Saturday, May 3, 2008


Greetings. Welcome to one of Charlottesville, Virginia's newer blogs, concerned with the local and national Real Estate Bubble.

As our blog description tells you, we're

"A marketwatch for the "big" season of May-August 2008, compiled by C'villians who aren't attempting to sell you anything. For bemusement purposes only, it's a small contribution to the zeitgeist. We welcome your input, especially when you want to tell us why we're wrong."

We're interested not only in the local and national housing bubbles and collapse of the housing market, but also the impact on the local and national economies. Obviously we're interested in the "credit" crisis and (criminal?) mortgage "products," but also defaults, foreclosures, displaced families.

Besides the tragic consequence of losing a house, declining values impact many more mortgageholders, those who find themselves "under water," owing more than the house is worth, which number nationally is, May 08, many millions of mortgageholders. 70% of the United States economy is comprised of consumer spending. When housing values decline, people owe the bank, HELOCs are due, the house-as-ATM-machine idea disappears.

We're interested in how all this is going to affect affordable housing, realistic housing valuation, future mortgage writing, consumer spending, employment, urban planning, the tax base, city services--and, of course, politics during this election year. We're also concerned, with good reason, that the current Economy is going to render the United States the "former" Leader of the Free World.

Additionally, we're fascinated by the idea that many locals believe Charlottesville is a "protected" market, due to the presences of the University of Virginia and National Ground Intelligence Center, plus the influx of "outsider" cash (including trust funds) and land speculators: and therefore don't believe the crises beyond the borders of Albemarle County have anything to do with us.

Each week we'll feature individual existing properties, typically avoiding new construction. Most of the properties will be in the City, but some will be in the County. We'll link to local news and blogs. We'll offer links to national news sources and blogs.

Our blog is "anonymous" because we're not experts--and because it's not about "us." Sure, it's about presenting opinions, "facts," and "information" that you probably won't find in the local news media or, for that matter, on local RE blogs. But it's not "personal." We know there are many out there in Our Fair City who think as we do: they just don't have the extra hour or seven per week to manage a blog.

We will tell you this, though: While the blog will be primarily written by one or two voices, others will have regular input. We are college educated, and some of us took graduate degrees; we're native and imported; some of us are single, some are married with children. Among us are homeowners, renters, and at least one impatient prospective buyer waiting to see a glimmer of the "bottom." Within our ranks are a far-left liberal and a blood-red conservative, plus some folk in the middle.

We welcome your input. Please email us at While emails technically become the "property" of Real C'ville, we will do our best to respect your request to publish/not publish a point or query, and to do it, if you request, "blind."

We look forward to seeing you at the Open Houses.

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