Property Grunt

Monday, November 30, 2009

This is not going to go over very well.

Professor advises underwater homeowners to walk away from mortgages

Professor advises underwater homeowners to walk away from mortgages
Brent T. White, a University of Arizona law school professor, says that it's in the homeowners' best financial interest to stiff their lenders and that it's not immoral to do so.

What do I think? I will let you know later this week.

The Brooklyn Flea comes to Manhattan

I was walking around the West Village and came across this most amazing site.

The Brooklyn Flea in Manhattan!
This used to be Tower Video which was behind Tower Records and across from Tower Books. It is also the same location where Britney Spears used to live or maybe she still lives there? Did they ever sell that apartment?

Anyways, I was happy to see it blooming with grassroots entrepreneurial activity instead of it being replaced with a TGI Friday's or a Nordstrom.

But there is a downside to all if you think about it. The fact that this prime retail space is unable to get an anchor tenant and has to lease out their space to a flea market in order to get some type of cashflow, just shows how messed up things are.

Correction. This shows how messed up things are.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Backing out of Black Friday

I hope everyone had an amazing Thanksgiving, now onto Black Friday. Here is some coverage.

Don't Just Sit There — Go and Shop!

Five Ways to Avoid a Black Friday Trampling

At the Stroke of Midnight, the Shopping Began

With the way the economy is right now, I am going to wait it out to at least Christmas. The items that I need to buy are necessities for the home, however these are goods that are not in the highest demand as of now so I am going to see how low it will go.

For those of you brave enough to venture out. Here is a link for survival tips.

Happy Hunting!

This is getting out of hand.

By now everyone has heard of the attention whores Tareq and Michaele Salahi.

Yeah, Yeah, 15 minutes, looking for fame blah, blah blah. I find this type of behavior abhorrent because this couple shows absolutely no respect for the White House, the Presidency and America.

I learned a long time ago that you never show up somewhere where you not invited. You put the hosts in a very uncomfortable situation. It also reflects poorly on the uninvited which is the understatement of the year in regards to this couple.

5 years ago, Jon Stewart did an interview with 60 Mintutes. I believe in this interview he was asked a question about interviewing the GW Bush who was President at the time and basically if he would rip him a new one. His response that he would not interview GW Bush in that fashion, not because he was admirer of Bush but because he of his respect of the presidential office.

This is a man who makes his living skewering politicians and there has been no bigger target to skewer than our last president. But even he knows that a certain level of manners must be applied.

The only way I see an end to this is if someone does something very illegal and I mean beyond balloon boy, something so f**ked in the head outrageous that it requires serious prison time.

If this incident isn't it, I do not know what is.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Here we go again

Back to Business
Wall St. Finds Profits by Reducing Mortgages

What perfect timing they have.

Wave of Debt Payments Facing U.S. Government

So is America too big to fail?

Friday, November 20, 2009

A second wind

I had a bit of an epiphany today regarding the economy which began from what I read about certain investment banks who are actually hiring aggressively rather than cutting back. And it got me thinking, why would they do that in this economy?

As I mentioned before, I heard from a friend of mine who works in the hedge fund industry told me that that many finance players are taking advantage of the fact that many of their competitors have been wiped out. However I wasn't convinced that was the only reason.

Then I read this article.

"A Truly Extraordinary Slump": Reports of Robust Recovery Premature, James Galbraith Says

As everyone knows, the economy is still in the crapper. Regardless of what anyone says we have a long way to go. Credit markets are frozen and people are scrambling for money.

Which leads me to this article.

Galbraith: Government Spending Is the Solution, Not the Problem

The government is the only one with cash on hand and their first handout was obviously not enough.

Since the likelihood of another stimulus plan is on the horizon, my theory is that the finance industry is gearing up to take advantage of the situation. That is why a lot of these places are ramping up and building their profit centers at fighting strength in order maximize whatever opportunities come their way.

What does this mean for the real estate market in Manhattan? Well, honestly, I do not know. I think there will be definitely some buyers out there flush with cash, but I would not be surprised to see some buyers saving for a rainy day if they do not need to buy an apartment.

In the end, this is all about the economic recovery. We'll see how this plays out. But defintely expect more tension.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Sad Panda

Since their appearance, Sad Panda has been a bit of a mystery. All sorts of theories about this person were floating around. Finally someone decided to get to the truth.

The Sad Panda is a heart breaking and poignant story about sacrifice, a son's duty, poverty and health care. After watching this video, ask yourself this one question.

"What would you do to survive?"

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

What a bargain!

Silverdome sells for ... less than a house
Unidentified Toronto-based real estate company buys Pontiac stadium for $583,000 - a fraction of the $55.7 million it cost to build.

For those of saying that the real estate market is recovering, stop smoking the green shoots.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Return of the Working Girl?

No. Not this Working Girl.

Saturday Morning at around 9am I was on my walking to get breakfast when the strangest thing occurred. I was minding my own business when a woman who was walking past me asked me this question.

"Are you looking for some company?"

I kept walking but my internal response was the following "What the f*k did she just say?"

For those of you who do not know what that means that is hooker speak for "I am a hooker and I am open for business."

What is really more messed up was that this woman did not look anything like her brethren from the Hookers on the point documentary. She wore white leggings, a beret type of hat and was generally presentable. Here make was impeccable and was not overboard. What really stood out was her hair. It was a perm job with blonde highlights. Overall, she was an attractive girl in her 20's and did not look like a stereotypical streetwalker, in fact she looked like a girl who was out clubbing.

Did I mention this occurred right across from Grand Central Station?

The last time I saw a street walker in public in New York City was almost 20 years ago when I was walking through Time Square and this hooker was walking with a potential John trying to work a deal. But then they practically disappeared from that area when Giuliani came on the scene.

