Posted by: The Tim

Tim Ellis is the founder of Seattle Bubble. His background in engineering and computer / internet technology, a fondness of data-based analysis of problems, and an addiction to spreadsheets all influence his perspective on the Seattle-area real estate market.

72 responses to “You Can’t Keep a Good Huckster Down”

  1. alex

    This was pretty awesome. “I’ve sold you a problem, now I’ll sell you the fix for it!” :)

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  2. Real World Express

    Wonder what Tony Robbins is up to…

    (This comment a Gunky-Ripoff Presentation…)

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  3. LA Relo

    I can think of a better word than huckster…

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  4. BillE

    By LA Relo @ 3:

    I can think of a better word than huckster…

    I could at least try. But what I come up with wouldn’t be appropriate for this site.

    I like the guy’s picture. He looks like he should be trying to sell me a used car.

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  5. softwarengineer

    IMO, Even the Legitimate Financial Advisors Led Many Lemmings Over the Cliff

    As you’re finished with your tax paperwork many of you deducted the interest you pay on your homes’ [and possbly 2nd, 3rd, 4th, etc.] mortgages. Most of the “legitimate” financial advisors told us all to use our home as a cash machine and buy things like SUVs with it, that way the interest rates were lower and the interest was tax deductable.

    Trouble is, by the time we got to buying the 3rd SUV this way, we still hadn’t paid for the first one…LOL

    Now, all this lemming advice has a lot of older home owners lined up to jump off the underwater cliff into the sea with the newbies…..

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  6. No Name Guy

    RE: softwarengineer @ 5

    “Trouble is, by the time we got to buying the 3rd SUV this way, we still hadn’t paid for the first one…LOL”

    Yup….Credit cards, HELOCs, etc are no different than any other powerful tool. Used carefully and wisely, one can do amazing amounts of good. Used irresponsibly (or in ignorance of the potential danger), they can destroy the person wielding them. And what you describe – on the 3rd SUV while still owing on the first HELOC SUV – the….hmmm…shall we say “financial wizards”, who do this deserve to lose their homes for their foolishness, stupidity or greediness.

    I love to borrow, interest free, tons of money from the bank. Of course, I pay ‘em back in full at the end of the month when the credit card bill comes due. Heck, I’ve even used a HELOC to pay for a car (early 2000’s) – but when the car loan was 8% and the HELOC was 7% gross (~5 1/2% after tax write off) why not? Of course, I was disciplined enough (the key) to actually PAY IT OFF – and I’m still driving that car today – 235,000 miles so far and still going strong.

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  7. softwarengineer

    RE: No Name Guy @ 7
    Yes, Keeping Your Old Rig Going Does Save Considerable Money and Its Recycling Environmental Too :-)

    Especially, if the unit is more expensive. Hades, even with something very likely big breaking from 110-150K on almost all cars [ask a mechanic, not an owner, they all agree with me], repairing like a transmission or air conditioner, and taking a beating for little or no trade-in value on the next rig because you drove it forever….I estimate at least a 25-35% cost savings over buying new replacements every 100K today.

    I’d add though, newer used car prices went up about 50% the last several years for 2-3 YO ones with under 30K on them….meaning the cost savings of keeping an old one going forever went up too :-)

    Hades, I bought my newer low milage car about 4 1/2 years ago for about $2-3K more than its worth now, with 97K on it….LOL. BTW, American Big 3 cars don’t lose their value at all anymore like they used to years ago….LOL

    Keep up the good work…you’re my kind of investor!

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  8. ray pepper

    RE: Craig Blackmon @ 6 -An Attorney reminding people to get legal advice sounds like Steve Tytler reminding people that refinancing your existing mortgage is the best thing you can do for your family.

    Now I know Craig is a distinguished advertiser here now but please The Bubbleheads are pretty smart. Don’t let trolling start from your paid advertisers Tim.

    I kept myself in line over the last few years and rarely bash Agents anymore. I stopped telling people how brain dead they must be to list for 6% or let an Agent get 3% of the SOC.

    So please Craig…………Let the banner stay for Tim’s advertising but bring something to the table that will make people really wanna call you….

    btw Tim…How the heck did Craig get that blue background on his post? coincidence? Kind of stands out ya think??????

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  9. Kary L. Krismer

    RE: Craig Blackmon @ 6 – I’d also point out that getting that advice from a real estate broker (agent) is likely a licensing violation for that agent.

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  10. redmondjp

    And darnit, the “find somebody else’s empty home to squat in and claim that you own” business/website is already taken as well.

    I see a used uh I mean pre-owned car sales lot in this guy’s future . . .

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  11. ray pepper

    RE: The Tim @ 10

    When was the last time I was highlighted? Kary? Scotsman? Am I never worthy?

    Hmmm.

