Author Topic: Housing/Mortgage/Real Estate  (Read 272740 times)

Crafty_Dog

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Geodesic domes
« Reply #750 on: November 07, 2023, 02:12:18 PM »
Haven't looked at the updated site yet, but years ago I had a fascination with geodesic domes.

These here seem wildly overpriced (perhaps IIRC because they are in NY?) but the concept continues to intrigue.

https://ekodome.com/about-us/



Crafty_Dog

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Re: Housing/Mortgage/Real Estate
« Reply #753 on: November 15, 2023, 11:20:49 AM »
A question to ask and answer:  What should they have been when he took office?  And what should they be now?


DougMacG

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Re: Housing/Mortgage/Real Estate
« Reply #754 on: November 15, 2023, 01:13:13 PM »
A question to ask and answer:  What should they have been when he took office?  And what should they be now?

No one knows the perfect rate, but I think we all can agree interest rates were way low for way too long.  Same people who were wrong then are in charge now, using the wrong tools to fix the same wrong problems.  So in addition to dealing with abruptly higher rates we also have a loss of confidence in the Fed and in the econom. Borrowing, lending and investing end without confidence.

During the time interest rates were too low I wrote on these pages, the economy has three flat tires and we are trying to fix it by putting a larger carburetor on it.  We created an additional time bomb while fixing nothing - and the chickens have come home to roost.

Inflation is too much money chasing too few goods.  Both sides of that are equally important. The Fed adjusts the money supply but no one (during the Obama Biden years) addresses the supply side except to add even more government impediments to production.

We are (still) spending 40% more than we take in. It caught up with us and runaway inflation resulted. Instead of addressing the known causes, the Fed raises interest rates to intentionally slow economic activity, consumption in particular. Former Sen. Fritz Hollings famously said some (decades ago) , "there's too much consumin' goin' on out there."  (That wasn't the problem then or now.)

But you can't smack down consumers with higher interest rates without also hitting producers with higher rates.  Ironically, fewer goods and services produced is a cause of inflation.

Were interest rates too low before, yes. Are interest rates too high now? Debatable. What will they be tomorrow? No one knows.

Uncertain future is the centerpiece of a third world economy.
« Last Edit: November 15, 2023, 07:00:12 PM by DougMacG »

Crafty_Dog

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Re: Housing/Mortgage/Real Estate
« Reply #755 on: November 15, 2023, 02:26:09 PM »
Yes.

How about a rule of thumb for the theoretical ideal of 3% above inflation?

DougMacG

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Re: Housing/Mortgage/Real Estate
« Reply #756 on: November 16, 2023, 07:27:13 AM »
Yes.

How about a rule of thumb for the theoretical ideal of 3% above inflation?

That's about right - for mortgage rates.

Problem is measuring the inflation rate - for the next 30 years.

Current interest rates (roughly) :
Mortgage 7.8
Credit card debt 24%. (Why is this so high?!)
Small business loans 9%?
Savings account interest. 0.58% (Why is this so low?!)
https://www.bankrate.com/banking/savings/average-savings-interest-rates/
T-bills 5%

Current inflation rate 3.2% per "nerdwallet".

If you believe that, mortgage rates should be closer to 6% instead of closer to 8.  To me, that
would be much closer to normal and far less disruptive to housing, to people and to the economy.

It is not the private sector that is mismanaging the budget, the dollar and the economy.

Like the oil shock of the 1970s, why does it all have to be so abrupt?

In sailing (or any other sport), you do not move from the wrong place to the right place on the boat as the wind and conditions change.  You move as needed to always be in the right place. Our spenders, controllers and regulators could learn something from that.
« Last Edit: November 16, 2023, 07:29:44 AM by DougMacG »

DougMacG

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Re: Housing/Mortgage/Real Estate
« Reply #757 on: November 21, 2023, 08:54:02 AM »
More doom and gloom.  They call it a prediction but isn't it already happening?
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Economist who predicted 2008 housing crash says commercial real estate bubble is about to burst
https://www.msn.com/en-us/money/realestate/economist-who-predicted-2008-housing-crash-says-commercial-real-estate-bubble-is-about-to-burst/ar-AA1kfmYd?ocid=hpmsn&cvid=79045948274248f58f7c304fa3b4cb1d&ei=31


Home Sales Fell to a New 13-Year Low in October
High prices and interest rates combine to cause purchases to plunge
https://www.wsj.com/economy/housing/october-2023-home-sales-fall-ec6b3164
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

(Doug)  At some point after sales plunge and real incomes drop and stagnate, don't prices plunge?  It's hard to say what could go right in this scenario, a spurt of economic growth in an anti-growth environment?  I don't see it.  When values plunge, loans default, commercial and residential.  When loans default, banks are in trouble.  And so on.

