My cover got blown in some Temecula model homes

User Forum Topic
Submitted by temeculaguy on August 5, 2007 - 3:48pm

So I go out to some model homes to see if the cancellations are up with the credit crunch and to narrow down my choices of which ones to stalk for standing inventory as we move toward the end of the year. I go visit one of my finalists from my favorite builder and have a few questions for the sales person. During a five minute conversation she is extremely honest about the market and is easily the most realistic and personable salesperson I have met. She says "do you go on the housing blogs?" I respond that I read piggington and she imediately says with a smile "do you post as Temeculaguy?" In a split second I lie and deny it because I'm not so sure how much of my buying strategy can be gleaned from my posts and it is possible I will be buying from this person in the future. I know she will read this and I should have just fessed up but I was taken aback to find that someone could identify me in five minutes. It felt like having an annonymous online romance with someone only to find out by chance it is your co-worker at the next desk, wasn't that the plot to "you've got mail."

Has anyone else ever been identified in the real world?

Submitted by JWM in SD on August 5, 2007 - 4:00pm.

Not yet, but I suspect it will happen soon enough. Boy they are really going to hate me....

Submitted by Allan from Fallbrook on August 5, 2007 - 4:25pm.

JWM: Hey, we ALL know you're the guy downtown with the ZZ Top beard and sandwich board sign reading "The End is Nigh!".

Submitted by Drew on August 5, 2007 - 4:30pm.

Not quite the same situation, but I had a similar experience.

I was sitting in my office at work and a fellow employee (same company, but we don't work directly with each other) that sits two offices down from me stopped by to chat about something work related. I can't recall exactly how the conversation came up, but we began discussing his home being in escrow (he was the seller).

After a few minutes of explaining that I had done the same last summer and my thoughts on the current housing situation, he asked me if I had ever heard of Ironically, I had it minimized on my desktop, as I had just posted a topic, so I maximized it and said, "of course!", and that it was one of the key factors in my decision to sell!

Before this conversation, we had probably only interacted a few times, and now we chat at least once or twice a week about housing, heh. I respect the desire to remain anonymous, so I'll let him fess-up to being my co-worker if he reads this thread :)

Submitted by temeculaguy on August 5, 2007 - 5:43pm.

Wow Drew, the odds of that are astronomical. I wonder how many page views there are here, there only seems to be a couple hundred posters.

Submitted by SD Realtor on August 5, 2007 - 5:46pm.

There are alot of people that view the site but do not post. I was identified at an open house by the listing agent a few months ago. The site is pretty popular.

SD Realtor

Submitted by temeculaguy on August 5, 2007 - 6:06pm.

Sd I would almost expect that you would get identified because you are in the industry and it it has a networking element to it, plus you've shared some past experiences, even without the details I think a peer of your would figure it out.

Now I think the media is stealing story ideas from this and other sites, eveytime I read some tidbit or rumor on these threads there is a story a day or two later in the media, it's probably not the case but it just keeps happening.

There are threads here for weeks claiming that zero down will go away, jumbo's are in trouble and a few e-mail exerpts posted from insiders, bam, 2 hours ago msn breaks a story that could have been taken from here last week. HMMMNN

Submitted by JWM in SD on August 5, 2007 - 6:43pm.

Temecula Guy,

I suspect there are 5 to 10 blogs that the media is regularly lurking at including this one. I first got tipped off to that over a year ago when Jon Lanser at the OC Register approached Ben Jones to invite his regular posters to ask a series of questions about the housing market in OC. After that point, Lansers news stories started to become more bearish to point that his bloggers were complaining about how Lanser only published bad news. Fast Forward to February / March: the Suprime Implosion of New Century. All of the sudden Mathew Padilla shows up on the OC Register RE site and is chronicling the Subprime Meltdown and now there are no more permabull posters on OC Register RE blogs anymore. They are extinct.

Here are the sites that I think the MSM is following/lurking at:

Ben Jones Housing Bubble
Calculated Risk
Mish Shedlock
Housing Panic
Bubble Market Inventory Tracking or BMIT

How do you think Cramer was rattling off all of his nonsense this week. Hell, he sounded more like me than I do with the exception of the rate reduction bull crap.

Submitted by bob007 on August 5, 2007 - 7:34pm.

why should you tell that you read the housing blogs ?

Submitted by temeculaguy on August 5, 2007 - 8:16pm.

JWM, thank you that was insightful. I guess I underestimated my little hobby, thinking it was an electronic modern day barbershop only interesting to those of us participating in it.

bob, I didn't have to tell her that I read them but what's the harm in it really? In most cases it is probably better that the salesperson knows they have an informed buyer regardless of what they are selling, like a guy walking onto a car lot with his internet printed invoice price. I only divulged it after a conversation where she sounded like one of us anyway, no b.s. or plattitudes, just some honest answers much like the two sdrealtors, bugs, rustico, HLS and a few other people connected to the biz usually give. It could have been a ploy to play to the buyer (if it was it worked) but I doubt it, my line of work is about reading people and their motivations and I got a good read so I would prefer to do business with someone like that (of course the price isn't where i think it is going just yet, but compared to others it's getting closer). With the credit crunch I think the down cycle just got a shot of steriods and the knife may fall faster than anticipated so I am finding out what exactly I want and who I wan't to do business with for when time does come.

Submitted by JWM in SD on August 5, 2007 - 8:34pm.

"JWM, thank you that was insightful. I guess I underestimated my little hobby, thinking it was an electronic modern day barbershop only interesting to those of us participating in it."

