Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Global economic slowdown to continue?; Nouriel Roubini

CNBC reported earlier this month on the predictions of Nouriel Roubini for a worsening economic slowdown worldwide. The factors contributing to this slowdown include a slowing Chinese economy (resulting in slower commodity purchases worldwide). 

Last week, he told CNBC that there is “virtually zero chance” that pump-priming by central banks will succeed, suggesting that policymakers should instead let the economic bust work itself through the system.

This prediction if true, would indicate that real estate prices would continue to stagnate both locally and nationwide.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Blair County faces shortage of real estate in business parks.

The Altoona Mirror reports that there exists a shortage of available real estate in Blair County's 8 business parks.  This shortage has caused the County to lose potential businesses. 

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

IRS employee attempts to initimidate her landlord

If  you are a landlord, be careful about renting your unit to an employee of the IRS.  From the Philadelphia Inquirer comes the story of a tenant who used her position as an IRS employee to attempt to intimidate her landlord for the purpose of committing identity theft:
Using IRS letterhead, Flowers allegedly threatened her landlord with an audit unless she faxed copies her driver's license and Social Security card to a machine at the IRS which Flowers could access.

The attempt was thwarted by the Treasury Department, but there is a lesson in this story somewhere. It pays for landlords to know where their tenants work (not only for the traditional credit check purposes) and to retain that knowledge in case they receive threatening letters from those same agencies. 

This story also provides additional reasons for the landlords to obey all tax laws.  Had this landlord failed to report income from the property at issue, the tenant might have had a more dangerous basis on which to threaten the landlord and would not have needed to hijack IRS' letterhead. 

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Stink bugs in 38 states

According to this item in the Washington Examiner, "stink bugs" have reached 38 states, prompting the federal government to devote additional funds to research a solution.  Observers in Central Pennsylvania have noted stink bugs for several years.

Farmland is most immediately impacted.  Stink bugs have  "ruined apple, peach and grape harvests up and down the East Coast" and have caused "losses of nearly $40 million a year" to Mid-Atlantic apple growers.  Loss of such revenue will affect prices of farmland.