Irrationally mad decision making to obtain the American Dream.

Real Estate Blogs

NYC Landlord small talk, real estate photography, inheritance taxes, and life.

new york city real estate photographer/photography

Well today I got back from Philadelphia after my in-laws finally would leave since I was getting a ride with them back to New York City. The sister in-law was actually cooler than I thought and we got a bit drunk together so that was a bit funny too. I had a real estate photography job at noon, but wasn’t able to make it till 4pm due to normal stuff like in-laws driving, traffic, and taking the wrong subway train. When I did get to the landlords pimpin pad off 70th St in Upper West Manhattan she was happy I was still able to show up, even late. I got right at it taking tons of pictures of her two 1 bedroom vacation rentals in her five-story 1890 brownstone. I was kind of nervous due to this being my first big client getting to do some real estate photography. I was almost worried because this is Upper West Manhattan. Her place must have been worth as an asset around and no less than $5-10 million (and that’s probably a small number). The mahogany wood work was amazing.

After getting all the photography done she wanted me to edit everything on spot in her apartment, upload it, and create another profile for another rental website. I helped her do everything and by the time I was done it was around 9pm. She ended up offering my dinner and I took it. My stomach couldn’t stop growling. I was basically tutoring her for almost 2 hours. It was rather chill. I kind of expected a more snobby preppy white woman from the name and sound of her voice, but she was a chinese immigrant who spoke excellent english, semi-retired after being in the banking industry, and received her parents apartment building. She was actually really laid back and really open or maybe I’m more charming then I give myself credit for. She actually told me a lot and it really gave me a good perspective on landlords with very expensive real estate and the costs going with it. She recently has started making her normal long-term rentals into vacation rentals due to the prime location. The more I asked I found out she has done quite well with the switch, but its just much more work for her then she wishes.

I found even though the place is paid off the inheritance tax alone is 50% of the MARKET VALUE of it. YIKES! Talk about big monthly payments so no wonder rent is SO HIGH in that area. The city is really makes owning real estate and making it profitable (with tons of equity) a really difficult task for manhattan landlords especially. That must suck. You pay off a place, you die, it goes to your kids, and then they are stuck with a huge property tax + basically new HUGE mortgage from inheritance taxes for life since her place is in the upscale Manhattan prime prime area. I suppose when you rent a 1 bedroom 500 sqft place for $2700/month (which is low she said due to bad market conditions) you must be banking on the job and in a SUPER nice area, which the upper west side is of course. I figured if the place was fully rented it must bring in around $30,000 cashflow a month or through vacation rentals for nightly rates. She should be well off with income, but instead the taxes alone without any income in a sick and sad position, that comes off really stressful.

Between 10pm to 12am we talked about America’s government policies, healthcare, people getting fat from food, life, and how to make me make better curry dishes. She was quite charming for a baby boomer and I hope she enjoyed my inquisitive aggressive question asking personality, I mean she did buy me dinner and we drank really great white wine.

I retired after 12am because it was getting late and I had to get back to my ghetto in Bedstuy, Brooklyn. I never got to move in to the new place in Prospect heights, but I did walk away with a $250 check ($50 extra then I requested). So it felt good to have a first real pay check even if small in New York City doing something media related. Now I’ll definitely have an excellent real estate photography client references and I hope I pick up more jobs with more work examples.

I’m sure I’ll be working with this landlord again on something if not just hanging out with her offering company for some stress relieving landlord small talk.

-pm

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Stocks will continue to fall – PUTS – AAPL, RIMM, BIDU, GOOG, C, SHLD, RIG

