Mike Arndt works in the winters as a snowmaking crew foreman at Steamboat Ski Area and a shuttle driver for Pioneer Ridge. Arndt just bought his first townhome in Steamboat Springs with the help of a $6,500 down payment loan from the Yampa Valley Housing Authority

Photo by Matt Stensland

Mike Arndt works in the winters as a snowmaking crew foreman at Steamboat Ski Area and a shuttle driver for Pioneer Ridge. Arndt just bought his first townhome in Steamboat Springs with the help of a $6,500 down payment loan from the Yampa Valley Housing Authority

Housing program thriving in Steamboat

Down payment aid helps longtime renter become a homeowner

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For more information on local housing programs and down payment assistance, call the Yampa Valley Housing Authority’s Mary Alice Page-Allen at 970-870-0167.

— Mike Arndt is a homeowner after 24 years of renting in Steamboat Springs.

Arndt, 49, works in the winters as a snowmaking crew foreman at Steamboat Ski Area and a shuttle driver for Pioneer Ridge. In the summers, he guides raft trips at locations ranging from Alaska and Idaho to Buena Vista. This summer, though, he’s only guiding for one month. The rest of the time, Arndt said, he’ll stay in Steamboat and work on trail crews on Mount Werner. It makes sense for him to stick around — after all, he has a place to stay.

Arndt recently closed on the $130,000 purchase of a 462-square-foot Walton Pond townhome.

He received a $6,500 down payment loan from the Yampa Valley Housing Authority, an amount he said was just about all the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s rural housing program needed for a down payment. His 30-year mortgage through the USDA is at a fixed interest rate of about 4.5 percent, he said. Arndt pays about $620 per month, including homeowner’s association fees, for his home.

That amount is “pretty much what I was paying for rent, constantly,” Arndt said.

And just like that, a man who earns about $25,000 a year owns a market-rate home in Steamboat.

Mary Alice Page-Allen, asset and program manager for the Housing Authority, said Arndt is the first homeowner to close on a home through the new down payment assistance program.

Loans related to four other homes could close in a few weeks, she said. The program began earlier this year with slightly more than $200,000 and has approved loans totaling $88,000 so far.

The starting figure includes a $100,000 contribution from the city, Page-Allen said. An intergovernmental agreement to finalize the use of those funds is on Tuesday’s Steamboat Springs City Council agenda.

Arndt can pay off the down payment loan upon refinancing, selling his home or after 30 years, Page-Allen said.

Arndt credited the Housing Authority; the city’s former community housing coordinator, Nancy Engelken; the USDA; and local Realtor Coleman Cook with helping him find and purchase the home he shares with his dog, Buddy.

“It’s definitely a big load off my mind — it’s just nice to have your own space, and really, not to pay rent anymore,” he said. “Yeah, I have a mortgage, but I’m not giving that money to someone else.”

Comments

Scott Wedel 4 years, 4 months ago

Congrats to Mike. I do not believe that I know him and none of my comments below refer to him. In fact, because he is among the first to use this program, he is probably much better than the average person in this situation and likely to be a great homeowner.

That said, a housing program that provides a 5% down payment to people who have been working for years and are unable to save any substantial amount for a down payment is going to run into problems. There is a reason that lenders have traditionally wanted to see substantial down payments. Lending, of any time, to people that are very highly leveraged is very risky. This borrower is leveraged 20:1 and the 1 came from somewhere else. The 1 is not even enough to handle the cost of a sale if the buyer had to move. If we have learned anything from the housing boom/bust and the resulting financial crisis, these sorts of loans go bad at a far higher rate than standard loans.

If this sort of program had been started 4 years ago then it could be looking at close to a 100% default rate and would now be recognized as having further inflated the boom. Providing all of the down payment is a bad idea for a down payment assistance program. It should probably should require the loan has a minimum of a 10% down and except for the most exceptional circumstances should be limited to matching the buyer's savings for a down payment. A person unable to save a substantial amount for a down is far more likely to face foreclosure at some point. Also, a loan with a 5% down is too easily affected by circumstances to become underwater especially when figuring in sales cost (if the owner had to move).

I absolutely do not begrudge Mike, but this is not how to build a sustainable housing program. This is how to build an unsustainable program.

