Foreign investors in Southern California: Over half of new homes in Irvine purchased by Asian buyers. SoHo China CEO reluctant on buying overseas real estate. AirBnB and VRBO Irvine rentals.

There is still a large amount of foreign money flowing into targeted markets for the direct purpose of purchasing real estate.  Not cheap real estate but trophy properties.  Usually when people get angry about the money flowing into some of these communities there is an underlying perception that they are being priced out.  There is certainly a factor driving home prices up but are you going to buy that $1 million home when it hits $800,000?  Most don’t have the funds to purchase $700,000 crap shacks let alone these trophy properties.  A few readers sent over the data on Irvine new home sales where a new community sold roughly 80 percent of its properties to what appears to be foreign buyers.  It is an easy process to ascertain these details because you can simply look at cash purchases.  From what I gather, the vast majority of local professionals will need a mortgage to buy.  Irvine has some interesting trends because there are new communities coming online that seem to fully focus on the foreign money trend.  In Inception like fashion, the community that sold so well is “Arcadia” in Irvine.  As in an already foreign money focused area of Los Angeles now having a community built out in Irvine with the same name.  Sort of like the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim (Anaheim is in Orange County by the way).

Foreign money into Irvine real estate

First, a piece from the article:

“(Bloomberg) Buyers from China and Asian-Americans purchased about 80 percent of the 47 houses sold at Tri Pointe Homes Inc.’s Arcadia at Stonegate community in Irvine, about 40 miles southeast of Los Angeles, according to Tom Mitchell, president of the Irvine-based builder.

Almost half of the buyers paid cash for houses in the development, at prices starting at $1.16 million, he said. The company has been surprised by how word travels among overseas buyers.

“A Chinese national bought one of our houses at Arcadia in Irvine after reading about it on a blog,” Tri Pointe CEO Doug Bauer said in a telephone interview. “It was a Chinese blog. We couldn’t even read it.”

So I decided to pull-up a snapshot of these communities:

communities irvine stonegate

The cash buying is the major indicator of foreign funds.  I’m positive you also have local families purchasing these homes leveraging every penny they have to cover the mortgage.  But to have all cash on a $1.16 million purchase is unlikely to come from young working professionals even if mom and dad funnel in some funds.  These homes are catering to a wealthy clientele largely from China.  I love the fact that the community of “Arcadia” in Irvine was marketed on a blog that was fully in Chinese and the CEO of Tri-Pointe, the maker of these homes couldn’t even read or understand.  I’m certain he understands the massive cash flowing into this market.

What I also found interesting is the name of these communities.  These are all a play on high-priced locations.  This isn’t “New York” in Irvine or “Hampton” in Irvine.  They used the name “Arcadia” and “Palo Alto” connoting big-time real estate values here.

Supposedly, China has restrictions on money flowing out of the country but wealthy people like wealthy people in the US have creative ways around those restrictions:

“Some wealthy Chinese have come up with ways to evade the yearly $50,000 per-person limit on taking money out of the country so they can buy U.S. real estate, Yu said. Methods include laundering money through Macau casinos and cooking the books of import-export companies, he said.

“A lot of people over-invoice export proceeds, so they can park some money outside,” Ha Jiming, chief investment strategist for Goldman Sachs Group Inc.’s China investment management division, said at a Los Angeles conference in April.

Sales of U.S. houses to long-term foreign residents and non-resident buyers accounted for about 7 percent of the $1.2 trillion of existing-home transactions in the year through March, the National Association of Realtors said.”

I find all of this interesting especially since Irvine is unique in the respect that new communities are coming online.  Another reader mentioned that Irvine is planning on building a Veterans Cemetery near these new home developments and of course, some people are now worried about their big ticket home purchases:

“(OC Register) But for a group of Asian residents that live near Irvine’s Great Park, the image is appalling – any cemetery would violate a strong cultural taboo of living near the dead.

Now, even as the state Department of Veterans Affairs prepares to request federal funds to build the cemetery, residents in the neighborhood – including people who aren’t worried about the bad feng shui – are pushing city officials and others to make sure it’s built somewhere else. Property values, many say, will be damaged.

And a wild card emerged this week. Orange County Supervisor Todd Spitzer, who supports the veterans cemetery at the Great Park, said a 288-acre parcel near Anaheim Hills might serve as a cemetery where veterans could be buried.”


Wait.  So the driving force of relocating a cemetery for our war veterans is now being driven by property values?  We are talking about a place for eternal rest for those fighting for our freedoms, not a new theme park or sports stadium.  Keep in mind some of these new communities are being bought up by more than half of foreign money.  Of course the house lusters are more focused on inflating real estate values at all costs.  But even big investors from China are seeing frothy markets:

“(WSJ) Amid all the hype about Chinese investors buying real estate abroad, one prominent tycoon is bucking the trend.

Zhang Xin, chief executive officer of commercial property developer Soho China, said that real estate assets in major cities abroad are currently too pricey.

“I’d be holding cash now because if you look around, outside of China, assets are just so expensive because of all the rounds and rounds of QE,” Ms. Zhang said Monday at a panel during the opening of Soho China’s latest office building in Shanghai.

In recent years, quantitative easing efforts taken by the U.S. and European Union to support their economies have included bond-buying programs, which some say have flooded the markets with cheap capital and driven up asset prices.”

If anything this shows how even a working professional couple is going to have a tough time buying that $1.16 million new home in Irvine.  And these places are built right next to each other.  But these builders know their audience.  And that audience is probably not you unless you are prepared to buy with a suitcase of cash.  On the other hand, there is now a trend in Irvine of people listing their properties on AirBnB and VRBO so you might be living next to one of these homes that suddenly turns into a high priced rental.  Of course this is probably (very likely) against most HOA rules.  Of course current residents aren’t taking too kindly to their “quite safe” neighborhood turning into a high priced hotel:

community talk

And part of the big trend in buying happened before the crash in Chinese stocks.  You also have the government becoming more stringent on money leaving the country.  Welcome to SoCal real estate.  And, Orange County has the fastest jump in inventory of all SoCal counties.

Any boots on the ground in Irvine willing to shed some light on the above?

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157 Responses to “Foreign investors in Southern California: Over half of new homes in Irvine purchased by Asian buyers. SoHo China CEO reluctant on buying overseas real estate. AirBnB and VRBO Irvine rentals.”

  • I’ve been to some of the new sites around the great park over the past year, and almost everyone there were not only oversea Asians, presumably all cash buyers, but also multi-generational. In fact most of the floor plans of the model homes I looked at had mother in law suites.

    It’s only a matter of time before the Chinese take a bath, just like the Japanese did 25 years ago.

    • Alex in San jose

      They’re warming up the water as you speak. But, for the average Chinese, better to be poor in America than middle class and go to the Gulag in China.

      • You are delusional. I can tell you have never been near China. I am a retired American in China. The middle class is growing and doing fine, unlike America. As for Gulags, the police state and the world’s biggest prison system say that America is the gulag. You should get a passport and travel. Maybe you wouldn’t be making such ignorant statements.

    • Wife and I went to the welcome center (or whatever you call it) for the Great Park neighborhoods, and one of the (presumably Chinese) sales associates could barely speak English! I guess we know who part of their target market is.

      Some of the $800k condos there are pretty nice. Hopefully, they’ll be $600k or less in not too long. The thing I dislike about the Great Park area is that it is so far from the 5 Freeway; not to mention that the 5 is consistently burdened with traffic. If you were to commute even to Newport Beach for work, which is technically the next city over, you would probably have a 45 minute commute.

