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  • number30
    03-24 03:39 PM

    I can't help asking this.
    I have been following your posts for a while. I know you are quite knowledgeable in immigration.

    But many of your posts indicate you have a bias against Indians. You seem to be going hard against H1B and saying Indians are screwing H1Bs.

    I like to believe you are unbiased. Please let us know.

    Moment you bring such things into the forum discussions will stop and goes somewhere else.

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  • wellwisher02
    03-29 08:49 AM


    PMI premium payments are now tax deductible. This is effective Dec 2007. I remember reading an article on this. (I do not pay PMI and therefore do not keep a tab on this. However you may wanna check up on what I say.)

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  • pointlesswait
    08-06 10:37 AM
    too bad this discussion is still on!
    its all about which side of the fence you are on!

    i dont think anyone is cutting the line...there were already there..well before you ..they just rejoined with the right set of documents..

    if you are willing to stick around for 10 years in the same job.. doing the same thing...hoping for ur GC to come that u can switch..then good luck to you..

    i am sure WHEN USCIS formulated the law..they would have had this discussion...of how to accomodate "high skilled" workers..who climb the ladder ..and who aquire better qualification...and who have the b***s to change jobs and not be slaves to GC process.. this law is them..

    Go ahead and file the case rolling stone...i will be the first to oppose it...c u in the battelground..;-)

    in this context...i am a Pandu..u are a gandu..(pun intended)

    I agree with "singhsa".
    I was reading through this thread and couldn't help replying.

    Before i voice my opinion, i would like to mention that I have a Ph.D in Aerospace Engineering (2002-2006 from a very reputed univ. in the US). My husband's employer (non-IT) had applied for his GC in EB3 - in 2005 which makes sense since the job required a B.S (Even though he was MS and was working for this company since 2002). We have our 485s filed and are using our APs/EADs. Now, i haven't applied for GC through my employer yet, but if i apply, it would most likely be EB1 or 2, and would love to port my PD of 2005. The reason i haven't done that is because i personally do not think that getting a GC couple of years earlier is going to make my life any different than it currently is.

    Having said that, I completely understand what "rolling flood" is trying to say. And I also agree to what his point of view is. When a person who initially agreed to apply with EB3, changes his mind/company/ or whatever and wants to apply in EB2, he should theoretically start over. Why is it reasonable that he/she cuts in line ahead of a person who was already there. There is a reason why these categories are formed.

    Shady means or non-shady means, EB2 means that u have superior qualifications and you are more desirable in the US.
    EB3 means there are a lot like u, so u gotta wait more. Period.

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  • desi3933
    08-05 10:55 PM
    As usual, if the EB3 (i.e. majority) folks here do not like a subject, it gets banned. If something is unpopular, it gets swept under the carpet.

    Go ahead and close the thread, it's in your nature. Plus i already know which members to contact to make this go forward. I said before and i will say it again, i was NOT looking for monetary contributions.

    I was just reading all the posts which i did not get to read since morning when i left for work.

    To answer some people who called me an asshole, a hater, an anti-immigrant, a bodyshop employee, and a number of other things:

    1.) I graduated from one of the IITs in India, came to pursue my Masters in the same field in the 4th ranked university (for that field) in the US.
    2.) Finished my Masters in 1.5 years and got 2 jobs through on-campus placements (one in my field, one not).
    3.) Took the job that pertained to my field of study, been here ever since, company is the number 2 company in its area, and is a US establishment.
    4.) I never paid a dime for my H1-B or my GC processing till date, it was all paid by the company.
    5.) My company is very strict regarding the letter of the law, and so my GC processing was by the rule book, each and every detail (no fake resumes here).
    6.) I get paid the same (actually about 2% more) compared to a US citizen at the same level/position in my organization.
    7.) I have exactly the same medical/vacation/retirement benefits as a US citizen.

