The Truth…Media Style

OK, this is sort of a light rant. Not a really big one mind you, but a bit of a rant none the less. It’s a small rant because it’s about large print media and what they do, but since large print media is so seriously in decline that I’m not as fired up as I once would have been. I think that the pounding that newspapers have taken in the last few years has made them junkies for any kind of sensational or fear driven stories that they can create so that somebody (anybody…please!) buys a newspaper. This particular story actually involves the San Francisco Chronicle, but it could certainly and easily involved any of it’s competitors or any other newspaper anywhere else in the country.

Today, actually, the Chron published a story entitled:

Bay Area Condominium Sales, Prices Tanking

Call me zany, but what I was expecting to see when I read this was a story about how Bay Area condo sales and prices were tanking. Silly me! Instead we have a story about one couple and their agent who’ve had a problem purchasing a condo in one specific project in Emeryville. Somehow, relating their experience to the whole “Bay Area” seems a tad overzealous to me. The gist of this story is that because of high foreclosure rates too many HOA dues are being left unpaid and that fact, along with the problems occurring when many projects have a larger percentage of non owner occupied units, lenders are refusing to loan on condos. The result, says the Chron, is that you need all cash to close on them and thus prices are falling through the floor.

Currently, there are 38 active condo/townhouses for sale in Foster City…and 24pending sales. That’s a pretty darn good ratio if you ask me. Of course, none of these properties are experiencing the catastrophe today’s Chron is advocating. I have a condo in escrow myself at Pointe Pacific in Daly City. That project is a wasteland compared to anything in Foster City. It’s a nice project but there’s been an abundance of short sales and foreclosures there in the last few years. The buyer on my listing has 3% down, is getting an FHA loan, is approved and we’re closing next week.

I have no doubt that the experience of these folks in today’s Chron story is true, particularly in the East Bay, but it certainly does not represent the totality of the Bay Area experience. Never mind that the story over reaches just a tad…it’s still worth placement on the sfgate home page with a photo just under their banner. Yikes!


  1. larry rosen says:

    not in the examiner, jim. you wouldn’t have seen that in the examiner… unless it were true.

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