April 5, 2016

Everyone Asks, Why Does It Take So Long?

The Republican Herald reports from Pennsylvania. “The process to foreclose vacant and abandoned properties would be speeded up to fight blight under legislation written by two senators from Northeast Pennsylvania. Sens. David Argall, R-29, and John Blake, D-22, Archbald, plan to introduce a bill soon to make Pennsylvania the eighth state with a ‘fast-track’ foreclosure law. The legislation would shorten a process that can now take anywhere from 300 to 540 days and will apply only to property that meets criteria for being vacant and abandoned, the senators said.”

“Foreclosure occurs when lenders seize a property because the owner can’t keep up with mortgage payments. A lengthy foreclosure process allows properties to decay, become dangerous eyesores and reduce property values in the surrounding neighborhood, Argall said. ‘We believe we can get it down to 60 days,’ Argall said.”

The Buffalo News in New York. “It takes an average of 2.7 years to complete a foreclosure in New York State. That figure from RealtyTrac is more than a year longer than the national average, and it astounds and frustrates observers, particularly when home buyers are scouring the marketplace for deals. Everyone asks, why does it take so long, especially in cases where the properties are abandoned and have come to be known as ‘zombie homes’?”

“Assemblyman Michael Kearns, D-Buffalo, rattles off addresses of properties in Erie County with incomplete foreclosures. Oftentimes, he said, there are prospective buyers wondering why they are blocked from making deals. ‘The frustration point is that these properties have value,’ he said. Kearns mentioned a foreclosed home on Woodside Avenue in South Buffalo that a police officer wanted to purchase. A bank started a foreclosure on that property in 2010 but hasn’t completed it, he said. ‘This is an epidemic and it’s been hidden for too long.’”

The Bucyrus Telegraph on Ohio. “We’ve all seen them, the properties that aren’t maintained. The grass in the yard is rarely mowed, the paint on the house is peeling. There are literally hundreds of such properties across town, and they don’t exactly contribute toward making Bucyrus a more beautiful place to live. ‘It’s the absentee landlords, I like to use the term property hoarders. It’s people who are holding onto these properties, most of them don’t even live in town. Many of them bought in when the market was going up and now they’re stuck. I understand they may not be financially able, but that was the risk you took when you bought the property,’ said city law director Robert Ratliff.”

“‘If you paid $100,000 for a house eight years ago it’s probably only worth $60,000 today, and if it needs $20,000 in repairs and you’re already $20,000 to $40,000 underwater, who’s going to do that? We’ve got an oversupply of bad properties. We’ve got to change that equation,’ he said.”

The Mail Tribune in Oregon. “From the richest subdivisions of east Medford to the poorest neighborhoods west of the railroad tracks, 436 mostly bank-owned houses sit vacant, often attracting vagrants and drug users and creating a nuisance for their neighbors. In the Chestnut Street area west of Columbus Avenue, there are about a half-dozen boarded-up houses. One was gutted by fire years ago, and another has collapsed so that only the peak of the roof remains. ‘I’d like them to move that away,’ says Dale Greenberg, a 79-year-old neighbor. He says there are three lots and two abandoned houses remaining on them.

“On Delta Waters Road in northeast Medford, 49-year-old Jane Lee looks at two empty houses, one of which is boarded up. A third house was empty but Lee says the new owners bought it in a foreclosure sale. ‘They’ve been empty a really long time,’ she says. ‘I’m hoping somebody does something with them. It’s better than them sitting there.’”

The Las Vegas Sun in Nevada. “Las Vegas’ once-devastated housing market has turned the valley into a squatter’s paradise. The real estate industry has improved the past few years, but with thousands of empty houses still out there — after foreclosures, layoffs and other financial woes pummeled the region — police are getting a rising volume of calls about suspected squatters valleywide.”

“Metro Police said they received at least 4,458 squatter-related service calls last year, up 24 percent from 2014, 69 percent from 2013 and 169 percent from 2012. ‘They are everywhere,’ said Officer Jose Martinez, who targets squatter homes in the northwest valley. ‘There’s a very good chance that you have a squatter within a half-mile of your own house right now.’”

