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  • rheoretro
    11-12 04:59 AM
    Lou Dobbs has a right to speak his mind. A lot of what he says is rhetoric but it is within his rights. I wouldn't want to associate IV with any Latino related immigration movement. Their objectives, issues and means are altogether different from ours.

    We [should] care only about legal immigrants and not have even a whiff of supporting illegal immigration in any form and from any country. For a long time now, the word immigration has been expanded to mean Latino immigrants and only Wall Street Journal takes care to single out that immigration from countries like India is of a different hue (more knowledge based), than immigration from Mexico (more labor intensive).

    Bottom line, aligning ourselves with the Latino agenda is bad policy and politics and a losing proposition.

    FYI English_August, I'm sure you know this but there's a not so fine distinction between illegal immigration and Latino immigration. While the overwhelming majority of illegal immigrants today are likely from Mexico, let me ask this question of you and other people on this forum. How many estimated (govt. estimates) illegal immigrants are in the US today from India? China? Philippines? Any ideas? The numbers will blow your mind. Guaranteed.

    Like it or not, legal immigration reform could well come packaged with comprehensive immigration reform (CIR) next year, which will primarily deal with illegal immigration.

    As for Dobbs the right-wing nutjob, I am sure that people have noticed that he has stopped talking about immigration since election day. Why do people care about him? His misinformation campaign fell flat on its face anyway.

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  • conchshell
    08-06 10:09 AM
    All monkeys also interfiled and became lions.

    This is too funny ... monkeys interfiling and becoming Lions :D:D

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  • vdixit
    03-24 04:31 PM
    Bought a house, sold it. Changed jobs, moved cities, planning to buy a new house.
    I dont think renting (flushing money down the landlords toilet) is a wise idea if you plan to live in this country for a long time.
    Go for it. PLan these things according to your family's needs.

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  • bajrangbali
    06-05 11:33 AM
    Good analysis there dude!
    While no one can predict future, the least we could do is prepare ourselves for good and bad times.
    IMO people should look at purchasing only if these conditions apply:

    1) Current rent payment is more than mortgage+prop tax+other monthly fees for new home
    2) Homes in relatively stable areas (where unemployment is not too high, diversity of job opportunities)
    3) Homes whose prices have not risen significantly in the past 5yrs (anything > 40% since 2001..please stay away)
    4) Planning to stay in the house for a MIN 2yrs

    One would argue why buy now if it might go lower...
    if above conditions are met..it would be a relatively safe buy and aboveall...people remember... time does not wait for anyone...we grow older everyday..make a decision regarding what we need for us and our family within the reasonable limits...go for it and enjoy it..
    an old friend of mine always says...live life..love life...be life
    and i believe she is right..


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  • learning01
    05-24 10:20 AM
    I had same thoughts today, as I did a few months ago in my post in this forum.
    Let's ignore quoting Lou here (don't quote the devil). Let the Ad industry be happy with him. His audience reach has climbed from 400k to 900k because of his immigration rant. I guess he will land with a thud once this dust settles down.
    He is just using this to play illegals vs legals. If you watch his lousy program, he is constantly ranting that this CIR bill will increase immigration by 100 million plus in the next few years. Some time back he also said that the CIR is a covert operation to increase H1Bs and legal immigration, not just about illegal immigrants. You can tune out what Lou says, he's doing what he can to improve his ratings.

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  • unitednations
    03-24 12:44 PM
    can you kindly enlighten me on what you exactly mean by "suspicious" original poster?

    Yeah..even I went to local office..without attorney..they didnt ask me to sign a statement..just sworn

    USCIS adjudicators follow a manual and very specific set of procedures as laid out by their headquarters. Sometimes in the gray areas or areas of interpretation they are given wide latitude in how to interpret those rules.

    However; document list and procedure for getting them is very prescribed. When person posts of their experience with USCIS and it is very different then what their policies, procedures are then it makes it very suspicious...

    Everything you have posted falls in line with department of labor audit and not local uscis office interviews or requests for information from local office interviews.

    If what you are saying is accurate then you and your company should have consulted with your attornies and specifically asked for this in a request for evidence and assessed the legality of this request and pulled the officer back and sent in only what was required by law.

    California service center back in 2004/2005 was denying 140's due to "temporary job" issue. Lawyer stupidly in replying to ability to pay part of rfe sent in contracts like you do in H-1b and put it in front of uscis that the contracts were temporary. USCIS had no choice but to deny the 140's and this was one of those issues (one of the people actually had their approved 140 reopened and denied for this issue). That particular company had 35 straight denials over this issue.


