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The Slowdown People Talk About Is Not Demand Driven, It’s Supply Driven

A report from the Palm Beach Post in Florida. “South Florida is the nation’s capital of mortgage fraud, CoreLogic says. The metro area of Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties had the highest levels of home-loan chicanery in the nation during the second quarter of 2019. The New York metro area ranked second nationally, followed by McAllen, Texas, in third, Los Angeles in fourth and Daytona Beach in fifth.”

“‘Florida is known for lengthy foreclosure times, so the window of time for distress-motivated fraud is longer than in most other states,’ said Bridget Berg, principal of Fraud Solutions Strategy for CoreLogic. ‘This also delays the beginning of credit recovery for the consumer, which may spur more fraud related to hiding past derogatory credit to qualify for a home in the future.'”

“South Florida borrowers fudge their loan applications to boost income levels and hide other real estate debt, Berg said. That’s similar to the types of fraud taking place in other parts of the U.S., she said — but it occurs ‘at a much higher rate’ in South Florida.”

The Post and Courier in South Carolina. “Falling interest rates and an expanding economy failed to boost home sales across the Charleston region in August as a lack of product and rising prices kept buyers on the sidelines. Housing industry officials put the blame squarely on local government policies that have held back new construction, throwing supply and demand out of whack.”

“Also figuring into the mix is a reluctance by developers to overbuild and get stuck with homes they can’t sell, which happened during the last downturn.”

The Lansing State Journal in Michigan. “Statistics provided by the Greater Lansing Association of REALTORS® paint a picture of different market in August than we have seen throughout the last few months. In July 2019, 629 units were sold. There was a decrease to 594 units in August 2019. At a 5.6 percent decrease, it is not enough to cause alarm, but it is noticeable. Maybe more telling is the fact that in August 2018 683 homes were sold. That equates to a 13 percent drop in a year. Inventory has been steadily rising since March 2019.”

“Could these statistics indicate a shift to a buyers market is coming? Stay tuned.”

From Bisnow on New York. “The developer responsible for kicking off Billionaires’ Row in New York City is facing a whole new reality with his latest high-end condominium offering. Gary Barnett’s Central Park Tower topped out in August, and the chairman of Extell Development said he has been forced to offer discounts at the supertall, which is the Western Hemisphere’s tallest residential building. ‘The slowdown people talk about in New York City is not demand driven,’ he said. ‘It’s supply driven.'”

The Sacramento Bee in California. “CoreLogic data show the Bay Area real estate market in particular has faltered this summer. Median sales prices declined in July for the third month in a row, and the Bay Area saw 12 straight months of declines in the number of homes bought and sold. Mark Hamrick, a nationally-known economist for Bankrate.com, says that buying or selling a home should be based on a person or family’s individual needs at the moment.”

“‘We have a saying: ‘People don’t get married when wedding dresses go on sale,’ he said. ‘People need to be prudent with their finances. That includes don’t overextending oneself in buying a home, but also not to panic.'”

“With recession fears mounting, should home buyers and sellers in California’s capital region hurry up and make deals now, or hunker down and wait out the tempest? ‘It’s hard to think the housing market is going to be swayed much if it’s a quick recession,’ writes Ryan Lundquist, a Sacramento real estate analyst. ‘But if buyers and sellers end up struggling financially and losing jobs, we can expect a greater effect on home prices.'”

From The Tribune in California. “For many San Luis Obispo County residents, the prospect of buying a home can seem like an unaffordable and out-of-reach fantasy. Even so, homebuyers find a way to own a slice of Central Coast paradise. Some save up, others get help from family and still others use loan programs to make the numbers add up.”

“When Wendy Greene bought her Los Osos home in 2017, she was tired of renting and wanted a place to call her own. Greene used funds from her 401(k) account and money from her mother to purchase a $458,000, 1,368-square-foot house with a mortgage that was close to what she was already paying for a San Luis Obispo rental. ‘I didn’t want to keep throwing money away on rent,’ she said.”

“But then she found out about the supplemental property taxes she would have to pay to help fund the community’s recently constructed Los Osos Wastewater Project. Greene quickly refinanced her mortgage, but still ended up owing hundreds more per month than she anticipated. She now spends a large portion of her take-home pay on her housing. ‘I think I just rushed into the house a little sooner,’ she said.”

