Tuesday, October 09, 2007

How Our Government Wastes Our Money

I normally don't get into discussions on social service programs but I find the following information to be totally disgusting. Did you know that there are countless families living in homeless shelters on Long Island right now? Did you also know that there is no need for many of these families to live in such overcrowded and awful situations? Here is the problem in a nutshell. A family gets into financial difficulty because they don't make a lot of money. They get paid minimum wage and this is not enough money to cover the costs of an average 3 bedroom rental which typically rents for $1700 to $2000 per month plus utilities. Remember these are hard working people who just don't have the skills, education or temperament to make a decent wage. Their options are to get government subsidies so they can afford to pay the rent on a home or an apartment or to end up in a homeless shelter.

The paperwork required to get into one of these subsidized programs is daunting and the waiting list can be months or years. If you fill out a form and miss one question the paperwork is returned to you and the process starts all over again. The government pays somewhere in the vicinity of $4000 per month for a homeless family to live in one bedroom in part of a home that has been converted into a homeless shelter. So, let's see........... do the math, an average 3 bedroom home converted into a homeless shelter receives $12,000 per month from the government while landlords that have perfectly decent 3 bedroom homes available for rent may end up having their homes sit vacant for months until a tenant is found. What kind of sense does that make????

I have an idea to change this system but no one wants to hear it much less implement it. We could have a centralized list of landlords that have available housing and tenants that need available housing. DSS (Department of Social Services) and SSP (Shelter Supplement programs) and Section 8 could be more consistently and adequately funded and paperwork could be streamlined. The rent guidelines for payments could be increased to represent fair market value to landlords willing to rent to those on such government programs. Townships could stop making it so darn difficult for landlords to pass inspections. It has become normal in the town of Brookhaven for 3 separate inspections by 3 different agencies to happen on one home before it may be considered to have passed inspection. For G-d's sake, my own primary residence would fail their insane inspections. Meanwhile all this red tape is happening while poor families languish in unsafe and unsanitary conditions. I frankly find it deplorable. It's time for a change.

Monday, October 01, 2007

Deal or No Deal?

It's getting awfully tough to find ready, willing and able buyers these days. It's getting very easy to find desperate sellers. Yet so many buyers are still sitting on the sidelines waiting. I wonder what they are waiting for. I went out to look at several properties this past week and I saw some pretty good deals. I just put in an offer of one of those homes. I looked at another home this morning w/a good friend of mine who wants to get into the real estate game of investing. We both liked what we saw and will most probably be putting in an offer on this home after we run the numbers to make sure that there is still plenty of profit left in the deal after we rehab the home. This is a very good time to hook up with a very knowledgeable professional team that can make your dreams of home ownership or real estate investing come true. I predict that in 10 years from now most of the properties that will be bought from 2007 to 2009 will experience a tremendous rate of return and those of you who are smart enough to be one of those buyers will look like geniuses. The beauty is that not only will you seem brilliant but you will also be wealthy, now that's a great combination that really works for me :)

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