Wednesday, July 02, 2008

U.S. HouseFlipper Laura Richardson Once a Real Estate Agent

From the Long Beach Press-Telegram:

U.S. Rep. Laura Richardson's housing woes - defaults in Long Beach and San Pedro, a foreclosure and unpaid property taxes in Sacramento - are well-documented.

What is less known is that the Long Beach Democrat once held a real estate license. The congresswoman was permitted to sell property in California from Dec. 16, 1998, to Dec. 15, 2002, state Department of Real Estate records show. In the late 1990s, Richardson worked for short periods of time at Action Century 21, 3626 E. Pacific Coast Highway, and Prudential California Realty (now Coldwell Banker), 1650 Ximeno Ave., agents at both offices say.

A spokesman for Richardson says she never took part in any real estate transactions.
From the Sacramento Bee:
Sacramento-area home values have an 82.2 percent chance of being lower two years from now, an improvement from previous rankings, Walnut Creek-based PMI Mortgage Insurance Co. reported Tuesday.
From the Sacramento Business Journal:
Hit hard by the housing slump and economic downturn, Sacramento furniture chain The Room Source has filed for reorganization under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code and will begin liquidating its inventory at all six locations with a court-ordered sale beginning Saturday. After several weeks, all the stores will close, according to the company conducting the sale. The retailer, which employs fewer than 200 people, began experiencing the slowdown two years ago, said Harris Blickstein, chief operating officer. People aren’t buying furniture, he said, because of fallout from the subprime mortgage bust, lower housing prices and higher gas prices.
From the Sacramento Land(ing) archives:
The Room Source isn't planning layoffs or cuts, he [Blickstein] said. Instead, "I may spend more ... on advertising." The Room Source can weather a slowdown; smaller, undercapitalized businesses may not, he said...
From the Modesto Bee:
An economy rocked by staggering fuel prices and a moribund housing market has claimed two more businesses -- Dan Gamel's RV Centers and RoomSource Furniture & Accessories...Gamel, who sold the company in 2005 and reacquired it early this year, said he has had trouble getting banks to lend him working capital.
...
Darrel Friesen, president of the California Recreation Vehicle Dealers Association, said RV sales in the state are down 40 percent from a year ago. He said fuel prices are partly to blame, and loans are harder to get because of declining home equity and tightened lending standards.
From the Sacramento Bee:
Elk Grove Ford, arguably the automaker's anchor dealership south of Sacramento, closed down operations early Friday evening in the Elk Grove Auto Mall...Keil Enterprises also recently closed its Great Valley Chrysler-Jeep-Mazda-Isuzu dealership at 2329 Fulton Ave. in Sacramento...[L]ocal auto dealer Paul Blanco announced in April that he was going to close Paul Blanco Chevrolet at 3815 Florin Road...Michael Barbieri, owner and manager of Auburn Nissan, said financial difficulties led to the closing of his dealership in Auburn on April 24.
...
"This is the reality of the harshness of the market right now," [Rick Niello, president of the Sacramento-based Niello Co]...said... "…It's like seeing a home in your neighborhood where your neighbors have left and the weeds are growing all around the place."
From the Lodi News Sentinel:
Plans to build Lodi's new drinking water treatment plant will not flow as fast as first thought, city leaders said Tuesday. That is because the $41 million plant's funding source — fees from new development — has largely dried up.
From the CVBT:
[F]or many of the first settlers, Mountain House has become a nightmare. Out of about 300 homes on the resale market in the community rising out of 4,800 acres of former ranches and farms near Tracy in the Central Valley, roughly 260 are in some state of foreclosure, according to the real estate website trulia.com.
From the Modesto Bee:
Consider it a consolation prize: Plummeting home values have cost Northern San Joaquin Valley homeowners billions in home equity, but at least their property taxes are going down..."The average assessment value decrease was $122,000, which was a shock to us," Stanislaus County Assessor Doug Harms said Monday.
...
The widespread decline in property assessments is unprecedented, causing total assessment rolls in the three counties to decline for the first time -- or at least as far back as records go.
From the Modesto Bee:
Hundreds of homeowners in Modesto and Patterson are late paying special property taxes, forcing the cities to begin a speedy foreclosure process for houses in newer subdivisions. The cities went through the same procedures last year when clusters of homeowners didn't pay Mello-Roos taxes they owe for growth-related effects such as roads and parks.
...
More than a fifth of what Patterson residents owe in Mello-Roos charges hasn't been paid, City Manager Cleve Morris said. That has cost the city about $1 million this year.