      • Alex in San Jose

        45 minutes at 1AM maybe, more like over an hour.

      • What do you mean the great park is far from the 5 freeway? The great park touches the 5 freeway. The community is pretty large, though so you might end up a few miles from the freeway, but the drive to get to the freeway is easy.

    • On the flip side, it is a cultural attitude. Indians and Chinese people (people from those countries and not the ones who are born and raised here) believe strongly in saving money and passing on your savings/legacy to your children so they can have a better life and things can be easier on them. One key aspect is to purchase property and to pass it on to your kids so they won’t be burdened with the expense of buying a home.

      In Chicago a lot of older ethnic Eastern Europeans did the same thing. They bought two to four unit buildings. The whole family lived there and so it was easier to buy it outright or pay it off quickly and then give that asset off to the kids.

      • I will likely be passing on plenty of money and property to my kid as well. It’s unnecessary to have generations of family members living with each other in order to do that, unless you like that sort of thing (which I don’t).

      • Alex in San Jose

        Nimesh – in the US, almost all of the social mobility is downward.

        In my family, it’s been upper middle class to barely middle class to poverty. Out of my 4 siblings and I, none of us have kids because none of us like the idea of our kids digging in the trash heaps to eat, which is the next step.

      • son of a landlord

        One key aspect is to purchase property and to pass it on to your kids so they won’t be burdened with the expense of buying a home. In Chicago a lot of older ethnic Eastern Europeans did the same thing.

        That might be true. I am told that in the 1930s, my grandfather bought three houses for his three kids (one of whom was my father). But in the 1940s, Romania’s newly empowered Communists confiscated those houses. Too many houses for one family.

        I never got to ask him about it, as my grandfather died in the 1950s. I was born in NYC in the 1960s, my father already on his way to becoming a NYC landlord.

      • This is a reply to Alex in San Jose, I think the problem is that Millennials are so goddam lazy and entitled. Am I the only one to think that? The reason prior generations were more successful on a relative basis, and you can see this in immigrant families today and in the past, is that they consumed far less than they earned. So you have a large net savings that accrues over time that you invested in your children, primarily in higher education. It’s a pretty basic formula, but it requires you to maintain a relatively low standard of living for an extended period of time, something like 20-30 years. This current generation is simply not equipped to do something like that, with the exception of immigrants who come from a country with a lower standard of living than the United States to begin with.

      • Dean — that’s a great point. I am an immigrant and I can’t believe that my millennial peers are willing to go so deeply into debt and over-leverage themselves just so they can drive a nicer car, live in a hipster neighborhood, and eat out 4 nights a week. They’re one bad break away from being ruined. What’s the Warren Buffet line: You only see the people not wearing bathing suits when the tide goes out?

      • I think you believe it to be more altruistic then it really is. They use their children as retirement plans, hence the push for school and excellence.

      • Dean you right on in explaining the real cause for diference in wealth between older generations and millenials.

        I also came peniless in this country decades ago with zero help from my parents who were poor and died poor. Today I am a multimilionaire. I started low, work hard, went to school and over the years, living well below my means I saw the exponential effect of compounding. Most young people today never heard about the rule of 72, forget to understanding the meaning of it.

        What US offers comparative to other countries (it did and still does) is opportunity for all who are ready for it. It doesn’t give you money but you can advance even if you are not well “connected”. I am talking from experience.

      • Alex in San jose

        Reply – what you probably did is what’s described in the book The Millionaire Next Door. You went into something that’s necessary, if unglamourous, and pays recently, like running a scrap metal operation, me lived below your means, and let time do its magic.

        I am not millennial, I am generations x and all you need to know about my generation can be found in Ted Rall’s excellent book, Revenge Of The Latch-Key Kids.

      • I don’t disagree that drive and motivation, especially in some foreign cultures make them more successful than ‘victimized’ Americans. And I do believe strongly in self-motivation. However, there is one fact everyone who used this argument ignores … the U.S. was better off when its assembly lines were producing goods and paying those workers $30 – $40/hr … prosperity was more widespread and it gave rise to the middle class. It is impossible for everyone to be a Doctor or programming guru. Reality is there are different rungs on the ladder and that this country was better off when more people benefitted from our economy!

      • Alex in San jose

        Dean, imwas out working and feeding my siblings with the proceeds starting at age 13. Work was very very hard to get and being white in Hawaii meant most work was not available to me. The families who would lay well for babysitting did not want a white kid watching their kids, so I watched the kids of people just slightly less poor than we were, for very cheap. I weeded yards, again, the good payers did not want white hands laboring in their yard so I only got the cheapest jobs, for the few other white families who were around. Sold art I did, dove for coral heads and cleaned them, and mainland tourists would pay me 25c or 35c for one….. Ramen was 30c a package in the 1970s WTF? I don’t think I made back the calories I spent. I got pretty good at fishing and foraging.

        As soon as I was 18 I was on my own to sink or swim.

        I was at a meeting not long ago and some dude who was 24 or so said he was afraid to leave home etc etc and I guess I was kind of an asshole because I blurted out that by that age I’d been self supporting for years, done a bunch of jobs, was in college, and so on.

      • Alex in San jose

        JNS – in 1950, I’d have been hired by a company even just as a tech, made enough to rent my own apartment and even have a car, and the company would have happily paid for my further training, right up to BSEE and even Masters.

        By the time I turned 18, in 1980, there was basically nothing.

        Tech is dead, except for a very few. My being white and poor and smart now is like being black and poor and tall, and everyone telling you to play basketball because look at all the money lebron James makes.

        Hell, I’d have done far better getting a degree in physical education because that leads to a unionized government job teaching PE to kids and hoping they don’t give me a swirly.

        I was essentially raised to be an artist, and my turning away from it at age 18 was a huge mistake. With some planning g and budgeting, I’d be worth a million easily by now with an art degree and Pershing that trade, starting with the degree with the same pell grant at the same state college I wasted time in studying STEM BS.

        If your kid is into any wierd thing, encourage him, don’t push him into STEM.

    • Undisclosed source

      News flash, Spencer Stone, hero of the France train incident, was stabbed by six Chinese in Sacramento. There is every reason for us to be concerned about the Chinese Tongs and Triads in Irvine. That is one reason why some non Chinese people leave when the Chinese come into Irvine. Search google and you will learn about the Chinese gangs that the news media does not like to cover. It only takes one rotten apple to spoil the barrel.

      • Alex in San jose

        The news reports only say Asian. I’d guess more likely vietnamese. He was defending a lady from the guys.

        If there are tongs in the USA they’re much more likely to be loansharking and smuggling people in from china than getting into random bar fights.

        God the new Internet sucks. When can we go back to something easier, like Morse code or cuneiform?

      • son of a landlord

        Alex, how do you know what the Tongs are up to these days?

        People read an internet article on gangs, or see a History Channel documentary on gangs, and suddenly they think they’re experts on the whole gang phenomenon.

        I’m sure that men of many different backgrounds — gang affiliations and non-gang affiliations — get into bar fights.

      • Alex in San jose

        SonOfAL – I’ll be quick to admit I’m not completely up on what the tongs are up to lately.

        There’s a kind of rough Chinese run bar up the street from my work. I went to check the place out, might be good for a burger and a beer, right? It was all Chinese people, and that cheesy music I like, and the looks I got were pretty hard. I said something like “nice place” and made my way out. Not long after, a guy was shot and killed in there. A week or so later, the guy who’s in the back half of the building g was shocked to see me, he hadn’t seen me and had read about the shooting in the paper (they never mention race) and thought it had been me.