    I did not get a chance to read my PMs but will do that shortly after supper. Yes, i am EB2, but a VALID one. I hope, in moments of clarity, people who are shouting and abusing can see that.

    Yes, i do have an attorney and a paralegal i am talking to, and i will file this case in the proper arena. I am fed up and will do what i think is right. Meanwhile, for those who think porting is right, you are welcome to it. No one stopped you from challenging the law either.

    You can talk here all you like, but i pray that your "bring it on" attitude survives till the point where this porting mess is banned by law.

    Thanks for your attention (or the lack thereof).

    So, what is your point? Why are you against PD recapture (aka porting)?

    Since you mentioned it, let me say few things about myself -
    1. I have graduate degree from IIT as well (IMHO its no big deal)
    2. I have Masters as well
    3. Took the job that pertained to my field of study
    4. I never paid a dime for my H1-B/GC processing. Infact employer paid for EAD and AP for spouse as well.
    5. I worked for Fortune 50 company (until last month)
    6. I had exactly the same medical/vacation/retirement benefits as other employees

    I did I-140 in eb3 and ported to eb2 with the SAME employer (in year 2000). I don't see anything wrong in PD recapture.

    PS - Last Month, I become independent consultant in my field and enjoying my work.

    Good Luck to you.

    Permanent Resident since 2002


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  • Macaca
    12-28 07:00 PM
    N.B.A. in India, in Search of Fans and Players ( By JEREMY KAHN | New York Times

    The success of N.B.A. Commissioner David Stern�s 25-year crusade to globalize basketball is often summed up in two words: Yao Ming. After Yao, a 7-foot-6 center from Shanghai, was drafted by the Houston Rockets in 2002, the league attracted hundreds of millions of new fans in China. And though Yao is out for the season with a stress fracture that could end his professional career, the N.B.A.�s international march continues.

    This season, the league will play its first regular-season games in Europe, a two-game matchup in March between the Nets and the Toronto Raptors in London. And having conquered China, the N.B.A. has its sights fixed on Asia�s other big emerging market: India.

    Like China, India has a rapidly expanding middle class with newfound leisure time and disposable income, factors that Heidi Ueberroth, the president of N.B.A. International, says make the country ripe for new forms of entertainment.

    �There is a growing appetite for sports and entertainment and more options in India,� she said.

    In a nation where cricket is an obsession, other sports have struggled to find an audience. Cricket�s popularity has been reinforced by the Indian Premier League, which began in 2008. I.P.L. teams play Twenty20, a faster-paced game that has attracted younger fans and billions of dollars in corporate sponsorship.

    But in part because the I.P.L. has proved that city-based sports franchises can succeed in India, many sports are betting that they will be able to find new fans and corporate backers here.

    �The race is now on to become India�s second-most-popular sport,� said Sunder Aaron, the head of Pix, one of two Indian television channels that earlier this month signed a contract to broadcast live games and other N.B.A. programming.

    The list of international sports knocking on India�s door is a long one: Formula One is scheduled to hold its first race in India in 2011. The European Tour of professional golf has held tournaments here. English Premier League soccer, which has a growing following, held a promotional trophy tour in the country this month. And FIFA, soccer�s world governing body, has opened a marketing campaign to sell official merchandise here. Even Major League Baseball has attempted to recruit pitching talent in India.

    Ueberroth said that basketball�s popularity could grow rapidly in India because of the sport�s relative simplicity and the fact that a court can be created almost anywhere one can hang a hoop. This gives it an advantage over soccer and cricket, which require open fields. Basketball also requires little specialized equipment.

    A core part of the N.B.A.�s expansion strategy in India is increasing grass-roots participation, based on the belief that people who play basketball are also more likely to follow the N.B.A. The league also knows that the more Indians who play basketball, the more likely it is that one day an Indian player will be good enough to make the leap to the N.B.A. � an event that could vastly expand the league�s popularity in the world�s second-most-populous nation.

