Lying to Exploit Fear

Liar — Queen

Liar I have drunk the wine (or kool aid)
Liar time after time

Not long ago, we had a realtor trolling the forums. He tried all the standard hooks, but he found those fish were not biting. One of the more ridiculous ideas he put out there was the notion, “You can’t predict which way the market will go, so you should buy.” WTF? Anyone with half a brain or any amount of investment experience would know the old truism, “When in doubt, stay out.” Beyond that the remark is stupid for another reason: it is pretty obvious that the market is going to go down. The decline has momentum, we are entering a recession, and prices are still greatly inflated.

Realtors thrive by creating fear in buyers. They will use lines like:

  • It is a good time to buy!
  • Hurry. This one won’t last.
  • Don’t throw away your money on rent.
  • If you are serious, you had better buy now or you might be priced out of the market.
  • They are not making land anymore.
  • If you see a property you love, you really need to make an offer.
  • The more earnest money you put down, the more seriously your offer is taken.
  • Things have been a bit slower than last year, but the last two weeks we have seen a lot more traffic.
  • Rates are at all time lows and buyers have more choice than ever!
  • Rates are creeping up, so you better get in now.
  • If you wait until the bottom, you will miss out on getting a property that you really like.
  • This property is priced at below market value.
  • Incentives this good won’t be available after…
  • Don’t worry about the asking price – just offer what you’re willing to pay.
  • Don’t worry. You can afford this house.
  • I will show my client the offer, but I just want to let you know that we have another offer for more coming in this afternoon.
  • Trust me.
  • It’s not just the commission. I really care about you.

In a buyer’s market these ploys are all lies (the truthfulness of these statements is questionable in all market conditions). Don’t believe them.

Liar liar liar liar
Liar that’s what they keep calling me

Do not forget that when you are buying a house, the realtor is the agent of the seller. The primary responsibility of the realtor is to serve his client by obtaining the greatest possible purchase price. The realtor may be nice and disarming, and you might honestly believe they have your best interests at heart. They don’t. In a perfect world (for them) they would lead you to believe they are looking out for you while they are extracting as much money out of you as possible. That way, you will be inclined to use them again when it is your turn as a seller to get as much as possible from your buyer.

Realtors are paid to say the things that would make you cringe with a straight face and a smile. That is how they get that extra few percent out of buyers that justifies their existence. Sellers pay them to say all of the things in the list above for one simple reason: it works. Buyers fall for it, almost every time. Financial manias are not enabled by realtors presenting rational arguments and objective advice. Housing bubble psychology is exploited by realtors to sell homes. That is their job.

When I sold my home before moving to California, I used a realtor. When it is my turn to sell a home here in California, I may do the same. If I find someone who I believe will get me at least 4% more in a sales price than I could on my own, I will hire them. I just won’t be there when they go into their sales pitch. My facial expression would give me away…

Today’s featured property is in the Northwood II neighborhood. The stress of the low end is working its way up to this next tier of the housing market. This one is going for less than $300/SF.

53 Bombay Kitchen

Asking Price: $750,000IrvineRenter

Income Requirement: $187,500

Downpayment Needed: $150,000

Monthly Equity Burn: $6,250

Purchase Price: $898,500

Purchase Date: 3/28/2005

Address: 53 Bombay, Irvine, CA 92620

Beds: 4
Baths: 3
Sq. Ft.: 2,630
$/Sq. Ft.: $285
Lot Size:
Property Type: Condominium
Style: Other
Year Built: 2005
Stories: 2
Floor: 1
Area: Northwood
County: Orange
MLS#: S555878
Source: SoCalMLS
Status: Active
On Redfin: 1 day

New Listing (24 hours)

Spacious upgraded home with one bedroom and full bath downstairs.
Hardwood flooring, granite countertops, private yard. Great interior
location. Four bedrooms and master retreat plus den. Over 2600 sq. ft.
of living space. Located in the gated community of Northwood II.
Assciation offers pool,spa,clubhouse. Just a short walking distance to
shopping and restaurants.

