Saturday, February 18, 2006

Weekend Open Discussion

Open Discussion for this weekend

Observations about your local areas, comments on news stories or the New Jersey housing bubble, Open House reports, etc. If you have any questions you wanted to ask earlier in the week but never posted them up, let's have them.

For readers that have never commented, there is a small link on the bottom of each new message that reads "# Comments". Go ahead and give that a click, you might be missing out on a world of information you didn't know about. While you are there, introduce yourselves to everyone.

For new readers that have only read the messages displayed on the main page, take a look through the archives, a substantial amount of information has been put online in the past 6 months. The archives can be found at the bottom of the right hand menu and are categorized by month.

Caveat Emptor!
Grim

89 Comments:

Blogger grim said...

Developer offers plan to construct townhouses

K. Hovnanian, one of the state's largest developers, has filed plans with Rockaway Township to build 188 age-restricted townhouses along Green Pond Road on a piece of property that was originally approved for a shopping center.
...
K. Hovnanian has built Four Seasons communities across New Jersey, including complexes in Bridgewater, West Paterson and Warren Township. Another is under way in Parsippany, Fenichel said.

2/18/2006 07:43:00 AM  
Blogger grim said...

Plan to make over the waterfront roils Little Ferry

Plans for redeveloping the Hackensack River waterfront in Little Ferry ran into trouble Thursday night with broad opposition voiced by residents and property owners.

Local officials want high-end housing and retail space to take the place of old industrial plants that line the waterfront in the southern Bergen County town, but 150 protesters packed borough hall for the first public hearing.

Critics say the plans have been hatched in secret and fear they will involve the town using its powers of eminent domain to seize private property and hand it over to private developers.

2/18/2006 07:44:00 AM  
Blogger grim said...

Residents hit Highland Cross condo plan

Developers proposing to add condominiums to the Highland Cross Redevelopment Area heard residents sound off on how an influx of new residents could alter the character of the community and increase the cost of public services.
...
Citing a declining market for office space, however, the developers are now proposing to include luxury condos and nearly double the redevelopment site, which straddles the boundary between Rutherford and the Meadowlands District. The developers said that 20 percent of the Rutherford section of the site would be retail, with 80 percent residential.

2/18/2006 07:50:00 AM  
Blogger grim said...

Critics find fault with housing plan

Soaring retaining walls and worst-case scenarios involving the nearby Ramapo fault line took center stage as plans were unveiled for a controversial housing development off Route 202.

Vista Bahn II calls for 13 homes on 35.5 sloping acres between Seminary and Marion drives. Two new cul-de-sacs, one leading from Route 202, would be built for access to the development.

2/18/2006 07:51:00 AM  
Blogger grim said...

Developer to fight Teaneck's dismissal of condo application

A proposal for a condominium complex that was to go before the Board of Adjustment next month now appears more likely to end up before a state judge.

The zoning board Wednesday dismissed the application for the five-story, 52-unit complex on the southwest corner of DeGraw Avenue and Teaneck Road, after the project's developer rejected a previously agreed-upon March 29 hearing date.

The proposed luxury complex would require several variances and faces opposition from nearby residents who say it does not fit the character of the neighborhood.

2/18/2006 07:53:00 AM  
Blogger grim said...

Peapack-Gladstone considers age-restricted housing

After struggling with developers for years over an 86-acre tract formerly owned by Lucent, across from the Pfizer pharmaceutical complex, the Peapack-Gladstone Land Use Board this week began hearings on plans to build a 68-unit age-restricted community on the site.

The borough council in December unanimously voted to create an overlay zone for the property, permitting residential homes in the commercial site along Pottersville Road and Route 206. That paved the way for Peapack Residential Development Associates to begin a major site plan review for 33 duplexes and two single-family homes.

2/18/2006 07:57:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

why are you so concerned with savings rate? reading your prior postings, you put a lot of weight on its overall value as an economic metric. I think you are misled. A negative savings rate isnt a bad indicator on its own. You need to factor in other variables. Persons wealth is not all derived from a paycheck. Other revenue sources can and do affect spending patterns. You mentioned 1932 and 1933 as only two other periods when the savings rate was negative. This was during the great depression, not prior to it. Negative savings was a result of economic stress and hardship, not the leading indicator of an impending fiscal disaster.

Today, many more people have investment ownership, disproportionately higher than earlier periods. Your overall wealth and propensity to spend is driven by these factors as well. Payrolls and hourly wages have been relatively stagnant in the prior three years. However, real estate, credit and equity markets have shown above normal gains.

So, my point is that if you happen to spend as per your normal spending habits plus a percent of what you made from other sources of income, and your paycheck isnt larger, your personal savings rate will be negative. But, economically speaking, you are not worse off.