“Greene, who works as an environmental compliance director for an energy company, is considering taking a supplemental job or renting out a room to help with her housing costs. ‘I love owning here, but I’m not sure it’s going to be sustainable,’ she said.”

From Consumer Affairs. “Home prices in major U.S. housing markets have risen so much that one market barometer says it could signal potential distress in the overall housing market. According to the Beracha, Hardin & Johnson Buy vs. Rent (BH&J) Index, compiled jointly by Florida Atlantic University (FAU) and Florida International University (FIU), 19 of the 23 measured markets are showing the price of housing as well above their long-term pricing trends.”

“But the latest index shows the higher prices have led to a decrease in demand for homeownership that now makes renting more attractive in terms of building wealth. ‘This is quite worrisome,’ said Eli Beracha, real estate economist at FIU. ‘However, the trend towards lower BH&J scores is a good sign that the nation’s housing markets are pulling back from the edge of potential disaster.'”

“The creators of the BH&J Index say all indicators suggest the current housing cycle is about to end, and they see the housing market going one of two ways. ‘Housing markets will either soon experience a slow reversion to a long-term pricing trend or experience a rapid fall in prices below this same trend with a slow reversion,’ said Ken H. Johnson, a real estate economist at FAU. ‘We hope for the former and fear the latter.'”

This Post Has 136 Comments
  1. ‘South Florida borrowers fudge their loan applications to boost income levels and hide other real estate debt, Berg said. That’s similar to the types of fraud taking place in other parts of the U.S., she said — but it occurs ‘at a much higher rate’ in South Florida’

    But. jingle mail said no fraud? He also says he just sold another shack, about the 100th one by now, so he’s a lion. What say you jingle mail? Can’t run your big mouth now can you? John? John?

    Bueller?

    1. Oooo, I know. You sunsabitches can pay to start your own blog, moderate it all day 7 days a week and say whatever you like.

      What’s that? Too much money and trouble? Yeah, well I’ve done it for 15 years and I’m sick of your ungrateful BS and constant whining.

        1. I’ve learned so much too, not just about housing but about money, the stock market, the QM rule, Tesla, CNG cars, currency wars in China, toilet-free apartments in Australia, and people chasing luxury airboxes in, of all place, Lagos, Nigeria.

      1. “I’ve done it for 15 years”

        Ben Jones, I have so much money left after “throwing money away on rent” every month that I don’t know where to throw it.

        Lurkers, you can read and learn. Or you can follow the siren song of REALTOR into bankruptcy, divorce, suicide.

        The choice is yours…

      2. “I’ve done it for 15 years”

        I think 100 years from now your body of work on this blog will still be a very important resource for researchers and historians trying to explain our bubble. We readers appreciate your hard work, and future generations will too.

        1. i think the work is invaluable.

          I just dont think that someone will research unless they have a very interesting story – like freakanomics or flashboys.

        2. I think 100 years from now your body of work on this blog will still be a very important resource for researchers and historians trying to explain our bubble.

          I used to think that. But now I worry there will be nobody left who cares by the time the plunder is over.

      1. Jingle Male is a poster — I think he went by the name Paladin(?) at one point — who was a landlord of several SFH rentals in the Sacramento area. He bought them in 2008-2009 and, IIRC had pretty nice positive cash flow. However, he was an LL and teased pretty hard here, especially when prices began to drop about a year ago. But last we heard, he was selling off his properties and planning to retire to San Diego.

        I really don’t think he lost money. Yes, prices are dropping I admit it. But it’s gonna be tough for prices to drop below 2009 levels. I hope he cashed them all out.

        1. Gotcha, I agree with you. I don’t see prices dropping below their 2008-2009 lows, the PPT won’t allow it. They may come close, probably more ~2014-2015 prices. Nevertheless, everyone who bought at the trough in 2008 loves to think they’re some real estate guru. It’s very annoying.

        2. “But it’s gonna be tough for prices to drop below 2009 levels.”

          Why would you assume that? Confirmation bias? Wishful thinking?

          I personally don’t claim to know, but I note that one interpretation of the negative interest rates that have swept up over 30% of the global supply of sovereign bonds is that many of the most knowledgeable and wealthy investors around the planet are willing to pay creditworthy governments insurance premiums to protect their wealth against a looming financial crisis.

