Friday, March 30, 2007

Rowhouses in Foggy Bottom

900 block of 25th Street NW
Washington, DC

26 comments:

  1. Yes, there are row houses in Foggy Bottom. Some of them are painted pastel colors.

    And....?

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  2. Very nice! ... Though definitely not a "starter house" David.

    Now, you might find a very similar and affordable house to these elsewhere in town such as near the H St NE corridor or in Eckington. Even when I was looking a few years ago there were great deals there ... I'd imagine it's even better now. Btw, the homes pictured were in a past life considered to be "in a bad part of town" ... But foretunately people with little cash but good taste were able to be visionaries about where that area would someday go after the old factory buildings and beer plant would be pulled down ... and replaced with the Kennedy Center and the Watergate and an expanded GW Univ. I'm sure there are similar visionaries out there now buying in places like H St NE and Eckington. I wonder if that includeds BHs ... or do they prefer instead to just luck into a house (and neighborhood) that someone else has tended to and maintained and improved over many years?

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  3. You must have just got a new digital camera.

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  4. lance said "I'm sure there are similar visionaries out there now buying in places like H St NE and Eckington. I wonder if that includeds BHs ... or do they prefer instead to just luck into a house (and neighborhood) that someone else has tended to and maintained and improved over many years?"

    Talking out of both sides of your mouth again lance.

    First BH should look at a house as an "expense" now they should look at it as an "investment".

    Why don't YOU post a like to a "starter" house in that area.

    Sorry lance, you're washed up. You just lost all credibility you ever came close to having when you admitted you believe the government (i.e. taxpayers i.e. those who weren't stupid and bought in the bubble) should pay for those "less fortunate", those poor, poor "sub-prime" borrowers (and FORCE taxpayers to do it). If you want taxpayers to foot the bill, you should live in a country where it was tried . . . Cuba, Russia, China . . . and failed.

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  5. "You must have just got a new digital camera. "

    Yes sir. :-)

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  6. From the March 22nd edition of The Economist:

    http://www.economist.com/finance/displaystory.cfm?story_id=8885853

    --Subprime borrowers now account for one in five new mortgages and 10% of all mortgage debt

    --13% of subprime borrowers are behind on their payments

    --80% of subprime loans made in 2006 included low “teaser” rates

    --almost eight out of ten Alt-A loans were “liar loans”, based on little or no documentation

    --loan-to-value ratios were often over 90% with a second piggy-bank loan routinely thrown in

    --40% of all originations last year were subprime or Alt-A

    --60% of all adjustable-rate loans made since 2004 will be reset to payments that will be 25% higher or more

    --A fifth will see monthly payments soar by 50% or more

    --Just under 7% of all American homeowners had “negative equity” at the end of December 2006

    --18% of all people who took mortgages out in 2006 now have negative equity

    --A quarter of all mortgages due to reset in 2008 are in the same miserable state [negative equity]

    --one in three of the recent “teaser” loans will end in default

    --The harshest year will be 2008, when many mortgages will be reset and few borrowers will have much equity

    --if house prices fall, the picture darkens. every percentage point drop in house prices would bring 70,000 extra repossessions

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  7. I'm not sure if anyone can predict what changes will happen to a neighborhood over a long time frame. People who bought in Foggy Bottom before the Kennedy Center was built? That got started in 1958, although it wasn't finished until 1971. A "visionary" would've had to have bought at least 40 years ago! Think of all that changed in the past 40 years!

    Its interesting to read about the history of neighborhoods in DC. Anacostia, for example, was a moderate income suburb until the 1950s, when the combination of the highway, public housing, and desegregation totally changed the demographics:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anacostia

    Columbia Heights has had ups and downs, too:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Columbia_Heights%2C_Washington%2C_D.C.

    There are plenty of other stories on wikipedia about neighborhood histories.

    What you'll find is that neighborhood changes are driven by all kinds of unpredictable things: new technology such as transportation (streetcars, automobiles/highways, metro) and also social movements (immigration, desegregation, civil rights) and even particular events, such as the riots after MLK's assasination.