From Capital and Main on California. “Speaking at a real estate conference last September in Florida, Greg Geiser, CEO of Wedgewood Inc., an investment company headquartered in Redondo Beach, California, claimed that his firm is the biggest ‘fix and flip’ company in the country. But for many families, Wedgewood’s business practices are the cause of much distress. One of them is the Caamal family in Rialto, California, a working class suburb near Los Angeles. Wedgewood is trying to evict Mercedes and Pablo Caamal from their modest house, where they have lived for 10 years and in which they have invested their life savings to purchase and improve.”

“The Caamals came to the United States from Mexico in the 1970s and are American citizens. Mercedes, 58, and Pablo have both worked at cooks in local restaurants. They purchased the house in Rialto in 2006. They have five children who are pursuing successful lives. Their 19 year old daughter Daisy is a full-time college student in San Francisco who supports herself by working in a restaurant. Their 23 year old daughter Merari is also a college student who lives at home and works part time in a warehouse. Elizabeth, their 27 year old daughter, also lives at home and works in the same cafeteria, at Cal State-San Bernardino, as her parents. Their 32 year old son Moises and 35 year old daughter Christy are married and live with their respective families.”

“But in 2010, at the height of the economic crisis, the Caamals’ dream started to become a nightmare. Both Mercedes and Pablo were laid off from their jobs at cooks at a local private college cafeteria. They quickly found new jobs and, like many Americans struggling to make ends meet during the economic hard times, applied for a loan modification with Wells Fargo. The bank immediately granted a temporary modification. The Caamals never missed a payment on their mortgage, but Wells Fargo nevertheless denied their request for a permanent modification and then began returning their payments.”

“This, too, is an experience that millions of Americans have faced, because Congress failed to require banks to participate in loan modifications (including a tool called ‘principal reduction’) as part of the 2010 Dodd-Frank bank reform law.”

“After Wells Fargo put the home up for sale at an auction, Wedgewood — which purchases and sells foreclosed properties around the country — bought the Caamals’ home last September for $284,000. After the Caamals and their supporters held a protest at Wedgewood’s headquarters, the company reluctantly agreed to hold off on eviction long enough for the family to secure financing for a loan to repurchase the home.”

“But Wedgewood reneged on its promise and demanded that the Caamals pay $375,000 for the home they are still living in. The Caamals say they are willing to pay that price — and have qualified for a mortgage to make the payments — but Wedgewood has refused their offer. ‘Why is Wedgewood evicting us, when we’re offering to give them a $100,000 profit on their investment?’ Mercedes Caamal said. ‘I don’t understand why they won’t accept our money.’”

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Comment by Ben Jones
2016-04-05 02:28:15

‘the Caamals pay $375,000 for the home they are still living in. The Caamals say they are willing to pay that price — and have qualified for a mortgage’

So two cafeteria workers with a recent foreclosure qualify for a $375,000 loan.

Comment by Ben Jones
2016-04-05 05:30:27

‘A recent report by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, a federal agency that regulates the nation’s banks, warns that declines in mortgage underwriting standards are mirroring pre-crisis trends.

‘Underwriting standards eased at a significant number of banks for the three-year period from 2013 through 2015,’ the report said. ‘This trend reflects broad trends similar to those experienced from 2005 through 2007, before the most recent financial crisis.’ Not since 2006, it noted, have lenders taken on so much credit risk, and it says the hazard will continue to grow this year: ‘Examiners expect the level of credit risk to increase over the next 12 months.’

‘A large chunk of the risk is coming from first-time home buyers with shaky credit and so-called ‘rebound’ buyers who previously defaulted on home loans. The demand from otherwise ­uncreditworthy home buyers ‘is driving home prices up faster than incomes and inflation,’ noted ­Edward Pinto, co-director of AEI’s International Center on Housing Risk in Washington.’

‘This is especially true in hot spots like California, where subprime-mortgage lenders offering interest-only loans with no FICO-score requirements are cropping up from the ashes of Countrywide Financial, the bankrupt subprime giant.’