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  • Rolling_Flood
    08-05 08:35 AM
    Why did they not take the employer to court? Why make the EB2 line suffer for these employer's faults?

    If an employer wrongly files your case under EB3 instead of EB2 or EB1, then the onus is on you to challenge them and take them to court if need be.

    So an employer cheating him into applying in EB3 is an honest way?

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  • sledge_hammer
    03-23 03:11 PM
    I'm sure you meant Larry David ;)

    Did you send Seinfeld a royalty? :D


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  • nogc_noproblem
    08-26 11:00 PM
    This is awesome�����.

    This is hilarious........


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  • diptam
    09-26 04:37 PM
    Just Kidding - reading your post i was feeling like I'm reading a comment from Fox News. However i do respect your opinion and thanks for expressing it.

    My Point is more long term - in the shorter term no major change can happen to economy even if Barack wins but eventually Economy would be stronger under Barack's leadership. He also stressed that he would stop "JOBS BEING SHIPPED OVERSEAS" which means companies like TATA or INFY or some Chinese company taking my Job ( or any American's Job ) away from US to INDIA or CHINA. If you are planning a future in US - you would not want your US job taken away by your brother at INDIA or CHINA and Barack will make sure that doesn't happen.

    The Bottonline is he will create tons of Jobs at US , so unemployment will be very low , average peoples will be happy and however loud ANTI-IMMIGRANTS scream and shout no AMERICAN will pay attention. Our EB reforms will Pass much easily and we will be able to able to lead a much happier and content life with GREEN CARD.

    Once again my Point is definitely Long Term - in the shorter duration Barack has to first fix the Mortgage Mess and do something with Iran by taking help from EUROPE.

    For arguments sake :)
    if Barak wins the skies will part, unemployment will disappear, GCs will rain from the sky. Americans will hug Iran and peace will prevail....it is insane arguments like the one below that obamaphiles make, scares me about what will happen when he becomes the president. No legislative experience that is ok for him but not ok for Republican VP choice. Trashy ads from him are ok but no..no from the republicans. not a single major newspaper talks about his dealings with rezko or the 100k allocated to be spent on the garden. No major deatails on a single concrete proposal...reason being that public is not interested in the finer details. In the tank with major unions, look at the promises being made to them...anyways i dont get to vote i can look at all this dispassionately and watch it from far. He has a slick marketing campaing and the media loves him. Either ways my EB is so screwed i dont think either can help us out.
    as you say 'lets take it EZ'


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  • nk2006
    03-24 12:53 PM
    Do you guys look around at all of immigration.

    EB people are generally the only non immigrant to immigratn class of people who are allowed to stay in USA while they wait for greencard.

    Almost all others have to wait outside USA for many years and cannot take benefit of what this country has to offer.
    You are wrong - many other categories are allowed to be adjusted to the status while being in the country. For example look into latest CSR report - you will know that in year 2007, USCIS adjusted 621,047 foreign nationals to LPR status among this number EB's are only around 160K remaining or in other statuses.

    You could be a phillipino brother/sister of US citizen and wait 23 years to get your number called.

    You could be here from Liberia as temporary resident for the last 20 years and have to keep getting extensions for temporary status and one day it gets taken away from you.

    Sorry to tell you but the way you guys define pain is not pain when it comes to most immigration matters when compares overall.

    The family based immigration is important and can be very painful for some cases - like spouses and sons/daughters - and that is why congress has correctly amended laws to make these cases as exceptions (there are no numerical limits and also no country quotas). That was a correct thing to do and any wait in those relationships is much more painful. But for other categories in the family based immigration - like the cases you gave as examples (like brother and sister of a US citizen) - I dont really consider them as more painful than ours actually I dont even consider them as even comparable to ours. I dont know your case, but I came to US in late nineties with couple graduage degrees and acquired one more here - started my career here and justifiably feel that I considerably contributed to success of atleast one company which grew to 200+ people at one point. I emotionally and careerwise invested here. Now after 10+ years still no greencard and know how many career moves I had to let go becuase of this. While the decision to pursue the greencard is mine and I am not trying to blame anyone here, I dont think that our pain is less than someone who is "waiting" because his brother or sister sponsored him/her doesnt make sense (note: well I do have brother and sister and cherish those relationships but expecting a lifelong/career move based on their location of living is not there; and even if there is an expectation I wont consider that even comparable to someone living there and letting go many opportunities despite of talent just because of administrative issues).

