2009 FHA loan limits were released on Wednesday. The limits for high-cost San Francisco: one-family – $729,750; two-family – $934,200; three-family – $1,129,250; four-family – $1,402,400.
FHA Mortgage Limits [hud.gov]

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Comments from “Plugged-In” Readers

  1. Posted by Confused

    How about explaining what your headline means instead of just posting a link to some random loan calculator. I see nothing about down payments in either of those links.
    [Editor’s Note: Sorry, a good place to start for those who are unfamiliar with FHA loans: The FHA Resource Center.]

  2. Posted by gowiththeflow

    Any idea when the banks will implement this?

  3. Posted by tipster

    FHA=3.5% down for 2009. I get 25,541.25 on that loan amount.
    [Editor’s Note: You beat us to it but since corrected (we forgot the .5% addition for 2009).]

  4. Posted by Debtpocalypse

    Who on earth – or in this nation – qualifies for such an outrageous loan?

  5. Posted by anonn

    3.5% down on a 3-unit can get you a 1,129,250 loan? What about equivalent equity instead of monies down?

  6. Posted by Debtpocalypse

    So, let’s encourage 28:1 leverage!
    How’s that gearing working out for the planet’s banks?
    But the qualification guidelines are very, very, very stringent. For example, you better not have declared bankruptcy in the past two years, or been foreclosed in the last three years:
    …………………………..
    FHA loans are the easiest type of real estate mortgage loan to qualify for. The FHA guidelines for loan qualification are the most flexible of all mortgage loans that require less than 5% down payment.
    Following is the basic FHA loan qualification guidelines.
    Two Years of steady employment, preferably with same employer.
    Last two years Income should be the same or increasing.
    Credit report should typically have less than two thirty day lates in last two years with a minimum credit score of 580 or higher or no credit score at all.
    Bankruptcy’s must be at least two years old, with perfect credit since discharge.
    Foreclosure’s must be at least three years old, with perfect credit since.
    Your new mortgage payment should be approximately 30% of your gross (before taxes) income.
    These are some of the most basic of FHA guidelines for qualifying for a FHA loan.
    If you have answered yes to most of these statements, you probably qualify for a FHA mortgage loan.

    http://www.fha-home-loans.com/loan_qualifying_fha_loans.htm
    Clearly, I am missing something.

  7. Posted by Trip

    You also need to obtain PMI with less than 20% down (I think this is not exactly “private” but at the same cost, through FHA). I’ve heard that FHA is not a significant player in SF. Anyone know if that is true? Perhaps because once the qualification requirements and PMI costs are all factored in, the deal is really not much different from any other lender’s offerings?

  8. Posted by SF Banker

    You have to be on drugs (or a stupid as the feds) to loan someone money on those terms. Why does Washington continue its campaign to pump up housing values to completely unrealistic levels? Quite an “Obamanation”

  9. Posted by San FronziScheme

    Before this crisis, if you fogged a mirror you could get financing – O down, NEG-AM
    Now the FHA says: you have to fog a mirror AND be capable of flipping an eyelid 3 times in the past month to get the ticket to your next foreclosure.
    Ridiculous. They’ll never learn.

  10. Posted by Lance

    “You have to be on drugs (or a stupid as the feds) to loan someone money on those terms. Why does Washington continue its campaign to pump up housing values to completely unrealistic levels? Quite an “Obamanation”
    I think the prior administration were the ones that were clearly stupid and/or on drugs. The job of the government now should be on providing some stability to the financial and RE markets. You can argue that both of these two markets are broken and their worth is over-valued all you want…I actually might agree with you. Given what we’re dealing with however, the first job of government should be on stopping the bleeding. This is about triage man! I say hats off to Obama and the rest of his administration for cleaning up this mess that he inherited. This is a smart move IMO.

  11. Posted by San FronziScheme

    Lance, the patient is not bleeding but has a congestive heart condition.
    Feeding him more fat will solve anything. What will work is do a lipo (mark to market bad debt), then a huge tummy tuck (shut down losing banks) while on life support (FDIC recevership) and put the patient on a strict diet (decent interest rate) with a minimum exercise (20% down).
    But nobody wants to diet. People are lazy.

  12. Posted by MikeW

    From Data Quick recent release:
    In January, use of FHA, government-insured mortgages allowing a down payment of as little as 3 percent rose to nearly 25 percent of Bay Area home purchase loans. That’s a record in DataQuick’s statistics and is up from less than 1.0 percent a year ago. At the same time, use of larger mortgages known as “jumbo loans,” common in higher-cost coastal neighborhoods, continued to fall. Before the credit crunch hit in August 2007, 62 percent of Bay Area sales were financed with jumbos, then defined as over $417,000. Last month just 16.6 percent of purchase loans were over $417,000.

  13. Posted by LMRiM

    Keep singin it, Lance. With all respect, I recall your posts very well from last year, and you clearly didn’t grasp the nature of what was actually happening, and again with respect I think you are missing it again.
    This is not a question of one administration versus another. The banksters have been calling the shots since the early 1980s; Bush and Obama (and Clinton, too) were all just mouthpieces for their interests.
    You can talk tech all you want in the Bay Area, but the real geniuses over the past few decades have been the Wall Street cartel. They always knew that when TSHTF, the taxpayer would be there to absorb the losses, and that the larger they grew (in collusion with the USG, which wanted the tax revenue and the popularity that goes along with imaginary wealth), the larger the cries would be that government needs to “do something” to maintain “social cohesion”. You really have to marvel at the banksters.
    About “regulation”, Europe had plenty of that. I bet Europe blows up even worse than the US as this unfolds. This wasn’t a problem of regulation. This was a problem of a small elite trying to control an economy through interest rates and planning and regulatory tinkering. The free market is fighting back, and it desires a depression to clear out the malinvestment. The harder it is resisted, the worse the bust is going to be IMHO.

  14. Posted by ex SF-er

    Your new mortgage payment should be approximately 30% of your gross (before taxes) income.
    is this in there? If so, it will severely restrict who this program will help.
    Let’s say that you can get an FHA loan for the FULL AMOUNT of the mortgage without PMI, at an interest rate of 5%. (this is extraordinarily unlikely, but I don’t know current rates for Jumbo FHA loans).
    30 year fixed on $704,209 mortgage
    (buyer puts down the above mentioned $25.5k)
    97% mortgage
    I am NOT calculating PMI or a second mortgage
    Principal plus interest: $3780/mo
    tax (if 1.1%/year): $670/mo
    Insurance: ???
    that’s at least $4450/month.
    if this has to be less than 30% of your income:
    then you must make:
    4450 / 0.3 = 14833/mo
    which is $178,000/year.
    so this loan program will help a person who makes $178,000/year buy a house worth $729k with a $25k down payment. and that’s using EXTREMELY generous assumptions. It is likely that the mortgage payment will be much higher than my math above, which makes the borrower income requirement much higher as well.
    it’s not enough. How many people making $178k/year want houses in SF you can buy for $729k?
    sure, they can use that loan to buy a million dollar house, but then they gotta put down $275k.
    again, unlikely.
    this is a big nothingburger for the most part IMO.
    that is ASSUMING the 30% rule stays in there. we’ve already seen that the govt is slobbering all over itself to give money away to people so they can consume things they can’t afford, so I wouldn’t be surprised to see that rule dropped.
    unless this is just the govt trying to look like they’re doing something, when they’re really not. also quite likely.
    this program is a drop in an ocean IMO.

  15. Posted by ex SF-er

    to word a different way:
    Real Estate shot into the stratosphere because of loan products that CAN NEVER BE DUPLICATED again.
    Option ARMS allowed mortgage payments (initially) to be less than the interest owed!
    Liar Loans allowed people to bid on properties using money they never had.
    And yes, this happened in SF as well.
    you take away those loans, you take away “demand.”
    the only way to get back to “the good old days” is to bring back the Option ARMs and Liar Loans
    all these other loans pale in comparison.
    even “worse”, no matter how many of the Option/Liar loans you bring back, it still won’t help because the psychology has changed. You don’t hear the tired old vapid arguments of “RE never goes down” or “they’re not making any more land” anymore, because they have both been proven to be rediculously wrong. hard to re-jumpstart that insanity train.
    If the US wants to really stop these foreclosures they have the tools to do it
    -mandated foreclosure moratoriums
    -cram downs through the BK process
    -principal reduction programs
    too bad those will tank our banking system and kill any future mortgage market for decades.
    we gotta pick our poison. I’ve already said what I think needs to be done many times. too bad they’ll never do it. we’ll all suffer because of it.