‘In another sign housing is overheating, home ‘flipping’ is red hot again and hitting levels not seen since just prior to the mortgage meltdown. Nationwide, almost 180,000 homes were sold and then resold last year — the highest level since 2007. In fact, according to RealtyTrac, flipping in a dozen metro areas — including New York, Los Angeles, San Diego, Miami and Jacksonville, Fla. — exceeded peaks set in 2005.’

‘Like the last bubble, this one is fueled by artificial demand from government-induced lax lending standards and accommodative interest rates set by the Federal Reserve. Today’s relaxation in mortgage-underwriting standards is largely a function of government housing-policy changes at FHA, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which dominate the nation’s mortgage activity. As in the last easy-credit cycle, we are seeing ‘the promotion of policy to push firms to seek riskier products to promote growth,’ Wells Fargo Chief Economist John Silvia said.’

‘All three agencies have slashed down-payment and other requirements under pressure from Obama regulators, who include, most significantly, former Congressional Black Caucus leader and Obama appointee Mel Watt, head of the new Federal Housing Finance Agency, which now controls Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.’

‘Last year, Fannie Mae launched a new subprime-mortgage product called HomeReady that caters to recent immigrants with weak credit and limited income. The new loan program, which offers ‘income flexibility,’ allows borrowers for the first time to bundle income from roommates and relatives to meet qualifications for income. They only have to put 3% down, and can use gifts from nonprofit groups to subsidize their down payments.’

‘There is no limit on the number of non-borrower household members who can be present on a single transaction,’ Fannie advises originators. And even then there is ’documentation flexibility,’ a frightening echo of last decade’s ‘no-doc loans.’

‘You don’t have to show personal financial independence. You can be maxed out on credit cards and even live in government-subsidized housing. Just as long as you round up enough income-earners and pool ­finances to help meet a debt-to-income ratio of up to 50%. And you don’t need good credit. ‘If the borrower’s credit score is less than the minimum credit score required,’ Fannie tells loan underwriters, ‘the lender may develop an acceptable nontraditional credit profile’ that takes into consideration timely payments on electricity bills and car insurance — and even gym dues — in lieu of payments on credit cards and loans.’

‘Under HomeReady, you can even qualify for a ‘cash-out refinance’ of your mortgage, a type of loan that led to over-leveraging and a wave of defaults during the mortgage crisis.’

‘Why would Fannie offer the same kinds of poorly underwritten loans that forced it into bankruptcy? Because HomeReady aligns ‘with our housing goals’ set by Watt, it says in its Home­Ready literature. It’s all part of a government campaign to ease access to home loans for recent Hispanic immigrants — including those living here illegally. In fact, HomeReady caters to illegal immigrants by allowing borrowers to waive Social Security documentation.’

‘Watt, who as a congressman once demanded Freddie Mac back loans for welfare recipients in his North Carolina district, has instructed Fannie and Freddie to come up with ‘alternative credit-scoring models’ to FICO and approve more home buyers. ‘We have the pedal to the metal’ on adopting a new model, Watt said.’


Comment by Combotechie
2016-04-05 05:46:36

“The demand from otherwise ­uncreditworthy home buyers ‘is driving home prices up faster than incomes and inflation,’ noted ­Edward Pinto, co-director of AEI’s International Center on Housing Risk in Washington.”

Driving up home prices faster that incomes and inflation = Driving up wealth faster than incomes and inflation.

Is this a great world or what? I work a job in order to make money and my stay-at-home house works to make even more money.

Zillow says my wealth is increasing due to increasing equity AND Zillow says my income is increasing due to increasing rents that I do not have to pay.

The Zillow wealth is not exactly spendable unless I decide to do a David Lereah-type-equity-cash-out (but if just might be taxable) and the Zillow income is not at all spendable because it is imputed as hell - but nevertheless it counts toward the computation of GDP. Go figure.

All brought about by price increases, price increases as decided by strangers. Prices increase and - presto! - my wealth increases and also my income increases.


Comment by Combotechie
2016-04-05 06:24:20

“Prices increase and - presto! - my wealth increases and also my income increases.”

