Thursday, January 10, 2008

Fire

From KCRA:

Homeowners may see a new fee to cover firefighting costs under a proposal in the new state budget...Homeowners would each see an increase of about $10 to $12 in insurance each year.
...
Even though it's a small fee, some are opposed to another fee for something people are already taxed on. "I don't think increasing any fees in a declining market is a good idea," homeowner Karin Libbee said. "People are struggling to pay their mortgages."
From Fortune:
With the national foreclosure rate zooming and the real estate market in a two-year funk, the insurance industry fears more homeowners will see arson as a way out of their financial woes.
...
Allstate spokesman Mike Siemienas says his company has seen an increase nationally in arsons among homes in foreclosure. In California, the state's insurance division reports that the number of questionable residential fires in 2007 increased 76 percent over 2006.

8 comments:

Jacob said...

so how does arson actually solve your problem (assuming you get away with it)?

You bought a home for 500k and not its worth 300k so you burn it down. Now it only has a replacement value of say 250k so the insurance company has a new home built for you. You still owe the bank 500k...

The little fees do add up, but anything that is like $1/month like this fee, that is for police or fire department is fine by me.

Sippn said...

You know, if fire districts had some sort of oversite other than the union shills they vote in. . .

I'd rather look more closely at the compensation/ retirement/ bene program, the capital investment program and perhaps the SUV and helicopter budgets.

Now days fire departments are mostly admistration instead of fire fighters.

Why do we have to house and feed them? put them all on a schedule similar to law enforcement - I know it might inconvenience their other business schedules. . .

Jacob said...

Or stop the bs overtime games they play in the last year they work before retiring...

Diggin Deeper said...

Thanks to the media, I smell smoke! Why give those looking to get out any ideas. They're already stealing the appliances, bathroom hardware, and anything else of value as they part with their keys. Why didn't the media just come out and say, the way to do this is to pump up the content portion of your insurance as high as allowed, torch the place, and walk away with small nest egg to start over with.

I agree with you Sippn...There's no reason to have those 24-48 hour "party" shifts. If you have to hunker down, the perks should be the first things to go.

Diggin Deeper said...

Billiary proposes a $70 Billion Stimulus Package.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20080111/ts_nm/usa_politics_clinton_economy_dc_4

This ought to reduce area firefights.

Merrill seen suffering $15 billion loss: report

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20080111/bs_nm/merrill_losses_dc_2

The finanacial are letting us down nice and easy...doesn't seem like there's any end in sight.

The only things en fuego are precious metals, soft commodities...corn, wheat, sugar, and soybeans, along with most currencies. All in response to Big Ben's forthcoming new money drop on the economy. I'm maintaining that one of these sessions, short term fed fund rates will get slashed dramatically, and the 10 year treasury will move just as dramatic in the opposite direction to account for the added inflation the new liquidity brings. It would finally signal a complete disconnect between the Fed and the financial markets.

siflsockpuppet said...

Am I nuts? I'm actually thinking of buying. PITI for a 30 year fixed 80% loan on $230k house is now cheaper than my rent on a smaller house. Other than prices that might decline another 10% before they recover, tell me why I'm crazy.

Diggin Deeper said...

"Other than prices that might decline another 10% before they recover, tell me why I'm crazy."

It depends. How long you plan on owning the home? If you're time horizon is long (8-10 years) and you don't care about housing appreciation, it probably works for you. If you're stable in your job and able to withstand economic downturns, why not? If you're betting that another 10% in price decreases will be about the extent of the declines, you'll easily pick that up in tax breaks if you live in the home long enough. If the assumptions you make add up and fall into place, then you're not crazy at all.

Everybody's situation is different. Interest rates, however low they are today, may not remain low in the future. I doubt that rates this year will be lower this time next year, but no one knows for sure.

I'm not a buyer until we see two quarters of prices that have either moved up or remain steady over that period of time. Even then, there's no guarantee the bottom is in. The trick is not to lose money over the ownership time horizon you've given yourself.

Gwynster said...

Sock,

The main reason I'd lay off buying is because we're just now heading into the auction season which starts next month.

I had started to grump a little myself about wanting to finally jump in and then I double checked the big auction houses. Currently starting bids are roughly 50% of what opening bids were last year. - wow! Even if the lenders don't take the offers that shows how low we still have to go.