The stock market had a small run this week, but not enough to make back the money I lost in my huge Nov 07 call positions. I tell you the most annoying thing that can happen to you is when your co-worker rubs your lost in your face. My reaction like any other trader is to want to beat his ass and prove him wrong, but I have to admit he’s totally right. I did lose some big bucks, I told him, and now he’s rubbing it in my face. I suppose I deserve it in a little way just to have this 3rd party in retrospect show me “you are trading crappy and until you prove me wrong I can joke and not believe you” and I probably shouldn’t of told him. Recently my co-worker has been trading real money. He has already told me he has lost -$3500 real money. Of course he is blaming the brokerage website, the stock (BIDU in this case), and everything else except his own trading actions. I think the only real bright future I have going for me is that I can handle the loss and can take responsibility for my own actions. I lost the money because I waited waited waited just to see it vanish when I could of took a big loss, but still had money left over. I also noticed he has been depositing more money into his account after he loses. This is another thing he doesn’t understand about me. I have not deposited money into my account. I use what I’ve got or else you lose more. His wife does not know about this, I’m sure. He is newly married and even though I shared options investing with him I’m not going to take the blame for any of his future dumb actions. He will not practice trade, he doesn’t read up about market history, and he doesn’t listen. He’s very scholarly, but as he will find out it’s not about being smart it’s about trading with as much information to make the probability in your favor to be right and not just trading off “feelings” or acting cocky.

Speaking of “feelings” I have to say I’ve been overwhelmed with them recently. It is almost as my dreams have be yanked away from me. Paying off that $35,000 note would of been huge for me not having that payment making owning that trailer park much easier. So bad decisions create dead dreams, not to say it won’t be a success, but it would have been a better success paying it off and not trading the markets as I did.

As for real estate I’m suppose to be selling my 2bed/1bath home in Hampton, VA for $105,000 down from $119,900 to an investor who says he will pay cash (equity). This will be good so I can finally close on my second mobile home park. Hopefully, God, yes that great universal truth will be at my side on my next deal. I will be putting around $40k down from my home sale.

Oh yes, the stock market. I bought AAPL DEC 125 PUTS @ $1.17 today. I only had less than $1200 left in my account so it cost me just under that for around 10 contracts or a $1000 trade. This is my last money. In Pring’s Technical Analysis for Charting book it shows 3 trends from the years 1987 to 1989. The charts currently for November 2007 match exactly with this historical charts. Even some of the same things were happening like inflation, slowing growth, and selling less and less (such as homes in our case/construction). If this proves correct we just started to fall from the second bearish top meaning it will fall much more. Then supposedly it will have a run Dec 07 into Jan 08. In jan 08′ it will start to fall through 09′ a fall much steeper and longer then what has currently been taking place. If charts stick then I will be watching for short Call plays and longer Put plays. This AAPL Put option should only last until mid-DEC 07′ if charts pull through with all the negative news. Apple is a great company, but many great companies fall with the markets. It is when everything settles the best companies have unimaginable runs such is what happened in 2003 on after the big fall of 01′.

well later -fn


Google (GOOG) @ $437 profited me $15,000 in 5 days off near month call options

Last week was an excellent week. My art was together doing its thing. The day I told myself I would sell out my profit went up to + $20,000, but I was at a major disadvantage because I had no phone to call my broker nor internet to sell out. I finally did get to sell out of my Nov and Oct 07 670 call options both well over 100% ROI in less than 5 days market days. I told myself I’d sit back now before jumping into a new trade. I might take a tiny bit of my profits such as $500 to go through GOOG earnings on Oct 18, 2007. The past 2 years GOOG jumped around $30 if it reported good results so if it was another good year my options should sell out the day of earnings profitably.

My eyes are back on Apple Inc. (AAPL @ $167). I think it has finally maken up its mind to start “moving” again. It is definitely capitalizing in on the iPhone and its monopoly. I am seeing more and more iPhones in peoples hands and personally I want one too! I currently have a Nano iPod and enjoy it very much without any problems. Earnings should be stellar with Apple also taking over the computer market currently staking a 25% stake in the share of all computers sold. Apple is hot right now. I’d like to be options and see it go to $200 price target. This may happen at its next expo in January of 2008.

Lastly the only other company I’m interested in is Sears Holding Company (SHLD @ $142) the retail sales reports scared the stock some, but many factors are coming into play to force the stock up going into major retail selling season. Historically on charts it doesn’t move much after mid-November it looks so I don’t know how much a play SHLD will be, but I will watch it for a trade.

