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Foreclosure Watch: A Rising Tide of Misery

The Pacifica Tribune has been chronicling the growing problem of foreclosures in northern San Mateo County for some time now. But you'd have to look in the legals to see it. The paper accepts legal notices from Pacifica, Daly City, South San Francisco, San Bruno, and Brisbane.

Starting in the summer of 2007, the legals began lengthening in a way I'd never seen before. The weekly auction notices now stretch on for four-plus pages every Wednesday, dwarfing what's left of real estate ads.

How long will it be before the majority of real estate deals are foreclosures and/or banks selling houses they never wanted to own in the first place? In the Central Valley, that is already a reality.

In the chart below are numbers of auction notices in the Pacifica Tribune since July 2007. It is not complete, but you'll see the trend clearly enough.




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Just a ittle more detail on the sub-prime mess. This according to the chief economist at Lord Abbett: 1.2 Trillion in outstanding sub-prime mortgages. 13% are in bankruptcy, 20% are delinquent, 2/3 rds are current after an entire year. 1/3rd of 1.2 Trillion is 396 Billion. On average, these foreclosed homes sell for 40% of their previous mortgaged value. In rounded numbers, that equates to 160 billion in write-offs for sub prime debt. Currently, the entire banking industry has already written off 360 billion for these same loans. They do not believe Alt-A will be the next tsunami of write-offs. Sub prime is the real threat. These numbers give me a great deal of pause when hearing of the impending implosion of all real estate and all mortgages.

The count for other the cities is important but also the fact that many of the notices of default and trustee sales actually never go to sale. I have a property owned by someone who is deceased. He will never pay another payment. I have offers submitted since May 10, 2008. The bank just now responded that they might take the offer. No wonder things are in the mess that we are in. Maybe if they would have responded oh say in June, things would be in better shape. Meanwhile they are not making a dime on this.

One man's trash is another man's treasure... according to today's SF Chronicle, home sales are up with people (investors) purchasing foreclosed homes. Link to story below.


It's hard not to notice when most of Section 2 of your local paper is foreclosure notices. I look at them and feel really scared about the way the economy is going. This link also was upsetting. From the SF Gate: www.sfgate.com/webdb/foreclosures/

The south bay edition of the Business Journal has been reporting continually on this issue nation wide. 30% to 50% of houses being sold are bank owned. Short sales and "dumping" by auction seem to be the norm. As if to prove this normality there are organized bus tours of properties in foreclosure or for sale by banks through auctions every day across the country.

It matters. We are all suffering as a result whether through loss of equity or worse, loss of employment or loss of a home.

Unregulated free markets favor criminals not honest citizens.

I think Monkframe is a local picture framer. I've also wondered what all these foreclosure-related postings are about. Monkframe seems to take glee in the misery of those being foreclosed on.

The Modesto Bee is a good place to go for the disaster that is the Central Valley housing market.
The reporter I've been reading there is J.Sbranti. Frankly, the reporting has been shocking. Houses are, in some cases, worth nothing, zero, zilch.

Good job on the chart.

It would be useful to have a count of how many of these listings are Pacifica-specific, especially to compare to the trends county-wide. That would require sifting through the text of each notice to find the address of the property listed.

I believe all the Tribunes going back many years are available on Microfiche at the libraries. Perhaps Riptide could fund a young journalism intern (with good eyesight) to look through and count them.

Isn't Monk a TV program, and what are you trying to say? The Tribune is trying to make a buck to stay in business and bring us all the news and nothing but the news? Or, maybe, why don't you grab a copy of the Modesto Bee and peruse they're notices. They post lots of obits in the Chronicle. What conclusion would you draw from that?

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