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.
Mortgage delinquencies pass 10%housing wireUnemployment over 10%, delinquencies over 10% such symmetry.The silver lining is that the 2009 vintage appears to be performing better. Funny how when you tighten underwriting standards and increase affordability with both lower prices and lower rates you get better performing loans.
Cara-Its a shame that they didn't actual show a graph of the performance of each vintage. I don't trust journalists without seeing their data. I assume they are correct that 2009 vintage is performing better, but I have seen journalists that would just see that fewer people are delinquent in the 2009 vintage compared to previous vintages and say the loans are performing better. When in fact it is just the fact that it takes time to become delinquent...
housebuyer,Housing Wire usually knows what it's doing, but I agree, I'd like to see that graph with the vintages and delinquencies as a function of months since origination.
So the economic "recovery" is really just politicians hiding the real numbers so they can lie about how many stimulus jobs they've created by spending our future taxes.Poof: Another 800,000 jobs disappear
An update: Since I'd posted about it here before. We finally closed on my grandfather's old place. Had to delay settlement three times due to financing issues for the buyer. Total time on market: about 9 months. What an ordeal.
Congrats Xpovos!!!!What a relief.
Jeremy,Interesting find. Like all economic data revisions continue for years after the fact. Accurate demographics is difficult. But it sounds as if they really missed the ball with not changing the parameter value assigned to their birth/death model.
Cara& Jeremy-I agree that should be embarrassing on their part that they were claiming more businesses were being made than closed during the recession. Jeremy-I think most politicians will admit that they have not done much on the job front. That the economic recovery is based on GDP growth and fewer job losses. They are hoping that after another 6-12 months of stabilization companies will add jobs. Obama's jobs created/saved was always a bit of a joke because it is impossible to estimate how many jobs were saved. I think we will start adding jobs over the next couple of months and by 2H 2010 we should be adding jobs as fast as people are entering the work force. Unfortunately this just means the unemployment rate will stop going up. It will likely take 3-4 years at least to get it down to something more reasonable like 6-7%
Nobody is going to be adding jobs except the Federal government, and Wall Street since they are the only ones who can print money or borrow it for free. I think 10-12% unemployment is here to stay for at least a decade, or possibly permanently. Its the 'new norm'.
Doug,If it's the new norm, eventually people will just leave the workforce and stop getting counted in the unemployment percentage. In fact, that's already happening, it would just become permanent.
Cara-I agree I think we would just go back to having a lot more SAHMs if jobs never returned. They would then leave the work force bringing unemployment down. I think this may happen marginally, but I think jobs will return. The consumer is delevering at a pretty quick rate. Paying off debts will allow more disposable income. I also think at some point people will stop delevering, which will create additional disposible income. This will be a couple of years in the future and is where I see job growth coming from.
Not to derail from housing, but I don't think anyone in the region will be house-shopping this weekend. They're saying 16-24 inches. Yikes!Everybody have your snow shovels ready?
kevin,Yup, this weekend and last weekend will seriously drop the number of contracts made.A neighbor snow-blowed all the driveways and around all the cars on our street. We don't know where he lives to even bring him cookies as thanks....housebuyer,I hope you're right on the turn-around, because I think the situation is actually a lot grimmer than families choosing to have one parent at home. Given the job losses have dispropriationately hit men, and the percentage of children raised by single parents, I think a drop in work force participation would end up being demographically more dire, think 50-somethings without jobs too young for social security and medicare, young people never showing up in unemployment compensation statistics because they never landed a job in the first place.
Housebuyer,Unfortunately I think we are facing more of a "mancession".Women have no problem sitting in a chair and performing desk jobs. Women are also outnumbering men in graduating from college.Jobs requiring physical strength and bulk are on the wane at present. I don't think this recession in particular will create more SAHMs. The government (well, the President) recently touted incentives to working women in the latest grasping at economic straws (doubling tax credits for daycare). I rarely hear kudos to SAHMs from the ruling classes who make policy. SAHMs are the invisible class.I'm not sure that disappearing jobs are going to leave more spots for men, but we shall see. I know several men who are laid off at present, and they are married to SAHMs. I haven't come across nearly as many women who are laid off. (In fact, I don't know of any).And now, back to housing. Sorry if I opened a can of worms. It's distressing for me personally to know men who are laid off and families who are struggling.
