V for Vendetta, with some holiday goodness on the snowy streets of downtown Seattle.
V for Vendetta, with some holiday goodness on the snowy streets of downtown Seattle.
Seattleites sledding down Denny using everything from real estate a-boards to garbage can lids on Capitol Hill Seattle blog.
I wasn’t able to get far out of my neighborhood due to weather conditions, but I did shoot some great shots of some kids and high-priced real estate, all covered in snow, with appropriate soundtrack by Dan Phillip.
The garage sale will be at Coldwell Banker Bain building, at 1661 E.
Olive Way in Seattle this weekend, downstairs in the garage, so it’s rain-or-shine. This is right across the street from B&O Espresso and there is free parking in the lot behind the building.
We are also accepting donations of unwanted items, if you want to help.
You can drop them off at our office at 1661 E. Olive Way or call our office at 206-322-8711 and either I or someone else from the office will do a pick-up.
The big garage sale is Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 13 & 14 from 10am until 4pm. I know this is a busy time right before the holiday’s, but the need is now and we wanted to help him as soon as possible.
With a country western beat….
According to this article in today’s Washington Post, the the Treasury Department met with representatives of the NAR a few weeks ago and told them that they are considering a plan to intervene directly in the mortgage industry to force down rates and stimulate the housing market.
A source said Treasury officials suggested at the meeting that the Realtors start a grass-roots campaign to press the mortgage rate plan with lawmakers.
This story comes on the tail of the NAR campaign for its Four Point Plan, an economic stimulus plan for the housing market.
Since Federal manipulation of the mortgage market is what poisoned the capital markets to begin with, I doubt any of these plans are sustainable and the additional interference only pushes back the day we finally reach bottom and start recovering.
I’ve often been suspicious of “grass roots” campaigns, and this is a case in point. By definition, grass roots movements can’t be dictated from the top down, and the Federal Treasury is about as high as one can get. The term implies that the creation of the movement and the group supporting it is natural and spontaneous, highlighting the differences between this and a movement that is orchestrated by traditional power structures like, in this case, the Federal Treasury. Jeez.
Yeah, I was a (tiny) stockholder, via my 20+ old investment club WIMPS (Women Investing for Money, Power & Success). I just received this email today from the President of the Puget Sound Chapter of Better Investing:
For those of you holding WaMu stock, the news is grim. On September 25th, the FDIC essentially declared WaMu insolvent and took control of it. WaMu could no longer roll-over its short-term debt to meet demands for cash from depositors and creditors. The bank will continue to operate under new ownership and your deposits, CDs, loans and credit cards will continue per their original agreement. But in order to prevent further damage to the financial system, the FDIC agreed to sell the deposits and certain liabilities of the bank to JPMorgan Chase & Co. This includes the branches which will eventually get labeled as JPMorgan Chase. The unsecured and senior debts and preferred shares of WaMu, totaling about $20 billion in value before-hand, are not being assumed by JP Morgan and thus are also worth very little, if anything. It is very rare for the government to take control of a corporation, and I think this is a testament to how tough the current times are, especially in the financial sector.
For stockholders in WaMu, it continues (probably very temporarily) under the symbol WAMUQ. Today it was trading at about 3.8 cents per share. I would take advantage of whatever liquidity is there to sell immediately. If it was held in a taxable (non-IRA) account, the tax-loss has greater economic value than the actual investment. You might use it to offset gains or regular income up to $3,000 this year, after discussions with your tax advisor, of course! You may also want to contact your broker to see if they will waive their commission fee; many will waive the fee when selling fractional shares or for holdings that are nearly worthless.
Lessons learned? First, the BetterInvesting tenant of diversification is critical. With luck, your lost WaMu investment wasn’t a large piece of your nest-egg. Next, please don’t underestimate the power of the PERT-A. The trends in profits and margins had been negative for WaMu for a long-time. Just deciding to “ride it out” under such conditions is like ignoring an EKG that shows a heart-murmur.
In my experience, the sooner you identify problematic trends in a holding, the better. At that point, if you can’t convince yourself that the problems are short-term and within the control of management, you’d better find safer pastures for your funds.
Dan Rutter, CFA
Associate Director, Puget Sound Chapter, BetterInvesting
Equal Rights Washington, a statewide political advocacy organization works to end discrimination against LGBT people throughout Washington State.
They recently sent out a letter urging people to “procott” companies who support LGBT rights. Not boycott those who don’t, but “procott” and support those who do.
From a recent email from Josh Friedes, Advocacy Director of Equal Rights Washington:
And after the Realtors PAC spent so much money trying to elect anti-equality candidate Dino Rossi, doesn’t it make sense to make sure you’re picking a real estate agent that supports LGBT civil rights?
Unfortunately, they are correct. Our local Seattle King County Association of Realtors DID support Republican and anti-equality candidate Dino Rossi, though I suspect it was more for his close ties to the building and commercial real estate industry than for anything else. He did actually hold a real estate license for a number of years, and I found this on Wikipedia:
In 1983, Rossi joined Capretto & Clark, a Seattle real estate firm, as a salesman. The firm filed for bankruptcy the following year and, in 1985, the Seattle Post-Intelligencer published a story on the federal corruption investigation into Capretto & Clark’s general manager, Melvin Heide. While many in the sales force left the firm, Rossi stayed behind and eventually followed Heide to Metropolitan Real Estate and, a month later, to Imperial Real Estate in downtown Seattle. Rossi said he had been unaware of the circumstances behind the collapse of Capretto & Clark, saying that he “didn’t take the paper.” He resigned from Imperial Real Estate in 1992.
Luckily he lost, and incumbant Christine Gregoire has another 4 years in office.
Though I am not a member of GSBA, I am a contributor to Equal Rights Washington. I was inspired and galvanized by the recent elections, but very disappointed about the outcome of Proposition 8 in California, so I attended a rally and march here in Seattle at Volunteer Park. I put together some photos and film clips with my trusty Flip and made this video:
Mayor Greg Nickles was there and made a proclamation, but King County Executive Ron Sims stole the show. Passionate and inspired, he galvanized the crowd with his rousing rhetoric, and he actually gets that LGBT rights are CIVIL rights. I’m working on his next campaign,what ever that will be.
From cars, to gas, and from banking to grocery stores this guide has it all:
Buying for Equality Buying Guide
For Seattle goods and services:
GSBA Buying Guide
CB Richard Ellis Group Inc. just landed one of the fattest real estate clients in recent history.
The Los Angeles-based global real estate services firm was just selected as a primary adviser for residential and commercial real estate assets the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. will acquire as it takes over failed banks.
The company said it will be responsible for managing and marketing residential and commercial properties held by the FDIC in its role as receiver for failed financial institutions.
As a result of the financial crisis, federal regulators have taken over 22 banks so far this year, the most since 1993
CBRE has subcontracted with a number of other partners on the FDIC account. The subcontractors include Realogy Corp. — parent company of Sotheby’s International Realty, Coldwell Banker, Century 21 and ERA — to service the residential real estate portion of the FDIC account.
Interestingly, Richard C. Blum, Chairman of CBRE is the husband of United States Senator from California Dianne Feinstein. Could this contract with the FDIC been arranged through her efforts and office? Just wondering.