Real Estate Leaders Give Dold Earful

Congressman holds a roundtable to gain local input on improving the housing climate.

Get a room full of real estate industry leaders and the person who called the meeting could get an earful on the current housing market.

That is what happened to Tuesday morning in his Northbrook office when he invited 10 real estate professionals from different parts of the industry to his office for a roundtable discussion.

“There was a high level of frustration in the room,” Dold said after the meeting. “This is a first step. There will be more meetings. This was a meeting to get an idea of what we in the role of government can do."

Dold’s agenda included foreclosure, loan modification and refinancing, , real estate values, mortgages, stumbling blocks to doing business and other issues.

When it comes to underwater real estate — a property worth less than the mortgage balance — Vice President Connie Conway of Glenview expressed anger at people who abandon property for economic reasons when they can continue to meet their financial obligations.

“We should start by doing something about the walk aways,” Conway said. “People are walking away from their property and they have the means to pay. It would make banks less hesitant to lend to borrowers.”

Scott Ginsburg of Northbrook, the chief executive officer of Prism Mortgage in Deerfield, sees a lot of frustrated potential borrowers. He disagreed with Conway. He sees very few homeowners who do not fight as hard as they can to keep their homes.

“I’m not in love with bankers,” Ginsburg said. “We have to find ways to consider the homeowner. Banks are making money. Now we have to find ways to help the consumer.”

Ginsburg told the story of a potential customer who had an 800 credit score seeking a mortgage with a 57 percent loan to value ratio and income nearly five times the monthly payment. The loan was declined because Ginsburg could not provide proof of a $90.18 bank transaction.

Dold sees possible legislation and more latitude for community banks and other institutions as a possible way to help people like the one Ginsburg described. He acknowledges new laws may not happen too easily.

“We can do that but I’m not sure how quickly it would be,” Dold said about possible new laws. “What we can do is give community banks more flexibility. If the appraisal comes in at $470,000 instead of $500,000 maybe the person has to put 22 percent down instead of 20 percent.”

Deerfield appraiser Rick Hiton was also unhappy with regulation and red tape. Though he has been in the business a long time, he can no longer do appraisals in downtown Chicago as he once did as a result of new federal regulations.

“I’ve been an appraiser 30 years and I can’t appraise on the Gold Coast,” Hiton said. He was referring to new federal regulations that require an appraiser to work within a certain radius of their residence.

Dold also recognizes the current reduction of real estate values is one of the major problems for the economy as a whole. “There is no question as we look at the economy and jobs housing is a big, important aspect,” he said.

