NWMLS: Closed sales plummet, listings still scarce

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January market stats have been published by the NWMLS. Here’s a quick excerpt from their press release:

Home Buyers Still Competing for Sparse Inventory in Western Washington, Driving Up Prices – Especially for Sought-After Condominiums

“The Seattle area real estate market hasn’t skipped a beat with pent-up demand from buyers is stronger than ever,” remarked broker John Deely in reacting to the latest statistics from Northwest Multiple Listing Service. The report on January activity shows a slight year-over-year gain in pending sales, a double-digit increase in prices, and continued shortages of inventory.

“The decline in sales last month can’t be blamed on the holidays, weather or football. It’s simply due to the ongoing shortage of housing that continues to plague markets throughout Western Washington,” said OB Jacobi, the president of Windermere Real Estate.

Bummer for home salespeople that they can’t use the “football” excuse they usually throw out in January. Not that there’s really anything in these latest numbers for them to be concerned about.

Now let’s dive into the numbers for January.

CAUTION

NWMLS monthly reports include an undisclosed and varying number of
sales from previous months in their pending and closed sales statistics.

Here’s your King County SFH summary, with the arrows to show whether the year-over-year direction of each indicator is favorable or unfavorable news for buyers and sellers (green = favorable, red = unfavorable):

January 2018 Number MOM YOY Buyers Sellers
Active Listings 1,243 +6.4% -20.8%
Closed Sales 1,259 -39.9% -20.4%
SAAS (?) 1.01 +17.4% +26.1%
Pending Sales 1,747 +19.7% -9.9%
Months of Supply 0.99 +77.0% -0.5%
Median Price* $628,388 -1.0% +19.7%

Inventory is at its lowest January level ever, and new listings were only barely above last year’s record-low level. Despite having nearly the same number of new listings as last year, closed sales and pending sales are both down considerably. Meanwhile, prices are up nearly twenty percent year-over-year.

Here’s your closed sales yearly comparison chart:

King County SFH Closed Sales

Closed sales fell forty percent between December and January. Last year over the same period closed sales were down twenty-seven percent. Year-over-year closed sales were down twenty percent. That’s a pretty big decline. It will be interesting to see if sales pick up in the next few months or keep dropping.

King County SFH Pending Sales

Pending sales were up twenty percent from December to January, and were down ten percent year-over-year.

Here’s the graph of inventory with each year overlaid on the same chart.

King County SFH Inventory

Inventory rose six percent from December to January, and was down twenty-one percent from last year. Total on-market listings are the lowest level for any January on record.

Here’s the chart of new listings:

King County SFH New Listings

New listings were up just 0.3 percent from a year ago—a whopping six more homes hit the market this January compared to January 2017.

Here’s the supply/demand YOY graph. “Demand” in this chart is represented by closed sales, which have had a consistent definition throughout the decade (unlike pending sales from NWMLS).

King County Supply vs Demand % Change YOY

The drop in closed sales is actually pretty sudden and severe in this chart. The last time the year-over-year change in closed sales was anywhere near this low was late 2010.

Here’s the median home price YOY change graph:

King County SFH YOY Price Change

Year-over-year price changes shot up to their highest level since March 2016, nearly hitting twenty percent again.

And lastly, here is the chart comparing King County SFH prices each month for every year back to 1994 (not adjusted for inflation).

King County SFH Prices

Down slightly from December and currently about $30k below the all-time high hit last July.

January 2018: $628,388
July 2007: $481,000 (previous cycle high)

Here’s the article from the Seattle Times: King County housing market kicks off 2018 even hotter than before, as Seattle breaks price record


About 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.

771 comments:

  1. 501

    RE: N @ 497 – Probably related to the percentage of distressed properties and not accounting for that in the “values.”

  2. 502
    uwp says:

    RE: Anonymous Coward @ 494

    The first one seems pretty typical for a house sold at $475k in 2005. Seattle median has probably almost doubled since then, so 475-910 not that crazy. Their agent just under-priced (IMHO), although it seems to have worked out.

    That 2nd one is more crazy to me: 70% over last sale (in 2015) without any noticeable updates. Almost 20% per year.

  3. 503
    Marc says:

    Deerhawke & Kmac,

    I’d like your opinions (and anyone else’s with relevant and very recent experience) on construction material and labor costs. I just read the piece below on lumber prices reaching all time highs and I’m curious how things like this are impacting our local market. Is it just as simple as input costs are up but so are output prices so no big deal or is a tipping point coming into view?

    I’m currently trying to get remodeling work done and it’s blowing my mind the difficulty of getting contractors and the prices they’re charging. This makes it hard for me to reconcile the assertion of this article in the Puget Sound Biz Journal that construction employment levels were flat in 2017. I would think that with prices zooming the construction labor force would be growing.

    http://www.calculatedriskblog.com/2018/03/update-framing-lumber-prices-up-sharply.html

    https://www.bizjournals.com/seattle/news/2018/02/09/construction-costs-rise-residential-slowdown.html

  4. 504
    Marc says:

    And as for all that talk about construction defect litigation putting the kibosh on new condo construction, it would seem developers have found a way to stomach that risk. Per this article, there are 5 projects with 1,100 condos under construction or planning to start by this summer in Seattle/Bellevue downtowns (Gridiron, Koda, One 88, Nexus, & Emerald) plus a “handful of smaller projects planned or under construction in outlying neighborhoods.”

    https://www.bizjournals.com/seattle/news/2018/03/02/kevin-daniels-condominium-builders-condo-mania.html

  5. 505
    kenmorem says:

    By ARDELL DellaLoggia @ 482:

    RE: kenmorem @ 481

    Your big win was on the appreciation, not the cap rate. Why focus on cap rate by going to the Midwest? I’m not saying don’t sell it, but rushing into the next thing sometimes leads to a wrong next.

    appreciation is a nice thing for the day you sell. until then, it does little to help you sleep at night aside from bothering you to think about how much more taxes will go up.

    cash flow is appealing to me now (next 5 years) as my wife and i have a 1.5 year old and will be shooting for #2, so single income for awhile.

    i can 1031 this into a midwest property (or smaller town WA), and after 50% expenses (taxes, PM, vacancy, capex, etc), still take home $600-800/mo. and, no mortgage. less risk. less upside too since my townhouse that i want to sell is a 7 minute walk from the northgate lightrail station after they construct the pedestrian bridge from the community college.

  6. 506
    Green-Horn says:

    RE: Deerhawke @ 465

    On topic is good.

    Thumbs up!

    In the South Central Seattle neighborhoods I’m watching, THERE IS ABSOLUTELY NOTHING available. Homes are going pending even before the first open house weekend… much less before the “official offer review date” announced to be 5 – 7 days after listing date.

    At some point the available inventory is going to get scraped so close to the bone that there’s no more space to go down. In the neighborhood in question the only active listings are a couple of new construction townhouses that might be priced a bit too dearly because other similar brand new townhouses usually get snapped up right away if they ever make it to marketing as MLS listings at all.
    Otherwise there are a couple perhaps overly ambitious offers hoping to tempt some developer to bite with >$1m++ for <4500 sqft of land / lots with a teardown structure.

    My bet? Supply gets even tighter than in past years and the steady to increasing demand has no place to go but into even steeper appreciation. I predict that this spring/summer becomes an even more dramatic panic for buyers than the past two. Inventory declines only slightly to perhaps stabilizing, while total transaction volume stays steady consuming whatever supply as fast as it can be thrown onto the market.

    At this point I'd be extremely surprised if appreciation doesn't exceed double digits significantly through at least Summer 2020.

    By then the Civil War that crazy extremists seem to be hoping for might be fully ripe & ready. In advance of the next presidential election it could culminate in a chaotic Battle of Seattle 2.0 in 2020 that could put a damper on enthusiasm to relocate / buy into the market.

  7. 507
    David says:

    RE: Green-Horn @ 503 – You can be sure a lot of people in Western & Southern WA State are just waiting for Trump to declare WA State in sedition and rebellion. These leftists will last about 5 minutes. Anyone in Seattle capable of defending it will be high on weed or protecting their game console and porn passwords.

  8. 508
    David says:

    I know of three (3) new houses in Burien that are selling at asking price in the $600s well off the water close to 509. Everything seems to be moving up there as well.

  9. 509
    Deerhawke says:

    RE: Marc @ 500

    Marc, I haven’t spent any real time on the labor employment statistics, but it certainly seems that there is nobody around to do the work. That is the perception.

    The reality is that people are again entering the field, but it takes a lot of time to train people. It takes six months of unemployment in 2009 for an experienced electrical apprentice to decide he should relocate to North Dakota or become a UPS driver or Amazon warehouse guy. Nobody started to hire again until 2015 but it takes three years to get somebody back to that level of competence. And now with all the demand, you need not one but a whole bunch of them.

    Have construction costs gone up? Absolutely. Everybody is raising their prices for materials and for labor. And why shouldn’t they? Most of them went through really, really tough times during the recession. Those who are still standing see how much houses are selling for now. They want their piece of the pie. Who can blame them?

    I have heard some real sob stories about remodels. Here is the gist of something I heard from a doctor who lives in Laurelhurst. “We costed it out in 2011 but decided not to pull the trigger because there was so much economic uncertainty. And also we thought the price might go down further. We just costed it out again with the same firm and it was more than double the amount! More than double?!? Like 225%!
    With all the same spec– how can that be? I can’t help feeling that they are price-gouging.”

    Hearing a surgeon complain about price gouging is pretty rich, I have to say. It is an understatement to say that I couldn’t muster any real sympathy for him.

    But the real explanation is that in 2011, the contractor didn’t have anything going on and was just trying to feed his family. He didn’t calculate a profit– he just calculated his hours and calculated them at a dollar rate half of what he charged in 2007. But in early 2018, he has fifteen jobs waiting to start — and people saying they will pay him a bonus if he puts them at the front of the line.

    My suggestion is that whatever work you want done, book it now. Prices will continue going up– and going up rapidly. Plenty of people on this site think the real estate market around here is a bubble heading toward the sharp end of a pin. If you believe them, then hold off until you hear that loud popping noise. But if you don’t believe them and you think this market is heading higher– and heading there fast– then write the deposit check and schedule the date for your remodel work.

  10. 510
    pfft says:

    RE: Deerhawke @ 506 – What I can’t understand is isn’t there overcapacity in construction? how can this be happening?

    Just read this on CR today.

    Update: Framing Lumber Prices Up Sharply Year-over-year, At Record Prices
    Read more at http://www.calculatedriskblog.com/2018/03/update-framing-lumber-prices-up-sharply.html#goKKaztozSoIyH18.99

  11. 511
    S-Crow says:

    RE: Deerhawke @ 496 – This jives with what I’ve experienced. We have had more no agent involved direct sales over the last year and a half than at any time since we turned on the lights.

    RE: Deerhawke @ 506 – That’s why I have an affinity for small subs and small GC’s and try to talk to them about saving when I get an opportunity. Many got their rear ends handed to them when the market crashed—some due to larger GC’s and developers screwing them as well. Hopefully some of them have long memories.

  12. 512
    Kmac says:

    RE: Marc @ 500

    I will condition what I say here by noting that I don’t work any further west than the north end of the lake and I haven’t built a spec house for several years now.
    My personal house that I wrapped up in late 2016 was the last big construction project I took the reigns on, but Deerhawke @ 506 – has some very good points and wrote them out much better than I ever could have and I mostly agree.

    Perhaps things are different in Seattle proper, but in the “LESS DESIRABLE” areas the employment problem isn’t so much about the lack of people willing to do the job, but that 70-80 % of applicants don’t pass the drug test that most contractor’s insurance companies mandate. (And you get an earful about how weed is legal ya know)
    On top of that, most of my highly qualified peers all left for the Lazy B back in 2012-2014 and most have maxed out there and won’t leave even though it is tempting. Now you get a bunch of blow hard know nothings that claim they can do everything but reality says otherwise.
    One of my biggest pet peeves about the younger guys is that damn phone that they just won’t put down. Grrrr.
    Yes, when you find a good employee, it takes years to get them good enough that you can send them out on their own.

    Not sure if there is a tipping point on prices for trades type of work, but as long as things are good, my input costs get marked up the same as always and my labor rate gets increased as scheduled. Every business needs to make a profit and after so many years of no profit, this kind of averages things out a bit.

    Both my business and several of my competitors/peers were seasonably slower this winter, unlike the several years prior. It definitely was wetter this year than recent prior years, but maybe this is a sign of a coming slowdown in exuberance. IDK

    Not sure if contractor prices are going to go up, up and away but it may be prudent to secure your place in line to get your remodel done before you are old and gray. The market may slow, but short term my bet is a plateau at worse.

  13. 513
    Kmac says:

    By S-Crow @ 508: –

    That’s why I have an affinity for small subs and small GC’s and try to talk to them about saving when I get an opportunity. Many got their rear ends handed to them when the market crashed—some due to larger GC’s and developers screwing them as well. Hopefully some of them have long memories.

    This is absolutely the best way to go.
    People are always shocked when I voluntarily tell them they don’t need to do certain things even when it directly benefits me to keep my mouth shut.

  14. 514
    villytoon says:

    Need some RE advice. I own a townhome rental (rent = $2500. payments = $1700) near greenlake on Roosevelt. bought in 2005 for 300K. Zillow says it’s worth 650K. I’m considering to sell some time in 2018 and 1031 it into a house in HQ2 (whenever that gets announced). Thoughts?

  15. 515
    Wile E. Millenial says:

    By Marc @ 500:

    I’m currently trying to get remodeling work done and it’s blowing my mind the difficulty of getting contractors and the prices they’re charging. This makes it hard for me to reconcile the assertion of this article in the Puget Sound Biz Journal that construction employment levels were flat in 2017. I would think that with prices zooming the construction labor force would be growing.

    I’ve noticed contractors won’t return calls, can’t be bothered to estimate five-figure projects, and the estimates I’ve gotten have been a bit eye-popping even with multiple bidders. I’ve had contractors return voicemails three months later. The only exception seems to be low-skill work, which is priced competitively.

    I’ve also been looking at non-MLS sales in my neighborhood… quite a few houses seem to be getting slurped up by a small number of “we close fast for cash”-type companies. Usually for just below the rough market value of the land.

  16. 516
    Deerhawke says:

    RE: Marc @ 501

    I am really glad to see condos going up downtown. Having that kind of density is good for the downtown core. If the city council had any brains or any guts, they would have acted long ago to deal with the construction defects mess.

    But capitalism finds a way. If you are rich enough, you can self finance so that you don’t have to worry about getting insurance, since the banks who require that insurance aren’t part of the process. If the buildings are being built by foreign owned and operated firms using foreign money, same deal.

    And it is kind of interesting that if there is no real possibility of recovery, the lawyers never bother to get involved and so the construction defects are magically never discovered. Its a miracle!

    Seriously, though, the other side of the issue is that envelope science has come a long way. There are envelope engineers, envelope consultants and envelope inspectors. You put this group together with the waterproof/breathable materials that are out there now and there really shouldn’t be much for the lawyers to file suit about.

    Not to say they won’t try if they see an opportunity to make a quick buck.

