Over 20 Million Houses Sitting Vacant-Fabian Calvo

By Greg Hunter’s USAWatchdog.com 

Real estate expert Fabian Calvo says there’s more to the story about rising prices in the housing market than what’s reported by the mainstream media.  Calvo charges, “There’s a tremendous amount of manipulation . . . Yes, prices have gone up 3%.  I see it, but it’s because the inventory has been suppressed on purpose by big players . . . not foreclosing on properties.” Calvo should know because he runs a company called TheNoteHouse.us.  It buys and sells $100 million annually in distressed debt and real estate.  Calvo says, “Over 20 million houses, on any given night in America, are completely sitting vacant.” 

According to Calvo, the economy is being helped by “shadow stimulus.”  It’s coming from millions of underwater homeowners who have stopped making mortgage payments.  Calvo says, “Money that would have been otherwise allocated towards a housing payment is going into consumer spending.”  The Fed is also propping up housing by suppressing interest rates.  Calvo says the fragile real estate market would crash if rates rose just a little, and he adds, “That’s why you’re going to see low interest rates . . . through 2015 or until there’s some kind of dollar or bond crisis.”  Join Greg Hunter as he goes One-on-One with Fabian Calvo.

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  1. JILL

    20 Million empty houses!!!
    “In 2009, the US Census Bureau reports all housing units totalling in at 130 million 159 thousand.
    Also in 2009 91,241,000 total housing units for single detached and mobile homes in the United States with 79,918,000 total occupied year round. And of these, some are renters and some are owner occupied.”

    Greg, I don’t know what has changed in three years but the 20 Mil represents nearly 22% of all housing.Add that to the Feb buying 90% of all US Treasuries (Bloomberg), we should all head for the exits of the US financial system.
    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year…I hope

    • Greg

      Thank you Jill and Johnny.


      WELL, if we were persons that actually have a legitimate job/ pay our taxes / and continue to look for real estate that has faultered, can we help our America to build without Our President Obama ?



      SIGNED ,


  2. Johnny Dangereaux

    Time for #OccupyEmptyHouse

  3. jc

    Greg there are several homes in my area (nashville tn)empty yet not for sale. One of them was a friend i know that was forclosed on in 2009 still not on the market. I have been getting the list of county tax lein auction sales list. Iv noticed the property taxes on these homes are so much higher then the others around them. There may be even more munipulation in the local government as well.

    • Greg

      Thank you JC for the front line reporting.

  4. AndyB

    Greg: excellent post. One caveat about that 3% number; it’s not inflation adjusted. In real terms, home prices across the spectrum have actually declined YOY.

    • Greg

      great point man!!!

  5. Doctor


    There is a reason this is happening and it has to do with accumulating power over Americans. Interest rates are being kept low and inventories off of the market in order to allow moneyed interests to accumulate these properties for pennies on the dollar. Then, once the properties have been accumulated, these interests can hold the threat of homelessness over the heads of Americans. What we are witnessing is nothing less than the methodical, insidious transfer of wealth from the middle class and working class to the 1% in order to destroy the willingness of Americans to oppose the takeover of their nation. Make no mistake, moneyed interests are doing this on purpose and for reasons that have more to do with power than with profit.

    • Greg

      Thank you Doctor.

    • Ph.T

      . it was true in the Great Depression,
      this strategy of creating desperation
      and then Power buys everything for pennies,
      but that doesn’t tell us why it’s happening now .
      . we have cycles of out-breeding our job market,
      but this time is different because
      we will permanently need much fewer workers .
      . these houses will have to be sold very cheap,
      because the best use of that land
      requires some expensive rework:
      bulldozing entire neighborhoods
      and replacing them with hydroponic greenhouses .

  6. Mitch Bupp

    As a contractor working on those foreclosed homes I agree with Fabian. The shadow inventory is being hidden. And many of the homes the banks does have on the market are over-priced and will not sell.

    The whole system is rigged to prevent a deflation in home prices. Fannie and Freddie back-stopped 75 percent of mortgages which means that the government would buy those properties (if they went into foreclosure) at the loan balance that was owed against the home. Public auctions which in the past rid the system of the bad loans now only keeps them in the system as the banks milk the properties for 100 percent of maintenance costs and 100 percent of the principal.

    The bottom of the real estate market has not been reached. This is more about stopping the assets flowing out of the real estate bubble. Even with such low interest rates the housing market is essentially flat.

    If you remember Greg, I have said this before … this is the way the banks are stopping the deflation associated with the real estate bubble. Fannie and Freddie are part of this back-stop of deflation stopping the market from recovering.

    Fabian is right … interest rates can not go up … with out destroying our anemic economy and the real estate market.

    what about “reverse mortgages”? They are also a big scam to access equity of saver who are now retired and SSI poor because of the false inflations rates by the CPI that have cut SSI payments by what I estimate to be 50 percent of the retired persons SSI. I would like to see if John Williams agrees with me on the SSI and reduced benefits from the phony CPI numbers.

