Read it all.
Who is that character from “The Simpsons” who always says, “ha ha”? Nelson? Well, I was Nelsoning myself all through this article. 😉
Well, I can’t feel sorry for these people who bought far beyond their needs and means. This is Southern California, and the market is way overblown to begin with. In my neighborhood, a 40 year-old, one story home with three tiny bedrooms, 1100 square feet, no upgrades, sold last year for just under $800,000. That’s crazy! A similar home in the Midwest would sell for under $150,000. The people I feel sorry for are those who are priced out of even the most modest homes. There isn’t a ramshackle two-bedroom home on the market for less than $3 or $400,000. Those aren’t selling, either.
We have been overbuilding for years, ruining wild areas from the southwest to the east coast in the name of profit while many of our great cities with magnificent (if well used) infrastructure rot from the inside out. Baltimore, Detroit, Rochester, Cleveland, Gary…shall I go on? Communities disintegrating, great immigrant churches closing their doors, all in the name of an anonymous suburban dream that is nothing but a facade.
Sorry, but this urbanite needs to rant.
We are reaping what we have sown.
If you can’t afford an expensive megahome, don’t buy it……if you can’t afford to rent, consider moving to a more affordable area. If you can’t do either because of your career or job, consider buying a manufactured home in a community built for such homes. There are advantages such as clubhouses, pools, and other recreational facilities.
The numbers in this article don’t add up. They bought it for $1M 2-3 years ago and now expect to sell for $2M? Let’s say they put 200-300K in for improvements – they are still asking for $700K in profit. I’m having trouble feeling empathy.
John Nelson, it does add up. In Southern California, house values have doubled in the last 3 1/2 years–at least, mine has, and it’s nowhere near a “McMansion”–it’s a very modest home that’s starting to show its age. I expect that prices will fall just as precipitously as they rose, but at the moment, they’re falling slowly. Although it’s nice to think about what my home is “worth” at the moment, finding someone to pay that price (and probably saddle themselves with three loans) isn’t realistic. I don’t care much because I bought my house 35 years ago, so even if I were to sell it for hundreds of thousands of dollars less than comparable homes, I’d still make a hefty profit. As I said, the housing market in S. California is crazy. The losers are those who bought at the top of the market. Maybe they can get a break on their taxes. Somebody needs to pop this overinflated balloon!
Sue – I’ve lived is CA also – it’s has been a boom / bust housing market for 30 years – I acknowledge that people who bought in late 2006 could be look at serious losses, but not the family in this article. Even if they sell their house for $1.3M, way below what they are asking, they break even. Why should we have empathy for people who get caught up in the fear and greed cycle and then cry when their crazy expectations are not met?
The answer is simple: If you can’t afford it, don’t buy it! Avoid adjustable rate mortgages like the plague! Stay away from “zero down payment” offers, or you’ll get nailed! The balloon payments are killers!
Above all: Don’t live beyond your means, and stop trying to make money from someone else’s misfortunes.
They gambled and lost, that’s the way it goes. They got greedy. They bought a house (they couldn’t afford in the long term) for a million dollars and gambled that it would appreciate by a few 100 thousand within a couple of years and they would make some easy money, well it didn’t appreciate and they lost and that’s the way it goes. Pay up.