The lady I’ve been interested in is awesome, but I don’t think she is interested in me. Maybe the friend deal? Lame. I got to dance with her at Octoberfest here in Honolulu. I had a blast and wish I could do more with her. I did send her flowers and she loved them for sure. I guess only time will tell if I have a fighting chance at her heart.

As for my trailor park my new manager is doing a great job and I plan to buy some new trailers on the lots to rent out more. The second park is still waiting for appraisals and contracts to be done. I bought a residential lot near Austin, TX for $1000. Its right in a major new and upcoming community with tons of golf courses. If I do retire is that what retired people do? Play golf all the time?

After watching Michael Moore’s “Sicko” I think I’m going to also buy land in Canada, France, and Cuba since the healthcare seems to be great and Cuba buying up Peso’s could be a great investment long-term.


stock market correction = uptrending

If you are a stock market follower you’d notice the different wording journalist are using such as “optimistic” that we hit our low just recently last Thursday Aug 16 to be exact. I was watching the market as AAPL was hitting $112’s and NYX was hitting $65’s. I was drawing my support lines because after the big red candle dropped a big white candle stood right next to it top to bottom and went right up with buyers looking for a golden opportunities. Since I’m still a student I really did not know which direction the market would go. On Friday stocks popped higher creating a doji star showing the market made up its mind. So now for the past almost 6 days the market has ran up with white candles breaking the downward trend since July 15th. I’m currently in AAPL JAN 200 CALLS up around 30% in my options +$3000 in 2 business days. I’m not going to sell at some crazy high number, but I am going to follow the major uptrend line until it is broken or bad news comes out, other wise I’m stick to my play. I’m very confident in Apple and until their next earnings call I’m going to trade it up to earnings or until I’m happy with my profit. I’d also love to be in SHLD and RIG Calls, but I’ve been taught to be in only one trade at a time even if there are other opportunities available. I need to stick to the rules and show some discipline or I’m never going to become a great trader.

Currently I’ve been looking at a trailor park to buy for $190,000. I’ve talked to many experts in this field and the price looks very good for what I’m getting which would be an 18 lot, 2.37 acre, with 18 park owned homes rented for $350-450 each, with all utilities established. It is around 20 minutes away from University of eastern Tennessee (Johnson City, TN). I’d really like to do the deal, but I want to get an outside property manager if I buy it. This is the advice I’ve gotten basically to get rid of any favoritism within the park. It would make some serious cashflow to my real estate portfolio. Between the 2 trailor parks I will eventually be receiving around a $50k net income a year more than my U.S. Coast Guard income so it would finally give me the choice of retirement at age 29. I still want to be a great trader, but it would give me choice even if I did not trade stock options.

I’m almost done with my 3 classes at HPU and will start another 5 online in the next two semesters. I want to double major by 2009 then do some pastry or music school or both when I get out. 2007 has been a very volatile year for my portfolio and my goal is to come out higher than last years or at least breaking even. Many of my penny stocks are worthless so I will have to sell them soon or I will be paying some serious taxes from gains I do not have anymore. Trends are looking good and the technicals are showing major buying right now so look out!


