Episode-1046- Listener Calls for 12-21-12 — 31 Comments

    • Do not buy the Walmart Jugs, have seen two split and rupture just from the vibration of sitting in the back of a pickup and being driven on normal roads, not off road mind you I am talking highway driving.

    • I agree, 2 liter bottles are the best and cheapest for the money.

      I do however keep one of the Aquatainer 7 gal containers filled in my vehicle, and it’s bounced around for a couple of years with no problems. It’s cheaper than a water brick, but I still wouldn’t buy 20 of them.

      • I’ve had some of those walmart containers, full of water, for probably about 3 years now and haven’t had any leaks yet( I change the water periodically, of course). I’m looking for something better that I can afford but so far, so good. I really like Jack’s suggestions but if you live in hurricane country, I think you shouldn’t mess around and get something as soon as you can. Since it’s winter, now would be a great time to start collecting those soda bottles.

        • We have 4 of those 7 gallon aquatainer containers, and have taken many, many trips on the road with them, gravel included with no issues. My only issue with them is that they are so heavy when full, difficult for me to move by myself.

  1. Can I store water safely in a 15 gallon Harrell that had dr pepper syrup in it? I am worried I won’t be able to clean it sufficiently and the sugar from syrup will cause a problem. Thanks

    • I have a similar question about one of those 275 gallon tote containers that someone had on craigslist that had previously contained smoke sauce. I was interested in buying it but became disinterested once I found out what was in it. I just thing that no matter how well you wash it, you’re always going to be tasting smoke sauce water.

      • Yep now that is likely true with something with that much aroma. However, if you used it for irrigation it won’t matter, I would not use an IBC for water for drinking anyway. It is too transparent, to much light gets into that volume of water and you are going to get algae.

  2. Besides twitter, there is also a service called Nixle. Nixle is a privately held U.S. corporation that offers both free and paid notification services for local police departments, county emergency management offices, municipal governments and their agencies. The Nixle service allows verified government agencies to send messages to local residents via phone, email and web. Information is delivered almost instantly to geographically targeted consumers. In 2011, Nixle served in excess of 4,600 government agencies and organizations in all 50 states. By August 1, 2012 6,000 agencies and 1,000,000 subscribers were registered to use the Nixle service.

  3. My mortgage broker and my builder both explained to me that the appraiser is now pulled from a random pool. As you explained in the podcast there used to be some form of steering from whoever needed the appraisal to be “X” dollars. I got to experience this firsthand in the past too. The problem this time was there were no comparable properties to match with the same preps I was putting into my home build. I had to come up with the difference in the selling prices of comparable properties and the extras I put in my property. Being a house build, I didn’t have the leverage over a buyer. No worries though I had backups to problems with my lending. I am glad to hear that you were able to work past your challenge.

    Merry Christmas TSP and Happy Holidays to all!

    • I remember doing a refinance a few years ago and we wandome cash out for improvements. The appraiser the mortgage company sent appraised it above what we needed. So the company sent a second who appraised it lower then we needed. So we didn’t refinance. I will probably try to do just a regular refinance through my Credit Union. I want to knock it down to 15 yrs.

  4. Your real estate observation is dead on. I buy and sell houses for a living. When we buy a house we always get an appraisal before we start the rehab with noted upgrades and repairs we are going to be doing. We also do the home inspection. After we get done with the rehab we also repeat the process. It is part of our sales tool when we sell.

    Consider it before you sell. Because over pricing the home can come back to haunt you in the long run.

    • @Jon the only thing I will add is to realize the lender is still going to order a preloan inspection so make sure you use a tough appraiser.

  5. Garbage burning: please be careful doing this! (or don’t do it at all, the service can’t cost that much.) Just remember to burn the non-paper stuff only when it’s screaming hot inside, which wont be all the time.

  6. Emergency responders: you can also see if the PD/Sheriff sends press releases via email and get on that list. Social media or old media are both reactive though, so maybe a scanner is better.

    Re healthy meats and veggies: Some might try getting a new chest freezer and a half a grass fed beef each spring. 180# meat for ~$1,200 ($23/week). Costco has some good organic chicken. I agree with Jack about good protein and fats (animal fat, not corn, cotton, canola or soybean oil). Don’t trim those steaks folks, that’s the good part!