    The Basketball Federation of India, the sport�s governing body, estimates that 4.5 million Indians play the game. That is a fraction of the country�s 1.2 billion people, but Ueberroth said the N.B.A. suspected the real number was much higher because the federation�s statistics missed players who did not belong to a league.

    To try to accelerate basketball�s growth, the N.B.A. dispatched Troy Justice to India in February to serve as its first director of basketball operations in the country. Justice helps run the N.B.A. Mahindra Challenge, a series of youth leagues and tournaments in five Indian cities.

    Justice said the N.B.A. saw the young players as the vanguard of the N.B.A.�s efforts. The concept, he said, was to give the country�s teenagers more opportunities to play basketball in a formal setting throughout the year.

    �The kids here have the natural ability and the talent, but they are not given the opportunity to develop it,� he said.

    In addition to Justice, the league sent the Orlando Magic�s Dwight Howard and the Los Angeles Lakers� Pau Gasol on short ambassadorial missions to Mumbai and Delhi in the summer. It also sent two coaches to India to train the men�s and women�s national teams ahead of November�s Asian Games in China. It has created an India-specific portion of, featuring postings by two Indian bloggers.

    Viewership for the N.B.A. in India has also been rising quickly, but from such a low base that it remains minuscule, said Atul Pande, the chief executive of Ten Sports, which has contracted to broadcast Eastern Conference games. Pande said he thought the audience for a live N.B.A. game would never exceed 200,000 households. The viewership for many I.P.L. cricket matches is in the tens of millions.

    �The problem is timing,� he said.

    Games played in the Eastern United States are broadcast at 5:30 a.m. or 6:30 a.m. in India.

    �It was hard at first to get up and watch the games,� said Karan Madhok, the communications director of India�s federation, who also runs an N.B.A.-related blog called Hoopistani, which is featured on the N.B.A. Web site.

    �I thought I was the only person in the country watching. But as I�ve started blogging about the N.B.A., I�ve been contacted more and more by other fans, and I realize there are a lot more fans who do it.�

    For the N.B.A. to reach critical mass among Indian sports fans, many say, will require what Madhok calls a Yao Ming moment. In other words, India is waiting to see a homegrown star make it in the N.B.A.

    N.B.A. officials dispute this assessment.

    �There are a number of countries where basketball is extremely popular without any players in the league,� Ueberroth said.

    Others note that the ranks of English Premier League soccer fans in India are growing rapidly even though there are no Indians playing in the league.

    Still, the N.B.A. is not turning a blind eye to the search for an Indian Yao. Among Justice�s jobs is scouting talent. And he has found a few prospects. Among the most promising is Satnam Singh Bhamara, 14, a 7-foot-2 player from a rural village in Punjab Province. Justice helped him land a spot at an IMG basketball academy in Bradenton, Fla.

    �He has a bright future,� Justice said. �We don�t know where he�ll end up, but he�s got a lot of natural � for a 14-year-old, 7-footer � a lot of natural basketball instincts.�

    Others point to the potential of two Canadian brothers of Indian descent, 15-year-old Sim and 17-year-old Tanveer Bhullar, who are more than 7 feet. Madhok said that if either made it to the N.B.A., it would inspire Indian fans and players.

    The lack of a native star had not dented enthusiasm for the N.B.A. among the young players who were competing in the Mahindra Challenge tournament here last Saturday. All the players on the Basketball Rocker Jazz, a team from Shalimar Bagh, a middle-class neighborhood in the northern reaches of this sprawling city, said they followed the league closely.

    Their favorite team?

    �The Lakers,� Raghav Mittal, 11, said without hesitation. �Most of the best players are there.�

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  • milind70
    07-10 08:18 PM
    My situation goes something like this.

    1) I got 7th year extension in Sep 2005
    2) Visited India and got stamped and got new I-94 on return.
    3) Applied for 8th year extension without submitting new I-94.
    but applied with old replacement I-94 came with I-797.
    4) So the same I-94 continued on subsequent I-797 extensions.
    5) Recently applied for 9th year extension with the same.