          And given how overvalued U.S. residential housing has once again become, due to a combination of government-sponsored lending to marginally qualified borrowers plus a massive influx of investors trying to capitalize on the historically high rate of post-2012 appreciation, I wouldn’t presume that U.S. housing valuations will go unscathed.

          However, a big wild card is whether the Trump-Powell Fed will continue the Obama-Bernanke Fed’s practice of providing a backstop to housing prices in the event of a crash. So far, Trump has gone to great lengths to repudiate and repeal everything Obama did, but maybe it will be different with housing.

          1. one interpretation of the negative interest rates

            Another possible interpretation is that there isn’t anything out there that’s a good investment, and that there isn’t anything worth buying at current prices.

          2. Sort of related..

            More liquidity does not lead agents to spend/invest more. There is no higher solvent credit demand because monetary policy perpetuates overcapacity and zombifies the economy. Share of zombie companies has soared c30% since 2013″

            “Negative rates zombify the economy and are a massive transfer of wealth from savers and productive sectors to the indebted and inefficient.”

          3. So far, Trump has gone to great lengths to repudiate and repeal everything Obama did, but maybe it will be different with housing.

            To me it a mixed bag. We got the tax reform which put a cap on SALT and MID at too high of a level (but at least it was a start). But we are getting jawboning for lower rates (and even negative rates), so that part seems a lot like the Bernanke/Yellen/Obama ZIRP policies.

            Personally, I don’t think we will see a repeat of 2008-2009 in terms of price decline because you have the executive branch pushing so hard on easy money. I think it will be enough to see sideways movement for a long time except for the high end mansions and uber luxury stuff.

            Note, this is NOT what I hope happens, it is just what I think will happen. What I want to happen is a bigger correction than 2008. That is when we turned from bear to bull and bought a property at about 40% discount.

          4. The SALT and MID caps would NEVER have happened with Hilary.

            I suspect that housing prices will go down nationwide, but the impact will very a lot on the locality, with the bubbly areas with money losing companies (e.g. SF especially, plus Seattle and such) being hit hardest.

          5. I suspect that housing prices will go down nationwide, but the impact will very a lot on the locality, with the bubbly areas with money losing companies (e.g. SF especially, plus Seattle and such) being hit hardest.

            That sounds reasonable. The bigger (e.g. more inflated) they are, the harder they fall.

  2. ‘She now spends a large portion of her take-home pay on her housing. ‘I think I just rushed into the house a little sooner’

    ‘Greene…is considering taking a supplemental job or renting out a room to help with her housing costs. ‘I love owning here, but I’m not sure it’s going to be sustainable’

    Well it was cheaper than renting Wendy. Oh wait…

    1. John/Dave/D00med told me that renting is throwing your money in the trash. You see, Wendy is very wise to own a home now and get in on the sweet equity train!

    2. That whole article is a hoot. Of the five owners profiled, only one of them bought the house himself. One other owner got a USDA loan and the other three got money from family.

      And the idiot who bought the house himself has a high salary and “works remotely.” Remotely? Why the F did he buy in California??!?

      1. The same reason why all these foreign speculators and money launders brought in Bay Area, SoCAL, Seattle, Manhattan, Miami, London, Sydney, Vancouver, Toronto, etc.

      2. That’s easy, and also explains why so many folks in my personal circles at home and at work own multiple California homes:

        As everyone knows, California real estate always goes up.

        1. They are ( some co-workers) buying CA RE because stock price is at a all time high, cashing RSU and buying RE. What could go wrong.

          They know I’m negative on RE as a speculation investment so I only over hear the conversation in the Cube farm. And the Chinese ( half the company at least ) I think they stopped the RE investment a year or so ago.

          Funny I work next to a Penny MAC “boiler room” or what ever it is , its Countrywide back from the ashes. Mostly young people work there.

          1. They are ( some co-workers) buying CA RE because stock price is at a all time high, cashing RSU and buying RE.

            At least they’re diversifying a bit, no?

  3. ‘the Bay Area real estate market in particular has faltered this summer. Median sales prices declined in July for the third month in a row, and the Bay Area saw 12 straight months of declines in the number of homes bought and sold’

    Eat yer crowz Thornberg.