Richard Schulte January 22, 2012 at 01:48 PM
"From HuffPo: On Friday, the State Department issued its final Environmental Impact Statement, concluding that the proposed 1,700-mile pipeline would have "no significant impact" on the environment and recommending that the project move forward, despite warnings from environmental groups that, among other things, the project would help accelerate the warming of the planet. " Not a whole lot more to say about the Keystone XL-the State Department says its acceptable from an environmental standpoint.
Sully January 22, 2012 at 04:05 PM
Kind of left something out, didn't you, Richie- "As the State Department made clear last month, "the rushed and arbitrary deadline insisted on by Congressional Republicans prevented a full assessment of the pipeline's impact, especially the health and safety of the American people, as well as our environment. As a result, the Secretary of State has recommended that the application be denied." http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/ps/2012/01/181473.htm
Richard Schulte January 22, 2012 at 05:17 PM
The State Department final report was issued August 26, 2011 and had nothing to do with the 60 day deadline to make a decision. Sully, it appears that you are referring to the final- final State Department report. The final-final State Department report has nothing to do with the State Department's environmental report-the State Department changed its decision based upon politics. An environmental study is not (supposed to be) a politcal decision, but that's all this Administration does is politics. Approval of the Keystone XL is a no-brainer. See the Govenor of the State of Nebraska's comments posted above by DCB.
Deadcatbounce January 22, 2012 at 05:45 PM
You're right sully, this president has to hid behind Hillary clinton to kill keystone.  Rather than coming out and saying what we already know — that he has chosen to side with environmental radicals and the EPA against job creators and hardworking, taxpaying men and women — he’s blaming his failure on the inability to finish a State Department review within the statutory timeframe. That timeframe, by the way, was approved by a Democrat-controlled Senate. The president’s actions today are unconscionable. It is raw political hubris at its very worst. Every time the President has wanted something, he’s been more than willing to fast track it. He fast tracked Obamacare. He fast-tracked his trillion dollar stimulus. He fast tracked cap-and-trade. He’s fast tracked EPA regulations and Solyndra loans. But today, he claims he doesn’t have the time to do a thorough job. Just another example of him squirming out of making a difficult decision that may piss off his base
Sully January 22, 2012 at 06:18 PM
I'm talking to brick walls. Got to stop doing that!
Richard Schulte January 22, 2012 at 06:25 PM
"On August 26, 2011, the U.S. Department of State (the Department) issued the final Environmental Impact Statement for the proposed Keystone XL oil pipeline, which, if approved, would run from Alberta, Canada to Texas. Under Executive Order 13337, the Department is responsible for receiving all applications for presidential permits for the construction of a pipeline crossing a United States international border. After consultation with eight federal agencies and the public, the Department is charged with making a determination as to whether a permit for the Keystone XL oil pipeline is in the U.S. national interest." "The environmental and safety review of the proposed project has taken place over the period of more than 2.5 years. To assist in preparing the EIS, the Department issued a competitive contract to an environmental consulting firm, Cardno ENTRIX. Consistent with the Council for Environmental Quality (CEQ) Guidance the final EIS includes information and analysis developed by Department staff working with its environmental contractor. . . ." According to the State Department, the State Dept. has been looking at this for 2.5 years. In my opinion, that's long enough. http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/ps/2011/08/171084.htm
Richard Schulte January 22, 2012 at 07:30 PM
The other possibility is that you're looking in the mirror and seeing a brick wall when you post. The radical left has trouble with hard and fast facts. Facts, we don't need no stinkin' facts. The fact is that the construction of the XL Pipeline would be good for both the American and Canadian economies, at a time when the American economy really needs a boost. And, it won't cost taxpayers anything. President Obama's decision on the XL pipeline tells us whose side he's on. There is only one job President Obama is concerned about-his own. To heck with the rest of America.
Sully January 22, 2012 at 10:05 PM
Yet you Richard continue to ignore the fact that the only study saying Keystone would create all these wonderful jobs and pull the economy out of it's funk immediately, is the study presented by the group who would profit from it. Why don't other independent studies agree? Why does a Canadian whistle blower assert that the company in question is not exactly "ethical" in it's presentation of safety issues. Why are European countries beginning to reject the process involved in tar sands? Don't worry, Rich. I don't really expect an answer from you that isn't right wing spin, so don't bother. You may believe the propaganda all you want, but as I've said before, I'll stick with the real world truth.
Richard Schulte January 22, 2012 at 11:18 PM
Quite an easy question to answer. Canada left the recession behind already. The lowest unemployment rate in any state is North Dakota. Texas is approaching pre-recession unemployment. There is an energy boom in eastern Ohio now. There is more fossil fuel energy waiting to be developed in Colorado and Utah. Why are the states with energy resourcess doing well? The answer is obvious and that answer is the same as the answer to your question. The US economy runs on energy. Keeping our energy dollars at home, instead of sending those dollars to OPEC is good for the economy. Keeping the price of energy down is also good for the economy. We'd all be rich, except for folks like Sully who want Americans dependent on gov't and will do anything to keep the rabble down. Sully, you're just one of the elistists who thinks they know more that everybody else and want to tell everybody what to do. Sorry, Sully, your just an egg-head. Your posts drip with arrogance. The price of gasoline is about twice what it was when President Obama assumed office. Let's bring the price of gasoline down by using our energy resources and watch what happens.