2/18/2006 10:19:00 AM  
Blogger Metroplexual said...

I will say it again. I don't see the attraction that age-restricted housing has for the buyer. I see why the towns like it. The market analysis done by Troll Bros. showed demand for it is waning not growing, that is why they killed a project in E. Brunswick.

2/18/2006 10:25:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"However, real estate, credit and equity markets have shown above normal gains."

This is why real estate will revert back to the mean. gdp grows on avg 5%. when asssets appreciate way beyond this rate they are ahead of fundamentals.
Housing normally over history appreciates about 5% a year. 10 years of appreciation just occurred in 3 years. It's time for giveback.
Liberal use of credit has spurred future consumption. At some point a retrenchment will take hold and credit expansion will slow dramatically.thus less fuel for the housing bubble.

2/18/2006 10:39:00 AM  
Blogger melchior said...

Thanks a lot Grim for all the inputs; your blog has been the greatest source of info for the house hunters. As many, I consider the housing market well overpriced and therefore sold my Hoboken property last september (have been renting since then). I am looking now for a large home in Morris or Somerset counties and what I have seen so far has been a great waste of time. According to my estimation, sellers inflate their price by at least 40% waiting for a fish to bite.

Now, I would like to share with the blogger community this info. The NJ tax department collects all the transaction's prices and compares them to the assessed price of each property. From their database, they compute the average ratio (assessed price / sold price) by city and by year.
With that coefficient and the assessed price of the property you are looking for, you can have a better understanding of the market price and compare it to the stupid offer price. I understand this coefficient is based on the past sells and does not fully encompass any improvements a seller may have add to his/her property since the last real assessment but it is an excellent base to negociate on.

Now the magic link:

http://www.state.nj.us/treasury/taxation/index.html?lpt/localtax.htm~mainFrame

Scroll down to "Table of Equalized Values"and click

Let me know if this is the killer app the RE agents do not want you to know.

Enjoy!

2/18/2006 11:32:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Link to "Table of Equalized Values"

http://www.state.nj.us/treasury/taxation/lpt/lptvalue.htm

2/18/2006 12:31:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here is a subject that should be some blood boiling.

What will be the relief for the folks that are caught short? God forbid that people loose a house , and have a ton of debt and not get bailed out!!

Anyone have thoughts on how this will play out and how us sitting on cash will be harmed?


CDF

2/18/2006 12:32:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks anon for Treasury information. It fantastic info. 2 -2.5 times assessed ridiculous. I would think maybe 1.5 times should be more appropriate.

2/18/2006 12:36:00 PM  
Anonymous Cassandra said...

Melchior --

Great tip. I just went there, though, & did not find a link for "Table of Equalized Values." I did find a link for "Coefficients of Deviation" and downloaded a pdf for my county. But then when I returned to the treasury url, the "Coefficients of Deviation" link was mysteriously gone.

Am I going insane or should I start developing a conspiracy theory? In the meantime, I do have the "Coefficients of Deviations" data for my county and would love to understand how better to interpret it from anyone out there who can shed light.

Cass

2/18/2006 01:10:00 PM  
Blogger melchior said...

Cassandra,

Sorry if the link does not work well, try this:

http://www.state.nj.us/treasury/taxation/

On the bottom left side click on "tax topics"

Scroll all the way down to "Local Property Tax " link

Then you reach the GRAAL page

"Table of Equalized Values" is the bottom link.

You will find also the "Coefficients of Deviation" and the history of "General Tax Rates by County and Municipality"

Enjoy!

2/18/2006 01:52:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/4726300.stm

OK, I like Grim but sometimes I think he is off the mark. Just when I think he is seeing men behind trees he proves me wrong.

This is an article on increasing retirement age, but also talking about 50 year mortgages.


CDF

2/18/2006 02:23:00 PM  
Blogger Metroplexual said...

Melchior,

I don't see what the value of knowing the appraisal ratios is other than to look at an assessment and seeing what it's yearly value on the market is.

BTW, those coefficients are used by county governments to assess taxes to the municipality. Because some towns never reassess (or very rarely, Like when a gun is pointed at them) they need these coefficients. I've worked in county Government so I know a little bit about what I am saying.

2/18/2006 02:46:00 PM  
Blogger Metroplexual said...

Cass,

Same thing happened on the census vacancies tables for 2005 Q4.

vacancies

2/18/2006 02:56:00 PM  
Blogger Metroplexual said...

Cass,

I meant too finish saying that their may indeed be a conspiracy. That table dissappeared

2/18/2006 02:58:00 PM  
Blogger Metroplexual said...