    My Question is, do I need to submit last entry I-94 card that I missed which is expired now, for correction? Or is there any issue with this.
    All these years I have the same employer.

    I appreciate your help on this.


    There are two things

    1. when you got your 7th year extension 797 with I 94 , you were supposed to submit that I 94 ( on 797) along with the i 94 in your passport.
    This is important most people dont do it .
    2. when u aplied for 8th year extension u submitted the 797 of the 7th year along with the i 94 attached to it( which you were suppose to submit when you left the country for 7th year stamping) hence the I 94 number did not change. Your I 94 are out of synch.

    I would suggest to talk to an immigration attorney and i mean a real good one .
    Otherwise you could talk to an immgration officer and expalin your case.
    Or you could now go out get stamped and get a new I 94 9make sure this time you submit both the I 94s when you leave)

    I had a very peculiar situation where i had to travel outside the country when my H1 extension was pending and it got approved when i was out of the country and when i got a new i 94 when i came back with a new number than the one with i 94 on 797 ( which was of a later date)
    I spoke to immigrtaion officer and he heard me my circumstances and said i was in status and my i 94 were in order.
    Last year i went to my home country and got stamped and got a new i 94 but i submiited the two i 94s when i left the country.


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  • rockstart
    07-14 10:43 AM
    Did you mentiopn like Phani_6 that your lawyer filed Eb3 on advice from DOL inspite of you qualifying for Eb2?

    I already mailed the Letter to Visa Section, DOS with a request to allocate some Visa Number to EB-3(India) to help to reduce the wait time. Did not mention about EB-2 or any other thing. Just a Request for EB-3 (India).

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  • alisa
    01-03 01:00 AM
    on the other hand ..Alisa ..don't you think Pakistan should atleast handover some of the terrorists who are wanted particularly the MF/SF bastard Dawood ?
    basically u cannot have cake and eat it too ..if pak wants good relations/goodwill with India then they should take some action
    Screw Dawood Ibrahim. He is the past.

    What is important right now is to get hold of the masterminds of Bombay in a transparent and credible manner. That would be in the long term self-interest of Pakistan (and India, and the world).


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  • raysaikat
    06-24 12:04 PM
    If you can rent the same house for 50% of your monthly mortgage and on top of it never have to worry about declining home prices why would you be more happy owning it?

    You should compare only the interest part of your mortgage payment when comparing with rent.

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  • senthil1
    04-06 11:46 PM
    Law cannot be done to put restrictions only for new H1bs. They will put restrictions for any H1b for new H1b and also transfers. But if it applies to H1b extensions also then everyone are in trouble. But bill tells that all the hires of H1b. That means H1b extensions are not new hires for a company. So it should not be applicable.

    I knew that something of this kind is going to happen after seeing the first day H1b rush.This is extreme exploitation of the system and Govt has to take some steps atleast to show people that it is trying to take some action. If they are not going to take some kind of measures to curb this, even after (if at all) they increase H1b visas next year .... the same thing might repeat.

    I am one of those waiting to win the H1b lottery. But please can anyone clarify this one point

    ---This applies to all the applications filed after the enactment of this bill.

    So how is it going to effect the current H1b consultants?




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  • malaGCPahije
    07-14 10:33 AM
    Sure EB3-I needs help, but if the help is in the form of taking numbers away from EB2 and giving them to EB3 just based on the length of wait, then I have my serious objections to this proposal. I have said openly that I will object to it - I have never seen a post that says plainly - Yes EB3-I is stuck for 7-8 years and therefore they want numbers from EB2 because EB2 has moved ahead by 2 years. The irony is that all earlier posts imply this and talk about this request for handover in a very general way (75/25 break up, recession, lawyer input, etc).