HOKU, AAPL, SWN, NYX – Latest news on the trailor park

After HOKU earnings the stock plummeted to $8 and I totally expected it to fall. Everyone knew they weren’t going to show a profit and it is still very much a speculation stock because it hasn’t been able to start production yet. I’m with Jim Crammer about people rebuying it at a lower price and it moves up again throughout the year on its speculation of being the #1 for alternative energy. Our world is moving in that direction so I could only expect growth. As for AAPL it’s iPhone has been a success, but the market is turning over and its stock is finally starting to become submissive to all the selling. I’d buy AAPL later, but I see it moving much further down into the possible $110’s before it moves into the $200’s. If AAPL is able to continue momentum then I’d buy Calls on it if it moves past $150. Then it will be fighting the selling, but investors are true believers in it. It’s PEG score also has moved down to around 1.66 from over 2.00. So its value has gone up as well with its super profitable earnings. SWN’s charts have been showing a flip to oil/gas companies. Its major trend on the Daily and Weekly are going down with all smaller charts. Just yesterday it bumped up because it was slammed down into the Bollinger bands. I expect it to keep moving further down in the lower $30’s. I’m playing SEP 07 35 Puts on it currently up around 10%. I plan to sell out once it hits around $35 if I’m correct. NYX is always a confusing stock. You’d think this stock would be doing what ICE is doing, but it isn’t. I’m in Calls and I think I’m going to lose my entire $7,000 investment if by Sept. it doesn’t move higher than $87. At its current price of around $74 I’m left dumbfounded and believing in the stock that makes me seem living life a bit bicariously. NYX has had almost 4 major falls with small peaks. This stock has to pop high if on Aug 2nd earnings are awesome and profits are up. It should pop past $90 because there hasn’t been much news on it. So if it surprises investors and analysis it could finally get back in the game and be a more volatile stock like it use to be. If you are currently playing Puts on it you are probably a lot more correct and wise thinking then myself.

As for the good old trailor park I bought. I’ve been working with my property manager. I’ve been trying to get the cable tv hooked back up because it was disconnected before I could transfer it into my name. Two of the tenants are refusing to pay their rent because they are not receiving cable tv. Can you believe this? I’ve never heard of such a moron of a tenant in my life! I told him to turn off their electricity and gas that day until they paid their rent or enforce them to be evicted that week. I’m not going to tollerate this type of behavior. Business is business and you pay your rent regardless if you get cable tv or not. I pay for their housing and all utilities. Cable tv is a luxury. I only see future problems with very low income low education tenants like this in the future. I’m trying to move all the tenants in and rent the trailors properly with full leases, applications, and deposits so I don’t get shitted on. If I’m going to make this profitable I need to take the steps to make it profitable and not deal with unacceptable tenants.


What is good property management?

Recently I bought this trailor park and problems are arousing weekly which doesn’t surprise me, but my property manager is starting to annoy me. I’ve been setting up a bank account in the county where the real estate is being held and it has been very cumbersome. My property manager and owner that sold me the property has been emailing me non-stop with gas leaks, dead cable lines, broken AC window units, and needed new flooring in trailors. I don’t like to think of myself as a slum-lord, but I feel most of these problems can be fixed by the tenants and the gas company. Isn’t the gas company suppose to fix gas leaks. It sounds like a problem they need to fix. If the cable doesn’t work or the connection is messed up you don’t fix it the cable guy comes out and since you are paying for it they check it out. I guess in Tennessee everything is the owners problem? I think not. So far I’ve bought a new AC unit, 100 YDs of flooring, and about to have to pay for a gas guy to repair what is sounds like major gas leaks. Personally I’m starting to think my property manager is doing a shitty job and I’m about to fire him because he should be getting the companies to fix their own equipment connected to my trailors. He is doing a great job at telling me all this and I know I need to have the money ready to fund all his property management duties, but is this good property management?

I have another property manager in Virginia that has it much easier because she only needs to deal with one tenant in single family residence, but she always comes up with solutions not to fix the problems. I actually like her style much more. Her downsides are communication. She does not email me. Email is my #1 form of communication and she rarely replies to anything I write her and does not provide a more personally daily checked email. What fascinates me is that she is a real estate agent just like this other property manager and doesn’t search for other properties in the area for me to buy when I’d be giving her the commission.

The positives about the property manager is Tennessee is that he will respond daily by email. Now he might misspell almost 1 word in every sentence he writes, but even I have grammar problems. He kind of writes how he talks in his very westernly-southern accent and it almost worries me. Should I be worried? Is he a person really to trust? Do I really need a property manager who is very educated to run my park successfully? I think the answer is no to most of these answers. So for the most part I trust hes going to get me tenants in and I hope he is going to search for additional trailors to fill the lot. I’ve already went online at OnedollarSigns.com, which offer very affordable mini-billboards signs for effective marketing I feel that will get all my trailors fully rented again. I’m working on getting 6 month leases as a minimum for secured rent. If I can get 10 units rented at $450/month then that is $4500/month cash flow and after expenses I’d net around $3000. So as long as my current property manager puts all my signs along my road frontage and maybe some others near by to collect interest, he fixes the gas leaks, and gets the flooring in to rent the trailor then I’ll be happy even if it costs me a bit more then I want in repairs.