        I’d said to him, after checking that place out, “I bet if we went in there, a beer would be ten bucks” and he said, “no if we went in there, we’d not be served at all”.

      • Alex in San jose

        Goddamnit that cheesy music THEY like, I hate that shit.

      • First of all Asians make up 40% of the population in Irvine. Yet their crimes rates are VERY SMALL. Compared to that of Whites, Mexicans and Blacks.

        Check out the local registered pedophiles and sex offenders in Irvine. You’ll be shocked to see how many of them are whites.

  • Has anyone seen the quicken loans commercial advising us to buy in and get a mortgage. I have only seen it late night and usually just once a week. This is just absurd and I wanted to hear other people’s thought on this blatant attempt to manipulate people.

    • Yes. that obnoxious Quicken Loans ad campaign is so manipulative. As if the american dream somehow is inexorably linked to home ownership, and that despite debt to income ratios being off the charts, now is the best time to buy because rates are so low. Obviously facts support the opposite, buy when interest rates are high, and home prices are low for a plethora of reasons.

    • Alex in San jose

      I don’t have a TV but the ads on the radio…. Flip This House! Non secured loans, schemes to invest, Paul Blanco and his scam car loans…. Lots of money sloshing around out there looking for a place to go.

      The average American is shopping at the dollar store and saving up for bicycle tires.

      • Alex, you need to send your unemployed, homeless, bike-riding tech buddies here to San Diego. We’ve been having a really hard time finding qualified developers. My company hired a software QA guy recently, and had a grand total of TWO résumés to choose from. That’s with an employment service and Craigslist ads going.

        Granted we don’t pay like the bay area (I’m guessing our newer, experienced .NET developers make something like $80k), but they can also have a 20 to 30 minute commute to a very nice inland town and pay $2,000/month to rent a big, beautiful condo. Even with a Bimmer payment that’s a decent amount of money left over. A couple would do even better.

      • @ Alex – I hate those radio ad so much I have to change the station for a few minutes. It’s fvkking ludicrus how they keep trying to part naive and less educated people from their money. It males me wanna puke.

        in SF bay area, the 95.7 the Game: has ads for Paul Blanco insurance, cashcow for 100% cash out refi… they go out of their way to tell you that housing have gone up and that Should cash out equity for other things. and Less not forget the ad for Flip houses and make money with other people’s money… that one makes wanna break the radio.

        @ John D. ok.. 2000/mo. rent and Bmw payment on a 80K salary?? what??

        80K after all deductions in CA. is like ~ $1800 take home every 2 weeks.

      • If you’re paying out 40-45% in taxes, you need a new CPA.

        (Also note that I didn’t say it was smart to spend like that on an $80k salary, but definitely doable, even after food, utilities, clothes, etc., and with not-insignificant money left over.)

      • Alex in San jose

        John d. – in my lifetime I have only seen that tech pays shit.

        I first heard about the Rubik’s cube from Omni Magazine, a sort of WIRED for the late 70s. For some reason I thought it was a challenge to figure out how it worked. I thought for a bit, and then drew an exploded diagram illustrating how one would!d work. I was correct. This was when I was 17.

        I’m smart. I’m the kind of person the STEM companies say they want to hire. I have always been a hard worker because being non-minority, and non-american readers may not realize how far that can set you back in the large tech companies, I had to out produce my minority co workers just to keep my job. If they repaired 15 units a day, I repaired 18 or 20. But I got paid less than any of them. I never made as much as the buys working in the warehouse.

        I have seen tech meaning shit pay for a lifetime.

        You want smart, productive people? Recruit them instead of just hiring Sanjay’s cousin, and pay them decently.

        If I get down to San Diego, I’ll be blowing into a saxophone or drawing caricatures and making more than 99% of tech workers. I’m not falling for that tech shit any more.

    • It’s ok. Suzanne researched this!

      • .NET Developers would rather make 120K in LA than 80K in San Diego. San Diego needs to come to terms with it’s current high cost of living and start dishing out more salary.

      • ILtoCorona: I was a little off, it’s closer to $90k. Still, I for one would not live in the LA pit of despair for anything short of a lottery win. They can keep their $30k. Despite the lower salaries, San Diego does have the advantage of allowing singles the ability to rent (not buy) in a great neighborhood and still have a relatively short commute. We have $15/hour folk here (lovely business-friendly Carlsbad) with 20 minute commutes from nice areas with good schools. Of course San Diego proper is working furiously on making their traffic suck as badly as LA’s.

  • Here in San Diego, one of the new KB developments is building big, 2 story homes. Went to check the models and every single one of them had pictures of families and about 9 out of 10 pictures showed Asian people. They are definitely targeting their audience!

  • Mr.Smith in Ktown

    Two interesting articles on CNBC over the last two days,mainstream media is starting to call the bubble.

  • living in stonegate

    I currently live in Stonegate. This area is literally all Chinese and Indians. I take my kid to the park and I see no one but chinese and indians. This is no exaggeration. I have seen only a few non-chinese/non-indian here. Most seem like they are multi-generational since I see kids playing with their grandparents mostly.

    I drank the kool-aid and moved out to Irvine and I have regretted it ever since. This area is congested, lacking diversity, people are rude/arrogant, too much traffic, air quality is horrible. There is a large trash dumpsite nearby, where all of Southern California brings their trash. As a result, we have thousands of dump trucks driving down the main streets here causing traffic, making very loud noises and making the air smell really bad. Ive counted the number of trash trucks and on average I see about 20-30 trucks EVERY minute. Again no exaggeration. These trucks run 24 hours a day except on Sundays. million dollar homes but you have to deal with this crap?????

    Furthermore, the great park that you wrote about is probably worse. Not only are they planning on a cemetary, these homes are built on a previous superfund site. There are known carcinogens that have been dumped there by the military. There is a large plume of toxic chemicals underneath this area and many parts of Irvine. Yet, these new homes demand SUPER high prices even for Irvine standards and there is very very high mello roos on top of that. Its no wonder these homes are not selling. Im actually surprised that they have been able to sell a few homes.

    Not only are these homes by great park not selling, there is a general slow down in all of Irvine. People keep saying Irvine is immune to housing slow down. I call BS. There are price drops everywhere I see. Even Orchard Hills which opened 1 or 2 years ago and was selling like hot cakes has slowed down and even resorted to price drops! PRice drops which every realtor and Irvine kool-aid drinking residents thought would never happen.

    As far as I am concerned, I am not sure why people would pay so much to live in Irvine. There are positives to Irvine like good schools and convenience, but that is easily overshadowed by prices and all the other negatives.

    • @living in stonegate: Thank you for your response. I’m curious as to when you bought and for what price? The market seems crazy right now and unfortunately, some of the new construction I have seen in Irvine doesn’t seem all that great especially for the price.

    • I heard that when you buy a house in Irvine you are not buying the land underneath the house you are actually leasing the land from the Irvine co for 99 years

      • Alex in San Jose

        That’s called leasehold. Owning the land is called fee simple. This is a thing in Hawaii where I grew up.

      • Ben:

        I owned property in the Woodbury Village in Irvine. Mine and all the newer developments I know are fee simple. It means I own the land as well.


    • Alex in San jose

      Part of what you’re seeing is that whites don’t tend to go to the park any more, they go to the gym, and their kids go right home or to after school activities.

      Go to your local soccer field and you’ll see lots of Hispanics and a few whites. Go to your local basketball court and youll see lots ofmwhites and blacks. Tennis? Whites with a smattering of others. Badminton? Heavily Asian.