North East home vacancies up from 1.2% to 1.6% YOY. Is this a sign of excess units being built. It is the highest rate by region in the country.


Census

2/18/2006 03:22:00 PM  
Blogger melchior said...

Metro,

I do not get it. These coefficients are reviewed on a yearly basis, I assume the government is taking all the sales in a given city, compares each sale's price to each assessment value, extracts an average ratio and the standard deviation.

As a potential buyer, I indeed used that 2005 ratio (though computed from the 2004 sales) and apply it to the potential homes I am interested in. If the asked price is more than 25% of the adjusted assessed price, I would question the seller about his price and what justify it.

According to my little experience, few homes were sold at least in my price range and in my area of search at adjusted assessed value + 20%. So for me, these coefficients help me a lot in my search.

Enjoy

2/18/2006 03:49:00 PM  
Blogger Metroplexual said...

Melchior,

Fair enough. It still is another source of info on housing prices. I was aware that the state kept these records but not that they are online. Thanks for sharing.

2/18/2006 04:00:00 PM  
Blogger grim said...

Here is another one to ponder (in addition to the vacancy rates)..

The homeownership rate declined in 2005.

Started the year at 69.1%, ended at 69.0%. Peak of 69.2% was set in the fourth quarter of 2004. Now, the error is great enough to explain this one away, but it is certainly a trend worth watching.

grim

2/18/2006 04:43:00 PM  
Blogger Metroplexual said...

Grim,

Could BK's and lack of willing buyers account for that dip in ownership?

2/18/2006 05:02:00 PM  
Anonymous NJ Sucks said...

America's most dangerous 'housing bubble'

http://www.shns.com/shns/g_index2.cfm?action=detail&pk=HOUSING-BUBBLE-02-16-06

2/18/2006 06:04:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

NJ Sucks, good article. Much of what is covered in that article, is talked about here:

http://www.housingbubblecasualty.com/

2/18/2006 07:01:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

OK I know we've blown past this anonymous 10:19 comment but I just have to say enough already with the blather about how Americans have "other savings" besides money in the bank stuff.

Listen, the deal is that the Average american will take a whopping 55,000 into his/her retirement now from 401k savings - that is LOUSY. Couple that with the potential for negative home appreciation and tighter bankruptcy laws and you have the makings of a big, old pauper class.

Whichever boneheads want to remake social security should remember that even when given the choice, americans can't or won't save enough in retirement plans to live on - expecting them to invest in the stock market is sheer idiocy.

2/18/2006 07:19:00 PM  
Blogger Metroplexual said...

Anon 7:19,

Right with ya.

2/18/2006 08:20:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

anonymous 7:19

I couldn't agree more regarding Social Security. Did you know that the Bonehead-in-chief put the proposed privatization of Social Security into the latest budget, even though it received no support from Congress or the people? There's no bonehead like an arrogant bonehead, I always say!

2/18/2006 08:25:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon 7:19,
Can you elaborate on "the Average american will take a whopping 55,000 into his/her retirement now from 401k savings" ?
I'm not sure what you're saying here.

2/18/2006 09:28:00 PM  
Blogger grim said...

Former school gets back in session with classy condo project

People have debated what to do with Bloomfield's South Junior High School since the school closed nearly 20 years ago.

Some pushed for a condo complex or senior citizen housing and one plan had the district leasing the property to a private school for special-needs children.

...

Finally the fate of the 67-year-old building has been decided.

Instead of empty classrooms, loft-style condominiums will be housed in the historic Franklin Street building. The plan calls for 114 units with hardwood floors and granite countertops, ranging in size from 650 to 1,400 square feet, some of them rooftop penthouses.

2/19/2006 07:03:00 AM  
Blogger grim said...

WEST PATERSON - Construction of an adult community at the site of the Tilcon Quarry is moving full steam ahead despite, "minor problems," and borough officials hope to earn much-needed tax revenue from the development by next year.

A spokesman for K. Hovnanian Homes, the company building the 814-unit development for people over 55, said the project is "on schedule," despite minor weather delays.

...

So far, a water tank and the concrete foundations for three buildings have been built, and 73 units have been sold, Fenichel said. Prices start at about $400,000.

2/19/2006 07:07:00 AM  
Blogger grim said...

Link for that one:

Adult housing 'on track'

2/19/2006 07:08:00 AM  
Blogger Metroplexual said...

Grim,

Seeing how much of NNJ is becoming built out I don't see the wisdom of selling any municipal property. It is an accounting gimmick to stave off inevitable tax hikes. What do you do when 20-30 years down the road your older residents have died off or moved away and now you have a fresh bunch of young families. Bad planning, bad leadership imho.