  16. Posted by gowiththeflow

    “But nobody wants to diet. People are lazy.”
    San Fronzi completely agree and not just relative to this thread but the HCare thread, and just about everything these days.
    I am for anything that helps the masses, ritch, poor, middle, everyone. However, I have a huge problem with the fact our country has turned for the most part into a country that expects, demands, overconsumes, and is lazy. I love the US but people no longer want to work for things, they want free hand outs.
    There needs to be a trade off and our country needs to stop thinking we are owed everything.
    ——————
    “it’s not enough. How many people making $178k/year want houses in SF you can buy for $729k? sure, they can use that loan to buy a million dollar house, but then they gotta put down $275k.”
    This is exactly what is being required on most the new props these days believe it or not.. 1mil or so prop 20-25% down. Not sure how people are doing it but they are.
    ————–
    FHA – Actually asked about this (just out of curiosity not to obtain an FHA product) when buying in one of the new condo devs past handful of months. I was told that because the property was new it would require full submittal and approval to the FHA to deem the building as a qualified property. I am not sure what getting qualified entailed or if the bank was just paying me lip service in regards to making the process seem more difficult because they wanted to steer clear of it all but I found it interesting.

  17. Posted by Jake

    ex-SF-er, when did liar loans, option ARMS, etc., (basically the loans that you say contributed to the run up in SF prices) begin? I’m asking because I’m a bit too young to know, not because I doubt you. There was a run up in the late 90’s for example, during the dot-com era, were these loans readily available and partially responsible for the run up in prices at that time? thx.

  18. Posted by ex SF-er

    Option ARMs and “Liar Loans” (stated income stated assets/no income no assets) have been around for a long, long time, but they were used infrequently (This is exactly what is being required on most the new props these days believe it or not.. 1mil or so prop 20-25% down. Not sure how people are doing it but they are.
    yes, I know. But note how many transactions are happening. Very few. (I’m not saying that NOBODY who makes $170k wants to live in a $729k SF place, just that FEW want to).
    Like I said, if the 30% rule is held, this program is essentially a nothing burger. A drop of water on a desert.
    we’ll need far more than this to re-jump start the RE markets.

  19. Posted by viewlover

    I don’t know where there is any indication that Americans are lazy. The last reports I’ve seen showed that Americans have the least leisure time of any other country. It’s not that we are lazy, we just have a big gap between the wages of the lower tiers and the higher ones. I don’t disagree with most of the comments here, but laziness is not part of the problem.

  20. Posted by The Milkshake of Despair

    “The last reports I’ve seen showed that Americans have the least leisure time of any other country”
    Perhaps compared to Europe, but not against Japan.
    And definitely not compared against the developing world where long days and 7 day work weeks are common.

  21. Posted by anonn

    Compared with Spain? I doubt it.

  22. Posted by gowiththeflow

    I am not necessarily talking about lazy in terms of how many hours one works, sit’s at a desk etc.
    I am speaking in terms of lazy being if things don’t go our way, fall in our laps, are provided on a silver platter most Americans complain all the while wanting all the leg work done for them.
    In addition these day’s it seems a majority of Americans who do get what they want, don’t always think about giving back. There is a lack of respect, being thankful, and giving in return. I just feel like the give a little to get a little theory here has fallen by the wayside. Of course I don’t blame anyone for the shift. It seems lately that if you buy into the do unto others as you… in most cases you get squashed by those willing to run you over with out thinking twice. I don’t expect it to change but it is a little sad. I see it getting worse and expect it to get much worse as the economy continues to dip. This is when everyone should band together but instead people look for others to blame and shun. In the current state it is the wealthy. I am not wealthy but don’t look to blame those that are. We all contributed to the mess in one way or another so the gov should just let the cards fall and move on; get us back to square one quicker.
    I am not against what Obama is doing but I think it should include all income brackets if they plan to tinker at all. I guess this would be against the political grain; very unfortunate.

  23. Posted by ex SF-er

    I am not against what Obama is doing but I think it should include all income brackets if they plan to tinker at all.
    gowiththeflow:
    the lower income brackets are being targeted by Obama and Bush’s plans because they are more likely to spend their windfall (or pay down their debts)
    If you give a person who makes $10k/year a $400 check, they will likely spend it (which gives a boost to the economy)
    if you give a person who makes $100k/year a $400 check, they are less likely to spend it.
    in addition, those at the lower income brackets are more likely to be the “cause” of the downturn. They are defaulting on their debt obligations. Thus, giving them money helps them pay their debt, which may stop the spiralling defaults. this doesn’t occur as much with the affluent.
    there are people who say “well, if you give a millionaire an extra few thousand, then they’ll invest it”.
    however that isn’t necessarily true in this environment. in this environment the affluent are afraid to invest, so instead they hoard it in “nonproductive” areas (like Treasuries, Checking Accounts, Cash, etc).
    FWIW: I am basically against most all of what the govt has done the last 18 months, and I am in the highest income bracket so I benefit 0 from all this. I’m just stating the rationale behind the lower brackets getting the stimulus and not the higher brackets.
    If I got a stimulus, I would not spend a dime of it. I would keep it in cash or possibly invest it in things like Commodities or even Treasuries… I have no debt to pay down. thus giving me a stimulus is great for me, but adds no “value” to our GDP.

  24. Posted by viewlover

    http://archives.cnn.com/2001/CAREER/trends/08/30/ilo.study/
    This report states we work the most. Granted it’s a little old but why would it have changed other than lack of employement.

  25. Posted by viewlover

    in addition, those at the lower income brackets are more likely to be the “cause” of the downturn. They are defaulting on their debt obligations. Thus, giving them money helps them pay their debt, which may stop the spiralling defaults. this doesn’t occur as much with the affluent.
    Come ex-sfer, those with alot of income took their tax deductions and instead of investing speculated. I believe they are more to blame for the mess we are in rather than the low income population. I doubt many low income people do business on Wall Street.

  26. Posted by gowiththeflow

    Ex-Sf-er – yes I understand your points but overall don’t agree with creating a solution for an Atypical scenario that only helps a portion of our nations individuals.
    Obviously we need to do something or it will hurt us all more than it has; unfortunately that means bailing individuals out.
    I just think it would be nice if the gov is going to tinker vs. letting the cards fall, that they give every American at least a little something being we all are going to have to pay for it long term. Some should get more than others, fine but to exclude a group of people from it all, to punish them for prospering is wrong in my book.
    The nice thing about our country is that we are not all the same; if I wanted to be part of a socialized nation I would move over seas.
    Given I don’t get a W2 my plan is to give the same amount I normally would to charity but work less, why work more when it is just going to be taken and I can’t utilize the same bennies they are using my tax $ for because of the fact I make more on paper.
    I happen to fall in that hazy category of making decent $ but really for SF it is only middle income, most likely less. I don’t/ can’t live large but am taxed as if I do. I can’t imagine what my taxes would be if I was a W2. I expect many people in SF are in the same boat especially given there are a lot of entrepreneurs, and freelance /consultants in town. I am not whining about it, I choose to live here, I don’t expect hand outs and am happy to work for what I want BUT it would be nice to be included for now, as part of the a-typical special treatment group. I can day dream right. My thoughts are no different than Jackie Sp submitting her proposal to include increased conforming limits in the new housing stimulus plan vs. leaving a large bulk of CA homeowners out in the cold.
    I suppose I think that in extra special circumstances like we are ALL in now that if I am excluded why try. If I felt included even just a little bit I would be willing to continue doing more. If we are not careful we are going to put the brakes on the growth of our country, limitations with equality/unions is why GM can’t compete. I am for the fairness a union brings but at some point it can’t be so one sided of a way to function or it kills momentum. There has to be a middle ground.
    As a side bar I can also say that if mort int deduct is wiped out, I may in fact become a renter for life as may others which is not going to help the CA or SF RE market.

  27. Posted by gowiththeflow

    Is it possible that it was Wall Street AND Subprime borrowers, AND the banksters, and the speculators AND fraudsters, AND the ponzi schemers that caused the mess vs. just one group of individuals. The perfect storm for disaster, thankfully and hopefully a once in a 3/4 century event.

