by Locker Room contributor
Jeff Neal, co-founder and former owner of Monument Realty in Washington, D.C., wrote a guest column on housing policy and the financial bailouts that ran in a bunch of Business Journal editions, including the Triangle Business Journal. You’ll like it. Here?s his straightforward conclusion:
Private sector players without a government guarantee have either defaulted on their debt or are lined up at Congress and the Treasury Department telling the government to ?save American homeowners? by socializing the problem.
That?s the essence of the problem: excess supply and a political class that buys votes by attempting to mitigate or hide losses by passing them on to the unwitting taxpayers, who think that?s sensible, sympathetic policy ? until the bill for someone else?s excess shows up every April 15. We?re bailing out bondholders, not helping homeowners.
Briefly, the solution: Let reality happen. Let buyers and sellers establish a market-clearing price, allow foreclosures to happen, let borrowers and lenders experience losses and the market will thaw.
Instead, the same policymakers who pressured banks to make questionable loans in support of homeownership are aching to force yet another policy objective ? fewer foreclosures. The consequences will be dire, again.
The politicians must get out of the economy, or we?re doomed.