    Not buying it…I know your a fan of Craig and I like that he brings something new to the table. So much better then the Real Estate duo that came to light pitching their 1000 things to do in Seattle or whatever.

    But, Craigs post was just so one sided. if one is seriously thinking of walking contacting your Lender 1st is essential. Then I would add all the State/Federal agencies for assistance that are provided by the Lenders. I would then contact an accountant because the Attornies do not know SQUAT about the tax implications. The list goes on and on. The Atty would be at the end of the line.

    So I expect to be highlighted since I just saved your readers ALOT of legal fees because what I offer is FREE! (and quite obvious)

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  12. LocalYokel

    Calling the 70’s. Love his hair. Glad to know that the “feathered” look is still styling.

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  13. Kary L. Krismer

    RE: ray pepper @ 13 – There are attorneys that know tax. They’re called tax attorneys.

    I went to law school partly because tax was the most interesting area of accounting–my undergraduate major. I soon discovered that tax was one of the most boring areas of the law. That says a lot about the rest of accounting.

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  14. ray pepper

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 15 – not real estate attorneys Kary. It will be easier to pick up tooth piks with your butt cheeks then getting any worthy information out of real estate attorney’s on what the tax implications “could” be on your portfolio.

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  15. Kary L. Krismer

    RE: ray pepper @ 16 – I don’t know about that.

    Real estate attorneys should know the basics of the taxation of real estate transactions. I can’t imagine how they would avoid that. As a bankruptcy attorney I had to know that, as well as other tax matters that only pertained to bankruptcy (e.g. how your tax basis in property could be affected by your bankruptcy discharge, or how a foreclosure would affect their taxes). If something extremely complex comes up, you refer out to a tax attorney or just give them a call if you think that would suffice.

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  16. Kary L. Krismer

    By The Tim @ 17:

    This is from my May 2010 post on the subject:

    I gave some rather specific advice in post 17 of that thread, regarding the types of attorney.

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  17. ray pepper

    RE: The Tim @ 17 -dang it now yours is blue too!Absolutely not. Always I repeat always contact your lender 1st and throughout. These Lenders (especially the regionals) are offering deals of a lifetime, 5000 to short sale your home has become common place. There is just so much information out there right now on the legal aspects of walking away that relying on any ONE Attorney and paying them for their time is simply not prudent. HOPE Hotline 888 995 HOPE. Also a variety of nonprofit organizations experienced in homeownership counseling and **approved by HUD** would offer you so much more info in/re into your dilemma then any one Real Estate Atty. I would also recommend calls to the State Atty General. They have class actions on many Lenders “Wachovia/Wells” and they can advise you of the current status of litigation and refer you in the right direction.

    “Real estate attorneys should know the basics of the taxation of real estate transactions.”Come on Kary…”Should know the basic facts”…Yes they Should . If I’m going to pay an Atty I better get alot more then BASIC Facts! Good God!

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  18. mukoh

    RE: ray pepper @ 20 – Ray now thats complete crap. Anyone with any mortgage making any decision to let go, short sale, negotiate, dump their property witha note or two or even three attached should talk to an attorney, show their note, DOT, etc. Figure out who is first, second, who can chase you down for 6 years. HOPE line? WTH? You are kidding right?

    A friend of mine sold his fiance’s underwater condo in SEA $120k below mortgage price which was a 50% loss for the bank. Using an attorney who recommended a short sale agent who specialized in short sales. Attorney reviewed the paperwork so no chasers come later. It only took 4 months which is really fast for that type of process.

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  19. David Losh

    RE: mukoh @ 21

    You’re so funny. Only four months with no chaser?

    Though what you are saying could make some sense it is the home owner that has to intiate, and negotiate the short. An attorney can advise, but the home owner needs to educate themselves to know what questions to ask.

    People should always consult an attorney with the provision that they are aware of what’s at stake. You can spend thousands on attorney fees, when there is a lot of information available for free. Your lender is a source, and they will provide resources to you.

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  20. Scotsman

    RE: ray pepper @ 13

    I’ve been censored- that’s kind of a grey fade if I remember. Makes me proud. ;-)

    I don’t think I’ve said anything of merit yet though.

    Here’s a little tangential tidbit for those of you arguing over when to walk, and when to involve an attorney- or at least some legal information. Lots more people than currently expected will be walking when the full impact of this structural consideration is felt throughout the economy:

    “A study from Credit Suisse puts the net value of all the financial assets in the world (excluding real estate) at about $80 trillion ($117 trillion in financial assets minus $37 trillion in household debt). Our unfunded entitlement liabilities are about $100 trillion. Given that they exceed world financial wealth, I suspect that those liabilities are not going to be met.”