2/19/2006 07:36:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Two,very unscientific observations:

- Just scanning Craigslist and it seems like the bubbles in Jersey City and Hoboken are starting to pop. Lots of people trying to sell.

- Again, scanning Foxtons, it seems like at least one in 10 or 1 in 5 homes are empty based on the photographs (no furniture to be seen, at all).

2/19/2006 08:57:00 AM  
Blogger grim said...

I'm also seeing quite a large number of empty homes on the GSMLS.

It makes me wonder one thing. How many homeowners have purchased homes, moved, but have not yet sold their homes.

One of the large builders, when questioned about contract cancellations, cited the fact that buyers were cancelling due to the fact that they were having 'problems' selling their homes.

This is a potentially significant issue that really hasn't been explored yet.

Caveat Emptor!
Grim

2/19/2006 09:23:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

People shouldn't read to much into the rise of hoboken listings - it is part of the usual post bonus suburban migration. Of course, it might be aided a bit by the impending opening of the Maxwell House development but even so, the number of for sale signs doesn't appear to be abnormally high for this season just yet.

2/19/2006 10:27:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wait a minute, I thought Wall Street bonuses would make the Hoboken market roar and otherwise make the town bubble-proof.

Now these bonuses are a cause of increased inventory?

(sitting here scratching head)

2/19/2006 01:00:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

well...if you had a choice,and a large bonus, would you live in NYC or hoboken? Alternately, would you choose summit/short hills or the like if you had kids, or hoboken? Given the transitional nature of the community and the poor school system, the rise in sales right now is not surprising. Come summertime, it might be a different story.

2/19/2006 01:27:00 PM  
Anonymous NJ Sucks said...

Today(Sunday) I was driving in Riverside Ave(the next exit after route 21 when driving in Route 3 towards NY) and I saw from 17-20 Open house signs in almost every intersection. And these in a 1.5-2 mile length.

Also I also found out that a cousin of mine just bought a 2 family house in East Rutherford for $440,000 and he makes about $25,000 to $35,000 as a substitute teacher. How is THIS possible??????

This is going to end SO BAD.

2/19/2006 03:14:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ignore the anonymous poster at 10:27. It's the same "bull" from the Kannekt (Hoboken) Real Estate Forum who keeps trying to convince others that the market is not tanking.

2/19/2006 03:27:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good point...anyone who offers an opinion contrary to your must be an evil realtor spy.

My only point was that the rise in hoboken listings at this point of the year is normal - couples with kids will list their properties now to be able purchase in the suburbs prior to schools starting.
People tied to the wall street bonus cycle also tend to sell now since they have a better grasp on their financial situation.

Singles / couples with a partner going back to grad school also list now to adjust for that change. Every year for the past 4 years i've seen the same behavior.

The big test for the hoboken real estate market will be when Maxwell House opens - filling the high price point - and velocity - mid town development with an estimated 1200 units - opens. I suspect those developements, with their first phase opening later this year (at least for Maxwell, not to sure whats up with velocity), will cause havoc with the market as they flood the market. Between that and quality of life issues (double parked cars everywhere, traffic in and out of town getting to unbearable , interesting shops / restaurants being replaced by chains), i agree that hoboken market could be in for a big shift.

2/19/2006 03:54:00 PM  
Blogger buy_lo said...

check out this survey:

http://FreeOnlineSurveys.com/rendersurvey.asp?sid=70ktgudrwurv4z8168740

2/19/2006 04:50:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The amount of homes for sale in Hoboken may or may not be greater than in the same period last year. I can't say since I don't know what the current number of listings are or what they were last year.

However, I can say that there are a huge number of open houses compared to last year, or any other time I can remember. My impression, given all the open houses, is that nothing is selling and that sellers are desperate to attract buyers. I don't think we are seeing a normal spring listing season inventory build, I think we are seeing:

1.Homes from as early as late August still on the market.
2.A huge supply of "starter" two bedrooms that must be sold because the owner has committed to buying in luxury type two bedrooms like the Maxwell.