Sully January 23, 2012 at 01:02 AM
Richard, any oil that is drilled in the U.S. goes into the global market. Do you understand what that means? American oil is sold through the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. The CME puts the oil onto the global market to be sold on behalf of the corporation that drilled it. Oil that is extracted from the United States does not stay in the United States. More drilling simply increase the amount of oil a company can extract, export, and sell. There is nothing that says oil from America will only benefit Americans. Now, gas prices Obama's fault? Doubtful. http://www.factcheck.org/2011/03/is-obama-to-blame-for-4-gasoline/
Sully January 23, 2012 at 01:43 AM
I agree that any job is more desirable than unemployment, but exaggerating total number of jobs created is purely political and hurts many people who will count on this misleading information. http://www.truth-out.org/transcanada-no-more-6000-pipeline-workers-job-any-given-day/1327247729
Richard Schulte January 23, 2012 at 03:12 PM
Actually, the price of oil is based upon supply and demand, with concerns about the reliability of supply thrown in. In 1973, OPEC was formed to limit the supply of oil on the world market. You may recall the Arab oil embargo after the 1973 Arab-Israeli and how the price of oil shot up. (In the 1960's, the price of gasoline varied from 15 to 19 cents and you used to get a dollars worth of gasoline at a time.) The more oil on the world market, the less a barrel of oil will cost. Hence, America developing its own oil resources will bring down the price of oil for everyone. Since the US is not part of OPEC, OPEC's influence will be lessened by the development of North American oil resources. At present Iran is threatening to close the Straits of Hormuz. Roughly 25 percent of the oil exported flows through the Straits of Hormuz. Of course, US and Canadian oil makes us independent of the Straits of Hormuz "bottle-neck". Hence, from a strategic standpoint, the development of North American oil resources is in our national security interests. As far as the price of gasoline, the regulations put in place by the Obama Adminstration are contributing to the price increase. I don't recall the price of gasoline ever being so high in January. Just wait until the summer. If President Bush is responsible for everything that happened while he was president, then the same rule should apply to President Obama. Democrats like to change the rules whenever it suits them.
RB January 23, 2012 at 03:40 PM
Rich, the price of oil is based upon speculation. The only reason it reached the heights it did a few years ago was from unregulated trading. Yes, supply and demand comes into play at the gas pump. The US exports more American oil than we consume. You blame Mr. Obama for everything and 80% of the last 10 years were right in Mr. Bush's lap. Is he perfect? No, but stop blaming Mr. Obama for the price of oil and you may start gaining a little credibility on this board.
Richard Schulte January 23, 2012 at 05:55 PM
"Rich, the price of oil is based upon speculation." The above statement is rather non-sensical. Is there speculation in the market? Of course, but oil is a commodity. The law of supply and demand is always applicable-that's why it's called a law. Why do you think there is a difference in price between gold and silver? There is more silver than there is gold. Hence, silver sells for a lower price-supply determines price. The more oil on the market, the lower the price. "You blame Mr. Obama for everything and 80% of the last 10 years were right in Mr. Bush's lap. Is he perfect? No, . . ." Did President Obama sign the Obamacare bill? Did President Obama turn down the approval of the Keystone XL pipeline? Did President Obama sign the Stimulus Act of 2009? The majority of Americans disagree with the President on each of these three issues. President Obama is governing against the will of the American people.
Deadcatbounce January 23, 2012 at 06:03 PM
RB, do you mean more gasoline, diesel and jet fuel? Still, the U.S. is nowhere close to energy independence. America is still the world's largest importer of crude oil. From January to October, the country imported 2.7 billion barrels of oil worth roughly $280 billion. Measured in dollars, the nation is on pace this year to ship more gasoline, diesel, and jet fuel than any other single export, according to U.S. Census data going back to 1990. It will also be the first year in more than 60 that America has been a net exporter of these fuels.
RB January 23, 2012 at 06:15 PM
I agree that we are not close to energy independence. Keystone needs further study and should not be rushed as though we are out of oil, we are not. Lets repair the infrastructure we already have if we want to create jobs.
Sully January 23, 2012 at 06:50 PM
Sorry Richy... the law of supply and demand is a bit simplistic in this case, but I'm sure you know that. Hey, by the way, who was president in May 2008? I ask because the price of gasoline broke records at the time. Was Obama in office in 2008? Hmmm.... Now you may say May is a summer month and prices should go up. But Richie- that particular May, records were set for how expensive gasoline was. Why was that May different from other Mays? You are correct that Fox viewers disagree with everything Obama does, but fortunately, America isn't made up of only that population. Further, and once again, your rationale that a majority of Americans disagree with Obama is a bit simplistic.
Deadcatbounce January 23, 2012 at 06:54 PM