    You are right - things are getting worse - there may not be any congressional activity on this issue for sometime and if USCIS try to screw us in other ways - then its going to be a rough ride. But the EB community activism (congressional or otherwise) will actually help in at least staying things more fair towards us.

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  • snathan
    01-10 04:42 PM
    With Israel on the offensive and so many jihadis getting whacked - don't you think that there'll be a serious shortage of virgins in jihadi heaven :D

    they dont need virgins man....:p


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  • Macaca
    12-30 06:47 PM
    China Respects European Unity (http://csis.org/files/publication/pac1062.pdf) By Jonas Parello-Plesner | Center for Strategic and Int'l Studies

    The European Union can work together � at least when it is pushed together. China�s heavy-handed effort to get European nations to skip the Nobel peace prize ceremony in Oslo earlier this month did the trick. Not only did member states show up, but Serbia and Ukraine, countries with EU ambitions, were encouraged to attend as well. Yet this was atypical of a relationship in which China, with newfound power, has found it easy to divide and rule the EU.

    While the European Council focused on the euro crisis last week, away from the limelight, EU leaders were adopting a new China policy. Discussion began four months ago when EU leaders took up Europe-China relations. Then the issue was overshadowed by the internal EU topic of the day: Romas. Dealing with China was relegated to short talks and coffee breaks.

    This reveals a lot about the EU�s strategic outreach. The EU looks inward and seems destined to be an enlarged Switzerland rather than the missing link between the US and Asia in shaping global affairs. China has recognized this, and increasingly sees Europe as an investment opportunity rather than as a global partner.

    On a recent trip to Beijing, I met a range of prominent Chinese officials and academics. Not one asked me how Europe intended to influence US strategy toward Afghanistan or about European views on the upcoming referendum in Sudan. To Beijing, Europe is not so much post-modern as post-global.

    How can the EU�s strategic shrinkage be reversed? EU Council President van Rompuy�s comment in September on the need for �reciprocity� � giving to China only when the EU gets something back � was a good start. In line with this, the draft for the new EU trade policy looks at the possibility of closing off the European public procurement market if China does not give the EU reciprocal access to its market. This tough EU language has not gone unnoticed in Beijing. I was repeatedly asked about it by Chinese interlocutors. China understands a clear but consistent message.

    By itself this new approach will not be enough. The EU must pursue a set of commonly agreed aims. Europe needs to set urgent, coherent strategic priorities, setting aside strategic patience and trust, the key words of the new approach.

    The process of setting new trade policy priorities needs to be extended to the political realm. Member states must select a few priorities on which they really want to engage with China. Non-proliferation, climate change, good governance and human rights are good candidates.

    The big players in Europe have been bypassed economically in the last decade by China. They still have traction individually but much less than their national egos afford � this is true even for Germany, which currently is on its own fast track with large scale exports to China.

    The Wikileaks exposed how the US looks at the political dwarfs of Europe. The Middle Kingdom has a similar take. The feud over Dalai Lama visits in 2007 and 2008 showed that China was capable of hanging out to dry even Germany and France. The old days � the 1990s � when the EU could levy sanctions on China and enforce a change in behavior are gone. The last vestige of this era is the arms embargo. A new era has begun in which China can levy smart sanctions on European countries.

    Resisting the bilateral inclination is difficult. Bilateral visits like David Cameron�s recent tour to China and the Chinese president�s visit to Paris are locked in the logic of bilateral trade promotion. But seeing links to China mainly as a bilateral issue rather than a European-wide concern means accepting a weak position vis-a-vis Beijing. China deals with Europe as it is, not how we dream it is. When European states pursue their own agendas, China will get free traders in the Northern countries to block moves that it sees as too strong, while ensuring that indifferent Southerners dilute policies on human rights.

    A purely bilateral vocabulary seems increasingly anachronistic when an Airbus is assembled with subcomponents from all over Europe. Member countries must acknowledge that signing up to the EU is a binding commitment. A high-level EU official conceded that the just adopted internal strategy paper was kept relatively bland because of suspicion that it would be leaked to China. As a result, it couldn�t contain a more detailed game plan for how to secure EU interests through trade-offs and linkages.

    The EU�s bilateral instinct can be overcome. The internal pressure for multilateral compliance should be stronger once the External Action Service is up and running. But the EAS is no deus ex machina. Member states must be continuously engaged to pursue reciprocal engagement with China. The European Parliament, with its new say over foreign policy, could play an important role by naming and shaming member states that subvert the EU�s strategic priorities in exchange for bilateral advantages.

