Monday, August 22, 2011

Time To Reboot

I spent some time with a friend of mine, and a former Charlottean, over the weekend.  As we walked around the city, looking at its strength, a diverse population, good weather, new construction, continued growth, moderate taxes, etc.  My friend is an artist, and she "sees" things.  She said it must be amazing to be here now.

I thought a lot about what she said.  The times are difficult as a large part of my business has shifted from sales to rentals.  At times, things can seem overwhelming.  Her comments made me look back to what I have written in previous articles in this blog.  Many articles concern new industries moving to this region.  I have written about how a major complex, Fifth & Poplar, has seemingly turned the corner, and is now becoming a highly sought address.  I have written of how the increased demand for downtown living, a combination of rentals and sales, is higher than it has EVER been.

Major issues like the Democratic Convention, the potential of downtown baseball, two new parks coming into the city, the expansion of light rail, UNCC opening a downtown classroom building, Northeastern University putting a location in downtown, Wake Forest Masters program moving to downtown are all filling the public debate, and all will add to property values

There is much to be excited about.

So when we read of housing prices being down or up from month to month, how do we reconcile those seemingly different stories.  The data seems to have somehow gotten truncated or corrupt, it just doesn't seem to make sense.

The analogy here is that when our computers sometimes become crammed with remnants of programs, we need to "Reboot" the system to clear out the cobwebs.  The government is not going to fix our economy.  Multinational corporations are not going to fix our economy.  We are! 

We have all heard "Buy low, Sell high" well we are at the Low time.  Valuation on available property is hovering around the 2003 levels, very affordable.  Interest rates are at historic lows.  Over 80% of the available financially distressed properties in downtown Charlotte have sold this calendar year, only 14 remain listed in MLS.  Someone is getting the message.

We need to "Reboot" our thinking.  As sellers we need to determine which is most important, the amount of profit from the sale of property, or moving on with life.  As buyers we need to stop trying to figure where the bottom of the market is, and select a unit and a price that allows us to buy low.  We control those things!

Things are different, and may never be the same.  That does not mean that opportunities don't exist.


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