    • Greg

      Thank you for the up close and personal reporting from the heartland!!

  7. Blair

    Hey Craig
    Not sure if it’s my iPhone, but the. Video won’t go past a couPle of minutes.

    • Greg

      I think it’s your cell the site and You Tube are fine. Thank you for your support!!

  8. JoeJustJoe

    Good guest this time, Greg. Fabian Calvo has a very good handle on what is actually going on in ALL markets that are controlled by the Wall St moneyrunner banks …”even gold” as he said. 😉 Nice “try” on getting him to agree that interest rates will be rising anytime soon. He mentioned how rates will stay low thru 2015. As you already know…I agree wholeheartedly. Any spike up in rates will be just a blip. And you had better get friendly with the dollar too. The bottomline is just like I said. Stop paying on your credit cards, America! Stop paying your mortgage on the home that is now under water by 30% to 50%!!! Trust me, if everybody did that we would get to where we are going anyway ALOT faster *-)

    • Greg

      Thank you Joe!

    • JoeJustJoe

      If any of your readers n listeners wish to see what Fabian was talking about on the charts they can simply look at either of the 2 U.S. zombie banks I mentioned (Citigroup (C) or Bankof America (BAC))on their respective 4 year daily charts back to 2009. One can clearly see how neither has recovered anywhere near what the rest of the market has done with respect to 2008-2009 meltdown losses. That’s because the Wall St crooks know the very companies they are running money for are in fact already defunct. It’s probably why Little Timmy Geithner decided to call it quits come Jan. I’m sure he can see that Uncle Bens plan isn’t working.

  9. Harold Bell

    The main reason for this situation is the banks do not foreclose because they can show these properties as assets and not losses. That way they are meeting government liquidity requirements. Anyone can check this out by looking for foreclosed properties for sale, and lets say the price is only $100 k, but when you look at the state tax rate the actual price on their books might be $250 k. If these banks played by the rules about 75% of them would have been bankrupt by now. The Federal Government is pumping in $40 billion a month into the banking society just to keep them going because if not these guys would gone, gone gone! They are doing this to keep the economy from collapsing, and to be frank, this might be the only way it can be done. What scares me is foreign countries no longer will purchase T-Bills, so the government creates fiat money (money printed at will) to purchase its own debt instruments, and then make it the taxpayers responsibility. How the hell did this happen? You elected these fools, and they are making you pay for it!

  10. john gaskins

    if one visits ziprealty.com and looks up 21 gramercy irvine, calif. the price history shows this dwelling bought and sold on average over 3 times a month starting with the month of february 2012. i have noticed this freaky info on several other dwellings. i may not understand this completely, but it sure seems hinkey.

    • Dean in MT

      Now THAT is weird, John. How did you happen to find this property and the others you have seen with similar history? NOBODY buys for $713,000 on 6/6/12 and then sells for $474,000 on 6/11/12-period. I emailed one of the realtors listed in the ad asking for an explanation but I’m not waiting to exhale until I hear from him-

      • Dean in MT

        Well, I was wrong…here’s the reply I received from the realtor:

        Len Malena

        Dec 4 (1 day ago)

        to me
        Hi Dean,

        The confusion over the pricing of 21 Gramercy is largely due to the fact there are numerous condos with the address 21 Gramercy but they have different unit #’s and different APN’s once they are sold by the builder. For instance, 21 Gramercy 415 was recently sold for 525k.
        This one that you asked about is APN#930-24-625 (not sure of unit #) and was originally sold by the builder in May 2012 and is now being resold by the current owner.

        Also leading to confusion, the builder has been entering generic listings on the MLS for multiple homes at 21 Gramercy with the following agent notes “Brand New Lennar Home. Pictures are not of actual home for sale but show clubhouse and area”. Right now there are 4 of these such homes/listings in escrow.

  11. Roy Conelly

    Nice post Greg! I think this is a “must read” article so far. Thanks for sharing this your brilliant views!

    • Greg

      My views are shaped by facts and the facts look very bad–especially for the unprepared. Thank you for your comment and support.

  12. Gweedo

    Greg and Fabian…

    Thanks for this. While my wife and I were looking to possibly upsize in Florida I started connecting the dots on the vacant properties (that weren’t for sale), low interest rates, and, thus, the strange rise in home pricing (caused by a combination of smaller supply via shadow-inventory and higher demand due to low interest rates).

    What I didn’t think of was the market mis-allocation that Fabian mentioned – the $$ that aren’t going to housing but instead the local market from people not paying their mortgage or maintaining their property.

    Also, didn’t know about the local competition from Blackrock funds with major dollars.

    Keep it coming!

    • Greg

      Thank you Gweedo for the comment and reporting!!

