Wednesday, November 7, 2007

11/7/07 E-newsletter

In BOICE MAIL this week...

"Pic" of the week:

3-D sidewalk painting: This is one of talented artist, Kurt Wenner’s sidewalk drawings done with colored chalk. Born in Ann Arbor, Michigan, Mr. Wenner did his first commissioned mural at age 16. This one has been dubbed “Dante’s sidewalk”. To learn more, go to

Headline Mortgage News:

WAMU and eAppraiseIT accused of pushing values. New York attorney general files a lawsuit. Same old thing, just bigger players? See this Seattle Times article:

Top 10 “Great American Towns” – According to CNN Money, Fort Collins, Colorado is number one. Find out why and who the other 9 are:

A bright side to the housing bubble bust: This LA Times article points out that “lower housing prices could keep businesses from leaving the region because their workers could afford to buy houses”.,1,2411436.story?coll=la-news-comment&ctrack=1&cset=true

Will shareholders boot Beazer Homes CEO? The stock is down almost 80% this year and this Forbes article quotes a shareholder advisory group accusing McCarthy of “the most stunning leadership failure in the entire homebuilding industry”.

Credit ratings slide for major home builders. S&P pummels the industry according to this Forbes article:

IndyMac reports a 203 million dollar quarterly loss. This is a sharp contrast to one year ago when IndyMac posted an 86 million dollar profit. Late payments and reduced investor demand are blamed. Check out this MSNBC article:

Greenspan recommends reducing home inventory. “get rid of probably 200,000-300,000 excess units in inventory” he says. Refer to this CNN Money article:

Thought for the Week:

"To be cheerful about 2000, consider only this. Of the 30 major elections that will be held, 16 will be in countries that 25 years ago were dictatorships."
"The World In 2000", published by "The Economist"

Trouble “brewing” for the landlord; this photo was taken in an Ogden, Utah townhouse shortly after the tenant moved out. Other than an apparent strong affinity for Coors Light, this guy was described as an excellent tenant. Believe it or not, this photo was taken after some of the cans had already been removed and the tunnel system for navigating from room to room had been collapsed. It is estimated there were 70,000 empty cans in the home. The tenant had deliberately shut off the water to the townhouse. Why not? He certainly wasn’t dying of thirst!

How to keep more of your own paycheck:

We just sent our oldest son to college and almost had to get a second mortgage just to pay for the text books! A great way to lower those costs is to buy used textbooks online at some of the following sites:,,,,,, and are all good sites for this purpose. Amazon is also doing big business selling college text books, and there are some British book websites that offer science textbooks for about 40 percent off the domestic price (even when you factor in the cost of international shipping.) Don't buy your books before class starts. Go the first day and ask your professor if you can buy a prior edition and try to find it used.

And now, for this week's fun freebies!


Tylenol - Printable Coupon $5 on off


Free burger on your birthday at Red Robin restaurant

20/20 Research is recruiting individuals to participate in a 1.5-hour online focus group taking place on Thursday, November 15th. Each participant will be mailed a webcam with set-up instructions for use in the online streaming video discussion group…and can keep the webcam (valued at $50). The $75 honorarium will be mailed at the conclusion of the group discussion

And finally, Appraise That!

This “tree house” is suspended by cables. One of the most unique houses ever, it must be exciting on a windy day. This model is called the “Free Spirit Sphere” and it is rumored to cost between $100,000 and $250,000 if you are interested. It is made from laminated wood and seems a bit “pricy” for a 8 foot wide home with no bathroom. More photos below.
To see more photos, etc go to

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