August 10, 2013

Chuck Norris Doesn’t Host An Open House

Chuck Norris decides you will buy his house. Chuck Norris also decides which agent you’ll use. Chuck Norris.  Thanks very much to Chuck Norris for deciding that Burbed reader nomadic would send this in.

Chuck Norris’ ‘Walker, Texas Ranger’ house is for sale

130809-chuck-norris

By Patrick Kevin Day, Los Angeles Times
July 24, 2013, 8:05 p.m.

They say Chuck Norris doesn’t host an open house. He decides you’re going to buy his house.

Norris doesn’t want the Dallas-area home that once served as the on-screen domicile of his alter ego Cordell Walker on "Walker, Texas Ranger," so he’s listed it.

Chuck Norris also decides there will be massive overbidding. And since this is Your Chuck Norris’ Weekend Open Thread, this is where Chuck Norris decides which other Open Houses you will go to this weekend. Chuck Norris has also decided you will post about your experience in comments.

What do you mean you’re not checking out our comments? Chuck Norris says you most certainly are.

Comments (3) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:08 am






August 4, 2013

Another Bay Area Bubble Call!

We’ve been boosting the Bay Area Bubble 4.0 news all year. Now, another voice joins in the chorus we started months ago. And this is a one of our long-time fans, PK from DQYDJ! That stands for Don’t Quit Your Day Job.  Recently PK revisited the post that introduced the Bay Area Income and Home calculator, so this is definitely worth your while!

Bay Area Housing Prices: Beware the Inflating Bubble

130803-dqydj-graphPosted By PK    Last updated July 14th, 2013

Two years ago (well, September 28, 2011 anyway), we regaled you on this site with tales about how the Bay Area’s home prices – while admittedly quite high – were complete justifiable.  If you don’t have time to read those prescient words, I can summarize: home prices may have been high in 2011, but Bay Area households pulled in a ton of income (second only to the Government driven economies around Washington, D.C.), making houses somewhat affordable to many households in the area.

Am I proud of that call now that we’ve seen 20% year over year price returns in many areas, and 52% absolute returns on the house I purchased in July 2011?  Well, yeah, of course I am.  However, the mark of a truthful person is to change your opinion when presented with new data.  Here’s to being honest: the Bay Area is getting pretty frothy.

Told ya.

While we do want you to head over to PK’s site and read it, we’ve got the new calculators for you to play around with right here for afters.  First, here’s where you can see how well your income stacks up against the competition. Zuckerberg, you’re not, but go ahead and type in your income and see where you are compared to everyone else.

Remember, Inner Bay Area isn’t quite the same thing as Real Bay Area, because the former is by county. Everyone in San Francisco, San Mateo and Santa Clara is included. Unfortunately they also invited Alameda and Contra Costa Counties, and by adding those East Bay locales the numbers already skew down.  Leaving out Marin County made prices even lower! Wanted: data so we can unskew these calculators by zip code!

Next, here’s the home edition, whoops, the home value edition.  Are you building a Larry Page-type compound in the most prestigious part of Palo Alto? Didn’t think so. But you can find out how affordable your home is, or the home you’re thinking of buying, or the home Larry Page is going to buy.

Let us know what you think of PK’s calculators, or anything else you’d like to talk about.  Yes, it’s Weekend Open Thread time!  How affordable were the Open Houses you saw this weekend?

Comments (4) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:02 am

July 27, 2013

Coming to a listing near you

130726-bowers-placementProduct placement in movies and television have been going on for a while.  Remember the Reese’s Pieces in E.T.? If you see a brand in a movie or other video, you can be sure it was put there deliberately.

Well then… why haven’t realtards tried product placement in listing photos? After all, buyers are such a fickle lot, underbidding during bubbles and expecting freebies thrown in like refrigerators and kitchen cabinets when the sellers have every right to keep them. At least if they had product placement to fall back on, there would be some bucks in it for them, whether or not the house sold!

Let’s have a look at a really egregious example of product placement. We’re not talking about a loving paean to Andersen Windows or Bosch dishwashers that are features of the house for sale, either.

130726-bowers-greygoose

130726-bowers-greygoose-farHere’s the Redfin listing, where you’ll find another photo of the booze.  The even better Bunus portion of this amusing photo is where we found this REGULAR SALE!

Would you buy your next house from this realty firm?

And it’s Open Thread time! Tell us what products you saw placed when you looked at open houses!

Comments (7) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:07 am

July 20, 2013

Another fine home!

Today’s Real Estate Photo Win was submitted by Michael Boltonestater, who notes that this screengrab came from the TV show Arrested Development.

130719-carr-foreclosed

Wait, there’s cupcakes at Open Houses? We’ve been seriously missing out! When we visit an Open House, we’re happy if the agent puts out bottled water.

Let us know what kind of snacks you find this weekend, as this is your Weekend Open Thread!

Comments (1) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:03 am

July 13, 2013

Congratulations! You now have your equity back!