      • Alex, that’s not quite a fair assessment. The ethnic make up of a local park is roughly the same as the surrounding population. If you live in a mostly Asian neighborhood, you’ll most likely see more Asians.

      • Alex in San jose

        BooshiDooshi – I guess you might be right, thinking about all the Volvo and Mercedes wagon driving white moms and their kids in the local park when I lived in Newport Beach…

        Fond? Memories of the old Sikh guy who used to take early evening walks around my Sunnyvale neighborhood when the sun angle was low, in his translucent robe, um, no underwear, sometimes you see more of people than you want!

    • How was the street parking at Stonegate? My husband and I checked out Cypress Village over the weekend and considering it’s not fully built out there yet, lots of folks parking cars in the street — a sign to us of quite a few multi-generational families. We struggle enough with a lack of guest parking in our area — that (along with costs) completely turned us off from Cypress Village.

    • One thing I hate about my own people (I am of Indian heritage) is the ethno-centric attitude the fresh off the boat Indians have. I still remember how when I was growing up my parents forbid me to make friends with whites, Hispanics or blacks. They only wanted me to associate with fellow Indians and to study hard. Sadly these fresh off the boat Indians have similar attitudes. In their mind they think their culture is so great. Well if Indian culture is so great then why the f did they move from India to the U.S.? Let’s call a spade a spade; India and China are both failed nations.

      The typical fresh off the boat Indian attitude is: 1. We are number one. 2. The kids should only associate with fellow Indians. 3. Place a lot of pressure on the kids to study hard and be relentless. 4. Save money as if it is a obsessive compulsive disorder. 5. Never take constructive criticism. They only want to hear good things about the Indian community and never any bad. Constructive criticism to an Indian is like kryptonite.

      • Hi Nimesh, thanks for the truthful assessment. It’s not just Indians. The superiority complex is prevalent in many ethnicities, especially in Irvine. I’m of Asian decent and am glad my father never picked some “ethnic enclave” to live in. I’m comfortable wherever I go. It’s only an opinion, but I think some parents handicap their children in doing so. Not to mention ruining an area for others to live in.

      • The saving money thing is huge amongst my Asian relatives and family members. It’s just a different way of seeing money. To people from poor countries, money is seen as zero sum – if I get money, it is at the expense of someone else. Everyone is out to rob you, so hold on to your money with your dear life!

        The way we think about money in America is different. We like to see the pie as growing rather than fighting over a piece of a stagnant pie. We tend to be optimistic about the future, and that’s what sets up apart from other countries. We don’t have a wealth hoarding mentality because we expect there to be more wealth coming tomorrow. And this is really why India, China or any other can’t ever be the top economic power over America. They see money spent on innovation as a waste of money, we see it as an investment. They see money to be saved, we see it as something to be invested.

        Housing plays into this. In countries I have visited, the poorer or stagnant ones are the ones that place emphasis on property. When you can’t trust the job market or the stock market, you trust the property market. And that’s all well and good until you realize that high property prices in the long-term kill your population growth. Money invested into housing means money that could go into starting novel businesses never makes it there, and that even novel businesses get their money extracted by landowners. San Francisco is a prime example of this where programmers making $120K pay $4K to rent an apartment. The landlords capture the value not the people doing the work.

      • Alex in San Jose

        Nimesh, don’t worry, we all pretty much find all of you to be annoying as hell. Except for Gary Singh. Gary Singh’s cool. Him and Nazi candy. It’s pretty hilarious, that Nazi candy. And Gary Singh’s articles in the weekly are great.

      • Alex in San jose

        LAer – the USA used to be a country of the growing pie. That stopped in the mid-1970s. We are now a zero sum game country. This is why who your parents are, what class you were born into, matter so much now. If you are going to become rich, two or three others have to become homeless. This is why so few college grads, even in STEM fields, are working minimum wage jobs.

        Belief in the growing pie is very foolish now. Do what works in a zero – sum society and you will come out ahead. And laugh at those who believe in the growing pie.

    • Living in Stonegate – very interesting comment on the price drops….are you seeing price drops for the new homes sites by Irvine Co. and Great Park homes? It seems like there’s even more significant price drops for resales throughout Irvine – especially for the more expensive homes (>$850K/$900K+). It will be really interesting to see if this continues? I’m not sure how much impact any rate hike will have if most of the price inflation for homes is due to the all cash buyers…but maybe at some point these all cash buyers will realize that they are also overpaying for what they get – an Irvine address and IUSD or TUSD schools. For the new homes, the builders/developers are really squeezing the most out of the land – most homes have no real driveway, very small or no space between lots, etc.
      It doesn’t seem like the toxic issues – former superfund site/TCE plume or the Bowerman landfill have stopped people from buying here. Sadly we won’t know if these toxic issues will cause any harm to residents until 10-20 years later…and then it will be very difficult to prove causation unless there’s a huge cluster….

      • prices at new builds all over irvine have fallen (except Hidden Canyon). Builders are now listing homes on redfin, the first sign of desperation. However you can actually tract their price cuts there as well. I havent seen price reductions at the Great Park, but they have only been open a few months. I doubt we will see price reductions that quickly, but they are coming for sure. The sales there have been anemic. As a comparison, Orchard Hills homes have seen drastic cuts recently and they had significantly better sales compared to Great Park. Thus I feel price cuts are inevitable for Great Park. I think they just havent done it because its so new.

    • How can you possibly assume that when you see an asian person that they are chinese? Can you always accurately distinguish amongst the various east asian nationalities and indians from pakistanis and bangladeshis? Maybe you know all of these different languages and that’s how you can tell?

      How are you distinguishing Asian/Indian-AMERICANS from recent immigrants, or are they all the same to you? This comment is so typical of the “American” mindset that Asians are foreign regardless of how many generations they have been in the US. There are plenty of Asian Americans especially in California, whose families have been here for multiple generations. Meanwhile, a white Eastern European on the street by first glance is assumed to be “American” even if they are recent immigrants. Disgusting.

      • We can assume they are Chinese because this is where the money is coming from. Asian-Americans are being out priced by wealthy foreign Chinese. I walked in with my partner to one of these new developments and was greeted by someone that could barely speak English. When there, many of the real estate agent business cards have more Mandarin than English text. You can also tell by something called language. I’ve been in California for long enough to distinguish Chinese, Vietnamese, Thai, Korean, and Japanese to a lesser extent when it comes to people speaking. And don’t start talking about race. The money is flat out coming from China. Plain and simple. The fact that these “Asians” you speak of are protesting against a Veteran’s Cemetery in Irvine is the actual disgusting thing. Have you served in the military?

        Can you tell the difference between Spanish, French, Portuguese, or Russian? Some can. Is this racist? Look at the data. Get a grip. Asian money largely from China is buying up California real estate in select locations.

      • The Answer is simple…

        Why is everybody so damn touchy about everything.

        America was a colony of the British empire NOT the PRC… All the sudden some asians think that they are almighty…

        I grew up with 2 Japanese friends and their families were awesome, very proper and ethical that I always thought highly of. Ask me about my chinese class mates in college… very unethical and always trying to cheat, always trying to take credit for something they don’t deserve, always racists . Fresh off the boat or not… it’s the culture of I gotta beat you and I gotta win at all costs not matter what…

      • Actually, there are probably lots of Koreans in there too, white people have a lot of trouble telling apart folks from different parts of East Asia. I’m Taiwanese and a few times a year, someone older white gentleman will tell me that they have a new Korean wife who’s awesome, completely unsolicited. Sort of like when our beloved president George W. Bush thought Taiwanese people were from Thailand, you know, the Thais.