11 comments:

Bakersfield Bubble said...

The Room Source isn't planning layoffs or cuts, he [Blickstein] said. Instead, "I may spend more ... on advertising." The Room Source can weather a slowdown; smaller, undercapitalized businesses may not, he said...


________________________________


LMFAO!!!!

LAnder you rock!

Diggin Deeper said...

The big picture is getting uglier by the day and invariably will force Sacramento into a tough environment with regard to real estate. On the bright side our agricultural farms and businesses are booming. Unfortunately, they really don't make up as much of our local economy today as they did 20 years ago.

One of the big hangovers appears to be in the overbuilt service infrastructure that was created to service new homeowner demand that's just not there. No demand means fewer businesses needed, and it cascades from there.

Today we got the national jobs report down an additional 62,000 which is six consecutive months of decline. Drilling down one would see that number propped up by the Birth/Death model which added 177,000 jobs. This arbitrary "guess", based on new business starts/stops is a great way to make things look better then expected. Probaby one reason why we see upward revisions to previous job losses in later months.

Imo, we're just beginning a long slow grind in Sacramento and RE prices/buying activity will grind right along with it.

I've noticed lately that the CHP is more active on the highways setting up radar traps and pulling multiple cars over for ticketing...just a sign of the times?

Rich said...

"I've noticed lately that the CHP is more active on the highways setting up radar traps and pulling multiple cars over for ticketing...just a sign of the times?"

I suspect that's just the summer bounce. Just like RE, you'd have to look at the YoY numbers. I'm as (or more) cynical as the next guy, but I think the CHP isn't giving out tickets to make money so much as they are to save lives.

Patient Renter said...

"What is less known is that the Long Beach Democrat once held a real estate license."

I should have known. It all makes sense now. Why is it that so many Realtors became speculators? (I have a few friends who are renting from Realtors who never intended to be landlords...oh well)

Patient Renter said...

One of the big hangovers appears to be in the overbuilt service infrastructure that was created to service new homeowner demand that's just not there.

Yea, strip malls included. I'm constantly reminded how overbuilt commercial RE is. Everywhere I go it seems I can find mostly vacant strip malls, often brand new ones.

I think the CHP isn't giving out tickets to make money so much as they are to save lives.

I'm all for saving lives, but I don't see any problem with giving out tickets to generate revenue, as long as they're legitimate. Whatever motivates the CHP to enforce the law is fine by me.

Diggin Deeper said...

OT...

And with regard to our strong ag business....

With the dollar as weak as it is and inflation growing rapidly, I wonder how long it will take before our ag labor force decides there's not enough money paid to be able to survive picking fruits and vegetables in the US anymore? That would be a heck of a blow to prices if we were to lose that important resource.

Cmyst said...

Hey, all, LTNS :)
I had to chime in on the strip mall observations. Here in Rad Hills, there is a huge,ugly unfinished two or three story building in the town center area. There are largely untenanted finished commercial buildings all around that area, near the new Target and the movie theatre.
We rarely go over there, but we went to see "Hancock" last night. I dunno what they were thinking, with all this commercial space. It's downright depressing, and that unfinished building is a huge pimple on the tight rear end of EDH.
Meanwhile, up the hill a ways and out in the boonies near Diamond Springs and Pleasant Valley it seems like about 2/3 of the property up there is for sale now.

PeonInChief said...

It's most likely that the CHP and local traffic enforcement is doing a major push to enforce the new cell phone law. And some people haven't gotten the message...

sacramentia said...

The cell phone law isn't going to help, being mentally distracted doesn't change if you are holding the wheel with one hand or two.

PeonInChief said...

But they haven't developed a way to figure out if your distracted--well, until you run into the light pole and say "Officer, I was distracted."

James said...

There are largely untenanted finished commercial buildings all around that area, near the new Target and the movie theatre."

Try getting a lease there. Mansour is asking way too much for lease space, not willing to negotiate, making leases way to restrictive and difficult for small retailers. No property management company wants to even work for him. Until he changes, the space will remain empty.