So what is good property management? It could be the way you like to run your properties and that reflecting in your property management. For me I like a property manager that knows what is needed and not necessary. I think it is also what kind of property you are renting. I am renting a “full-service trailor park”. So I am expected to pay all the bills and more, but how much more? I get the feeling my tenants are going to try to find problems so I keep telling my property manager to only cover what we have to or we raise the rent. What are your thoughts?

Lastly, I have received all the Deed of Trust and promissary note on the property and will complete the deal this week.


Trailor park success to be or not to be?

Well all I’ve got to say to yaw financial blog readers out there ya hear is that my good old trailor park will be a success becomes I’m going to make it one. I’m a proud trailor park owner. Below is a picture of some of my lots of trailors I own that will generate my future retirement with the right plans to help people and help myself. (Click to enlarge picture)

trailor park

I’m currently collecting enough cashflow to pay my mortgage, property manager, and all utilities.
What I feel I need to do as a landlord and real estate investor is to sell off my trailors as “home ownership” to the tenants to create long-term tenants that will fix up their own trailors over the time they own it and receive a small tax break on their taxes for interest they paid on their mortgage note. Then I’d receive longer-term tenants leasing the land the trailor is own. If they defaulted on their loan I’d foreclose on them and take back the trailor since I’m the bank.
I’d inflate the prices on the trailors I sell on my land to create low enough payments to be more affordable then they are currently renting them for to create an incentive to buy the home they are in. I’d still pay all utilities (water, gas, electricity, cable) as a full service trailor/rv park, but I would not have to pay for upgrading and repairing the trailors saving me a lot of money. I’d also be able to sell my mortgage notes at a discount to investors to earn back my initial investment of $10,000 and possibly a lot more. My goal is to buy 4 more trailors on the 4 empty lots and sell all 10 for at least $10-15k each collecting my mortgage note cashflow plus my land rent of around $200 a lot. If I could pull this task off with my property manager cooperating and on his game I should be able to pull off around a $3,500 net cashflow.

As easy as it sounds it is not in the least. I do understand great costs will be ahead. I am already redoing the flooring in a couple of trailors and some cosmetics to sell them. I’m also paying for better upkeep of the land they are on for better curb or should I say trailor appeal.
I’m hooking up a coin operated dryer and washer to increase my income. I know the tenants will use them and I’m actually considering building a mini-laundry mat on my property because its a major road and there aren’t any near by. I figure if I invested in at least 5 of each washer and dryer and charged $2.00 a load it could be worth building a small structure just for having people come, park, and wash their clothes, plus having my own tenants using them.

I took out a loan and I’m trying to use the least of it as possible. Unless buying more trailors I don’t want to invest anymore then $20,000 into the property because I want to pay back my loan before the payments are due. At the same time I need to create a master plan to make this trailor park a success in a rather small town in no-where Tennessee. There is a lot of traffic daily near my piece of land and many apartments are near it so a small laundry mat could possibly be a good idea to own. Have any thoughts?


HOKU, new recent real estate, and juggling college classes

Currently in the world of the finance ninja he has purchased his second real estate deal. The property is an RV/Trailor park in Tennessee. He has also enrolled in 3 online college classes getting closer to finish his BA, and his stocks holdings have still not changed -$21,000.

Why not talk in the third person?

About 2 weeks ago I believe I purchased HOKU JAN 2008 17.5 CALL options. I should of actually put a GTC up 100%, but of course I didn’t. Currently I’m up around 50%. I feel the stock has much more room to grow and I bought tons of time so I could receive a larger return.
Although HOKU is doing well I only had $1000 to invest so due to my negative -$21000 balance on the stocks owned my networth is still very unhappy with my bad decisions during the new year of 2007 trading.