    1. “Bay Area saw 12 straight months of declines in the number of homes bought and sold”

      last i checked 12 months is a year. A year of declines sounds awfully bad, lets break it down so not to offend the debt donkies whom all joined the CR8R club in the last 12 months, mabye bigger numbers confuse them and the REIC can continue hypnotizing its potential knife catchers.

  4. Give$ a large meaning to the $aying: “ya can’t take it with ya!” . … Knot even yer be$test pickup truck, yer favorite big tractor, or yer fine$t bird.dog! … 100 $quare mile$ Wow$ers. ( hey aqdan, includes wind energy royaltie$, + free cancer screenings! )

    Market$
    Boone Picken$ Leaves Behind $250 Million Texas Ranch for $ale

    Bloomberg |By Tina Davis and Patrick Clark |September 11, 2019

    T. Boone Pickens was a corporate raider, an oil wildcatter and the owner of a sprawling Texas ranch with the “world’s best quail hunting.”

    Pickens died Wednesday at the age of 91. His Mesa Vista Ranch, which is almost 65,000 acres, has an asking price of $250 million, one of the most expensive listings in the U.S. The ranch was first offered for sale in 2017

    The property features multiple structures, including the chapel where Pickens married his fifth wife in 2014 (they were divorced in 2017). It also has a golf course, two-story pub, gun room, dog kennel and movie theater. And as is befitting an energy tycoon, the ranch conveys both oil and gas royalty income and rights from wind generation royalties.

    If you needed another rea$on to buy — the ranch comes pre-equipped with pickup trucks, farming equipment and bird dogs.

    (No mention of an outdoor pizza.oven, Maybee that’$ $now.flake acce$$ories in Texas)

  5. “Greene, who works as an environmental compliance director for an energy company, is considering taking a supplemental job or renting out a room to help with her housing costs. ‘I love owning here, but I’m not sure it’s going to be sustainable,’ she said.”

    I’m not sure what this debt-junkie thinks she owns because she doesn’t own chit. In fact, it’s owning her. Can you imagine renting out a room to a stranger in the house you’re renting from the bank and local assessor to try to make ends meet? I know I had roommates one time in my twenties, and that was enough for me. Went out to the kitchen late one night to find the fat one drinking my milk straight from the carton. Suffice it to say I curtailed my most primitive urge to eliminate him as a food competitor.

  6. “Greene, who works as an environmental compliance director for an energy company, is considering taking a supplemental job or renting out a room to help with her housing costs. ‘I love owning here, but I’m not sure it’s going to be sustainable,’ she said.”

    you dont own chit Wendy, the bank does. You’ve signed up for a 30 year contract with them and if something happens where you cant make your monthly payment they will change the locks and toss you on the street. I’m told airbnb can help you with that unsustainable payment you signed up for, just be prepared to be daily toilet scrubbing and an occasional left behind needle here and there.

    1. I’ll believe it when I see it. The DoJ and FBI are rife with corrupt and co-opted swamp creatures and political hacks who have subverted and perverted the rule of law. I’m highly skeptical that McCabe and his ilk will ever face criminal consequences for criminal wrongdoing. Laws are for the little people.

  7. “South Florida is the nation’s capital of mortgage fraud, CoreLogic says. The metro area of Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties had the highest levels of home-loan chicanery in the nation during the second quarter of 2019.

    How can they single out a supposed epicenter of mortgage fraud, when it is so rampant and unchecked nationwide?

    1. Gold/silver is up too. That would be everyone anticipating the recession. I still might dollar-cost-average, so to speak, some physical. A little every couple months.

      1. Or just trying to get a better return than negative rates. The precious metals markets are highly manipulated probably by the big banks but in general if real interest rates are negative they do well.

      2. I still might dollar-cost-average

        A roll or two of old silver dimes could help you in an emergency. Before you go doing more investing, pay down your debt.

        Anyone buying gold/silver now is anticipating a huge inflation. We’ve already had a huge inflation via credit expansion and the next thing on the plate is the cascading defaults and deflation. When debts are hard to service, real assets come out of the woodwork at bargain prices. It took the Fed/Feds years to flood over the incipient credit crunch a decade ago, it will be worse next go around. Just sayin.