Assciatio? That description is 55 words, and they can’t spell them all correctly.

This property was purchased on 3/28/2005 for $898,500. The owners used a $718,562 first mortgage, a $137,500 HELOC, and a $42,438 downpayment (It is possible the HELOC wasn’t used to purchase and the downpayment was $179,938). On 6/7/2006, they refinanced with a $749,000 first mortgage, and opened a $111,000 HELOC. On 7/28/2006 they opened a $200,000 HELOC. If the final HELOC was used, the total debt on the property is $949,000. That would also be its peak appraised value.

If this property sells for its asking price, the total loss on the property will be $193,500 after a 6% commission. The actual loss to the lender would be $244,000 if the HELOC is maxed out.

This property is being offered for 16% off its 2005 purchase price, and 22% off its peak appraised value.

So can you think of any realtor ploys I have missed?


I have sinned dear Father Father I have sinned
Try and help me Father
Won’t you let me in? Liar
Nobody believes me Liar
Why don’t they leave me alone?
Sire I have stolen stolen many times
Raised my voice in anger
When I know I never should
Liar oh ev’rybody deceives me
Liar why don’t you leave me alone

Liar I have sailed the seas
Liar from Mars to Mercury
Liar I have drunk the wine
Liar time after time
Liar you’re lying to me
Liar you’re lying to me
Father please forgive me
You know you’ll never leave me
Please will you direct me in the right way
Liar liar liar liar
Liar that’s what they keep calling me
Liar liar liar

Liar — Queen

67 thoughts on “Lying to Exploit Fear

  1. granite

    Don’t worry, Susan researched it. (My favorite video)

    They are not making land anymore.

    The realtor with Blue Pacific was so condescending to me and my wife as he said this that it made us angry.

    1. Robert

      “If you really want such a discount maybe you should be looking in the Inland Empire”

      boy.. that one really pissed me off and made me want to offer more to show the realtor I AM worthy and I DO have the money to afford such a house.

  2. Larrygg

    This property is still about $150K to $200K overpriced. It takes a large down payment, salary and commitment to take on this sort of financial burden. These people are still living in the past. I do believe that this housing market will take 3 to 4 years to recover because that’s how long it will take for people to realize that current house prices are out of touch with reality.

  3. Emma Anne

    This area is different. Prices won’t go down much here because ___. (University town, near the beach, the bubble didn’t blow up much here, near tech firms, etc.)

  4. zoiks

    “You can’t predict which way the market will go, so you should buy.“

    I personally know three realtors. Out of the three, I’d say one is a truly honest agent. Of course, he left the business four years ago do do something else. Of the remaining two, I got:

    “You better buy something now (in Irvine) because prices are just going to go up and you’ll never be able to afford anything.”


    “You just can’t time the market.”

    The one that left the business a few years ago never tried any of those tactics and was himself skeptical of the bubble pricing.

    What I’ve learned in the last few years is that the real estate market can indeed be predicted. With my crystal ball I predict that next month will see another 1-2% monthly drop in the Case-Shiller national indices.

  5. zoiks

    Have you done the Peter Gabriel yet, IR?

    “But not me, I’m smarter than that,
    I worked it out
    I’ll be stretching my mouth to let those big words come right out”
    [ like assciototaoci ]

    Of course, after the pergraniteel, we can add

    “when I show them ’round my house to my bed
    I had it made like a mountain rage with a snow white pillow for my big fat head”

    “And my [foreclosure] will be a big [foreclosure], and I will walk through the front door”


  6. Transplant

    Your investment truism is great, but remember that houses aren’t merely potential investments. Is my house down from when I bought it a year ago? Yes. Do I care? No. Why? I needed a bigger house so the kid could have some space. I’m not planning on selling until she’s out of high school in 20 years, so by then the property will either be at or above what I paid for it. Sure, maybe I could have better invested my money elsewhere (mattress, hole in ground, shorting stocks…), but we all need places to live.

    But as for realtor lies, my favorite is from the Simpsons.