      • @Jay
        I am not disputing the fact that there is a lot of international money mostly from China buying real estate in Irvine and other areas of Southern California. Listen, Newport Coast is the next frontier, whether you like it or not! The really rich Chinese buy houses in Irvine to rent out, and buy houses in Newport for themselves to live in.

        What I am protesting is a previous poster claiming that they can tell people in Stonegate are
        1) all chinese and indian by seeing them from a distance at the neighborhood parks, and even if they could accurately tell country of origin,

        2) making no distinction between recent immigrants from those countries and those who were born or grew up here and have more in common with American culture than the culture of their parent’s homeland. Its like some people who assume Mexicans are all recent immigrants/illegals, when in reality, there are tons of Americans of Mexican heritage whose families have been in Southern California for generations.

        I would never claim to be able to 100% accurately distinguish various European nationalities based on looks alone, just like I would never claim to be able to distinguish between various East Asian nationalities based on looks alone, and I challenge anyone who claims that they can. There’s too much overlap.

      • kk,
        You seem a bit tightly wound about this Indian/chinese comment. It could have been for any number of reasons that the poster was confidant that that was the majority demographic. Based on sheer statistics, they were probably right. Or maybe it was because they can differentiate the FOBs from the first generations because of a multitude of signals–haircuts, facial hair, mannerisms, dress, who they hang with, gestures, etc. And who is to say that they don’t know the difference between a Vietnamese or Chinese or Thai. I think one should refrain from judgement with individuals….but when you are trying to discuss trends of housing and macroeconomics, chill out that people see the bigger picture more than trying to be PC. I think that you are confusing the issue.

        I am married to a sorta FOB Bangladeshi muslim…I am a white mix of all sorts of underprivileged european Catholic nationalities. I try not to have a chip on my shoulder about it even when minorities assume I am a wasp. Such is humanity.

      • I can tell because my wife is Korean, and while I only speak a little, I can usually recognize the difference between chinese, japanase, vietnamese, etc.. That and like another commented, it’s kind of an easy deduction, when the last names of the realtors are almost all chinese, a lot of the ads and brochures are in chinese, and the majority of foreign capital is coming from China. Irvine especially is being setup as the newest enclave for Chinese ex-pats, and we have even seen the pregnant chinese woman being put up in luxury apartments, while they wait to have their anchor babies. In fact the complex next door to where I live was raided a few months ago-

      • Alex in San jose

        I can tell the different groups, sub groups, and languages apart.

        I lived in Hawaii from the ages of 5 to 25. I grew up in the local culture, yet because of the color of my skin and my appearance, I was always treated as an outsider. I could not get a job as a cop, bus driver, work for the post office etc. Hell I could not clean hotel rooms or work in fast food.

        So I can tell you how it is to live where there is a non white ruling class. It completely and utterly sucks.

    • Commuting on the 405

      I pass one or three of those 18-wheeler trash trucks on my commute from Redondo Beach to Irvine every day. Man do they stink. Whenever I’m behind one, I can’t wait to pass it so I can breathe some fresh air again, contaminated only by good-old vehicle exhaust.

      It’s interesting to find out where all those trucks are heading. I would hate to live on the haul route there in Stone Gate.

      • Wow, that is a horrible commute. When I first moved here from Alaska I moved to Redondo Beach, I liked it there, but after a month had a better job offer in Irvine. It took me almost 2 hours to get there using the car pool lane when leaving around noon.

    • Alex in San jose

      Chinese people make an art form of being rude and inconsiderate. The local Chinese market is filthy,, they clean the counters and floors never. The cashiers have signs reminding g them to smile and be friendly, which they not necessarily are. The parking lot is only acceptable because they have a non Chinese person hired to keep it clean, by the complex, not the market. The bathroom is a horror.

      They like me fine because I am friendly and I don’t mind so much getting my meat from the butcher in a plastic bag like its vegetables. Pointing and nodding only needed to communicate with the butcher.

      But imagine living where as a white person you are a member of a small minority. Imagine e not being served, not getting local government services, getting stopped while walking or driving all the time by Asian cops, your kids getting bullied in school, not only the kids but the teacher too.

      I have lived in areas where Asians are in power and it is. Not. Fun.

      • Alex, I actually love hearing that. Most white people have no idea what it’s like living as a minority in this country.

      • Alex in San jose

        Dean – the only joyful thing about this is, as more whites learn of the systolic future for them caused by an Asian invasion, they’ll wise up, arm up, consult any friends of theirs who are vets, train up, and prepare to fight back.

        They did the right thing in Malaysia and Tahiti.

      • Alex in San jose





      • I live in one now within the city and your blowing it out of proportion plus its a bonus for being tall and getting the fruit in top layer that most can’t reach..

        The Chinese are not rude, usually very quiet and figuring out how to buy a home on their budget while Americans go to facebook and talk about the Kardashians…

      • Alex, this is Doctorhousingbubble not Stormfront.

  • So sad and such an irony that our decades long material greed for cheap foreign-made goods, has made so many Chinese rich, and now they are buying up California and other places! Our greed knows no end either … we’d sell our first born and our Mother’s if we could make a profit! And, we aren’t smart enough to figure out that all that Chinese wealth comes at the expense of American household’s, whose incomes adjusted for inflation have remained stagnant since the late 90’s, or at the expense of millions of individuals who have given up looking for work or millions more who are underemployed. Sadly, I remember growing up in the L.A. area when cutting down an orange grove to put up homes was a sign of middle class prosperity. Now, it seems only monied foreigners need show up at the sales offices!

    • Alex in San jose

      The brontosaurus in the room is capitalism, and since we’re doing out best to repeat the roaring 20s, which were of course followed by the dirty 30s, things ought to get interesting.

      • son of a landlord

        Back in the ’90s I remember people comparing the ’90s to the Roaring ’20s.

        Are we once again, for the third time, in the Roaring ’20s?

      • I see not only parallels in the roaring 20’s, with data to back up the wealth divide, and growing income inequality, I also see massive similarities in the .com boom, to that ‘there’s an app for that’ craze. Lots of internet based companies may end up coming out relatively unscathed, but people’s fear is only unmatched by their greed, so I guess we will see once the real sell of begins next year

      • The brontosaurus in the room is capitalism? No. The U.S. is a mixture of crony capitalism and socialism. California is a huge welfare state where California taxpayers pay high taxes to support the likes of Alex in San Jose.

      • Alex in San jose

        Seismic – I don’t get any welfare etc. I live cheap, work, and budget. I lay a higher amount of my lay in taxes than you do, $1300 on a 10k income for last year, since it looks like I will have made 13k this year, I will probably pay $2000 or a bit more.

        I have lived in a red state. Hardly any jobs, and everyone on food stamps. It was miserable. I was welcome to live at my friends large place, and get food stamps, indefinitely, but I came back out to California to work. I was born here. We work.

        California and blue states in general earn more, pay more taxes, and pay into red states, which are less productive and tax money from blue states flow into them.

        Bitch bitch bitch but I don’t see you leaving California. Admit it, you love it here.

    • Hotel California

      Look at the long term game plan. What we have been observing are sums of the money we sent to China in exchange for their labor as coming back home in exchange for glorified RE assets. After the eventual ebbing, these Chinese who think they’re getting away scot free are going to find a rude discovery in how taxation in this country isn’t part of the “stability” equation. By the time most realize it and attempt to sell in order to covert their store of wealth back to cash, they could find a lot of others are trying to do the same. In the end, they may become less than enamored with this escape hatch.