        1. I have less than $1K of CC which I will pay off at the end of the month. After that my only debt is the house. Do you mean I should pay off the house entirely before buying other stuff? And sit in cash waiting for fire sales? It is something I’m considering.

        2. I’m in this mindset as well. I don’t believe much of the fear mongering we often hear pointing at a collapsing US dollar and the need to run to PMs and / or crypto. I could be wrong but I have more faith in our economy surviving with our fiat currency rather than volatile PMs and definitely not in some new digital currency backed by an unknown creator and used to smuggle laundered money, drugs, and other illegal services into our country. I’ll take my chances with what I’ve earned and saved and the banking systems that may not return much but at least, for now, I know it’s there.

    1. There is tremendous overcapacity in the trucking business thanks to Bernanke/Yellenbucks looking for a place to go die. Now they are dying in that industry….very, very rapidly.

      1. Transportation sector slowdowns are a leading indicator of a looming economic recession.

        Contrary to what the truth-makers on CNBC would have us believe, a severe economic downturn is approaching.

        1. 18 months to 2 years ago trucking companies were scrambling to find enough drivers and were offering incentives for people to get trained. Times have changed.

          1. yes remember the commentary that they claimed the govt would have to set up a program to train 100K drivers.

            Whenever paid trade groups get involved … there is some fishy

  8. Article on today’s Drudge Report: U.S. government is monitoring snake-like UFOS spotted across the nation.

    Meanwhile, other snake-like objects are stealthily targeting the nether regions of anyone who overpaid for a shack.

  9. ‘The slowdown people talk about in New York City is not demand driven,’ he said. ‘It’s supply driven.’”

    Wrong, Gary. It’s buyers declining to sign on the dotted line for insanely overpriced skyboxes.

  10. ‘European Union officials and diplomats are “tearing their hair out” at the twists and turns of Labour’s “mad” Brexit policy and regret past tactical alliances with Remain campaigners.’

    ‘The source expressed regrets that links with Sir Keir Starmer, the shadow Brexit secretary, had helped shape Labour tactics that backfired by contributing to three defeats for Theresa May’s withdrawal agreement.’

    ‘There is growing belief among officials that hardline Remain supporters, such as Sir Keir, have helped create a political crisis that has rebounded on the EU by unravelling the deal.’

    ‘More widely, European governments now believe that it has been a mistake to back Remainers such as Tony Blair and Lord Mandelson, who have links in Brussels and Paris, in their efforts to use delays to the Brexit deadline to keep Britain inside the EU.’

    “Remainers in the EU once saw merit in extension because it kept Britain in the EU. That is changing and it is changing fast in the capitals,” a senior EU diplomat said. “It has not been helpful and has been a get out jail free card allowing the Westminster parliament to think they do not have to take responsibility for the withdrawal agreement.”

    https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/eu-officials-regret-getting-into-bed-with-remainers-wxh2gkvjc

    So ‘hardline Remain supporter Sir Keir’ was shadow Brexit secretary? No wonder they spun its wheels for years.

    1. “Long.live the Queen.of.Wales!”

      ‘It’s better to be free and poor than be a servant and poor’

      Broadcaster Eddie Butler is backing a vote for Welsh independence after the UK leaves the European Union.

      The former Welsh rugby captain wants Wales to become an independent nation as he feels the country will be worse off after Brexit.

      “It’s better to be free and poor than be a servant and poor,” he told the BBC’s Wales Live programme.

      Wales voted to leave the EU in the 2016 referendum and Conservative AM David Melding said: “If you are going to shift from the British state, you’d have to be very confident about what you’re proposing.”

      https://www.bbc.com/news/av/uk-wales-49673842/it-s-better-to-be-free-and-poor-than-be-a-servant-and-poor?intlink_from_url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.bbc.com%2Fnews%2Fwales%2Fwales_politics&link_location=live-reporting-map

  11. How many “Full House fans” that can afford a $6 million house could there possibly be?

    ‘Full House’ house takes a $250K price cut

    Emily Landes Published 3:00 pm PDT,
    Wednesday, September 11, 2019

    That’s right; the famed “Full House” house at 1709 Broderick first came to market sporting a full renovation and an asking price of just under $6 million on May 2. But with the summer over and the annual holiday slowdown around the corner, it just took a $250,000 price cut down to $5,749,000.

