----------------------------------------------- */ ----------------------------------------------- */ ----------------------------------------------- */ ----------------------------------------------- */ ----------------------------------------------- */ ----------------------------------------------- */ The Fabulous Adventures of Astera: Writer/Actress for Hire: Worth Checking Out

The Fabulous Adventures of Astera: Writer/Actress for Hire

Meet Astera (aka: me), a star in her own mind. Our plucky little heroine has embarked on not one but two difficult, low-paying career paths: writing and acting. Witness the menial jobs! The unreasonable demands! The quirky friends and family! And the glimmer of success just ahead! Through it all, Astera maintains her core beliefs: 1) She is destined to be fabulous 2) Everything is more fun with a cocktail.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Worth Checking Out

There is a blog out there that is all about the real estate bubble in my home county...The Marin Real Estate Bubble.

I am taking real estate classes and I have had an opportunity to speak with several real estate agents, and this whole bubble idea is pretty crazy. On the one hand, I hope there is a bubble that bursts soon. That's the only way I'll be able to afford a home in this area. On the other hand, I hope prices don't get driven down too far, because my parents plan to sell their home in a year or so, and I hope to be the agent on that sale, thus earning a hefty commission.

Honestly, I do think that prices are out of control here, particularly in the "entry-level" segment. There is a condo for sale in the development where we rent. It is a two-bedroom, one-bath with a one-car detached garage, exactly the same floor plan as the one we rent. It is listed for $489,000, and it will probably sell for close to $500,000. That's half a million dollars for a condo that's probably less than 1,000 square feet. Most people who live in this development have converted their garages to living space or storage space because the units are just too small! I think it's outrageous. Homeowner's fees are something like $285 a month. That makes our rent look mighty sweet in comparison to what a mortgage payment would be. No, we're not building any equity, but I don't think these places are going to hold their value for more than another year or two, so it's no great loss.

People across the country (well, except for those in NYC) are probably laughing at us Californians. "Fixer-uppers" in my neighborhood, ones that are more than 50 years old and need serious work, are selling for more than $600,000. Crazy, I say. And those people who have negative-amortization loans (the last resort for people whose adjustable-rate mortgages have adjusted upward to more than they can afford) are probably going to end up owing more than their houses are worth in a few years. I am already reading stories about people with adjustable-rate mortgages who have seen their monthly payments balloon 60 percent or more.

But a lot of people say there is no bubble. Well, I don't think prices can keep going up forever. It's just a law of physics. You know: gravity. However, I'm hoping for a "soft landing." If not, the economy will just be worse off than it is now. And I don't think any of us want that.


  • At 3:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Thanks for the article on Marin Real Estate I don't necessarily believe in the bubble, but I do think prices have come full circle and have needed to find some balance. The one thing I can say is those who buy now, will more than likely double their money in ten years. Thanks again.


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