Interesting Housing News Links (February 9, 2009)

* Judge refuses to lower bond for jailed nurse (Roxana Hegeman)

WICHITA | A judge refused Monday to lower the cash bond for a jailed nurse who, along with her husband, is accused of wrongfully prescribing drugs at a clinic linked to 59 drug overdose deaths.But the Pain Relief Network, a patient advocacy group that supports Linda Schneider, said just minutes after the ruling that family and friends have come forward with the money. Network president S…

* Arsonist fires devastate parched Australia (Christian Science Monitor)

Arsonist fires devastate parched Australia The pace of flames overwhelmed dozens of homes. Officials are reconsidering the stay and defend policy for rural homeowners.

* Northern Rock’s losses on repossessed homes soar (Nicky Burridge, The Independent Online)

Losses incurred by Northern Rock on repossessed homes soared nearly four-fold during 2008 as the economy deteriorated, figures showed today.

* Wind condo buyers want out, blame financial crisis (Baltimore Business Journal)

Add a new reason to the list of tactics being used to get condo buyers out of contracts: the global financial crisis.

* Wise County teen dies from fall on spiked fence while fleeing after attempted truck break-in 8:26 AM CT (Dallas Morning News)

A Wise County teenager died over the weekend when he fell on a spiked fence while running away after being caught breaking into a pickup, authorities said.

* Harry Gross: Finance mess hits home (Harry Gross, Philadelphia Inquirer)

Dear Harry: This financial mess is about to hurt us severely. We bought our home in 2005 for $202,000. We had a mortgage of $152,000, so we were not overbuying. At the time, my wife and I were working, each making about $70,000. Things looked rosy. In June, my wife’s employer moved to North Carolina. She was offered a job there, but we obviously couldn’t move. So far, no bites up here. The resu…

* Beazer Homes cuts loss, revenue dips (Washington Business Journal)

Beazer Homes USA Inc. trimmed its first-quarter loss, but the homebuilder still faces the worst industry environment in decades and continues to shed jobs to cut costs.

* Stimulus difficulties bad news for bank bailout (Carolyn Lochhead, San Francisco Chronicle)

That President Obama has to go on the road to sell a giant spending bill that would shower money on states and cities, roads and bridges and other projects wildly popular in Congress is not a good sign for what is to come. Economists say a new plan to rescue the banking system is just as vital to stopping an unusually destructive economic contraction.

* Mass. elder abuse on rise (Kay Lazar, Boston Globe)

More of the state’s elderly are being abused or neglected, as economic stresses push family caregivers to the breaking point and the social service programs that once helped them are cut back.

* James Surowiecki: The myth of moral hazard. (James Surowiecki, New Yorker)

In the course of the ongoing financial crisis, weve been ceaselessly reminded of the dangers of moral hazardthe idea that if people are insulated from the negative effects of their gambles they are more likely to act rashly. When Bear Stearns was bailed out, last spring, the move was attacked for exacerbating the threat of moral hazard. When Lehman Brothers was allowed to go bankrupt, in mid-…


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