  28. Posted by Confused

    Editor: sorry if I came across as a dick this morning. I just re-read my post. Seems a little curt.
    Love the site. Thanks!

  29. Posted by ex SF-er

    Come ex-sfer, those with alot of income took their tax deductions and instead of investing speculated. I believe they are more to blame for the mess we are in rather than the low income population. I doubt many low income people do business on Wall Street.
    viewlover:
    please reread what I wrote.
    I put the word “cause” in quotation marks for a reason. the above mentioned post isn’t how I think, it’s how our government (which is evidently run by bankers) is framing the problem.
    they believe it’s only a problem of the masses defaulting on their obligations. They think that all we need to do is stop the foreclosure issue and this will all go away. They think we just have to get things back to “normal” (which in their-speak means back to bubble-land). we just have to be more optimistic and “restore confidence”
    thus, they point the stimulus towards the cause of the problem, the unwashed masses.
    If you’ve read my posts for any period of time you’d understand that I don’t believe any of that tripe. I’m only speaking for why they’re focusing the stimulus on the lower socioeconomic classes
    (and FWIW: as far as I understand it, and I may understand it incorrectly, it really is only the highest income earners who aren’t getting anything… those making more than $200k or so per year)
    and as I’ve said countless times, the government is doing all the wrong things. LMRiM in his jaded outlook thinks that government by definition can only do the wrong thing. but he is wrong.
    to recap some of my ideas of what needs be done:
    we should not do these stimuli. instead we should
    -create a central clearing house for all CDS contracts
    -raise a bunch of money for basic human survival aid after the impending crash
    -allow insolvent banks to fail. Most likely this will be every major bank in the world. perhaps one or two will survive but I doubt it.
    -once they fail, use the money we have to create new banks (or nationalize old ones) to restart commerce
    -use the money we have for basic human needs since there will be much suffering. (once the banks fail so will most all insurers and pension funds. we will have instant worldwide depression).
    -enact Glass Steagal style regulations again and enforce them going forward.
    -specifically: severely curtail off balance sheet entities and out of control leverage in our banking sector
    -in addition, abolish fractional reserve lending (or reduce it significantly)
    -Gold standard doesn’t matter as much to me, although I’m sure many like LMRiM would require this
    too bad our govt won’t do the needed things.
    instead they will throw hundreds of billions (and even trillions) of dollars away to the bankers so that they can continue to have fat bonuses. And they will give people tax credits to buy houses. And they will do foreclosure moratoriums. and soon they’ll probably change accounting rules to hide the problem. and so on.
    a pity really.

  30. Posted by REpornaddict

    MikW,
    do you know if those dataquick numbers (presumably they are for the MSA) are available at a county level also?

  31. Posted by viewlover

    Actually I don’t agree with what you state the gov’t thinks. In my mind there is no concensus on what needs to be done much less a method to to the madness, that are all of these actions by the government. These are more acts of desperation in an attempt to steer away from total financial collapse as opposed to puppeteering by a unified banking “they”, imo.
    Also the corrective actions you mention are impossible to implement entirely. Only a few if any of your suggestions will get attention, and those that do will be compromised by the time they are enacted to resemble nothing like the original idea.
    Ultimately, the markets sort this out, this should be clear already given the contraction of the economy and the performance of the markets, in spite of all the interventions. We’ll linger on for a while until the consumer ultimately starts to have confidence again, and starts spending the money that is being saved right now. Which in my mind is really those in Washington are ultimately attempting to do, second to staying in power.

  32. Posted by sfrob

    so exSFer – you’re saying the bread lines for the masses are coming ala The Great D?

  33. Posted by OhGawdFoMoYrs

    “I say hats off to Obama and the rest of his administration for cleaning up this mess that he inherited. This is a smart move IMO.” = Democrat = communist = Obama
    Poster child of the typical blind, brainwashed Obamerican … with all due respect, of course.
    —————————-
    “our country has turned for the most part into a country that expects, demands, overconsumes, and is lazy. I love the US but people no longer want to work for things, they want free hand outs.”
    “but to exclude a group of people from it all, to punish them for prospering is wrong in my book.”
    I couldn’t agree more. I stand to benefit zero, zilch, nuttin’, nada from any of “The Chosen One’s” supposed plans.  This country has been taught by Obamerica to NOT want to WORK and to EXPECT handouts, since he clearly is so readily willing to play the part of Peter Pan.  Little do the peasants know that when you punish “the rich,” the rich also has the ability to taketh away what they have giveth to your sorry asses, as in taking away your job because they’ve had the bejeezus taxed out of them and they can no longer afford you.  Simply because one makes less money, no matter how much less, what gives ANYONE the right to demand that others must “pay” or “owe” someone who makes less money?  Gee, do you think the guy making the truckload of money just sat on his lazy ass, and the money just fell into his lap?  Perhaps if you’re a fraud like Madoff, but generally, I think not.  “The rich” work damn hard for their money.  Why don’t you try doing the same and not be social parasites who expect handouts.  Have some self respect.
    But, hey, most of y’all voted for Obamerica.  You’ll all get the handouts that are coming and all the repercussions that go along with them, and when that time comes, I’ll smugly say, “I told you so.”

  34. Posted by ex SF-er

    Actually I don’t agree with what you state the gov’t thinks
    although I agree that the govt in general is far from cohesive, you must admit that common recurring themes are
    -we have to get things back to “normal”
    -we have to stop foreclosures
    -we have to get banks lending again
    -in order to do this we have to save the banking sector
    Most of the actions so far have been
    -stimuli
    -bank bailouts
    -talk of changing accounting rules
    -under a veil of secrecy (despite many FOIA requests from economists and also newspapers)
    it fits with what I wrote above.
    These are more acts of desperation in an attempt to steer away from total financial collapse as opposed to puppeteering by a unified banking “they”, imo.
    perhaps. however, I’m not really saying that the bankers are unified. what I’m saying is that almost all of the things being tried are those things proposed by the bankers.
    Greenspan
    Bernanke
    Paulson
    Geithner
    Summers
    Heads of the big banks.
    few are listening to what other chief economists are saying like Krugman, Stiglitz, Roubini, etc. (by the way, some of those they’re NOT listening to are Nobel Laureats in economics).
    a recurring theme you hear from many top economists is that we must nationalize the banking system. And yet time and time again from administration/congress we hear that they will NOT do this. why aren’t we talking about nationalization?
    I’ve been watching the Congressional hearings, and for the most part Congress continues to defer to the “experts” which all seem to be bankers. they seem for whatever reason NOT to listen as much to the non-banking economists.
    so anyway, I’m not saying there’s some secret banking elite controlling the govt like puppets… I’m saying that for whatever reason most of the proposed plans being enacted are the ones being proposed by the bankers.
    where do you think the AIG bailout came from? where do you think the Citi bailout came from? where do you think the latest idiocy of converting Preferred Citi stock to Common Citi stock came from?
    why aren’t we talking about nationalization more seriously? why aren’t we talking about cram downs? why aren’t we talking about letting a big bank fail? why aren’t we talking about CDS problems? why aren’t we talking about clawbacks for executive compensation?
    These are more acts of desperation
    I agree fully
    Also the corrective actions you mention are impossible to implement entirely
    Really? impossible?
    it’s impossible to set up a clearing house for CDS contracts? no. it’s improbable because our govt won’t consider it. It is extremely difficult to do, but in the end it’s going to have to sort itself out one way or the other. I’ve researched and written more on the CDS problem than any other poster around here (and more than most posters on econ blogs like CalculatedRisk and NakedCapitalism as well) so I’d be happy to discuss this further if you choose. It’s extremely important to set this up, but I agree with you it won’t be done
    It’s impossible to set up emergency programs for basic food and shelter if we have a catastrophic downturn? we could have done this already with the estimated 7-8 Trillion we’ve already spent on the Banking sector.
    It’s impossible to let the banks fail? no it’s not. we already did (Lehman). it IS impossible so long as we don’t figure out the CDS issue though.
    it’s impossible to re-enact Glass Steagal? c’mon.
    It’s impossible to severely curtail leverage and off balance sheet entities?
    It’s impossible to curtail or even rid ourselves of fractional reserve lending? I agree. Because we listen to the bankers.
    It’s impossible to go back to a gold-based currency? again, I agree because we listen to the bankers. we were on a gold based currency until Nixon, so it hardly seems “impossible”
    I do agree with you though, few to none of my suggestions are even being discussed… because the govt isn’t listening to NONBANKER economists.
    and FWIW: much of what I’ve written above HAS been discussed by nobel laureat non-banker economists. so it’s not only some amateur-hour armchair economist wish list.
    Politically, what I write can never happen. because no president or congressperson would want to be seen as the person who crashed the world financial market (which is how it would look). that’s why I know we won’t do what needs to be done.
    so instead we’ll waste our national resources throwing money into insolvent banks. and then we’ll likely follow the Japanese path of a lost decade or two.
    I am intrigued from an intellectual standpoint about how much longer we can continue to do these bank bailouts though. It’s only a matter of time until AIG and Citi come back for more money. And then we also have BofA and JPMorgan and Wells and many States (California especially) and other municipalities. Not to forget pension funds.
    Not only that our European counterparts are about to find out that lending to Eastern Europe was a bad idea, so that crash will feed back on us again.
    there is one other way out of this mess… coordinated worldwide currency devaluation. I’m not exactly sure I understand how that will/can work, but it is something i’ve been thinking on a lot lately.
    Devalue all the currencies by a significant amount, and then hopefully get worldwide nominal wage increases, and it could help with some of this problem.
    So far Gold has been a problem in this regard (as they try to do it gold starts shooting up in nominal value) but there are ways around that problem as well.
    so anyway, my suggestions are far from impossible (they’re far more possible than making AIG and Citi solvent!!!! ROFL) but they will not be enacted. It’s not due to government control by some nefarious banking cartel, it’s due to apparent govt capture by our financial sector. (they basically come time and time again and say bail us out or we’ll go under triggering financial collapse… don’t believe me? read Bernanke’s testamony from this week).