As for my real estate developments I already know what you are thinking. How can I be purchasing real estate with no money left and who would want to buy a trailor park? Well, I went to a real estate game club that plays Rich Dad Poor Dad’s Cashflow and they sell real estate university packages with a website and company that prepares real estate deals for you. I didn’t buy into it, but for a bran new person it might be a great idea. Personally buying real estate isn’t that hard expecially when you are paying all the closing costs for other people to do everything for you. I actually have been looking on ebay.com real estate listing and loopnet.com listings. They offer a site called investorconcierge.com where you have to pay $3000 just to see the listings. Honestly I think that is crazy because there are already millions of listings available you can do advanced searches on to find bargains to start a real estate portfolio. Also to have full access to the site and first picks on the properties that aren’t any better then any others you have to end up paying around $21,000. Now if you want to do that great, but I’d rather take $21,000 and buy a properties or properties with that money instead of waste it on a 40 CD audio/video course I’m never going to take the time to watch because I’m spending 100% of my time on the internet searching properties and talking to professionals about buying them. Setting up deals isn’t hard. If you can do math then you can figure out if the property you are looking at will make you money. Speaking of properties the RV/Trailor park I bought in Tennessee, a state I’ve only driven through going to California, I found off ebay.com. I usually try to avoid ebay, but most people selling properties there usually have no luck selling in town possibly because its too small with no buyers interested or there to flip a properties quickly for a resale for a quick gain, but the property might be still very underpriced for its value. This RV/trailor park came across as an awesome deal if all things work out of course. It has 1.5 acres of land off a main highway near town. It has 10 units with 6 currently being rented. The owner owned all 6 units which were included in the property of sale. Each unit rents for an average of $450/month. Doing some quick math that is $2700/month income. The owner was selling the full park for $90,000 and offered owner financing at 10% if he got the full $90,000 with a mortgage note of $700/month. The owner/landlord pays all utilities of water, sewage, electricity, and cable of around $600/month.
So the net profit off this property with only 6 units rented is $1400/month or $18,850/year because he rents them weekly not monthly so that is an extra 4 weeks of rent (before property management fee of 10% net will be $1100/month). This is more than a seamn or E-3 makes in the USCG or Navy. His auction was up for a little less than 15 days I believe more than enough time for other investors to catch their eye. I’m surprised no one bought it sooner then I did. I basically just did some research on the town, talked to the owner, and found a property manager to take over the property for me since I will be an absent owner. All the seller wanted was at least $10,000 down which was reasonable and my student loans I took out for college and investing since that is my main independent study came to use finally. Anyone can take out a $40,000 student loan from any major lender. It isn’t very hard and you can use them for many things as long as you are a full-time student. I plan to use the remaining amount for a 3rd property and the rest two buy 4 more trailors for the park. That’s right. Four more trailors only renting at $400/month each would increase my cashflow to $4300 with a net of over $2700/month. Most likely my utilities would go up some, but not likely to double. As for why would the owner sell it for so cheap? I asked him. His answer was reasonable. He said he bought it 3 years earlier and it was a dump and dead. He put 6 old cheap trailors on them and fixed them up and now looking to sell it to go onto another deal. I figure he must of not put more than $30,000 into the 6 trailors and the piece of land. So selling it for $90,000 3 years later is an awesome deal for him and myself since the park produces a very good income. I plan to pay off the remaining $80,000 I owe him on a note sooner to increase my cashflow another $700 which would make it around $2100 with only 6 units occupied. I’m pretty psyched about the deal and my property manager seems very sharp and willing to do a good job. The property manager will earn 10% of all rental income so he wants to help me get those other spots filled increasing his cashflow. I will collect my first rent next week around July 11th.
I plan to build it up, buy more trailors to rent, and pay off the note within 2-5 years.

I enrolled in 3 college online classes in HPU. I expect to get underway soon and will likely blog more occassionally because I have nothing better else to do stuck on the boat once my watch is finished. I study, write some music, and research stocks. This is a normal day underway after work. I like to sleep a lot too, but drills prevent sleep so you do everything else in between. I’m finally qualified so I’ll only have to train for drills which will open more time.