Cara-The situation you are depicting is definitely what is happening now. I was just saying that if unemployment truly stays at very elevated levels for the next decade that I think this would shift. Part of the reason that man have been hit so hard is that construction has been hit very hard, do too all over the overbuilding. Although these jobs may be gone for several years at some point you need they will come back as the lack of investment makes future opportunities. So as I said I don't think we will be at 10% unemployment indefinitely, but if we are at those levels I think the economy will adapt to a work environment with more stay at home parents. I guess I said moms, but is it so much worse if it is a stay at home dad?
housebuyer,It doesn't matter to me which parent stays home. But kids are only kids for 18 years, assuming most families span less than 10 years in age, that's a maximum of 28 years. That's only a little more than half someone's working lifetime. So, SAHM or SAHD becomes stay-at-home spouse. Which is also not the end of the world, but I just think given the divorce rates as a function of income levels... that it's not going to be so pretty.
Harriet-I agree that men are taking the brunt of the recession, I was just trying to say that if jobs don't come back during the decade that the mix of men/women working would change. I don't think anyone here thinks the same people that are unemployed now will be unemployed for the next decade. So I was just speculating that the mix of unemployed would change even if the total level of unemployed stays flat.
finally got to see the 'dream home on paper' in person and met the termites that live(d) there.... sign. sometimes being a renter is not all that bad.
MM- Bummer. It is always a shame when a house looks so good until you get there.
Kevin-Yeah I need to get groceries tonight, why do I have a feeling I am not going to be able to find any milk at the store. I always laugh when I see people getting 3 or 4 gallons of milk because the snow will trap them in their house for what 2-3 days?
I was pleasantly surprised by the amount of milk eggs and bread that were available on Tuesday. It might not be so easy tonight though.The problem is not, not being able to get out, the problem is bread and milk deliviries not being able to get in. That does happen.
FYI...I'm an editor with Washingtonian Magazine. For an upcoming article I'm looking for people who have good stories about buying or selling (or trying to buy or sell) homes in the Washington area in the last 10 years.Did you get caught up in a bidding war, feel you were priced out of the market, or make a killing selling your house during the hot market? Or maybe you ran into trouble with an ARM, bought a foreclosure at a steep discount, or saw your neighborhood change rapidly.If you have a good story to share, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.Thanks!Denise Kersten WillsFeatures EditorWashingtonian Magazine
housebuyer,we went without an agent and didn't know what it was until the listing agent saw it and was surprised by it herself as well. we literally ran out of the house immediately.but other than that, it's almost every bit of what i thought it'd be, and actually a tad better (wouldda bid higher otherwise).
"I was pleasantly surprised by the amount of milk eggs and bread that were available on Tuesday. It might not be so easy tonight though."People are just completely nuts...A couple feet of snow is a good snowfall for almost anywhere, but it just means you need to stay off the road for a day or two. People act like it is nuclear fallout or something.I hate to think what it would be like if we were ever exposed to some real hardship.
Leroy,You've never been through a storm where they couldn't bring in fresh milk eggs or bread for a week thereafter? New Jersey 1996 I think? There was seriously this gigantic run on Parmalot.So far the crowds here have mostly been because everyone who was planning on doing their groceries within the next 3 days got all smushed into going on the same day.
I wasn't picking on you in Cara, just in case you thought I was.I have been through some pretty impressive snowstorms. I used to live up in the snowbelt, the difference there was that nobody really got all that excited about it when it snowed. There would be a pick-up in shopping if a really large storm was expected but it wasn't anything like what I have seen in Northern VA. My point was that most Americans have no concept of what a real emergency is like. My travels take me off the tourist circuit a fair bit, some of the time to places where no milk or egg deliveries for a week at a time may not require any explanation at all.
Leroy,but what's wrong with a little bit of stock in your fridge? Large quantities of milk seem funny, but some non-perishables are ok.Some of my relatives actually survived hunger only because they had a lot of canned food in their house, and in their later years it was very difficult to convince them, that having a lot of spam in the store does not make much sense.
Konstantin- The problem with getting a lot of milk/bread... Is that stores can't get shipments in quickly enough so grocery stores often run out around snow storms. So if you need one gallon of milk to last the 2 day snow storm, but you buy 3 gallons than some other family doesn't get any milk and there kids cry because they can't eat their lucky charms :-p
Large families can easily go through three gallons of milk in a week. I agree that even a family of 5-7 probably will not need three gallons for the weekend but since they are already at the grocery store they figure why not get a week's worth of milk.The snowstorms always remind me of how nice it is to have a grocery store in walking distance. There are a lot of SFH in cul de sacs in Fairfax County in a 20-25 minute walk to a grocery store. Not as convenient as my current jaunt in Arlington but good enough for emergencies.That's one minus of the beautiful and scenic houses in the Oakton or Clifton area. Many are not walkable to a shopping center with a grocery store and those scenic roads are not ones I'd like to drive on in snowy conditions.