    Owner and show creator Jeff Franklin bought the home in 2016 for $4 million with the intention of renovating the interior to look like the ’90s sitcom set, according to an earlier SFGate story. He had the permits to do just that until his Lower Pac Heights (nope, not Alamo Square) neighbors complained that the newly revamped home would be even more of a draw to “Full House” fans.

    https://www.sfgate.com/ontheblock/article/Full-House-house-takes-a-250K-price-cut-14432564.php

  12. Already encountering realtor BS trying to view the two properties I previously mentioned. First property supposedly had an accepted offer that fell through because of buyer’s contingency; MLS doesn’t reflect that it was ever pending. Realtor for second property wanted preapproval letter before scheduling showing. Not sure how my realtor managed our scheduled showing without it.

    1. “Realtor for second property wanted preapproval letter before scheduling showing”

      I would recommend countering that request by demanding they write YOU a letter of why YOU should consider the possibility of catching their falling knife. Tell them to be very descriptive and bullet point how their shack separates itself from the growing number that are desperately added each day. Ain’t 2018 anymore REALTOR, no mas foreign investors

        1. I hear ya. Sad that this realtor holds all the cards and thinks they can require anything, a warm blooded body should suffice. I have been periodically vetting a shack I low balled back in June. It’s been sitting in “contingent” status since June 29 (day after my offer was placed) I suspect some fishy realtor shenanigans going on but still curious to see what it sells for. The market here has been going down (greedbags don’t want to give there properties away not accept the change in the market) and the amount of listings areincreasing daily so I’m not too butt hurt. Not to mention, if I did buy it I would have been in Spiffys club. Glad not to participate in the FB walk of shame just yet 🙂

      1. It showed like a overpriced and worn tract home — just bigger and more expensive to update. Depressing.

        Sounds like the opening sentence to a new generation literary masterpiece.

      2. hey, i definitely like your idea of a home. Way too much room, high maintenance pool, high end everything that costs a fortune to fix but i seriously do like / want it. my family wants a 2000-2500 sqft single level ranch style home which in santa cruz is basically a 1900’s pos shack that got flipped with home depot decor. i am almost thinking i would be better off building my ideal home / mixed with families version. i need to look into this idea more!

        1. a 2000-2500 sqft single level ranch style home

          That is what I was looking at before I decided on the 1031 exchange. I don’t mind renovations, if the price is right. What I don’t expect is to walk into a $1.695M-$1.795M home and almost immediately think it’ll be at least $100K to redo the kitchen and bathroom cabinets and another $100K to repair and/or replace the landscaping.

          1. Yeah at that price point I would expect to get everything I want and then some. Oddly I have never been to poway, I have family all over San Diego from fallbrook to carslbad to La Jolla. Last year I was down there I stayed in Carlsbad and had to deal with a 2 hour parking lot of traffic coming back from the zoo at rush hour commute time. We got that here too but it seemed a lot worse than what I remembered from visiting over the last 35+ years. Mabye my age and cynicism is a factor in why I think it’s getting over congested 😉

          2. Since your opting for the pool option, have you looked into salt water pools? I would much prefer a salt water pool

          3. salt water pool

            We’d also prefer a salt water pool. We need to look into if and how to switch the chemicals.

          4. Oddly I have never been to poway, I have family all over San Diego from fallbrook to carslbad to La Jolla.

            Poway’s slogan is “The City in the Country.” It’s not as rural as Fallbrook but parts of Poway can have that vibe. Poway is extremely diverse socio-economically. Twin Peaks Road is Poway’s Mason-Dixon line.

          5. it seemed a lot worse than what I remembered from visiting over the last 35+ years. Mabye my age and cynicism is a factor in why I think it’s getting over congested

            It’s gotten much worse. It’s not you.

    1. Democrats seem to believe no Hispanics or blacks who are law abiding own firearms. There will be people voting for Trump who would not even have considered it but for the Democrats overreaching on the gun control issue. Keeping mental people from obtaining guns is one thing but the Democrats do not gain any new voters with this position but they certainly do lose people.

      1. I dunno. I was at the laundromat yesterday washing a down pillow (needed a commercial front loader) and I borrowed some soap from an elderly lady. She spontaneously started talking about the need for some real gun regulation and reform. She was from small town Utah (Kanab and Parowan) and living in So. Utah all her life. All the other people in the laundromat basically chimed into the conversation and nodded their head in agreement. The polls show a consensus that GOP and Dems want some movement to try to address gun violence. I think doing nothing and blaming video games and mental health is a losing position.