As for am I happy? Well that real estate deal even though it cost me $10,000 felt like buying a bran new car even though it is very new or pretty. I haven’t been very happy lately. Actually this girl I asked to dance and talked to at a concert is really bugging me. I really wish I’d gotten her phone number instead of giving her my fun looking business card! Well I guess I might learn next time, or not. I’m getting fat too. As for personal life fatness sucks. No ninja is quick or stealth-like getting fatter. I plan to exercise more, do more push-ups, and sit-ups, but I have yet to get started. Why? Hmm… a little bit of lazy-ness most likely… Underway you usually get fatter since all you do is eat. I plan to only eat cereal and soups. This should cut down and help me keep that extra sea fat off.

well aloha
-fn


FOMC Meeting – The Fed Effect on the Stock Market

Well we are heading into the FOMC meeting where everyone gets nervous about things we already know, Feds not going to cut rates any lower, duh! Most likely when the Feds make a statement to the public annoucing they will not be cutting rates for the entire year at first the stock market will panic and then come to its senses because its already been a known fact that has been engrained into our daily stock market media news.

Current prices in Hawaii’s home market (the housing sector of the market) is tanking putting smiles on cheap investors like me. I wouldn’t call a 240 sqft studio with $400/condo fees for $136,000 cheap, but compared to just 2 months ago the sellers were asking $160,000 which is a big cut. Hundreds of homes and condos in Hawaii’s high priced selling market are finally coming down because buyers aren’t willing to pay those prices and they are truly not affordable making renting the smarter choice. Now I am actually looking to buy again getting approved for a new loan. If I do get qualified I will buy something in the middle of downtown Waikiki near the surfing beaches and shops for a prime rental unit later down the road. Even if my mortgage and condo fees together cost me $1500/month I can easily rent it for $3,000/month or $750/week to vacationers looking for a hot spot to stay in. Average hotel room is $150-300/night so for $100/night it is a bargain to own and use as a rental. Now I just need to get approved.

The Fed meeting will more likely increase rates so you really want to buy before this happens. If rates go down that is a good thing to lockin on a 30 year fixed mortgage. My current income is only around $44,000 plus if I do anything part-time might add another $6,000 a year. If I make any serious chunks of money in trading stock options I use that to pay off my mortgage or car first. I’m hoping to advance and get a nice $500 extra pay raise a month before 2008. Depending on how the Fed talks positive or negative on the current economy stocks could stay flat or turn sharply in either direction. This is basically the Fed’s effect on investors in the market making them panic or be confident about their portfolio. It really doesn’t matter for me I just want to know a fixed answer from them.

Another thing I’d like to mention in this blog with my condo buying info is that now because I did buy my first new car and have a $430/month payment it will hurt me most likely in borrowing power to buy a condo. The fact is I don’t want to get something that will gobble up my entire paycheck at the same time if I buy something else to rent out I will still have that new mortgage plus the cost I will have to pay to rent my own place in hawaii which will most likely come out to the same or more. I’d really like to own a condo in Hawaii. I blog about if I able to get one or not with the lowered prices soon. If I get a second job that would be an extra stream of income to pay off my car which I want to do first to increase my cashflow again.

Currently the market isn’t doing much but recently OIL energy stocks are really showing a change in direction and I’m playing PUTS on OIH. I basically need it to hit around $129 to call me out to make 25%. I also think NUE, AAPL, and CMG are about to head higher.


Apple Computer iPhone, AAPL option trade, Condo Investments

Apple Computer’s announcement of its new iPhone and iTv was no surprise as the stock dropped 3 pts right before CEO Steve Jobs came out with the iPhone around noon PST. As soon as it was shown investors bought in confidence AAPL stock and it rose up 8%. The following day buyers that did not buy the first day tried to get in on the action raising the price another 5%. This is when I had the decision to sell my AAPL JAN 07 100 Calls and get out +$2000 instead of being negative -$4300 just 3 days before!