    Could anyone in the 1940s have known what the next 30 years would've brought for Columbia heights or Anacostia? Or what about someone in the 1970s? How can anyone be so presumptuous to say anything about the next 30 years? Housing is a reflection of society and changes in society are impossible to predict.

    I find this blog enjoyable for the perspectives of the people here, including Lance. But I think that a lot of people here need to step back and rethink things.

    Lance: are you really so arrogant that you think you can predict the future of society and its impact on housing? Globalization, super-wealthy, whatever? And why does it matter if housing is just an expense? If its only an expense, you shouldn't care about home values once you've bought your home!

    The rest of you: yes, prices are very high. Yes, prices went through the roof in the past several years without a corresponding change to incomes, etc. But you may need to rethink your ideas about where prices will go. A 50% drop? 1999 levels, adjusted for inflation? Who knows? No one could've predicted the magnitude of the run-up we've had, so who's gonna predict the aftermath? I've noticed that people on this and other bubble blogs are worried about inflation. Run the numbers: inflation doesn't have to increase that substantially before buying a house now is not a bad idea.

    I guess my point is this: housing and home prices are VERY complicated issues. No one can predict what's going to happen in 30 years (the life of a mortgage) or even 5 years!

    Buying a house is a big decision. Big financial decision. Big lifestyle decision. And the outcome depends on things you can't predict. What's changed in your own lives in the past 5 years? What'll change in the next? Will you get married? have kids? get divorced? Change jobs? Get transfered? Who knows?

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  8. Lance needs to get on the phone to the Economist's editorial staff and give them a lecture on the "new paradigm" so they don't fall for the crazy bubblehead conspiracy theories!

    Quick lance! Before it is too late!

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  9. "Though definitely not a "starter house" David.

    Yes, exactly, where I am originally from, starter homes are much better.
    Indeed, such homes would likely be referred to as a slum and/or flophouse.

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  10. There should be no bailout of the homebuilders, subprime/Alt A lenders, or the borrowers.
    You will only be transferring the huge costs to already overburdened but responsible taxpayers.

    The HB, lenders, and borrowers involved in this asset bubbles should have personal accountability and responsibility for their own actions and decisions. You make wrong decisions, you pay a price. This is not heads you win, tails you don't lose thanks to the already overtaxed and overdebt laden other taxpayers of America.

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  11. Boy that Economist article is a real whack on the nose with a hot poker. Let's review the worst:

    --A fifth will see monthly payments soar by 50% or more

    --Just under 7% of all American homeowners had “negative equity” at the end of December 2006

    --18% of all people who took mortgages out in 2006 now have negative equity

    --A quarter of all mortgages due to reset in 2008 are in the same miserable state [negative equity]

    There is no way this doesn't turn into a disaster without serious inflation.

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  12. I'm not partial to town houses, but those are not bad looking! :)

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  13. Lance, another place where you might want to take a picture is the Metropole going up at 15th and P NW. One of the interesting things is that Fremont Investment and Loan is financing the project. That's right...the same Fremont that had their subprime lending unit shut down by the FDIC, except in this case the commercial lending part of Fremont is financing this condo building. I ride by this development every day on one of the commuter buses.

    http://www.metropolis-dc.com

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  14. Don't Expect Easy Bargains at Foreclosure Sales

    By Benny L. Kass
    Saturday, March 31, 2007; Page F11


    www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/03/30/AR2007033000977.html

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  15. Don't Expect Easy Bargains at Foreclosure Sales

    Ha Ha Ha. This is too funny. Most of you probably won't get this, but I think Lance has already reached the last stage: Acceptance.

    http://www.oc-fliptrack.com/2007/03/stages-of-grief.html

    To those who don't get the joke: Lance has gone from denial, anger to the last step directly. Acceptance.

    To Lance: Dude, this is just beginning. You don't want us to swoop up foreclosures right now. Ok. We will wait. This is just the start baby.

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  16. I take it then that Lance admits the foreclosures are coming... one more "irrational bubblehead dream" is coming true...