  35. Posted by ex SF-er

    so exSFer – you’re saying the bread lines for the masses are coming ala The Great D?
    No. I’m saying that if my plan were implemented then we would quite likely have catastrophic financial problems with significant country-wide economic pain within a very short period of time (weeks to months) due to the likely failure of most major banks (the banks have already failed, we just don’t know it yet). However, it is not certain because we do not know how the CDS contracts would net out. NOBODY knows how the CDS will net (which is why we need a clearing house). but a prudent government would thus set aside money for the possible (likely) economic pain.
    but our society looks different (different technology) than it did in the 1930’s, so we wouldn’t need bread lines since we could use Government Debit cards as example. instead, it would look like lots of people on Welfare.
    So we’d likely have similar amounts of pain (20-25% or more of our population in poverty) but it wouldn’t be as visible (no breadlines or Hoovervilles)
    FWIW: in not doing my plan, we may also go into catastrophic worldwide financial pain anyway. nobody can know. so we should set up a plan for the possibility anyway. I propose my plan because I feel that it would shorten the duration of our pain, and it would be survivable to us as a country.
    what is clear is that the government is not being honest with its constituents (either that or they are so incompetent that they don’t know what they’re talking about, even worse). That should be clear by now. I have only to write a few quotes
    “the government will likely make money on this AIG deal!”
    “the government is guaranteeing $29 billion for this Bear Stearns Deal, but will probably not lose a dime!”
    “the banks are well capitalized!”
    “the subprime problem is contained!”
    “Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are sound!”
    “TARP will help, and $750billion will easily be enough”
    “TARP will be used to buy troubled assets”.
    “There is no real estate bubble”
    “the US wants a strong dollar policy”
    new lies:
    “the government is doing a stress test to see which banks are solvent and which are not” (oh, but the results of this are all secret to the public, and the assumptions being used are optimistic at best)
    “we’re not completely in the dark” (Bernanke said this last week).
    “the government will cut its deficit in half by 2012″
    the government clearly can’t get up and say “run for your lives, we’re all gonna die”. I understand that. But they COULD get up and say “we face considerable headwinds going forward. We must batten down our hatches and we must take drastic measaures to deal with this problem. We’ve never had a problem quite like this before. We are all going to have to sacrifice something so that we can get through this. We will thus start (INSERT PLAN HERE) and we will do it in a fair and open manner.”
    did I think we were headed for a depression in 2007? no. Severe recession? yes. Do I think we’re headed for depression now? it appears likely depending on your definition of depression. but my crystal ball is broken over long time scales… I’ve already said that many times before on socketsite since our government took over the financial sector. the future depends on just a handful of people, who are making decisions based on politics, not based on rational thought or economics. so who knows.
    FWIW:
    Since my post on Jan 28th (where I forecasted another drop in the markets within 1-2 months) the S&P is down 16%
    I’m sure many of you again think it’s all luck (specifically jessep).
    Economics is not a science. it is too reliant on mass psychology. but there are observable trends that do have SOME amount of predictive value. That’s how/why I predicted that the Stock market would fall again in February as example. It’s how I predicted major stock losses in 2008, a major RE downturn that would affect San Francisco as well as the nation, Fannie/Freddie failing, etc.
    Others think it is pure luck, but really it is making informed decisions with improved odds (note: not perfection, improved odds).
    Current observable trends do not support a V shaped recovery. It supports an L shaped or wide U shaped recession. Credit crises take many years to sort themselves out. I started saying that in 2007 here on Socketsite: that the downturn would be long and hard… over a year before the government even admitted a recession. also before most socketsite posters believed we’d even enter a recession.
    government can have an impact to lessen the duration of the crisis. But thus far our government has done little to none of those needed actions. instead, they have embarked on a pathway that tends to prolong the recession (zombification of banks).
    IMO an optimistic scenario is that we have recovery by 2012. I’ve said that for 2 years now. A pessimistic scenario is decades from now. I am unable to estimate the depth of the recession (recession vs depression) partly because I don’t even know how to quantify the difference.
    if we had total luck and the govt did everything right, we could have improvement earlier than 2012. but as others correctly point out, nobody (including me) knows exactly what “the right” thing is. but I think my ideas are “more right” than what’s being proposed by the bankers.
    For a while I was relatively optimistic (back in Dec/Jan, remember?). that optimism is now gone for now.
    but maybe I’m just bitter. Maybe 2 more Citi bailouts and taking over AIG’s CDS liabilities will help. I have no idea how on Earth that would help anything… but the CEO’s of AIG and Citi sure have convinced Bernanke and Geithner of that fact… and they have Obama/Pelosi/Shumer/Frank’s ears, not me.
    besides, we can all see how well these banking bailouts have worked so far. well enough to get 2 more (TARP II and also CAP). hooray!

  36. Posted by gowiththeflow

    OhGawdFoMoYrs just for the record my opinion is not completely similar, nor as harsh as yours and I apologize if anyone took it that way.

  37. Posted by gowiththeflow

    “the government clearly can’t get up and say “run for your lives, we’re all gonna die”. I understand that.”
    I think some all ready feel this has been said to them.
    “But they COULD get up and say “we face considerable headwinds going forward. We must batten down our hatches and we must take drastic measaures to deal with this problem. We’ve never had a problem quite like this before. We are all going to have to sacrifice something so that we can get through this. We will thus start (INSERT PLAN HERE) and we will do it in a fair and open manner.”
    Exactly.
    This is why I do not understand what Obamab is doing right now. Everyone poor to rich are hurting or will hurt in some way. We need to work as a team, provide a little incentive to everyone not just a select group. Some get more help than others, fair. For Obama to say however everyone help out, get on board our team, let’s op together to win yet you, you and you get nothing, than in the same month turn around and tell the same group that get’s zero assistance that by 2011 or so your cat’s curtains – is not in my opin that motivating. Not the way to get us all to band together.
    I am not poor, nor rich so my vies are most likely skewed but hey it’s just my opinion.

  38. Posted by LMRiM

    Obama has no interest in creating a “team”. His game plan – as is every politician’s – is to pit one group against another in order to distract the population and create dependent voting groups to ensure reelection. In order to get this accomplished, each party has to bribe its friends. One gang goes out, another comes in.
    What’s so hard to understand about this? (I suspect that it comes down to the old question of faith. Religious faith – most often manifested in the West as a belief in a powerful, often benign force – has been around forever. The secularists have transferred this natural characteristic of the human condition unto small “g” instead of big “G”.)
    I guess theoretically government could do the right things here. The real questions are: 1) does it or can it know what is the “right thing”? And 2) even if it does and can, does it really want to?
    This was a short and sweet opinion piece I came across yesterday that’s worth reading:
    “Indeed, government loves economic downturns. For decades, the private economy has been outrunning government…. This has annoyed the state to no end. Now is the time for reprisal.
    Economic depression is good for the state. Even if the state knew how to end it, why would we suppose that it has the incentive to do so?”
    http://mises.org/story/3360

  39. Posted by anonn

    Find another platform, dude. There are plenty. Try a cocktail party in Marin. LOL.