    A joined-up China policy is urgently needed. Events tend to overtake the EU while it ponders policy and its strategic approach. This year, it was Chinese investments in Europe, particularly in government bonds from Greece to Spain. China�s investment in Europe is a natural diversification from a dollar verdose. Chinese investment should be welcome, but the EU should be an intermediary so that this process is not framed as a bilateral favor that creates political dependency between China and member states. Eurobonds, which have been widely discussed as a solution in the euro crisis, could be a useful tool in this.

    For EU foreign policy �czar� Catherine Ashton and her team, fleshing out the elements of a common EU China policy and being able to apply it in time means anticipating events and providing guidance for how individual actions and bilateral visits play to (or undermine) Europe�s strength. For example, the EU needs a code of conduct for dealing with Liu Xiaobo after the Nobel debacle. Such a code of conduct could be minimal. The important point is that it is adhered to.

    Member states must make strategic choices that do not favor short-term national rewards at the expense of Europe�s strength. The member-states need to move China up the policy agenda and act in unison if they want to reap the benefits of stronger ties to China and avoid being divided and ultimately ruled.

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  • validIV
    06-05 02:01 PM
    This is your justification for renting? Your 1300 goes to that owners mortgage. You are paying so that he can own the property you live in. I would not be surprised if he has multiple condos renting to others like you.

    Since you cite an example, let me cite one of mine.

    Co-op bought in 2004, Queens NY 2 bedroom: $155,000
    Rented now for $1,350 / month (Wife and I live in another home we also own also in queens)
    Appraised value (Feb 2009) $195,000, Peak market value (my opinion) ~230,000 in 2006 but it seems to be worth more now which is clueless to me.
    Outstanding balance: 60,000
    Current mortgage (15y fixed@4.25): 452 / month (+525 maintenance)
    Monthly cost total: ~1,000
    Comps in area: See for yourself: http://newyork.craigslist.org/search/rea?query=kew+gardens+co-op&minAsk=min&maxAsk=max&bedrooms=2

    Lets say that person is you renting it. You are paying to stay in my unit, pay my mortgage, pay my monthly, allow me to build equity which i just used to buy another property (thank you) and using standard deductions, allowing me to have a healthy tax return from interest paid based on your money. I dont even need to do any math here to prove I am making money from your rent because believe me I am.

    Renters will never understand why owning a home is better than renting as thus they will continue to make arguments to continue doing so. And I'm sure that giving 1 example or 100 examples will not change your mind in the slightest. Which is why you will always be paying owners like me for a roof to live under.

    I doubt it is as clear cut as you make it to be. Rent vs. buy has two components in each option - the monthly cost and the long term saving/investment. Let me take the example of the apartment I live in. It would cost about 360k (I am not considering the closing cost, the cost to buy new appliances and so on when you move in etc) if we were to buy it as a condo in the market. We rent it for $1300.

    Monthly Cost:
    Interest (very simplistic calculation): 5% on 180k on average over 30 years. i.e. $750 per month. After Tax deduction cost ~$700 (you lose on standard deduction if you take property tax deduction - so effective saving is wayyy lower than the marginal tax rate).

    Property Tax: $400 per month.

    Maintenance/depreciation of appliances: assume $200 per month (easily could be more).
    Total: 1300.
    Long term investment: $360k at 3% per annum (long term housing price increase trend).
    You pay for this saving with leverage and $1000 amortization every month for the loan principal.

    Loss of flexibility/Risk : Not sure how to quantify.

    Monthly cost = $1300.
    Long Term Saving (assuming you put the same $1000 every month in a normal high yeild savings account - a Reward Checking maybe) - you will get a risk free 5%.

    So in this case you are paying the same monthly cost for house purchase vs rent. but you are losing out on the additional 2% per month in investment return.

    Plus - buying gets you into a lot riskier position.

    I have seen the proponents of buying fails to take a couple of factors into account:
    1. Real Estate, historically, is not a good investment. It is even worse than the best savings accounts available. And you could easily save your monthly amortization in better savings vehicles.
    2. Tax deduction from interest means you lose on standard deduction. In the above example - a family of 3 with 1 earner will have NO saving from housing tax deduction. They would be better off using the standard deduction. If there are 2 earners - they could try to work around this by filing separately and one taking deduction for housing interest and the other taking the standard deduction. But even that will probably not save you any money since many other tax rates are stacked up against single filers.