      • Alex in San jose

        On yes, the music stops and everyone tries to sell at once, plus that ten year window for keeping foreclosures off of the books ends…

        Plus, China is a huge country. It dwarfs the USA. They have ns and tons of land, in fact, due to bring pretty much in in UN-industrialized and feudal until the 1940s and then the delaying effect of Mao, you could argue that China today is like the united states in the 1950s or even earlier. A land of opportunity.

        So, park your money in an asset you have to pay tax on, in a market thats ripe to head downward again, or start, or invest in, the first Chinese company to produce truly verifiable clean and pure dairy products? Hmmmm.

    • That’s not true. Income adjusted for inflation is stagnant since the 70s not 90s. And on top of that prices of everywhere went up 3 to 10 times.

      • Alex in San Jose

        Yep stagnant or declining (depending on what class you’re in) since 1973-1975. Of course the top few per cent have done quite well.

  • Like we said before on this site, Chinese people by trend, if they think it is the in thing they flock to it, they also run from it if things get rough. All I know is one day a bubble next day all is good, the so called experts have no idea what and where housing ends up. Case Shiller says a bubble, Bernanke says very good recovery, glad these folks don’t handicap sporting events, they would only be right after the event happens, then they give us the big lie, and say ” We told you so”?

  • Does anyone have stats on how many non performing mortgages/homes are deliberatly being kept off the market by banks,ect… in order to artificially reduce supply. I am told banks by law do not have to mark to market for up to 10 yrs. 2018-2019 would be that 10 yr Mark. If you take into account the proven 7 yr crash cycle and the fact that banks only gave a couple more years to perpetrate the charade something huuuuuuge is right around the corner. Shouldn’t homes and equity prices be reflecting this? We all know what’s coming so why everyone isn’t converting their assets to cash as fast as possible is very confusing.

    • Not to mention that’s around the time that early Boomers will be heading off to retirement.

      • That all started about 5 years ago. I’m a Boomer (born 1948), and I retired in 2013.My wife (Chinese) and I moved to her beautiful home city of Qingdao in China. I see so many false generalizations, false assumptions, and just totally wrong ideas about China written here. I doubt that any of the people have spent any time in China. I don’t know where they get their “information”. American TV, the American press, and most of the internet is just trash and propaganda.

    • I don’t think there is any public information about this. This is going to blow up big time once all of those houses come back into the market. One of the issues I think is that the time frame you mentioned is accurate only if the houses were actively being foreclosed on so the houses that are sitting in limbo haven’t started the time counter yet. I could be wrong but it’s probably a loop hole the banks are going to exploit to its fullest.

    • I don’t think anyone has that info handy.

      BUT, a lot of those houses were sold in bulk to investment companies and *never hit the market*. I have a feeling there is a huge scam going on here. Derivatives on the rent from those houses are sold on the stock market. However, a lot of those houses are not being rented out. Here in N. Ca. I’ve been trying to buy for 2 years and following just a little of who owns what. Several LLCs have bought houses which are just sitting there rotting.

      Now some of them are being dumped- but the buyers are other LLCs and large investment companies who are buying for pennies on the dollar. These houses never hit the market.

      By the time they do hit the market there won’t be much left to them. Abandoned houses rot fast. I’ve looked at many rotting houses.

    • Doctor, this is a good question. Can you please research this question: how many foreclosures are kept off the market via market manipulation? How many more are still in limbo and have not gone through the whole foreclosure process?

  • Really sad about the people in the community not wanting a Veterans cemetery due to their weird cultural superstitions. This is America and the land is on a former military base. I’m sure the Irvine company will cater to the rich Chinese since that is who is lining their pockets.

    • It’s extremely sad. I really don’t like how Irvine will cater to foreigners to chase the dollar instead of doing the right thing. Maybe if they put the cemetery in, the nearby homes can become an Americans’ enclave. Irvine will probably outlaw displaying the flag so as not to offend potential buyers next.

    • Alex in San Jose

      Fine. Put the cemetary right across from their house. Hold funeral services there often. They don’t like it, they can leave.

  • From the million’s, and know these are not estate homes with double gate, u drives, and rider mower property . Matter of fact, most of these from the millions (palaces??) have 19 ft. driveways which mean your 4 door car overlaps on the sidewalk.

    The gall of builders and the stupidity of the buyers, do I really care when the whole thing blows up and they are in soup lines waiting for you guess it “egg drop soup?”

  • TrI Pointe is building out the old Navy base on Alameda…same thing…it’s across the Webster tube from Chinatown in Oakland. Asking 1.1 million etc.

    Lots of Filipinoa.

    Lots of traffic unfortunately there is no additional capacity through the two lane tunnel. It’s a mess if you don’t leave by 7am. One stalled car….because the rich Asian seem to but crap cars…the tunnel turns to gridlock.

    • The old Navy base? Really? I thought it was still contaminated.

      • You might be thinking of parts of Treasure Island. But the west end of Alameda is totally being built up. We just got a 24hr Safeway and in n out…Faction Brewery…and at least a couple hundred million dollar townhouses by TriPointe surrounding a beautiful new Target.

  • I was in Japan a few weeks ago. Chinese dominate tourism there. But with the worldwide slowdown I predict they will get lit much like the Japanese did in the 90s. We’re not buying nearly as much of their junk as we used to and the countries that sold raw materials to them like Canada and Australia are already feeling the pain – just check their currencies. Note that Canadians were huge buyers of real estate in the US – Canadian buyers account for the majority of purchases in the past year in Hawaii and Manhattan. I’m sure many of them bought in the southwest as well in order to escape their winters. Much of that will get unwound.

  • “quantitative easing efforts taken by the U.S. and European Union to support their economies”

    pot meet kettle, WTF!! do we live in opposite world or what? the Chinese have printed more money than all the central banks combined!!

    but what i find interesting is the Chinese are printing Yaun like crazy and then taking that money and buying up real assets all over the USA…..pricing out the people who actually live here.

    please, somebody make the insanity stop!!!

    • Interestingly, Australia has had the same problem and now foreign nationals have to pay a surcharge for real estate, and I believe are only allowed to purchase new homes. This action was taken to try to level the playing field for Australian’s who are being shut out of their own market.

  • How do you guys they’re Chinese immigrants and not Chinese Americans buying homes? After all, Asians are ranked #1 in Household income…..

    • son of a landlord

      Some of the people here have mentioned Chinese in Irvine who barely speak English. And a blog in China, written in Chinese, that listed Irvine houses. So there are good signs that many of these are recent immigrants.

    • Yes, we are Chinese who reside in California. We are not Americans. That is why the agents of the government of China has authority over us, especially when there is relatives in the PRC. For the Chinese here, never doubt the authority of the agents of the government to invite you back for investigation of corruption. The Ministry of Justice is aware of the illegal activities of those that hide their corrupt wealth in real estate.

    • They could be wealthy Korean Americans or Japanese Americans or hapa (half white half Asian) who bought in the 80’s or 90’s

  • I have a friend who is a broker in OC and when she takes American buyers through Irvine looking at homes, they usually opt to buy in Laguna Niguel or Lake Forest instead.

    • Yeah lake forest is still mostly white. Just don’t tell the Asians. White people moved out of Cerritos when it got too Asian. Same thing in Fullerton and other places

    • If you mean “white buyers” when you say “American buyers” prefer Laguna Niguel and Lake Forest over Irvine, you should come right out and say so, so that your racist attitudes conflating “American” to mean “white” should be clear to all who read this board.

      • Hotel California

        This everything is “racist” bullshit is so beyond old at this point.

