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Housing Crisis: The Owl, The Dove & the Hummingbird - 09/30/08 05:49 PM
This Western Screech Owl has taken up residence on my back ramada (porch to the snowbirds) much to the consternation of a female Mourning Dove, which had built its nest of sticks on top of the Saguaro "boot." The boot (usually found inside a Saguaro Cactus) is the owl's preferred nesting site, and she had no trouble driving off the Mourning Dove. The owl was minding her own business, napping in the opening of the boot, when the hummingbird found her and began to complain. Mama hummingbird must have a nest somewhere close by, and recognized the owl as a predator. She's a (39 comments)
Is Your Town or City Bicycle Friendly? Add A Link to Your Localism Community Web Page - 09/29/08 06:36 AM
The League of American Bicyclists lists Tucson among the top eight communities in America for being bicycle friendly. That's information that we want to feature on the Web. What about your community? Here's something useful. Under the heading Bicycle Friendly Communities, you'll find more than 60 communities listed on their website. Scroll down on the page to "Current Bicycle Friendly Community Master List." Yours may be on the list. If so, feature the link on your Localism Community Sponsor Web page. It's one more tool in your toolbox. I'm Mike in Tucson, your preferred Tucson, Arizona mortgage lender.Think of me as (26 comments)
Required Reading: "Too Big To Fail. The Hazards of Bank Bailouts" Stern & Feldman - 09/28/08 09:14 PM
The subject hasn't decended upon us full blown as a result of the sub prime mess. This book, available on Amazon and through other sources, was published in 2004. The foreward was written by Paul Volker, and the authors, Gary Stern and Ron Feldman, served at the time as officers of the Federal Reserve Bank. The authors warned in 2004 that "too little has been done to reduce creditors' expectations of ... protection. To a large degree, the question is one of moral hazard, wherein anticipation of a safety net reduces a creditor or bank's incentive to act prudently." That's exactly what happened. (7 comments)
Jay Allen Invited Me to Join the AR Group "Blatant Politics" - 09/27/08 07:30 PM
Thanks, Jay! Am I blatantly political? Nope! But I'm a conservative individual with six decades under my belt who believes that our universe is not happenstance. I believe, along with our founding fathers, that no one religion should be the "State Religion" to the exclusion of others. But that's what's happening today. My definition of religion includes such faiths as Atheism, Secularism, and Materialism. Many of their adherents are among the most intolerant people I know, working to strike God and references to God from the public sphere. Ben Franklin, George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and other of the founding fathers held strong opinions (17 comments)
Credit Bailout Bill Contains Fingerprint Provision - 09/27/08 06:18 AM
With all the hoopla, crisis intervention talk, and chest beating in the media about the proposed Federal bailout bill, few have noticed that there's a provision in the bill to fingerprint loan officers. Maybe they already do this in your state. I'd like to know. Arizona at present doesn't even license loan officers! Real estate agents are fingerprinted here, though. I'm not for the $700,000,000,000 bailout bill, but I like the idea of keeping loan officers like myself accountable. What say you? I'm Mike in Tucson, your preferred Tucson, Arizona mortgage lender.Think of me as your local expert. (22 comments)
WaMu Fails. Bailout Talks On the Ropes. What Does It Mean to My Business Today? - 09/26/08 05:47 AM
The problem with big wrecks, apart from the very real consequences for the immediate participants, is that everyone else stops what they're doing to gawk. They stop thinking about the task at hand. This spectacular accident happened in Alberta, Canada when the driver of the semi took his eyes off the road to reach for a demanding cellphone. Little actions can have huge unintended consequences for the participants, and if everyone else rubbernecks, traffic can back up for miles. Commerce grinds to a halt. This morning, that's what's happening in Washington. Washington Mutual failed last night. The administration didn't come away (18 comments)
Mike in Tucson just Turned 60! - 09/25/08 07:16 PM
Welcome to my Online 60th Birthday Party, hosted by my friend Kevin Wood. In lieu of gifts or money (LOL), please click on the link below and subscribe to Kevin's blog. He takes AR seriously. Mike in Tucson
Via Kevin Wood, Tucson, AZ Realtor: Mikey is officially 60! It's no myth, he's really that friendly, he's always the guy looking for ways to help other people succeed, yes, his camera is always attached at the hip, he really is willing to try pretty much anything because he really is that passionate about Livin Life to the fullest every day in every (39 comments)
Salespeople, golfers, and bears! Oh my! On Monday, 88 Golfers from the US and Canada (really!) got together to raise college money for my nephew Ryan, who lost his Dad last August. Ryan is 10, and a promising golfer. Ryan's dad, my brother "Mu," loved to play golf, and this was his favorite course. The sponsor is Office Depot, and Jonathan (Mu) was a sales guy for the company. His boss of five years was there in his honor, even though he's moved on to another company. The Sr. Vice President for eastern Canada and Northeast US for Office Depot was (20 comments)
