Where other men dare not tread

I just bought a house in Vegas. I can hear your laughs already...I'm the latest in a long line of suckers in this happy charade.

Indeed, the situation does appear somewhat desperate. The house in question sold two years ago for $415,000, and today Countrywide holds a mortgage with an outstanding balance of...let me see here...oh yes, $415,000.

When the current occupants bailed last fall, the bank listed the house at $420k. No offers. $400k, no offers. (This according to the listing agent.) Mind you, this is not a 3-story box on a tiny lot at the fringes of Vegas. To give you an idea, it's single-level, 2100 sq. ft., 3/3, 3-car garage, quarter-acre lot, end of cul-de-sac, quality neighborhood, built 1995.

When the asking price dropped to $380k, I came and offered $360k. The bank was mighty slow to respond, and before long, fretting about further declines, I decided to reduce the offer to $320k.

Countrywide sent out an appraiser, got back a figure of $378k, and...took my offer anyway. I figure by the time this sale gets reported, I'll have single-handedly wiped out a couple million in equity on my street alone. Neighbors are going to love me...say, mind if I shit in your pool, too?

-The Greater Fool

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