The local casualty list:
Mervyns--boo hoo, cute clothes at great prices
Linens n Things
random Japanese restaurant that had just ironed out the kinks and become a good place to eat
my favorite Thai restaurant
countless other small local businesses
Really, how "bad" will this recession be?? There are hundreds of empty/abandoned/foreclosed houses here, as time goes on the weeds get taller, more graffiti adorns the walls, and the danger of vandals accidentally setting a fire grows. It is freaking depressing to drive down a street and see these empty homes. I can't feel any sympathy for the greedy investors who thought they were buying a 400k bargain as an investment, then lost their shirts when they weren't able to flip their "bargains" as expected, and when the rental market shriveled up because they were WAY more homes than renters. The opening of a UC doesn't mean there will be a sudden mass migration of people to fill your overpriced homes, at astronomical rental fees, just because you are the idiot who paid $400k for a house in Merced AKA the butthole of the flea in the armpit hair of California. The upside of this, for us, is that we are moving closer to buying a home. I'm still leaning towards an older home with charm, but the rock bottom price for a big, upgraded house that has never even been lived in sounds pretty darn good. Benefiting from someone else's misfortune isn't usually my thing, but in this case I think my karma will survive intact.