        1. I was at the laundromat

          The right to bear arms is aimed at government goons and thugs. The criminally mentally ill do not need guns to kill numbers of people. They should be restrained. Honest peacekeepers should not be restrained, unless you’re a government goon and thug.

  13. Hong Kong developers are asking the government to defer the implementation of a vacancy tax on speculator-owned skyboxes, since that will accelerate existing cratering. But Hong Kong president Carrie Lam has acknowledged the link between unaffordable housing and social unrest. Sorry, developers, but you’re gonna have to just take one for the team.

    https://www.scmp.com/business/article/3027144/hong-kong-builders-urge-government-defer-roll-out-vacancy-tax-they-fear-it

  14. So the Democrats slam Trump on trade and the next day China makes concessions on pork and soybeans. Does not make them look too smart.

  15. I am waiting for prime real estate in Sacramento to drop! Places like mid-town, Land Park, East Sacramento and Curtis Park. I was walking around my hood this past weekend and 2-3 bedroom condo townhomes were listed at 600-800k! Pure insanity just to live close to work for low paying state jobs.

  16. ‘The value of rare Scotch whisky sold at auction has declined for the first time in 10 years’

    ‘An oversupply of rare bottles, and an increasing number of new online auction houses are to blame for the rare whisky investment market’s ‘first “blip”’, according to Rare Whisky 101. During the six months Scotch whisky underperformed against other traditional investments including the FTSE 100 and gold.’

    ‘Rare Whisky 101, which tracks the value of rare Scotch through its Apex 1000 index, said the declining value of rare Macallan – the secondary market’s ‘most dominant’ distillery in volume and value – was also to blame for the dip.’

    ‘Andy Simpson, co-founder of Rare Whisky 101, said: ‘On the back of 10 subsequent years of growth in the investment performance of rare whisky, we have seen an oversupply of bottles, the continued proliferation of specialist whisky auction houses, and a record amount of money spent at auction all combine to produce the rare whisky investment market’s first ‘blip’ since we started reporting these results.’

    ‘However, collectors, investors and buyers would be well advised to note the dip. At this stage we do not believe it indicates the start of a longer-term downward trend.’

    ‘The whisky valuator noted that there are ‘ plenty of pockets of growth for those who do their research and time their market entry/exit well: as with all investments’.

    https://scotchwhisky.com/magazine/latest-news/27328/rare-scotch-investment-drops-for-first-time/

    1. Here Is Why Single Malt Whisky Is So Expensive Worldwide
      https://brobible.com/culture/article/why-single-malt-whisky-so-expensive/

      (snip)

      “When a lot of the product is being lost to evaporation this can create rarity in a product that’s already pretty darn rare. Add in the modern element of reviewers and critics who tell you X is better than Y because of Z, the competition of a global market, and suddenly you can see why the prices climb to tens of thousands of dollars. When a bottle used to be worth $500 to a captive audience but now you have whisky lovers worldwide bidding for it that price will go up astronomically.

      “Then there’s the ‘artificial inflation based on selective demand’ which is the simplest explanation, you are selling a high-end product to wealthy people who justify the price because they have bottomless bank accounts and this drives up the price for everyone.”

      1. When a lot of the product is being lost to evaporation this can create rarity

        Aged in the barrel reduces the alcohol content but doesn’t make any of it “rare”. Silly talk.

    1. Or maybe it’s that “rare collectibles” are appearing left and right. If your cellar is already full of bottles, will you buy any more?

  17. Some of the investors in WeWorks will probably drinking tonight since the IPO will raise only a third of what they thought a few months ago. I bet some people are getting nervous that just telling a good story is not enough anymore.

  18. https://www.cnbc.com/2019/09/13/reality-star-turned-fraudster-highlights-the-risks-of-house-flipping.html

    “But when he became overextended in 2014, Menaged turned to fraud, lying to banks and other lenders in order to keep up his empire — and pay for his lavish lifestyle. In a ghoulish turn, he even took out lines of credit in the names of dead borrowers, stealing their identities using Social Security death records.”