  40. Posted by OhGawdFoMoYrs

    I did not imply that our opinions were completely similar. I simply pulled two quotes that I agreed with, so I don’t know why you would think that, and I didn’t mean for my post to reflect your opinion in any way. In any event, I have never in my life been known to sugar-coat anything I say, and that’s the only way to get through to some people, is to slap them with the “harsh” reality. But even so … Obamerica will just turn a deaf ear.
    Obamerica is bleeding this country out faster than anyone’s head can spin, and his followers have no idea that we will ALL be paying for his outrageous spending spree for GENERATIONS to come. Even if they knew, they wouldn’t care in the least. All they care about is, “What’s in it for me here and NOW?”

  41. Posted by tipster

    I don’t think it’s a conspiracy. They are politicians, and so they can dodge this as being the fault of the prior administration as long as they can’t be blamed for making it worse. As long as they don’t state that it’s as gloomy as it is, they can’t be charged with that problem, so they’ll stay on the positive side of it.
    But Obama hasn’t exaclt been running around stating “buy now or be priced out forever!” He’s been saying all along it’s not going to be quick or easy.
    However, I think Warren Buffet just announced the emperor has no clothes: it’s bad. And the solution isn’t in the second half of this year.

  42. Posted by tipster

    “Obamerica is bleeding this country out faster than anyone’s head can spin, and his followers have no idea that we will ALL be paying for his outrageous spending spree for GENERATIONS to come.”
    The country currently believes it is richer than it really is. The politicians decided that New orleans was a lost cause and should be left to sink after Katrina. The country made it clear that it would harass them til the cows came home unless they spent a lot of money for no real purpose. So the politicians spent the money on the lost cause called New Orleans and the public was happy again. However, that was the end of the republican dominance and so the politicians will not make the same mistake (of not spending a LOT of money on a politically popular lost cause) again.
    I agree that people look out for their short term interests and ignore the long term. without leadership, and the republican party has NONE right now, all you can do is give the public what it wants, or what the democrats want. And right now, those are one in the same.
    It’s easy: plan on a Japanese-style disaster of an economy for ten years. High cost producers will wither and die. Low cost producers will succeed. Shift your thinking and then you won’t care. We’re all upset in the bay area because this is a high cost area. Someone in Austin isn’t really going to see much impact in about a year.

  43. Posted by anonn

    Tipster, you need a different platform for your crackpot stuff too. New Orleans = public outcry= lesson learnt by GOP = lesson learnt by Dems = financial crisis policy?
    Here’s a terrific neocon policy that cost all of us quite a lot of money:
    http://www.costofwar.com

  44. Posted by gowiththeflow

    “Obama has no interest in creating a “team”. His game plan – as is every politician’s – is to pit one group against another in order to distract the population and create dependent voting groups to ensure reelection. In order to get this accomplished, each party has to bribe its friends. One gang goes out, another comes in.”
    I know, I get it. I am fairly young and really just accepted this the past 5 years or so. When it first soaked in I was discouraged, now I live with it. Does not mean however that I won’t continue to desire a better and different way.
    I just hoped (God I hate that word these days) this time around given it is a once in a blue moon circumstance and given it is so easy to tell a white lie to the masses that the gov would try to pull the wool over all our eyes at once if they plan to do it at all. Give us each a little medicine with out telling us how serious our sickness is. Given I and others pitch in more than our fair share it would be nice to get a little something back even if we don’t believe a word they are telling us.
    It sounds like everyone on the board knows one another so not sure what the beef is between anonn and some others but it’s just a blog.
    OhGawdFoMoYrs I appreciate you not sugar coating and everyone is entitled to say what they want, believe what they want so go for it. I enjoy hearing different points of view. I agree with you re Obama bleeding the country etc. etc. Just wanted to distance myself from things like calling people peasants, sorry asses, social parasites etc. a bit harsh for my taste and I don’t agree in terming all of those that make less than “the rich” that way.

  45. Posted by location

    tipster,
    I agree that our massive national debt is one of the biggest problems facing the future of our nation. I felt that way when it first ballooned during the Reagan administration, continued to increase during Bush 1, continued to feel that way when it’s growth slowed during the Clinton years, continued to feel that way when it ballooned during Bush 2, and continue to feel that way now that Obama wants to increase it further. What I don’t understand is the commonly held belief among Republicans that our debt is exclusively the fault of Democrats. I mean I’m glad that Republicans are suddenly concerned about it, but I mean, where have they been for the past 30 years?

  46. Posted by Jimmy (No Longer Bitter)

    flow: The two main characters here are:
    anonn is a realtor in Noe Valley who used to post under the name fluj and is underwater on a house flip at 219 Los Palmos Ave. in SF. He secretly hopes that everything will go ‘back to normal’ so that he doesn’t lose all his money in the crash.
    and LMRIM is a resident of Tiburon who used to post long economic treatises under the name Satchel when he lived in SF, and was oddly prescient about how 2008 would play out economically. But he’s given up on that hobby which was quite interesting, and has revealed himself to be a raving libertarian.

  47. Posted by gowiththeflow

    Our debt is the fault of all Americans and the sense of entitlement each one of us for some reason thinks we have. It has become an epidemic and even I at times am at fault. If you don’t have the money and won’t be able to figure out how to cover the expenses don’t spend, it really is that easy. If circumstances change and you can’t afford your lifestyle tone it down until you can. If you really can’t make ends meet because say you are disabled, hit by catastrophy, abused looking for a new life, offering foster care to helpless children, lost a job and are trying to find another one but have never abused the system than fine you deserve more help than others. The base of it all may be human nature, survival of the fittest etc. but it has become too large a beast.
    What we all think is bad in no way compares to what many on the planet live with on a daily basis.
    Problem is as LMRiM describes we all eventually are forced to pick sides.

  48. Posted by anonn

    “anonn is a realtor in Noe Valley who used to post under the name fluj and is underwater on a house flip at 219 Los Palmos Ave. in SF. He secretly hopes that everything will go ‘back to normal’ so that he doesn’t lose all his money in the crash.”
    Wow. Naked libel. You cater to really terrific people on this website, Adam.

  49. Posted by gowiththeflow

    Thanks J So Annon is upset that LMRiM was right
    and because LMRiM was right he is on a soap box.
    Funny stuff, I kind of like it – keeps it really interesting.

  50. Posted by Jimmy (No Longer Bitter)

    How is that libel? It is fluj’s only listing … talk about putting all your eggs in one basket. jeez.

  51. Posted by diemos

    “I agree that our massive national debt is one of the biggest problems facing the future of our nation.”
    No. What’s owed internally is just bookkeeping and what’s owed externally we will walk away from like a subprime mortgagee.
    The two real problems on the horizon in terms of the lifestyle that the average american will be able to afford are:
    1. When the day finally comes that foreigners stop giving us free money with which to buy their stuff.
    2. When we can no longer command the lion’s share of the world’s resources.

  52. Posted by anonn

    Because it is not underwater, never was, and it is just about sold. It is a lovely home, with superb amenities and construction, and the market viewed it accordingly. It received four offers over the course of its marketing run. My phone continues to ring. It has been nothing short of a success story. But here’s the thing. It is not mine, it never was, and I never had a stake in it. The owner is a family member. You “what-I-see-on-the-Internet-is-reality” people are too much. Some asinine busybody saw a tax record and made an assumption. Read what my real name was on another website, and brought it to this one, for the sake of titillation and mean spiritedness. Somebody listened to the armchair professor LMRIM’s opinion about the area, and made an assumption. You all piled on. Well guess what? You were all 100 percent wrong about every single aspect, from ownership to performance. I emailed the proprietor of this website, Adam Koval, three times about the subject asking him to step in and remove content. I do not put my business into this forum. You all went personal, repeatedly, wrongly, and stupidly, a dozen times. At least six of you. Perhaps more. Now you’re talking about “my eggs in a basket” ? Please. You know nothing about me. I have two deals closing in a week, and five underway. Your credibility is shot. You people own nothing. You are fake names spouting off nonsense for titillation. enough. Shut up already.