  17. 517

    On the issue of automation replacing minimum wage workers, apparently there’s still quite a way to go based on this one product.

    https://www.technologyreview.com/the-download/610424/flippy-the-burger-making-robot-has-started-its-shift/

    And we shouldn’t do it at all based on last week’s X-Files! ;-)

  18. 518
    Deerhawke says:

    A bit more on construction costs.

    I just finished getting all the bills for framing a 3600 sf house in Wallingford. I added an escalator for costs because I knew they were on the move. But framing materials still came in 30% more than budgeted. And framing labor went from $7.50 to $8.50 per square foot in the 6 months since I put together the budget. Even then, the framer said he was too busy to come back and take care of mistakes, inspection items and smaller items (usually included) like fireplace surrounds. The framer was disgusted that he had signed a bid for that paltry amount and said over and over again that he should be getting $1-$2 more. I had to hire another framer to come back and take care of the pickup work.

    Now for reference, I was paying $6.50 per square foot in 2007 before the recession and thought it was highway robbery. In 2010 I had a bid for $3.50 per square foot. I told the framer that it was impossible for him to bid it at that rate. He said it was an “insulting rate” but said he and his guys just needed to find enough work to get through the recession. I found out he cut everyone’s salary in half but paid in cash, stopped paying L&I and stopped paying his federal income taxes. After the recession, he declared bankruptcy and re-incorporated under his lead framer’s name. L&I and the IRS have judgements against him, but all of his assets are held in the names of his sons.

    I called him last week about my next project and he said he couldn’t bid the project because he is too busy, but said he was bidding everything at $10– three times the lowest rate he was paid at the bottom of the recession.

  19. 519
    Southsounder says:

    RE: Deerhawke @ 514

    I totally understand your perspective. Which represents the supply side of the curve. What I cannot understand is who is able to pay those prices? Especially given wage inflation is a little over 2% for the average American or PNW employee. I think CPI was 3% last year in the Seattle Tacoma area but 2% or less for the previous 3-5yrs. I guess I’m struggling to understand the demand side of the price curve. But who knows the tech industry must be killing it….

  20. 520

    RE: Southsounder @ 519 – It really shouldn’t be all that surprising given the limited inventory of resale houses the past several years. If you can’t find what you want already built you need to build. And given what has been happening with prices of houses, many people (including contractors paying subs) will be willing to pay the higher prices.

  21. 521

    I visited an open house south of Tacoma this weekend that was crazy busy. I don’t do that much in that area, but I was surprised to see that level of activity so far south of Seattle.

    I also visited a vacant listing that had a sign that said “I’m Gorgeous Inside!” In actuality, it looked like a 2009 bank owned listing–before the banks started fixing the places up a bit.

  22. 522
    Southsounder says:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 520

    Again, that’s a supply side argument. As supply is limited prices increase- everyone knows that. But as prices increase- demand falls. However, demand does not appear to be falling. So the question is are today’s housing prices affordable to the average Seattle purchaser? At what point will price increases affect the demand side? Home prices have doubled in 5 years, wages have not.

  23. 523
    Southsounder says:

    RE: Southsounder @ 522

    Sorry. Should’ve said sustainable not affordable…

  24. 524

    By Southsounder @ 522:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 520

    Again, that’s a supply side argument. As supply is limited prices increase- everyone knows that. But as prices increase- demand falls. However, demand does not appear to be falling. So the question is are today’s housing prices affordable to the average Seattle purchaser? At what point will price increases affect the demand side? Home prices have doubled in 5 years, wages have not.

    Actually, it’s a demand side argument. It’s the demand for houses which is driving the inventory lower and also the demand for contractor services. It’s the supply that is not keeping up, including apparently the supply of contractor/subcontractor services, and that’s what is driving up prices.

    Also, home prices have not doubled in five years if you look at non-distressed property values.

  25. 525
    Southsounder says:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 524

    I guess your still not seeing my point. Deerhawke argues that the supply curve is inelastic due to the length of time to train new apprentices and for new labor to gain the necessary knowledge. That leaves the demand vs price graph left in the current market situation. So, if supply is constrained, I’m wondering at what price point does demand subside?

  26. 526

    RE: Southsounder @ 525 – I think you’re seeing it at every point in time. Price is the interaction of demand and supply. When you have an inelastic supply the price will shoot up to the extent of the demand, but that doesn’t mean the demand is decreasing. It just means some people either cannot or will not buy.

    Remember, it’s not that demand subsides as prices increase, the demand stays the same, it’s just that there are fewer buyers willing to buy as prices increase. So it’s volume that decreases, not demand. That’s why demand is typically represented as a curve. The demand curve is determined by looking at the number of buyers willing to buy at different prices. So demand does not change as prices rise, instead the number of willing buyers (or their volume) changes. You need something else to change demand (shift the entire curve), like maybe a trade war.

  27. 527
    uwp says:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 526 – In other words, we are finding out in real time what Seattle families are willing/able to pay.

    I think a lot of people here are surprised by the amount of money (plus stock) these tech workers make.

  28. 528

    RE: uwp @ 527 – Beyond that, we really have no data at all on how large the demand is. Just stories about how many listings get multiple offers, stories about buyers giving up, etc. But no one keeps comprehensive stats on the number of buyers not able to buy for one reason or another.

    Also, somewhat related, keep in mind that a lot of the inventory on the market is stale, and for good reason. I mentioned that “gorgeous inside” house, but I’ve also seen horrible flips and just plain lousy houses. So our limited inventory is even worse than it seems, and it’s demand that has made it that way.

  29. 529

    One more thing. I sometimes get caught up in this sloppiness, and even had to amend one post above.

    Inventory does not equal supply.

    Houses sold does not equal demand.

    And median and mean prices mean next to nothing as to supply and demand because houses are not fungible.

  30. 530
    Minnie says:

    I really enjoy the insight about construction work and prices and all of the stories you are all providing.

    It stands to reason that in this crazy market, the people building the actual product with their own two hands should reap some (if not most?) of the rewards. It’s a tough pill to swallow knowing that there were “deals” to be had in 2011 (if you had the cash) but thank you DeerHawk for reminding us that these people were really getting by on the skin of their teeth and that these numbers shouldn’t be a basis for today’s estimates.

    Another issue that I see contributing to the demand for contractors (or at least subs), is that many peo0ple nowadays don’t know how to do anything on their own and don’t have the time or the drive to learn. Same goes with maintenance, and we all know what happens when things don’t get maintained. I think that there’s people out there that honestly aren’t even aware that their roof and gutters need maintenance, because I know some of them.

    I wish I had more to add ,but I can just say from personal experience that I don’t think that the trades will die out because it seems to me that more and more people are going to college for the experience and because they think they should, and less to the trades, and all the while people are working more hours (not in the trades) and have less hours to devote to doing their own home improvements and maintenance and I don’t see a change in that.

  31. 531
    Marc says:

    RE: Deerhawke @ 518 – Thanks Deerhawke and Kmac for your input. It’s consistent with what I was expecting and the framer example is right on point with my experience. I think a fair percentage of contractors have so much business that they will throw out ridiculous quotes because they don’t need or especially want any particular job. But, if somebody will pay that crazy price, well then, they’ll just have to find a way to squeeze it in.

    I totally believe that it takes a considerable investment of time, money, and effort to develop good tradesman (for both sides). I’m just surprised that this hasn’t happened in more significant numbers by now considering how far we are into the current construction boom cycle.

    It will be very interesting to see how this all plays out not just locally but nationally and beyond because the story is not unique to Seattle. If history is any guide, overbuilding will happen and many people will get burned (high rise developers in Manhattan may be the next ground zero). It’s simply too lucrative a field with a lot of strong willed people who have no idea what risk aversion means.

  32. 532
    wreckingbull says:

    Another sign of the booming times is the staggering amount of oversize loads of trusses on I-5 these days. I usually see them heading south out of Snohomish and Skagit counties. I have never seen anything like it. A builder friend of mine confirmed that the fabricators are at full capacity, and then some. He has to place orders up to six months ahead of the expected install date.

  33. 533

    The new numbers are out. Active King County SFR listings down about 70 YOY and solds down about 250 YOY, so seemingly the inventory is again affecting sales.

    Numbers from NWMLS sources, but not compiled by or guaranteed by the NWMLS.

  34. 534
    Deerhawke says:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 526

    Whether this market is supply or demand driven is really kind of academic. You have very strong, consistent demand meeting highly limited supply with no real source of outside supply intervention.

    My view of the long term supply/demand pattern is that Seattle was well on its way to transforming from a normal, medium size town to a much bigger high-growth, high-tech city in the late 90’s and early 2000s.
    Then we hit an externally generated financial shock caused by the banks and the lack of effective banking regulation. In 2008, demand suddenly dropped as there was no adequate housing financing mechanism. Even the normal amount of supply was suddenly in excess in the face of rapidly constrained demand. Prices dropped. The Obama administration and the Fed did their job and provided Keynesian stimulus and eventually the market came back toward some semblance of balance. The underlying previous pattern of growth in Seattle reasserted itself with a vengeance. I would argue that the demand we should have accommodated from 2008 to 2011 suddenly showed up in 2012. But now the 5 year lack of building during that period left us well behind the ability to meet renewed demand. New sources of supply were constrained in a whole variety of ways, both short, medium and long term.

    So, we now have demand well in excess of supply– or– supply that is completely unable to rise to meet demand. This can be analyzed either way and you could argue that over time it has been more of a supply side phenomenon or more of a demand side phenomenon.

    But look at the pattern starting in the 90’s with Microsoft and continuing into the 2000s with the real diversification of this economy into a range of technologies and industries. Then look at what has happened in the development of this city since the end of the recession. Taking out 2008 to 2011, that is one continuous economic development trajectory. The recession was a detour and an aberration caused by an externally generated shock . Over the longer term, that long-term development pattern will continue to assert itself.

  35. 535
    David says:

    RE: Deerhawke @ 534 – Obama did nothing but cause the Obama Depression. Obama’s rise in the polls corresponded perfectly with the business community losing confidence in the future. Ressionary forces came into effect – and then the FED did their dark trick.

    Housing became a crisis because of the FED getting super-tight on interest rates and causing a major liquidity crisis. Once the whole thing fell apart and deflated, the FED then went into a full-blown panic and re-inflation program in the form of MASSIVE quantitative easing.

    No politician is EVER going to admit for PC reasons that Obama as a person is what caused the Depresssion – but it was.

  36. 536
    Deerhawke says:

    First draft of the Seattle Times reading of the monthly NWMLS data is out.

    https://www.seattletimes.com/business/real-estate/new-home-price-records-777000-in-seattle-950000-on-the-eastside/

  37. 537
    Deerhawke says:

    RE: David @ 535

    This is not something to be taken seriously.

    Spend less time on Fox News and the right wing conspiracy web sites. Better yet, read real economists for a change. If you really want to exercise that muscle between your ears, go back and get a bachelor’s degree, ideally in economics.

  38. 538

    RE: Deerhawke @ 537 – I would agree. Obama didn’t make the best decisions or the worst decisions to get us out of the “Great Recession,” but he clearly didn’t cause it any more than any other member of Congress in the early 2000s.

    As to Trump’s tariffs, apparently only 50% of the country opposes them. That surprises me, but maybe the dislike of trade deals is carrying over. Anyone happen do know when the US was last in a trade war? I don’t feel like researching it.

  39. 539
    pfft says:

    By Kary L. Krismer @ 538:

    RE: Deerhawke @ 537 – I would agree. Obama didn’t make the best decisions or the worst decisions to get us out of the “Great Recession,” but he clearly didn’t cause it any more than any other member of Congress in the early 2000s.

    As to Trump’s tariffs, apparently only 50% of the country opposes them. That surprises me, but maybe the dislike of trade deals is carrying over. Anyone happen do know when the US was last in a trade war? I don’t feel like researching it.

    are you kidding? Obama saved or created million of jobs. The CBO says he saved or created between 800,000 and 2.4 million jobs. can you name anyone since FDR that did more?

    For example, Donald Trumps ill-advised tariffs will cost more jobs than say Obama telling bailed out banks it probably wasn’t a good idea to go to Vegas.

  40. 540
    David says:

    RE: pfft @ 539 – Obama had bascially net-zero job creation and NEVER achieved 3% growth. The State of TEXAS was responsible for almost ALL of the job growth.

  41. 541
    David says:

    I’m planning on moving East – May just put my house into mothballs and see what happens the next 18 months.

  42. 542
  43. 543
    Concerned citizen says:

    What do David and SWE’s pathetic, race-based victim fantasies have to do with real estate? This site is swirling the bowl.

  44. 544
    S-Crow says:

    Speaking of Economists/Academics:

    “It’s very rare that you can be unqualifiedly bullish as you can now.” – Alan Greenspan, 1973 via New York Times.

    This was approx.1 week prior to the top of the markets and subsequent enormous bear market that ensued and recession—-ironically that economists had recognized only AFTER the bottom. They subsequently revised their commentary that the rescession had began a FULL YEAR year prior and had to revise their prior call.

  45. 545

    RE: pfft @ 539 – You have not been missed. I said he didn’t make the best or worst decisions, and we’ve gone over those enough in the past. Remember “jobless recovery?” Remember choosing health care over jobs during one of the worst periods of job losses in history? He saved the economy from total collapse, but he hardly did a great job beyond that.

  46. 546
    Bitcoin Bubbles says:

    Who was the poster on here that was so certain prices had peaked last year? New record prices across the board.

  47. 547
    David says:

    RE: S-Crow @ 543 – Barack Obama was running for President about a year prior to that announcing in February 2007. As it became clear he had a chance of winning – everything went to shit.

    Check the BLS stats. NO ONE is ever going to admit that Barack Obama sank the economy. It just isn’t PC.

  48. 548
    greg says:

    RE: David @ 546

    BLS numbers are there for all of us to see david, and the clearly show you are full of poop. Your hate is blinding you to reality, and that makes for poor investor choices. My guess is that you hated Obama so much you missed the massive rally so many of us grew fat on. seem fair too, given the hate and lies your spread here.

  49. 549
    Ross says:

    By Kary L. Krismer @ 538:

    RE: Deerhawke @ 537 – I would agree. Obama didn’t make the best decisions or the worst decisions to get us out of the “Great Recession,” but he clearly didn’t cause it any more than any other member of Congress in the early 2000s.

    As to Trump’s tariffs, apparently only 50% of the country opposes them. That surprises me, but maybe the dislike of trade deals is carrying over. Anyone happen do know when the US was last in a trade war? I don’t feel like researching it.

    There were tariffs on steel in 2002 (Bush), though not sure if that counts as a trade war.