    Lionel Hutz: You know our slogan “The right house for the right person.” Well, the right house is the one for sale. The right person is anyone…

    1. blah

      It’s nice that you plan on living in the house for 20 years, but heck even I don’t know where I’ll be next year. You absolutely cannot assume that far into the future. You bought at a very dangerous time. Could you sustain the mortgage payments for 1 year without a job? If you lost your job tomorrow and couldn’t, then you may go into foreclosure and ruin your credit because you will owe more on your mortgage on the sale.

      1. Gray

        blah is right, such longterm planning was a good idea in the past, but not anymore. Economy has changed, there aren’t secure jobs anymore anywhere, and you have to stay reasonable flexible to cope with eventualities. Unless you already retired, of course…

    2. bigmoneysalsa

      You should care. You had a choice; you could have rented a bigger place instead of buying. Sometimes I think the lies realtors tell people to get them to buy, while despicable, pale in comparison to the lies people tell themselves to justify bad decisions.

    3. Walter

      I myself am waiting.

      But there are houses for sale out there at prices that approach a reasonable valuation in today’s market. A year ago, unlikely, but just maybe he did not over pay to badly.

      If the economy bottoms out in the next year, and he keeps his job, and he got a house below market, and he gets full value of the write off, and …
      He should be OK.

      Bit risky for me, but I would stop short of bashing him.

      Plus there is the option he, or his family, has lots of money and losing some of it is not a big deal.

      1. Transplant

        Well, I should point out that I sold my old house at a hefty profit, rolled all that cash into the new house, and only borrowed about half of what they would have loaned me, so my D/I ratio is under 20. Yes, I could have rented more, but why? Just to have some place bigger? Bigger is not always better. I like the mortgage tax deduction too. But all that aside, I think you first two both missed my point. My point was that a house isn’t just an investment, its a place to live and there is utility beyond any profit or loss on the property itself. Houses are first and foremost places to live. The investment aspects are secondary. If people kept that in mind then maybe people would have some personal restraint in their purchases and would actually be able to save on top of their mortgage payments.

        Moving in to rant mode, people who we read about here who use the HELOCs for cash machines make me sick. I for one would love if all those mortgages had personal recourse so those people can be pursued by the banks. If anything, I find flippers more worthwhile persons because at least they should know that its an investment and that it thus has downside risk (like my 401(k)). Rant off.

        Oh, and to answer “blah”, I have about 15 months of living expenses in cash now, so I’m not that worried about sudden calamity. Yes, losing my job would suck and its certainly more likely today than a year ago, which is why I have more cash than I did a year ago.

        All that said, if you’re renting now (or were a year ago), stay out until you are personally comfortable. Your odds of hitting the exact bottom are low, but the recovery will be slow, meaning it won’t be a sudden escalation of price.

        1. Walter

          Sounds like you are in a good position and it is very unlikely you will be forced into a bad situation. I do understand renting is not the same as owning. I rent now and I wish I could make the place more to my liking, but there is no point in a rental.

          That said, I am not waiting so much as to try and play the `investment` play, but more because I am concerned about losing a large amount of money if I were to buy and then found myself in a situation where I needed to sell. In the next 1 to 2 years, I hope the most of the downside is in the market and I can finally get the benefits of owning.

          1. Transplant

            Reasonable concerns given the market and now the economy. If the market drags along the bottom for awhile, then if you buy and it drops 2% (not 20%) in a year and you have to sell, that would stink but it wouldn’t necessarily be catastrophic vis-a-vis renting.