    Visa recapture, country cap elimination is where the solution lies. That is the REAL help that EB3-Retro wants. Any short term fix purely out of sympathy, empathy, humanity, kindness is not recogniszed by law.

    I know people will pile on for speaking plainly and in a matter of fact manner, but I am amazed at the innuendo, implications and lack of straight talk.


    please read my message you quoted. I wrote nothing in support of or aganst the letter. Nothing they (earlier posts) say is going to make the dates go back or forward. All the poor folks are trying to do is maybe vent out their frustration. What difference does this make to you? No action is going to be taken based on one letter. You are safe, please enjoy your current date status.

    I can see the writing on the wall about where IV would be once most of Eb2 get their GC. It would almost stop existing.

    You and other EB2 people dates are current. Enjoy your GC. Best of luck.

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  • sroyc
    08-06 10:34 AM
    Although the discussion has deteriorated to a point where it will not be healthy anymore, these are valid questions.

    I think a good compromise would be if interfiling is allowed only if the candidate was eligible for the EB2 position at the time of filing the EB3 labor. The current rule punishes those who go to grad school full-time, especially if you did a PhD but do not qualify for EB1.

    I do agree that points raised by Rolling Flood is not well received by most in this forum.But I would pray that no one gets personal and keep the exchanges healthy.

    I do feel that this porting rule is a double edged sword with both pros and cons.But the question is : is it flawed enough to scrapped??

    I must add though, I see were Rolling flood is coming from.Just consider this scenario: Two guyz A&B graduate with a Bachelors degree at the same time.A decides to pursue higher studies and B takes up a job. After a year they file for B' EB3 at his work, while A is still at school.By the time A graduates and a EB2 is filed for him , B is also eligible for EB2.But here is the catch,B gets a much earlier PD than A.So was A a dumb dude that he decided to go to grad school.Does academic experience count for nothing against work experience???

    Its something to ponder upon.


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  • waitnwatch
    08-06 01:49 PM
    I don't think Rolling flood is debating the eligibility of 5 years experience post Bachelors for EB2. The point here is about porting which enables one to retain the priority date from the EB3 application which maybe required Bachelors + 0 years. To balance things out why not give a person who acquires a Masters or PhD a few years in terms of priority date.

    Note that I have no personal gain from any of the above happening. :)

    ........ RollingFlood has not explained why a job that requires 5 years or more experience in addition to a B.S. does not make it eligible for EB2. Without that he is likely going to waste a lot of money on lawyers.

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  • NKR
    09-26 09:34 AM
    Hello there,
    highly skilled immigrants have a buying power

    Yes, that is why they have allowed you to keep renewing your H1s and/or EADs so that you can keep buying. They will not give you GC soon


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  • nogc_noproblem
    08-05 12:44 PM
    A psychotherapist was having a roaring business since he started from scratch.

    So much so that he could now afford to have a proper shop banner advertising his wares. So he told a kid to paint the sign board for him & put it above his shop entrance. But, instead of his business building up, it began to slacken. He had especially noticed the ladies shying away from his shop after reading the sign board. So he decided to check it out himself.

    Then he understood why...

    The boy found a small wooden board so he had split the word into the 3 words: Psycho-the-rapist

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  • pete
    04-10 04:12 PM
    Its important to understand the root cause for the retrogression. Illegals dont have categories and categories in the EB GCs are there for a reason. It makes a world of a difference for somebody who is EB2 or EB3 if the person was from say.. Bangladesh. If EB2 he is all set if EB3 he will be languishing here. I am EB2 and am in trouble because of CONSULTANTS and yes I have a problem with that.

    Fighting between EB categories shows how shallow our debates can turn out to be! Rhimzim & all, do the illegals differentiate between meat packers, seamstresses, window cleaners etc.? Why waste time and energy?


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  • ss1026
    12-22 11:43 PM
    That's very positive news. Its not like every muslim has ten wives and produces 50 children.And for that matter, every Hindu widow doesn't commit sati.