      • I think Kk would find more play on this “race card” on a different forum than this. Why are you hell bent on turning this into a racial bias. There could be some element of latent mild “xenophobia” being expressed, but it is pretty tame and mostly people questioning a housing market that has been hijacked by globalization, QE around the world, flight to safety and loads of hot money flowing in from some pretty corrupt nations. It is a situation that any tax payer starts looking askance at.

        Especially when we have welcoming borders for investors or families of visa holders. We have a pretty large welcome mat, and that is another topic entirely. (I exclude poor migrant workers from criticism, as they give more than they take by in large.) Food for thought — there are whole swaths of South Asian elderly parents (middle and upper class included) who immigrate or wish to and who consult amongst selves and online about how to apply for Medicaid/medi-cal because all their assets are oversees and not so traceable. Call me critical, but I think that sorta stinks.

      • Billybob from Fontana

        Europeans settled America and built up the country with the help of Africans that came here to work, to what it is, the magnet for all third world people. Today, if the Euro and African Americans would be racist, they could discourage some of the third world people coming and taking the welfare away from our Black folks and poor whites. Tyrone is very upset with the central American MS 13 kids coming here and using his welfare dollar that was meant for his people. He says to build the wall. Building the wall would mean jobs for us, so I am in favor of that. Forget that XL pipeline from Alberta. Tar sands pollutes.

      • I’m Asian, and it is irksome to me the racial stereotypes that are expressed here, but it is a product of scapegoating “the other” and the fear that a lot of white middle class and working folk have about the loss of their white majority status and the concomitant financial and social benefits. It partially explains why Trump has been so successful with his race-baiting demagoguery. But all in all, I’m sure white folk in general still prefer Asian neighbors to the “dreaded” black, Latino, or “dark” skinned people. I’m not sure if that still includes Greeks and Italians or people who get a lot of sun, maybe it does. Frankly, I think Asian folk probably feel the same way. Who’s worse? The obnoxious Chinese and Indian nouveau riche who are looking to get out of their overcrowded, polluted and corrupt home countries or the latently racist middle class white folk here to greet them? Who knows, most people are naturally xenophobic, irrational and selfish. That’s just human nature. I think the older you get the more you just don’t care. Just find me a bigger house with wider and longer setbacks and a higher fence and everything should be fine.

      • Alex in San jose

        Dean, essentially they want to flood in here and turn parts of the USA into same kind of disease and crime ridden crspholes they came from, displacing people who built this country and know a little bit about hygiene and hard work. They are here to invade and to game the system. Plain and simple. Not racism, fact.

      • Alex,
        Go get a job and stop posting on a housing site where you spew bs and know little of the housing market, economics, credit and everything else.

        Go get some cheese to go with your constant whine

      • Dean and cd: Sometimes, the truth hurts. Alex is absolutely correct with regard to some faction of the Asian population; I don’t know exactly how large that faction is, but it’s undeniably there. The women who come here to pop out an anchor baby and fly back to China, only to come back with their kid a few years down the line, aren’t looking to invade and to game the system? How about the cash-based businesses that Asians seem to be so fond of? Think they’re paying taxes? How about the racist attitude of many first-generation Chinese and Korean people toward white/black/Mexican people? I have first-hand experience with all of these things- they clearly exist, and they are prevalent.

        Asians aren’t the only ones guilty of the foregoing. However, that doesn’t mean we should put our blindfolds on and pretend that these issues don’t exist.

        To be completely fair, an Asian guy owns one of the companies that I work with. He’s exceedingly intelligent, and is one of the most ethical and fair people I’ve worked with. If all Asians (or all people for that matter) were like him, I highly doubt people would have much of a problem with Asian people.

  • Been living in Irvine since 1989, live in the Quail Hill Area of Irvine since 2004 and since 2011 it has been a boom from Chinese Buyers

    Irvine Median Income single is 98K and family is 110K but to buy a home in Irvine with 20% down you need 127K

    The China Impact for Irvine

    You can see why purchase applications are having the worst 2 years ever once you adjust it to population both in 2014 and 2015

  • I live in Irvine and have seen these new homes. Inside, they are great, indoor/outdoor living, large islands in the kitchens, plenty of bedrooms, mother-in-law suites, but for over a million dollars you are living right on top of your neighbors. Irvine is now heavily Chinese, even more than when I moved here a few years ago. And we are not talking Chinese-Americans, they are China Chinese (also a lot of pregnant Chinese women). Also, in the model homes, my wife and I noticed a lot of the “family photos” were of Asian families. The builders know who they are selling to. I don’t have an issue with the Chinese, these are simply things I’ve noticed happening. I live in an older part of Irvine and every time a house goes up for sale, we wonder who our new Chinese neighbors will be.

  • Personally, I prefer egg rolls to burritos or curry. Seriously!

    • I’d take KFC, Pizza, Tacos, enchiladas, and hamburger…. over some nasty eggrolls or some breaded skinned cat sold to me as orange chicken or kung pao cat..

  • Do we want a nation of renters or home owners. We should get all investors out of the single family market. Investor have plenty of opportunities in the multi-unit housing market. In this way single family home prices will reflect the purchasing power of the people that want to live in the home. Repeal all tax code laws that concern the rental market of single family houses. This will make it less profitable to own and rent out a single family home. Investors will buy and build more multi unit housing. This change in tax policy will help families buy affordable single family housing more than anything else.

    • Excellent idea! I’ve been preaching this to my family and circle of friends for years. Why should “investors” or speculators be able to buy multiple SFHs or even town homes/condos? Why should hedge funds be able to buy 1000s of properties and banks hold inventory off the market? How is this beneficial to our communities? Let owner-occupiers buy property. Change the tax code and laws and let “investors” buy apartment buildings or invest in businesses that produce jobs.

      • this is not about community or doing the right thing. This is Pottersville done large. Because of FASB 157 and 158 suspension, bankers worked out deals with PE and hedgies and most likely get some of the FED income for keeping the houses for 5 years before selling.

        Build them reserves folks…

    • Alex in San jose

      A lot of the Western European countries with a much higher standard of living than the USA are essentially nations of renters. But, because they are racially homogenous to a great degree, they have regulations that help the regular people oiut a lot. Maternity leave, single payer medical, great schools, free college, job training also free for those not interested in going to college. They are paradises compared to the USA for the working and middle class.

      Whereas in the USA our oligarchs are allowing invasions of highly dissimilar people so we can all fight like cats in a sack.

  • When this thing hits housing in some markets may sell for zero.

    • Jim’s greatest hits:

      “Housing to tank hard in 2012”
      “Housing to tank hard in 2013”
      “Housing to tank hard in 2014”
      “Housing to tank hard in 2015”
      “Housing to tank hard in 2016”

      If and when the market does tank, Jim will say, “I told you so.”

  • like I profess, check carefully when you move to another state. Take Austin, Tx, traffic, taxes doesn’t lend itself to a quality life, and here is the big stat, one that no town wants, the murder rate in Austin up a whopping 85%!

    • The murder rate in Austin went up due to all the Yankees moving there. If you are packing(open carry law just signed, so murder rate will go down) like most old timers, we have no fear. Austin is east Texas and has humidity, unlike the dry climate of SoCal and west Texas. Bugs like hot and humid. No, I think that a lot of California people would be more happy moving to Porkland OR. instead of “keep it weird” Austin.

  • Prices going up on luxury houses DO affect all of us. People who can’t afford them look in other price brackets. This floods those brackets and those who would usually buy there look lower. Etc etc.

    Just as people who would usually buy in an urban area where there are jobs look outside those areas, driving those prices up. The others who can no longer afford it move further out. Etc etc.