  50. 550
    Eastsider says:

    RE: greg @ 547 – Here are some BLS numbers and they are not pretty –

    Civilian labor force participation rate by age group, year 2006, year 2016 –
    16 to 24 – 60.6% 55.2%
    25 to 54 – 82.9% 81.3%
    55 to 64 – 63.7% 64.1%
    65 to 74 – 23.6% 26.8%
    75 and older – 6.4% 8.4%

    Prime working age group declined significantly while old people are staying longer at their jobs (75 yo and can’t afford to retire?!)

    https://www.bls.gov/emp/ep_table_303.htm

    Further, during Obama years, drug overdose became epidemic. Between 2012 and 2016, the number of drug overdose deaths among 15-44 yo almost doubled. See the last table at the link below –

    http://www.calculatedriskblog.com/2018/03/lawler-population-outlook-uncertainty.html

  51. 551

    RE: Eastsider @ 548 – Job creation never really did take off under Obama, and really it hasn’t under Trump either. You can debate how many jobs are needed to keep up with population growth, but regardless it is a significant number. Accordingly, I view 200,000 jobs as being only okay and under that being poor.

    I’m not sure where pfft gets his “saved or created” job figures above, I suspect it’s the net change from beginning to end, and there were a lot of job losses at the beginning. “Saved or created” on its face is sort of a bogus made up number, but over 8 years 2.4M would only be 25,000 jobs per month! Typically Obama’s job creation numbers were between 150,000 and 225,000, for the most part once things turned positive. Merely poor or okay.

    As to increased participation of older people, some of it is undoubtedly not being able to retire, some of it the social security age increasing, and part of it is just that some people don’t want to retire–they enjoy what they do (or at least want to stay busy if they don’t).

  52. 552

    By Eastsider @ 548:

    Further, during Obama years, drug overdose became epidemic. Between 2012 and 2016, the number of drug overdose deaths among 15-44 yo almost doubled. See the last table at the link below –

    I was actually surprised to see that Obama paid any attention to this issue, but he did. Trump has certainly stepped it up a bit. But then there’s this!

    http://www.chicagotribune.com/g00/lifestyles/health/ct-opioids-common-painkillers-chronic-pain-20180307-story.html

    I thought TV ads for prescription drugs were bad, but maybe we’d be better off letting people pick their drugs off of TV ads than relying on our doctors to advise us.

  53. 553

    By Bitcoin Bubbles @ 545:

    Who was the poster on here that was so certain prices had peaked last year? New record prices across the board.

    Not quite–the Times is just cherry picking numbers, although the numbers they are picking are low hanging fruit being they’re Seattle and the Eastside. King County overall is not at a record. It’s not as bad as when during the downturn they grouped condos and houses together to get a much lower number than either together (actually both separate might have been positive–but more condos in the mix drive the combination down).

    Note when I reported the numbers above I didn’t even mention price. The sales are too thin due to both the time of year and the low inventory numbers for price to be all that important when you’re talking about area sales (price of course remains very important when you’re talking about the price of an individual house).

  54. 554
    Eastsider says:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 549 – Many of those jobs ‘created’ during Obama years were low paying jobs. That’s why the rich poor divide has gotten much worse. When Obama administration claimed that they deported more illegals than any previous administration, it was a big lie because of ‘catch and release’. Yet, many people were just too naïve to see that. They are easily brainwashed by MSM which is really sad.

  55. 555
    ess says:

    By Bitcoin Bubbles @ 545:

    Who was the poster on here that was so certain prices had peaked last year? New record prices across the board.

    Some have called the peak even 3-4 years ago – so if someone actually didn’t buy 3-4 years ago because they believed that prices would drop and instead waited to the present day they would have:

    Missed an appreciation of property prices of approximately 25 -40%.

    Paid rent over the years.

    Not started to pay off a mortgage and pay into principle and not obtained any tax benefits.

    Pay an increasingly higher rate to borrow money as interest rates have increased.

    Have less inventory to choose from.

    Taken on more real estate risk that prices will drop, and lose the 3-4 years of price increases that protect the investment from loses in the event the property needs to be sold.

    Oh well – win some and lose some. Those who put off buying appear to have lost.

  56. 556
    Eastsider says:

    RE: ess @ 553 – You could have made the same argument in 2005. We have too many bullish players here. You see them in crypto blogs too and would have profited drastically more than Seattle RE had you invested in them 3 years ago. LOL.

  57. 557

    RE: ess @ 553 – The realized gain for those who bought within the past 2-4 years and then sold is rather significant, even without their having made any changes to the house. Not only have they been able to cover costs of sale easily, but in many cases it probably covers most or all of their mortgage payments, if not more. And in most cases is also tax-free gain if it was their residence. And all during a period of relatively low inflation. It’s really pretty incredible.

  58. 558
    Southsounder says:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 555

    Pretty Incredible is probably an understatement. I would say unprecedented but my guess is ‘04-‘06 was probably similar but I don’t know for sure as this was before my timeline of homeownership.

  59. 559
    uwp says:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 549 – Imagine the job creation under Obama if there was an expansion in public sector hiring during his two terms, rather than a contraction. There was actually a net decrease in public sector jobs during “Big Government” Obama’s terms, while GWB added almost 2 million (Saint Reagan 1.5 million).
    Chart Here

    David’s contention that Obama is responsible for the 07/08 recession is right up there with the 30% in the polls who blame him for Katrina.

  60. 560

    RE: Southsounder @ 556 – I think you probably saw similar gains during the late 70s, early 80s, but those were inflation driven. So the money you received back wasn’t worth as much. Still, it was better than just sitting on money at the time.

  61. 561

    RE: Marc @ 503
    Get Multiple Bids That Answer You Request

    Home Advisor is the website I used….
    One contractor wanted $2600 to put up roof edge lumber and paint it….another did it nicely for $1200, I hired that man. They were both 4-5 star companies BTW.

    If they don’t answer your call right away for your request for scheduling an estimate, don’t hire them….they’re TOO BUSY.

    Good Luck.

  62. 562

    RE: uwp @ 557
    I Like Your Question

    But would I trust the answer from a political Obama or Trump source? Hades no.

    Sometimes the actual data facts are found outside the MSM….

  63. 563

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 558
    I had an 18% Money Market account in the early 80s….sure beats the puny 0.5% BECU currently pays out.

  64. 564

    More Health Care Waste Bio-Engineers Would Gladly Document and Eliminate

    But they outsourced all the Bio-Engineering; ask the hospital management….I did. The pig headed doctors and nurses hate engineers data sifting?

    I hear breast cancer testing is in the same horrifying anomaly.

    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/03/06/prostate-screening-saves-no-lives-may-do-harm-good/

    Prostate screening I hear is too invasive and the fiber optics jammed in your colon does have negative health reactions. Prostate is also a very slow cancer I hear, sometimes taking decades to develop and you died of something else anyway. Keep your libido or regret it later?

  65. 565
    David says:

    RE: softwarengineer @ 561 – I use Ally Bank = 1.45% Savings Account

    https://www.ally.com/bank/online-savings-account/

  66. 566
    David says:

    RE: greg @ 547 – If they are there – then you will see I am correct. But you are not really looking.

  67. 567
    Deerhawke says:

    RE: David @ 563

    Wow. A whole 1.45%!!!!

    These are the kind of people who want to tell us about how much they know about business and economics? Of course we should all listen carefully!

    Trump’s chumps. At a time when real estate in this area is appreciating double digits (even without considering leverage) they are putting their dough to work for the banksters. Well better than burying it out behind the outhouse!

  68. 568
    ess says:

    By Eastsider @ 554:

    RE: ess @ 553 – You could have made the same argument in 2005. We have too many bullish players here. You see them in crypto blogs too and would have profited drastically more than Seattle RE had you invested in them 3 years ago. LOL.

    One could have, but as a (small) real estate investor, I didn’t. Back then I would attend open houses for houses the size of my rental house and be amazed that the costs of the down payment, principle and interest and taxes were all out of proportion to what I could rent out my similar house for. It didn’t make any sense to me to buy – but people were doing so because they thought real estate prices were only going up. Fast forward a decade – not only is there a shortage of housing in this area, but the rent/payment comparison is not so out of line, and mortgages are not being handed out on the basis of just breathing. There may be a correction in housing prices in the next few years with increasing mortgage rates – but I don’t think it will be the 40-50% experienced in the great recession. But who knows – the only certain thing about the future is that it is uncertain.

  69. 569
    David says:

    RE: Deerhawke @ 565 – LOL, everyone has cash. Berkshire Hathaway has ~$115B in cash or equivalent short-term bonds yielding about that 1.45%. I put $70,000 into some stocks last week. I recommend PCG & KMI.

    I would, however, recommend keeping some cash because stock valuations are HIGH. And you cannot buy the lows without cash.

  70. 570
    Deerhawke says:

    When the correction comes (and it is a question of when, not if) there are a few things that are certain.

    First, it will happen pretty quickly and unexpectedly. Things will go from busy as heck to everyone deciding not to buy (or even look) in the course of a few weeks. There might be some obvious triggering event. Or there might not. In the fall of 2011, I had 14 unsold units that had been dragging on the market for 60 days but suddenly right after Thanksgiving, the phones began to ring and they were all gone before Christmas. It will be like that, but in reverse.

    The other thing that is certain is that all the bears will jump up simultaneously and say, “You see! You see! We were right! I have been calling this correction since 2011! I was even the one who warned you about shadow inventory! You heard it all here first!”

  71. 571
    Southsounder says:

    RE: Deerhawke @ 568

    Are you increasing the amount of units you’re developing, steady amount, or cautiously developing less? In other words, do you think we are in early, middle, or late cycle? I know nothing about building so maybe you can share some insight. From my perspective, it seems to be a scary time to be increasing the amount of development but it is definitely a sellers market! Again, I wouldn’t begin to say I understand the complexities of land development but I would appreciate any insight.

  72. 572
    David says:

    RE: Deerhawke @ 568 – Bershire Hathaway doesn’t buy real estate. because it is illiquid and the Patels of the world know the local markets better.

  73. 573
    wreckingbull says:

    RE: Deerhawke @ 568 – I don’t recall too many bears here on this forum in 2011. Many of us re-entered real estate in that time period. In fact, a guy who runs a blog called “Seattle Bubble” even bought a house then!

    I think what you see as bearish behavior is simply push-back to the constant pumping from a few select members of the comment section. It gets a little tiring.

  74. 574
    Deerhawke says:

    RE: Southsounder @ 569

    As a kid, you probably played musical chairs. In my neighborhood, we had a more realistic variant of the game where there were chairs in the middle of the room, but candy treats being handed out near the edge of the room. If you never left your chair, you never got a treat. But no matter what, if you got caught too far from your chair when the music stopped, you were out and you lost.

    Normally this late in an economic cycle, I would be bogarting a chair.

    But we have weird clueless leadership in charge of the national economy right now. We have just passed a tax cut for people like me (who don’t need it) and in so doing provided a lot of stimulus to the economy (which is already at full employment so, also, does not need it). So I think that alone will extend the playing of the music . Of course, that will make the inevitable snap-back longer lasting and more painful.
    But in the meantime I am going to run around and get some more treats.

    The other factor is that Seattle’s economy has particular characteristics that make me believe that I may be able to discern the end of the music. I don’t need to point out the record-breaking lack of inventory.
    And generally the rest of the country goes into recession before us. I am keeping a close eye out on other key real estate markets, particularly on the east coast.

    I may be doing more projects than I might otherwise during this part of the economic cycle, but I am also hedging risk by choosing housing sectors, neighborhoods and projects very carefully, repeatedly saying no to buy low and keeping a fair amount of cash. During the next recession, I want to make sure I am not in a position to have to sell anything.

    I do not believe we will see a rerun of 2008. I absolutely believe we will see a rerun of 1981/2 or 1991/2.– unless it is something worse like the 1973 recession where political factors triggered it.

    Mueller has let it be known that he would try to avoid putting his thumb on the scale right before the midterm elections. But he is a real law and order guy. An old school Republican from the era when that was still a respectable conservative term. Despite all kinds of hopeful denials by the Fox News sheep, there will be a lot of indictments by his team this spring and summer. In my mind, it is a 50/50 bet whether that includes family members. If it does, then all hell may break loose and in retrospect, this will have looked like a very good time to sell.

    Personally I think Mueller’s team– large, well financed and well established in the data though it is, does not have enough time for that before the mid-term elections. We will continue to see indictments of non-family members and guilty pleas plus cooperation agreements. There is still a ton of groundwork to do before indicting White House family members. That, and action on obstruction of justice, will come after the mid-terms.

  75. 575

    By David @ 570:

    RE: Deerhawke @ 568 – Bershire Hathaway doesn’t buy real estate. because it is illiquid and the Patels of the world know the local markets better.

    Wrong. https://affordablehousingjobs.com/warren-buffett-invests-in-affordable-housing/

  76. 576
    David says:

    RE: Deerhawke @ 572
    1) Trump can fire any official he wants.
    2) You can indict a ham sandwich – doesn’t mean they get a conviction.
    3) The tax reform was to help business and encourage more hiring.
    4) The economy should improve as a result.
    5) The Second Amendment is clearly still necessary for self-protection from government – State or Federal.

  77. 577
    David says:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 573 – He isn’t making money from that.

    http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/warren-buffetts-latest-tax-dodge/article/1231806

    He also owns manufactured housing which he does make money from in gobs.

    But no, Berkshire DOES NOT invest in housing. Search Charlie Munger on housing.

  78. 578
    uwp says:

    Another article for the Amazon bears:
    https://www.seattletimes.com/business/amazon/despite-hq2-plan-amazons-seattle-real-estate-target-grows-to-14-million-square-feet/

    “Amazon plans to grow its Seattle headquarters to almost 14 million square feet of office space, an addition of more than 2 million square feet from the last time the company updated its local real estate plans.”

  79. 579
    pfft says:

    By David @ 540:

    RE: pfft @ 539 – Obama had bascially net-zero job creation and NEVER achieved 3% growth. The State of TEXAS was responsible for almost ALL of the job growth.

    source please.

    Obama created 11.3 million jobs and that includes him inheriting the Bush Great Recession. He did that with constant obstruction from Republicans.

  80. 580
    pfft says:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 544 – Kary you are saying it was a bad time to save the lives of tens of thousands of Americans from dying due to lack of healthcare? have a heart Kary.

    If Obamacare were so bad why will repealing it cost so many jobs?

    http://money.cnn.com/2017/01/05/news/economy/repealing-obamacare-jobs-lost/index.html

  81. 581
    pfft says:

    By David @ 567:

    RE: Deerhawke @ 565 – LOL, everyone has cash. Berkshire Hathaway has ~$115B in cash or equivalent short-term bonds yielding about that 1.45%. I put $70,000 into some stocks last week. I recommend PCG & KMI.

    I would, however, recommend keeping some cash because stock valuations are HIGH. And you cannot buy the lows without cash.

    RE: David @ 567Warren Buffet could buy a sports team in every major sport and barely dent his cash… He probably should. Sports fanchises are beating the market last time I checked.

  82. 582
    pfft says:

    RE: David @ 575 – dude, Buffet makes houses like you pointed out and makes just about everything that goes into houses. He also just got into buying and selling homes. He owns a realtor too.

  83. 583
    Doug says:

    RE: uwp @ 576 – any day now…

  84. 584
    Deerhawke says:

    RE: David @ 574

    David, when I think of people like you, I think of the phrase “You really have drunk the Koolaid…”. Since people have probably said this often about you, and you are puzzled about what it means, you should really go back and check out the source on this.