    FAKE NEWS – UMpossible … Airtight loaning standards!

  19. Are you buying stocks on the Slope of Hope?

    Stocks have ‘sufficient tailwind’ to climb higher, so keep buying, Credit Suisse advises
    By Barbara Kollmeyer
    Published: Sept 13, 2019 9:34 a.m. ET
    Critical information for the U.S. trading day
    Come and get ‘em.

    One even mildly bullish Friday 13th session could break some stock records.

    And why not, now that the European Central Bank has released the stimulus bazooka, the Fed is all but expected to cut rates next week and there’s more upbeat trade chatter. Incidentally, U.S-China trade hopes have added 2,000 points to the Dow in just a few weeks, notes Slope of Hope blogger Tim Knight.

  20. what recession….. https://www.crainsnewyork.com/real-estate/uber-sign-large-lease-world-trade-center

    Uber is close to signing a large lease to expand and relocate its New York headquarters to the World Trade Center.

    The ride hailing app is on the verge of completing a deal to take seven floors, totaling nearly 308,000 square feet, at 3 World Trade Center. The arrangement includes an option to expand onto an 8th floor, an addition that, if exercised, would bring its footprint to more than 350,000 square feet. Rents for the space are in the high $80s per square foot, a source said—a price that reflects the rising fortunes of the World Trade Center—

    1. It looks like GDP growth this quarter will be around 1.8 percent not great but above the 1.6 percent growth in Obama’s last year and above his average over eight years. A bad Trump quarter beats the Obama average. Shows how much better supply side economics works over demand side economics.

      1. I wonder if the supply side approach could work for housing?

        I notice that the Democrats like to choke supply through excessive regulation and growth constraints, drive demand skyward with the abolishment of lending standards, then moan endlessly about about unaffordable housing prices and the homelessness problem that results as a natural consequence.

        1. That is not what Scott Weiner has been trying to do for a couple of hears with SB 50. He has pushed hard to try and go after wealth, closed Democratic cities that refuse to allow much to be built by making regs and codes so restrictive.

    2. to me this is a vanity move….the subways are jammed packed daily, so unless uber time shift workers like start at 11-7 pm7-3 am 3-11 that many workers will not be very happy with commuting…..plus $85 sq foot yr times 300,00 is $25 million just for office space..

    1. Do these poway homes your looking at have HOAs and/or Mello Roos? Is it just for you / hubby / 1 kid? 5k sqft is huge! I get your able to swing over the 1031 so property taxes are low and I am sure you have done all your math but are these high end homes your looking at going to be sustainable for you over 30 years (assuming your acquiring a loan) calculating in possible loss of one working member salary? I’m a bit of a doom and gloomer and even though I could viably live in a place like this now, I worry about 10-15 years down the road if I was to lose or reduce my finances or the costs of maintaining and increases in monthly dues went beyond my given finances. I rather get something now that I could expand, upgrade, and have future growth vs something that immediately topped off my budget or means to repay. Ideally buying something “free and clear” minus the ongoing taxes, maintenance is what I am hoping for…

      1. The 1031 exchange requires that we buy something with equal liability and equity. The price point dictates house size. And yes, it’s just me, hubby and the one kid, who will not be moving out any time soon. Right now, I’m looking at homes with no or low HOA and no Mello-Roos. The mortgage will be at least $265K. With property taxes, the monthly amount will roughly equal what we pay in rent for a 2,400sf 4bd/2.5ba ranch home on 1.33 acres with little useable yard. Our current utility bills are outrageous because of poor insulation and watering all the fruit and nut trees. With solar, future utility bills should be manageable.

        Without the 1031 exchange, we’d be looking at a $600K mortgage and $300K cash for a dated 2,400sf 4bd/2.5 ranch home.

          1. Quite a change up from your previous 2. Looks similar to my grandparents home in La Jolla. I prefer modern personally but I get the attraction to homes that were built with pride and craftsmanship which most now are not

          2. That’s an odd neighborhood of mis-matched architecture and single family near multi-family, and the street has a double yellow line indicating a high traffic volume. A master-planned neighborhood would be my preference.

          1. have to get a palace

            Basically. And since the property is in a trust, we’re not sensitive to the SALT cap. It’s a no brainer. The decision to let go of my mom’s house has been the hardest part.

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