    And RE is psychological. Joe Blow looks at a piece of crap selling for 1.2 million and decides his house MUST be worth more than it is worth.

    We need restrictions like Australia has. No foreign residential investment whatsoever except new construction. And the same sorts of financial audits and banking accountability/reporting that US citizens must go through on any large cash investment. We are encouraging rich criminals. Rich criminals = powerful sociopaths. I so much prefer working class immigrants as neighbors. I like people who care about other people.

  • son of a landlord

    I think just about everyone KNOWS that “not all Asians are Chinese.” Or that “not all Latinos are Mexicans” yada, yada.

    But some people love playing Captain Obvious and pointing it out. They hope that such observations make them sound worldly and sophisticated, and non-racist.

    “Oooo, see how sophisticated I am! I know there’s a difference between Chinese and Japanese!”

    I don’t know kk’s race. But showboating one’s expertise on foreign racial distinctions is one of those Stuff That White People Like. It’s related to stuff like:

    • “I think just about everyone KNOWS that “not all Asians are Chinese.” Or that “not all Latinos are Mexicans” yada, yada.”

      Ha, you’d be surprised…

      • Hotel California

        Most people do know, it’s just that a lot of them don’t care to understand nor recognize the differences. That drives PC race baiters crazy.

      • Alex in San jose

        So are you Japanese, or Chinese?

        I’m Laotian!

        Spare you Japanese, or Chinese?

        Cotton walks up and looks closely…. He’s Laotian.

        Man I love that show.

  • Hello, I’m writing here to ask you a question. I recently started to have interest in HUD homes. There are paid HUD home list sites. They charge 40-50 bucks per month. I also looked at the government HUD site. What I found is that the paid sites have a lot more houses. So my question is: Are they reliable? Or do they have false listings to lure people? Thank you in advance for your response.

    • Sophie…They are not reliable, many of these HUD homes are all ready sold or off the offcial list save the $50 a month.

  • All Asians look alike and all black people look alike to cops – dave Chappelle

    All you Asians need to take a chill pill

    It’s a socio-economic thing not a racial thing on this board

  • I find it comical everyone is using Chinese as a scapegoat when Americans are selling they’re homes to multiple foreign investors to whoever has the higher price which in turn, affects the average American family to buy a home, and somehow it’s the foreigner’s fault. lol

      • It’s the same thing with Northwesterners whining about those leaving Cali. If it didn’t pervert home values at the city level, I wouldn’t have a big problem with it. I suppose the powers to be would like to keep this scheme going – increased tax revenue and the bubble keeps on inflating! So, I’ll put blame on them.

    • Alex in San jose

      George, its because white people are not allowed to look out for their own. In fact they have to discriminate against their own. I’ve seen this in companies. Take anyone of any other race, they can only hire and promote their own race and no one blinks an eye. You could tell the race of the head of any department by just looking at even the lowest ranking member of that department.

      At the company no worked for, whites were being systematically harassed, not promoted, given the tiniest raises possible, etc. Once a white department head left, that department would go from being kinda tolerable to intolerable.

      I would love to, if selling a house, be able to select who I sell it to. We should have that power.

      • Alex, your inability to make a good living is your own fault and has very little, if anything, to do with racism against white people. By what you have written, I surmise that you were born in 1962 or thereabouts. There was plenty of work in California for technical workers of all colors in the 1980s and 1990s. You were in Silicon Valley before the massive influx of H1-B visas and offshoring. You were there for the rise of Silicon Valley in the 1980s and the dot-com boom. It’s unfathomable to me that a skilled person would not be able to find good-paying work during those times.

        Furthermore, if you look at the executive management of the technology companies in California, it seems like Caucasians are very well represented and doing just fine. Most venture capital firms are heavily Caucasian, too. And the top-tier companies hire plenty of Caucasian technical workers. Yes, there is a heavy Asian population of technical workers but considering the typical demographics of technical majors in colleges, I’d say that the white people are very, very well represented.

        While I agree with you that the U.S. has had a very bad immigration policy that works against native-born Americans, it is not so bad as to put supposedly smart Americans like you into a situation where you make less than $20,000 per year, which is what I gather what you earned this year based on one your postings here.

        Your problems right now are:

        1. You’re 53 years old (assuming I’m correct about 1962 being your year of birth) and there is rampant ageism in technology. This isn’t fair and it isn’t right (or legal) but this is what many foolish companies believe.

        2. You seem to complain about things in a way that twist the facts and makes it look like you’re looking to blame someone else for your lack of success. Some people might view your attitude as racist, which further makes it difficult for you to succeed. If not that, you come off as a whiner that people would get sick of very, very quickly.

        3. Perhaps you’re just not as smart as you think you are? For certain, you have written things here which are factually incorrect. Again, did you somehow not manage to find good paying work in the 1980s and 1990s in Silicon Valley? How did people like Marc Andreessen, Scott Forstall, and the various founders of successful companies ever manage to make it if it’s as bad as you claim?

      • Alex in San jose

        M – not sure if you will see this, but I did not escape Hawaii until 1986, when I was moved to the mainland by the company I worked for.

        You make some very good points. One big mistake I made was the assumption that the company I worked for would educate me and promote me. By the mid eighties, the way to get ahead was to be a ruthless ronin, a samurai for hire, hopping companies constantly. Another weakness on my part was, after living like a onk in my 20ss, working to survive then surviving while doing college, ikind of burned out and got into motorcycles. Take a kid who’s had to take the bus all the time, and they could buy a machine they could ride, and go all over the place!

        I should!d have been staying in at home e and teaching myself embedded programming UNIX, yadda yadda.

        I’ll be the first to admit this.

        The way to make it in tech is you have to love tech. You have to love it so much that your idea of a good time is programming of building g something rather than taking your sweet modified bike over to Wimpi’s for some curly fries. You’ve got to love tech so fucking much you’d do it for minimum wage.

        The guy I work for is like this. Fortunately he makes more than minimum wage, although I feel not as much as he is worth.

        The golden rule in life is, do what you love, expect to be paid peanuts, then if you get paid more than peanuts, its a nice surprise.

        My BIGGEST mistake was, straying from what is was raised and destined to do, art. I blame Carl Sagan and a bunch of old duffers who told me electronics was great because it was for them in the fifties.

        And of what use is my hapless tale? Just this, if your kid is in love with some skill or trade or occupation that seems like a bad choice, encourage them and support them, because in another 30 years it might be the hot ticket, and even if its not, they’ll be happy.

  • Another issue is the number of homeowners who owe more than their home is worth. I see a significant number of homeowners with low interest loans for home improvements from their state and from the federal government. When you add in all the loans for upgrades to the house for efficiency – they owe considerably more than the home is worth. Simply looking at what people owe for their mortgage significantly underestimates the number of people who owe more than their home is worth.

  • Perfect weather

    More perfect weather nothing like living the dream with 100 degree temps in Los Angeles in October!

    • It’s always hot in October here. It doesn’t really cool off until November.

    • For the past few years, Summer temperatures have increased and extended father into the Fall. The weather premium to justify the ridiculous prices in So Cal is slowly melting away.

  • Jorge in Loma Linda

    Are Chinese just taking advantage of the same loophole in US like in Canada and not paying any income taxes when they migrate they kids and mistresses?

  • So here is a one million dollar question for those who are retired and looking to buy a house: Where in California is a great area to buy a home for a retired couple in their sixties?

  • Just make it illegal for now natural born citizens to buy real estate here – DONE!

  • Are you taking on new patients?

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