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  • Macaca
    05-18 05:29 PM
    Why Ai Weiwei's case matters for the future of China on the world stage (http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/peterfoster/100088312/why-ai-weiweis-case-matters-for-the-future-of-china-on-the-world-stage/) By Peter Foster | Telegraph

    There’s a perception in Britain that human rights issues in China are really just a hobby-horse of the liberal left, an issue that only bothers people who pay an annual subscription to Amnesty International.

    That’s a big mistake, because human rights – or more broadly, political reforms and good governance – are the fundamental key to China emerging this century as a developed and stable nation. Everyone has an interest in making that happen.

    A recent report from France’s INSEAD business school picked up by the Wall Street Journal traces the clear correlation between good governance (rule of law, property rights etc) and prosperity.

    Economically oligarchies and authoritarian states stall when they hit per-capital income levels of about USD$15,000 a per head. China is predicted to reach USD$8,300 this year, which means the time when these issues are starting to press is fast approaching.

    “Without reform, growth is not sustainable,” says Antonio Fatas, an economist at INSEAD and co-author of the study, “This has clear implications for China and other countries.”

    That’s why Jim O’Neill of Goldman Sachs, on a visit to China last week, said that his biggest worry for China was not near-term inflation, or asset bubbles or bad debts but the Communist Party’s long-term ability to adapt politically to a new world.

    Asked about risks to the ongoing China story, Mr O’Neill (the man who coined the BRICs acronym) cited inflation and rising protectionism in Washington as “small” risks, before sounding his note of real caution.

    “The third thing [risk to China], that’s much longer term; as Chinese people get wealthier, the Chinese central party machine has to adapt more and more to keep in synch with what Chinese people want, and that might be a real challenge,” he warned.

    That’s why Ai Weiwei’s case matters – not just as an individual human being (though he does) but also because his case is symptomatic of the failure of China’s ruling Communist Party to create credible political institutions in which the rest of the world can have faith.

    As Markus Loning, Germany’s human rights commissioner, said this week in Beijing. “It is not about a single case, but the rule of law. If we want to have development, it is important for people to claim that they are protected [by the law].”

    The world must speak up over the detention of Ai Weiwei (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/columnists/borisjohnson/8515705/The-world-must-speak-up-over-the-detention-of-Ai-Weiwei.html) By Boris Johnson | Telegraph

    Australia's multilateralism fetish (http://www.lowyinterpreter.org/post/2011/05/18/Multilateralism-Time-to-rip-off-the-band-aid.aspx) By Michael Wesley | The Interpreter
    Will violence in Mexico impact immigrant pool in US? (http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Americas/Latin-America-Monitor/2011/0517/Will-violence-in-Mexico-impact-immigrant-pool-in-US) By Sara Miller Llana | The Christian Science Monitor
    Let us deport the bad guys
    Critics are wrong: The Secure Communities program works. (http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-baca-immigration-20110517,0,7647155.story)
    By Lee Baca | Los Angeles Times
    Hispanic Growth Shapes 2012 Race (http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704281504576327200008543470.html) By GERALD F. SEIB | Wall Street Journal
    E-2 visa helps many non-U.S. citizens start small firms (http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-smallbiz-visa-20110516,0,7260673.story) By Cyndia Zwahlen | Los Angeles Times

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  • sledge_hammer
    06-05 04:49 PM
    Your leverage is $270,000 in this investment, and you pay 5% interest on it which is tax deductible. You don't suppose one can borrow 270Gs to invest in, per my example, S&P 500 to get 10% annually? Of course the you are able to borrow that much on a home is because it is considered relatively a safe debt for the lender. That can't be said for stocks.

    How/where else will you earn $15,000 (equity) per year by spending $13,500 (interest).

    Remember, every payment I make, I also include the principal payment, so I am closer to owning more of my home as time passes.

    >> But going with the spirit of my original post, in the long run, the equity you build (15K/yr) will far out weigh the yearly savings you get by renting.

    You are right in 90% of cases - where people will otherwise spend the money and not save it.

    If you have a mortgage - you are "forced" to save because the monthly amortization automatically builds equity. If you are renting - you are not "forced" to save that amount - and hence would probably be spent (in my case) in a gaming machine with I7 processor (which has NO long term value).

    However, in the hypothetical 10% scenario (in case of immigrants, specially Indians, my gut feel is that it is significantly more than 10%) - where the amount is saved in some sort of investment vehicle instead of being frittered away - you would come out ahead in the long term.