  7. Jill

    Ahh… Realtors. I could write a book. I’ve been a real estate attorney for 17 years. In that time I’ve met/”worked” with (they avoid actual work like the Plague) hundreds of realtors. With the exception of a handful (that’s right, 5) – they are the most willfully stupid, crass, selfish, deceitful group of people I’ve ever known.
    They lie all the time. I can’t tell you how many times I’d get a frantic or angry call from someone on a transaction (commercial or residential) – saying – “so and so Realtor said you wouldn’t let them buy/sell/close/sign/give me their first born”. They would literally make up lies to get to the only point in the transaction they cared about- cashing their check.
    They would actively avoid any actual assistance in this endeavor and always impeded the process by, you guessed it, lying.
    Maybe I should write a book.
    My favorite example is a broker who was “selling” 5 luxury condo units in Boston. They were priced between 1.9 and 5 million. You do the math on her commission.
    She started making promises to the buyers about a radon report. It was not in the agreement and I told her so. She said “don’t worry, I’m just smoothing them over”. The client (seller/developer) and I agreed I’d stay out of it.
    Guess what the buyer asked for at the closing table? (Radon report)
    Guess where the broker was? (not there, had promised to be there, not reachable at any number).
    Guess who dealt with it? (that’s right, the lawyers)
    Guess who got paid $100,000 at that closing? (here’s a hint- it wasn’t the lawyers).

    /Rant off.

    1. Walter

      I am in the process of getting my license. Mostly for handling family transactions.

      As far a helping people outside the family, I am getting the feeling there is no place for an honest, helpful RE agent. You will be steamrollered by the aggressive, do what ever it takes types.

      Is that your experience?

      1. Jill

        Walter – if you are at all diligent and intelligent you will be head and shoulders above 99% of the realtors I’ve come in contact with. A good realtor (and there are some) is worth his/her weight in gold.

        Good luck!

    2. MalibuRenter

      I know a realtor who is a frustrating hybrid. He is successful and really does know just about everything regarding his target neighborhood. Name a person or describe a house and he knows who owned it and approximately when. There is a good chance he sold the house at one point or another. Will actually tell you the problems or unique advantages of the house.

      But, he’s still always trying to get the highest price for the seller. When he describes things, they seem more clean and shiny. It seems like more things are possible and good. It feels like you shouldn’t worry, because money is for enjoyment. He seems sincere on that point. It’s like a worldview instead of a lie for him.

    3. SacBoomer

      You bring up one of life’s lessons. In my first two purchases, I ended up dealing with lawyers, due to sloppy or dishonest realtors. The last time around, (1989) we skipped the realtor & worked directly with a lawyer. I negotiated a price about $20,000 less than “market”, and paid a reasonable hourly rate for actual work that benefitted me. The seller got the amount they would have gotten anyway, and agreed that they likewise benefited.

    4. tlc8386

      too bad you didn’t call the bum and say you want this deal to go through give me a few percent–

      why should they make the money and you do the work—
      disgusting –big time

  8. Soylent Green Is People

    Sure, there are honest Realtards out there. Honest mortgage lenders (I’d like to think I’m one…) and if you look hard enough, honest used car salesment.

    First the pet peeve vent: when a Realtard says “I looked at the closing statement and your fees are too high”….Most LO’s make $1000 per deal or so and the Realtard makes $25,000. Pot, met kettle.

    If a strict flat commission fee of X (1 to 2%)on all sales were enforced, we’d get rid of the bad actors and retain those Realtors who want to make this profession a career. Trust me, Agents can survive on 1-2% max. Anyone who says otherwise is simply confused about their importance in the marketplace. Two homes a month at an average of price of $400k means a $16kpm income at a 2% cap. Is that kind of income going to lead to food stamp assistance? Hardly.

    “But i’ve got marketing expenses….” Who cares? You can have all the marketing in the world but if you still can’t spell granite in your listing and take crappy photos on top of mispricing properties then marketing ain’t your biggest problem.

    “But I’ve got assistants to pay…” perhaps fewer people in the “biz” will streamline the process. At an assumed $16kpm income level, you can do some of the work yourself, can’t you?

    I could rant on, but I’ve burped up enough bile about Realtards for the day.

    My .02


  9. Chuck

    Does anyone know if there is a way to list your home on the MLS without using a realtor? I’ve see a link on this blog for this type of service but it seems to just be for the state of Florida. Part of the probelm doing a for sale by owner is getting enough exposure, but if there is a cheap way to get on the MLS then I’m sure I could write a better description and take better photos than most realtors….

