Category Archives: Blog

Foreclosures and other dead ends






In case you ever fantasized about making a million or few by house flipping — There are two avowed official registries of foreclosures that take place in Prince George’s County, Maryland. One is included in the statewide registry maintained by the State of Maryland. The other is maintained by the Department of Permitting, Inspections and Enforcement (DPIE, pronounced “D-Pie,” as in “cherry pie”). Neither registry is… Read More

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Montana special election results coming






Gianforte hangs on to a commanding lead of three thousand votes out of 190,000 counted so far. Gianforte now builds to a two-point lead. Three thousand votes ahead of Rob Quist. About 187,000 votes counted. Not looking too positive for the Democrat at this moment. Almost 184,000 votes tabulated. Gianforte breaks out a percentage point ahead. Gianforte ahead by a thousand. Wonder whether this will… Read More

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Jurisdiction, courts, and filings






Searching for trustee filings is not a quick-and-easy process. The idea is that the filings would show which houses will be coming up on the market in foreclosure sales; this is the kind of tip passed along in online conversation threads for would-be investors who want to dabble in real estate. In Maryland, however, getting such information is easier said than done. I just spoke… Read More

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The other side of house flipping: pushing out the homeowners






Ironically, the Director of the Prince George’s County Department of Permitting, Inspections and Enforcement (DPIE) acquired his own residential property in the aftermath of the 2008-2009 mortgage derivatives debacle. The real property on Willes Vision Drive in Bowie, Maryland, owned by DPIE Director Haitham Hijazi, sold in October 2004 for $600,728. Real estate near Bowie and Upper Marlboro was looking up back then. Sadly, Maryland… Read More

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Wasn’t Hillary Clinton going to fire Comey?






This is the kind of observation that makes some people flap their hands and dismiss ‘What-ifs’, but if Hillary Clinton had been elected to the White House, wasn’t she going to fire the FBI’s James B. Comey? Comey’s July 5, 2016, press conference was criticized across the political spectrum. Comey announced that Clinton would not be prosecuted for her private email server–but he also castigated her “extremely… Read More

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House flippers help pressure homeowners into foreclosure






Reducing foreclosure ‘backlogs’ is not the same as reducing foreclosures. To reduce foreclosures, best we keep people in their homes. Unfortunately, a different strategy is too often pursued, at least in Prince George’s County–speeding up the foreclosures. The backlog of foreclosures still in the hopper in the county can thus be reduced, on the books. It’s a strategy that benefits real estate investors. House flippers with… Read More

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“Important Notice about Eviction”






Imagine coming home and finding a notice posted on your front door: A person who claims the right to possess this property believes that this property is abandoned. You just got home–from work, errands, visits. You’ve lived in the house for years; it’s your home. You and your relatives know the house well; so do your near neighbors. “Abandoned?” Potted plants on the front porch,… Read More

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Why is a P. G. County official (or his family) buying up foreclosed homes?






On October 14, 2016, my neighbor received a two-page letter from the bank holding her mortgage note, M&T Bank. As foreclosure letters go, it could have been worse, on paper. M&T told her that it was “reviewing” her “workout package.” “It is possible,” the bankers informed her, that “we may determine that additional information is needed.” “If we determine that additional information is needed,” they… Read More

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Good faith is an element in every contract






[Update May 2. Here is the reply to my question to the Maryland Attorney General’s office:] Your email to Attorney General Brian Frosh has been referred to me for response. You have inquired into whether the Maryland Attorney General could assist with the enforcement of contracts between authors and publishers. Under a valid contract between and author and a publisher, the parties are legally required… Read More

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How the Democrats keep losing. 2017, part 3. No, don’t make elections a ‘referendum on Trump’






This post will be short. The results of the special election in Georgia’s 6th congressional district will remain unknown until after the voting. (Yes, I know; it’s heterodox.) No predictions here. But a few facts are available now. For one–in heavy early voting, Republicans have caught up with Democrats. Today is the last day to vote early in the special; the GOP is projected to… Read More

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