  7. Well okay. . . that’s for saving me some money on the water bricks. The well went out in September for about a week until they could drill a new one. I was able to hose in water from the neighbor which I filled up 55 gal. trash cans (they are clean). Otherwise, I had gal jugs for drinking and cooking. The problem I had was the 5-6 gal jugs I had in the basement for washing and flushing. Nice idea, but a ***** for me to move up the stairs.
    I didn’t like the price of the brick at all, but the size of the container was attractive.

  8. So, what you’re saying is it aint gonna happen? 😉
    This is probably one of the best services that you provide – and one that I really have not come across elsewhere. Keep up the great work!

  9. Jack,
    About appraisals – I want to make sure I totally understood the lessons of your experience buying your new home [as i have little real estate experience], so here goes- you said you had your offer of $130 accepted before the appraisal – so is an offer dependent upon the appraisal coming in close to it? So is that why when appraisal came in $30 under your offer, you were not obligated to stay with the $130? If the appraisal comes in above an ‘accepted offer’, can the seller then say ‘sorry, but you have to increase your offer’? Also, is the seller able to say ‘sorry dude, we don’t care about appraisals, stay with your original higher offer or we’ll walk away?’ I have purchased only one home in my life, and I see our appraisal came in at our accepted offer [which I assumed was partially self-fullinging, in that appraisers look at the offers]. And is this why contracts are not signed until after appraisals? If I understand correctly, then my questions may seem obvious, but I just want to make sure I understand as I plan to purchase a BOL in next couple years so want to know as much as possible.
    thanks for the great shows.

  10. @bloody rich,

    Good questions.

    An offer contract almost always will include some things that are contingencies. These will include things like final approval on funding, inspection results and an appraisal. When an appraisal comes in short the buyer can always walk away if their agent knows the difference between their ass and a hole in the ground that is.

    The reality on appraisals is that they are based on very specific formulas. Some appraisers are a bit tougher on a property then others but assuming they know their ass from a hole in the ground, 10 appraisers will have 9 of the 10 within 5% or less of each other.

    So when a property appraises it is going to appraise again very close, in fact it very well could appraise for less. In other words unless there is some crazy competitive market going on like say in 06 where people are willing to pony up extra money betting on appreciation, the seller is totally screwed.

    I was willing to go 5K above the appraisal and pay 2k of the closing costs because I really want this house. If similar houses were available (as in MOST situations) I would have been a lot more of a hard ass and simply said, no deal meet me at the bottom or choke on it, and it would probably work, it has in the past.

    Now let’s say the property had appraised at 250K can the seller say, oh now I want 20K more, LOL, no. The contract was to purchase at a set price, the buyer writes the offer and the buyer is the one setting contingencies. Sure a contract could be written that way but no good agent would do it unless there was a very specific reason to do so.

    The only one I can think of would be say we had looked at the property and offered 200K right from the beginning. The seller gets pissy and says we are low balling but I come back with, “listen I know that is as high as this property will appraise for”. We show comps, etc and the seller comes to that understanding early on. I say hey, if the property under appraises it will push back the closing (true as we are now closing around Jan 15) so let’s not step into that trap. I guess the seller could come back with his own contingency that we pay the appraised price or more likely up to _____.

    Such a contract might read, “The price shall be 200,000 dollars subject to appraisal. Should the property appraise at a value lower than 200,000 the buyer shall have the option to exit the contract. Should the property appraise higher the buyer will be obligated to pay the higher price on the property up to the sum of 230,000 dollars. Any appraisal beyond 230,000 will not subject the buyer to any additional obligations”.

    Never heard of such a thing but again you can put anything into a contract as long as it is legal.

    Now can the seller say, screw the appraisal funding is your problem, come up with the extra 30K or whatever? Sure but the buyer can say, sorry dude, choke on your house. The seller is now sort of screwed. If the discrepancy is low say 5K it may make sense, MAY BE. Because the new appraisal may come in better with the next buyer and many buyers will crap 5K if they want a house.

    It also has a lot to do with the sale price. A buyer is a lot more likely to come up with 5K on a 750K property then say a 120K property. The seller is also a lot more likely to cave in with the more expensive property too though.

    See here is the issue, when a property under appraises it isn’t a problem that will go away unless you have a truly booming housing market, which we don’t. The seller who needs to get out of the house is left with the following options,

    1. Cave in and let the buyer make the problem go away (sell cheap if they can afford to)

    2. Re list and pray they find a sucker wiling to come up with a huge piece of instantly lost equity

    3. Do a true remodel and sink 50K or so may be a lot more into a property and hope it appraises high enough to cover the remodel and the difference.