Keysone should not be rushed! So you think 2.5 years of study is not enough. How many more years do we need to keep mulling this over? Do we wait until Iran blocks the strait of hormuz or Nigerian rebels hault production? RB and Sully are just the "I've got mine, Jack" types ... environmentalism's main appeal is that it promises to slow the progress of industrial progress. People who are already comfortable with the present state of affairs -- who are established in the environment, so to speak -- are happy to go along with this. It is not that they have any greater insight into the mysteries and workings of nature. They are happier with the way things are. In fact, environmentalism works to their advantage. The main danger to the affluent is not that they will be denied from improving their estate but that too many other people will achieve what they already have. As the Forest Service used to say, the person who built his mountain cabin last year is an environmentalist. The person who wants to build one this year is a developer.
Richard Schulte January 23, 2012 at 07:10 PM
DCB: "Keysone should not be rushed! So you think 2.5 years of study is not enough. . . " DCB, darn you're good!!! Excellent comment.
RB January 23, 2012 at 08:15 PM
2.5 years is nothing. The Army Corps takes 8 years to make decisions. Right or wrong, there really is no reason to rush this if there are environmental concerns. Put people to work rebuilding our crappy infrastructure.
RB January 23, 2012 at 08:17 PM
Did Obama start two wars, a prescription drug plan and lower taxes? No, Mr. bush did.
Richard Schulte January 23, 2012 at 08:29 PM
"Did Obama start two wars, a prescription drug plan and lower taxes? No, Mr. bush did." I don't believe that President Bush will be on the ballot in November 2012, but President Obama will be. Are you better off today than you were 3 years ago? That's the question in the 2012 election. "It's the economy, stupid." to quote James Carville in the 1992 presidential election.
Deadcatbounce January 23, 2012 at 09:16 PM
Yes and back in 1965 the army corps of engineers was supposed to rebuild the levy system in New Orleans, but due to technical issues, environmental concerns, legal challenges, and local opposition by those opposed to the project, we instead had in 2005 the worst engineering catastrophe in US History. The project was initially estimated to take 13 years, but when Katrina struck in 2005, almost 40 years later, the project was only 60% complete with a revised projected completion date of 2015. Yes, by all means, let’s wait for the Army corps to make a decision.
Richard Schulte January 23, 2012 at 09:17 PM
I thought that we already did that with the Stimulus Bill in 2009-you remember that, the "shovel-ready" jobs and all that. That was an $867 billion boondoggle, and now you want to do it again? Fool me once shame on you; fool me twice shame on me. You must really think that the American people are stupid. The Keystone XL pipeline will cost not cost taxpayers a dime-it's all private sector capital being used. Simply because the Corps take 8 years to make a decision doesn't mean that it's efficient. Interesting, but it didn't take the Corps 2-1/2 years to do an Environmental Impact Study on re-building the levees in New Orleans. The entire project was just about completed in less than 1 year.
Deadcatbounce January 23, 2012 at 09:29 PM
Do you really think Canada will wait another 8 years for us to make a decision? You're dreaming. Oil will be sent to China and there is a lot more risk to the environment shipping oil overseas than tranporting through a pipeline, but at least it's not the US environment that will be at risk.
RB January 23, 2012 at 11:14 PM
The last time I checked Canada is a foreign country. Keystone will not decrease our dependence on foreign oil. So, no rush there. I'm not suggesting that 8 years is appropriate. My point was that an environmental study is worthwhile. Richard, I do hope you start quoting James Carville more often, if current quotes it will mean that ou have finally started listening to the 'elite' media. The economy we have today is a direct result of the reckless behavior of President Bush. Mr. Obama certainly saved us from a near depression.
RB January 23, 2012 at 11:32 PM
Rich,here's a more current quote from James Carville, "tea party thinks clean water tramples their right to poison themselves". The Keystone has the downside of possible damage to a huge agricultural area and poison drinking water for over six states. The State Department says further research is needed. It's worth the wait to get it right!
Richard Schulte January 24, 2012 at 12:14 AM
The last time I checked, Canada was a friendly country with a stable political system. No need to run oil tankers through the Straits of Hormuz to get oil from Canada. Getting oil from Canada is the first step in finally freeing the US from OPEC. Apparently you have forgotten the oil embargoes from 1973 and 1979-I haven't. The typical recession lasts 11 months. Don't tell anybody, but we are in an economic depression right now. If we did nothing to fix things, our economy would be in better shape. Our President told us that he would have this fixed in 3 years-well 3 years are up. We still have 13 million unemployed folks, 46 million Americans using food stamps and the unemployment rate of black folks is 15 percent and black teens is 40 percent. Everything that the President and the Dem House and Senate did from the first two years of his term has made the economy worse. The one bright star we've got going for us is energy development and the Obama Administration has done it's best to prevent us from developing our natural resources. There are existing oil pipelines all over Nebraska-no problem. You may want to read want the Governor of Nebraska has to say about the Keystone XL pipeline-it's posted by DCB on this thread above. President Obama doesn't give a darn about Americans who are unemployed or under-employed. If he did, he would have approved the pipeline-reason enough to find someone else who actually cares about the American people.
RB January 24, 2012 at 12:21 AM
Hey Rich, when your move to Florida is complete, you may want to tone done your 'drill, baby, drill' rhetoric, they don't want to hear it.
RB January 24, 2012 at 12:28 AM
I'm to saying don't do Keystone. I'm saying that the President's decision to delayitis correct. The politicians make rash decisions sometimes and we end up regretting it. We've lost many of our rights after Mr. Bush lead Congress into many terrifying decisions that we now live with everyday. All rash decisions and some simply wrong. Job growth is no reason to risk destroying the environment with another rapid and thoughtless decision.


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