    (If there are big words you don’t know, you realize you can use a dictionary to look them up, right?)

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jonestown

    For the rest on this site who wonder what gives rise to people like David and so-called Software Engineer, please note that there has been a virulent anti-intellectual strain in American politics for quite some long time. Check out this article from the 1964 article in Harper’s Magazine by social historian Richard Hofstader. It is a classic.

    https://harpers.org/archive/1964/11/the-paranoid-style-in-american-politics/2/

  85. 585
    Kmac says:

    RE: pfft @ 580
    You mean like this:
    https://www.seattletimes.com/business/real-estate/the-mobile-home-trap-how-a-warren-buffett-empire-preys-on-the-poor/

    Between the extreme lefties and extreme righties and people who complain about being off topic but then dive right into an off topic political rant, SB is loosing it way.

    And about construction employment, what is going on now by no means compares to the level of construction that was happening in the late 80’s early 90’s around here.
    What is happening now is at a much lower level, but with much less available labor so it seems worse.
    You only have to see the Home Depot video aimed at millennials about how to read a tape measure to realize the level of instruction that is needed to get the younger set up to speed:
    https://boingboing.net/2017/10/14/home-depot-teaches-millennials.html

  86. 586
    redmondjp says:

    Wow, pfft, did you wake up from your TDS coma just now?

    Are you warming up for the midterms?

  87. 587
    pfft says:

    By redmondjp @ 584:

    Wow, pfft, did you wake up from your TDS coma just now?

    Are you warming up for the midterms?

    Why would you even bring up the midterms? Republicans are going to lose bigly. A lot of very smart people think Democrats are going to win back the house and maybe the Senate.

    He is one of the least popular presidents ever. He’s an embarrassment. A lot of people think he’s one of the worst presidents ever. Trump is so popular he lost an Alabama Senate seat. He’s a genius.

  88. 588
    David says:

    RE: pfft @ 580 – Building homes and getting into real estate are two VERY different things. BH owns a couple of home builders. He owns BH Real Estate which is a service business.

    Housing has essentially a ZERO return on investment historically/Case Schiller.

  89. 589
    Deerhawke says:

    RE: David @ 586

    “Housing has essentially a ZERO return on investment historically. ”

    David’s idea of a fact is anything he states with authority. And restates. And restates. And restates. And if that doesnt work put it in ALL CAPS.

    The right wing tactic is to keep repeating things as facts until those without any education or common sense start to follow and repeat. If that still doesnt work, PUT IT INTO ALL CAPS because that is such an effective rhetorical device for those with weak minds and substandard educations.

  90. 590
    David says:

    RE: pfft @ 585 – Trump is actually more popular than Obama was at this point in his first term. – Rasmussen

  91. 591
    David says:

    RE: Deerhawke @ 587

    Robert Shiller: Don’t Invest in Housing

    https://www.pragcap.com/robert-shiller-dont-invest-in-housing/

    FYI: Blackstone invested $Billions in housing and has been a poor performer in the stock market.

  92. 592
    kenmorem says:

    By David @ 588:

    RE: pfft @ 585 – Trump is actually more popular than Obama was at this point in his first term. – Rasmussen

    should’ve used ALL CAPS:
    https://projects.fivethirtyeight.com/trump-approval-ratings/

  93. 593
    David says:

    RE: kenmorem @ 590

    You have to remember that Seattle, Oregon & California are SO out of touch with the reality in the rest of the country that people here are hopelessly deluded. Trump is doing just fine in the rest of the country.

  94. 594
    pfft says:

    RE: David @ 591 – His party lost historic elections in Virginia and Alabama. Republicans are going to get clobbered in Nov. at the polls. Haven’t you figured this out? Very smart people have. Democrats are running the best people.

  95. 595
    pfft says:

    By David @ 591:

    RE: kenmorem @ 590

    You have to remember that Seattle, Oregon & California are SO out of touch with the reality in the rest of the country that people here are hopelessly deluded. Trump is doing just fine in the rest of the country.

    nobody cares about the rest of the country. it’s all about the coasts. see what I did there?

  96. 596
    David says:

    You should remember that Trump is President because he won. AND when he won the economy took off!!! The stock market took offffffff!!!!

    RE: pfft @ 592RE: pfft @ 585 – Trump is actually more popular than Obama was at this point in his first term. – Rasmussen

  97. 597
    Bitcoin Bubbles says:

    Ahhh the glory days, when there was more than one Seattle Bubble post per month and people stayed on topic.

  98. 598

    By pfft @ 578:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 544 – Kary you are saying it was a bad time to save the lives of tens of thousands of Americans from dying due to lack of healthcare? have a heart Kary.

    We’ve gone over this all before. I remember you have a bad memory, so I won’t bother repeating it, because you won’t remember anything said today a week from now.

  99. 599

    By David @ 575:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 573 – He isn’t making money from that.

    By pfft @ 580:

    RE: David @ 575 – dude, Buffet makes houses like you pointed out and makes just about everything that goes into houses. He also just got into buying and selling homes. He owns a realtor too.

    pfft, all that is true, but the most glaring part was the idea that Buffet is doing something not to make money!

    As to buying the real estate brand (I don’t even remember what it was called), I really don’t understand what he was thinking there, or the money others invested in Realogy either. I just don’t see that having contracts with a bunch of independent contractors, with little brand loyalty, is all that valuable.

  100. 600

    By Kmac @ 583:

    You only have to see the Home Depot video aimed at millennials about how to read a tape measure to realize the level of instruction that is needed to get the younger set up to speed:
    https://boingboing.net/2017/10/14/home-depot-teaches-millennials.html

    Wow. And I thought it was bad that no one has ever taught them which side of the street to walk on.

  101. 601

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 517
    Hamburger Flipping Robots Already Designed and Functioning
    Seattle’s Hamburger flipping economy is TOAST. Soon Amazon will automate their warehouses and kiss even those jobs good bye.

  102. 602
    uwp says:

    In early March of year two of their presidencies, Gallup has Obama 49-44 (+5 approval) while Trump is current 39-55 (-16 disapproval). But whatever floats your boat man.
    I can’t link to the comparison chart, but you can recreate it for yourself at Gallup, and even compare him to some other presidents if you wish.

    And housing has actually been a very good investment over the years, not just in the US, but globally. Historically has returned just below equities (post 1950), but with much lower standard deviation.
    https://www.frbsf.org/economic-research/files/wp2017-25.pdf

    If you just break it into a couple components it’s pretty easy to think about. Say the price of your house rises just over inflation (say 3-4%), then you have the imputed rental income (say 5-6%), take out expenses (1-2%)… not too bad. Now imagine if a bank let you lever that up 5 times and you could deduct the interest from your taxes!

  103. 603

    b>RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 597
    Dumb Youth Means One Thing
    Dumb X-Gens and Baby Boomers too….LOL
    We taught them in our perfect schools….we are never the blame….

  104. 604

    RE: uwp @ 599
    Trump is now 50% Approval
    But Polls are a complete JOKE anyway….Trump is behind 10 points and suddenly wins by 10 points, making the MSM eat crow.

  105. 605
    uwp says:

    RE: softwarengineer @ 601 – Trump won by 10 points? What the heck are you talking about? He lost the popular vote by almost 3 million.

    The aggregate pollsters on Nov 8th ranged from Hillary winning the vote by 1.9% to a high of 5.3%. She ended up winning the vote by 2.1%

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nationwide_opinion_polling_for_the_United_States_presidential_election,_2016

  106. 606
    Deerhawke says:

    RE: Kmac @ 583

    The video for millenials on reading a tape measure is priceless.

    They should have one for all kinds of simple tools. (“This … is a hammer. This is called the head. It is the part that comes in contact with the the nail (url ref for youtube video on nails). This is the claw for pulling nails you have put in crooked or in the wrong place. This is the handle. As the name implies, it goes (that’s right) in your hand…”).

    I would like to send this one to choice city council members who make housing policy, because most of them don’t actually know which end of a hammer to hold but have so much power to change housing in this city.

    Really my biggest problem with millennials is the complete and utter fascination with their phones. Their phones are dinging constantly and they cannot stop themselves from looking. They will break eye contact and look at their phone right while you are giving them instructions– and not think it is the least bit rude. Fifty, sixty times a day their phones are buzzing, dinging, chirping or pinging. It is their extended family grouptext. It is the needy girlfriend who wants to know if you still love her since two hours ago. It is the friend asking if you want a beer tonight. It is their newsfeed, entertainment feed, facebook, twitter, snapchat, instagram. This generation is perpetually distracted. My electrician told his apprentices they had to leave their phones in the truck and they could only be checked at coffeebreak and lunch. One of his apprentices said this was outrageous and quit.

  107. 607
    Kmac says:

    RE: softwarengineer @ 600

    Not having learned something doesn’t make you dumb, as only you seem to be saying.

    Todays kids are smarter than comparative generations in many regards, but certain basics are being (or have been) ignored.

  108. 608
    Doug says:

    RE: Deerhawke @ 606 – We are all just products of our environments.

    Don’t blame ‘millennials’ for their addiction to technology. You would be equally as addicted if you grew up with it and didn’t know life outside of it.

    If you want to place blame more correctly then place it on Jobs, Zuckerberg, Dorsey, and Spiegel.

  109. 609
    Matt P says:

    By Kmac @ 607:

    RE: softwarengineer @ 600

    Not having learned something doesn’t make you dumb, as only you seem to be saying.

    Todays kids are smarter than comparative generations in many regards, but certain basics are being (or have been) ignored.

    Basics from previous generations are always ignored else there would be no advancement. It’s not possible to learn everything. We don’t teach hunting and gathering anymore because we can just go to the store buy what we need leaving us time to focus on other things. Whether those other things are good or bad or helpful is open for debate.

  110. 610
    pfft says:

    By Kary L. Krismer @ 598:

    By pfft @ 578:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 544 – Kary you are saying it was a bad time to save the lives of tens of thousands of Americans from dying due to lack of healthcare? have a heart Kary.

    We’ve gone over this all before. I remember you have a bad memory, so I won’t bother repeating it, because you won’t remember anything said today a week from now.

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 598 – so you aren’t going to answer.

    Kary you are saying it was a bad time to save the lives of tens of thousands of Americans from dying due to lack of healthcare?

  111. 611
    pfft says:

    By Deerhawke @ 606:

    RE: Kmac @ 583

    The video for millenials on reading a tape measure is priceless.

    On the other hand some adults here who shall remain nameless can’t even post links to back up what they say. Lots of adults state facts that with a quick google search can be proven false. Like saying that healthcare caused job loses. A quick google search proves that false.

  112. 612
    redmondjp says:

    By pfft @ 587:

    By redmondjp @ 584:

    Wow, pfft, did you wake up from your TDS coma just now?

    Are you warming up for the midterms?

    Why would you even bring up the midterms? Republicans are going to lose bigly. A lot of very smart people think Democrats are going to win back the house and maybe the Senate.

    He is one of the least popular presidents ever. He’s an embarrassment. A lot of people think he’s one of the worst presidents ever. Trump is so popular he lost an Alabama Senate seat. He’s a genius.

    Don’t play stupid, pfft. The fact that you disappeared off the grid after the presidential election, and conveniently show up again right now, again only regurgitating progressive talking points having nothing to do with local real estate, proves my contention that you are a paid poster. So I can assume that the OSF deposits started showing up again in your bank account?

  113. 613
  114. 614
    David says:

    The BIGGEST problem I will have if I leave Seattle for the East is that people will think I line up with Seattle’s Ed Murray/Durkan values.

  115. 615
    wreckingbull says:

    RE: redmondjp @ 611 – I have often wondered the same thing. Her posts are so robotic and contrived, I have always assumed she is a paid astroturfer.

  116. 616
    pfft says:

    By redmondjp @ 611:

    By pfft @ 587:

    By redmondjp @ 584:

    Wow, pfft, did you wake up from your TDS coma just now?

    Are you warming up for the midterms?

    Why would you even bring up the midterms? Republicans are going to lose bigly. A lot of very smart people think Democrats are going to win back the house and maybe the Senate.

    He is one of the least popular presidents ever. He’s an embarrassment. A lot of people think he’s one of the worst presidents ever. Trump is so popular he lost an Alabama Senate seat. He’s a genius.

    Don’t play stupid, pfft. The fact that you disappeared off the grid after the presidential election, and conveniently show up again right now, again only regurgitating progressive talking points having nothing to do with local real estate, proves my contention that you are a paid poster. So I can assume that the OSF deposits started showing up again in your bank account?

    I’ve been here for years. Since at least 2008 or 2009. Don’t you guys have any new material? I’ve been hearing that for years. We just gonna rehash the greatest hits? I posted about real estate. nobody responded. I joined an already ongoing conversation.

    Are you going to respond to anything I said? The Republicans are going to lose bigly in November.

  117. 617
    pfft says:

    RE: wreckingbull @ 614 – Someone has a different opinion than you and backs it up with facts so you assume they are a plant? That’s just called knowing what you are talking about. Google is a wonderful thing, use it people.

  118. 618
    Eastsider says:

    RE: wreckingbull @ 614 – pfft is just a troll. If Google existed during Galileo’s lifetime, it would have ‘proven’ that Galileo was full of it. Garbage in, garbage out.

  119. 619
    pfft says:

    By Eastsider @ 617:

    RE: wreckingbull @ 614 – pfft is just a troll. If Google existed during Galileo’s lifetime, it would have ‘proven’ that Galileo was full of it. Garbage in, garbage out.

    you mad bro?

  120. 620

    By pfft @ 610:

    By Deerhawke @ 606:

    RE: Kmac @ 583

    The video for millenials on reading a tape measure is priceless.

    On the other hand some adults here who shall remain nameless can’t even post links to back up what they say. Lots of adults state facts that with a quick google search can be proven false. Like saying that healthcare caused job loses. A quick google search proves that false.

    Quit trolling troll. Any fool knows that if you increase the burden on employers that will result in fewer jobs being offered, but beyond that in the early days Obamacare also created a lot of uncertainty, further impacting jobs. Obama cared more about getting a poorly designed health care plan through that getting people jobs! Obama has something in common with you–neither of you has a clue about being in business.

    But apparently you haven’t kept up on what’s happening with Obamacare. Insurers have been pulling out of the individual markets in several states, and that was happening even before Trump was elected, so don’t blame it on Trump. Regence pulled out of almost all of Washington state, leaving only Premerea as the remaining traditional insurer, but with premiums roughly $300 more a month than what I was paying last year. I’ve been forced to go to Kaiser, so I could I not keep my doctor or my insurance (something Obama admitted lying about to get Obamacare passed).

    Of course, Trump isn’t helping things. He’s sort of like you–doesn’t have a clue about insurance matters.

  121. 621

    By pfft @ 615:

    Are you going to respond to anything I said? The Republicans are going to lose bigly in November.

    I seem to recall you saying the same thing about Trump. The choice in 2016 totally sucked, but you were operating in a total fog not realizing what a disaster politician/candidate Hillary was. We have people like you to blame for giving us Trump.