    1. Soylent Green Is People

      In this day and age you don’t always need to have your home on the MLS. You can Craigslist the home and offer 3% to the buyers REALTOR who will simply do all of the paperwork for you. If you see a home that is in escrow in your neighborhood ask to speak to the buyers Agent. Any Buyers Agent has more than one buyer able to purchase.

      My .02


    2. IrvineRealtor

      Chuck – several services pitch themselves as MLS data entry-only and sounds like what you’re looking for. You can do this through them or choose any broker and negotiate your terms.
      Type “mls data entry only” in google and you’ll have a big selection to choose from.

  10. Fermi Pyle

    Remember that BOTH the seller and buyer realtors’ commissions are being paid by the seller. I thought “my” realtor’s focus on the house I bought was because it was a great deal for me. But in the final papers I saw that he received 5 percent commission on that house instead of the standard even split of 3 percent. A great deal indeed!

  11. 306

    Great post on the Realtor. Everybody I know who was unemployable during the last 8 years became a RE agent. As first I wondered how someone that was not qualified to be a waiter or busboy could assist in the largest purchase of a lifetime. They truly do not care about buyer, seller, lender, families, etc. They only care about 1 thing…the commission check. RE agent is the most un-needed person on earth, a worthless 6% line item on closing contract.

    1. dafox

      I couldnt agree more. Either RE agent or a Loan Officer.
      I remember doing IT work for a number of loan shops filled with guys who looked like they couldnt pass the GED – yet they were making significantly more money than I was, with 10yrs of experience in an actual technical field!

      I think they’re all Fuel Transfer Engineers now (aka: pumping gas)

    2. tlc8386

      totally agree–quality of life in Irvine is a box with zero lot line–so you live in the box and can hear your neighbors–oh that’s right the Great Park–there is your green land–LOL

  12. Barren_Irvine

    The list is very true. I was once asked by a agent to get in now because once the rates go up I will be only able to borrow 350K instead of 400K. I told him that I would be happy with 350K. He did not like my answer.

    Also I would like to add another item to the list that was quoted by one of the agent during bubble. “Prices in orange county is never going down”. Oh well, I guess she is shopping at dollar store for Christmas this year.

  13. bankownedrenter

    I wont’ be very surprised that this house was purchased by IAC executive on phase one from builders on 2003 and sold on 2005.
    It’s a secret and a lot of lies on how phase one and two were determined during 2003-2004 period, especially this community.
    IAC itself is OC biggest flipper of this housing bubble.

  14. Chris M

    I just got my new property tax assessment, and it’s down 10%. That should save me about $1,000 next year! We bought this house new in ’04, so conventional wisdom would say that I’m probably screwed. But we bought it for shelter, not investment. My mortgage is fixed at $1,340/month, which is less than my weekly paycheck. Back in ’04, I was so sickened by the 6% commissions, that we bought this house planning to live in it for 15 years or more. Other people I knew were bouncing around from one house to another back then, and all I could think of was 6%, 6%, 6%. Cha-ching, Cha-ching, Cha-ching! That seemed like a waste to me, so I wanted to make sure we’d be happy with this house for a long time. We got into the good school district, so my kids get that benefit for the next 9 and 12 years. We got 4,100sqft on 1/3 acre, so we won’t be hurting for space. The property taxes are stupid high, but now that’s dropping too. I honestly can’t believe they lowered my assessment. I didn’t ask for it or anything. This is like a form of stimulus. Now I could make improvements to my home, and the taxes would stay level. I sure would like some Pergranit in my kitchen. No stainless ‘teel appliances though. I like my white GE stuff. You’d think the countertop and flooring places would be having 1/2 off sales right now, but that doesn’t seem to be the case.

  15. DAve

    Actually realtors need to be more clever and subtle by saying things like
    “prices like these won’t last”

    which is certainly true but perhaps not so clear???

    1. QualityPicks

      They are right! prices like the ones we have won’t last! … because they are very expensive and they are going down real fast 🙂

  16. dafox

    Why wouldnt a buyers agent go on a flat fee? Wouldnt that prove that they actually can give proper feedback and it not be biased?