    Government checks will be bouncing, families burdened, and houses left to rot away.

    http://hotair.com/archives/2011/04/19/think-big-its-our-only-option/

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  21. mukoh

    RE: David Losh @ 23 – David. No chaser. 2k out of pocket. Thats that. Attorney guided through paperwork so there is no clipping for deficiency later. My friend is happy, getting married without baggage of a useless asset.

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  22. David Losh

    RE: mukoh @ 25

    Once again this is a public forum, and it makes no difference what your friend did, or didn’t do. Each circumstance is different and people, as Ray says, need to educate themselves.

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  23. David Losh

    RE: Scotsman @ 24

    Entitlements will be paid for, number one by fixing medicare, medicaid with single payer. Second Social Security is funded, the government told us so, and I pay it every year at tax time.

    My biggest concern is military. There is no funding source for that.

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  24. Krash

    So a few thoughts about your article The Tim, recently I was able to sit in one of the free workshops that the Financial Revival Group offers. While yes it seems at first that things are too good to be true, I honestly agreed with a lot of what was said in regards to getting out of the mortgage crisis that seems to be around the country.

    What really caught my attention though was the fact that Howard himself was facing the same issues that we all are in regards to his mortgage being more than what he owes on his properties.

    I got a chance to talk with Howard and decided that after seeing the alternatives as well as actual case-law and decided for myself that it was a plausible way out. I don’t think that it was overly preachy nor unfair instruction and gave me some things to think about in the weeks to come.

    Hopefully I can figure out what works best and that I do not face foreclosure however, I have not ruled out the options behind strategically foreclosing if all else fails.

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  25. Scotsman

    RE: David Losh @ 27

    Sorry, David- but they won’t be paid. There isn’t enough money in the world to pay for them at the current level of entitlement. That’s the point. It’s a huge amount of money that people have built into their expectations that won’t be met.

    When the money doesn’t come, what will people do? They will sell assets, everyone, at the same time- causing a crash. If I were you I’d have a plan that went beyond ” the government told me.”

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  26. David Losh

    RE: Scotsman @ 29

    I have never had any illusions that Social Security would be there for me. There is however money in the government. The government collect taxes specific to Social Security. That is the problem they have today. That’s the elephant.

    The military on the other hand has no funding source. That’s the other problem, the government is spending money on a whole host of things that are way outside what they are charged to do. The Department of Commerce comes to mind. A lot of things come to my mind that can be done away with other than Social Security.

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  27. whatsmyname

    By Scotsman @ 24:

    RE: ray pepper @ 13

    I’ve been censored- that’s kind of a grey fade if I remember. Makes me proud. ;-)

    I don’t think I’ve said anything of merit yet though.

    Here’s a little tangential tidbit for those of you arguing over when to walk, and when to involve an attorney- or at least some legal information. Lots more people than currently expected will be walking when the full impact of this structural consideration is felt throughout the economy:

    “A study from Credit Suisse puts the net value of all the financial assets in the world (excluding real estate) at about $80 trillion ($117 trillion in financial assets minus $37 trillion in household debt). Our unfunded entitlement liabilities are about $100 trillion. Given that they exceed world financial wealth, I suspect that those liabilities are not going to be met.”

    Government checks will be bouncing, families burdened, and houses left to rot away.

    http://hotair.com/archives/2011/04/19/think-big-its-our-only-option/

    OMG, according to a study at our house, my minor daughter has only about $5,000 in the bank, but her unfunded lifetime food and shelter requirements are many times that. Thank you for alerting me to this incredible danger.

    But there is so much more to be thankful about when I read the whole link. Think how we could free the destitute to start their own businesses once they are freed of the worry of excessive taxes and regulation. What strides in wealth we could achieve if our few mega-wealthy could capture most of the government’s assets at a pittance. The case is well laid out and pretty. The only question? Where is the fabulous wealth of the 3rd world countries who have followed this plan for the last 100+ years?

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  28. Jillayne Schlicke

    Oh my. I’d really like to go to one of the upcoming workshops. Anything with the words “revivalist” really gets me emotionally interested so I just throw logic out the window….but I’m washing my hair that night.

    I wonder if they’re all state licensed? Sure sounds like there’s some fee-for-service stuff going on up there in Arlington.

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  29. Jillayne Schlicke

    I show that Financial Revival Group is licensed at this location:

    1421 Broadway, Everett WA 98201

    Howard Bono has a cancelled real estate license
    Barb Bono is also showing in connection with that company name.

    Barb Bono has an active appraiser license: “BB’s Appraisal.” Cute.

    The 1421 Broadway building has been foreclosed and is being marketed as bank-owned.

    Interestingly, Old West Mortgage shares the same location as 1421 Broadway.

    Let’s see if there’s an active license involved.
    It looks like Howard has an active LO license through American Pacific Mortgage DBA Old West.

    So what we have here is a loan originator probably doing either short sale negotiating or loan modifications for a fee. That’s my guess.