  13. tsuki

    I live in Florida. The area is mainly seasonal with an emphasis on second, third and fourth residences. The houses of the rich are still in private ownership, but because of the economy and the oil spill, the houses of the credit card rich (my term) went into foreclosure. At first the exclusive gated communities tried to absorb the inventory, but eventually the banks took the houses to foreclosure. These houses are still not on the market.

    The question that I would like for you to ask next time (forgive the impertinence)is:

    If we have 114 million households, and 20 million houses in foreclosure:

    How many are secondary homes?
    What will be the effect of housing prices and recovery if the secondary homes are dumped on the market?


    • Greg

      Housing prices will not recover for at least a decade. Wait until interest rates go back up. When you combine an environment of suppressed interest rates with bulging shadow inventory you can only have price contractions for a very long time. Thank you for checking in.

  14. JosephConrad

    If state and local governments don’t start taking over vacant homes by meminent domain and selling them to buyers to raise revenue, cities, town and communities will die and never return. The Old White American Wealthy have destroyed this nation without ciizens doing anything to them in return! hey must be made to feel the pain they are cause millions of others through THEFT, GREED & DISCEET!

    • Ph.T

      . Wall Street certainly did trash the economy;
      but you can’t blame it all on them:
      if we would have created a scarcity of workers,
      (eg, had we let the rich do our breeding),
      if we had not been so uncoordinated as to
      promote such a high living standard
      only to allow our jobs to be sent overseas .
      . all these things lead to such utter defeat .
      — sincerely, Old White American (non-so)Wealthy .

  15. Nichole

    Hey Greg,

    Great info! I have been struggling to purchase a home in the Delmarva USA area for the past 9 months. Most properties priced to sell have multiple bids and its hard to stay in the game. Or the foreclosed houses mysteriously go off the market as soon as I show interest in buying it.

    There is also something phishy going on in the lending industry. I am a well qualified buyer but I want to finance the property. The lender will tell me I am approved and then when I need approval for the contract they tell me they no longer offer the loan they approved me for. Weird! I have tried single family houses, condos, and investment units. It always seems like the buyer is the one in the dark and when you ask questions or assert yourself in the deal they drop you like a hot potato.

    “Too young to know anything…too old to care.” Nichole: Delaware

    • Greg

      Thank you Nichole for the real world info!!

  16. Anne

    I think Little Timmy TurboTax Geithner is buggin out just in time….

  17. David

    I am not sure I agree with these numbers. I will have to do my own research. Not sure where I should begin to look to find honest, accurate information. Nothing personal, but I can’t believe everything I read. Too many conspiracy theorists out there along with people who spread disinformation.

    Thanks for reading. Have a nice day.

    Best Regards

    • Greg

      I had the same question by someone else and before I put the interview up I found a source from CNBC from Jan 2011 that quoted 18.5 million empty homes. So I think the 20 million number is a good number. I hope that helps.

  18. The Turk

    I am still amazed at how many dunces discounted and still discount the price of gasoline’s effect on commuter home owners or prospective commuter home owners.
    If you drive to work and you commute from a suburb it just costs too much to own a home. Overlay the increase in gas prices caused by speculators that do not produce or sell gasoline at a retail level to the foreclosure numbers and you will see that it was and still is gasoline prices that make commuting less attractive.
    Gas prices must fall to encourage home ownership. It will also help economic growth. We need to build 20 more refineries and create the capacity to refine and distribute gasoline at a targeted price of $1.80 again if you ever want to see a recovery.

  19. Jimmy


    So what happens to home prices if we see a full blown currency crisis? Wouldn’t home prices eventually go up? This means we should buy a house soon?

    • Greg

      In my view, in a full blown crisis, where the dollar goes into free-fall, interest rates would spike and that includes mortgages. Imagin what the real estate market would be like with mortgage interest rates at 8%? That’s the short answer, I hope that helps.

  20. chuck brown

    Did you know about the reports that Calvo allegedly is a slumlord? See following:

    • Greg Hunter

      chuck brown,
      I brought that up in my first interview with him. The newspaper made many false charges, and I think Calvo is in the process of suing the newspaper. Before the article went public, Calvo told me that he told the writer of the article of many inaccuracies and false statements. You bringing this up now is case in point why Calvo is probably going to take legal action to get the record corrected. I saw the article, and I am surprised how it passed any kind of editorial or legal process. We will be having Calvo on again, and We will talk about this again. I am sure he would love to provide an update.

  21. KM

    I’m 58 y/O and disabled as well as my wife. Been kicked around by affirmative action, discrimatated against because I had open heart when I was looking for a job. My health issues scare any employer from considering me. The VA is slowly killing me through the mistakes they Make on a regular basis. And I will never be able to own a home. Why are there empty homes held back by banks when they could donate one to people in positions like mine for the write-off? Greedy millionaires don’t know what it’s like to be unable to do something about improving your situation, when the system worked against you. How about helping American citizens for a change?

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