And just how hard is it to get prices of houses to increase in order to produce equity wealth and imputed income? It’s not hard at all. Consider:

1. The prices of all houses do not have to increase in order to create enormous amounts of wealth and income, only the prices of the houses that are sold have to increase in order to produce enormous amounts of wealth and income. If the prices of a few houses that are sold increase then - presto! - the values of the many, many comps also increase.

2. Prices do not have actually to be paid by the buyer, they only have to be promised to be paid by the buyer, contracted to be paid by the buyer. This situation allows the otherwise unpayable, the otherwise unaffordable to magically become affordable - affordable enough to keep the prices of all comparable houses up and rising (which also keeps enormous amounts of equity wealth and imputed rent up and rising).

Wealth; get prices to rise and - presto! - wealth will be instantly and magically created.

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Comment by rj chicago
2016-04-05 08:29:33

A true Wiley Coyote moment over a cliff with a sign saying “Help”.

Comment by oxide
2016-04-05 06:00:23

This is a one-sided HuffPo article. There are no details about the original purchase price or the terms of the original loan. No one attempted to talk to Wells Fargo. No one attempted to talk to Wedgewood.

Instead, HuffPo rattles off the Wedgewood CEO’s contributions to Mitt Romney, and blames Congress for “failing to require banks to participate in loan modifications (including a tool called “principal reduction”).”

Comment by Ben Jones
2016-04-05 06:04:30

‘This column is cross-posted on the Huffington Post.’

‘Peter Dreier is the E.P. Clapp Distinguished Professor of Politics and chair of the Urban & Environmental Policy Department at Occidental College. His most recent book is The 100 Greatest Americans of the 20th Century: A Social Justice Hall of Fame (2012).’

Comment by Shekels
2016-04-05 06:19:30

Social Justice Hall of Fame

Cloward-Piven is real.

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Comment by Eddie89
2016-04-06 09:52:58

They probably used one of those fancy mortgage programs where you can include the income of friends and family!

Hey, there’s a good name for one of those mortgages! “The Friends and Family” mortgage! LOL!

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
Comment by rms
2016-04-05 06:10:57

That’s a good read… lots of pivotal decisions.

Comment by Oddfellow
2016-04-05 07:18:49

” In the 1950’s when 87% of men participated in the labor market, the country’s economy grew strongly, we produced rather than consumed, we saved before we spent, the family unit was strong, and men’s purpose in life was clear.”

What was man’s clear purpose in life back then? Work, reproduce, fight bankers’ wars, go bowling at night, and no commie talk.

Of course, we got paid well for it. The pay dried up, but they still seem to want our support. (”They” being the few.)

Comment by cactus
Comment by oxide
2016-04-05 10:47:09

At least in my section of government, the boomers have been “hanging on for another 2-3 years” for the past 4-6 years. Five years ago, they were subsidizing their 30-year old kids. Now, they are subsidizing their newborn and toddler grandkids. These folks aren’t going to retire until some health problem takes them out. I call it the Death March.

Comment by tresho
2016-04-07 10:54:16

These folks aren’t going to retire until some health problem takes them out. I call it the Death March.
That was the way most previous generations lived & died, except for the few wealthy and well-connected.

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Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2016-04-05 02:45:10

Russia and Turkey (a NATO member) backing opposing sides in Nagorno-Karabakh. What could possibly go wrong?


Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2016-04-05 02:48:12

Are the functional retards who comprise 95% of the ‘Murican electorate finally beginning to rebel against the oligarchs and globalists? I’ll believe it when I see it.


Comment by Shekels
2016-04-05 05:43:57

World Net Daily?

That’s a neocon website. Yes they run Patrick Buchanan’s columns, but they are undeniably neocon in every other way.

Comment by The Central Scrutinizer
2016-04-05 08:34:21


Comment by palmetto
2016-04-05 06:13:48

“functional retards who comprise 95% of the ‘Murican electorate”

WHAT electorate? Please, tell me, WHAT electorate? Because this particular “election” is laying bare the fact that there ain’t no such thing. Rather, there is a “selectorate”. Deal with it. Stop blaming some non-existent group of “95% functional retards” for your unhappiness. Because as it turns out, they don’t elect diddly.