  122. 622

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 620 – pfft really shouldn’t go up against people who have memories, but he probably cannot remember that. Here’s pfft before the election in October.

    https://seattlebubble.com/blog/2016/10/06/september-reporting-roundup-market-still-strong/#comments

    Post 68: “Wow…the trump campaign is in free fall. There is a good chance that the Dems will win the House. so many allegations against trump.”

    Post 109: “2. just about every bookie and poll aggregator I can find has trump losing.”

  123. 623
    David says:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 619 – This is true! I priced out individual insurance and it was about $12,000/year with, I think, a $7,000 deductible.

    $19,000 per year if I really use the insurance. Otherwise just $12,000/year if I don’t.

    What a disaster.

    I really want a mandate like that for my line of work. Force people to pay me for it even if they don’t need it.

  124. 624
    pfft says:

    By Kary L. Krismer @ 621:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 620 – pfft really shouldn’t go up against people who have memories, but he probably cannot remember that. Here’s pfft before the election in October.

    https://seattlebubble.com/blog/2016/10/06/september-reporting-roundup-market-still-strong/#comments

    Post 68: “Wow…the trump campaign is in free fall. There is a good chance that the Dems will win the House. so many allegations against trump.”

    Post 109: “2. just about every bookie and poll aggregator I can find has trump losing.”

    that’s what the polls and bookies were saying. I don’t know what to tell you. The party in power usually loses seats on off years. Trump’s party has already lost big in Alabama and Virginia elections.

    In 2016 the polls were wrong at the state level. I believe the national polls were almost right on predicting the vote. They aren’t getting enough responses in certain demos in certain states. Hopefully they learned.

    why are you obsessed with my memory. First you praised my memory then you said I couldn’t remember anything…

  125. 625

    RE: pfft @ 623 – I’m obsessed with your memory because you keep forgetting everything already discussed. It gets annoying.

    But speaking of bad memories, I don’t remember if I shared this with you. This is NOT WORK SAFE, and is a piece done a day after the election by someone who could be described as the British Colbert back when Colbert was a character. It really is directed at people like you who didn’t have a clue about Hillary, and fits almost perfectly everything I thought about the election (except I didn’t want either one to win).

    Again, not work safe! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GLG9g7BcjKs

  126. 626
    pfft says:

    Kary I never said I predicted Trump was going to win…don’t know why my memory keeps coming up.

    “Im obsessed with your memory because you keep forgetting everything already discussed. It gets annoying.”

    like what?

  127. 627
    Kmac says:

    RE: pfft @ 625
    Are you for real or just play the part of circus clown?

    By Kary L. Krismer @ 619: –

    Regence pulled out of almost all of Washington state, leaving only Premerea as the remaining traditional insurer, but with premiums roughly $300 more a month than what I was paying last year. I’ve been forced to go to Kaiser, so I could I not keep my doctor or my insurance (something Obama admitted lying about to get Obamacare passed). .

    Exact same thing here.
    I bet Kaiser/ Group Health took on a lot of new members this time around.
    This entire thing is very inconvenient and annoying, almost to the point of chancing going without and saving the premium.

    And a little factoid that very few people know:
    If you need on the job insurance coverage and are not subject to LnI industrial insurance, you are not covered by any health insurer except Lifewise (Premera).
    Lifewise is currently the only insurance co doing business in WA that will cover on the job accidents that would normally have been subject to state industrial insurance.
    This may apply to self employed individuals or exempt corp. officers for activities within the scope of the business.
    Read the contract!

  128. 628
    pfft says:

    RE: Kmac @ 626 – not following you. I can’t only give my opinion based on the evidence. The evidence pointed to a Clinton win. not sure what you want. I am the one who actually posts links and sources, not sure why that makes me a clown.

  129. 629
    Rupert D says:

    The Tim – where are you? Also please use your executive power to excommunicate pfft from this site.

  130. 630
    Eastsider says:

    RE: Rupert D @ 628 – Thumbs up!

  131. 631

    RE: David @ 612
    Californians Hate Sanctuary Cities

    Its 65% against them even for Legal American Hispanics.

  132. 632

    RE: pfft @ 627
    Pfft Don’t Feel Bad

    The North Korean Denuclear effort is working?

    Now you don’t have to worry about Rocket Man?

    I know, Trumps still botched it….LOL

  133. 633
    David says:

    RE: softwarengineer @ 631 – I hope Trump doesn’t fall into the foreign-policy-ego-triumph trap. He was voted in for DOMESTIC policy and ILLEGAL ALIEN immigration policies.

    We will lose a ground war with China – period. I just don’t see US citizens doing anything but rebelling against the US Government if that happens. Trump’s presidency will be over immediately if that happens – ousted by Congress and a humiliating and economically destroyed USA will be the fruit.

    On the other hand, if he sticks to domestic policy – I see California under MILITARY ADMINISTRATION within 18 months. (Maybe Washington state too)

  134. 634

    RE: David @ 632 – A ground war with China? What are we going to do? Free Tibet?

    On the topic of China, sort of, here’s a piece the PBS News Hour did last night on the Trump guy pushing tariffs.

    https://www.pbs.org/newshour/show/meet-the-trump-trade-adviser-whose-tariff-policy-is-about-to-be-tested

    Personally I don’t like the approach, and consider it to be somewhat of a shotgun approach. If you have a claim of dumping, make a claim of dumping. The only thing that makes me think this might not be a bad idea is that I don’t entirely trust the free trade proponents.

  135. 635
    wreckingbull says:

    RE: Kmac @ 626 – It’s interesting you bring this up. I just talked to a guy who dealt with this. In my county, Kaiser is the only choice. All other insurance companies have given up. He could not get any coverage because Kaiser deemed his vocation too risky. What can he do? Nothing it seems.

    The unraveling continues….

  136. 636

    RE: wreckingbull @ 634 – This happened before over 15 years ago when Washington tried to do away with preexisting conditions. All the carriers started pulling out. Fortunately Washington’s legislature was able to act to correct their mistake. Don’t expect the same type of action out of Congress. They’ve actually made it worse by removing the tiny tiny tax penalty for not having insurance (unless maybe that causes the entire act to be declared unconstitutional).

  137. 637
    uwp says:

    It’s almost like healthcare/insurance isn’t something the all powerful market is well positioned to provide.

  138. 638
    wreckingbull says:

    RE: uwp @ 636 – I can’t tell if your post is sarcastic or not. What exists today is anything but a market. If it was, you could tell me the price of an MRI, hip replacement, or child birth.

  139. 639
    David says:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 633 – One of my Chinese business partners came here last year and fell in love with the Ford F-150 pickup truck. He checked into exporting it back to China and it would have cost ~$150k for the truck. China has multiple layers of taxes on imports.

    I have no problem with the puny, frankly, tariffs on steel/aluminum. The opportunity cost on a product you cannot sell is probably higher than these tariffs.

  140. 640

    By wreckingbull @ 637:

    RE: uwp @ 636 – I can’t tell if your post is sarcastic or not. What exists today is anything but insurance.

    Fixed your post. Covering things that have already occurred is not insurance. It would be like getting into an accident and then trying to get insurance to cover it. (Something an old neighbor of mine tried!) That would be terribly expensive.

    It’s not terribly surprising that the free market system is not adept at what is in essence wealth transfer. This should be a government program if they want to cover pre-existing.

  141. 641
  142. 642

    Here’s something that should be of interest over at Crosscut. It’s about how inept Seattle is dealing with affordable housing.

    https://crosscut.com/2018/03/more-housing-less-bureaucracy-thatll-solve-housing-crisis

  143. 643
    Erik says:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 641
    My condos are for sale if someone can’t find a place to live. Sale price is 2X the purchase price. This deal won’t last. Buy from me next year and the sale price will be higher.

  144. 644
    Brian says:

    Interesting, haven’t looked in a while but the SFH listings are down only 19 units from this time last year (3/10/2017, 2nd friday of march).

    3/10/2017, 3:00pm: 1554
    3/09/2017, 3:00pm: 1535 (-1.2% YOY)

    The gap has been closed incredibly fast over the past 2 months, since interest rates skyrocketed:
    1/2/2017, 3:00pm: 1528
    1/1/2018, 3:00pm: 1102 (-27.9% YOY)

    YOY inventory gains finally around the corner?

  145. 645
    Eastsider says:

    Here is some data that should raise alarm.

    1 yr LIBOR 2.52% vs 1.80% a year ago

    The increase of 72bps is significantly higher than the 20bps increase in the 30yr fixed rate mortgage. According to Wikipedia, in 2012, around 45 percent of prime adjustable rate mortgages and more than 80 percent of subprime mortgages were indexed to the Libor. The marginal player here, subprime mortgages (surprise!) will bear the brunt of higher interest rate when ARM rates reset. Even for prime mortgages, the 40% increase in LIBOR in the past year is going to hurt (although the actual % increase is much less due to margin.)

    If even the permabull Erik is selling, you may want to look for the fire exit now…

  146. 646
    QA Observer says:

    When waiting around for the semi-monthly SB newsletter to appear, I noticed the topics sure do drift a bit.

  147. 647

    RE: QA Observer @ 645 – I’ll try to stay on topic.

    Damn, that inventory is low! ;-)

  148. 648
    Kmac says:

    And it’s a seller’s market with no end in sight!

  149. 649

    RE: pfft @ 539
    Pffft? North Korea Peace Caused By Steel Tarriffs from China?

    Connect the dots and see what a good steel tariff did to Rocket Man….and thank God for world peace.

    Politics is a COMPLETE moot point, but you open border progressives will never admit it took strength and honesty to get world peace….not cowardly bribery like past presidents the LAST 20 YEARS.

    Don’t you want America to get back on its feet and be proud again?

    BTW Pffft, they did a Poll….about 70% HATE sanctuary cities in the states like Washington that do it…so why are we defying Washington State citizens polled desires???? Progressives are the real Fascists???

  150. 650
    pfft says:

    By softwarengineer @ 630:

    RE: David @ 612
    Californians Hate Sanctuary Cities

    Its 65% against them even for Legal American Hispanics.

    link buddy or it didn’t happen.

  151. 651
    pfft says:

    By softwarengineer @ 631:

    RE: pfft @ 627
    Pfft Don’t Feel Bad

    The North Korean Denuclear effort is working?

    Now you don’t have to worry about Rocket Man?

    I know, Trumps still botched it….LOL

    Trump has done a terrible job with North Korea. How many tests have they done? How many times have they insulted Trump? Remember Trump saying we had ships steaming towards North Korea but in reality they were going the other way? Trump has been nothing but an embarrassment. It’s the South Koreans that are doing it all.

    The day South Korea made it’s announcement Rex Tillerson our Secretary of State/Exxon CEO/Russian Order of Friendship medal winner said we were a long way from talks with North Korea.

    U.S. Is a ‘Long Way’ From Talks With North Korea, Tillerson Says
    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-03-08/u-s-is-a-long-way-from-talks-with-north-korea-tillerson-says

    You watch, David Dennison is going to screw it up.

  152. 652
    pfft says:

    By wreckingbull @ 637:

    RE: uwp @ 636 – I can’t tell if your post is sarcastic or not. What exists today is anything but a market. If it was, you could tell me the price of an MRI, hip replacement, or child birth.

    we don’t have a market because markets don’t work for healthcare.

  153. 653
    pfft says:

    By softwarengineer @ 648:

    RE: pfft @ 539
    Pffft? North Korea Peace Caused By Steel Tarriffs from China?

    Connect the dots and see what a good steel tariff did to Rocket Man….and thank God for world peace.

    Politics is a COMPLETE moot point, but you open border progressives will never admit it took strength and honesty to get world peace….not cowardly bribery like past presidents the LAST 20 YEARS.

    Don’t you want America to get back on its feet and be proud again?

    BTW Pffft, they did a Poll….about 70% HATE sanctuary cities in the states like Washington that do it…so why are we defying Washington State citizens polled desires???? Progressives are the real Fascists???

    there is no such thing as a sanctuary city for the most part. What a sanctuary city is is if the police show up at your door they won’t ask your immigration status. They are trying to solve crimes not deport people. studies show “sanctuary cities” are safer. When people are afraid to report crimes because they are here illegally crime goes up and crimes go unsolved. People know they can commit crimes and prey on illegal immigrants.

    https://www.npr.org/sections/codeswitch/2017/01/29/512002076/why-sanctuary-cities-are-safer

    US police chiefs are fighting the crackdown on “sanctuary cities”
    https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2017/8/18/16130954/police-sanctuary-cities

    Fearing deportation, undocumented immigrants wary of reporting crimes
    https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/mar/23/undocumented-immigrants-wary-report-crimes-deportation

    Obama Has Deported More People Than Any Other President
    http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/obamas-deportation-policy-numbers/story?id=41715661

    “BTW Pffft, they did a Poll….about 70% HATE sanctuary cities in the states like Washington that do it”

    Link please. Who did the poll, Breitbart?

  154. 654
    David says:

    RE: pfft @ 650 – Trump should tell the N Koreans that the only thing to offer is a safe place to get fatter instead of being murdered by his own people.

    And stop reading the Seattle Times – it distorts your mind.

  155. 655
    GoElsewhere says:

    Can a mod mute David he is derailing this whole thread.

  156. 656
    Blurtman says:

    Real Estate Collapse – Sell Your House Now

    Thesis: Minuscule average wage increases skewed by the effects of rising inequality, with median wages continuing to decrease. “We don’t have supply at prices that anyone can afford.” Housing liquidity crisis coming – unregulated non-bank mortgage providers are providing liars loans. They will go under. Same position as banks got into before.

    https://www.themaven.net/mishtalk/economics/phil-hulett-and-friends-real-estate-collapse-sell-your-house-now-11GverCpLk62W6zhn1YKFg

    Never heard the non-bank crisis viewpoint before. Comments?

  157. 657
    Blurtman says:

    After subprime collapse, nonbank lenders again dominate riskier mortgages

    PennyMac, AmeriHome Mortgage and Stearns Lending have several things in common. All are among the nation’s largest mortgage lenders — and none of them is a bank. They’re part of a growing class of alternative lenders that now extend more than 4 in 10 home loans.

    All are headquartered in Southern California, the epicenter of the last decade’s subprime lending industry. And all are run by former executives of Countrywide Financial, the once-giant mortgage lender that made tens of billions of dollars in risky loans that contributed to the 2008 financial crisis. This time, the executives say, will be different.

    Unlike their subprime forebears, the firms maintain that they adhere to strict new lending standards to protect against mass defaults.

    Still, some observers worry as housing markets heat up across the country and in Southern California, where prices are up by a third since 2012. So-called nonbank lenders are again dominating a riskier corner of the housing market — this time, loans insured by the Federal Housing Administration, aimed at first-time and bad-credit buyers. Such lenders now control 64% of the market for FHA and similar Veterans Affairs loans, compared with 18% in 2010.

