Lighter Side Of The Housing Bubble

There’s not much amusing in the subprime meltdown and housing bubble burst, which is why we were gladdened to see a site called Burbed. Basically, they make fun of San Francisco Bay Area housing listings.

There’s the “Detached Single Family Residence” that looks suspiciously like a converted Motel 6 unit, the Re/Max broker who is apparently a Canis lupus, as in, a wolf, at least judging from his For Sale sign, and the “fantastic” three bedroom that “won’t last long” thanks mainly to its “views of the airport.”

Sorta like gofugyourself, except for houses.


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  1. Falconfire says:

    you kidding, I think the bubble bursting is HILARIOUS.

    When people where selling houses that crack dealers wouldn’t live in for 700,000 dollars your HAD to know something was seriously wrong.

  2. burbed says:

    Thanks for linking to Burbed.

    I’m surprised you didn’t show off this beauty:

    Affordable starter home… or Fallujah-replica?

    Your Bay Area readers might also appreciate this link on how to save 17% on buying groceries. (Hint: Move to somewhere cheap like Washington DC or Seattle)

  3. burbed says:

    @Falconfire: There’s no need for hyperbole like that. Houses that are unfit for crack dens only go for about $400k.

  4. Jiminy Christmas says:

    I guess I just don’t understand. Shitholes like that selling for $675,000?

    By way of comparison, a friend’s parents recently sold a house at about that price: 1920s-era, completely modernized/renovated, 3000sf, beautiful wood floors and mouldings throughout, unfinished attic & basement that could add another 2000sf, very desirable neighborhood. The catch: It’s in an absolute hellhole known as Minneapolis.

    That last sentence was snark. Seriously, someone please tell me how San Francisco is so teh awesome it’s worth a $5000 monthly mortgage payment to live in a POS townhouse under a flight path.

  5. bohemian says:

    The Falleujah replica is priceless.

    Burbed makes me feel so much better about my mortgage. It makes living amongst hicks and fundamentalists almost tolerable.

  6. timmus says:

    WTF — the Motel 6 dropped $90K in just a day or two, and the airport view place dropped $24K in a day or two. Is the bottom falling out that quickly?

  7. Trai_Dep says:

    @jrford8: because if the angle is just right, you can see the jumpers pinwheeling off the Golden Gate bridge.

  8. thepounder says:

    These prices just kill me. I’m very thankful to live in an area where the housing prices are – to me anyhow – right where they should be for the size/quality of the property.

    When I’m home I watch far too much HGTV and TLC, so I’m half expecting to someday see the “Fallujah Bungalow” on a home makeover show or one of the “flip this house” type shows. Honestly I don’t think the This Old House crew could help that poor house, and Norm Abram is as near a carpentry deity as is possible.

    About the housing bubble thing I’m curious of the affect, if any, on military towns. I’ve heard that all the building continues to drive as usual around Ft. Hood, and to me it’s not much of a surprise; Soldiers do have a steady and stable income, and are provided with BAH (housing allowance). In addition, many civilians either work on post or support the post in some fashion, so it makes sense to me it’d stay fairly stable as a result. Also, this goes back to the idea that in a smaller community you’re less likely to get shafted by mortgage brokers who you might bump into at church or the grocery store.

  9. spinachdip says:

    @jrford8: At the risk of coming off glib, it’s simple supply and demand.

    San Francisco has more people per capia than the Twin Citie, so naturally, land is more scarce. And then you not only have people making more money as whole, but also a higher percentage of high income earners. SF has more Fortune 500 HQs and top level execs so that drives the price up higher while discouraging developers from offering affordable housing for middle class families.

    And yes, a lot of people do think SF is teh awesome enough to pay $5k/mo on a shithole, whether it’s the restaurants, nightlife, teh gey, proximity to SF-specific amenities, or simply having a “San Francisco, CA” address – you might not find value in such things, but some people do, rightly or not.

    To you, that’s market inefficiency. To someone who’s willing to pay that much, the price is right.

  10. burbed says:

    @spinachdip: Exactly… SF is so desirable and so special that median mortgages are 50.9% of the median income, and that the mortgage/rent ratio is 1.62 – see the full stats here.


    Not only that, but SF is so amazing that prices have soared as incomes and population has gone down in the last 5 years – see the graphs here:


    Nope. Has nothing to do with loose lending standards or bubble buying mentality at all. Nope.

  11. DadCooks says:

    Follow the link to the real MLS listing–the price has been reduced to 699,950! What a steal, better snap it up fast -insert laughter here-!

  12. spinachdip says:

    @burbed: Sweetie, I know you’re excited that your site got Consumeristed, but why dont you take a deep breath before commenting. I never said it had to make sense. Real estate isn’t, and never will be, an efficient market.

  13. shfd739 says:

    Wow.Those are insane prices for crap houses.Here 700k will buy a 2+story dream home. That airport view house would only go for about 150k ish on a good day. Im glad I dont live where housing is nearly unaffordable.