BUT, the neat trick is, you and others are convinced that they do. And that provides a convenient scapegoat/

What’s even neater, is that the false “electorate” meme provides a manufactured consent to be governed by people that weren’t elected. There’s a mind-bender. Looks like we haven’t really had an election since Reagan, maybe even before. Can’t use the “you elected them” excuse anymore. Ain’t that a b*tch.

Comment by Oddfellow
2016-04-05 06:27:05

Rather, there is a “selectorate”.

That’s one of the things that makes us a republic as opposed to a pure democracy, right?

Comment by palmetto
2016-04-05 06:41:02

Except we’re missing that one little word: “representative”.

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Comment by Oddfellow
2016-04-05 06:54:50


Don’t we elect representatives? That’s where the “pure democracy” is. The rest is meant to be (small r) republican. Meaning our elected representatives take it from there.

Comment by palmetto
2016-04-05 08:16:22

“Don’t we elect representatives?”

I dunno, do we?

Comment by Oddfellow
2016-04-05 08:42:52

I dunno, do we?

Yes, we do. Although most of them have been selected, too. But yes, at the level of representative (and state senator), we are democratically electing them. Senators at the federal level, of course, were originally selected by state legislatures.

The Constitution, especially prior to some amending, was all about “selections” over popular elections. The Founding Fathers were rather fearful of direct democracy. Of course, they were the wealthy few, for the most part.

Comment by Blue Skye
2016-04-05 06:29:53

How do you feel about Congressional elections? The Creatures they select for President generally come from there.

Comment by palmetto
2016-04-05 06:44:26

From Congress? I haven’t done the math, but state governors have provided a good number of selectees.

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Comment by palmetto
2016-04-05 06:47:30

And how much of Congress is really “elected” by constituents in the districts? I don’t know the answer to that, but I suspect many Congresscritters are “selected” as well, although David Brat knocking out Cantor would indicate perhaps people have more say in Congressional elections. But again, it has to do with the choices they’re given.

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Comment by Oddfellow
2016-04-05 07:07:04

t I suspect many Congresscritters are “selected” as well,

This “selection’ you speak of, isn’t it just another way of saying moneyed interests confer with one another to use their wealth to select candidates they desire?

Comment by palmetto
2016-04-05 08:17:54

Yes. Although apparently not in all cases.

My congressional rep is one of the selected. David Brat would appear to be one of the elected.

Comment by Blue Skye
2016-04-05 09:26:28

When Hillary ran for the Senate in NY, the bankers gave her a budget 100 times the normal NY race expenses, $10mil vs $100K.

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2016-04-05 02:51:48

After two bailouts and hundreds of billions of dollars, Greece is still un-fixed. Cue new Eurozone crisis in 3-2-1, and this time bankster errand girl Frau Merkel may face serious domestic resistance if she tries to put German taxpayers on the hook for yet another bailout of the banks who foolishly lent money to the corrupt Greek deadbeats.


Comment by taxpayers
2016-04-05 04:13:29

Only gov workers can retire

Comment by redmondjp
2016-04-05 10:11:26

Maybe at the local level. Fed workers have a Thrift Savings Program (TSP) which is a 401K by another name. Pensions are a thing of the past.

The way to work the system is to get a military retirement after 20 years of service, work another 20-25 in government, gaining a second retirement, and then doing contracting/consulting work after that. Those people are set, but still working into their 60 or 70s.

Local workers (e.g. fire, police) can still retire in their early 50s.

So not all government workers are equal!

Comment by oxide
2016-04-05 12:23:17

Feds still get a pension. It’s something like 1% x years service x max 3. So at best, even a 30-year career bureaucrat who makes it to the top GS-15 gets a whopping $30-35K pension.

Feds pay into and get SS. They can also contribute to a TSP, which is nearly the same as private sector. No matter when you retire, the pension doesn’t start until you’re 62. So yes, Feds can retire, but not as kings.

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Comment by Jake
2016-04-05 13:32:04

Hey Donk.