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snowbirds 4 years, 4 months ago

Amen, Scott!!
In his approx. 25 years of employment, Mike should have been able to have saved a $6,500 down payment -- and, if not, he is NOT ready to be a homeowner. It was this exact same situation that was a huge contributing factor to our current major recession. Elsewhere, regarding census count, thanx for the reminder about all of the second-home addresses in Steamboat. Duh....

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callguinness 4 years, 4 months ago

Can't believe I'm going to drag this off topic, but here we go.

Snowbirds,

You asked a question elsewhere as to why steamboat census counts % seems low. One simple thing to see is that if Scott's numbers are right, that 35-37% are second homes, then our return rate is much higher than it seems. If you do the simple math that leaves us with about a 70% return rate, about the national average, and potentially a little higher. So yes sometimes we all need little reminders, me too.

For anyone who cares, this conversation is all really happening over at http://www.steamboatpilot.com/news/2010/apr/18/our-view-test-community/#comments

Sorry again for the Hijacking of this thread.

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kathy foos 4 years, 4 months ago

If he is dedicated to living here,and works,that fits right in with a needy home buyer.Just because the wages are bare bottom to survive on here, you cant downgrade someone from buying a home because they work and get paid at local wages.It shows his stamina to figure out work and be adaptable.6,500.00 could easily be half of a years wages and with high rent ,you tell me why he should have been able to save that much and eat too?Without money you cant make money,and it seems a few dont want anyone without alot of money to even try to own a home .It takes money to make money,and you would have more renters making slumlords rich and the property owners controlling all of the rent rates and how far the paycheck goes.Good luck ever saving any money when some one raises the rent,owners that rent draw the last drop of cash they can out of you,and will always adjust if times are better.A house payment is cheaper most times than rent.Its just not right to force people into renting by lending practices.

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TWill 4 years, 4 months ago

The down payment assistance and other such "affordable housing" programs are little more than an unneccesary charity that hinders its participants with bureaucracy and financial obligations more than it helps them with the "benefits" of homeownership.

I don't understand why more people don't rent homes in a flat/ declining market. The tenant gets all the rewards of living in Ski Town USA (or anywhere for that matter) with non of the risk. Its really a pretty sweet deal actually (for the tenant).

Have you seen how much and how quickly rental rates have dropped around here? I assure you that "house payments" (ie: mortgage, taxes, HOA, etc.) have not dropped in equal proportion. Who do you think pays that difference? Hint: not the tenant

Guess who carries the burden of insuring, maintaining and repairing the home that is (or isn't) rented? Hint: not the tenant

You're quite mistaken if you think landlords are getting rich in this market. Before you go villanizing landlords, think about who carries all the risk and and has much more to lose overall. Hint: not the tenant

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brian ferguson 4 years, 4 months ago

congratulations mike, and thank you to the yampa valley housing authority, nancy engelken, ect...

most rents for one bedroom condos, even now with "reduced rates" run $800-1000 or more...sounds like mike might be able to save some money now.

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Scott Ford 4 years, 4 months ago

Hi callguinness - Totally off topic but what the hay!?

Again insightful observation. In reality, the census response from occupied homes is likely very close to 70%. Nationally the response rate is currently 69%. Again, although we think we are very special in Routt County we are just like the rest of the nation. Demographically what makes us unique as a county is that as a whole we are a wee-bit older and a lot more affluent.

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Scott Ford 4 years, 4 months ago

Good for Mike for taking advantage of this program. I think one of the key benefits of a program like this is that it helps folks believe that owning their own home is possible. (Not easy but possible.) Sometimes that belief is all it takes for them to take the first steps.

Having said all that, I hope YVHA has some very careful screening and rigorous qualification standards. Realistically Mike has very little if any financial skin in this deal. This program as great as it may be - could be recipe for disaster if offered to the wrong individuals.

Using Mike's situation only as an example, if he looks at this home purchase as a means for providing a stable shelter situation - costing at or near to what he was paying in rent - it works. If he looked at his purchase as an investment (even a little bit in the back of his mind) - if market values drop another 10% to 15% he will be "underwater" for many years to come. Will he stick with it? What is the motivation of the buyer - shelter or investment? That is the question that needs to be sorted out.

I am confident that YVHA can sort that question out because the eventual success of this type of a program depends on it.