    A Times analysis of federal loan data shows that FHA mortgages from nonbank lenders are seeing more delinquencies than similar loans from banks. Just 0.9% of FHA-insured loans issued by banks from October 2013 to September of this year were seriously delinquent — several months behind — compared with 1.1% of nonbank loans. Put another way, nonbank FHA loans are about 23% more likely to go bad than those issued by banks.
    ————
    FOR THE RECORD:
    Nonbank lenders: In the Nov. 30 Section A, an article about the growth of nonbank mortgage lenders said that a review of federal loan data showed that nonbank FHA and VA loans were about 23% more likely to go bad than those issued by banks. The data did not include VA-backed loans.
    ————
    Consumer advocates worry that the new crop of mortgage companies, particularly those with ties to now-defunct subprime lenders, may again take advantage of borrowers. “The idea that a lot of the folks who benefited during subprime are now back in action calls out for closer scrutiny,” said Kevin Stein, associate director of the California Reinvestment Coalition, a fair-lending advocacy group in San Francisco.

    The surge in nonbank lending also has prompted alarm at Ginnie Mae, a government corporation that monitors FHA and VA lenders. Ginnie Mae’s president, Ted Tozer, has requested $5 million in additional federal funding to hire 33 additional regulators.
    “These firms have grown so fast,” he said.

    FHA borrowers can put down as little as 3.5% of the loan amount and have a credit score as low as 580, which could signal a past bankruptcy or debts sent to collection. Even for borrowers with good credit, smaller down payments add risk. If home prices fall even a little, those borrowers can end up owing more than their homes are worth, which can encourage some to default.

    But a small down payment was attractive for Abraham and Crystal Cardona. They both have high credit scores, approaching 800, but in September they chose an FHA loan from a nonbank lender when they bought a $500,000 home in La Mirada.

    The minimal down payment of $17,000 left them enough savings to buy a few appliances and put a fence around their backyard pool. “We were thinking about what our monthly payment was going to be, not where the loan was coming from,” said Abraham Cardona, 32.
    In 2005, nonbank lenders, many peddling subprime loans, accounted for 31% of all home loans, according to a Goldman Sachs report.

    Many of those firms went under. By 2009, just 10% of home loans came from nonblanks. But last year, nonbanks accounted for 42% of all mortgages. At a September conference, John Shrewsberry, Wells Fargo’s chief financial officer, said the bank was not interested in making loans to riskier borrowers, even those who meet FHA standards. “Those are the loans that are going to default, and those are the defaults we are going to be arguing about 10 years from now,” he said. “We are not going to do that again.”

    The bank pullback is a problem for Ginnie Mae, which guarantees FHA and VA loans that are bundled as bonds and sold to investors. It’s much easier to ensure that banks have reserves to cover defaults than it is for the crop of new lenders, with a variety of business models. “Where’s the money going to come from?” Tozer asked. “We want to make sure everyone’s going to be there when the next downturn comes.”

    Consider Moorpark-based PennyMac, now the nation’s sixth-largest mortgage lender, according to trade publication Inside Mortgage Finance. It has a corporate structure that might be difficult for regulators to grasp. The business is two separate-but-related publicly traded companies, one that originates and services mortgages, the other a real estate investment trust that buys mortgages.
    SIGN UP for the free California Inc. business newsletter >>

    PennyMac is run by Stanford Kurland. He was the second-in-command to Angelo Mozilo, the Countrywide founder who came to symbolize the excesses of the subprime mortgage boom. Kurland maintains that PennyMac isn’t overly complicated and takes pains to distance himself from subprime excesses. He was fired from Countrywide in late 2006, before the worst of its loans were made, because of disagreements with other executives, he said.

    Two years later, he and other former Countrywide executives founded PennyMac, which made $36.9 billion in mortgages in the first nine months of this year. Kurland said he agrees that Ginnie Mae needs more resources to monitor nonbank lenders, but he bristles at the notion that they are making riskier loans. “The fact that someone is a nonbank doesn’t give them the ability to originate a loan outside of the standards,” he said. Kurland noted that PennyMac’s FHA borrowers have an average credit score of 692, above the FHA average of 679.

    At Stearns Lending in Santa Ana, the delinquency rate for loans issued over the last two years was 0.8%, slightly lower than the average rate for banks. “As you start peeling through the banks and nonbanks, you’ll find people massively underperforming and massively overperforming,” said Brian Hale, Stearns’ chief executive and a former Countrywide division president. “It comes down to execution.”

    Delinquency rates do vary, according to data from the Department of Housing and Urban Development.
    FHA loans from Anaheim nonbank lender Carrington Mortgage Services, for instance, have a delinquency rate of about 2.9%, while loans from Detroit nonbank giant QuickenLoans have a delinquency rate of just 0.4%. Among banks, Wells Fargo’s rate is just 0.5%, while at Great Plains Bank in Elk City, Okla., it is 2%.

    For now, regulators aren’t worried. Sandra Thompson, a deputy director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency, which oversees government-sponsored mortgage buyers Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, said nonbank lenders play an important role. “We want to make sure there is broad liquidity in the mortgage market,” she said. “It gives borrowers options.” For now, those options look relatively safe.

    Rules in the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform Act of 2010, enforced by the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, require all lenders to look at borrowers’ income, assets and debts to verify that they can afford repayment — something subprime lenders never had to do. Related rules also give lenders some legal protection when they underwrite loans to meet the federal standard for a “qualified mortgage.”

    Still, there’s market share to be gained from originating loans outside those standards.
    Irvine’s Impac Mortgage, a publicly traded nonbank lender, nearly went bust during the housing crisis because it specialized in Alt-A mortgages, loans extended without proof of income or assets. Now it’s back in the lending business, largely originating standard, government-backed loans. But about a year ago it started offering “AltQM” loans, as in: alternative to qualified mortgages. These higher-rate mortgages might feature interest-only payment periods, adjustable rates or exceed debt guidelines. The company declined to comment, but noted in filings that it targets borrowers who need more flexibility, which could mean wealthy customers with other big loans.

    For now, bond investors are playing it safe, preferring low-yield bonds backed by qualified mortgages, especially after so many took a bath on riskier mortgage bonds a decade ago. But some expect investors will eventually gain an appetite for higher-yielding bonds backed by riskier mortgages, which would encourage more lenders to issue them. “Everybody is saying they learned their lesson,” said Guy Cecala, publisher of Inside Mortgage Finance. “But we know everyone has short memories.”

    http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-nonbank-lenders-20151130-story.html

  158. 658
    Eastsider says:

    RE: pfft @ 653 – Since you like ‘links’ so much, here you go –

    California Law Enforcement Groups Say Sanctuary Law Makes Communities Less Safe
    http://freebeacon.com/national-security/california-law-enforcement-groups-say-sanctuary-law-makes-communities-less-safe/

    “I do believe those who voted for this law are making California less safe, and at some point, there is going to be an incident that is going to backfire on the legislature when one of these criminal aliens is released,” said Michael Durant, president of the Peace Officers Research Association of California, a union representing 70,000 law enforcement officers in California and Nevada.

    Now back to Seattle RE bubble… lol

  159. 659
    pfft says:

    By Eastsider @ 658:

    RE: pfft @ 653 – Since you like ‘links’ so much, here you go –

    California Law Enforcement Groups Say Sanctuary Law Makes Communities Less Safe
    http://freebeacon.com/national-security/california-law-enforcement-groups-say-sanctuary-law-makes-communities-less-safe/

    “I do believe those who voted for this law are making California less safe, and at some point, there is going to be an incident that is going to backfire on the legislature when one of these criminal aliens is released,” said Michael Durant, president of the Peace Officers Research Association of California, a union representing 70,000 law enforcement officers in California and Nevada.

    Now back to Seattle RE bubble… lol

    “at some point, there is going to be an incident that is going to backfire on the legislature when one of these criminal aliens is released,”

    it’s unconstitutional for someone to be held one minute longer than their sentence. Already been ruled.

    Federal judge: Holding inmates longer on immigration detainers is unconstitutional
    https://thinkprogress.org/immigration-detainers-unconstituitonal-9fde460fdeca/

    from the article

    “Birotte held that holding inmates beyond their release dates on the basis of immigration detainers constitutes a new arrest under the Fourth Amendment, and thus the Sherriff’s Department could only arrest those people if officers had probable cause to suspect that the individuals were involved in criminal activity. “

  160. 660
    pfft says:

    RE: Blurtman @ 656 – price to rent ratios aren’t looking bubbly at least by 2008 standards.

    http://www.calculatedriskblog.com/2018/01/real-house-prices-and-price-to-rent.html

    If you believe inflation is massively understated then home price are even cheaper adjusted for inflation.

  161. 661
    Cap"n says:

    New posts plummet, informative comments still scarce.

  162. 662
  163. 663
    Rupert D says:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 660
    He is a Stanford grad after all. Saved 3-5% agent fee but now must pay top marginal CA state tax rate on income over $1mil of 13.3% – ouch, I guess the sunshine and media attention of SanFran supersedes everything else.

  164. 664

    RE: Rupert D @ 661 – Not to mention he apparently took an offer without allowing at least a weekend for other offers to come in! Although in fairness, a lot of sellers with agents do that!

  165. 665

    By Rupert D @ 661:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 660
    He is a Stanford grad after all. Saved 3-5% agent fee but now must pay top marginal CA state tax rate on income over $1mil of 13.3% – ouch, I guess the sunshine and media attention of SanFran supersedes everything else.

    BTW, if he lives in CA this might not matter. I suspect all his NFL earnings would be taxed by CA. If not, then it probably means that at least 50% of his games would be taxed. I’m assuming the NFL works for players the same as if you have a racehorse that runs in CA. In the racehorse case they’ll tax the owner even if the owner never steps foot in CA.

    So for NFL players, which states they have to pay income tax in may depend on each year’s schedule.

    BTW, I don’t see being a 49er being an advantage in any way. Maybe local advertising endorsements? But it’s a team with rather bad management, so somewhat of a risky move.

  166. 666
    Rupert D says:

    Hopefully we will not see him in a commercial carrying a toilet out of a house like that other ex Seahawk did (while he was in Seattle)RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 663

  167. 667

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 634
    China Makes Half the Worlds’ Steel

    I need to see the cost proposals in English Writing of Seattle’s 737 parts material sources from Japan….I don’t trust ’em…..Boeing and Japan are “masking” China steel use in 737s…..BTW, they don’t give us the Japanese cost proposals….trust me they say? LOL

  168. 668

    RE: softwarengineer @ 665 – How much steel is there in a 737?

  169. 669
    pfft says:

    By Kary L. Krismer @ 663:

    By Rupert D @ 661:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 660
    He is a Stanford grad after all. Saved 3-5% agent fee but now must pay top marginal CA state tax rate on income over $1mil of 13.3% – ouch, I guess the sunshine and media attention of SanFran supersedes everything else.

    BTW, if he lives in CA this might not matter. I suspect all his NFL earnings would be taxed by CA. If not, then it probably means that at least 50% of his games would be taxed. I’m assuming the NFL works for players the same as if you have a racehorse that runs in CA. In the racehorse case they’ll tax the owner even if the owner never steps foot in CA.

    So for NFL players, which states they have to pay income tax in may depend on each year’s schedule.

    BTW, I don’t see being a 49er being an advantage in any way. Maybe local advertising endorsements? But it’s a team with rather bad management, so somewhat of a risky move.

    I think for each game they take taxes out in the state where the game is played. So I think it’s 50%.

    People think that athletes make decisions on where they play on taxes but that doesn’t ever seem to be the case. It’s usually just the pundits on CNBC that talk about that.

    “But it’s a team with rather bad management, so somewhat of a risky move.”

    don’t you watch football? Jimmy G is pretty good. He went 5-0 last year.

  170. 670
    pfft says:

    By softwarengineer @ 665:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 634
    China Makes Half the Worlds’ Steel

    I need to see the cost proposals in English Writing of Seattle’s 737 parts material sources from Japan….I don’t trust ’em…..Boeing and Japan are “masking” China steel use in 737s…..BTW, they don’t give us the Japanese cost proposals….trust me they say? LOL

    I think they can track where steel comes from. If Japan uses Chinese steel that’s no so bad. Japan just probably added value to it. that’s where the money is.

  171. 671

    By pfft @ 667:

    don’t you watch football? Jimmy G is pretty good. He went 5-0 last year.

    All the more remarkable being with the 49ers, but that’s hardly a long track record.

  172. 672
    kenmorem says:

    does anyone have data/links on the impacts of light rail stations on property value and rental rates?
    best, but older, article i see on this is: https://www.seattletimes.com/business/study-to-live-near-transit-in-seattle-youll-have-to-pay-up/

    there’s also a thesis from someone at the UW, but i trust that with as much as i trust this david guy in this comment section.

  173. 673
    David says:

    Take my word for it – millions of people are paying a huge tax increase to make the light rail posh life possible. It helps property values.

    By kenmorem @ 670:

    does anyone have data/links on the impacts of light rail stations on property value and rental rates?
    best, but older, article i see on this is: https://www.seattletimes.com/business/study-to-live-near-transit-in-seattle-youll-have-to-pay-up/

    there’s also a thesis from someone at the UW, but i trust that with as much as i trust this david guy in this comment section.

  174. 674
    Erik says:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 526
    Demand represents the number of homes purchased. You are trying to make the argument demand is the number of homes people want to purchase. Wanting to purchase and purchasing are completely different.

  175. 675
    Southsounder says:

    RE: Erik @ 672

    Demand is the number of homes purchased. Demand curve is the number of homes that would be purchased at different price points. I think Kary had it right but communicated it in a less concise manner.

  176. 676

    By Erik @ 672:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 526
    Demand represents the number of homes purchased. You are trying to make the argument demand is the number of homes people want to purchase. Wanting to purchase and purchasing are completely different.

    No it doesn’t. The number of homes purchased is merely volume at a point in time. You don’t know whether there was one buyer for each house or 25. The total number of active buyers (successful and unsuccessful) is closer to demand than volume, but not quite the same.

    Again, realize that demand is typically plotted as a line with the price being the verticle axis and volume being the horizontal axis. It’s then plotted against the supply line which moves in the opposite direction. The number you’re pointing to is merely the intersection of those lines (if houses were fungible), and neither supply or demand.

    This might help you (it appears accurate, but I haven’t read it all): https://www.investopedia.com/university/economics/economics3.asp

  177. 677

    RE: kenmorem @ 670 – I think proximity to light rail is undoubtedly a draw, but it would be hard to quantify because as I just mentioned houses are not fungible and you’d need to go back to before the decision to build was announced.

    If you work downtown or frequently go to the airport it would be a huge draw. At one time I had a search which was of listings within a half mile of each station.

  178. 678
    David B. says:

    By Kary L. Krismer @ 666:

    RE: softwarengineer @ 665 – How much steel is there in a 737?

    737’s are mostly made of steel, as everybody knows. The Trump-bashing open borders globalists disagree, but who would take any of them seriously? Some of that crowd even assert the Earth is round and older than 6,000 years when the Bible clearly says otherwise! ‘Nuff said.

  179. 679
    pfft says:

    By David @ 671:

    Take my word for it – millions of people are paying a huge tax increase to make the light rail posh life possible. It helps property values.

    By kenmorem @ 670:

    does anyone have data/links on the impacts of light rail stations on property value and rental rates?
    best, but older, article i see on this is: https://www.seattletimes.com/business/study-to-live-near-transit-in-seattle-youll-have-to-pay-up/

    there’s also a thesis from someone at the UW, but i trust that with as much as i trust this david guy in this comment section.