  14. mrgraphics says:

    I know that the prices in SF seem outrageous. And to the outside worl they are . . . but remember: there is no more land there. Its by the coast and surrounded by valleys. But, it never goes over 85 nor under 45 degrees. Its within driving distance of Napa Valley, Monterey, Big Sur, Yosemite Park, and the Redwood forests, just to name a few. SF is a destination that people all over the world just want to VISIT. So you can choose to live in a mansion (which becomes a prison) in Texas where the extent of your cultural exposure is a Satuday trip to the mall while dodging 115 degree heat, or you can go to SFMOMO in 75 degree weather and see the latest Matisse exhibit after dining on freshly caught crablegs. Oh yeah, and you won’t get clubbed over the head at night because you look a little different.

  15. badgeman46 says:

    How on earth can SFO sustain that market? Do they pay fast food workers 100K a year? Do people sell their bodies? Is this a why we should keep the minimum wage low?

  16. descend says:

    spinachdip wrote: “San Francisco has more people per capia than the Twin Citie, so naturally, land is more scarce. “

    I’m pretty sure every city has exactly one person per capita.

  17. descend says:

    spinachdip wrote: “San Francisco has more people per capia than the Twin Citie, so naturally, land is more scarce.”

    I’m pretty sure that every city has exactly 1 person per capita. Naturally.

    I do love these threads when people start claiming that outside of three cities in the US there’s nothing to do except go to the mall and be the victim of a gay-bashing or race crime. Provincially calling everyone else provincial! It’s the hipsters’ version of Russell’s paradox.

  18. kenposan says:

    This is why I live in Ohio.

  19. B says:

    Reasons to live in the SF Bay Area:
    1) It’s 75 and sunny 9 months out of the year.
    2) lots of really nice vineyards.
    3) ….

  20. gibsonic says:

    Wow. Just wow.

    I am trying to sell my 5 year old 1400 sqft house on a 1/4 acre for $141,500 and I am feeling all sorts of market pressure to drop the price even lower!

    We are trying to sell to move to the west coast (Oregon, not cali-shithole-fornia)…this is going to take some doing I can tell.

  21. killavanilla says:

    Reasons to live in SF:
    1) If you hate the military, you’ll fit in
    2) You enjoy wine, but don’t like the idea of living in napa
    3) You don’t mind a little social engineering
    4) You want illegal immigrants to hang out with

    There is nothing like San Francisco – especially when considering that the real estate market is insane, the mayor refuses to comply with federal law, the city wants to undergo social engineering, and they show distaste for our military institutions.
    Not to mention, they pass resolutions against people they don’t agree with, attempting to silence them. mmmm censorship.
    I wouldn’t move to San Fran if they paid me to, bought me a house, and handed me a million in cash.

  22. bambino says:

    @mrgraphics: fucking idiot

  23. burbed says:

    @badgeman46: The idea of income and housing prices having a relationship is so Housing 1.0.

    This is Housing 2.0 – it’s a paradigm shift.

    BTW, there’s alot of PB&J involved.

  24. Trai_Dep says:

    @killavanilla: yeah, we hate our military so much that we want to fund VA to match veteran needs, we want them to be able to speak the truth, we want their wages raised so they don’t need food stamps and, oh yeah, we don’t cotton to lying our way to get 3,500+ of them killed (10x crippled for life) just because some guy wants to strut on an aircraft carrier in a flight suit and codpiece. While destroying our capacity to defend ourselves for generations.

    Yup, we San Franciscans HATE the military. (rolling eyes)

  25. kellyd says:

    I take issue with this comment: “Sorta like gofugyourself, except for houses.” And not funny. And not particularly well-written.

    Plus, I live in SF, and whoever trashes this city (Killavanilla) should know that we don’t want you hear. Not even a little bit.

  26. killavanilla says:

    While I don’t want this conversation to devolve any further, I will say just this:
    San Francisco has a bad rep amongst military personel, vets, and many patriotic americans.
    Here are some reasons:
    1) in San Francisco, you aren’t allowed to recruit in high schools or colleges in the area
    2) People protest the Blue Angels, an inspiring and patriotic display
    3) San Francisco politicians went on record with their opinion that the United States doesn’t need a military
    4) When many vets came back from Vietnam and came home to San Francisco, they were spit on and called baby killers
    and for kellyd
    You don’t want me ‘hear’?
    Fine with me, because that’s precisely what you get.
    Good luck with your local tourist economy with that attitude.
    And good luck with your social engineering experiment. You know, where the white people drive up real estate prices and discourage job creation then wonder why black people are moving away.
    I have relatives who live there – they hate it too. The only reason they live there is that they have good, well paying jobs, and it is pretty.
    They have made it clear numerous times that if they were able to move anywhere else and get the same pay for the same job, they would.
    And I don’t ‘trash’ the city. I object to the politics and general attitude of San Francisco and it’s citizens. The city itself isn’t to blame. It’s the people living there and the policies they support that makes me dislike it.
    Enjoy your city, kellyd.
    It’s all yours. Santa Barbara is much nicer anyway.