I’m pretty impressed by the sleek look of the new iPhone and I’m even considering changing my Cingular RAZR for it if it works easy. I keep my cell phone on me all the time and have a nano iPod and I actually really want my iPod in my phone. I think the iPhone idea is brilliant and will be a profit machine for growth for 2007 AAPL balance sheet. The only shortfall to the iPhone is its small harddrive for space. Until a new iPhone comes out I might not get it because its small 4/8gig harddrive is just not enough for all my songs, video podcasts, and data to store on it. This could be the new wave of ultra-small computer devices. Yes, Palm has been out for a while but it was more of a mini-desk organizer then a phone or music player. I owned the sweet Palm phone (silver) back in 2000 for $400 so buying a $500 iPhone really isn’t that big of deal. I do not find price a problem here. Just harddrive space at the moment I think will upset new iPhone users like myself.

As for the stock play I did on AAPL this trade definitely wasn’t the worst trade I’ve ever done because my GRMN trade being +300% and not selling before earnings Nov 15, 2006 is definitely the worst trade. This will have to be my 2nd worst trade of 2006 just because the smart thing would of been to buy these option contracts just days before the Mac Expo. I should of sold out at a $500 loss earlier and bought back in at $.20-30 per contract and bought over 100 and made such a bigger % and income from the trade probably half of my USCG salary in less that 3 days! I am journaling this for next time. What I did do which is good trading but isn’t bad either since it helped me get out profitable was I bought in increments when the stock price went down so my ending cost basis for my options was $1.22 per option and I sold my options at $2.05 giving me almost a 100% profit for around 35 trading days or about a month. Again, bad trading. I’m sure their are some investors that are reading this that are thinking this is a fantastic gain in such a short time, but believe me this is really bad trading, although I sold before earnings and didn’t hold my options being greedy. Because of this reason I have already improved 100% personally and more disciplined.

I saw AAPL starting to hit a ceiling today and thought to myself I’d rather have money in the bank right now then be wrong about tomorrow. I sold before the option pricing starting to go down with the close of the day. In after hours Cisco came out with a big “I’m sueing Apple over iPhone name patent”. So my thinking of I could be wrong tomorrow was a smart move. AAPL stock is pretty bullish right now so hitting $110 or even $120 by earnings is possible, but its also possible it could fall hard right after earnings. For this reason, today, I am happy in Hawaii.

My next trade will most likely be FXI Puts with its strong new trend downward all charts are showing a downtrend and lots of profit taking is happening. I don’t care to be right I just want to perform in my trading for 2007. I’d rather be wrong and sell out early and keep my money.

As for my Mexico property investment the new terms are better on a condo I looked at while I was there even closer to the beach I am in the process of putting a purchase contract on for $560,000 Pesos or converted to USD $52,000 and I’d have to put around $5000 into renovations then rent it for 4-6 months a year to break even. This condo is less expensive than the smaller home I would have liked to buy, but now I am thinking this is the better rental income investment over time.

Another idea I had was build a decent size log cabin on some land in Virginia and rent it out as a hunters lodge during hunting season, ski resort people looking for a private place, weekend retreaters, and churches for retreats. Right now I don’t feel I could really do it well without help and none of my family is really interested at the moment so I will make this a project for later possibly.

As for beginning the new year of 2007 I’m pretty happy being sold out of all my options and feel I have a fresh start of trading wiser and more disciplined this year. For one thing I’m going to stop depositing money into my stock account to trade. I’m just going to build up my savings, something I’ve never really done before. I’ll probably use that money to pay off my car loan because that would free up $400 a month I could keep saving and not worry about that loan payment by the time I’m out of the USCG.

I hope this was helpful to any young or old investors out there. Lesson today is not to be greedy and sell when you are happy.

An article I liked on Apple Computer’s hype and glory for the secretcy of it’s products was done great by a blogger from the Utility Belt. Also here is an article on the growing middle class of Mexico starting a mortgage boom that will help build Mexico’s growing economy by BusinessWeek Online. A good article on the iPhone and how it will definitely change the computer-phone industry by theStreet.com did a great job here.