2/19/2006 05:22:00 PM  
Blogger gravitymatters said...

today was the 1st time in weeks my wife was able to drag me (kicking & screaming of course) out to see some open sh*tboxes in bergen county.

pure entertainment....the 1st 3 we pulled up to, my wife didn't even bother getting out of the car. i just recall her mumbling something about crack smokers. :)

however the one she did get out to see (i remained in the car with my sleeping son) was an identical layout to another home we saw a few houses down the street last fall. we knew this other home sold for 710k (original list around 769k) & closed in Nov/Dec.

well my wife came back out after a few minutes & said don't even bother. i of coursed inquired why....to hear her tell me how she laid into the realtor. (so now i'm real interested, since she rarely loses her cool)

turns out they are asking 729k & it is a complete dump compared to the other home (which was not exactly the TAJ). my wife basicly tells the realtor how INSULTING it is to BUYERS that the owner (who has been trying to sell since last spring) would actually waste our time with that asking price....the place is a total redo. of course the broker tried to explain about all the upgrades (new carpet or something?) & how the place was sold last summer for 749k, but the buyer suddenly had to move back to Korea (can't make this stuff up) so the deal fell thru.

anyway, as my wife walks out the door she remarks how that price was from last summer & he should do his job & get the client to reduce the price to a more realistic level.

this truly made my day.

we also couldn't help but notice (besides all the open house signs) how much construction there is all over Bergen, as if there is a never ending demand for all these future mcmansions. really bizare stuff IMO.

lastly, GRIM (awesome blog!!!) i'd love to see a thread here devoted to husband/wife debates (arguments) over whether to overpay now (for family utility) or wait (& be unsettled) in hopes of getting more house for our $ further down the road.

2/19/2006 06:13:00 PM  
Anonymous Anth said...

You see the star ledger "special" this week? Outlook 2006 "Housing Industry living large"

This newspaper strongly needs a reality check or should be held to some sort of accountability for their press. They need to stop coupling solely with realtors and begin doing some true journalism (Sleuthing, gathering facts, etc) instead of collecting one-sided quotes. They put in 2010 "prediction/projections" for median price value, fucking crazy - Predicting 60-140k increases in median prices across the state.

WTF? The article by Tracey Porpora starts off "Despite the lack of available land, developers are building homes across northern NJ to try to keep up with the strong demand for new residential real estate". The first few words are enough to know that the article is garbage. This comes from a writer of such fine articles as "The Three Flirting Moves That Never Fail" and "My grandfather holds the Guinness World Record for his 475 spoon rests". This author is a frequent writer for "Contemporary Bride" and has no business reporting on Real Estate.

The whole damn thing made me sick to my stomach. It sickens me to see that the RE industry is using the press to pressure the market into irrational exuberance.

2/19/2006 06:39:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Regarding the hoboken market, and the debate with the other anonymous, I think think the issue is not with the crappy 2 bedrooms, but will be with large number of $1 million plus high end units that end up on the market due to Maxwell. Based on the people I know who are planning on moving to Maxwell when it comes, none of them live in a starter 2 bedroom.

Crappy 2 bedrooms with an easy NYC commute can almost always be sold at some price; the high end units will run into much stiffer competition from NYC.

I own a 3 bedroom in hoboken and from seeing the sales process in the like units, I am very glad that I have no plans on moving for the next 5 or 6 years due to my wife's career. Otherwise, I would gladly cash in and rent.

I think the big debate, at least in the local market here, is whether the weakness will come from the bottom or top. Unfortunalety for myself, I think the top will push the bottom down.

2/19/2006 07:21:00 PM  
Blogger bubble disciple said...

"It makes me wonder one thing. How many homeowners have purchased homes, moved, but have not yet sold their homes."

...probably quite a few.

I went to 5 open houses today and 2 of them were empty - these were not flipped houses either.

One had price reduced from 580 to 519; needs to drop at least another $50K in my opinion.

2/19/2006 07:25:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I only went to one open house today in Hoboken. The condo was empty as the owners had moved about a week ago.

2/19/2006 08:34:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"I think the big debate, at least in the local market here, is whether the weakness will come from the bottom or top. Unfortunalety for myself, I think the top will push the bottom down."

On the low end of the bubble dynamic in Hoboken, I think you have quite a few people in the under 30 crowd who "panic bought" over the past two years. They ended up with what they could afford, which was mostly conversions west of Willow, but ultimately overpaid. I think that some of these people are trying to cash out now; witness all the open house signs on Washington pointing west.

Also on at the low end, I think you probably have quite a few married couples with one or two kids who maybe bought 4 to 8 years ago and are trying to cash out now so they can buy a house in the 'burbs. They probably planned to buy in the 'burbs all along, but the fear of the bubble bursting has probably helped to accelerate any long term plans to leave Hoboken.

2/19/2006 09:15:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bloomfield's South Junior High School has sat vacant for 20 years. The windows have no glass in them and you can see the plaster peeling off of the walls through the windows.
For this property, it is positive for the town to sell it and get it on the tax rolls.
I don't know who would take the chance now and try to sells condos out of it.
For those who move into it, the Votech next door will allow for free headlight removal from their cars.