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  • conchshell
    08-05 06:10 PM
    In a poor zoo of India, a lion was frustrated as he was offered not more than 1 kg meat a day. The lion thought its prayers were answered when one US Zoo Manager visited the zoo and requested the zoo management to shift the lion to the US Zoo.

    The lion was so happy and started thinking of a central A/c environment, a goat or two every day and a US Green Card also.

    On its first day after arrival, the lion was offered a big bag, sealed very nicely for breakfast. The lion opened it quickly but was shocked to see that it contained few bananas. Then the lion thought that may be they cared too much for him as they were worried about his stomach as he had recently shifted from India.

    The next day the same thing happened. On the third day again the same food bag of bananas was delivered.

    The lion was so furious, it stopped the delivery boy and blasted at him, 'Don't you know I am the lion... king of the Jungle..., what's wrong with your management?, what nonsense is this? Why are you delivering bananas to me?'

    The delivery boy politely said, 'Sir, I know you are the king of the jungle but ..did you know that you have been brought here on a monkey's visa!!!

    Moral: Better to be a Lion in India than a Monkey elsewhere!!!

    Now worst thing is that Lion can not change his job profile till he gets the green card. He will be forced to act like a monkey so that it matches with his monkey job profile mentioned in his PERM application. All he can hope for is to invoke AC21 after couple of years to join a new zoo, that too on a similar job profile. :D:D Gurus what are the Lion's options at this point of time?? :D:D:

    Irony is that if our Lion stays in USA on monkey visa for couple of years, and finally goes back to India, his Lion skills will be obsolete, and Indian zoo's will not entertain a Lion acting like a monkey. Our poor Lion is totally doomed. :D:D

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  • ghost
    07-15 01:29 PM
    Every forum has its set of jokers like loveh1b. They live in their own well and think it is the world. Thats how these generalizations come.

    Don't be so harsh on people like "loveh1b". We need to educate them with the actual situation, not scare them away with such statements.

    Hopefully, loveh1b will gain from our perspectives and change his attitude towards the US legal immigration system. Not to mention, s/he can educate other people on how things work in a global economy.

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  • TomPlate
    04-08 12:30 PM
    Any one from MASS state. Particulary near Peabody, Salem, Beverly those areas. Any ideas of house pricing there...?

    08-06 04:17 PM
    Wow, I love this thread. It gave me a good relief . Thanks to all .

    04-08 10:40 PM
    I remember the 1990's UK housing crunch

    I often call the British "mortgage slaves", that was actually a factor in my move here. I could see people putting every penny they earned into their mortgages. When my parents bought their house 35 years ago, you had to put a hefty deposit down. After the housing crunch of the early 1990's which really killed off the economy (largely because people could not move to where the jobs were because of negative equity). I saw the same happening there again. Even being well paid in the UK does not mean that you can afford more than a cardboard box. Whenever interest rates drop there, housing prices shoot up, I considered an interest rate drop to be a disaster. The majority of the population thought that high house price inflation was great, but didn't consider that either the bubble must burst or their children will never be able to afford a house. People just pay the same percentage of salary into mortgage when interest rates are low, so prices go up. In the UK fixed rate loans are not the norm like here, more normal would be a 35 year variable rate loan (up from 25 years in 1980's). So when interest rates go up people are crippled. I see the UK economy as being underpinned by the emperor's clothes. People get 35 year variable rate mortgages for 125% of value on a salary when they can barely cover interest let alone capital, if one of them (assuming couple - because single cannot afford house) loses job they are screwed.

    In the UK a house I could afford would be about 1000 sq ft. Here my house is 1800 sq ft (nicely sized but not McMansion), and net zero energy -- with a huge amount of solar power and ground source heat pump heating http://tinyurl.com/2jzbfq

    Then around 2002 I saw the same starting to happen here. I must have brought the British disease here with me!! :eek:
    I should have been quarantined :eek:

    So other than a rant what's my point:
    * Buy something that you can afford, without becoming a mortgage slave.
    * Buy something that you really like.
    * Buy something that you are prepared to live in for a long time.
    * Think of your house as your home, not an investment (or at least a very long term investment -- like 10 years plus).
    * Use the down housing market to your advantage to find something that you really like (without over extending yourself).
    * You decide what you can afford, but the bank or Mortgage broker. Mortgage broker tried to tell me that I could afford more, I told him where to go, I want to live not just pay mortgage. I would recommend not going above x3 salary or x2.5 for a couple.

    If you think this way market timing is less of an issue. It is hard to judge the market timing just right in any market.

    Being an energy saving geek, I also recommend buying something with a large south facing roof (for lots of solar panels).

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