. That was as close as the group got to discerning what part of the animal it was.

    It was tough but tasty, they say.

    Mr. Ghosh, originally from Bengal in northeastern India, was Time Magazine’s Baghdad bureau chief for five years and worked in Hong Kong—both places where he sampled a wide range of food. Always seeking variety, different types of meat began to taste more or less the same to him.

    “But a camel’s eyeball is way different from a goat’s eyeball,” he said.

    Digging in to a five-course meal of organ meats specially prepared for the group by Umbrian chef Sandro Fioriti at his Upper East Side eatery Sandro’s, journalist Daniel Okrent, one of the group’s founders, tries to explain what attracts him to innards.

    “Growing up, I was a very picky eater,” he said. But his wife Becky, a food critic and a member, introduced him to what’s known as the “fifth quarter” of the animal and he’s never looked back.

    “There’s no question there’s an element of showing off, but it’s great food,” he said, between bites of brain, kidney, intestines and sweetbreads with polenta.

    Though he has had many memorable meals with the group in New York—and who wouldn’t remember the likes of “crispy colorectal,” North Korean jellied tripe or a central Asian organ mélange called “geez-beez”—he says the pinnacle of his offal-eating days came in the 1990s during a trip to Italy. An old restaurant near Rome’s stockyards served him rigatoni alla pajata—the intestines of a freshly-slaughtered nursing calf still containing the curdled milk of its mother.

    “Does that gross you out?” asked Melissa Easton, an industrial designer and the group’s unofficial “organ”-izer.

    A shrug brings a nod of approval, as if having passed a squeamishness test. Many haven’t.

    “We’ve had people join us for a single meal and never come back, without explanation,” Ms. Easton said. “There’s a certain kind of discomfort that registers on their face when they realize what they’ve gotten into.”

    No wonder the late Calvin Schwabe’s 1979 book on Americans’ disdain for foods that he called “cheap, nutritious and good to eat” is titled “Unmentionable Cuisine.” He chalked it up to “prejudice or ignorance.”

    It is no accident that the Innard Circle, which has about a dozen steady members, isn’t only a well-traveled group but, with journalists, authors and a book publisher, a well-read one too. After all, the most famous organ-eater of all time is the character Leopold Bloom in James Joyce’s novel Ulysses. Bloom “ate with relish the inner organs of beasts and fowls. He liked thick giblet soup, nutty gizzards, a stuffed roast heart, liverslices fried with crustcrumbs, fried hencods’ roes.”

    Ms. Easton, like most members, struggles to come up with the oddest thing she has eaten because it all seems normal to her and usually delicious. The best thing she has had is seared calf liver sashimi at a Japanese place in the West Village.

    Jeannette Seaver, a publisher and author of four cookbooks, joined the group a decade ago because of her love for her native French food.

    “Our cuisine offers many succulent dishes made of innards, so it seemed right for me to be part of the group,” she says. “The food is daring, challenging at times, but always terrific.”

    The group, which is also known as Organ Grinders, finds plenty of humor in the foods. Fond of puns, the word “offal” is particularly ripe for abuse. The word’s English etymology speaks volumes about Anglo-Saxon disdain for organs. With origins in the 14th century, it is thought to refer to the “off-fall” from the butcher’s block, meaning the less desirable parts.

    Some members’ attraction to offal stems from their disdain for Western squeamishness and wastefulness.

    “This isn’t weird—it’s perfectly normal for lots of people around the world,” said criminologist Leonid Lantsman between mouthfuls of spicy duck tongue and braised goose intestine at a June meeting of the club at Chinatown eatery Rong Hang. “If more people ate entrails and offal then we wouldn’t waste so much food.”

    The seven-course meal began with duck kidney, before moving on to more hard-core offerings: beef large intestine in Fujianese red wine paste and pig stomach. The somewhat lighter frog’s legs and pig skin hot and sour soup followed and then gave way to a couple of exotic but non-organ offerings.