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  17. Anonymous said...
    "I take it then that Lance admits the foreclosures are coming... one more "irrational bubblehead dream" is coming true..."

    no .... foreclosures are here and always have been here. What is interesting in the article is that it confirms what Va_Investor has been saying ... that when it comes to buying a foreclosure, the process is so complicated that it's investors and NOT inexperienced BH types that are able to buy one. I.e., That which BHs are hoping unto others, if it actually occured to the scale they are hoping, would help the likes of Va_Investor ... and not them. Beautiful irony!

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  18. Lance, you just can't help yourself. once again you show what a pompous nitwit you really are. now you are telling us that only VA INVESTOR (who is so uber smart) will be able to navigate the maze that buying a foreclosure is. Yes, the rest of us "know nothings" just have no abilities, no brains and no sense...you are a jerk.

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  19. "That which BHs are hoping unto others, if it actually occured to the scale they are hoping, would help the likes of Va_Investor ... and not them. Beautiful irony! "

    How is that ironic? The point is that as foreclosures increase there will be larger numbers of houses coming onto the market and that will ultimately help to drive prices down. It doesn't matter WHO buys a given house, the point is that the overall supply is increasing.

    Besides, foreclosures are not nearly as complicated as you seem to think... Yes, there is more involved... but that hardly means it takes a professional investor to get one.

    Lets not play games here. VA_Investor is barely smarter than you lance. Neither of you comes close to being an "expert" on real estate.

    She is a small time landlord and you don't even register on the scale. (ok, so you sublet the basement of the house you are renting from the bank... its nothing the averge college undergraduate hasn't done)

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  20. "if it actually occured to the scale they are hoping, would help the likes of Va_Investor ..."

    Actually, it would help both. Foreclosures increase housing supply supply and lower price.

    The prices just keep dropping.

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  21. When I posted above, I meant to post the message for David, not Lance. Sorry about that.

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  22. That article about foreclosure sales isn't too bad. Definitely one of the better ones I have seen in a well-known newspaper. There are some generalizations and wishful thinking in there, but it's not too bad.

    I think the comment I disagree with most is the generalization that people want to avoid foreclosure because it will mess up their credit. While that's true, most of them want to stay in the house even more. A lot of the time these homeowners are in denial until it's too late for them to do anything about it.

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  23. anon said:
    "Yes, exactly, where I am originally from ... such homes would likely be referred to as a slum and/or flophouse."

    Probably because they are! Perhaps you should consider moving back to your rust belt city and enjoy all the wonderful economic opportunities that come with urban decay.

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  24. David wants a townhouse in DC. Is that correct, David?

    --Not the other anon.

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  25. "David wants a townhouse in DC. Is that correct, David?"

    No, he wants some crummy "modern" townhome in Maryland. For some reason.

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  26. Lance said...
    “What is interesting in the article is that it confirms what Va_Investor has been saying ... that when it comes to buying a foreclosure, the process is so complicated that it's investors and NOT inexperienced BH types that are able to buy one”

    Oh no “Lance”, this stuff is just too complicated. We’re just plain ‘ole common folk and just can’t understand the nuances of purchasing a home, much less one that is in foreclosure.

    (For all others; If you think you may have found a seller in Maryland facing foreclosure, you can verify here:

    http://casesearch.courts.state.md.us/inquiry/inquiry-index.jsp

    You’ll need the name of the seller which can easily be found in the tax records:

    http://sdatcert3.resiusa.org/rp_rewrite/

    Moreover, to find the actual loan documents check here:

    http://mdlandrec.net

    You’ll need a password, but it’s free. Keep a sharp eye on those documents for an ARM rider. Priceless.

    The attorney handling the case for the lender can be helpful and in the least, can keep you informed of the status of the property.

    Furthermore, if the property has been on the market for quite some time and the seller is asking say, $350K, but owes $200K, I see some leverage there. Even further, by contacting the attorney/Lender, you’ve gone around the seller altogether, negating any emotional ties that may preclude selling. It’s now simply a business transaction.)

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