Continuing to examine and hold a lively discussion of the Northern Virginia Real Estate market.
Please post your local house search updates, MLS finds, on-topic ideas, and links here.
Yahoo Finance interviews Professor Shiller (broadband required).Hope I did that right.
i love this listing.http://franklymls.com/AR6982315i wait for the further price increases. 22201 old refurbished condo market is immune to price drops and we can expect a steady 100% a year price appreciation in this area.
So the SF Chronicle has an article today saying most of the Bay Area cannot qualify for Obama's mortgage relief, and it cites a 117 city Zillow report that listed the SF area last.Try as I might, I cannot find a copy of that list to see where the DC area fell in terms of who may be helped, and who will not. Anybody better at research than me able to come up with that list?
Looks like the first placed I lived in when I moved to DC in 2003 has sold.http://franklymls.com/AR6860173 All those upgrades were done after I moved out.I used to pay $1000 a month in rent there and remember an appraiser coming through one day. He said they would most likely value it around $225,000. That was in 2004. I guess the owner made some money on the place.
RJ, those upgrades probably cost them well over $60K. Their original basis is $122500 from 2001 (per Arlington, value is down $39K from peak). So with the commissions and other expenses of selling, looks as if they made a little, though I'll bet they didn't make a killing, even if they got list price.
Arlington County Manager Proposes Smaller Budget for FY 2010$23.3 million in reductions proposedARLINGTON, Va. -- County Manager Ron Carlee proposed a $929.5 million fiscal year (FY) 2010 budget at the February 21, 2009 County Board meeting, a decrease of almost $12 million (1.3 percent) below the FY 2009 revised budget. Arlington’s real estate values bucked area and national trends by increasing 0.4% for calendar year 2009, but not enough to offset rising costs, the economic downturn, and unprecedented budget cuts from the Commonwealth of Virginia. Total County spending is down 2.4%, excluding schools. The Schools transfer of $352.4 million is up $2.3 million, an increase of 0.65%.
Experts Predict A Dim Future Across the Board for Washington Areahttp://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/02/22/AR2009022201474.html?hpid=topnews
From yesterday's thread:Why is it that almost 90% of all mortgages are currently "healthy", yet banks are being compelled to write down alot of these securities to 10 and 20 cents on the dollarSimple answer: LEVERAGE!!Let's say I'm a tiny bank.I have an mortgage backed investment with only TWO mortgages in it.I paid out a million dollars for the two of them combined. (500K each.)Both are paying 6%.Now, one of them is still paying 6%. That's $2500 a month income.But the other one just defaulted. So, I'm not getting any income from that one--a 50% hair cut. If I take the house, it's now maybe worth $300,000, so I'm up $2500 next month but out $200,000. **IF** I can sell the house.If I CAN'T sell the house, I have a house that's falling in value, upkeep costs and headache, probably tax costs, possible liabilities if some idiot gets hurt on the property, etc.Do I sound solvent to you? Do I sound like I can loan money to another buyer, or to another bank in the same situation.Does it sound like a sound business model for staying in business?So I ask the government for money. But the republicans are crying "socialism!" and the democrats are crying "bailouts for rich bankers with bonuses!" and the common shareholders in my bank are crying "nationalization will screw us!"Now let's say you are the government, responsible for sensible use of taxpayer money. Or you are a private equity investor responsible for your money, or your corporation's, or your company's future retirees pensions.You come to my bank and say, "I want to buy that mortgage-backed investment off of you to help you out and a little money, commensurate with the risk. You ask:"What's it paying in total return?"LOL!!!!!!! What must my answer be???Does it sound like you'll want to pay a NICE price for this investment--especially given the likely climate looking forward?So the government and private equity are playing hardball.The ONLY good news is that treasury yields, U.S. stocks, and, lately, most commodities have had a total return that's less that these types of investments.If the stock market gets going, or bond yields back up, or inflation gets going again, but jobs and home prices don't--these investments could be REALLY screwed.
"The idea of cutting Metro services or increasing fares -- at a time when the area should be focusing on how to bring more people onto public transportation, not fewer -- is appalling and depressing. My husband and I spent a lot of money buying a house that is close to a Metro stop, with the expectation that Metro's vitality and usability would continue to flourish."They should have bought a cave house...
tiredbubblewatcher,The one you quoted seems like a perfect example of what my husband keeps saying, that people around here seem to have too much of their self-worth tied up in their house prices. And we don't mean financial worth either, although that appears to be true of the country as a whole. But actually, I'm impressed that only one person brought that up. On the other hand, these were selected responses, so presumably they intentionally picked one with that sentiment.
Homeowners in Arlington don't have to worry much about potential Metrorail cutbacks, which will affect mainly Yellow and Green line stations, and the outer stations. Arlington is so close-in that it will continue to enjoy Metrorail service.