  53. Posted by diemos

    Then perhaps you should correct the mistake on the MLS listing where it says:
    Known short sale: Yes

  54. Posted by anonn

    Done. Wow. Someone said something useful for once! You might have told me about that six weeks ago, diemos. LOL. I have no idea how that happened. Probably my former broker or myself misused the tab button while editing.

  55. Posted by gowiththeflow

    Yikes. Anonn no hard feelings on my end, that is pretty crappy and definately not fair. I will say however as a newcomer who honestly does not pay attention to the personal items on the site that it always come’s a cross as the waters are still, you come out of left field and ratttle the others cages. Not fair of me to butt in as I have not been around long and am sure I don’t grasp what has been happening but just so you know. This from one who does own, and has nothing against you or realtors in general.

  56. Posted by hangemhi

    the massive transfer of wealth from the poor and middle class to the wealthy ever since Reagan is the real “redistribution of wealth”. This financial crisis is the final act where all the middle class who thought they were joining the ranks of the elite via real estate & credit card “wealth” now find themselves poorer than when this mess started.
    the temporary dip/crash in the stock market, and the crash of RE values, only creates buying opportunities for those with cash – ie the wealthy. Your 401k is getting sucked dry while they are hoard cash, and they will soon swoop in and end up owning an even higher percentage of america’s wealth than they owned before.
    was that a well planned thought out strategy? only partially. the rich found ways to enrich themselves with trickle down economics, oil wars when they owned oil companies, etc, but i don’t think they knew that further enriching themselves would decimate the country and the other 98% of americans. i just don’t think they thought beyond their own interests, beyond their little monopoly game pieces. the selfish aren’t trying to hurt others, they just don’t think about others
    LMRiM calls it a planned conspiracy by a secret elite, but IMO they are out in the open. They have used guns and religion to keep the true peasants voting for their redistribution of wealth, to the wealthy, policies going.
    correcting this transfer of wealth via national health care, taxes for the rich, more money to schools, etc is just the other side of the same coin that gave us Iraq, Enron, the RE bubble, etc
    i’m in favor of the latest transfer, except it should be $500k plus, not $250k plus. but whatever. the idea that taxes will keep people from trying to earn more is ridiculous. are the rich going to stop trying to get rich if you take more of their money away? huh????? that would make them poor. duh

  57. Posted by tipster

    anonn,
    you can’t have it both ways. You can’t complain that diemos did not point out something about your listing while screaming about people posting about your listing.
    That said, listing the address was over the top, jimmy and wasn’t necessary to make your point.
    hangemhi has a good point: Americans were promised that reduced taxes would increase business opportunities and the wealth would trickle down to them. They are now realizing that the promised increase in income didn’t happen, and they are ready for something new, a reasonable belief, especially now that they are scared.
    Of course, what they are about to find out is that the alternative doesn’t exactly raise their incomes either. When unemployment reaches a certain level, wages actually fall. At least for the last 25 years, anyone who wanted a job could get one and that meant employers like me had to pay top dollar to get good people. I no longer have that belief.
    So what do you do in an environment in which there isn’t enough money to go around. Can you really have a society in which 15% of the people are unemployed, yet you keep taking money from those who are employed and giving it to people who are not employed?
    Maybe that’s what they are going to try. Anyone who saw the Chavez/Putin-style termination of Sallie Mae this week has to wonder. The funny part is that they just screwed over all the rich kids in college right now who voted for Obama: their college money is going to be handed to poor people next year, not them!

  58. Posted by LMRiM

    LOL about “secret conspiracies” and “now it’s the little guy’s turn” under Obama.
    Watch how this plays out. The poor and middle class are going to be much poorer than before. Just watch, it takes time to play out fully. It will be ironic to watch the Bay Area unravel much of the “specialness” that it enjoyed as a result of the ascendancy of the FIRE economy since reagan, knowing that they voted overwhelmingly for the figurehead who is going to preside over the early stages of the unravel.
    The problem is not (and never has been – yet) the size of governmental debt. At never more than 50-70% of GDP (depending on how you want to treat the integovernmental IOUs relating to the entitlements), it was never a problem in and of itself. The big problem has been the explosion of private debt (especially household and financial sector), the direct result of manipulation of the currency and interest rates, and foolish tax distortions. As this private debt is absorbed by the public sector, a dynamic which will explode under Obama, but was started in a big way under the last figurehead and teh Democrat Congress (TARP I), this public debt may become a huge problem for the US generally going forward (I think it will).
    The coming entitlements crises are going to be disasters for people who put their faith in government. These programs are the legacy of Democratic administrations (FDR for the social security ponzi scheme and LBJ for the medicare misallocation and distortion). However, that’s to some degree an accident of history IMO. Both parties seek aggrandizement of power, and try to create dependnet sheeple to vote them in. In the case of the Great Society, it was a successful strategy for the Democrats, as they reliably turned black Americans from Republican (people forget that) to Democrat. Having witnessed its effects first hand growing up in the Bronx in the 1970s, I’d say it wasn’t too successful from the point of view of the average inner city resident, but I digress….
    Anyway, the US will survive. The smart and ruthless are trying to figure out how to game all the changes that are coming. My bet is that inequality will increase, not decrease, as an ever encroaching state tries to cover up its misdeeds.

  59. Posted by anonn

    I wasn’t complaining, Tipster. That was a joke about a typo.
    You’re no moderator pal. You’re a propagandist who tries to weigh in on everything. You see yourself as some sort of advisor as well. Guess what? I have news for you. In that role you give really bad advice. You had no business spouting off about OMI for protected tenants last week. You did not understand the subject material fully, yet you posted about it.
    You admitted error. Hey, great. Better than 99% of these unaccountable hobbyists. But you write in an authoritative manner, not a questioning one, not a probing, or learning manner. Someone probably read half the thread and walked away with the wrong idea. Again, you don’t have to talk in every thread, guy. Including this one.

  60. Posted by condoshopper

    for you forecasting the sh*tstorm that’s coming our way, do you make contingency plans of leaving this country? if so, where would you go?

  61. Posted by ex SF-er

    wow, people are really vitriolic today, huh???
    condoshopper:
    there are worse things than a depression
    and there are more important things than money
    most people will just do the best they can here.
    in terms of going elsewhere: this is a worldwide problem, and not restricted to any one country.
    I know a few people who are the “guns and ammo” types who say they’ll leave if the SHTF… they mainly say Uruguay or Paraguay. but moreso Uruguay.
    for more info:
    http://www.theuruguaygringo.com/2008/10/08/uruguay-is-the-place-to-escape-the-united-states-recession/

  62. Posted by tipster

    Honestly, annon, it’s a blog not an encyclopedia. I’m right far more than I’m wrong, but no, I’m not perfect. No apologies for that. And this is the wrong thread to be calling me out about accuracy, mine was the post (3rd from the top) that corrected the title.
    I’m coming to the conclusion that Bay Area real estate will be toast for awhile. I was hoping for a crash, like that of other cities, but then some stabilization followed by a recovery, the proverbial ‘U’, not a years long decline like Japan where a bottom is never evident. The steps being take to prop up real estate and the economy in general, having little applicability here, will likely have more of a negative effect on bay area real estate due to the decreased wealth of the country. They are sacrificing any recovery to prop up real estate and jobs in the heartland. So real estate drops and then drops some more. And these steps are being repeated in other countries, so there isn’t another country around to take up our slack. It’s very sad for this area.
    Will I buy a home next year for $1M if it is going to decline in value by 5% per year going forward for many years, even though that home would have cost $2M last year? I doubt I’ll be willing to bear the extra $4K per month it will cost.
    But any employer that doesn’t get the message that low cost is the only way to survive will be out of business in a year. The business environment is getting too brutal too fast for the business people not to notice and fly out of here.

  63. Posted by anonn

    Then quit trying to act like you’re an encyclopedia, weighing in on each and every subject with a false voice of authority. Or better yet, stop acting as if you’re the “Book of the Dead for All Possible Real Estate Related News Items. TM” You know, preparing us all for our final journey and stuff.
    And LOL, I actually did laugh out loud, at the Tipster “coming to the conclusion” that Bay Area real estate will be toast for a while. You’re “coming to the conclusion”? After seizing upon each and every news item, price reduction and r.e. apocrypha as surefire sign of total destruction for years? You’ve been coming to the conclusion that the Bay Area is toast ever since I encountered this website! Dude, you’re simply the internet version of the guy down the street who loves to talk the market at open houses. To answer your hypothetical, you will never buy anything, ever. Because you’re that guy. You think you’ll time the market next time if you miss the bottom this time. The time after that you’ll think the same thing.