    I don't know whether VHP has a hand book. At least, I have not read it even if there is one. If they have it and they have expressed similar thoughts, there is nothing I can do about it.

    There are several issues in Indian society. We are not denying it.
    What we are demanding is that Pakistan should stop sponsoring terrorism. Not only that the nation must take active steps to root it out instead of simply disowning the terrorists. That's all.

    I feel the mood getting a little lighter here and about time. What happened in Mumbia was dastardly and the responsible gotta pay. Lets keep the pressure and focus on it.

    What I dislike though is the attempt by extremists to generalize a group of people to make them less humane and easy for the other group to kill them or worse ethnic cleansing. The point you mentioned is very often quoted to scare/anger the majority. The muslims have been guilty of been easily misled too so this is not unique to hindus.

    Amen to the end of terrorism but India is way ahead of its neighbors. I do not even wish to compare us to our neighbors though I hope they wake up and get their act together

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  • django.stone
    09-26 07:03 PM
    I agree with 485Mbe4001 and many other folks on this thread that have talked about the results of Obama victory - USA would face socialist policies and personally our GCs could be affected by protectionist agenda. I have never understood why Indians (even 2nd generation) by default support Democrats, when all the values and rational reasons point us towards Republicans. I am libertarian in my views and a staunch supporter of republicans.

    Reasons for Indians to support Democrats -

    1. Generally religion neutral and not influenced by christian right wing
    2. Generally tolerant of people from other cultures rather than being a party of white folks run by white men
    3. Tendency to help human/environment suffering
    4. Afraid of military draft that could recruit our kids

    Reasons for Indians to support Republicans -

    1. Supportive of outsourcing which is one of the many reasons our home country is flourishing these days
    2. Supportive of entrepreneurship, which many if not all Indians plan to pursue at some point in their life time in USA
    3. Lower taxes so you can spend your money rather than have govt spend it for you in things you don't need (such as bear research in Montana for $3MM)
    4. Privatize social security so you can keep you own contributions rather than throw it into the common pool. Let me explain this a bit here. Indians contribute to SS all their life until 65, but never get to enjoy it as rarely we live past 65. Life expectancy of Indian women is around 60 and men is around 55, rarely we live up to 75+ like Caucasians. What happens to the money we contribute to the common pot? It is enjoyed by somebody else, if we had private accounts, you can retire around 55 and enjoy your contribution till you live.
    5. Family values of Indians very much like the value system of middle-america's republican base - religious, hard working, humility, respect for elders, american dream of owning a 3bed-2bath house with a yard, cul-de-sac and basketball etc.
    6. Aligned with Indian govt's views on fighting terrorism
    7. Allow your kid to go to private school of your choice with your tax dollars, rather than force you to send your kid to public school in your area


    Now coming to the issue on hand, overall roughly 60% to 80% of americans do not want any kind of immigration (check wikipedia). That is the unfortunate truth! We should all be lucky to be here due to generally business friendly laws that allows for H1B visas and EB GCs for skilled labor. If left to public, immigration would be banned. Hence, I believe both parties use this as a posturing issue during elections to their favor. khodalmd in the previous thread explained the breakdown of republicans/democrats accurately. Logically speaking, republicans can be convinced about its need to sustain economy and generate taxes as more baby boomers retire, but this logic is these days trumped by mix up with illegals.

    If Obama wins, economy/stock market would tank, more jobs would be outsourced. My fear is that during those times, any kind of immigration law would not pass. If god forbid, layoffs start to roll, then many of us may have to start from scratch, hence I call it perfect storm.