"but what's wrong with a little bit of stock in your fridge? Large quantities of milk seem funny, but some non-perishables are ok.Some of my relatives actually survived hunger only because they had a lot of canned food in their house, and in their later years it was very difficult to convince them, that having a lot of spam in the store does not make much sense."Oh I am all for having some food on hand. That was actually part of my point. Most Americans simply don't prepare, then when even the slightest disruption to their daily routine comes along they think they are facing a major disaster.You could fill a couple large boxes with food that would feed a family for weeks if it had to. Canned meat and vegetables, dried beans and rice, powdered milk, oatmeal, and couple bottles of decent scotch. (What is the point of being prepared if you aren't going to be well prepared?)Considering you could buy everything on my list for a couple hundred dollars, why not? You can even eat from your stock provided you are conscientious enough to keep track of what you take out and replace it regularly.My point isn't to advocate becoming a survivalist, but rather that it really takes very little money and effort to be prepared. You can look on the internet for pre-made lists of what you might buy in advance for your family size.(Obviously in addition to food you might want a first-aid kid, a gun, a radio, water, water purification tablets/drops, a couple pots, a couple lighters, a couple blankets, a couple tarps. etc.) Put everything in rubbermaid containers or duffelbags so that it is easily transportable. Even if you don't go as far as what I just described you should at least have some food and water on hand.
Cara,Not to pick on Leroy but this area is full of people claiming to be from another area (usually further NE) where people do not get so worked up about snow. This then brings the usual retort that we do not budget as much for snow plows as they do in Boston or New York.I'd challenge Leroy to drive on some unplowed cul de sacs in Fairfax, Loudoun, or Prince William County on Saturday afternoon but I don't want him to get stuck and suffer. ;)
tbw,What's funny is that either the NE is full of transplants too, or other than budgeting more for plows (since they have more storms) they freak out just as much. Going into the grocery store in Boston or Providence the day before a storm isn't any better than here. Though they do buy more Parmalot and less fresh milk.See, I have emergency food. Moved it with us from the apartment. (although we had intentionally fully depleted our frozen big-buy meat stocks before moving). But I don't really want to eat it just because the grocery will be crowded tonight. I see no reason why I can't get my normal bi-weekly shopping done when it's not even snowing. But I will be shifting that from Saturday to tonight. Although, technically, yes, there is a grocery I could walk to.
Just back from Giant. And no, I'm not some kind of nut. I needed to re-fill a prescription (only enough for today left). I am from Upstate New York and spent three years in Canada.Most people could probably go at least 2 weeks off their pantry and freezer. I wanted some bread and milk.The wild card is the Super Bowl this weekend. I saw lots of beer going out the door, together with chips, etc. The various dips were just about gone. Half the bread was gone and milk was down to quarts or whole milk gallons. Why don't people drink whole milk anymore?The pharmacy line was ridiculous as was the deli.Anyway, I expect it will get worse when people get off work.For me, all I need is peanut butter and jelly (and bread or saltines) plus some adult beverages.I agree that people down here cannot drive in the snow. We northerner's can but not when the natives or southern immigrants are out there.
"I'd challenge Leroy to drive on some unplowed cul de sacs in Fairfax, Loudoun, or Prince William County on Saturday afternoon but I don't want him to get stuck and suffer. ;)"It all depends how much of it there is. A few inches in no big deal at all. If you are talking about a foot or more snow clearance can become a problem. I am not claiming to be superman or some kind of an expert on snow, but I did live in an area that received 80+ inches of snow in an average year.
Man, I had coupon deals planned for this weekend too.
Cara-Having a grocery that you can walk to doesn't always mean it will be open. I remember at least two huge storms in the 90s (before internet) where we walked 3 miles with a sled to carry food home, but the grocery store was closed. We had to settle for whatever 7-11 had.
I think I'll hit up the grocery store early in the morning. If it's swamped then I'll just do without. I'm already hearing from coworkers whose spouses are at the stores that it is not pretty at all. Just finding a parking space at the Vienna Giant is hard enough right now.