TomClose in? Nah. The real point is that the Orange line is so crowded, there would be a riot if they cut service on it. That aside, I agree, they won't be cutting back Orange line service, it's way too heavily used for that.
This is way off-topic...but have any of you used the Metro to commute over a long period of time (10 years or so)? I briefly commuted via metro around 2000 and I thought the service was pretty decent. My wife uses it daily now and the delays seem to have gotten MUCH more frequent. Has the metro administration changed significantly or something? It seems like reliability and customer service has really plummeted over the last 5 years or so.
You're right, Cara. Of course, being close-in, many people in Arlington have multiple transportation alternatives to Metrorail also (bus, bicycle, walking). I cycle to work (Foggy Bottom) when the weather's nice and I could walk if I had to, which is what I did on 9/11.
5:01: NPR All Things Considered will have a story in the current segment on foreclosures in Manassas.
NPR's Robert Siegel reporting that Manassas RE looks like "the bottom."2005: 2 foreclosures2008: 922Out of 10,000 houses total -- more than 10 percent!Manassas is at the outer edge of the DC region. A place where lots of Hispanic construction workers could buy a TH. Prices for THs rose from low 200s to low 300s. It was "Bubble Town USA." Now, 92 percent of all RE sales last year were bank sales. Visited working class neighborhood of 40-year old THs called Georgetown South. Many foreclosures. One sold last week for 43,000 dollars. TH on Taney Road: 2 stories, 3 BR; mid-60s for a price. Sold for 265K in 2006! Owning one of these THs now is cheaper than renting, so buyers are really coming out, many paying in cash. With new buyers flocking in, does this mean the bottom has been reached? Maybe, maybe not. How do you price THs in a place where most sales are bank sales? One result is the city, which has laid off scores of employees as tax revenues have dried up, isn't doing many assessments anymore.
tom's summary is pretty accurate except for the last sentence. I took their report to mean that they would not be assessing properties down to the REO sales prices. Tom's sentence is reading into what they said about revenue issues and assessors not knowing how to assess properties if all the transactions are "abnormal". Not that his is necessary untrue or invalid, it's just not a direct statement from NPR.and a link to the story on NPR.orgManassas sees price support at $40k?audio will be available at 7PM EST
Contrarian,Zillow data is not accurate and should not be taken seriously. Yes prices have gone down but there data is all over the map, pun intended.
I meant "their" data
i was on the way back from a dr. apt. in fairfax when i heard that npr segment on manassas--a little thrill to hear my town on the air that way. i was most impresssed by the 92% of sales involving banks this past year, and the 10% of all housing units having gone through foreclosure.cara, thanks for pointing out tom's error. the city assessor was making the point that they used to not count foreclosures when making assessments, but now, since virtually all sales are foreclosures, they have no choice--but they will not assess properties as low as they are selling right now, because to do so would be to bankrupt the city.exciting news today: i called the PWC assessor's office, and 2009 tax assessments should be online next Friday. not too much longer to wait!
Sorry about the NPR error -- I was typing as I was listening, and then the phone rang, so I got distracted!
I grew up in Manassas (cit) and my parents still live there. Their neighborhood was taken over by immigrants in the past few years. For decades it was a solid middle class nabe-cops, teachers, low-level GS workers with long commutes, etc. In about 2-3 years, it became pretty much unrecognizable. Seriously, there was this guy with a stolen Target shopping cart walking up and down the streets selling burritos and blaring music from a boombox. I kid you not!Now their neighborhood is like a freakin' ghost town and so many of the houses are junked--it is really depressing, actually. (Tabitha-they are over by Weems E.S. since you know the area).Also, the Georgetown South neighborhood in no way can realistically be described as "working class". That is a crime-ridden neighborhood populated by the non-working class, and has been for decades.
The fairfax county 2009 assessments are on the website
Meshell said: "Their neighborhood was taken over by immigrants in the past few years."Meshell, I do sympathize. I presume you mean "illegal aliens," right?
Well, I didn't quiz the Burrito Cart Man about his INS status when he walked by blaring his mariachi music, but there were many houses with multiple families. I honestly don't know if they were legal/illegal-they were just very close-knit I suppose!Also, I went to the local park with my daughter and this woman tried to steal our stroller and then pretended like she didn't speak English when I said: "Excuse me, you are walking away with my stroller!" She didn't even have any children with her! The neighborhood just became...bizarre.
tom,it was an impressive transcipt actually, we're just making a clarification.
tom, i was very impressed by your transcript abilities, as well! i was fumbling around the dash for a pen myself in the hov lane, and by the time i got my eyes back on the road, i got to watch someone right behind me get pulled over for a hov violation, which erased all the information i had just heard from my brain. so i was very grateful someone else had gotten everything down.
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