2/19/2006 10:55:00 PM  
Blogger Grim Ghost said...

The Real Estate Outlook section is a pure advertising section, the so-called reporter just an ad copywriter. Its not part of the news section of the apper.

2/20/2006 12:04:00 AM  
Blogger Richie said...

It's amazing; there are towns in NJ that don't have enough room for children in their schools, and Bloomfield has extra schools that they don't need.

So that means either their school system sucks, or theres not enough children in town to fill the schools.

2/20/2006 10:29:00 AM  
Blogger Metroplexual said...

Anonymous said...

Bloomfield's South Junior High School has sat vacant for 20 years. The windows have no glass in them and you can see the plaster peeling off of the walls through the windows.
For this property, it is positive for the town to sell it and get it on the tax rolls......

They could lease it. It is very difficuly and expensive to get the property needed for a school especially if the anti emminent domainers have their way

I don't know who would take the chance now and try to sells condos out of it.....

Right with you there.

For those who move into it, the Votech next door will allow for free headlight removal from their cars.

Is that a comment on it being a bad neighborhood? If so , funny! Or is it a service of the auto tech guys?

2/20/2006 10:33:00 AM  
Blogger Richard said...

in the south orange area i saw by far the most open house and for sale pointing signs during the past few years, most of them by weichert. unfortunately for the sellers weichert is doing them a disservice by asking for prices that usually are 10% above even the highest bubble price sold for last year. it's an obvious selling tactic which is just old and tired in today's shifting marketplace and will only serve to get their clients less foot traffic and ultimately money than they could've if competitively priced the first time around.

i expect to see the spring selling season to well at first (march) then lose momentum come late april and die a slow death through the rest of the year. next year will be the time to find some bargains, not this year.

2/20/2006 11:00:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What is going on with the old Demaio's Restaurant on Route 10?

2/20/2006 11:45:00 AM  
Blogger chicagofinance said...

If you don't NEED to be in this market to buy, I can't possibly fathom why you would be.

If you've been on the sidelines this long, it is not going to kill you to wait another 6 to 30 more months.

2/20/2006 12:51:00 PM  
Blogger Shailesh Gala said...

In NJ, if you see any new development, more than 60% to 70% are for ACTIVE ADULTS only. I do understand why people living in the Town want Senior Citizens (No children, no schooling cost to pay for). But my question is that isn't this discreminatory?

I know there are rules that builders cannot discreminate against Race, Gender etc.. But to my knowledge even Age is part of discremination criteria, right? Can't someone sue the Towns for approving Age Restricted Housing only?

2/20/2006 01:21:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Chicago Finance said: "If you've been on the sidelines this long, it is not going to kill you to wait another 6 to 30 more months."

Predictions are just "educated guesses." It is simply a gamble to wait for prices to drop ... they may or may not; and by what percentage? and for how long? In the meantime, if you are in the market to buy a house--NOT MAKE AN INVESTMENNT-- and find something you love..... why risk losing it while waiting for some hypothetical bottom in what will be just a dip-- perhaps a deep and wide dip, but just a dip. So in 30 months, you'll just be that much more behind the curve.

And for all those bubble lovers out there, I am NOT a realtor.

2/20/2006 01:38:00 PM  
Blogger Metroplexual said...

Shailesh Gala said...

In NJ, if you see any new development, more than 60% to 70% are for ACTIVE ADULTS only. I do understand why people living in the Town want Senior Citizens (No children, no schooling cost to pay for). But my question is that isn't this discreminatory?

I know there are rules that builders cannot discreminate against Race, Gender etc.. But to my knowledge even Age is part of discremination criteria, right? Can't someone sue the Towns for approving Age Restricted Housing only?


Sorry to say it is an exemption in the law written in 1995. the following link explains it and its implementation. Its our wonderful congress at work.

hud rules

2/20/2006 02:04:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don't mean to cheapen the dialouge but I received this in my fax today:

*Refinance Now and save thousands!!! - and we'll give you two airline tickets
Services include: Unlimited Cash Out - rates as low as 1% - -call today and ask about our mortgage repair and restoration loans.
Loan amount: $500,000 - Monthly Payment - $1608.20...et., etc.*

Of course, just your everyday low-end facsimile marketing which just about anyone would discount - I've gottent these before but this is the first one i received not geared toward the prospective buyer.

2/20/2006 03:22:00 PM  
Blogger InLibrisLibertas said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

2/20/2006 03:53:00 PM  
Blogger InLibrisLibertas said...

KARA HOMES ANNOUNCES QUICK DELIVERY HOME SPEC-TACULAR
SAVE FROM $20,000 TO $246,000 ON HOMES THROUGH FEBRUARY 28TH.