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2016-04-05 02:54:07

The oligarchs and their captured political puppets do not like having their finances and tax evasion exposed to the light of day.


Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2016-04-05 02:56:24

Have Dutch voters finally had enough of kow-towing to their unaccountable EU overlords in Brussels?


Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2016-04-05 02:57:43

Yellon the Felon: witless tool of the Deep State.


Comment by Raymond K Hessel
Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2016-04-05 03:04:19

Our captured regulators are too “exhausted” to reel in the TBTB banks. That’s the MSM’s story and they’re sticking to it. Ready for more bankster bailouts, sheeple?


Comment by Combotechie
2016-04-05 05:24:16
Comment by Oddfellow
2016-04-05 05:38:59

“Millionaires are leaving Chicago”

And guess where they’re moving?

“Cities in the United States that saw a net inflow of millionaires included Seattle and San Francisco.”

Comment by Ben Jones
2016-04-05 05:52:59

‘China’s Foreign Ministry on Tuesday denounced as “groundless” reports based on documents leaked from a Panama-based law firm that name relatives of current and retired Chinese politicians, including President Xi Jinping, as owning offshore companies.’

‘State media are ignoring reports on the revelations. Search results of websites and social media for the words “Panama documents” were blocked Tuesday.’

‘A lack of legal guarantees in China has motivated many of the country’s newly wealthy to hide their riches through complicated legal arrangements that place them beyond the reach of the authorities.’

‘The ICIJ said Mossack Fonseca had arranged offshore companies for relatives of at least eight present or past members of the Communist Party’s Politburo Standing Committee, the apex of power in China. Among those it mentioned was Xi’s brother-in-law.’

‘Previous reports by Bloomberg News and the New York Times about wealth accumulated by Xi’s family and the even-greater fortune built up by relatives of former Premier Wen Jiabao prompted China to block access to their websites within China and refuse to grant visas to their reporters to work in China.’


Comment by Oddfellow
2016-04-05 06:04:10

Can a republic survive great concentrations of wealth in the hands of the few, who seem to be able to use this wealth to circumvent the republic’s laws, or rewrite them in their favor?

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Comment by Jake
2016-04-05 06:28:20

Lola…. Thats what happens when “the hands of a few” are allowed to bottleneck markets and rig prices.

You’ve got a problem.

Comment by Blue Skye
2016-04-05 06:33:56

Where is the outrage for the hands of lawmakers full of payola?

Comment by Oddfellow
2016-04-05 06:36:32

when “the hands of a few” are allowed to bottleneck markets and rig prices.

Isn’t that what happens when too much wealth has ended up in the hands of the few? They come to control everything?

Comment by Oddfellow
2016-04-05 06:39:20

the hands of lawmakers full of payola?

Where does that payola come from? The immensely wealthy few?

Comment by Jake
2016-04-05 06:41:55

Lola you can gyrate all day long which came first.

Prices my friend.

Comment by palmetto
2016-04-05 06:59:00

Google Eric Holder. Payola can occur in a number of different ways, many perfectly legal, unfortunately.

Comment by Oddfellow
2016-04-05 07:21:22

Google Eric Holder

His future money doesn’t come from the immensely wealthy few, who use their wealth to be above the law?

Comment by oxide
2016-04-05 07:25:08

Where is the outrage for the hands of lawmakers full of payola?

They got thrown out of Zucotti Park, remember?

Comment by Blue Skye
2016-04-05 07:27:02

Prostitutes will work for what ever wages they can get.

Comment by The Central Scrutinizer
2016-04-05 23:23:19

“They got thrown out of Zucotti Park, remember?”

Only FAOM protests are legit.

Comment by Prime_Is_Contained
2016-04-05 23:31:17

Only FAOM protests are legit.

Only protestors supported by billionaires or aligned with one of the duopoly parties are legit.

Comment by rj chicago
2016-04-05 08:32:57

Come for a visit here in the winter to witness the witless utopia that is Chicago and you will understand why these folks are leaving.
It IS because they can and are tired of the crap hole this place has become.