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Scott Wedel 4 years, 4 months ago

I think this serves as an instructive local example of the start of the explosion of subprime lending. It is nice that someone with no saved down payment can own a home. But from a lending point of view, loans to people with no money invested have a miserable failure rate. Simple fact is that people with no money invested have little reason to make sacrifices to stay in the property. When people start off with no money in and housing prices do not change much then it takes years of making payments to be able to sell and not OWE money.

But if we make the assumption that housing prices are currently a bargain and housing will go up and up then the borrower will quickly build equity.

Unfortunately, whenever the jobs market gets weak, housing prices also decline. So when a property owner is stressed by lack of work then that coincides with the property value declining as well.

So, in a nutshell, our local YVHA has become a subprime lender. Things will be fine as long as housing prices increase. If prices decline then we should expect high default rates and losing large amounts of money.

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Jon Quinn 4 years, 4 months ago

Mike, congratulations on purchasing your place. Now you have the opportunity to build YOUR equity. I wish you great success.

I just want to clear up a couple of items... Scott Wedel, it is important to note that the YVHA has only helped to fund this real estate purchase with down payment assistance. The principal is financed through the USDA. YVHA is also guaranteed to be paid back at any point when the property is sold or refinanced. This is a revolving loan fund and the dollars which helped Mike buy his house today will hopefully help another long time local buy his or her first place in the future. YVHA is not a sub-prime lender, nor are they contributing to the demise of our financial systems by implementing these programs.

Mike would never have been approved for the USDA loan, or the YVHA down payment assistance program, if he did not jump through significant hoops and demonstrate his credit worthiness. You think financing a home is hard these days... try financing through USDA.

I hope that the YVHA and the City can continue to find ways to help true locals find and keep a foothold in our community. Many kudos to YVHA, Nancy Engelken, and Coleman Cook for working hard to keep Steamboat the kind of town that Mike wants to call his home.

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Scott Wedel 4 years, 4 months ago

Jon Quinn, This is not how to build a sustainable lending program.

Okay, the YVHA is not the primary subprime lender. the USDA took that note as they loaned to 95% of value.

The YVHA is actually in a worse position than any subprime lender. They hold the second lien and are behind 95% of property value.

If the property were sold at same price as purchased then expected net proceed (sales price - commission) would be no more than $126K. So USDA would be paid the $126K and lose $1,500 on the deal. Meanwhile, YVHA receives ZERO and this money is gone. The property has to appreciate for the YVHA to get their money back. In terms of stock market securities, the YVHA spent $6,500 for an out of the money call that pays $6,500 (or with interest?) if the future sales price is above $145K or so.

That is not how you build a sustainable housing program.

Mike is probably a great person and so on. But if the YVHA keeps assisting with down payments to allow buyers to purchase without putting up a chunk of their own money then there will come a downturn in which YVHA sees a whole lot of their money lost.

If you have any doubts then please talk to the lending officer at your bank.

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kathy foos 4 years, 4 months ago

Talk to the lending officer at your bank....I dont have that much time to waste anymore.They lend so little money that they should be called non-loan officers.In fact nothing personal Scott,but maybe you are a repressed banker?In the bank field of non-lending officers ,you could be a real asset.

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Scott Wedel 4 years, 4 months ago

Oh, that's a good plan. Have the YVHA get into the lending of down payments business with an intentional anti-banker bias.

I just did a quick compare of other similar programs. They all had required new homeowner classes. More importantly, the ones that had details online also required the buyer bring in at least a minimum amount of money such as $2K (Longmont County).

If the YVHA wants to give people down payments then go ahead and view it as money gone. But to say that the YVHA is "guaranteed" to get their money back is a flat out lie. A foreclosure or short sale (short sale could be more than current sales price, but just lack the proceeds to pay everyone off) wipe out or greatly diminish the YVHA down. If this loan was from a commercial institution then the borrower would be noted as being in a high risk category.

If there is data showing that people that qualify for government programs default at a far lower rate than the general population then I'd love to see it. That is basically the argument of those that say the money will be repaid. If it was a commercial institution loaning the final 5% of a 100% financed purchase then it'd be considered to be an extremely risk loan. But since a government institution, the YVHA, is loaning the final 5% of a 100% financed purchase then it is guaranteed good. Nice to know that YVHA has figured out how to loan only to people that always pay it back.

YVHA is guaranteed that the home buyer cannot walk off with the cash, but it is certainly not guaranteed to get the money back.