DougMacG

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Housing Bidenomics
« Reply #758 on: December 16, 2023, 07:56:13 AM »
https://www.cnn.com/2023/12/15/business/homelessness-highest-reported-level-rents-up/index.html

(Doug)  In a nutshell, we have literally thousands of laws, federal, state and local, against housing being affordable, and then we go "OMG!  I can't believe people are homeless!"

Their definition of "affordable" (cf. Affordable Care Act) is that someone else pays for it.  But what did Margaret thatcher say about socialism.  At some point you run out of other people's money.  We spend 40% more than we take in at the federal level, plus $4 trillion in quantitative expansion and still run out of money.  Maybe there's a better way...

ccp

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Re: Housing/Mortgage/Real Estate
« Reply #759 on: December 16, 2023, 08:31:43 AM »
from article above:

"The biggest numerical growth in people experiencing homelessness was among Latinos. There were 28% more Latinos who were unhoused in 2023 than the year prior. This population made up 55% of the total increase in US homelessness, with 39,106 additional Latinos without housing this year."

thanks Joe.
where did all these Latinos come from ?

ccp

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how can squatters get away with this?
« Reply #760 on: December 16, 2023, 01:12:56 PM »
https://nypost.com/2023/12/16/metro/li-squatters-abuse-the-system-to-stave-off-eviction-court-docs/

I am at a loss for words

as I cannot comprehend how this is possible.

Can't they have swat go in and throw them in jail?

DougMacG

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Mortgage demand still falling
« Reply #761 on: February 14, 2024, 06:53:23 AM »
https://confoundedinterest.net/2024/02/14/bidens-mortgage-market-mortgage-demand-down-2-3-from-last-week-purchase-demand-down-12-from-last-year-mortgage-rate-up-151-under-bidenomics/

Hey Krugman and the rest of the cherrypicking sycophants, is housing not part of the economy.?

What other parts of food, clothing, shelter don't they study at the Princeton school of partisan economics?

DougMacG

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Crafty_Dog

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Re: Housing/Mortgage/Real Estate
« Reply #763 on: February 27, 2024, 05:05:19 AM »
Simpleton question:  How can their both be a shortage and a bubble?

Body-by-Guinness

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Who You Gonna Call?
« Reply #764 on: March 13, 2024, 05:06:40 PM »
The squatter buster. This gent has made a business out of legally removing squatters from homes; states it’s a growing national crisis:

https://www.foxnews.com/media/handyman-turned-squatter-hunter-atlanta-squatter-crisis-terrorist-act-calls-national-guard

Crafty_Dog

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Re: Housing/Mortgage/Real Estate
« Reply #765 on: March 13, 2024, 05:12:23 PM »
Far out!


Crafty_Dog

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WSJ: Realtors stage a $418M tactical retreat
« Reply #767 on: March 20, 2024, 01:40:39 PM »
The Realtors Stage a $418 Million Tactical Retreat
The NAR’s ballyhooed legal settlement is less than meets the hype.
By The Editorial Board
March 19, 2024 4:57 pm ET

The press is heralding the settlement announced Friday by the National Association of Realtors (NAR) as a revolution in what brokers charge to sell homes. Don’t be so sure. On closer inspection, the settlement appears to help the Realtors get out of a legal jam more than it helps home buyers.


The jam is the jury verdict last autumn in a class action by Missouri home sellers (Burnett v. NAR) that resulted in a $1.8 billion judgment against the Realtors for price-fixing. The plaintiffs alleged that the NAR violated the Sherman Act in part by requiring seller agents to provide a blanket offer of compensation to a buyer’s broker in order to list a home on NAR’s affiliated multiple-listing services (MLS).

This rule is one reason Realtor commissions have averaged between 5.5% and 6% for decades, split evenly between buyer and seller agents. Overall commissions are substantially lower in most developed countries, including the U.K. (1.3% average fee), Norway (1.8%), Netherlands (2%) and Australia (2.5%). Few buyers outside the U.S. even use brokers.

Many buyers these days search for homes online. Yet buyer agents earn a 2.5% to 3% commission no matter how little or how much they help their client. They also have no incentive to obtain the best deal for their client because they pocket larger commissions on higher-priced homes.