Left work early to stop at Harris Teeter. I was just too busy at work for the past X days to go shopping before this PM. It was a madhouse, even around 4:30; I can only imagine what it's like now. To management's and the employees' credit, H-T had all checkout lanes open and staffed, with other employees in the parking lot/garage assisting people so that they could collect the carts more quickly. But it was still very slow going, with a lot of near stockouts on the shelves, even though employees were stocking as people were shopping. Annoyingly, meetings tomorrow have not been canceled despite the dire warnings to stay off the roads. :-(
Ace-Bummer on the meeting. Since I only live a couple of miles from my office. I figure I will work until I see the first flake of snow. Knowing the conditions can't get that bad in the 5-10 minutes it takes me to get home. Goodluck to all on driving safely tomorrow if you have to drive.
Thanks, housebuyer--and I drive a Toyota--life on the edge tomorrow!
Va_Investor: Good point on the Super Bowl. That probably is making it even more of a mad house. Cara: What is Parmalot? From googling it looks like it might be Parmalat -- Italian dairy products? I've never heard of this despite having some relatives in that area who married Italians.
Leroy, just FYI, Arlington emailed those of us on their listserv that we should be prepared to be snowed in 3-5 days.
housebuyer,Wow. I've never heard of grocery stores closing even in snowstorms. It must be a huge profit booster for them. And most grocery stores have generators if the power goes out.Maybe they just could not get enough store employees there to man the store.
Ace,Yikes. Well, I'm going to brave the grocery stores now. If you see a man fighting someone over the last gallon of milk that would be me. (Just kidding)
TBW-I am pretty sure that they just couldn't get enough people there. It was a couple feet of snow with some sleet/ice to top it off. I think they just didn't want to risk their employees lives by making them drive to work.
Just got back from Giant myself. I had great coupon tripes, lol. But it was pretty crazy there. Lots of people buying basically everything.
Xpovos said"An update: Since I'd posted about it here before. We finally closed on my grandfather's old place. Had to delay settlement three times due to financing issues for the buyer. Total time on market: about 9 months. What an ordeal."Hey. I just closed on an estate sale. I wonder if your buyer was me?Alexandria/Fairfax County?
http://franklymls.com/FX7001050Did these people not get the memo that if their house was on the market over 300 days raising the price $50k isn't a good thing? or am I missing something?
sehrwunderbar,The Redfin listing indicates it was delisted at one point in time. Maybe a short sale contract fell through. It is assessed for 390k and properties in that neighborhood seem to be selling for more than their 2009 assessments.
I found it interesting that the Washington, D.C. region did not show up on this list of top 10 places for job growth and high wages. Looks like maybe they factored in our overpriced housing stock when making their picks.Cities with the Best Jobs in 2010
"Leroy, just FYI, Arlington emailed those of us on their listserv that we should be prepared to be snowed in 3-5 days."That sounds like a good idea to me. The best thing for most people to do is just stay home and not try to continue their normal routines. Too many of them will end up flipping their suburbans over into a ditch thinking that because they have four wheel drive they can drive on snow like they would a dry road. When a snowstorm like this comes along most of the area should just consider it an unscheduled holiday and go sledding.
I am looking forward to the snow. Didn't buy a thing unlike some of you well-organized group of people. Don't even have a shovel.Few inches here & few inches there shouldn't be a big deal. As long as pizza places continue to deliver, I think I will survive.On housing, someone at work told me recently (who is looking to purchase TH) - "Do you know prices have doubled for folks who purchased 5 years ago in this region even after the recent price drops?"I said - "I know. But, it is mostly paper profit, unless they actually sold their property." He was looking at me as if I was talking in a foreign language. I said - "Do you know that prices have outpaced wage growth by astounding amount in this region?" And he is like - "Oh it is a great time to buy, my RE agent says so." I am like - "Yeah..sure he does."I doubt most people even remotely think about price/income, price/rent ratios or historical valuations for such a major purchase. I wonder how many such buyers are still out there looking to make significant money in RE. Majority of people I talk to, truly believe it is not possible to lose money in RE.
Spider-I agree that most people don't pay attention to what most metrics say. Other than they compare their rent to what they will pay if they buy. They expect to pay more, but if things seem way out of wack they may not buy.I also question where this guy is looking that prices are double 2005 levels. I agree there are plenty of places that are double 2000 prices, but nothing I have seen is double prices from 2005 levels.
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