No problem. I'll go one step further with this. I have long suspected that some of the trolls and newbies who still occasionally post here are really the MSM. Think about it. If you had to report on this story recently, these sites would make your job really easy as a reporter. If you wanted to get some opinions on what the bloggers think then what better way than to ask a stupid question or one that is obviously wrong headed. You would get a barrage of responses that would range from helpful to confrontational (me mostly).

These housing blogs are a treasure trove of information on a really complicated subject and they have a lot credibility right now for having made a lot of correct calls on the RE market.

Submitted by Allan from Fallbrook on August 5, 2007 - 8:42pm.

JWM: You're also presupposing that print and electronic media journalists have the intelligence to pose a leading question in order to solicit a reasoned response. Might be a little bit of a reach there, amigo.

Having watched Katie Couric discuss everything from the war in Iraq to global warming, I have a wee smidgen of skepticism as regards the ability of journalists to formulate any sort of coherent thought.

And after reading much of what passes for news in such propaganda/party organs as the UT, I wonder if the people "reporting" the news would be able to frame it in the proper context and report it fairly.

Not to sound overly harsh, but lately it has been a little like reading "Pravda" when it comes to unbiased reporting about RE, the credit situation or underlying market factors.

Of course, "Pravda" did have those great political cartoons. And those really good borscht recipes.

Submitted by temeculaguy on August 5, 2007 - 8:54pm.

C'mon Alan, it's not that bad. I think the MSM is starting to turn, they are just late to the party that's all. They are just gearing up for those heart felt people lost their homes due to unscrupulous (insert villian here) stories. CNBC's Diana Olick's realty check seems to be fairly accurate to me, I just checked out her video clips and articles on their website and I would call her unbiased, occasionally holding back laughter when she repeats spokeshole reports from the NAR, etc.

Submitted by Allan from Fallbrook on August 5, 2007 - 9:04pm.

Temeculaguy: Okay, maybe I was slightly harsh, but only slightly.

Don't you get more than irritated listening to the incessant bloviating from some overpaid, blow dried, insipid talking head?

I'll make a point of checking out Diana Olick (professionally speaking, of course) on CNBC.

I don't know why, but for some reason Katie Couric really chaps my hide. Not as bad as Rosie O'Donnell, but she's close.

Submitted by temeculaguy on August 5, 2007 - 9:24pm.

Alan you have to get a remote control or TVIO. I've gotten this far on the planet with about a combined seven minutes of total intake of the two combined. I'm hoping to only have another 2-3 minutes of Rosie for the rest of my life and am wearing a clip on meter like people who work with x-rays to alert me if my exposure limits are violated.

Submitted by Allan from Fallbrook on August 5, 2007 - 9:34pm.

TG: I do have TiVo. The problem is, I use it to record HBO and Showtime movies and all of the "Law and Order" shows I can handle.

I do not watch the news (right wing or left wing), and cannot stomache regular television programming.

Not to sound overly harsh towards either Couric or O'Donnell, but if I were to wake up tomorrow and find that both had been struck by the same fortuitous lightning bolt, I would shrug and get back to my Yoplait and the WSJ.

I like the radiometer idea, though. That has definite merit.

And would you mind thinning out some of the population of Temecula while you are at it? I need to go to Costco and those flipping crowds are killing me!

Submitted by greekfire on August 5, 2007 - 9:57pm.

Boy, what a time to be a journalist! Wake up, read the blogs, do some more internet research (errr Google searches), make a few phone calls, and write a story. What a job!

Submitted by PerryChase on August 5, 2007 - 11:17pm.

I can't stand Kouric. She was supposed to bring an empathetic style to primetime news and revive CBS' ratings. But the ratings have fallen further. No surprise there. I hope that it won't be long before they move her to another show. She sounds very phony to me.


Kelly Bennett who writes the housing column for Voice of San Diego sometimes posts on Piggington.

Submitted by Allan from Fallbrook on August 5, 2007 - 11:37pm.

The worst part about Couric is that she isn't very intelligent or particulary well read. She adopts this very patronizing style that I find really abrasive, especially given the fact that she is an intellectual lightweight.

When she pronounced the science "settled" on global warming, well, that did it for me.

I have read Bennett's articles on VoSD. They're good.

Maybe it's just me, but I sure would like to see a return to good, solid print journalism. Good research, thoughtfully presented and without bias. Here is the news, and free of prejudice or slant or angle.

I'm probably showing my age, huh?

Submitted by temeculaguy on August 6, 2007 - 12:21am.

Alan, don't get me started on Costco, they need two at least, come to think of it, those of you from the brook and deluz are part of the problem all that money and no stores. There's only 95k people in my hood and it has almost 2.3 billion in retail sales, If it were in S.D. county it would be third behind the city of S.D. and just below Escondido and 23rd in the state, double the sales of comparable sized cities in S.D. Good for city coffers but it sucks trying to park at the store.


Maybe the declining amount of heloc's will allow both of us to find a parking space. As waitinghawk is fond of quoting the movie Braveheart "It's my island, get off my island."

Submitted by Allan from Fallbrook on August 6, 2007 - 7:04am.

TG: I really shouldn't say anything about either Temecula or Oceanside shopping/parking. Everyone from Fallbrook complains incessantly, but we don't do anything about upgrading our stores and resist nearly any attempts to bring any new blood into town.

We are finally getting another grocery store in town (Tesco) and, to listen to about half of the residents, you'd think it was the end of the world. Listening to this bunch, it's equivalent to the fall of Rome.

Speaking of HELOCs and spending: It would be interesting to conduct an informal poll on spending at Costco in Temecula. I'm curious as to what, if anything, has changed.

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