    EVERYONE gets their own light rail car. It’s like the gilded age all over again.
    /sarcasm.

  180. 680
    pfft says:

    By David B. @ 676:

    By Kary L. Krismer @ 666:

    RE: softwarengineer @ 665 – How much steel is there in a 737?

    737’s are mostly made of steel, as everybody knows. The Trump-bashing open borders globalists disagree, but who would take any of them seriously? Some of that crowd even assert the Earth is round and older than 6,000 years when the Bible clearly says otherwise! ‘Nuff said.

    that’s funny.

  181. 681

    By David B. @ 676:

    By Kary L. Krismer @ 666:

    RE: softwarengineer @ 665 – How much steel is there in a 737?

    737’s are mostly made of steel, as everybody knows. The Trump-bashing open borders globalists disagree, but who would take any of them seriously? Some of that crowd even assert the Earth is round and older than 6,000 years when the Bible clearly says otherwise! ‘Nuff said.

    Clearly my post questioning the amount of steel was the devil’s work, as it was #666.

    BTW, I think it might have been that PBS link I posted above where the proponent of the tariffs claimed that the aluminum tariffs on a plane would cost about $25,000, which is pretty insignificant relative to the cost of a 737.

  182. 682
    whatsmyname says:

    Tim, have you become so enamored with Ciara that you’ve forgotten the team? Nothing good ever comes of that.

  183. 683

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 666
    The Critical Safety Parts

    Like landing gear assemblies contain high strength steel….the prices per part are HORRIFYING BTW. Steel has always been considered a security material and made in America is a requirement not a Boeing option.

  184. 684

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 679
    Security and Technology Stealing

    Are not cheap. They can topple a nation alone in wartime.

  185. 685
    David says:

    RE: softwarengineer @ 682 – Americans have become so cynical, debased, and confused about even basic things like “Am I a boy or girl” that they literally are willing to self-immolate economically. It is just a matter of time til the USA goes belly up economically. Our housing values are going to eventually be a leading indicator of that.

    And I always remind people that 50% of the population is less intelligent than the other 50%. And that the vast bulk of that lowest 50% vote Democrat.

  186. 686
    uwp says:

    RE: David @ 683
    https://www.cnn.com/election/2016/results/exit-polls

    Clinton won college grads, Trump won high school or less. We can argue about what is “less intelligent,” but it’s better than you just making things up.

  187. 687
    David says:

    RE: uwp @ 684 – You misstate the facts. You need to break that down into discreet facts. You can still be in the lowest 50% intellectually with a college degree. And the Democrat base heavily depends on less intelligent people voting for them.

  188. 688
    David says:

    I have one of my houses for sale. Woodpeckers are literally using my roof as a love-drum .

    Go away birds.

  189. 689

    RE: David @ 686 – I have a metal rain cap on my chimney. After I moved in I heard the rapid tapping, but it sounded very mechanical. I thought my house maybe had a sump pump or some other device that I didn’t know about and that was going bad or something. Took me quite a while to figure out what it was–and even when I did it was still annoying. Fortunately that bird is now past his normal life-span and no other birds have thought that a good place to peck.

  190. 690
    tastaolletes says:

    RE: David @ 685 – Your argument might be more convincing if you used the right spelling of ‘discrete.’

    ‘Discreet’ = judicious in one’s conduct or speech. ‘Discrete’ = different, separate.

    Signed,
    An intelligent and college-educated Democrat

  191. 691
    pfft says:

    By David @ 683:

    RE: softwarengineer @ 682 – Americans have become so cynical, debased, and confused about even basic things like “Am I a boy or girl” that they literally are willing to self-immolate economically. It is just a matter of time til the USA goes belly up economically. Our housing values are going to eventually be a leading indicator of that.

    And I always remind people that 50% of the population is less intelligent than the other 50%. And that the vast bulk of that lowest 50% vote Democrat.

    are you guys really trashing transgender kids? Shameful. You guys are making a new low.

  192. 692
    David says:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 687 – I thought the same thing about 2 weeks ago when I heard it the first time. It is amazing how electro-mechanical it sounds. I was checking security cameras all around the perimeter until I realized it was randy woodpeckers.

    Kinda sordid – 50 Shades of Pecker playing right up on my roof.

  193. 693
    David says:

    On a side-note – Redfin posted a ‘closed’ sale on a property near one of mine as being $400k less than it sold for. Scrivener’s error – unnerving though.

  194. 694
    pfft says:

    By David @ 685:

    RE: uwp @ 684 – You misstate the facts. You need to break that down into discreet facts. You can still be in the lowest 50% intellectually with a college degree. And the Democrat base heavily depends on less intelligent people voting for them.

    Republicans don’t believe in science…
    Republicans just lost a district that went +20 for Trump. The Democratic wave in 2018 is going to give them back the house and maybe more.

    Donald Trump loves the poorly educated.

  195. 695
    David says:

    RE: pfft @ 691 – You are missing the forest for the trees. Doug Jones in Alabama was one off, apprently so is Saccone in PA. Bad condidates.

    It is MORE likely the Republicans pick up Senate seats. And stay even in the House.

  196. 696
    Eastsider says:

    By pfft @ 688:

    are you guys really trashing transgender kids? Shameful. You guys are making a new low.

    You really care about transgender kids?! How about ‘The day my four-year-old son told me he was a girl’?! SMH.

  197. 697
    pfft says:

    By David @ 692:

    RE: pfft @ 691 – You are missing the forest for the trees. Doug Jones in Alabama was one off, apprently so is Saccone in PA. Bad condidates.

    It is MORE likely the Republicans pick up Senate seats. And stay even in the House.

    Democrats are going to win the House 100%. Trump is a deeply unpopular President. Under his watch Republicans have lost big in Virginia, PA and Alabama. They lost a Senate in Albama! You have to really try to do that. There are over a 100 districts that are LESS Republican than the Pennsylvania district they just lost. Republicans going to lose tons of seats. Predictit has Dems at a 66% chance to win the House in 2018. Too low IMHO(I have no humble opinions).

  198. 698
    pfft says:

    By Eastsider @ 693:

    By pfft @ 688:

    are you guys really trashing transgender kids? Shameful. You guys are making a new low.

    You really care about transgender kids?! How about ‘The day my four-year-old son told me he was a girl’?! SMH.

    You are real piece of work. Shamefully picking on kids. Another new low.

    Myth #7: Children aren’t old enough to know their gender identity
    https://www.vox.com/cards/transgender-myths-fiction-facts/transgender-children-too-young-fiction

  199. 699

    By uwp @ 684:

    RE: David @ 683
    https://www.cnn.com/election/2016/results/exit-polls

    Clinton won college grads, Trump won high school or less. We can argue about what is “less intelligent,” but it’s better than you just making things up.

    That I would agree with, but also note that election was highly unusual. I’ve said in the past that probably more people voted against each of the candidates than voted for them.

    Intelligent or not, I will say the Hillary supporters (as distinguished from those who merely voted for her) were very gullible. I never understood why they thought she was a qualified candidate. The show Blackish even used that as a punchline after the election (“She was the most qualified!” [laughter]). She wasn’t even qualified to be a national news anchor for NBC! (Brian Williams reference). But the Democrats still thought–She’ll do! ;-)

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/fact-checker/wp/2016/05/23/recalling-hillary-clintons-claim-of-landing-under-sniper-fire-in-bosnia/?utm_term=.29b3760727cc

  200. 700
    David says:

    You are advocating child abuse. I thought I could grow up to be a fire truck when I was a kid. Part of basic intelligence is knowing the difference between boys and girls.

    Also, you clearly don’t understand people in Alabama.

    By pfft @ 695:

    By Eastsider @ 693:

    By pfft @ 688:

    are you guys really trashing transgender kids? Shameful. You guys are making a new low.

    You really care about transgender kids?! How about ‘The day my four-year-old son told me he was a girl’?! SMH.

    You are real piece of work. Shamefully picking on kids. Another new low.

    Myth #7: Children aren’t old enough to know their gender identity
    https://www.vox.com/cards/transgender-myths-fiction-facts/transgender-children-too-young-fiction

    RE: pfft @ 695

  201. 701
    wreckingbull says:

    RE: pfft @ 695 – Take the baiting elsewhere. It’s not really working for you.

  202. 702
    pfft says:

    By wreckingbull @ 696:

    RE: pfft @ 695 – Take the baiting elsewhere. It’s not really working for you.

    Don’t remember asking you. Who picks on kids?

    Everyone knows that Trump is a moron. Even Rex did. Republicans are going to lose the House bigly. They just can’t admit it. They are having a tough time taking all these Ls like in PA. This is just like when Democrats lost Ted’s seat in Mass after the election.

    United States Senate special election in Massachusetts, 2010
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Senate_special_election_in_Massachusetts,_2010

  203. 703
    David says:

    RE: pfft @ 697 – Are you Ed Murray?

  204. 704
    Eastsider says:

    Tim should delete every post from pfft that is unrelated to Seattle RE. He is flooding the comments section with nonsense… okay off-topic.

  205. 705
    redmondjp says:

    By Eastsider @ 699:

    Tim should delete every post from pfft that is unrelated to Seattle RE. He is flooding the comments section with nonsense… okay off-topic.

    pfft is getting paid by one of George Soros’ organizations to post that drivel here. He/she/it denies it, but the evidence is all there.

  206. 706
    Som says:

    RE: Eastsider @ 693

    You shameful rat.

  207. 707
    Som says:

    RE: David @ 683

    There is a groundbreaking study that is being published in Science next month. Tokyo University has found a DNA sequence pattern, gene, that is present in about 50% of the population. Humans who carry this gene are capable of showing compassion. They are naming the gene “The Democrat”.

    Rethuglican s c u m lack this gene.

  208. 708
    Voight-kampff says:

    I’ve been visiting this site since 2005. I have finally deciphered “the Tim’s” cryptic and brilliant genius.
    It goes like this:
    X-axis = frequency of seattle bubble updates.
    Y-axis = appreciation of seattle Realestate

    Conclusion:
    We are in a bull market.

  209. 709
    ess says:

    Real Estate Questions – Especially To Those Engaged in Selling Real Estate, and Those Hoping To Purchase –

    Has the spring push for real estate started this year yet? Is there a spring push this year?

    What are your impressions of both the market and the buyers? Has the market cooled down at all, and are buyers becoming wary for a variety of reasons – such as higher interest rates, unease with prices, lack of inventory etc.

    Are buyers getting discouraged as a result of higher prices, and are higher interest rates causing concerns that it is time to buy sooner than later?

    I ask because I have noticed that a few houses north of downtown Seattle that were on the market were bid up substantially after only a short time of being offered. Something like over ten percent of asking price. Were they outliers – or an indication of the what is coming? Is the same true for the Eastside, as well as points north and south?

  210. 710

    RE: pfft @ 668
    You Think They Can Track It? LOL!

    You remind me of the sheep trusting the wolf. I need to see the proof in writing and I’ll tell ya…..it probably is not there. Boeing doesn’t care, they want to build 737s in China anyway. They told us that.

    Boeing has been telling us for decades how China will overtake their aerospace sales with their own commercial jet low costs by 2016. Its happening now in a different way.

  211. 711

    RE: ess @ 704 – The supply is so low it’s really hard to determine if there’s a “spring push.” I’ve personally seen little sign of buyers getting discouraged.

  212. 712
    uwp says:

    Spring Buyer Anecdote:
    Two couple friends of ours went pending on houses the past week: one south (Normandy Park), one central (Magnolia). They had both been patiently searching for a year or more. Although they both had to go above their preferred price range, neither was in a bidding war.

  213. 713
    uwp says:

    Redfin report on (national) February home sales: https://www.redfin.com/blog/2018/03/market-tracker-february-2018.html

    Has some Seattle nuggets:
    “Seattle, WA was the fastest market, with half of all homes pending sale in just 8 days, down from 12 days from a year earlier. ”
    Homes sold above list price: 54.8% in Seattle, WA
    New listings up 2.2% YOY
    Total homes for sale: -21.7% YOY
    Total sales: -2.8% YOY

    Same story as the last few months it seems.

  214. 714
    longtime lurker says:

    it’s interesting how the racist, transphobic folks who are quick to tout “free speech” are calling on Tim to silence someone for daring to oppose their vileness. really makes you think 🤔

  215. 715
    OldYeller says:

    I love labs but David you need to GTFO

  216. 716
    Minnie says:

    Re: the spring push/real estate questions

    **Disclaimer: My comments are purely anecdotal, as I’m not a real estate professional and there just isn’t enough inventory so I am largely speaking about a handful of properties. Not enough to see a pattern. **

    I enjoy looking at listing photos on redfin for decorating/remodelling ideas, and if I really like what I see (and I have time) then I’ll go look in person. It’s difficult to tell the quality of a home based on listing photos sometimes. What trips me up is when I see a home intentionally under-listed, I dislike that game and Ballard was one of the pioneers. There was a home in Ceder Park that was listed at $1.1 M which I thought was low but second guessed myself because I did not tour it. Well, it closed at $1.408M. I would have thought $1.250M if you asked me. SO, I think to myself “wow, $1.1M, perhaps prices are softening”….nah. Although I have seen a few homes lately listed 20% less than I would think….are they really going to be bid up 20%!? We shall see.

    Deerhawk described the demand as it could be changing from one week to the next, snap, just like that, and I agree. Given the sheer lack of inventory, I don’t see the market softening…and with the interest rates rising it may keep more people in their homes, further reducing the inventory. It takes a little while for prices to catch up to rates…which still aren’t that high historically speaking.

    I have seen 3 people in the last few days on the nextdoor blog I belong to, listing their properties off-market on there. I am not sure about that strategy, especially since they haven’t bothered to get professional photos (small investment, a few hundred $) and of course not staged. Also offering 1% to buyers agent. Hope their transactions are smooth, could be a train wreck.

    Which leads me to a question: what is the value of staging and professional photography? I believe that it is a valuable investment in the sale of a home, but what do others think? I can share my experiences in another post if anyone cares!

    ps -please everyone, lets stop being mean on here. And no more soapboxes :-)

  217. 717
    upupup says:

    Re: spring push/real estate question.

    I purchased in December and have continued watching homes in the price range I was looking at ($400k-550k) consistently sell anywhere from $30k-130k over list. There is also virtually no inventory in that “lower” range of prices. This is South Snohomish/North King county area (Shoreline, Edmonds, Lynnwood, Brier, Mountlake Terrace, Bothell, etc).

    So if there is a spring push, it’s not yet happening around here.

  218. 718

    RE: Minnie @ 715 – Demand can change from week to week. I had a recent listing where a similar house had multiple offers the first week the week prior, but mine had only a couple, which was disappointing. Doing my due diligence on the best offer’s buyer I discovered a judgment that the lender did not know about, so we stayed on market while they figured their financing out. That next week even more offers came in even than the first week of the listing, and the best of those was for an even higher price (and higher than the similar house the week prior).