Empirical evidence also shows that buyer brokers steer clients away from homes whose sellers paid them less than 2.5% to 3%. Ninety percent of transactions on the Missouri MLSs offered buyer agents exactly 3%. The NAR claimed its policies benefit consumers, but the jury disagreed.

After the Missouri verdict, dozens of other class-action suits hit NAR across the country. Plaintiff attorneys and the NAR appear to have settled the suits on a nationwide basis for practical reasons. Plaintiffs knew they couldn’t squeeze more money out of the NAR, which had only $1 billion in assets as of 2022. The NAR wanted to live to fight another day, and it smells victory in this tactical retreat.

“Two critical achievements of this resolution are the release of most NAR members and many industry stakeholders from liability in these matters and the fact that cooperative compensation remains a choice for consumers when buying or selling a home,” the NAR said in a statement. “Cooperative compensation” is the cartel’s code for the seller paying the buyer broker.

Under the settlement, the NAR will pay $418 million over roughly four years. It has also agreed to bar seller agents from advertising a blanket offer of compensation to buyer agents on an MLS. But the settlement notably doesn’t bar seller agents from advertising buyer broker commissions on other home-selling platforms, including those operated by its members. Nor does it forbid buyer brokers from steering clients away from homes whose sellers pay lower or no commissions.

This may not be the end of the legal challenges to the NAR business model, and it shouldn’t be. The Justice Department last month objected to a similar rule change in a different settlement between home sellers and a regional MLS. Justice said that settlement “makes cosmetic changes” that will perpetuate “stubbornly high broker fees” because it “still gives sellers and their listing brokers a role in setting compensation for buyers’ brokers.”

Justice could still intervene to stop last week's ballyhooed settlement. since collusion may be less obvious but still exist in many markets. The savings for consumers may be far less than meets the media hype. There’s a reason the NAR boasted in a statement that Friday’s settlement will “protect our members to the greatest extent possible.”

The Realtors have prospered for decades from a rigged game that pads their pockets at the expense of consumers. They have then parlayed those profits into lobbying to preserve and expand government subsidies for housing. Whenever these columns pointed out the truth, the Realtors reacted with outrage, as if their commissions are a birthright.

The jury verdict and settlement prove the critics were right. Legal scrutiny should continue until there is a genuine free market in the buying and selling of homes.

DougMacG

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Crafty_Dog

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AL squatters's rights
« Reply #769 on: March 24, 2024, 06:16:02 AM »

DougMacG

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Housing, Mortgage unaffordable
« Reply #770 on: April 03, 2024, 06:47:10 AM »
If not mentioned in the article, housing insurance also going crazy. Property taxes up 10 fold since I've been here.

Just like the war on poverty, everything the government has tried to make more "affordable" has instead made it more subsidized, making it less affordable for everyone not getting it paid for by the government, cf. college costs, health care, and of course housing.

So, you can't buy housing because of the high cost and you can't sell housing you don't want because of the punitive tax on inflation. Exact opposite of what economists call a free market. Other than that it's all going swimmingly.

https://confoundedinterest.net/2024/04/03/bidenomics-is-on-the-highway-to-hell-for-housing-affordability-mortgage-demand-applications-down-13-from-last-year-while-home-prices-are-up-39-2-under-biden-and-powell/
« Last Edit: April 03, 2024, 07:05:20 AM by DougMacG »

DougMacG

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Government overreach in Housing, real estate
« Reply #771 on: April 08, 2024, 11:26:17 AM »
https://reason.com/volokh/2024/04/07/new-nber-study-finds-covid-eviction-moratoria-increased-racial-discrimination/

I can say landlords left places empty when government took away all ability to enforce a contract.  I called the policy 'third world' at the time.

Turns out the misguided policy hurt the people it was intended to help.

Always does.

DougMacG

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Housing costs, new home
« Reply #772 on: April 15, 2024, 11:29:15 AM »
According to CBRE data, the average monthly payments on a new home soared to $3,322 in the third quarter of 2023. This marks a sharp 90% increase from late 2020, when it stood at just $1,746 before Biden took office. Rising rent and the end of pandemic-era protections are contributing to the homelessness crisis.

DougMacG

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Mortgage/Commercial Real Estate, Everything's fine
« Reply #773 on: April 19, 2024, 05:15:55 AM »
https://www.foxbusiness.com/economy/commercial-real-estate-foreclosures-jumped-march-trouble-looms

Foreclosures up 117%.