Kara Homes

2/20/2006 03:56:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

if you by a home at these prices you will be regretting it in 12- 18 months.

2/20/2006 04:35:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

anon 1:38 - From my point of view, even though you may not be looking at a house as an investment, how can you consider putting out hundreds of thousands of dollars down and not worry about if that x hundreds of thousands of dollars will not be valued at less?

The possibility at the moment that you could buy a house and watch your equity head south for years should be at least a concern.

If others have experienced what I have, and I’m looking for my first home, something ‘I love’ is no where in sight. Many houses I’ve seen have sat for months and have been reduced and sellers are motivated, two realtors reinforced this yesterday – I looked at 3 houses.

The market has probably allowed me too much time to put emotion aside and pull out a calculator to really, really look at the positive and negatives of what the next several years or more could hold for me and how a better window could benefit me.

2/20/2006 04:49:00 PM  
Blogger gravitymatters said...

anon 4:49 said:

"how can you consider putting out hundreds of thousands of dollars down and not worry about if that x hundreds of thousands of dollars will not be valued at less?"

ah...common sense vs emotion (anon 1:38 comment). which wins out? i'm sure spouses all over the bubble markets are actively debating this (IMHO).

2/20/2006 05:41:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon 1:38 here

I'm not saying forgo research about both the house and the neighborhood before spending hundreds of thousands of dollars but I'm also taking the long view. I wouldn't advise anyone to buy now if they plan on moving in a few years. But if you plan on living in the house for a long time (more than five years at least) then who cares what market fluctuations occur in 18-30 months.

The longer you live in a house the less the chance that you'll lose money, and if the decision to purchase is for housing rather than to realize a profit then you are ahead of the game--because you've also enjoyed your home for all those years, which is priceless.

I'm speaking from experience having bought a house in Hoboken in 1986 at supposedly the height of the then-boom and have just sold it for a VERY nice profit (with multiple above asking offers).

I think many of the posters on this blog are young and expect more instant gratification from their house purchases.

2/20/2006 06:01:00 PM  
Blogger gravitymatters said...

anon 6:01 said:

"But if you plan on living in the house for a long time (more than five years at least) then who cares what market fluctuations occur in 18-30 months."

problem is, things happen in life. even if you intend to stay long-term, you still may end up needing to sell short-term....which leads me to your final comment:

"I think many of the posters on this blog are young and expect more instant gratification from their house purchases."

the younger you are, the more potential for moving around (no firm roots in the ground yet) & also a higher probability of having little or no skin in the game (can you say exotic mortgage) when purchasing a home.

this can trap or chain the buyer to their home for many years if they cannot afford to bring a check to the closing.

just because things worked out well for you does not insure a happy ending (within 20 years) for the current buyer. as they say...past performance is no guarantee of future returns (although some realtors will tell you otherwise).

2/20/2006 06:29:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Regarding 'not caring about the price of a home if you intend to stay there for a long time', how does that figure into the mortgage budget, when homes have increased about 100% in the last few years, and salaries remain flat?

Homes are simply too expensive today, relative to incomes.

2/20/2006 07:48:00 PM  
Blogger Metroplexual said...

The last anonymous, gravity matters does not understand. they think paying alot for a house is normal. Readjustments happen and he will be proven wrong. dont worry it is coming sooner than later.

2/20/2006 08:50:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Gravitymatters
I would love to open a debate on your topic... I'm sure all the women are dying to move NOW and all the men want to wait. I am in the same situation and looking in Bergen too. Your story made me laugh and your wife gave me inspiration for next Sunday!
Karen

2/20/2006 09:09:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To David.

What Blog?

2/20/2006 09:53:00 PM  
Blogger gravitymatters said...

Karen
it's nice to know we're not alone. good luck & happy hunting this weekend.

we've only been renting for 7 months & my wife already wants to buy this spring (yesterday for that matter), to move for the start of the fall school year.

i'd personally like to rent for another couple (few) of years & see what happens...but i'd even settle for just 1 more year at this point to stay on the sidelines.

we shall see?

2/20/2006 10:06:00 PM  
Blogger gravitymatters said...

Metro

considering i agree with everything anon 7:48 (and yourself) said....

what is it you think i'll be proven wrong about???

just curious

2/20/2006 10:10:00 PM  
Anonymous NJ Sucks said...

I urge everybody to read the following article titled "Bubble with a Fuse". This could get MUCH worst that we might expect

http://www.thetrumpet.com/index.php?page=article&id=2050

2/21/2006 12:55:00 AM  
Blogger Metroplexual said...