    I also had another situation where I’d been following a particular market closely for about four months, and nothing was coming on similar to my client’s property. Then the week we listed, two similar properties can on. We still ended up with multiple offers, but would have almost certainly received more but for those other listings. So the active listing inventory can change too from week to week.

    Oh, and BTW, even listing the same week, that one in Ballard might not have received an offer as high as 1.4 if they had listed at your value. Sometimes less gets more.

    Finally, photos. Getting on my soapbox yes professional photos are important, except perhaps for low end and/or fixer properties. But the risk is making the house look better than it is. The photos should accurately represent the house, or even downplay it slightly. The last thing you want is for every buyer looking at the house to be disappointed when they walk through. Stepping off box.

  219. 719
    Wile E. Millenial says:

    I like to watch comps for my dinky old house. There are eight pending sales in my neighborhood that are close enough to compare to it. Seven of the eight went off the market during the first week. The eighth one has environmental areas on the property and is awfully close to an unpleasant arterial. It took two weeks instead of one.

    Inventory is still thin but a few attractive properties have gone by, among all of the ones in flood zones, on busy roads, next to electrical substations, etc.

  220. 720
    Wile E. Millenial says:

    On my little comp spreadsheet the average sale-to-list is 109% since the new year. Highest is 120%, lowest is 96% (and it was for a real piece of crap)

  221. 721
    pfft says:

    By redmondjp @ 705:

    By Eastsider @ 699:

    Tim should delete every post from pfft that is unrelated to Seattle RE. He is flooding the comments section with nonsense… okay off-topic.

    pfft is getting paid by one of George Soros’ organizations to post that drivel here. He/she/it denies it, but the evidence is all there.

    DId Putin tell you to post that:)

    Who wants to talk about inventory? This thread was far off track before I got here, just read back a few pages.

  222. 722
    pfft says:

    By longtime lurker @ 714:

    it’s interesting how the racist, transphobic folks who are quick to tout “free speech” are calling on Tim to silence someone for daring to oppose their vileness. really makes you think 🤔

    They are so trapped in their own conservative echo chamber that when confronted by someone with a different viewpoints and some actual evidence their brains fry.

    Some of you need more heart.

  223. 723
    David says:

    RE: pfft @ 720 – You are a creep.

  224. 724
    David says:

    RE: Wile E. Millenial @ 718 – An agent told me that April is shaping up to be kind of raucous.

  225. 725
    LessonIsNeverTry says:

    Been away from the blog, patiently waiting for a new post. Thought I’d check the comments to see if there was a sign, an indication, some word from the heavens that we’ll get a March update. Instead there was this thread. Me —–> [door] . Wake me up when I can read about RE on here and not politics.

  226. 726
    pfft says:

    By David @ 721:

    RE: pfft @ 720 – You are a creep.

    nyet.

  227. 727
    Justme says:

    By Eastsider @ 704:

    Tim should delete every post from pfft that is unrelated to Seattle RE. He is flooding the comments section with nonsense… okay off-topic.

    I’d say David (the one with the dog/puppy Avatar) posts much more political stuff than pfft, and also that David’s post are much less reasoned. So if someone should get posts deleted, I’d vote for David-the-puppy.

  228. 728

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 716RE: Minnie @ 715
    Great Question

    And yes you’re well thought blog communicated clearly….in the Seattle area though good listings are like nice single women at a singles dance….surrounded by hoards of suitors….not a good place to fish at all.

    Throw your iPhone in the trash and spend your time finding the undiscovered GEMS:

    Preforeclosed properties that can become secret [1/2 price] short sales with the owner….where are they?
    Find out if a landlord is fore closing soon through a tenant….one way. The old owner get some cash and gets to keep their credit score higher…win/win. Another way? We should brain storm this question…

  229. 729

    One thing that seems to be coming back, or at least is more prevalent (it never went away) is bad flippers. I think some of them must view it as only a financial transaction, because they seemingly have no experience or understanding of what needs to be done or how things should be done.

    Or maybe it’s connected to the prior topic of contractors being busy, and how it now is more difficult to get competent contractors.

  230. 730
    uwp says:

    Pretty decent bump in inventory the past week per the sidebar tracker. Almost up to last year’s number.

  231. 731
    Eastsider says:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 727 – I recently drove past a few new SFH constructions on the eastside where high voltage power lines are on the properties! I assume the developer will be asking for over $1m as new homes in the neighborhood sell around $1.5m. We are probably at/near bubble peak…

  232. 732
    S-Crow says:

    Are you a cash buyer? Buying cash without an appraisal is akin to hiring a contractor to do an addition or remodel without a contract/proposal for the work. You are asking to get burned and there are plenty of sellers who will accommodate you.

    S-Crow

  233. 733

    RE: pfft @ 702
    You Should Become a Seer

    Your intuition into the future may have been completely wrong in the past, but we trust you now…..LOL

  234. 734

    RE: S-Crow @ 730
    I Was a Lucky Dog Cash Buyer?

    I was not burned and my mail box is always full of cash offers to buy it from me…

    Prices are so high today, if you do it conventionally, lets put it this way:

    https://www.cnbc.com/2018/03/15/bankrate-65-percent-of-americans-save-little-or-nothing.html

    Who needs the inspection teams missing everything covered with plastic sealant and white washed?

    Why are they so important? I need a written study by an independent real estate consultant to see to believe. Until then, take a chance, you’re bankrupt regardless.

  235. 735

    RE: softwarengineer @ 732
    I got My Property Tax Assessment from Kansas

    My taxes went down and my assessment went up $4K. I’m spending the assessment money on a new furnace for my investment.

    BTW….that 30-40 year old furnace you own is irreparable….you can’t get reliably available replacement parts for it anymore. Check it out. BTW, Maytag and Michellan both make JUNK now….time changes everything.

    Now that’s a better use for my money than useless inspections, IMO.

  236. 736
    Brian says:

    If snohomish county & other surrounding areas keep losing inventory (year over year) while King County starts gaining inventory, does that mean King County is officially unaffordable and we’ve reached the top?

  237. 737
    N says:

    @ Brian 734 – I think that has been the trend for the past 12 months. Rental rates in Spokane far outpaced Seattle in the last year, as did Tacoma and many other areas. A lot of people simply cannot afford the levels in Seattle anymore. But to date, there have been plenty of buyers willing and able to pay those prices. I’d be concerned about second tier areas within Seattle where to the eye it seems asking prices are up hundreds of thousands of dollars in the past 12 months. Arbor heights or anything east of 35th not long ago had many listings in the 350-500 range. Seems they are mostly $750k plus this year.

  238. 738
    Brian says:

    RE: N @ 735

    Also anecdotally, I have noticed 2 bedroom Eastside condos/townhomes are going this year for $400-450K when the same types of units were $325-375K last year.

    I wish Tim would do an update on the low, med, and high tier trends. I’m curious if the lower pricing tiers are closing the gap on the higher tiers as much as it seems. Not sure if Kary or Ardell have access to such info.

    If I take a look at the listings in Medina, well over half have been on the market for over 30 days with about a fourth on the market for over 100 days. Is that typical?

  239. 739
    ARDELL DellaLoggia says:

    RE: Brian @ 736

    I can do it for North Seattle and the Eastside but the pricing on the tiers will be different than Tim’s full County version. Just got back last night from getting a house ready for market in PA but will do it tonight. Sold a high tier in Woodridge while I was away and a Kirkland-Bothell 3 bedroom condo Just before I left. So should be easy to add some anecdotal info regarding change in number of offers with it.

  240. 740
    ARDELL DellaLoggia says:

    RE: Brian @ 736

    I can do it for North Seattle and the Eastside but the pricing on the tiers will be different than Tim’s full County version. Just got back last night from getting a house ready for market in PA but will do it tonight. Sold a high tier in Woodridge while I was away and a Kirkland-Bothell 3 bedroom condo Just before I left. So should be easy to add some anecdotal info regarding change in number of offers with it.

  241. 741
    uwp says:

    RE: Brian @ 736 – The “lower” end seems to be going crazy around here too (Greenwood). Stuff that was 600-625 last year are crossing 700k pretty easy.

    Feb 2017 – 620k – https://www.redfin.com/WA/Seattle/723-N-94th-St-98103/unit-A/home/99821
    March 2018 – 750k – https://www.redfin.com/WA/Seattle/725-N-94th-St-98103/unit-B/home/22808380 (125k over list!!)

    Downright crazy.

  242. 742
    ess says:

    By uwp @ 739:

    RE: Brian @ 736 – The “lower” end seems to be going crazy around here too (Greenwood). Stuff that was 600-625 last year are crossing 700k pretty easy.

    Feb 2017 – 620k – https://www.redfin.com/WA/Seattle/723-N-94th-St-98103/unit-A/home/99821
    March 2018 – 750k – https://www.redfin.com/WA/Seattle/725-N-94th-St-98103/unit-B/home/22808380 (125k over list!!)

    Downright crazy.

    Want to see some serious price increases? Go to one of the major real estate websites, type in houses recently sold Ballard, Seattle Wa. Notice many of the smaller to mid size houses going for 10-20% more than asking price. putting those houses in the 550K -900K level. Either there is some serious extra cash floating around the city, or there is some serious debt being taken on by home buyers.

  243. 743
    pfft says:

    By softwarengineer @ 731:

    RE: pfft @ 702
    You Should Become a Seer

    Your intuition into the future may have been completely wrong in the past, but we trust you now…..LOL

    ask Scotsman about that. He lost a bet to me after the 2012 election.

    Ok SWE, if the republicans keep the house I will not post for 2 weeks. If the dems take the House you won’t post for 2 weeks. Deal? After all I am have been wrong in the past. Deal?

  244. 744

    RE: Brian @ 736

    Brian asked for some info on this, ” I’m curious if the lower pricing tiers are closing the gap on the higher tiers as much as it seems.”

    Downward pressure on condos comes when people can afford single family homes at the same price. The single family moves down first before people opt to buy house vs condo. So the tiers don’t move in unison, especially on the way down vs up, and the movement becomes “contagious” when the gap narrows or becomes non-existent.

    Doing this as I’m typing in “real time” and using 100 days vs YTD.

    Kirkland as a whole 340 sales. 198 of those are houses and 142 of those are condos.

    Low Tier = $639,000 or less. (82% condo/condo-townhome)
    Mid Tier – $640,000 to $1,050,000 (23% condo.condo-townhomes)
    High Tier $1,050 plus

    Back to your question “” I’m curious if the lower pricing tiers are closing the gap on the higher tiers as much as it seems.”

    The answer is generally no. The gap becomes non-existent when the townhome is fee simple (lot subdivided) vs condo causing there to be almost no monthly dues. There are few of those on the Eastside and many, many and virtually all fee simple townhomes in North Seattle.

    Fee Simple row/townhome acting like single family is not new or a function of the current market beginning to “close the gap”.

    The other issue causing perception to lean toward the gap narrowing has more to do with location. A townhome in Yarrow can sell for more than a house in Kingsgate. So if you look at tiers and product without location influence there is a small overlap between single family and condo which loosely translates to low tier vs mid tier due to the %s above. But it has more to do with location specific pricing, view considerations, other things that could cause a low tier type to be in the mid tier or a house to be in low tier.

    There are no signs yet of the weakening I mentioned or any pressure between the tiers. They are all moving in unison. But as I noted above, the change is usually on the downside and not on the upside.

    The high end doesn’t trickle down. We saw that in the last unraveling of price. So watch the mid tier. When the mid tier starts to weaken it will cause the chain reaction on the other tiers.

    Running North Seattle numbers doesn’t help because the issue there between townhome and single family has more to do with new vs old given they are both fee simple most of the time. Price equalizes based on age. New townhome vs really old house. They are essentially equal and which to buy is a personal choice, but that is more a function of there being more townhome options to compete with the low tier single family. The fact that the gap is non-existent is not a new fact. That is always the case. There are just more and more of them each year to compete with the old single family homes.

    Bellevue numbers not worth running either as the appearance of no gap will be caused by old and inferior construction compared to a downtown high rise condo. Apples to Apples as to location specific, the condos and townhomes prices are not encroaching on single family.

    Redmond would be of as much interest as to seeing market movement as Kirkland, but too much product was added to 98053 in the end of the last upswing. It would only work if you did 98052 separately from 98053. Similar to Kirkland with 98033 and 98034, but with more dramatic result for same type product.

    Thanks for asking. I needed to run some numbers now that I’m back from Philly. Staging a house 2,800 miles away was interesting. :) I only have one left over buyer from last year and one of my this year buyers is already in escrow, so I don’t have a lot to do.

    To uwp: I just closed this one before leaving for PA.

    https://www.redfin.com/WA/Seattle/3527-NE-86th-St-98115/home/316346

    Once we had $75,000 over asking we didn’t wait to collect offers on Tuesday but instead just took one on Sunday. That was the weekend the stock market went down 600 points on Friday and even worse on Monday. Too much uncertainty in the market and $75,000 over asking was a more than fair price.

    I like doing sellers because staging my listings is fun. Not less work than buyers but fun in an HGTV way. Sometimes I regret turning them down to do some of those shows when they were in planning stage, but they didn’t pay enough. :)

    Brian, the towhomes that encroached on single family home prices above in the low tier did bid up substantially with many more offers than in the single family home market. The Hamilton Square that listed for $410,000 and sold for $520,000 had 21 offers. I think people didn’t step back and think about getting a single vs a townhome, but I also think that has more to do with being afraid of old houses and to some extent monster trees looming over the house. Many of the oldest houses have sizeable old trees very close to the house and one of the reasons why people opt for newer townhomes. “Newer” can be 1990-1995 when comparing to single family in the same price range.

    So far the market is the same as last year but in most cases with slightly fewer offers.

    (Required Disclosure – Stats in this post are hand calculated by Ardell in Real Time and not compiled, verified or published by The Northwest Multiple Listing Service.)

  245. 745

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 727
    The Most Honest Flipper I met Kary Was a Real Estate Agent Too

    He taught me how he got the half price homes directly from owners during the early nineties. He sold ’em for 25% off list too, shared the wealth…I would too…give the old owner some cash too, otherwise they get nothing if foreclosed.

    Flippers for bargains are not evil, if they didn’t buy it cheap, some other lucky dog would get it.

  246. 746

    RE: pfft @ 740
    Progressives Take the House?

    LOL….it was moderate Democrats that elected Trump….they better be wearing their phony Populist Halloween Costumes like Lamb did or never get elected as an open border no gun candidate.

  247. 747
    ARDELL DellaLoggia says:

    RE: softwarengineer @ 742

    Can’t wait for Kary’s Answer to this. The agent can’t share the owner’s wealth with you. It’s not his to share. I stepped into one of these a few years back. The owner ended up with that 25%, which is as it should be.

  248. 748
  249. 749
    ARDELL DellaLoggia says:

    RE: David @ 745

    Looks more like $205,000 over list. They incorporated some of that into the list in short order.

  250. 750
    David says:

    RE: ARDELL DellaLoggia @ 746 – I don’t understand this response. The house next door sold for only $10k over list the day before: https://www.redfin.com/WA/Seattle/9020-4th-Ave-S-98108/home/69354055

    Where do you get the $205k?

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