  64. Posted by confused

    Fluj, is it possible that your posts actually encourage some of the comments that seem to be driving you insane? As a salesperson working with the general public, I am surprised you make such strong statements in a public forum. This is a strange way of getting business and customers imho.

  65. Posted by Jimmy (No Longer Bitter)

    fluj, buddy, you gotta chill out. You’re like that kid in the schoolyard who when you tease him just a little bit flies off the handle and starts screaming at everyone — which is really entertaining for everyone else watching.
    (I should know — I was that kid in elementary school!)

  66. Posted by San FronziScheme

    ViewLover, belated comment on one of your posts:
    You interpreted my comment about “lazyness” too literally.
    In the context of my post I said people were lazy and wanted to go for the quick fix. The metaphore (fat guy who needed a diet) was not about people here working too little (heck, I’ve pulled intense 80-hour+ weeks myself these past years), but about the Feds wanting to soften the blow with more of the same cr@p that brought the current situation. You cannot borrow yourself out of debt. Borrowing is easy. Paying your debt is harder because you have to makes sacrifices, like – gasp – living within your means and saving for your future and your families. This is the laziness I am talking about.

  67. Posted by anonn

    I am not trying to get any clients on here. I should think that would have been very clear from word one. I’m not certain why you think candor doesn’t belong in real estate, though. Insanity? No. Your name seems apt. You are confused indeed if you don’t hire people with the integrity to tell off those who would wrong them.

  68. Posted by anonn

    Save it Jimmy. You’re lecturing people on proper behavior now, after your stunt today? I’ve been telling you folks and I don’t care if you believe me or not, but Web 3.0 aint gonna be so laissez faire.

  69. Posted by kb

    condoshppoer:
    Thailand. Anywhere in Southeast Asia.
    I have been hoarding cash for a year.

  70. Posted by Jimmy (No Longer Bitter)

    Hey, don’t kill the messenger. I’m just letting you know why everyone picks on you that’s all. Quit reacting and it’ll all go away.

  71. Posted by Jimmy (No Longer Bitter)

    Thailand is on the brink of civil war; once the king dies (imminent) that country will disintegrate.

  72. Posted by Jimmy (No Longer Bitter)

    What’s with the Web 3.0 comment? What’s that got to do with anything?

  73. Posted by anonn

    That didn’t sound like an apology, or an admission of error. It sounded like a flippant guy who is still not understanding that this isn’t all fun and games to everyone all the time. “Messenger” ? Buddy. You posted falsehoods about me, and my business, on the internet in front of a ton of people today. You think your i.p. address isn’t obtainable? Or your words culpable? You watch yourself, pal.

  74. Posted by San FronziScheme

    Before all of you guys become expats, please consider where these countries were when the last crises/recessions hit, then multiply the troubles by 2… You don’t want to live under a junta regime or Chavez/Mugabe-style populism. Social unrest in the US is totally DOA imho despite all the crazy talk from the people frustrated by the last election results. If the US is hit hard then poorer countries will be hit way way harder and your daily life will be hell. Better live in a country where you can trust businesses and administrations, the police, the taxman. A place where you know the language, the customs and the telltale signs of trouble. Living in another continent should be done for the country, the people and the culture, not to escape a fictitious apocalypse or artificially live on the cheap…

  75. Posted by Jimmy (No Longer Bitter)

    There you go flying off the handle again. Its the internet. Relax. No one cares.
    Nothing I said was not supported by observable facts that you published online.
    E.g. you mistakenly identifying the house as a short sale. Someone might read that online and jump to the conclusion that it’s a short sale … and therefore the seller is underwater on the transaction.
    Or the fact that you have only one listing on your website. You’re not gonna live all year on a $30k commission check now are you?
    See how it’s all your fault?

  76. Posted by Jimmy (No Longer Bitter)

    Anyone thinking of moving to Thailand should fly to Bangkok, drive around and note the dozen or so half-built highrise buildings (a legacy of the 1998 currency crisis). Then imagine that scene x10, add in a highly repressive military junta barely kept at bay by the current king, and civil war between the urban population and rural peasants. If the country disintegrates it will be an extremely ugly place to live.
    Try New Zealand if you want to get away. Nice people, easy going and civilized.

  77. Posted by San FronziScheme

    Jimmy,
    1 – “No one cares.” I beg to disagree. People care about what is posted online. People shopping for homes overwhelmingly know how to use a computer and educate themselves on the cheap. Whatever is posted about an area, a city, a property will stick. The web has become the biggest source of news for many and that includes RE info. All this is why “some” will not let anything unanswered as it could be construed as an admission of the content of the post. This sometimes leads to endless cockfights.
    2 – “Thailand”. Are these buildings occupied in any way? I have been to countries where people will not complete buildings because the tax laws litteraly say that a building is taxed only when complete and that a building is complete when the roof is finished. Take Greece and Israel for instance. Though my knowledge of these dates from 10+ years ago.

  78. Posted by anonn

    I have a website? No, I don’t have a website. That particular property has a website. You know that agents make commissions from purchases too, right? But feel free to say true things about my next listing it’s coming in a week or two.
    What do you do for a living, Jimmy? Nobody pays you to make goofy assumptions all day I should think.

  79. Posted by LMRiM

    About “safe places” I intend to stay right here in the US. I don’t expect total chaos, but there is a possibility of that of course. In that event, the safest “best” place to be IMO would be more a state and style of living, rather than a particular place. I’d like to be in a smallish town, surrounded by people who know and like me. A place where personal connections and loyalty are much more important than amorphous promises of “government” stability. People who are prepared to defend what’s theirs with guns, if necessary, and are highly suspicious of outsiders. I would think the worst place to be if chaos erupts is in an urban area, surrounded by people who are largely transient to the area, and where neighborhoods are not easily defensible.
    But that’s all a very small likelihood outcome. And many sensible people might come to the conclusion that it is not worth changing their lives enough to prepare for that in view of the probabilities (and the chance that even if the worst outcome does evolve, the preparations would have all been for nought anyway). That’s largely the conclusion I have reached, btw.
    However, before our latest move, we did give a little consideration to what might happen to SF in the event of a protracted recession/depression and huge spike in crime. I don’t want to beat a dead horse forever, but I have faced this (huge spike in danger/crime) as a kid in the Bronx in the 1970s. We partially picked Tiburon because of the relatively stable family demographic (for the Bay Area, anyway), and the fact that there is really only one road in and out (Route 131). It would be very easy to block off that access route if TSHTH, and you can be certain that would be done by local police and residents. At least as certain as you can be of anything in the Bay Area :) Again, though, small chance of this being necessary, but…..
    ********
    anonn, stop taking such umbrage that people thought it was your flip, and enough with your “what someone saw on a tax record” nonsense. Check the preliminary title report, commissioned by you, addressed to you and provided by you on the flip for which you are acting as agent, and kindly explain how observers could not come to the conclusion that (1) you and your wife are the fee owners of the property and (2) that as of the September 2008 date of the preliminary report, property taxes were delinquent (apparently since paid, though). (In case you haven’t read the report, which wouldn’t surprise me, I’d be happy to point you to the relevant sections if necessary.) That info, coupled with a “mistaken” listing as a short sale (which I have never called out, BTW), and you can see why people drew the conclusions they did (again, though, conclusions that I never called out).
    With all respect, step down off your high horse about this, and be a little more careful with the information you yourself have provided in publicly available marketing materials (MLS listing and selling website) before you start throwing around legal conclusions and going all “Web 3.0″ on us.

  80. Posted by Trip

    Fluj, I for one am sincerely disappointed this is not your place. I thought you were on the verge of a nice little profit. I can see how you had a bit of fun stringing the schadenfreude crowd along. But instead of trying to get the editor to remove content, why didn’t you just post earlier “you idiots, it’s not my place; I’m just the broker”?

  81. Posted by Jimmy (No Longer Bitter)

    What do I do for a living? Thanks for asking. These days, I spend about 75% of my time writing 20-page letters to the government asking for money to support my company’s R&D activities. I’m pretty good at it. This year I will bring in about $2.8M, (thanks to years of hard work setting this up) of which I get … well, all of it, since I’m the owner.