    I think someone who did that would actually do quite well with the informed buyers (maybe there just arent many of those).

  17. rentermom

    Realtors would go far if they could just be honest.
    One said to me OH I hate Zillo–I said it’s great for consumers, the same one that said oh I didn’t see missing tiles on that roof, make a offer and we can get them to fix anything you want. REALLY they will do that if I make a offer. They are scum–all of them. I doubt I’ll buy a house here in CA. The majority of CA is fed from the fraudulent CA market.What will Arnold do? LOL

    1. Mallen

      Received a call from my “banker” today. They were soliciting me to refinance my house at 5.75% with no points. I said, but it’s a jumbo, they said no problem that is now the new conforming. I said my property value has dropped and they said no problem we can go up to 90% of value.

      1. Mallen

        Full-page insert in this Sunday’s LA Times newspaper was from Wells Fargo. One side of it was advertising 90% refinancing at low interest rates. The other side was advertising purchase loans at 3% down and that the 3% down could be a gift.

        So those of you who want to believe that there is no financing available and that you need 20% down can go on thinking that. But the truth is there is plenty of money available at low rates and low downs if you have good credit. If you have bad credit then that is a different story.

        1. Mallen

          Just got this from the mortgage broker who did the loan on the last rental I purchased.

          Mortgage Rates Dropping to Lowest Rates in Modern History due to Fed and Treasury Actions!

          The U.S. Government and Treasury this week began buying Mortgage Backed Securities directly from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Investors appreciate the “Guarantee” of the Government`s backing, and as a result, Investors are coming back in to the market, and rates are being PUSHED DOWN!

          30 yr fixed rates are in the low to mid 5% range (5.25% – 5.75%) for conventional loans, and FHA-VA are down as well!

          The Fed and Treasury have invested directly in to the major banks, and seem to be pressuring and encouraging the Banks to modify mortgages to PREVENT FORECLOSURES and Short Sales!

          Buyers are back! Refinances are surging! Inventory is probably tightening up as a result of reduced foreclosures and short sales.

          Now, there is talk of additional Fed Actions to drive rates even lower! Watch for news from the Treasury Department in the coming days! We are very excited to pass on this good news to you!

          1. Mallen

            So, am I saying this is the time to buy? No I’m not. I don’t have a crystal ball.

            But I’m saying baloney to all the examples of how much money you need for the 20% down. I’m saying baloney to all the talk about resets. What difference do resets make, unless someone was doing interest only or negative amortization, if interest rates are reaching all time lows. And I’m saying baloney to those who say there isn’t any mortgage money out there.

          2. WaitingToBuyByAndBy

            Mallen, I find your post ironic.

            Here, IR is posting about how realtors lie and you are presenting information suggesting “purchase loans at 3% down and that the 3% down could be a gift.”

            That is however a lie.

            I believe you will find the 3% down is for FHA-only loans and yet the allowance for gifted funds are for non-FHA loans.

            Why do I say such things? Well, correct me if I’m wrong, but FHA no longer allows down payment assistance programs as of October 1st of this year.

            Has Wells Fargo lied to you?

            Since they have clearly misled you (and probably others who would arrive at the same logical conclusion), I would say they have intentionally lied. Still, in a court of law I’m sure it can be proven if you examine the advertisement carefully, you will find they are advertising loan “features” and not a single loan with both of these features.

            It would be easy to prove me wrong, all it takes is for anybody in the U.S. to get one of these purchase loans, visit this blog, and throw egg in my face. I would be truly happy wipe the egg from my eyes to discover the return of 100% financing (which is really what down payment assistance programs like gifted funds do). Maybe there is a loophole somewhere and I’m about to be pelted.

            It is fair to say the recent interaction from the Treasury has artificially dropped mortgage interest rates. This seems to me an attempt to force mortgage activity to fake everybody into thinking that housing has finally rebounded so we can all pretend like its over. I would even agree that I’ve heard the loan-to-value ratio has reached 90% for some loans (meaning a down payment of only 10% and not the safer, saner 20% IR assumes).