Gravity Matters,

Along with grim, I just think the readjustment is going to be so big that in a few years if you have to sell you will be uside down on the loan. Patience is warrented here. I bought in the last go around (late 80's)with a bubble here in NJ,. and sold in 1999 just barely getting enough profit to cover my expenses. Many people I know didn't see prices recover until 2002.

Many on this blog think that it is atleast a 2-3 year wait for the real readjustment. BUt that is only my opinion, my wife is anxious as well.

2/21/2006 06:30:00 AM  
Blogger Metroplexual said...

NJ Sucks,

I don't think that article info is very good. Their number of $600 billion in resets is not for the next couple of years but is for this year. Next yeqar is around $1.3 Trillion. Making it closer to 2 trillion over the next couple of years. Which IMHO is wayyyyy scarier!

2/21/2006 06:45:00 AM  
Anonymous NJ Sucks said...

Metroplexual said...
"I don't think that article info is very good. Their number of $600 billion in resets is not for the next couple of years but is for this year. Next yeqar is around $1.3 Trillion. Making it closer to 2 trillion over the next couple of years. Which IMHO is wayyyyy scarier!"

If this is the case this means that people will try to refinance sooner than later and alot of them might find the door closed. Their only option will be to sell.

I bet you. Within the next 2 years alot of them will be in for a nasty surprise.

I personaly believe that the Information flowing on the Internet will bring the market down MUCH faster that in the early 90s since 80% of the people now do their house hunting online.

2/21/2006 07:36:00 AM  
Blogger grim said...

Sorry for the lack of updates over the past two days.. Had to deal with a nasty stomach flu. I'm finally back up on my feet now.

jb

2/21/2006 08:25:00 AM  
Blogger Richie said...

Indeed it is scary. I thought a lot about this over the weekend as a shook my head while looking at home prices. It's going to get ugly. Really ugly. The stock boom was one thing, people move their retirement accounts and some of their savings into buying stocks. This was money they already had.

When people buy homes, most of it is financed. Financed with funny money they didn't have in the first place. IO loans are for people who are comfortable taking risks.

The fundamentals for home ownership are non-existant today and for the past 2-4 years. Gravity will come into place pulling those home prices back to "normal" while leaving many people questioning themselves..

2/21/2006 08:41:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just do not see home prices falling that much in areas like Short Hills, Chatham, Madison and Summit. If anything I have noticed prices increasing. There are still a ton of people that are moving from the city to the burbs that I think do not really care. My fiance and I have been renting in Madison for the last 3 years and are ready to settle down but when you have idiots in Chatham selling their 4 room condos with 1 br and 1 bath for over 400k it is killing the market. I mean these places do not even have 1k sq feet and people are buying them. Yes, there are a couple around $325-$350k but those are still overpriced by at least 40%. If these idiots are willing to pay these prices (which they are)then the market in this area will never change.

2/21/2006 09:30:00 AM  
Anonymous DeisCane said...

I just found this blog, as we've reopened our house hunt to (mostly) Bergen County.

So, what's everyone's consensus on a place like Teaneck? Is it relatively protected by a bubble burst? We're looking in the 700k range. Thanks!

2/21/2006 09:39:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You're going to spend $700 to live in Teaneck?????? Do you have kids?
Karen

2/21/2006 09:51:00 AM  
Anonymous DeisCane said...

Yes, we have twin one year olds. We live in a Junior-4 in Manhattan and are rapidly running out of space, plus our lease is up in June.

2/21/2006 10:13:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Have you done research on the schools? I live two towns away. If you want to email me for more local info I wouldn't mind explaining it all. Kiwijacks@gmail.com

2/21/2006 10:17:00 AM  
Anonymous DeisCane said...

Yes, we've researched the schools somewhat, though not exhaustively. We do not plan to send the kids to public school, but we would like the option to be good enough to make our decision worthwhile. :-)
Also, of course, it's good for resale, once this bubble pops of course. ;-)
Thanks for the offer. I may take you up on it. What town are you in?

2/21/2006 10:32:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Grim, glad you're feeling better.

2/21/2006 10:48:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"If these idiots are willing to pay these prices (which they are)then the market in this area will never change."
First of all calm done take a deep breath. You said "idiots". Well just because someone does drugs or eats to much fast food does not force you to also.
It's irrational. Use some common sense. You want to COMPETE against a few irrational fools then you have to act like an irrational fool. Noone is forcing you to play their game.
Thinking sensibly is very difficult when lunacy is is running wild.Use your own independent thought processes instead of following the clueless masses.

2/21/2006 03:11:00 PM  
Blogger grim said...

Well said anon.

2/21/2006 05:27:00 PM  

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