If you support this program then you need to either change it or change the promise that the money is guaranteed. It is a statistical certainty that during some future economic down turn that there will be losses of YVHA down money. If the public was promised that the money was good then the losses will be a major scandal and quite possibly cause the problem to be killed. If this program had been started in 2005 then it is entirely possible that all of the guaranteed money used for down payment assistance would now be gone. Think about that.

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TWill 4 years, 4 months ago

Well said, yvb. And good luck, Mike- this conversation is not to do with you personally at all. I wish you success.

The bottom line is: Home-ownership is not as good as it sounds and is not for everyone.

Somewhere along the way of home-improvement TV shows that promised a $20,000 return for painting a room and hanging curtains and the mortgage lending commercials that we used to see during the Super Bowl, the American public has been convinced that owning a home and investing in real estate is a given right. How and why did that happen?

An answer that does not involve the words "greed", "profit" or "easy money" would be quite impressive.

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Jon Quinn 4 years, 4 months ago

For your information, no loan by the YVHA or its predecessor, not even 1, has ever been defaulted on. A 100% success rate cannot be argued with and deserves your respect. I am quite sure that everyone at the YVHA would welcome any input you may have on how to improve upon their programs.

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Scott Wedel 4 years, 4 months ago

Jon Quinn, You say YVHA has 100% success with their loans.

So then are we comparing apples to apples or apples to oranges? How long has YVHA been operating a down payment assistance program in which the borrower is not required to contribute any money? I was under the impression that the article said he was the first.

It would appear that you are continuing to argue that YVHA because of any number of noble reasons, is able to run a program with the exact same parameters that have caused similar programs to blow up elsewhere.

I don't really care if YVHA wants to run a generous down payment assistance program. But please do not insult the public by claiming the money is guaranteed. If you cannot see the risks then that suggests to me that you lack the most basic qualifications for public office and I will never vote for you again for any office. Please indicate that you have a functioning brain and acknowledge the risks of being the second lien on a 100% financed purchase.

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Duke_bets 4 years, 4 months ago

jon - Have they ever been paid back? What's the average amortization period? Or, have those loans only been paid back in an appreciating market when a sale took place?

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Jon Quinn 4 years, 4 months ago

Scott, the only insults I see in this thread have been posted by you. I am sure you are capable of more thoughtful input. Unfortunately, I must concede a point to you... indeed there are no guarantees in life, and certainly there are no guarantees in lending. It was a foolish choice of words. And of course, past performance cannot guarantee any future result.

Nonetheless, I will reiterate that the YVHA has a proven track record of good lending choices. You and I clearly disagree as to whether the YVHA, the City, and our community in general should be providing down payment assistance programs at all for hard working locals like Mike. Put simply, I believe these programs are doing good in our community. I believe that this program ultimately strengthens the fabric of our town. We will just have to disagree on this and leave it at that.

By the way Scott, you need not worry... I will never ask for your support or your vote.

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Scott Wedel 4 years, 4 months ago

Jon, What insults? Rereading my posts I can only find one sentence that might sound like an insult, but it could also sound like me begging you to show that you understand basic concepts of lending. My doubts on that topic was sincere because you posted comments such as "YVHA is also guaranteed to be paid back at any point when the property is sold or refinanced" when that is clearly not the case when a foreclosure or short sale would wipe out YVHA's money.

And then you said "A 100% success rate cannot be argued with ..." but this is also claimed to be first loan of this type. Oh, silly me. You are right. This loan has been a success so far so they are 1 for 1 which is a 100% success rate. Or does the YVHA (or RALF have a long successful history of loaning to 100% of purchase price? I search and see references to down payment assistance grant money, but I can find nothing suggesting that this was just another loan paying the entire. It looks like this was, as is claimed in the article the first.

And then despite my numerous comments saying I have no problems with providing housing assistance, but loaning to 100% of value is risky lending and losses should be expected, you have the audacity to ignore my own words on the topic. Instead you falsely claim I am against down payment assistance programs. No, I am just against ignorant politicians saying the money is safe when any credible lending or accounting standard would note the money is at risk.

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sledneck 4 years, 4 months ago

This story is not about how housing is getting helped or fixed. It's about how to continue to screw it up. Someone who earns only $25,000/ year is someone who shows very little motivation. Giving people stuff doesn't motivate them it de-motivates.