Here’s an interesting piece of Real Estate pr0n received by Burbed reader nomadic.

130712-congrats-equity

In case you cannot view the graphic, here’s the text:

Congratulations!

You now have your equity back!
Prices have shot past the all-time
highs in many areas.
-As-Is Sales-
-Top Sale Prices-
-Minimal Preparation-

What’s Your Home’s Current Value?

Two Beautiful California Peaks

 

(with photos of Half Dome and a large red arrow labeled 2013 Real Estate Values getting bigger and fatter as well as higher on a graph with no labels). The last segment appears to have a rise to run ratio of 8, so perhaps the X axis is fortnights and the Y is mills.

For the record, real estate prices have gone up about 15-20 percent, which would be a rise to run ratio of, well, at most one fifth. You know. 20%.  A one to one ratio is a straight line at a 45 degree angle.

This is your weekend Open Thread, and it may have to last you all weekend, too. Do you have your equity back? You know if you lived in the Real Bay Area you never would have misplaced it in the first place.

Comments (4) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:05 am

July 6, 2013

Fake Realty Win: North Side of made-up city is “better”

Any reader of this blog knows that some parts of the Bay Area are just better than others, and that’s what we call the “Real Bay Area.” Do you know where the RBA is? According to this study, it’s probably north of you.

Study Points to Bias Toward a City’s North Side

People tend to see the north as more desirable and affluent, in turn fueling stereotypes about where the rich live

130705-north-mapBy Sanette Tanaka, The Wall Street Journal
SPREAD SHEET, July 4, 2013, 8:14 p.m. ET

North, south, east or west, researchers find north seems best.

Most people, knowing nothing else about a city, would rather live in the northern half of town than in the southern, says Brian Meier, associate professor of psychology at Gettysburg College in Gettysburg, Pa. People tend to see the north as more desirable and affluent, in turn fueling stereotypes about where the rich and the poor live.

"For some reason, people see the north and south as very different," Prof. Meier says. "When all else is equal, people have this bias to think that northerly areas are better or more affluent.

Prof. Meier and co-authors Arlen Moller of Northwestern University, and Julie Chen and Miles Riemer-Peltz, both of Gettysburg College at the time, conducted four studies with groups ranging from 28 to 87 participants to see how "north" and "south" affects housing preferences. The study, "Spatial Metaphor and Real Estate: North-South Location Biases Housing Preference," was published in Social Psychological and Personality Science in August 2011.

130705-north-heatscWe’re going to note a fairly seriously flaw in this study (or at least Tanaka’s description of it) right off the bat: the participants aren’t identified in terms of where they live. We know what schools the researchers did the study out of, but this article doesn’t indicate if the participants were from the surrounding regions, randomly chosen throughout the United States, or were a worldwide sample. And that’s actually an important bit of data. How could they possibly assume that all people, everywhere, prefer the north side of a city when we don’t know if anyone from the Southern Hemisphere was represented? Maybe South is the “better side” in Buenos Aires, Melbourne, and Christchurch.  Maybe South is superior if you get too far north as well, as it would get more sun.  Northern exposure isn’t a good thing if you want sunlight.

130705-north-mapmvThis silly study suggests people are so used to thinking of north as “up” on a map, that they conflate the direction with the emotion. We’ve just found that prices keep heading north as long as you’re looking at the RBA.  Although the heat map of Santa Clara County above suggests that high prices are found not in the north, but the northwest and to a lesser degree, the northeast. North Central, though, does not impress..And the map at right shows sales for hot, hot, HOT Mountain View, hottest in the part that is the Exact Opposite Of North.

And… open thread! What direction are you heading to check out Open Houses this weekend? Or, if you’re on vacation and can’t stay away from us, what direction did you head for your getaway?

Comments (5) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:22 am

June 29, 2013

You know what they got? KAWLUMS

It’s been a while since we’ve been sent a MAWBUL KAWLUM heavy house. We miss them so much we were forced to present this one from (gasp) Southern California.

Good thing we just reordered red arrows.

130628-buggy-kawlums

The house itself is hideously overdone in Middle-Aged Movie Executive With Unlimited Budget, including the kawlum-bedecked indoor tennis court that meets US Open requirements. And no, we aren’t kidding. 

130628-buggy-tennis

We didn’t even know there was a standard for kawlums at the US Open.

Let us know if any US Open Houses you tour this weekend have kawlums. Or tennis courts. Yes, this is your Weekend US Open Thread.

Comments (4) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:01 am

June 23, 2013

Landlords from Hell settle for jail instead

Here’s a cheery story for you if you don’t like your landlord, as it will set things into a much better perspective.  Thanks very much to Burbed reader nomadic for alerting us to this development.

‘Landlords from hell’ accept prison terms for terrorizing tenants

130619-macys-mugshotsBy Lee Romney, Los Angeles Times, June 19, 2013, 2:45 p.m.

