I am an appraiser ...
I am also a Real Estate Broker and Home Inspector
All "dirty words" in today's economy and economic climate
Obviously - I think a LOT about the current "melt down" and yes - in some ways - I do feel a tad bit responsible - only in so far as I am associated with and practice in the very industry that is being held accountable for the current state of affairs
Back in 2005 I was telling people that exactly what DID happen was going to ...
No one would listen
Sellers were THRILLED to be getting "top dollar" for their homes - even if the "knew" they were "over charging"
Buyers were ECSTATIC about getting financed up to 125% of the purchase price and no one was complaining about the "tiny little white lies" going on their credit applications
Mortgage Brokers were having a field day closing loans hand over foot - all of them commission based of course with large additional fees being added on and paid up front
Then there were the Real Estate Salespeople ...
In an over active market they were working round the clock to accommodate all the business opportunities they could
Entre the "Investors" and "Speculators" ... "flippers" who gauged the market even more - buying and turning the sale just as fast as they could - often times even before the ink had dried.
Unlike so many other appraisers my work load and volume was NOT picking up
Because I REFUSED to participate in the questionable business practices that were making people "get rich quick"
I sat back and watched ... mostly in horror - ostracized from the very activity that I had come to love and know so well.
I did have a steady stream of work ... mostly from my conservative devoted clientele who had been working with me for years
I paid my bills but that was all
Now - as I look around me at the deluge and carnage I feel both sad and vindicated.
Who will pick up the tab ?
If anyone is so blind as to think that the Government bailouts are going to resolve even the tip of the iceberg they are sadly mistaken
Someone - somewhere - is going to have to swallow a very nasty pill and eventually it is going to have to trickle down to the "average joe" to absorb
Most of those responsible will never be held accountable
Oh - there will be the occasional witch hunt and public offering - and I feel sorry for those who are going to be used and hung out to dry in such an ugly fashion - but - by and large - the guilty will go unpunished
In fact - they will continue to prosper - as they always do - at "our expense"
Do I have a solution ?
But that will be left for another time and blog
I am more interested in watching the current field of reaction