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kathy foos 4 years, 4 months ago

Sledneck you are a sourpuss.If someone in this valley makes 25,000 they are way above average.You must remember most are just average or below,and get to vote also,thank goodness there are people helping to stop the home owning genocide going on,what does it matter to you?In America a person has the right to do what they want,that includes buying a home and helping someone else buy a home if you so choose,just pay your real estate taxes and let others do the same,Life,Liberty,and the pursuit of happiness,dont tell anyone that they cant own a home,this is America maybe you should sell yours?How do you like being told that?Get a grip.Some one else purchasing a home is just none of your business.Dont try to blame this economic crisis on people paying their way and wanting to buy a house,try a banker or 3,000 other bankers, there are plenty to choose from.With your attitude the economy would freeze up.

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bubba 4 years, 4 months ago

Sun, 25k per year is not above average - according to the census, the median household income in Routt County is 53k. Since you said most people are just average or below, I will point out that by definition of median, exactly half the households make more and half less than that 53k number. I would wager that the average is even greater than 53, since there is no upper bound on income, while very few people have negative income.

I read somewhere that over 73% of statistics are made up. It would appear that yours fall into that category.

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lovewz 4 years, 4 months ago

Hi Mike,Congratulations! We were roommates back in the day,at the old Stone barn on 6th st. I remember us sitting around back then, wondering if we could afford a down payment on a Cheese Burger much less a HOME! You have come along way since then, I couldn't be happier for you!

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seeuski 4 years, 4 months ago

Wow, very interesting subject and timely too as Obama is on a rant against the Goldman Sachs types on Wall Street. I have to totally agree with Scott and YVB etc. here. If we have learned nothing from this housing bubble then we are doomed to repeat it in a few years down the road. Why would the POTUS leave Fannie/Freddie out of any new financial regs when the lending guidelines that put unqualified borrowers in homes is where the heart of this economic crisis lies? It is a tool for the entitlement process and gives the Government the power to spread the wealth on the taxpayers dime. We as taxpayers are still on the hook with Fannie/Freddie and the USDA loans like the one this article touts and that Jon Quinn is so high on here. Financial regulation that does not change the type and risk of loans that Fannie/Freddie backs is worthless and nothing more than the continuing power grab of this enlarging Government. "But the CBO maintains that the government will incur $389 billion in additional costs to subsidize Fannie and Freddie's operations by standing behind their obligations -- an amount CBO says should also be included in tallying up the federal budget deficit." While I wish the best for Mike Arnt in his new condo we should not as a Country be in the subprime lending business anymore. And YVB is right about Jon, why would a politician make a comment like... "By the way Scott, you need not worry... I will never ask for your support or your vote." Why not? This is just one issue.

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Steve Lewis 4 years, 4 months ago

Wow. The affordable housing effort in Steamboat has been significantly cut back - to the level of down payment assistance - and that remainder is still indefensible.

Scott, I thought down payment assistance was exactly what you were recommending back during our epic '07 arguments on AH.

Its hard to argue about workforce housing needs today, so I won't. It was hard enough to argue for it when Hwy 40 was packed with inbound workers every morning.

So I'll just say, Good on you Mike! Enjoy your home. You've escaped Scott Ford's worker=ground meat syndrome.

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Taken4m 4 years, 4 months ago

I'm with you, TWill. As a renter, I have been blessed with many houses that have suited my changing needs. Thanks to my landlord, the money I would have spent this past year on water, sewer, washing machine repairs, water heater and electrician went, instead, to the local optometrist and dentist. Save up for a down payment on a house? What for? As my children grow up and move away, I don't want to be saddled with a dusty mausoleum of things they have left behind. It cramps our style to have to pick up the rubble now. I want to be fluid someday, so that I can enjoy my grandkids.

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Scott Wedel 4 years, 4 months ago

Steve, Back then we were talking about helping people get into housing via an assistance program to help them reach the finish line of a 20% down. Back then the prototypical person needing assistance had saved $10K-$20K, but was facing the challenge of needing an ever increasing down as prices increased. A program to help people to get from their saved 10% or 15% to 20% down is probably a good thing. The point of 20% down is that historically has lower rates and lower fees. Those are pretty safe loans and the assisted down is pretty well secured.

