Saturday, November 19, 2005

Greedy Developers?

I honestly don't understand the claim of "greedy homebuilders." Irresponsible lenders and unscrupulous real estate sales sure but what about building homes in response to demand in a open market is so horrible? Criticize builders for shoddy workmanship where appropriate. Complain about sweetheart deals with municipalities as long as the municpalities get most of the blame. But greed? Where does greed come into the things homebuidlers do? Are we ready to call them wonderful giving sharing pillars of the community when they start next year selling at below cost just to stay in business? If not why not as we seem all too ready to excoriate them with the conditions reversed.


Chuck Ponzi said...

You're definitely right on this one. Homebuilders are no more complicit than the hookers and drug dealers that that offer sex or drugs for money. They're just fulfilling a social need. We should attack the Johns who buy their overpriced homes.

Immoral to push irresponsible financing on less than qualified applicants on which they make much more money on than traditional financing? Maybe. But, greedy? Never. These guys help old ladies across the street, pluck helpless kittens out of trees and leap tall buildings with a single bound.

OK, I know, I'm just joking about this.

But, I still agree with you. The corporations are there to make money on a legitimate business; if that were illegality in the US, there are far worse companies who make a lot more.

The debt parade is the real problem. But, that is systemic in our society and is a result of intra-class warfare among middle america. That's not greed, that's pride.

Am I greedy if I buy stock at $1 and won't sell it until it goes to $5? Most wouldn't consider it that, but what's different than a house speculator who buy a house for $100K and won't sell it until it goes to $200K? There is no difference; the market determines the price; a market is purely amoral. You cannot claim that markets are "greedy" when it is a free market.

Dogcrap Green said...

Total greed washes the money away.

The suppliers, subcontractors, and even the engineers are in the till.

It's amzing. Time is money. In the DC market people pay $6.00 per cubic to throw away dirt. Plus the trucking cost of about $10 per cubic. Do to the urgency of getting the houses built fast so you can build more house. Jobs will go out to bid with an imbalance of 15,000 cubic yards of dirt to be thrown away on a 200 house development. But redisgning it wouyld mean spending time to redisng the whole sewer system which is gaged off of the basement slabs and slopes 2 percent to the main.

It is better to spend 15,000 cubic yards of dirt at $16 per cubic yard, than spend 3 weeks redisgning the site.

We will see if this changes over the next year, but their is a lot and I mean a lot of fat that can be trimmed as the market slows to normal levels

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