With 5,000 people moving here each month, somebody had to spill the beans!

August 26, 2009

I just learned (thanks Cheryl!) that Time.com took down the video I referred to in a recent blog post [Time Magazine Features Las Vegas Foreclosure: Article and Video] because of “some sensitivity with various issues”.  There is a very interesting article on the Las Vegas Sun website about the fallout from the Time’s article — specifically, the Realtor quoted in the piece is in hot water. 

In the original Time’s article, the Realtor (Brooke Boemio) bragged about “helping clients who are underwater on their mortgages buy a second house on the cheap and stop making payments on their first mortgages, pressuring the bank into selling the houses for a loss” [from the Sun article].   She said that “everybody’s doing it”, including herself.

That practice, along with breaking into a foreclosure house, did not reflect well on the real estate community and has since brought some heat to Ms. Boemio.  Since the story appeared, she no longer works for Coldwell Banker, having “parted ways”.

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August 14, 2009

As I was playing around with my iPod Touch, I stumbled upon Time Magazine’s iPod-based website.  The first article I found was a cover-piece about Las Vegas.  It was a very interesting article.  Here’s the link:

Article: http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,1915962,00.html

Along with the article, there was an associated video that followed a local real estate agent to two foreclosed properties, one of which was in Newport Lofts [recent blog post].  You’ve got to see this video.  Half of the units are empty, according to the real estate agent.  It’s startling what somebody was able to do at one of the lofts (change the locks?!?!).  They sneak into house later in the video to see the shape it’s in.  Here’s the video link:

Video: http://www.time.com/time/video/?bcpid=1485842900&bctid=33598672001

Have a great weekend everybody!

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November 30, 2008

Having recently been told by a cop who lives a few doors down to have a critical eye about any suspicious vehicle in the area, I saw a van+trailer in our neighborhood today that was out of place and decided to see what they were up to.

I was surprised by what I learned.

After a few questions, and while the woman I spoke to rifled through a large quantity of paperwork, I learned that this husband and wife team were “cleaners”. Fanny Mae had hired them to go to a foreclosed home that had been abandoned and to, well, clean it. . .inside and out. Their job is to remove any items left behind (tables, sofas, pots, pans, etc.) and to clean the place up. And besides getting the inside straighten up, they focus their efforts on the outside of the home and do some light yard maintenance as well.

Why was this a surprise?

Because we’ve seen several homes in the area that were in foreclosure and clearly being neglected as a result. This, of course, further increases the difficulty of selling one of these homes. Come to find out, the hiring of “cleaners” is a common practice of Fannie Mae. Who knew? This is good to know. Our Home Owners Association is currently dealing with the fact that the few foreclosures in our neighborhood are looking bad as a result of no yard maintenance. And getting the banks to respond to requests to clean a house, even if it includes fines, has proven largely unsuccessful.

Although this foreclosure business is bad news, and there is no question that Fannie Mae contributed mightily to this problem, I am happy that they are smart enough to recognize that a clean house, inside and OUT, is a more sellable house.

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October 17, 2008

  1. During the weekend, Melissa, Neil, Sarah and I checked out a some model homes in several neighborhoods throughout the Las Vegas Valley.  In two neighborhoods, they indicated that they were almost sold out. . .only six or so homes left.  Good news, right?

    Well, not exactly.

    After asking a bit more, the builder simply decided to stop building (for now).  Depending on the neighborhood, there were 20-40 empty lots that were going to stay empty until the economy recovers.  I would guess those folks living in those neighborhoods aren’t terribly happy.

  2. Saw online a house in our area that was being foreclosed.  The price was AMAZING.  In reviewing the photos of the interior of the house, I saw that all the cabinetry in the kitchen were missing.  I emailed the Realtor:

    ME: What happened to all the kitchen cabinets in this house?

    REALTOR: The kitchen cabinets were all missing when we first gained access to the property upon our assignment from the bank.  So as far as we know they were stolen previous to that.  We don’t know by who.

Huh?!?  Who steals the cabinets out of a house?!?  For the love of god, if you can’t afford the house, you don’t get to keep the cabinets as a parting gift.

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