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  • thakurrajiv
    03-26 10:13 AM
    These banks, Mortgage companies and realtors - The whole nexus of sharks have made refinance almost impossible since last week.. Any body else noticed that? What happened is as soon as FED cut down the rate this nexus dramatically reduces the price 10 - 15%. If you go to zillow, you would find at least 10% reduction published for almost every home with comparison to 5 days before... Something is cooking up.. I do not know what it may be...At least for VA, MD, DC based homes I see this pattern. It looks like, lenders do not want to invite refinances.. and that is scary. Even most sites shows the list of properties with less value under " property sold last in 6 months" and make the properties disappeared which wer sold with reasonable price. I noticed this pattern for many bank alerts as well. So now the real picture you can get from is the county database only to fight these sharks. Are they trying to divert all to government loans (FHA?)... watch out.
    I posted a few messages in another thread on macroeconomic issues. As you found out, a lot of people don't understand the severity of credit crunch. If you have lot of cash, yes you have a big advantage, go and invest. Even if you get it wrong for next 5 years, you will be ok.
    But for people who want to do this on borrowed money, credit crunch will hit you. The credit crunch will get worse. Whole mortgage industry will change, things will tighten. This just means something has to give up, which is house price.
    If you are already not in a house, wait as you might be able to buy at much lower prices. Jump into RE as investment now only if you have enough cash to sustain upto 30% drop in home prices !!

    04-08 03:11 PM
    I am sorry, the housing will fall by 99K every year and not 100K. So you can predict how much the housing will fall and not us. If you can predict that housing will not fall down why shouldn't I. 100K is just a round figure. It can be 60K or 160K per year.
    You asked for which fruit picker. Here is one---
    "Despite making only $14,000 a year, strawberry picker Alberto Ramirez managed to buy his own slice of the American Dream. But his Hollister home came with a hefty price tag - $720,000.

    A year and a half later, Ramirez has defaulted on his loan, and he's hoping to sell the house before it's repossessed. And according to many housing advocates and civil rights groups, Ramirez is not alone. As mortgage foreclosures rise, many minorities are suffering.

    Brown said the language barrier (Ramirez, a native Spanish speaker, is not fluent in English, and spoke to the Free Lance through a translator) can also play a big role.

    "When you go into Washington Mutual ... you can't always get someone to speak your language," she said.

    "The real estate boom covered a multitude of sins," Simmons said. "Once the market started depreciating, the rug was pulled back to show the rot underneath.""

    Read my previous post. You have insulted every member by comparing their intelligence with someone who was so dumb enough to buy something beyond his reach. BTW thanks for taking the pain to google out the fruit picker�s story. This is my last post for you guys. You go ahead and discourage people while I will take some rest in my house.

    06-20 05:55 PM
    Real estate is always a local phenomena. So those of you who are following national guidelines are misleading yourselves. Unless you are major investor, who would like to keep his/her real estate portfolio diverse, national level real estate indicator is not of much use.

    I bought a foreclosed house few months ago, but before that did thorough study at personal level. Not only analytically study your market, but also "go to genba". Feel the pulse, find where and what kind of people live in those sub-divisions.

    If you are leaning towards investing, lean with good intent. Avoid risk by thouroughly understanding your financial situation. I went with 30 yr fixed, to be conservative.

    Finally, have guts to make a call, either way. It's the right time, I would say.

    In my local area I see about 50-50 ratio of open homes to sold homes on MLS maps. However the prices are too high, I think. Also due to my income level, I do not qualify for Obama's homeowners rebate and I do not think prices will skyrocket in 2-3 years, so for my personal situation, I have an opportunity to save a LOT for my downpayment while I wait for my GC and be in a position to either buy a bigger home or take reduced mortgage when I decide to go for the kill. It also gives me flexibility to shift the liquid assets to India with relative ease. Dont get me wrong, I can buy a villa in Bangalore almost loan free. In that case, I am wondering if taking a mortgage and being tied to it during uncertainty is a smart move.

    Although there is a tax benefit to the mortgage , one thing we know for sure is that home prices are not about to go up anytime soon. So with low rent payment for next 2-3 years, I should be in a solid position to decide what I want to do.

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