Chicken Little 2.0

Local blog, Flippers in Trouble, received a mention recently in a Forbes.com article about the best places to flip a home.

Watching asking prices drop on flipper properties–those bought and sold within two years, according to real estate agents–has become a sport in the Sacramento real estate blogosphere. By filtering official Multiple Listing Service (MLS) data, the blog Flippers In Trouble tracks every area flipper–those who bought a home in the last two years–and reports who is trying to sell his property for less than he paid.

So, uh, I guess congratulations are in order? After 1 or 2 or 1,348 listings don’t you sort of get the picture that folks are having a hard time flipping properties? It’s a down market, we get it. I wonder if sacbee.com sponsors this Web site because they love them some piling on about the housing market.

UPDATE: Turns out we aren’t the only ones with the market cornered on snark. The folks over at Sacramento Land(ing) are having some fun with this post, too. Nice work, guys.

Demographic fun from Zillow

I didn’t even think about the fun one could have with the Demographics features on that new Zillow thing until my wife pointed it out. This is how one can learn that Boulevard Park folks are more likely to be females working for non-profits, or speak Gujarati. Or that New Era Park is lesbian-friendly, or that Elmhurst is home to the Humble Class. Or that there is a neighborhood called Brentwood (it’s over near the Exec Airport) that has a freakishly flat age distribution and lots of Puerto Ricans who speak Hindi and Laotian. The possibilities are endless.

Community real estate features on Zillow

Real estate site Zillow.com announced two new community features yesterday, including Neighborhood Pages, which allows residents to create content about their neighborhoods. Not just cities, but neighborhoods, like Alkali Flat or Richmond Grove or Poverty Ridge. And there is a main Sacramento page with one piece of content, a photo by yours truly.

That main page has links to all the covered neighborhoods, so make sure to check yours out.

Movin’ On Up: Where would you want to live?

Here’s the assignment:

We have a new Supervisor at my company moving to Sacramento from Albuquerque, NM.  He will not be my direct supervisor, so I can afford to be honest with him.  As a Sacramento native, I have been asked to help this new transfer in finding the appropriate part of town in which to live. 

Here are the parameters to keep in mind:   Our new resident is male, 35 years of age, single, no kids, in a professional job with a professional salary, he’s not at all “stuffy” (in fact quite the opposite).  He’s looking to rent or perhaps buy a condo and will probably have to go to El Dorado Hills and the airport with equal frequency (one or two times per week). 

Where do you think he should live?

New swanky location on Jay Street

The LoftTaking the bus up Jay street last night I saw “The Loft,” a new meeting/event spot at 727 1/2 J St. That half makes all the difference. A smart move would be to open up “Lofties” next door at 727 1/4 J st., and sell your wares to confused event attendees. I’m glad to see “the loft,” the alternative music venue, make a comeback, even if it is as a completely financially unrelated venue not intended for alternative music.

And since any mention of “the loft” must be accompanied by an unnecessary insult, I should add that one time when I was at “the loft” some cockroaches set up a civilization in the mouth the drummer of visiting band “Monad Nomad.” The roaches were discussing universal health care by the time anyone noticed due to the poor lighting.

(I should officially no longer wonder why people hate me so much.)

Those “real estate investor” signs…

Amanda Levy of Metroblogging Sacramento asked on Saturday what we have probably all wondered for a few months now…

I was just exiting the 80 by P Street in downtown Sac…I saw a sign for Real Estate Investor…make 10K to 20K per month…has anyone EVER made money by calling the numbers on one of those signs and signing up???? Seriously!!!

You’ve seen these hand-written signs, correct? I always assumed the reason he/she needed an apprentice was because he/she was clearly so busy making billions and billions of dollars in Real Estate to find a way to get those signs printed all professional-like!

How low will they go?

The story on top of the Wall Street Journal’s list of most-viewed and most-emailed stories today is about falling home prices nationwide. The WSJ’s a subscriber site, but I’m a subscriber, so … this link is good for seven days. Check out the chart at the bottom of the piece. The prediction is a 9.9 percent drop in Sacramento prices with the market bottoming out in the second quarter of 2008.

Faith and free shipping

I keep finding myself heading back to this story news10.net reported on last week. Some folks are burying small statues of Saint Joseph in their yards to help sell their homes. It appears that when times get tough and bubbles begin to burst, turning to religion and prayer is just the ticket. It’s just that this ticket has a specially reduced price tag of only $5.95.

From totallycatholic.com (no, I’m not joking):

Don’t be fooled by secular companies selling these! They promote this practice as superstition and ‘good luck’. We developed this St. Joseph House selling kit years ago and have sold thousands to devout Roman Catholics who understand the devotion related to this pious practice…Some secular companies are selling similar kits for $14.00 or more — we have kept our price low through the years to make it affordable for all!

Watch out, those secular companies are out to get you! Because, you know, having a business that is not overtly or specifically religious just screams of capitalism and exploitation. Oh, by the way, tc.com’s tiny bible keychains are on sale for $3.95 (you’ll need a magnifying glass to read it!).

Continue reading “Faith and free shipping”

Sac housing goes ironical

All right, it’s officially time to stop building new houses in the Sacramento region, now that I’ve discovered that there is a subdivision in Rocklin called Wisteria. That’s actually all I want to say about that. There is another subdivision called Fiddyment Farm which sounds like a neighborhood out of Dr. Seuss and is one letter away from being pronounced “Fiddy Cent Farm,” which is hilarious.