  82. Posted by Jimmy (No Longer Bitter)

    SFS — the buildings don’t appear to be occupied in any way as far as I could tell. Maybe there’s some squatters or something.
    Yes, it is for tax purposes that they are still standing there. These are HUGE highrises, mind you, 50 stories or more. It is eerie. God only knows how many other smaller projects failed in 1998 and are still scattered around the city unfinished.

  83. Posted by diemos

    “About “safe places” I intend to stay right here in the US.”
    I try to remember that the US has all the resources it needs to feed, clothe and house everyone. The current unpleasantness is mainly a feature of the particular resource allocation system that we use and is fixable at any time. The only thing standing in the way is politics.

  84. Posted by gowiththeflow

    “The metaphore (fat guy who needed a diet)”
    Is not just the FEDS, it includes a large portion of our population unfortuantely which equates to this all being a big debt clusterf#&*.
    Flug about IP addresses; I know the blog creator has them. Do you know of a way to get them with out him passing them out?

  85. Posted by anonn

    I do, gowiththeflow. I don’t want to get into it any more, OK? There has been enough negativity already.
    Trip, thanks for wishing me well. I always have a project of my own going on, tho. I did say what you said I should have. It was simply lost in one of the many harpy choruses. But be happy for the sellers. Had they been more exposed in equities –which is precisely where they were, like a lot of people, in winter/spring/summer 2008 — they would have lost a lot of money. Instead they followed through on a good plan with very large profit projections that came down a bit, and fared well.

  86. Posted by gowiththeflow

    Fluj that is fair, I was just curious although I was hoping you would say no.
    Will leave it at that – I agree there has been enough negativity allready. Best with your endeavors.

  87. Posted by gowiththeflow

    Fluj don’t get mad at me for saying this please am only brining it up in hopes (honestly) that it will make you feel better.
    I just spoke with a techie I know and have been told there is no way for anyone but the webmaster to get the individual IP addresses.
    So unless you have figures out a way yourself I think you can breathe a little easier.
    No response needed I really am just hoping to reduce the stress not just on your end, but mine in thinking I could be outed so easy.

  88. Posted by anonn

    Look man, lawyers can get IP addresses. Somebody a little less mellow than myself would take a great deal more offense to say, someone following him around a website with a mocking username. A mocking username that’s a clear attempt to denigrate a commercial process, no less. Bet on it. Yelp is seeing a whole lot of websites flying right now.

  89. Posted by anono

    fluj: Go for it. I triple-dog dare ‘ya.
    See, one of many problems with your idiotic empty threats is that in order to prevail in a suit you have to show damages. As in: you lost money because of something that was said on this site.
    That’s gonna be tough. Bet on it.

  90. Posted by condoshopper

    thanks to those chiming in on the moving out of the country issue. just wanted to gather some different perspectives on the topic. i have a couple of options – option by which i mean i have or can gain citizenship – one in europe and one in asia. but i’m not sure life will be easier in either one than the u.s.

  91. Posted by anonn

    Threat? What threat? I was pressed on the subject by gowiththeflow. I happen to think it’s a bad idea to harass and/or spread falsehoods in this day and age. Disagree if you like.
    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2009/02/08/MNOJ15F979.DTL

  92. Posted by San FronziScheme

    Going back to the sub-thread of buildings stopped before completion, I stumbled upon one of the biggest white elephants in RE history:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ryugyong_Hotel

  93. Posted by gowiththeflow

    I was just asking about the IP thing more for my own curiosity..and because I thought you were worried about people knowing who you are Fluj. I was really truly trying to make you feel better, aleviate your concerns. Having been on this blog almost 6 months now I still have no idea who you are and I know about a lot of RE in SF so rest easy bro. No hard feelings. I am not looking to get lumped in with the group here regarding prior turf wars, just looking for constructive info.
    By all means if I did anything to tick you off, please let me know because 1) I have no idea what that would be and 2) if I did I apologize as it was not intentional.

  94. Posted by Snowball

    Re: “In addition these day’s it seems a majority of Americans who do get what they want, don’t always think about giving back. There is a lack of respect, being thankful, and giving in return. I just feel like the give a little to get a little theory here has fallen by the wayside.”
    I believe Americans are among the most charitable, if not the most charitable , per capita, on Earth.

  95. Posted by Brian

    Go out and try to get one of these FHA loans for a “super conforming” 3 unit building. Let us know how that works out, and what the rate really is.

  96. Posted by Jorge

    @gowiththeflow
    No need to worry about der Fluj’s identity. Fluj outed himself on this site a bit ago, hence the multiple references to the property he is selling. He left in a huff to thefrontsteps.com when his drivel became unbearable but kept his pseudonym. Possibly the dumbest marketing move I’ve ever seen in my 10 years as a business owner, but he never disappoints me with his stupidity. He likes bubbles, illogic, and moving the goal posts during arguments. Long walks on the beach are great as well, but only when they’re in D7 or Noe where the paradigm shifts and the RE bulls roam. He likes to hurl the muck, but will call ‘foul’ when it is returned. He’ll threaten to leave when the argument turns against him…
    But most of all,
    He’s our special wittle “Bagdad Bob by the Bay”.

  97. Posted by anonn

    Jorge,
    Man you are so far up your own nether regions you aint never coming down. I Never “outed” myself on this site, pal. I “outed” myself on another site. Bad idea? yep. It sure turned out to be. I definitely underestimated the lurking malcontents on that website, like you. A marketing move you called it? Clearly it was anything but. Nothing you said there made very much sense. Reel it in bro. Reel in the anger. D7? never really had all that much to say about it. Noe Valley? I have plenty to say about it. Just ask. Politely. “Bubbles, illogic, long walks on the beach” — dude, you are not my equal in terms of logical reduction or expressing yourself with the written word. Maybe that’s why you’re always so aggro? Not sure. Paradigm shifts, RE bulls roam … please. I hurl the much? Son, you don’t know how to be cordial. “Baghdad Bob by the Bay” — I think there’s a not completely reasoned Herb Caen reference in there somewhere.
    Nice one. Six glasses of wine in ya and you get on here and do some venting, eh? Nice one.

  98. Posted by Jorge

    @BBBTB
    Thanks for the polite, cordial response. I’ll spend more time in the future considering your cutting analysis (anecdotal observation) and logical assessments of the current market situation (ignorance of macroeconomics).

  99. Posted by San FronziScheme

    I believe Americans are among the most charitable, if not the most charitable , per capita, on Earth.
    I’ll second that.

  100. Posted by anonn

    “Thanks for the polite, cordial response. I’ll spend more time in the future considering your cutting analysis (anecdotal observation) and logical assessments of the current market situation (ignorance of macroeconomics).

    Who cares what you do? or what you think? You offer nothing except malice. I have your ear. You don’t have mine.

  101. Posted by LMRiM

    Here’s an interesting op ed on charitable giving and Americans. Nothing that hasn’t been in the news before, but it does provide a few stats:
    “Americans give sums to charity equivalent to 1.67 percent of G.N.P., according to a terrific new book, “Philanthrocapitalism,” by Matthew Bishop and Michael Green. The British are second, with 0.73 percent, while the stingiest people on the list are the French, at 0.14 percent.”
    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/12/21/opinion/21kristof.html?_r=2

  102. Posted by Jorge

    @fluj
    “Who cares what you do? or what you think? You offer nothing except malice. I have your ear. You don’t have mine.”
    Hmmmmmm, that’s odd. I thought you said you’d stop responding to me over 2 months ago. You also said you left this site for good at least twice.
    Don’t get me wrong, I love having the Baghdad Boob from the Bay around. You validate my property ownership position with every word you write.
    Peace out. I’m very micro, and you’re very macro. Can’t we just get along?

  103. Posted by San FronziScheme

    LMRiR,
    I can testify the French are the stingiest for individual charity. They consider their free healthcare, unemployment insurance, good retirement and other programs are enough to support the neediest.

  104. Posted by San FronziScheme

    As an addendum to the social side of charity, I am amazed at the individual support to the arts in the US. This speaks a lot to an European who had big misconceptions when he arrived here many years ago.

  105. Posted by sfrob

    Fronzi – I was about to post something similar – low charity contributions by the french when so much is offered by the State… duh? Of course.
    Every time you hear a stat you should play spin doctor for the opposing team and wonder what the caveat is. Perfect example is France low in personaly charity, vs. high in govt charity and the US the total opposite

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