This is definitely another indication of how f**ked up our economy is and for those of you pondering in working in the world's oldest profession you might want to read this first.

Friday, November 13, 2009

About time.

This is from Curbed regarding a new Trader Joe's.

Thursday, November 12, 2009


Ingratitude to one's nation, especially when they have been provided with so much, is something that I personally find despicable in a human being.

Which brings me to this piece of trash.

First of all I want to get something clear right now. As far as I am concerned, this man does not represent Muslims. True Muslims are peace loving people. I remember watching the History Channel on Muslims and learned that in ancient times, that when Muslims lived in a relative in peace in ares they controlled. The reason why is that the Muslims were actually pretty chill with people that were under their rule. Back then, Muslims let non-Muslims do live their lives as long as they did not attack Muslims and paid their taxes.

What I am writing about is ingratitude, selfishness and the choosing to hurt and destroy others out of frustration about one's life.

Here are some facts about this douchebag.

First all this piece of human waste wanted to get out of the Army.

Around 2004, Major Hasan started feeling disgruntled about the Army, relatives said. He described anti-Muslim harassment and sought legal advice, possibly from an Army lawyer, about getting a discharge.

But because the Army had paid for his education, and probably because the Army was in great need of mental health professionals and was trying to recruit Arab-Americans, he was advised that his chances of getting out were minuscule, relatives said.

“They told him that he would be allowed out only if Rumsfeld himself O.K.’d it,” said a cousin, Nader Hasan, referring to Donald H. Rumsfeld, then the secretary of defense. Relatives said they were unclear whether Major Hasan sought assistance from a private lawyer; then, about two years ago, his cousin Nader Hasan said, he resigned himself to staying in the Army through the end of his commitment.

An Army spokesman said on Sunday that he did not know the length of Major Hasan’s commitment. But for medical officers, it is typically seven years after graduation from military medical school, which would have meant at least into 2010 for Major Hasan.

There were a litany of options for this a**hole to follow where he could opt out of the military. Worst case scenario he could ask for sanctuary at a mosque. And if he had stuck out his toru of duty, he would he would have his wake up within a year.

Here is what really angers me.

Major Hasan was the oldest of three boys, all of whom helped in the family businesses before going off to college and professional schools. Major Hasan graduated with honors from Virginia Tech in biochemistry in 1995. His brother Anas became a lawyer and moved several years ago to Ramallah in the West Bank, where the family still owns property, relatives said. The third brother, Eyad, graduated from George Mason University and became a human resources officer for a medical research firm based in Virginia.

Against the wishes of his parents, relatives said, Major Hasan enlisted in the Army after graduating from college and entered an officer basic training program at Fort Sam Houston, Tex. He was commissioned in 1997 and went to medical school at the Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences in Bethesda, Md., a selective and tuition-free program.

Here's the deal folks. When you join Uncle Sam's Volunteer Military, you volunteer with the understanding you are the property of the United States Government. Even after your tour of duty is up and you have left the military, you are still subject to being recalled which was reported by 60 Minutes.

And whether you are a cook for the military or a Navy Seal, you must accept the fact that you will be put in harm's way. You got a problem with that? Then don't join the military.

Besides the senseless tragic loss of human life, what also makes me angry is that this douchebag should have made peace with the fact that there was a chance that the armed forces would come into conflict with the Middle East, after all any child with a junior high school education knows that America bombed Libya.

He was given the best medical education in the field that is sorely needed in our military and now he was having second thoughts? He wasn't even going to be harm's way. And he was not even going to be pulling the trigger on other Muslims.

This did not have to go down this way. He could have been a contentious objector or he could have gone AWOL and jumped ship to Canada.

I am just so angry about this betrayal because this murderous piece of garbage got everything he asked from our country. Uncle Sam did his part but this a**hole did not have the balls to hold up his end of the deal and he had to kill and hurt innocent people in the process.

It is hard enough to be a soldier nowadays. They don't need this. They don't deserve this.

Monday, November 09, 2009

Somethings are best left unsaid

Since the economic crisis, a certain house of worship has been aggressively expanding their presence in New York City which also includes a membership drive and fund raising. During a recent service it was proudly announced that because of the personal pledges of certain high ranking members of this house of worship, they were halfway to their fund raising goal. This was no small feat especially in this economy since their goal is in the 8 figures.

Their objective of the announcement was to encourage more people to donate and that these numbers proved the economy was not an excuse.

Unfortunately this bit of news may have the opposite effect because at least one section, when the collection baskets were passed around, they were noticeably bare.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009


Took them long enough.

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

It's that time of year.

Yes. I have a cold. I felt something coming down on Halloween weekend and I am sure hanging out at Webster Hall did not help matters.

I will keep you posted.

Monday, November 02, 2009

Trader Joe's chatter

Recently I was at Trader Joe's on Central Ave in Westchester which is a far cry from the one in Union Square. It is definitely busy but you do not have to coordinate your schedule around the amount of traffic coming in.

The cashier and I were discussing the madhouse that the Trader Joe's in Union Square has become. He informed that he notices a lot of New Yorkers coming here to shop. It is a such in the proverbial butt to shop at the Union Square location so what a lot of them do is rent a car for a day and drive up to Central Ave Trader Joe's.

However, this trend has not gone unnoticed. The cashier informed me that Trader Joe's is looking at other locations in Manhattan to alleviate the stress in Union Square.

All I have to say is that this is best time for Trader Joe's to find a new location or locations. The commercial market is down and vacancies are everywhere. Any landlord in their right mind would give their left nut for a Trader Joe's and would give as many concessions as possible.