Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Bubble Sphere Roundup

Housing prices sharply declining in California. (Housing Panic)

Interview with Lawrence Yun. (Hot Property)

Some people are looking for alternatives to standard real estate agents. Redfin could be the answer. What about Ziprealty?

Housing Watch tracks housing numbers in many metro areas. Solid info!

Where in the World is David Lereah?


  1. Redfin at least acknowledges the skewed incentive structure of the traditional broker, but they still are paid on commission (albeit 1% instead of 3%). Also, they charge to show properties, which is understandable, and actually more honest than the other approach, which is to lull a buyer with unlimited "free" help, followed by taking a disproportionately large cut of a huge purchase. But it's worth noting -- it's not free.

    See for a good analysis of the broken broker incentive system. Really, I want a broker who is paid more, the less I pay for a good house. That's the correct incentive.


  2. McCain vs. Obama and Clinton regarding bailouts:

    Drawing a sharp distinction between himself and the two Democratic presidential candidates, Senator John McCain of Arizona warned Tuesday against vigorous government action to solve the deepening mortgage crisis and the market turmoil it has caused, saying that “it is not the duty of government to bail out and reward those who act irresponsibly, whether they are big banks or small borrowers.”

    Mr. McCain’s comments came a day after Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York called for direct federal intervention to help affected homeowners, including a $30 billion fund for states and communities to assist those at risk of foreclosure. Mrs. Clinton’s Democratic opponent, Senator Barack Obama of Illinois, has similarly called for greater federal involvement, including creation of a $10 billion relief package to prevent foreclosures.

  3. 1 in every 79 Americans has a real estate license. The hard part is sorting the good from the bad. The Broker system works b/c real estate is always local and always built on referrals. The best brokers will hire the best people, do the best job, and get all the referrals for doing so. Sadly, the most "successful agents" are the ones who market themselves the most. Newspapers, internet, magazines, signs, etc. You know the name, but not the product. Do you search the net for a doctor? For a jeweler? If so, you are paying too much. Find someone who had a great experience, then you will find real value.

    Want to know the best way to figure out the best agents? Ask a settlement attorney. We know the most reputable agents and lenders b/c they are the best to work with.

    Go to my anon email account if you want a good agent. One who knows real estate, not marketing. One who listens, is responsible, knows specific neighborhoods and what is valued within that neighborhood.

    Not someone who wants to make a sale. They want to do a great job to get your business in 10 years and all of your friends business. And b/c they are honest, and like to sleep well at night.

    Note: I have done numerous settlements with Redfin. They have sucked. They allow their client to over-pay and never communicate as advertised.


    Lennar, nation's No. 3 builder by revenue, sees volume, value of sales plunge, forcing fourth straight quarterly loss.

    March 27, 2008: 6:53 AM EDT

    NEW YORK ( -- Home builder Lennar reported its fourth straight quarterly loss Thursday and warned that conditions in the battered housing market continue to worsen due to a glut of homes on the market and ongoing problems in the mortgage market.

  5. big fan of the fin.

  6. greenpark, thanks for your unbiased opinion, how's bidness?

  7. Business is slow. Prices remain firm, but the number of transactions are down..... It is to be expected. I am trying to make as many connections while people are slow and hopefully reap the benefits when things return to normal.

    One nice thing about the slow-down: It is washing all of the hacks, wannabes, and cheats out of the business. I am hoping this "housing crisis" deters unreputable agents/lenders from entering the business for the next 20 years.

    -- greenpark13

  8. greenpark13 said:

    "hopefully reap the benefits when things return to normal."

    A correction IS a return to "normal," dude.

    That is why it is called a "correction."

  9. "normal" referred to the number of transactions, not prices.