SAN FRANCISCO — A software engineer and his real estate agent wife who terrorized their tenants in a twisted attempt to force them to move are back after fleeing to Italy, and each has accepted a four-year prison sentence and two strikes rather than face trial, Dist. Atty. George Gascon announced Wednesday.

Nicknamed the "landlords from hell," Kip and Nicole Macy employed tactics "so outlandish and brazen" in attempting to clear their building of renters that "it sounds like the plot of a horror movie," Gascon said.

They each pleaded guilty to two felony counts of residential burglary, one felony count of stalking and one felony count of attempted grand theft. In custody on $2-million bail apiece, they are scheduled to be sentenced Aug. 22.

Kip Macy’s attorney, Lisa DewBerry, said the couple could have faced a maximum of 16 years in prison if tried on all charges.

130619-macys-sawBe sure to read the whole article, cataloging not only what the Macys were accused of doing to their tenants and their apartments, but also the part where they paid bail and fled the country for Milan and spent a year fighting extradition.

Don’t forget the power saw that popped up into one of the tenant’s floor without warning (the photo at left shows what happened when he whacked the blade with a nearby hammer).  There’s even accusations of email spoofing.  And here’s an older piece from Palo Alto Online when they were first hit with the charges; what’s interesting are the comments defending the Macys from the evil San Francisco tenants. Why, some of them read as if they were written from the perps themselves!  Why Palo Alto Online for a San Francisco story?  This caring couple lived in Palo Alto when they were accused of all these shenanigans. Kip was a software engineer and Nicole was… a realtard.

130619-macys-clementinaHere’s the building where all the fun took place. Don’t you want to go out and buy an apartment building in SF right now?

This is also your weekend open thread! How’s the renter life treating you? Is it awful enough to make you want to look at a bunch of Open Houses and overbid up the wazoo?  How about chatting up the other people at the Open House so you can spoof email saying they don’t want the property you’re trying to score? Hey, in a competitive market Insane Real Estate Bubble, the only way to win is to prevent everyone else from playing.

Comments (15) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:03 am

June 15, 2013

Open House Time. Real Open.

130614-hwy14-wtfSpring Bounce will be over very soon, leading to Summer Bummer. So get your open house visits in while there’s still nothing in inventory because foreigners with suitcases full of cash are buying up everything.  Just think, if Bay Area Bubble continues expanding, you can head to Washington and see home décor like this.

Fortunately, in the Real Bay Area, people do not display amateur carvings of naked women mated to boat prows.  You’re far more likely to find a pinball machine or an open wire closet than hundreds of dollars of wood that would be better used as high-quality flooring.

Let us know what you find in this weekend’s open house visits, because this is your weekend’s Open Thread.  Feel free to open your shirt, lean back and stay a while.

Thanks very much to Christin’s Redfin Collections page Just Wow for featuring this… work of… bark.

Comments (1) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:07 am

June 8, 2013

Deserted… We mean Desert Home

It’s the weekend! That means Open House Time! It also means we need to come up with some filler article, because everyone’s too busy planning on visiting Open Houses to spend all day commenting on Burbed.

While you visit homes and plan by how much you’ll overbid, here’s a honey for you to handle. It’s just a short drive out of the Bay Area… and out of Northern California… and out of the LA Basin… and out of the Southland. On the other hand, you literally could pay for this house with money you find under your couch cushions with the E-Z Seller Financing!

Thanks very much to Christin whose Redfin Collection “Just Wow” featured this… um… property.

130607-lorilisa-redfin1 LORI LISA Rd
29 Palms, CA 92277
$9,000

0 Beds
— Baths
400 Sq. Ft.
$23 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1957
Lot Size: 5 Acres
On Redfin: 141 days
Property Type: Residential, Single Family
View: Desert
County: San Bernardino
Style: One Level, Cabin
Community: Wonder Valley
MLS#: DC13006684

Want a secluded cabin on 5 acres next to open desert? This is the one! Has electric in street. The old cabin needs some work but hey it has got 4 walls up, just missing the room. Also on land is out house in pretty good condition. Old stove/bbq thing that is cool and looks like it could be used, inside cabin are old antique stove and sink. Seller will finance this jewel with 20% down @ 7 % interest all due 5 years. From Amboy Road go north on Meriwether Road all the way to the end then take a left on Lori Lisa Road and there is the cabin on the right side.

Jewel indeed, and all you need is $1,800! Look at all you get, in addition to this awesome listing copy!

130607-lorilisa-just-add-room130607-lorilisa-wood-wood-wood130607-lorilisa-cabin130607-lorilisa-cabin2130607-lorilisa-cabin3130607-lorilisa-eddie-albert

But wait! There’s more!

130607-lorilisa-what130607-lorilisa-outhouse130607-lorilisa-stove

Operators – we mean the seller – is, um, are standing by!  As is today’s Weekend Open Thread! Let us know how deserted the Open Houses were you saw today!

Comments (9) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:02 am