The banks can just find another buyer. Oh wait, if there was another buyer it wouldn't have gone into foreclosure.

Last foreclosure crisis I bought homes for 15 cents on the dollar of previous sale. That was for homes. People need homes. People don't need office buildings.

Not enough new businesses starting up and growing into successes is a hard thing to measure, until all commercial real estate is vacant. Then you start to see it.

Of the last 16 years counting this year, 13 were either under either Obama, Biden or Covid. Of the three remaining Trump years, 2 were under the Russian collusion delusion and then Pelosi retook the House.  The private sector has had a hard run, masked by markets doing okay as 5 or 6 huge companies took all the business. But apparently Google, Apple and Amazon don't want or need your local office building.

What do the construction workers and construction firms that build office buildings do when 30% of the existing ones are vacant. Build more? Why? With whose money? Maybe they can learn to code.
« Last Edit: April 19, 2024, 05:47:30 AM by DougMacG »

Crafty_Dog

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Re: Housing/Mortgage/Real Estate
« Reply #774 on: April 19, 2024, 08:52:43 AM »
Important measuring sticks there.

Saw an article yesterday that RE prices in Humbolt County CA (pot cultivation territory) have crashed.  If someone buys, there are responsible for the tax liens pending.

DougMacG

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DougMacG

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Housing value and school district, correlation or causation?
« Reply #776 on: April 22, 2024, 09:05:23 AM »
"The average U.S. home value is $353,748 while the average for the best district in every state is 86% higher at $651,662, the study said."
https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/personalfinance/2024/04/22/states-home-price-premiums-top-public-schools/73377109007/?tbref=hp

There are so many implications to this, time permitting I'd like to dive deeper on the education side of it.

Expensive neighborhoods are more likely to have intact families, two parents of higher intelligence and achievement, and kids advantaged by both nature and nurture.  The lower end schools and neighborhoods tend to have the opposite.

They say for investment value, buy the lowest priced house in the best neighborhood. I did. A lot of good came out of that, my daughter went to the best public schools, value went up 10-fold (over a long period, ttime flies).  Taxes also went up 10-fold (but the house is still what builders call 'teardown') so now I can't rebuild because taxes would then be up 20-fold.

I wish it was the humble community it once was.

And now the good public schools are getting worse with wokeness etc.

DougMacG

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Housing/Real Estate, Mortgage Purchase demand down 57% under Biden
« Reply #777 on: May 08, 2024, 05:50:29 AM »
https://confoundedinterest.net/2024/05/08/thats-bidenomics-us-mortgage-purchase-demand-applications-rise-2-over-past-week-but-remain-down-17-since-last-year-and-down-57-under-biden/
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(Doug)  Housing is now unaffordable.  Try spinning that in a positive way.  People can't sell.  People can't buy. Higher interest rates are only part of it.  The people who need housing the most don't have full time jobs. 

But mostly, the nation's most highly taxed and highly regulated industry is dysfunctional. Who could have seen this coming?  What is the plan to fix it?  There is no plan to fix it. 

This is a good example of why the majority have no confidence in this President to manage the economy.  Much of the problem comes from blue cities and blue state's having bad policies, but the the leadership stinks from the head.

Shortage of houses?  I have empty houses I would happily trade for cash.  But not if a third or half the proceeds go to the government on a "capital gain" that is really just inflation.

My property taxes cumulatively are now at roughly twice what I paid for the home. How much of that goes to DEI and wasteful social programs and how much goes to finance funding of essential government, roads and classrooms?  It all goes to making housing more expensive, less affordable.
----------
Here's more:
https://www.cnn.com/2024/05/08/investing/premarket-stocks-trading/index.html

"For US renters, the chance of owning a home is going from bad to worse."

Mortgage rates over 7.2%, going to 9%, then going over 10%.
This is CNN.

(Doug) A lesson from history, Jimmy Carter had one term only.

Second lesson from history.  Voters gave Reagan a Democrat House, and the recession that followed inflation was painful.  Don't do that with Trump 2024 if you want policies and solutions.

Rent is also getting less affordable. The CNN article goes on to say or imply, my words, the worst this gets the more government will do to make it worse yet.
« Last Edit: May 08, 2024, 07:07:15 AM by DougMacG »

DougMacG

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Housing/Mortgage/Real Estate, Expand the mission of Fannie Mae??
« Reply #778 on: May 16, 2024, 08:24:24 AM »
Biden’s Election-Eve $2 Trillion Stimulus Scheme   (CTUP Newsletter, Steve Moore)

The White House is getting desperate. We noted earlier this week that Joe is airdropping tens of billions of dollars of pork spending into toss-up states.