No one was talking about providing the ENTIRE down payment to get into a USDA govt subsidized 95% of value loan. It is scary that the USDA has such a program, but since it exists then YVHA might as well be helping people that have saved a down to get into it. But to help someone without something saved for the down is getting ridiculous and makes it real to believe that the person is truly prepared to become a homeowner.

And it appears that our leaders fundamentally fail to understand the financial consequences of that situation because it is said that the money is "guaranteed" when if he decided he needed to sell in the next several years then the money is going to be gone.

Just because there can be a good down payment assistance program does not mean that any program providing down payments is good. Misleading the public on the risks and lending to 100% of value is exactly how to set up a program to lose public support when it takes some losses.

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brian ferguson 4 years, 4 months ago

yvb, From here? Born and raised? On pappys farm? What exactly are your entitlements?

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brian ferguson 4 years, 4 months ago

taken4em, so exactlly how much money did yor pi$$ into the wind paying rent all those years?

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sledneck 4 years, 4 months ago

I've been called worse, Sun! I sure hope you are wrong about 25k being above average. Thats $12.00/ hr! I could stirr a bucket of ashes and make twice that.

If you want to understand the housing bubble a helpful source is a book by Thomas Sowell called "the Housing Boom and Bust". It points out what happened and why. Lots of blame to go ALL AROUND. Want to understand??? Read it!

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Taken4m 4 years, 4 months ago

bakrodr-

How much money? Plenty....pumped right back into the local economy. I support people who take excellent care of my family and shake my hand when I move on because they know my needs have changed. I have never been financially devastated by a home repair issue. I've never even had to go the laundromat.

One can't begrudge this man his new home. It's heartbreaking, how much he'll wind up paying for his pea pod over the next 30 years. He has long experience in jobs that won't be available to him for that same period of time. Granted, he can dump it later and it's still a great deal, but the larger picture is being discussed here by the smart people.

We are surrounded by beautiful houses; vacant houses with worried owners on the verge of losing their stuff that they've been paying on. It would be great if there was an incentive for those who would offer a rent amount to families that the the family could really afford. Be glad we are out here, being green.

The properties I've seen that are available for purchase in this program are barren and poorly situated. The words "New!" and "Mine!" don't convince me that a home like that is something I would want to pay for FOREVER.

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brian ferguson 4 years, 4 months ago

I love how all the self proclaimed " steamboat intelectuals" and "smart" people on these comment pages are so quick to belittle and insult people. Yup ,no college education here. Not a quick witted debater. But I have an opinion just the same

My earlier posts were essentially a test to see if i could be a a$$hole to all the other a$$holes, just for the sake of being an a$$hole....and you know what, it sucks, I feel dirty.

How do you people live with yourselves, being such dirty A$$holes?

taken, I had never heard anyone say they enjoyed paying rent before, maybe your not nearly as smart as you think you are?

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brian ferguson 4 years, 4 months ago

And honestly, I love seeing all these people losing thier houses, and stuff they,ve been paying on....pure comedy.

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Taken4m 4 years, 4 months ago

Thank god you're not posting anonymously. I'm glad I am. Are you my neighbor?

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kathy foos 4 years, 4 months ago

O.K. sledneck, I am silly,no balls ,sour puss.You must be feeling safer tonight after Obamas financial reform packet did so well ,they mean to weed out the undesirable borrowers,control the lenders.Im glad I bought long ago and have managed to hold on,wonder if I have any equity?Just dont blame borrowers .Everthing might straighten out who knows,at least people will have a lending standard to conform towards when the economy is better.I am going to read the book,obviously I like to read or I wouldnt look at this crap all of the time.Oh yampa valley boy I wonder at a person who wants to know who we are,I didnt ask to know their name,they did that to themselves,but I am but a ballless individual,Dont really want to fight it out oldwest or any style,just share a thought.

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Kevin Nerney 4 years, 4 months ago

Sun - in a related article " YVHA as about $200,000 in its fund of which 100,000 was from the City" So don't give me that BS about someone trying to help someone else by a home. That 100 grand came from our taxes and we should have input as to how and where it is spent. How about they lend me 6500 to buy powerball tickets and if I would have won the 258 million yesterday I would gladly return their money with interest.

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TWill 4 years, 4 months ago

bakrodr (brian ferguson)-

I "had never heard anyone say they enjoyed paying" their mortgage either, "maybe your not nearly as smart as you think you are?"