Silly Sunday Nite Post: Good Night, Sweetheart. Goodnight. - 09/21/08 08:35 PM
This is members only; thanks to all of you who remembered that we lost a brother a year ago. I'm playing in a golf tournament tomorrow that my brothers' co-workers at Office Depot put together for the benefit of my nephew Ry, who's 10. It's for his college tuition. We're playing at the Picatinny Arsenal Golf Course. We're all gathered together in Middletown reminiscing, and one of the things that Welsh men do is sing, so we've been singing. Sis Nancy remembered that this You Tube performer sang to his puppies, and we looked it up. I had to share it (12 comments)
Please Welcome My Friend Cheryle Gonzales to Active Rain! - 09/17/08 07:33 PM
Okay, the other Tucson mortgage guy invited her to the Rain, but I helped her write her first post so that you can go comment and make her welcome. (Glad to pick up after you, Paul... LOL) Cheryle is another Stewart Title person, and an escrow officer. You'll find that photo on the right in her first post. Check it out! I'm Mike in Tucson, your preferred Tucson, Arizona mortgage lender.Think of me as your local expert. (26 comments)
Please Welcome My Friend and Marketing Genius, Tanya Tennyson - 09/17/08 07:19 PM
Okay. Who says she's a marketing genius? That would be me--Mike in Tucson. Click the link to make Tanya welcome in this magnificent community of bloggers. Originally from Hempstead, NY, Tanya has lived in many places across our nation, and most recently relocated from Los Angeles to sunny, smog-free Tucson. She's a sometimes poet, a writer, and a survivor of four years doing telemarketing. That last one is what amazes me. I could never do it. I really appreciate the fact that so many of you, wrapped in the business of your days, stop to take the time to comment on a (15 comments)
Make Sure You Stand Out From the Crowd! - 09/16/08 11:52 PM
Someone spent a lot of money on this beautiful remodel of an existing commercial building. As I came around the corner from Speedway onto Country Club, I was struck by the lack of visibility of the FARMERS letters under the distinctive logo. You can't read it from 75 yards away! The 3 dimensional letters are about 16 inches high, yet I can't see them clearly enough to read them from my car. It made me wonder what I take for granted about my own business, thinking that the world knows who I am, and what I do, when it might be (6 comments)
Buying A Home Soon? Be Prepared... - 09/16/08 06:33 AM
September 16: You know that yesterday's stock market plunge means cheaper rates today on a 30 year fixed rate mortgage. You're right! You decided last night that you're going to jump in right now and take advantage of the combination of low real estate prices and cheap money. Good move! Be prepared for a few hurdles in this mortgage market... Higher Credit Hurdle. 740 is the new 720. Bigger Downpayment Hurdle. 25% is the new 20% down number. Higher Bar on Income Hurdle. Your bonus money doesn't count any more at some banks. Some big banking names have disappeared because of (17 comments)
Another New Member from a Title Company! Please Welcome Kimberly Keegan of Stewart Title - 09/15/08 07:33 PM
Two Kimberly's in one day! I'm please to introduce you to my newest AR Inductee. Kimberly Keegan represents Stewart Title here in Tucson. I told her about Brad Andersohn's fantastic success with Active Rain, and she signed up immediately. Brad, move over! LOL Please click the link above, make Kimberly welcome, and don't forget to tell her who sent you! I'm Mike in Tucson, your preferred Tucson, Arizona mortgage lender.Think of me as your local expert. (23 comments)
Please Welcome My Friend Kimberly Marohn of Tucson, Arizona - 09/15/08 03:25 PM
Actually, I'm just doing this because Kim's husband Jonathan is a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America (near and dear to my culinary heart) and I'm trying to get in her good graces. LOL Kim is a REALTOR in Tucson, mom to two little ones, ages 2 and 4, and she's brand new to our Active Rain community. Please click the link and go make her welcome. She's a runner, racquet ball player, and an early riser. I'm Mike in Tucson, your preferred Tucson, Arizona mortgage lender.Think of me as your local expert. (18 comments)
Size and longevity are no guarantee of continued success. Lehman Brothers has been in existence for nearly a century and a half. Merrill Lynch would have reached the century mark in six short years, had the bull survived. That saguaro on the left likely lived for more than a century, since it takes 75 years for a desert saguaro to grow its first arm. Lehman's company profile: "Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. is an investment banking firm. The Company's activities include capital raising for clients through securities underwriting and direct placements, corporate finance, merchant banking, securities sales and trading, research services (14 comments)
Endangered Rattlesnake On Our Front Porch... - 09/12/08 11:08 PM
I was at work when the phone rang. It was my Darlin' and she wasn't talking very loud. "Michael," she whispered, "there's a snake outside the front door." (We have double glass doors, opening onto a covered entrance.) This is why she loves me. "Did you take a picture?" I asked. "NO!" came the reply. "Well, could you get the camera and take a picture? I can write about it on my blog." "I'm NOT!" As you can see, though, she did. Like I said, she loves me. "I'm calling the fire department right now." I don't know if your fire (38 comments)