    The website is trying to attract Realtors and LOs, probably asking them to refer clients to him.

    Well you all know how I feel about short sale negotiators and the loan mod types. Feeding them to zombies would be my first choice.

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  30. ray pepper

    RE: mukoh @ 21 -Dang..Still no blue highlight and I even included the 888 Hope #..Geeze and the State Atty General. This blue highlighted thing is a SHAM.Mukoh…spend your money (and your friends) on good Attorneys. They need the money more then anyone. Do you know that a high % of Attorneys have student loans they are servicing that exceed 100k? True!! They need help paying them off BIG TIME!

    I will reiterate..If you are gonna walk do your own DD first. You will find out so much more information that most Atty’s may not even know. When questions are left unanswered in your skull then seek additional help. You just may find the people with the answers are NOT Attorneys at all.

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  31. mukoh

    RE: ray pepper @ 34 – I don’t care what my attorney for example services, he provides me with services with my LLCs, I don’t care what my accountant services he provides me services that I DO NOT HAVE TIME TO LEARN!!!. You try filing corp returns for 5+ corps.

    These people are professionals and deal with this as an advocate on your side and are there to represent only YOUR interests. A $300 or whatever hour or two consult before going into potentially a situation where you are signing 20+ pages of BS that you can’t read through. Good luck. Some people have the time on their hands some don’t.

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  32. David Losh

    RE: mukoh @ 35

    You are so funny. “These people are professionals!!!” I threw the excalamation points in there for Ray.

    If you don’t know what you are doing then don’t do it.

    Again. this is a public forum. An attorney or accountant can answer your questions. You should have some idea what questions to ask before you start paying the money.

    Ray is very correct that a home owner should talk with the lender, get a copy of the loan documents, and do soem due diligence before starting in with an attorney, or accountant. There is a lot of information out there, but it’s best to start with your loan servicer. You are also paying them.

    “this as an advocate on your side and are there to represent only YOUR interests” This was another GEM, don’t believe it. I like my accountant just fine, I also have a couple of attorneys who I consult. I also read whatever I can in order to know what to ask. These are nice guys, but they will cover thier asses as quick as give me advice.

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  33. Scotsman

    RE: whatsmyname @ 31

    For what it’s worth I happen to disagree with the author’s analysis. One problem is that she’s apparently not familiar with the concept of NPV (net present value) or chose to ignore it. That’s surprising, as she is a retired intelligence officer. But the point remains, there isn’t enough liquid or semi-liquid wealth in the world to pay the NPV (current value) of entitlement commitments.

    ” my minor daughter has only about $5,000 in the bank”

    I’m sorry to hear that- it means she is starting her young life over $30,000 in the hole as of 2009. By the time this is over it could easily be over twice that amount, and her earning capability diminished. With say $60,000 of her future earnings already committed to existing federal debt, let alone new ongoing federal, state, and city/county funding there won’t be much left over for food and shelter. Wise up. Math’s a b*tch.

    http://www.data360.org/dsg.aspx?Data_Set_Group_Id=273

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  34. Scotsman

    RE: Jillayne Schlicke @ 33

    Sounds to me like they were (are) working all the pieces of the puzzle- “getting rich in real estate!”

    I’ll be watching for their late night T.V. infomercials. ;-)

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  35. David Losh

    RE: mukoh @ 35

    Last, but not least is the 5 LLCs. You can put each project into a seperate LLC, along with your business, as another, or whatever.

    It really makes no difference. Ray defaults, you default, the LLC defaults, it makes no difference. The end result is you either make money or you don’t.

    You have a set amount of economic life.

    Number one I partner with people or consult. It makes no difference to me because there is always more money. My partners always make money. It’s a curse.

    Second is that you have to be out there anyway. I love going to court but no one wants to go to court with me. It’s cheaper just to show up and get the matter resolved. Everything is negotiable.

    Third, and foremost is never trust anybody. You never trust an attorney to advocate for you. The attorney is in business to make money. I’m in business to make money. My accountant is a nice guy, and gives me a lot of his time, but he is in business to make money.

    I make money for them. I’m there making money for them. In return they answer my questions.

    So calm down, and try to learn something. Ray is giving you great advice.

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  36. ray pepper

    RE: David Losh @ 39

    Wow David…thats very nice of you. I always give great advice. In fact I believe I ALWAYS give the BEST advice. Would you expect any less from me? Yet, I never get my entries in blue tint…I’ll say it again………This color tinting bit is a S H A M !

