5.20.2008

New math

DataQuick: the median Bay Area price is $518,000, and:
The typical monthly mortgage payment that Bay Area buyers committed themselves to paying was $2,309 last month, down from $2,405 the previous month, and down from $3,074 a year ago.

How does that work? Nobody's putting 20% down any more. A 30-year conforming loan is around 5.8%, and people are buying $518,000 houses on $2,309 a month? Assuming 10% down (to be generous), a $518,000 house would be a $466,000 loan costing $2,735 a month. A 5/1 ARM at 5.2% would be $2,560 a month.

What gives? Are we still dealing in negative-amortization option ARMs?

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Milestones

I talk a lot about inflation. But today was the first time in my life I actually used a dollar bill as toilet paper.