I-10 Expansion Update in Tucson, AZ: Who Makes These Signs? - 09/12/08 10:50 PM
We're more than halfway to the finish point. The I-10 expansion through Tucson is gathering steam, so to speak... They've narrowed some of the lanes to 11 feet, and some fool thought that it would be good to put up this sign. Locals call this section the tunnel. The lanes to the right of the sign are under construction, so they're not drivable. Four foot high concrete barriers constrain the two travel lanes, so where exactly should we move? I'm Mike in Tucson, your preferred Tucson, Arizona mortgage lender.Think of me as your local expert. (7 comments)
Location, Location, Location! Gate's Pass at Sunset, Tucson, Arizona - 09/11/08 06:29 AM
There's something about a spectacular sunset that draws us. Each evening, just before sunset, people from all over the world gather less than a mile from my home in the Tucson Mountains to witness some of the most glorious sunsets on the planet. The spot is called Gate's Pass. Here's a closeup of the setting sun between the saguaro cacti on a September evening. And another of the gathering storm from the perspective of the ramada at Gate's Pass, overlooking the valley floor below. If you like what you see, there are a few lovely homes in our community of Tucson (23 comments)
Want To Make Money In Real Estate? Act While Others Are Pondering. - 09/10/08 07:30 PM
John Morgan commented on one of my posts about buying down the interest rate to qualify your buyer: "You are right that a lot more money can be saved with a better mortgage than trying to wait for the lowest price. And, from my experience 30 years of real estate, it's never the "thinker" who get the best price at the bottom, it's the one who is taking action. It may take a good while for real estate to come back aggressively, so this is the time to be an active buyer. By that I mean, a buyer out there doing (18 comments)
Who's Scamming Your Listing? Find Out By Googling Your Own Listings. - 09/09/08 10:35 AM
The Today Show for September 9th featured a Craigslist listing for a rental. The price was well below what comparable neighborhood rentals would go for, and the photos showed a beautiful home, both inside and out. The adress and photos are accurate. The problem? Although this home is listed with a Real Estate Brokerage, it is not for rent. The photos were picked up off the MLS listing to create the Craigslist rental listing. When prospective renters responded, the scammer emailed back, explaining that he was in Nigeria on mission work, and that if the respondent would send a check for (22 comments)
Life's A Risk Worth Taking: The Dangers of Nesting - 09/09/08 06:28 AM
At first glance, all is right in this mother's world. Can you see the fledgling burrowing under her to get out of the desert sun? A closer look shows that her nest has been built among cactus spines so sharp that hypodermic needles are dull by comparison! Just a slight brush against one of those cholla segments, and the result is what you see on the right. (Always carry a comb when hiking in the desert; it's the only way to remove an embedded cholla segment from your skin.) It made me stop and wonder at the tenacity of the dove. (13 comments)
The Crestate Saguaro Cactus: One of Natures Magnificent Oddities - 09/09/08 06:00 AM
It only happens in one of every 200,000 plants. The saguaro cactus usually grows straight and tall, adding branching arms starting at age 75 or so. It will likely live to age 200. The tip of the main stem and of each arm is a single point of growth, but somehow that point has mutated into a growth "line" in this spectacular plant. The result is called a Crestate Saguaro. This magnificent specimen grows on the western flank of Golden Gate Mountain in the Tucson Mountain Range. It's only a short hike from my home behind that ridge you see there. (10 comments)
"The pictures in your mind becomes the stories of your life."Cody Bateman I've been a National Sales Manager for OPEX Corporation, an international manufacturing company based in Moorestown, NJ, so I bring something to the table. Here's how it works: (1) What you think shapes the words you say, and (2) our words create images in our minds. Stick around for the lesson. I promise it can change your outlook. Let's use my record in inviting people to join Active Rain as the example. (The sales manager in my mind tells me I'm not doing such a good job at (23 comments)
Attraction is Nature's Marketing Program. Take Notes! - 09/01/08 12:43 AM
Look at these two photos. How can you fail to respond by taking a closer look? Bees and other pollinators feel the same way. The end result is success for the plant in the form of fruit. "By their fruit, you will know them."Jesus of Nazareth (If Jesus of Nazareth isn't on your business reading list, revise your list!) It's interesting that He didn't say "By their flowers..." After all, the flowers are usually the showy part of the plant's advertising campaign. (Think cherry blossoms in Washington in the springtime.) Here's the reason: Another element is essential before fruit can "set." (34 comments)
Disclaimer: ActiveRain Corp. does not necessarily endorse the real estate agents, loan officers and brokers listed on this site. These real estate profiles, blogs and blog entries are provided here as a courtesy to our visitors to help them make an informed decision when buying or selling a house. ActiveRain Corp. takes no responsibility for the content in these profiles, that are written by the members of this community.