But that’s chump change compared to the latest stimulus scheme.

The Biden administration wants the federal government via Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to provide taxpayer backing for home equity loans. Talk about mission creep. These agencies are supposed to support homeownership – not juice consumer spending.

Home equity loans — or second mortgages — use the equity in the home as collateral for quick cash. We have nothing against them. But how in the world is this in the interests of taxpayers?

It isn’t.

It’s especially inappropriate at a time when Americans are already over-leveraged up to their eyebrows. Have the Biden brainiacs looked at the record-high credit card debt of over $1 trillion? Overall total household borrowing has reached an all-time $17 trillion. The last thing the feds should be doing is encouraging more debt.

Crafty_Dog

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Re: Housing/Mortgage/Real Estate
« Reply #779 on: May 16, 2024, 09:15:26 AM »
 :-o :-o :-o :x :x :x

DougMacG

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Gimme Government Shelter
« Reply #780 on: May 19, 2024, 07:58:31 AM »
Housing, Healthcare and College Costs.  Tell me what the government has taken over with subsidies and control, squeezed out the profits, and costs went down.

https://www.city-journal.org/article/gimme-government-shelter

They didn't just destroy the market, they destroyed our language.  Affordable now means subsidy required (unaffordable).  Lower cost means costs twice as much.  Smart growth means stupid.

"Without a major shift in thinking, the result will be billions more dollars squandered—and a housing crisis still unsolved."

DougMacG

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Housing/Mortgage: Monthly Payments Roughly Doubled in the Last 4 Years
« Reply #781 on: May 29, 2024, 08:18:01 AM »
https://www.bbc.com/news/articles/cmj66r4lvzzo    Excerpts:

"The median home sale price in the US has jumped by nearly 30% since the end of 2019, hitting $420,000 this spring."

"And that's not factoring in the added costs from higher interest rates, which now stand at roughly 7% for the 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage that is typical in the US, up from about 3% in 2020."

"Homebuyers today need an annual income of more than $100,000 - well above the country's household median of about $75,000 - to comfortably afford a home in most places in the US, research firms such as Zillow and Bankrate say, and face monthly payments that have roughly doubled in just four years."

"Just 40.1% of renters expect to ever own a home one day, according to the New York Federal Reserve, the smallest share since the bank started asking renters the question in 2014."

"Nearly one third of all households now spend more than a third of their income on housing - the standard cut-off for affordability - the highest level since 2015, according to Harvard's Joint Center for Housing Studies."

"A recent Harris poll found more than 70% of Americans believe the market is only going to get worse."

"Inflation has been a political noose for Biden in recent years," says Brian Connolly, professor of business law at the University of Michigan's Ross School of Business, whose work focuses on housing issues. "Housing costs are another place where people are experiencing this financial squeeze."

"With more people priced out of homeownership, rental rates may prove more resilient than expected, keeping inflation elevated."

"No matter what happens - whether they raise, lower or hold them - I feel as though the next decade is probably just going to be difficult no matter what for most people," he says. [Senior economist at Zillow]
-----------------------------------------------------
[Doug] They say housing prices are up.  I say, value of the dollar is down.

DougMacG

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housing market existential threat to the middle class
« Reply #782 on: Today at 06:56:38 AM »
https://fortune.com/2024/06/16/housing-market-crisis-impossibly-unaffordable-cities-california-feudalizing-land-home-prices/

It probably didn't take a new study to know this.

Priced out of some markets, in California and elsewhere, middle class will have to go somewhere else.

Question remains, who works the jobs in the communities that have priced out the lower and middle class? Where will the teachers and nurses live, and plumbers and electricians and so on.

At least the homeless will always have a place to live. (Insert photo of homeless encampment blocking sidewalk). And more secure income than the lower middle working class.

DougMacG

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Foreclosures Up, NO ONE could have seen this coming
« Reply #783 on: Today at 07:40:49 AM »
https://www.foxbusiness.com/economy/home-foreclosures-rise-again-nationwide

(Doug)  Frankly, they aren't up very much but it's sure to get worse.

"Housing affordability worst in decades", worst since carter-obama-biden's first term in the late 1970s.

Umm, what happens when you can't afford your house?
« Last Edit: Today at 07:47:47 AM by DougMacG »