    I think I will initiate immediate corrective action and SKIP over highlighted posts. Unless of course its Steve Tytler. I’m still waiting for his return or hopefully the arrival of that Mack “don’t mess with me Ray” character who apparently is “The Greatest Real Estate Agent in the World”

    http://www.yelp.com/biz_photos/AEofBSJ9u6wuVYRLgah_cA?select=GblVFCeMi_7y_XBSkF8KlA

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  37. Scotsman

    RE: ray pepper @ 40

    I too wish Mack would drop by for a little conversation. I’d love to hear his ideas on where real estate is going. But by the looks of things we’d have to pry him away from the Claim Jumper:

    http://media3.px.yelpcdn.com/bphoto/xX0jCLlM19qKVpC960Eerw/l

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  38. ElPolloLoco

    Speaking of legal advice, IANAL, but is it really all that safe to call out someone by name as a ‘huckster’ on the Internet these days?

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  39. LocalYokel

    By mukoh @ 35:

    RE: ray pepper @ 34 – I don’t care what my attorney for example services, he provides me with services with my LLCs, I don’t care what my accountant services he provides me services that I DO NOT HAVE TIME TO LEARN!!!. You try filing corp returns for 5+ corps.

    These people are professionals and deal with this as an advocate on your side and are there to represent only YOUR interests. A $300 or whatever hour or two consult before going into potentially a situation where you are signing 20+ pages of BS that you can’t read through. Good luck. Some people have the time on their hands some don’t.

    You must be an MBA, with them fancy MBA ideas (I have a secret shame, too).
    The advice you are reading from David and Ray is what I call affectionately,
    “Gray Hair” Advice, because you need to have some gray hairs to have
    enough life experience to know what the hell is going on.
    Sorry, can’t read that kind of stuff from HBR or McKinsey Quarterly.

    My best investment of my time and effort was to be associated with
    as many “gray hairs” business folks with 30+ years of experience.
    Learn to filter the bullsh*t and glean some awesome advice.
    Be lazy mowing the lawn or washing the car, but never be lazy
    reading any documents you have to sign.

    @ Ray and David
    Great advice. I have too tangoed with Mack “I am from the mean streets of the
    Upper West Side of Manhattan”.

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  40. Kary L. Krismer

    By ray pepper @ 20:

    RE: The Tim @ 17 -dang it now yours is blue too!Absolutely not. Always I repeat always contact your lender 1st and throughout. These Lenders (especially the regionals) are offering deals of a lifetime, 5000 to short sale your home has become common place. There is just so much information out there right now on the legal aspects of walking away that relying on any ONE Attorney and paying them for their time is simply not prudent. . . ..

    “Real estate attorneys should know the basics of the taxation of real estate transactions.”Come on Kary…”Should know the basic facts”…Yes they Should . If I’m going to pay an Atty I better get alot more then BASIC Facts! Good God!

    First, you would recommend dealing with a bank, and taking their offer prior to consulting an attorney and an accountant? And you think the legal information available on the Internet is accurate? Both those thoughts are rather misguided.

    Second, I said basic law, not basic facts. It’s up to the client to fill in the attorney on the basic facts, but a real estate attorney should know the basics of taxation on real estate transactions. If not they can refer it out or ask another attorney.

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  41. ray pepper

    RE: Scotsman @ 41

    brutal…………but I love it..

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  42. Kary L. Krismer

    By mukoh @ 21:

    RE: ray pepper @ 20 – Ray now thats complete crap. Anyone with any mortgage making any decision to let go, short sale, negotiate, dump their property witha note or two or even three attached should talk to an attorney, show their note, DOT, etc. .

    The “etc.” can be very important. I mentioned in the other thread seeing an attorney who can look at the validity of the entire transaction, perhaps for a truth in lending transaction. A bit off point, but there used to be an attorney in Seattle who would take on collection agencies for collection act violations. I once saw him take a $1,500 claim against his client and turn it into a sizable judgment against the collection firm and the attorney representing them. It might not have been collectible–I don’t know.

    But the point is your bank or loan servicer isn’t going to tell you that. They also aren’t going to tell you that you could file a Chapter 13 and keep your house while walking away from the $50,000 owing on your second loan.

    The problem finding an attorney is finding one that is familiar with several different things. I don’t know any that have a working familiarity with all the areas, but hopefully they would recognize when to send something out.

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  43. whatsmyname

    RE: Scotsman @ 37
    “For what it’s worth I happen to disagree with the author’s analysis.”

    Super. Should I be more pleased that you weren’t gulled by the analysis, or more concerned that you would employ an argument you knew to be faulty without disclaimer?

    “One problem is that she’s apparently not familiar with the concept of NPV (net present value) or chose to ignore it. That’s surprising, as she is a retired intelligence officer. But the point remains, there isn’t enough liquid or semi-liquid wealth in the world to pay the NPV (current value) of entitlement commitments.”

    I didn’t see from the source whether we are talking NPV or gross payout, but either way this is a cash vs. cash flow comparison. Similarly, most people, and particularly young people, don’t have the liquid or near liquid assets to pay off their mortgage (or NPV of their future rents, or the NPV of their future groceries for that matter). The “in the world” bit is a cute, but irrelevant distractor.