Comment by Ben Jones
2016-04-05 05:55:21

‘It takes an average of 2.7 years to complete a foreclosure in New York State…and it astounds and frustrates observers, particularly when home buyers are scouring the marketplace for deals’

Comment by Blue Skye
2016-04-05 06:35:29

As we’ve discussed before, it can be the greater part of a decade before a foreclosure is even started on a defaulted mortgage in NY.

Comment by Shekels
2016-04-05 06:16:58

Sorry Realtors, but there is no “pent-up demand” for $500,000 starter homes happening here:


Comment by Jake
2016-04-05 06:30:07

realtors are liars

Comment by Shekels
Comment by Shekels
2016-04-05 06:32:14

Rent Jeffrey Dahmer’s boyhood home for $10,000 a month during the GOP convention:


Comment by palmetto
2016-04-05 07:42:37

OK, to answer the question that heads up this post, why does it take so long?

It’s all about the fees. Mr. Banker can explain it.

Comment by Mr. Banker
2016-04-05 07:54:06

For a fee I will be happy to.

Comment by Oddfellow
2016-04-05 08:09:04

Who do you work for, Mr. Banker?

I’m betting it’s not the proletariat.

I’m betting it’s the immensely wealthy few. Who use their immense wealth to run our selections, vampire squid the many, and burst through the cobwebs of the republic’s laws.

Comment by Mr. Banker
2016-04-05 08:26:00

Who do any of us work for? We work for ourselves. Others are but vehicles each of us use to get whatever it is that we want.

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Comment by Oddfellow
2016-04-05 08:47:00

Others are but vehicles each of us use to get whatever it is that we want.

Yes, yes, shield your employers, the wealthy few, at all costs.

That’s in the job description, right?

Comment by Jake
2016-04-05 13:01:50

Your envy is showing again Lola.

Comment by rj chicago
2016-04-05 08:35:40

Remember - Don’t go to Mr. Banker’s parties - he don’t pay for the goodies - it is BYOB in his house.

Comment by Mr. Banker
2016-04-05 08:55:31

Not my house, my money-making operations.

My parties are set up to lure and match-up groups of people with money with groups of people who want to latch onto the groups of people with money.

Each group of people hopes to get what they want from the other group of people, and while each group of people are trying to get what they want from the other group of people I am hoping to end up getting what I want.

This set up requires food and booze and if properly executed the groups of people themselves will end up supplying both the food and the booze.

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Comment by Oddfellow
2016-04-05 07:52:44

We’re not full, we’ve still got storage space in the pipes that connect the full tanks.

Oil glut up close: How Cushing copes with full crude tanks
By Jessica Resnick-Ault,Reuters 9 hours ago

On March 24, the day after U.S. government data showed Cushing’s tanks held a near-record 66.23 million barrels of crude, Mike Moeller, manager at Enbridge, explained how the largest Cushing operator uses every last inch of usable space.

Operators and technicians make it possible by moving a half-million barrels per day in internal pipelines that link the major pipelines and tanks of its 20 million barrel terminal.


Comment by Professor Bear
2016-04-05 08:33:42

Speaking of taking a long time, how long from now will oil bottom out?

Markets | Tue Apr 5, 2016 8:46am EDT
Oil near one-month low on unexpected U.S. demand drop
LONDON | By Karolin Schaps
A worker grabs a nozzle at a petrol station in Tehran, Iran January 25, 2016.
Reuters/Raheb Homavandi/TIMA

Oil traded near one-month lows on Tuesday after a surprise fall in gasoline demand in the United States, the world’s largest oil consumer, and on doubts whether oil producers can agree an output freeze to dampen a global supply glut.

U.S. gasoline demand, one of the strongest pillars supporting oil consumption, fell in January for the first time in 14 months, U.S. Energy Information Administration data showed.

The world’s largest oil producers are due to meet in Doha on April 17 to negotiate an output freeze, but a jump in Russian oil production to a 30-year high in March has cast doubt over the chances of an output cap being agreed.

Iran, meanwhile, continues to ramp up oil exports and has said it will not join fellow OPEC and non-OPEC members in a production freeze. Those sentiments were reinforced on Tuesday when Deputy Oil Minister Marzieh Shahdaei said that she had no plans to attend the Doha meeting.