    4. Keep the house and try to rent it and wait while a tenant bitches about all the problems the house has and makes the house worse because they are only renting and don’t really give a shit about the place.

    For most sellers there is no option 5, as bad as option 1 sucks for them, it sucks less than the other three. There are many other possible variables as well though but this is pretty much how 90% play out. The key is does the seller NEED to sell or not. Keep in mind while all this is going on the house is burning money.

    Now if the seller is going to sell then move it might not be that big a deal. If they just want a bigger house in the same area they can choose to not move and wait it out. If they have already relocated though (such as our seller) things are different, the home is just burning money each month.

    If they have a 1500 dollar payment and walk away from an offer they could be hurting for a LONG TIME. Say it takes 6 months to get say 215 vs. 205. They have burnt 9K in house payments to gain 10K on the sale price and have only netted out 1K in gain and had to bleed money to do so.

    Plus there is no guarantee the place will appraise in 6 months any better than it already did. About the only two ways a buyer won’t cave are…

    1. They can stay put and choose to not move. For some this reality check causes them to make that decision.

    2. They are so upside down in equity even though they know they are screwed they can’t afford to sell.


  11. Re: Body armor question for Mr. Sharp – are we no longer targeting pelvic girdle for a armored assailant?

    Excellent answer on .380 v 9mm as well.

  12. The listener who stated Rawles stated to be 6 hours from a major city is inaccurate. Also the Pacific Northwest is consistently negative in many of Rawles writings because of high population prisons in Western Washington.

    I would recommend Jack researching the claims by listeners before agreeing with baseless criticism of Rawles.

    I believe Jack really does not make a convincing argument that hordes are not a realistic scenario.

    Hordes have happened in Katrina, hurricanes in Texas, and many incidents where natural disasters have occurred.

    Strategic relocation is based not on fiction but on intelligent analysis of potential threats to civil unrest and dangers.

    • The listener indicated Rawles as saying 3-6 hours away from major metro areas. I’m not sure how accurate that is to Rawles, but I think Jack has a good point that we sometimes confine ourselves inside a specific example (fictional or not), when really there is a wide realm of possibilities to consider – most of which do not include prolonged or widespread “Without Rule Of Law” WROL.

      How far outside New Orleans or Galveston would you have to have been to avoid those “hordes”? Ten, maybe 15 miles?

      Check out Jack’s Youtube video (v=Jg1MmyMTghQ) about likelihood of WROL vs. EROL.

  13. Re: Regarding unrealistic scenarios

    Barring a filibuster, and 2/3 majority vote against an executive order, we are going to see a Fraggle Rock scenario of epic proportions with Diane Feinstein’s bill being passed: which mandates finger printing of gun owners and photographs taken as if they were sex offenders and bans on semi-autos.

    I know a popular theme is to dismiss the idea the government could come for our guns.

    I hope Jack really looks into the Feinstein amendment in the draconian unconstitutional actions that will soon come.

    It’s time for us to stop being ostriches and falling into normalcy bias and believe these incidents will never happen.

  14. Heard your story about difficulties with the assessment of your new property.
    My parents have a similar story without the happy ending.
    Mom and Dad are both in their 70s and both have also had strokes, making it difficult for them to take care of their property that consists of 20 acres in Southern Oklahoma, a 3-story house with a finished walk out basement and a large shop near the back of the property.
    Recently, they finally found a young couple more than willing to spend the $280,00 for the property. Dad says that more than $250,000 was in materials for the house alone and he and Mom built it themselves.
    The assessor totally ruined the whole deals in minutes flat. He did not count the 20 acres, the finished walk-out basement nor the shop and assessed the value of the property at $160,000. The young couple could not get the loan for the asking amount and Mom and Dad are still stuck in a property that they can no longer physically handle.
    I go down when I can to help out, but we have property and many irons in the fire and live 200 miles away.
    I don’t know how they could have combated that situation, but not one ending up winning anything in that deal and that’s just sad.

  15. Something that might help for people trying to do more with Twitter (e.g. receive emails upon posts) is to look into IFTTT stands for “If This Then That” and basically lets you set up macros between various online services. It may not cover this exact case, but I use it a lot for automation (e.g. posting instagram photos to my flickr feed, etc)