    “I’m sorry to hear that- it means she is starting her young life over $30,000 in the hole as of 2009. By the time this is over it could easily be over twice that amount, and her earning capability diminished. With say $60,000 of her future earnings already committed to existing federal debt, let alone new ongoing federal, state, and city/county funding there won’t be much left over for food and shelter. Wise up. Math’s a b*tch.”

    The idea that we are individually responsible for equal portions of the national debt is a complete canard, albeit one that the eat the poor wing of the conservative movement would like to make a reality. It is doubly dishonest to conflate general budget funding with SSI and medicare funding as is generally the implication when conservatives talk “entitlements”.

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  44. Scotsman

    RE: whatsmyname @ 47

    “It is doubly dishonest to conflate general budget funding with SSI and Medicare funding as is generally the implication when conservatives talk “entitlements”.

    Why? The government does it. You’re not one of those who believes in the SSI trust fund, are you? It’s all just revenue to the feds, and it and much more gets spent every year. You may feel it’s a “canard” but it is a useful way to get a handle on just how much debt is out there. I’d say it’s no more of a canard than the idea that your daughter will never have to pay because we’ll be “taxing the rich.” They ain’t that rich. Remember my post the other day that even if we took all of the personal income over $100K it still wouldn’t cover the current deficit? Yes, it really is that bad, and it will have to change in drastic ways.

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  45. What's my name

    RE: Scotsman @ 48
    “Why? The government does it. You’re not one of those who believes in the SSI trust fund, are you? It’s all just revenue to the feds, and it and much more gets spent every year. You may feel it’s a “canard” but it is a useful way to get a handle on just how much debt is out there.”

    SSI is and has been self funding for what, 70 years? It doesn’t, and never has increased the defiticit. It could be expanded, i.e. eliminate income caps, or apply to all income to prevent the crossover from happening. It makes a person wonder why that particular item would be such a flashpoint for people supposedly concerned about the debt while they ignore items which really have increased the debt, say the Bush tax cuts for example.

    ” I’d say it’s no more of a canard than the idea that your daughter will never have to pay because we’ll be “taxing the rich.” They ain’t that rich. Remember my post the other day that even if we took all of the personal income over $100K it still wouldn’t cover the current deficit? Yes, it really is that bad, and it will have to change in drastic ways.”

    I never said my daughter wouldn’t be paying on the debt, just that I wouldn’t expect it to be on a par with what comes from a wall street bankster pulling in a $35MM bonus. Hope this doesn’t offend anyone’s libertarian sense of fairness. I did see your post; I didn’t see your proof.

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  46. David Losh

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 46

    The collection attorney routinely goes after the collection practices. The client gets like $500 of monetary consideration while the attorney fees are in the tens of thousands. I think it’s something like a going rate of $350 per hour, judgments in the $23K range. It’s also interesting to me that the courts have capped some judgments and he has negotiated for a higher fee.

    The fact is, he is suing for his own fees. You win some and you lose some. He’s not talking his clients that at the first few meetings.

    I have an attorney out in Everett, great guy, who is always on my side, no matter what. I’m always right even when I’m wrong. That is a part of his job.

    A Chapter 13 bankruptcy may not be the best for every one. A person can also refuse to pay. A person can contest the debt, make settlement offers, or skip the country.

    In the mukoh example he is saying he has a no chaser. Well what does that look like? Is that a guarantee? I agree some one should use an attorney if they short sell, but to me the short sale is a waste of every one’s time, for a lot of reasons. The number one reason is I can’t think of why a lender would sign away the right to collect in the future if there wasn’t something seriously wrong with the Note, or Notes to begin with.

    I understand that you advocate for a shorter short sale process, but to me I think people should take a class action approach to these home loans. The problem is so pervasive, it is such a huge drain on our global economy, that in my opinion playing ridiculous games with a lender, any lender, is signing away your rights.

    I just want to be clear that this post is high lighting a practice of helping under water home owners. It’s a scam, short selling is a huge scam, and involving attorneys should be for the benefit of protecting the home owners rights.

    The Catch 22 is a home owner needs to know their rights. You pay the servicer so they are a resource. There are federal resources. Your Note is a resource, and all that you have paid into that Note gives the home owner a legal claim to a bundle of rights that far exceeds some swindle by that device.

    People need to know they have rights before they start signing them away, once again.