Brent crude, the global oil price benchmark, was down 27 cents at $37.42 a barrel at 1238 GMT, close to a one-month low. U.S. futures fell by 28 cents to $35.42.

The market was surprised by two figures: Russian production at a 30-year high and U.S. gasoline demand dropping for the first time in 14 months,” said Frank Klumpp, oil analyst at Stuttgart-based Landesbank Baden-Wuerttemberg.

As long as most speculative money is long-positioned, there is more room for closing positions and falling prices.”

Comment by Professor Bear
2016-04-05 12:44:38

MarketsCommodities, oil groups, miners wallow in the red
10 hours ago

Oil prices are falling for the third consecutive day, slipping to a month low as fears surrounding oversupply remain entrenched in the market.

Brent has dropped as much as 1.1 per cent this morning to a month low of $37.27, 12.4 per cent below its March peak.

Meanwhile WTI, the US benchmark, has slipped as much as 1.3 per cent to $35.24, also a month low.

Oil prices have been hit by the first drop in US gasoline demand in 14 months in January, according to data from the US Energy Information Administration, as well as a jump in Russian oil production, which hit a 30-year high in March.

The world’s largest oil producers will meet later this month to try and agree a freeze in oil production, but the rise in Russian output, along with comments from Saudi Arabia’s deputy crown prince on Friday, have cast doubt over the chances of a deal being reached.

Other commodity prices are also sliding, with zinc down 1.4 per cent and nickel off 0.4 per cent, moves that have coincided with a rebound for the US dollar. The greenback’s retreat last week had given commodity prices a boost, but the Dollar Index is up 0.1 per cent this morning.

Comment by Shekels
2016-04-05 08:47:51

NAR tearjerker puff piece frames becoming a debt donkey as some kind of accomplishment:


All this just for a depreciating, rotting shack in North Philadelphia.

Comment by Jake
2016-04-05 09:09:36

Poor donks. Poor poor donks.

Comment by rj chicago
2016-04-05 08:47:58

Ben et al….
More on Panama papers.

I have to admit that for a long while I had been looking at Panama as a potential place to retire and now - not so much. That place is just another example of banana republic banking!!!


Comment by rj chicago
2016-04-05 09:06:35

As has been said on this site many times - look out for a scorned woman - the ending is not pretty……


Panama insiders have said that the source of the information was not, as Mossack is reporting, an intrusion by hackers, but an inside job. A former female employee, with access to the data, was allegedly involved in an intimate relationship with a Mossack name partner. The relationship ended badly some time ago, and the employee exacted her revenge by going public with Mossack client lists and related data.

From this…..


Comment by rj chicago
2016-04-05 09:12:04

Wonder if this guy is squirming at the behest of said scorned woman in Panama?


Comment by cactus
2016-04-05 10:30:16


Home prices in those cities are at least half of those in San Francisco, with median values at $351,700 in Portland, $536,700 in Seattle and $569,500 in Los Angeles, Zillow data show.

A software engineer in Austin earning $110,000 would need to make $195,000 in San Francisco to maintain the same quality of life, according to a Hired report. Tech workers’ annual salaries average $118,243 in San Francisco and Silicon Valley, according to data from Dice.com, a technology-jobs website based in San Jose.

“A lot of companies are opening shops outside of the Bay Area because of the candidate shortage for the skill set that they need,” said Megan Slabinski, a Seattle-based district president managing Northern California, Washington and Oregon at Robert Half Technology, a tech-staffing firm. “Looking at Seattle and Portland, you’ve got large tech hubs of candidates. There’s a great pool of talent.”

Comment by Jake
2016-04-05 16:22:04

Remember….. Nothing accelerates the economy and creates jobs like falling prices to dramatically lower and more affordable levels. Nothing.

Sarasota, FL Housing Prices Crater 16% YoY


Comment by Eddie89
2016-04-06 10:36:30

‘I don’t understand why they won’t accept our money.’

It’s because they’re greedy bastards and they want 2x or 3x the amount.

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