            However, I would challenge anybody who has secured a purchase loan for less than 5% down payment for a non-FHA loan (or even 3% down for an FHA loan) to come here and let me have it. Tell me how little skin you have in the game with your December 2008 purchase loan.

            The truth is, everybody is lying: The realtors, the banks, heck, even the Treasure if you really think about what they are saying and what they are actually doing.

          3. WaitingToBuyByAndBy


            You know what. I just took another look at the FHA press release on DPA, and it does appear that only the seller-assisted down payments are prohibited.

            Pelt at will.

          4. Bitter Renter

            The way I read Mallen’s description of that ad was that it was promoting the idea of older relatives gifting someone the (relatively affordable, compared to 20%) 3% downpayment for an FHA-conforming loan.

            (BTW, I was confused why that wasn’t 3.5%, but reportedly the minimum downpayment increase from 3% to 3.5% that was scheduled for 2008-10-01 got pushed back to 2009-01-01.)

          5. WaitingToBuyByAndBy

            Hi Mallen,

            I took a look at the website. It is as you said. I aplogize to you and to Wells Fargo.

            Also, I indicated it was the recent meddling of the Treasury (misspelled) that resulted in lower mortgage rates. That should be “The Fed”. The Treasury is simply considering manipulating mortgage rates.

  18. Bitter Renter

    “Assciatio”? IR, you misspelled the word wrong in your spelling flame. 🙂

    With regards to “They are not making land anymore”, I thought the traditional form of that was “They are not making any more land”. That wording can account for the fact that “they” were never making land in the first place. Either way, though, I don’t think it’s fair to call that statement a lie, when it comes to Irvine and most central O.C. cities, where there isn’t *that* much land left not designated to open space or other uses where new housing development can be done.

    Not to say there’s no developable land left, of course — just that all things considered, dwindling remaining areas for development do favor buying sooner rather than later. Of course shrinking lot sizes may be a larger effect than rising prices, when it comes to that.

  19. Laura Louzader

    Re the commenter whose real estate agent didn’t want to make a lowball offer for fear of “insulting” the seller…

    I had this experience, with amusing results. In 2004, I was set to make an offer on a condo here in Chicago, a rehabbed 4-room one-bed in my Rogers Park neighborhood. It was asking $139K. Well, just 2 years previous, a substantially similar but much more attractive place sold for $110K.

    When I told my agent to offer $110K, she looked at me aghast. I mean, but the poor woman just went to pieces! Her lips began to quiver and her eyes appeared to be tearing. With a trembling voice, she said, “oh,honey, I just CAN’T make an offer like that. That is ridiculous. It would offend the agent and she might not work with me again, “and on and on, until she finally said, “Honey, I just can’t work with you anymore.” She turned me over to another agent rather than submit my offer.

    Now, I’m not sure it was legal of her to refuse to submit my offer, for my understanding is that ALL offers must be presented to the seller. However, I’m glad she did, for the VERY SAME UNIT is languishing on the market at $85K… and I don’t want it anymore. It never was my first choice, and now I’m going for my first choice, for the price I think it’s really worth. So she saved me from making a bad choice.

    1. SacBoomer

      “I don’t want to make a low ball offer and run the risk of providing the “seller” with a realistic sense of what the actual value of their property is, they might not want to work with me again…”

  20. Dick Chaney

    Dick and Jill went up the hill to catch a little nap…umm, I took a dump on all your mortgages and the entire economy, my balls have decreased in value by 22%, so kiss my gay daughters ass….

  21. Crayz

    I find that you have to go through several realtors before you can find someone that you can trust. My last realtor actually did a lot of the work. He showed up at the house several times to let people in. He even offered to pay for the house to get cleaned b/c he didn’t want the buyer to start off with a dirty house.

    With that being said, I went through three other realtors before I found him. I generally despise the entire industry b/c they do lie. In fact, it almost seems that the more successful you are, the more you have to lie.

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