Saturday, October 20, 2007

Kenneth R. Harney - Vultures Are Circling Over Distressed Properties -
I guess the housing market must be turning into a vulture's dreamland.

Call them grave dancers, vulture funds, turnaround specialists or the more euphemistic "opportunity investors." However you identify them, the deal is the same: When hyperactive real estate markets lose their sizzle, or property owners no longer can afford to hang on to their houses, well-capitalized investors smell blood and move in.

Friday, October 19, 2007

When Your Home Is Not Your Castle
The Motley Fool weighs in on HOAs and condos.

Unfortunately, it's virtually impossible to escape a homeowner's association. Most of the time, they're included in the language of your real estate deed, as a covenant that is legally attached to the land. That means that if you want to live in the neighborhood, you're stuck with the association.
Angry homeowners seek dissolution of association, board
Strange course of action considering how happy everybody is in these associations...according to the industry polls.
HUD Ends Effort To Collect Condo & HOA Fees | FHA Mortgage Guide
HOA Legi-Slate: HUD Rules on Escrowing Assessments
And decides not to require it. Maybe the disappearing escrowed property taxes around the country had something to do with this. When mortgage companies go bad...

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

The Brooklyn Paper: New face of vandalism?
Another entry in the municipality-as-HOA-impersonator genre:

A 6-year-old Park Slope girl is facing a $300 fine from the city for doing what city kids have been doing for decades: drawing a pretty picture with common sidewalk chalk.
Paulson Urges Action on Housing Crisis
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson called Tuesday for an aggressive response to deal with an unfolding housing crisis that he said presents a significant risk to the economy.
The Times-Tribune - West Side woman faces jail time for swearing at toilet
I think I have been guilty of this offense myself a few times. Good thing I don't live in West Scranton, PA. I like the "potty mouth" pun, though. How often does an opportunity like that come along?

A West Scranton woman could face up to 90 days in jail and a fine of up to $300 for allegedly shouting profanities at an overflowing toilet while inside her Luzerne Street home. Dawn Herb, whose potty mouth caught the attention of an off-duty police officer, was charged with disorderly conduct recently, prompting her to fire off a letter to the editor and vow to fight the charge.