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  47. Scotsman

    RE: What’s my name @ 49

    “SSI is and has been self funding for what, 70 years? It doesn’t, and never has increased the defiticit”

    Cash flow for SSI is currently negative, and is expected to remain so. As such, it does add to the deficit. Time to catch up.

    http://washingtonexaminer.com/blogs/beltway-confidential/social-security-cash-flow-suddenly-negative

    http://www.economicpolicyjournal.com/2010/03/social-security-is-going-cash-flow.html

    http://dailyreckoning.com/social-security-makes-history-with-negative-cashflow/

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  48. deejayoh

    By What’s my name @ 49:

    RE: Scotsman @ 48
    SSI is and has been self funding for what, 70 years? It doesn’t, and never has increased the defiticit. It could be expanded, i.e. eliminate income caps, or apply to all income to prevent the crossover from happening. It makes a person wonder why that particular item would be such a flashpoint for people supposedly concerned about the debt while they ignore items which really have increased the debt, say the Bush tax cuts for example.

    OMG. That sounds like my dad, telling me he’s just getting back what he paid in… The social security “trust fund” is also known as the portion of US Debt owned by the treasury. And in order to maintain the program, you need to have an exponentially expanding source of funding (at current spending levels) or ratchet down spending

    I’ve always just viewed as part of my total tax rate. Never really expected to get anything back. That way I can maybe be pleasantly surprised.

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  49. David Losh

    RE: deejayoh @ 52RE: Scotsman @ 51

    I’ll say it again because you are pointing out the fact Social Security has a funding source. Social Security has a dedicated funding source with deep roots in Congressional Legislation. It’s been repeatedly reaffirmed.

    The military budget that is such a scared cow has no funding source. Congress has repeatedly repudiated the funding of foreign wars with claims they are unConstitutional.

    I could go down a long list of funded government programs, especially in the name of National Security that can be redirected to Social Security. The war on drugs comes to mind, and our global commitment to protecting oil interests are two perpetual net losses to the American people that actually drive up consumer costs.

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  50. Tim

    I think the concept of picking up toothpicks with your buttcheeks deserves a thread of it’s own.

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  51. What's my name

    RE: Scotsman @ 51
    Funny what a depression will do to a payroll tax. Score one for you on keeping current. Still notwithstanding the current and relatively miniscule effects on the current deficit, total receipts collected still far outweigh total benefits paid meaning SSI has not contributed to the debt on a global basis, but rather the reverse. I also notice that the fetish with killing SSI is many decades older than Q1 2010. Your argument still stinks of bad faith.

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  52. What's my name

    RE: deejayoh @ 52
    Your Dad likely is just getting back what he put in. He’s been getting mostly paid from SSI receipts rather than the “trust fund” treasuries. But so long as you bring it up, I am sure most Americans would be less sanguine than yourself to think that there should be a regressive surtax on the lowest paid Americans – and that is was fraudulently obtained. Is there some reason that the full faith and credit of the USG should be less in effect for American workers than for wall street vampires and foreign capital? Sure changes need to be made. For example, so long as people are arguing that it is merely a tax, we should certainly collect it on all income.

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  53. What's my name

    RE: What’s my name @ 56
    “Your comment is awaiting moderation”
    Gee, I thought it was pretty moderate already. I may sometimes disagree with deejayoh, but I certainly respect him.

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  54. deejayoh

    By What’s my name @ 56:

    RE: deejayoh @ 52
    Your Dad likely is just getting back what he put in. He’s been getting mostly paid from SSI receipts rather than the “trust fund” treasuries. But so long as you bring it up, I am sure most Americans would be less sanguine than yourself to think that there should be a regressive surtax on the lowest paid Americans – and that is was fraudulently obtained. Is there some reason that the full faith and credit of the USG should be less in effect for American workers than for wall street vampires and foreign capital? Sure changes need to be made. For example, so long as people are arguing that it is merely a tax, we should certainly collect it on all income.

    Interesting, data on this is surprisingly hard to find. But I did find this comparison (granted, but the Cato Institute) showing that for a 65 year old retiree as of 1994 – the IRR for expected benefits was between ~9 and 11%. That’s after tax benefts vs. payments over time. By comparison, the long run average return on the t-bills into which the trust fund was invested was in the 4-5% range. So (assuming the analysis is correct) it seems to provide support that the system pays out more than it takes in (via payments and interest).

    As for people’s view of the system, I am not sure I agree that people would be that upset. Americans pretty faithfully comply with requirements to pay their taxes – especially when compared to other countries. I don’t know what it would take to change that. We’ve had unpopular wars and crooked politicians and that doesn’t seem to change things.

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  55. Scotsman

    RE: deejayoh @ 58

    I don’t have a link but I seem to remember that most current retirees have received the annuity value of their lifetime contributions within three years of retirement. Thought of another way, they’ve gotten it all back, with interest, in less than three years. The remaining 7-8 years of average lifespan are funded by the “ponzi” component of social security- the three working members of the population that support each retiree.

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  56. whatsmyname

    By Scotsman @ 59:

    RE: deejayoh @ 58

    I don’t have a link but I seem to remember that most current retirees have received the annuity value of their lifetime contributions within three years of retirement. Thought of another way, they’ve gotten it all back, with interest, in less than three years. The remaining 7-8 years of average lifespan are funded by the “ponzi” component of social security- the three working members of the population that support each retiree.