    “Watch out everyone—there’s no offal in this one!” joked Robert Sietsema, a food critic at the Village Voice, as a seafood dish was placed on the table.

    The one organ the group has yet to sample, despite it being a delicacy for some ethnic groups, is uterus.

    “I guess it’s more of a home-cooked thing,” said Ms. Easton.

    But she would eat it in a heartbeat.

    “Am I missing some part of my brain—the part that screams revulsion? Perhaps. In fact, very likely.”

    A version of this article appeared June 25, 2012, on page A1 in the U.S. edition of The Wall Street Journal, with the headline: Offal Tale: For This Club, Everything Is on the Menu.

  42. JJ says:

    damm Jersey Drivers

    chicagofinance says:
    June 25, 2012 at 3:23 pm


  43. relo says:


    Thanks for the response to prior post.

  44. 30 year realtor says:

    #13 – Fast Eddie – The section of Westwood is Goodwin Park.

  45. Fast Eddie says:

    30 year [51],

    Thank you! :)

  46. Fast Eddie says:

    Nom [43],

    The left doesn’t need an excuse to control their ignorance… the barrio mentality is portable and ready to unleash at a moments notice. This president embraces the public housing mentality at every turn. Why do you thank they are there in the first place?

  47. JJ says:

    Sam Drucker Dead. I guess the General Store from Petticoat Junction” and “Green Acres is finally out of business.

  48. 3B says:

    Oh and by the way, unless the kid is getting one of the U.S. gov subsidized loans, mom and dad are paying for the loans any how, if using Sallie Mae, as they require a co-signer. Just saying.

  49. It’s all turning to shit, and the pace is accelerating. The Japanese Lost Decades represent a best-case scenario for our future, but it’s looking more like we’re hurtling toward the collapse of Western civilization.

    Please wake me when it’s time to begin shooting.

  50. I’d tell kids to borrow their asses off for kollege. At some point, the debt will all be declared unpayable, and it will all be written off. The edumacation bubble only exists because there is a cheap financing mechanism available to pretty much anyone with a pulse. When the financing mechanism collapses (as it always does in any asset bubble), the price of an education will collapse.

  51. JJ says:

    I did not take a loan out for college. Something call BEOP and TAP. Loans are for suckers. Free is good.

  52. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Colleges not only offered full boats, but also hookers and a board seat so he would attend.

    He is JJ, The Most Interesting Man In The World.

  53. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [46] lib,

    So long as I an not a bagholder, I’m good just about anywhere. And NJ is a lot closer than PA to making everyone bagholders, so I put off the collateral effects.

  54. borat the dictator says:


  55. relo says:

    Dateline had a program last night on suburban poverty. None of it would be news here, but still, pretty stark.

  56. Shore Guy says:

    “Thanks for the response to prior post.”

    About the OBX? You are welcome. If you end up in the Duck area, make sure that you connect with one of the companies that run a sunrise jeep tour of the four-wheel area up in Corolla. They start in the dark and you go up where the wild horses are close to the VA border and watch the sun break over the horizon with the sound and sight of the water and wild horses all around. It is a great bit of fun.

  57. caljn says:

    44 Comrade

    Then go…at last and once and for all. And don’t let the door hit ‘ya.
    Either that or stop posting. Please.

  58. Shore Guy says:

    Another thing about the northern OBX. When it comes to food, buy at Harris Teeter, not Food Lion. Harris Teeter is the closest thing to a Wegmans that I have encountered.

  59. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [67] caljn,

    Stop posting? Let me reply in a way you’ll understand: Fuhgeddaboudit.

  60. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [69] redux,

    But I am going. We plan to be out of NJ before Sept. Yes, I know I won’t have proximity to NYC. But then I never gauged my self worth by proximity to something important.

  61. dan in debt says:


    Even though there is no chance in hades I’m voting for Obama, I wouldn’t bring up the 35% drop in household net worth since 2007 as his fault. We all came to this blog because we vomited at what people were considering as “net worth” back in those days.

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