And what is "pure comedy" about "seeing all these people losing thier houses, and stuff they,ve been paying on"?

That does no good, whatsoever, to our community, state or country- certainly nothing of any comedic value. You should feel dirty from getting your laughs at such things.

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brian ferguson 4 years, 4 months ago

I guess I should have said I love seeing self centered rich white scumbags lose everything. Everyone else, good luck.

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TWill 4 years, 4 months ago

You're an angry person, brian. And clearly lacking in big picture perspective, as well.

If the "rich" lose everything, what kind of opportunities do you think will be available for "everyone else"?

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brian ferguson 4 years, 4 months ago

who cares about everyone else, survival of the fittest right? lions and gazelles

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sledneck 4 years, 4 months ago

I don't advocate a total "survival of the fittest" society. However, what I am saying is that having government take from others and give to you or to those you deem worthy is NOT benevolent. It is NOT compassion.

It's easy to be compassionate with other peoples money. Thats not true compassion, it's plunder. What kind of jerk steals your wallet in a bar, buys the house a round and takes the credit??? The government, thats what kind! And the problem is that half the drunks at the bar know the jerk is stealing but won't speak up because the jerk is buying them free beer with your money! Say what you want, thats whats happening in America.

It is amazing how few Americans exibit an understanding of economics and capitalism.

Before someone jumps up and damns capitalism for the horrors of the past 2 years I would remind you that we have not tried TRUE capitalism for decades. Capitalism is the freedom to fly AND the freedom to fall.

Simple economics teaches that capitalism is not a zero- sum game. One does not get rich by keeping riches from others. Example: A man purchases a big, new yacht. He's rich. Put enough taxes on the yacht to "stick that rich bastard" and he will not purchase it. Who does this punish? The rich man already has a small yacht so he will not suffer. The middle class guy at the yacht factory with 3 kids, however, loses his job. Then, he is on un-employment! Punishing that "evil" rich guy cost taxpayers the un-employment money for the middle-class guy.

Conversely, if the taxes on the yacht were lower the rich man would have bought it. Several of his friends would also have bought yachts. The man working in the yacht factory could have started his own yacht factory and became rich. Along the way he could have hired poor men and made them middle class.

That may not be how you communists WISH it worked but that IS how it works. The reason many of you despise capitalism is your own laziness is exposed in its light.

Others among you truly believe that we should all stop enjoying the fruits of our labor, live poor and suffer so "mother earth"(whatever the hell that is) can be "saved" from your percieved boogey man of "climate change" (even though the climate has changed for billions of years) With you there is no reasoning because this is your religion. You are a lost cause.

It is our duty to remove obstacles from business and society so that rich, middle and poor have opportunity. NOT so they have my stuff! JUST so they have an opportunity to get their own stuff!

Those who are capable of providing for themselves but are too lazy should absolutely, positively starve to death! But they won't. Because REAL, TRUE, PAINFUL, UNFORGIVING, UNRELENTING hunger is the best motivator on this earth. It makes the lions and the gazelles wake up running every morning!

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Kevin Nerney 4 years, 4 months ago

Sledneck I knew I liked you and that's why I always concur with your posts

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kathy foos 4 years, 4 months ago

Alot of brown nosing going on.What is your better idea for the housing authority? What to do with all of your money you contribute?(I like sledneck too,but I like everyone,now who is the brown-noser?)

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Kevin Nerney 4 years, 4 months ago

Give it back to us and don't charge us in the future. Affordable housing didn't work in the Bronx 40 years ago ( called the Projects) and it won't work today. Whoppi Goldberg talks about growing up in the projects all the time and that is not how she got to where she is today. ------- Wait lets build a high rise apartment building here in town call it The Project and make marijuna legal in the confines of that project and lets see what kind of superstars come out of there!!! LOL Actually after proofreading this before pushing send I realized the Projects were built closer to 50 or 55 years ago, wow how time flies.

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sledneck 4 years, 4 months ago

Who is the opposite of Midas, you know, whatever they touch turns to crap instead of gold? Government, thats who!

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sledneck 4 years, 4 months ago

When people are not taxed to freakin death they tend to give lots of their "capitalist booty" to charity. Despite what some would have us believe, Americans are the most generous people on earth; both at home and abroad. We could get the job done if government would stay off our ass.

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