    Interesting assertion. Although I am more than 10 years from “full retirement age”, each year the SSA sends me a statement which shows what I and my employers have contributed, and what my expected payout would be. Perhaps you are not old enough that SSA sends these to you, or perhaps you have never needed gainful employment. My 2008 statement showed an expected payout at “full retirement age”. The expected payout would equal my 2008 paid in after 6.2 years. This, of course includes no interest on payments paid in dating back to 1974, and also does not include 13 years of additional payments in yet to come at that point. I think that your remembered source is, well, wrong.

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  57. Scotsman
  58. Jillayne Schlicke

    Update: I’m having coffee w/Howard next Wed because I’d like to know what’s going on up there in Arlington. Don’t worry…I will leave word w/my kids as to when and where in case I don’t come home. ;)

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  59. David Losh

    RE: Jillayne Schlicke @ 62

    My question is why? He left a comment on another thread asking for a private chat. Why not hash it out here?

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  60. Jillayne Schlicke

    Hi David,

    Not everyone’s a blogger or understands how to use blogs and comments. Not everyone wants to jump into the blog comment fire. I don’t know his motivation or reasons why he’s not on here defending himself. I’ll need a cup of coffee at about that time of day and he’s buying.

    I DO care about what’s going on up there so that when ppl ask me, I can respond with knowledge. Maybe I can convince him to be more transparent about it on his site so that it doesn’t take a cup of coffee to figure it out. Or maybe that’s his intent/motive.

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  61. Howard Bono

    I tried to post on the site the day the article was put up. It was censored and never posted. I just thought this was a one sided blog site. Thanks for the extra hits on my site though. Anytime you want me involved in a discussion on this, I’m in.

    Jillayne, I am looking forward to coffee tomorrow.

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  62. Scotsman

    RE: Howard Bono @ 65

    I very much doubt you were censored. Tim is very, very tolerant of any criticism, even that directed at him. The worst offenses- foul language and direct personal attacks, will typically only get you a fade with no vowels- but the comment still appears. Try again.

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  63. David Losh

    RE: Howard Bono @ 65

    Well, the site has had that problem of not posting comments for a couple of months. It happens occasionally, it does happen to me from time to time.

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  64. Jillayne Schlicke

    Met with Howard today and here’s the scoop.

    It’s a fee-for-service business model offering help for people who are in financial distress/underwater on their home and are thinking about walking away and need help sorting through all their options.

    They DON’T do loan mods or short sale negotiating.
    They DO provide the homeowners with legal counseling from an attorney and all kinds of other counseling that the homeowner may need such as getting tax questions answered from a CPA, getting bankruptcy questions answered from a bankruptcy attorney, and so forth.

    Remember a few years ago when You Walk Away entered the scene? The problem with that model was the fee was really high and all the person received was a kit in the mail.

    The difference here is that what Howard’s company is doing is providing face to face hand-holding for people who need to figure out what to do, whether it’s a loan mod, short sale, bankruptcy, foreclosure, and so forth.

    There are three big reasons why I like what he’s doing:

    1) Homeowners are referred to an attorney for legal Q&As.
    2) Homeowners are coached on what to do if they decide to short sell BEFORE the Realtor gets involved. Some homeowners end up with Realtors who don’t know how to care for these clients.
    3) Homeowners can also receive mental health counseling to help them through the transition phase. Yes, yes we talk a lot about the logical/rational side of foreclosure but in all practicality, homeowners sometimes do need help making the transition through the emotional letting go phase of their lives so that they CAN make a good rational decision.

    What Howard is doing is interesting and creative and he has an attorney advising him every step of the way.

    I gave him some suggestions on how to send a more direct message via his website so visitors can get a clear picture of the services offered.

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  65. David Losh

    RE: Jillayne Schlicke @ 69

    I’ve been waiting all day for this update, because it could be an important resource.
    Thanks

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  66. GuyFawkesLives

    RE: ray pepper @ 13

    You cannot be serious about “contacting your lender first” bullsh**?

    “Um, hello, please get ready to begin to steal my house because I’m getting ready to default.”

    That is the stupidest piece of “advice” I’ve heard yet.

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  67. GuyFawkesLives

    BTW, Bono just hired an attorney, Jeff Jared, who got himself into a bit of trouble when he acted as “trustee.” Jared allegedly harassed the homeowner enough to face the tribunal. He was sued for the tort of outrage for “extreme and outrageous” behavior and infliction of “severe emotional distress” in his attempt to collect a debt.

    http://docs.justia.com/cases/federal/appellate-courts/ca9/09-60000/09-60000-2011-04-18.pdf

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