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Tuesday, February 25, 2014

February 25, 2014

The Crucible of Real Estate

It is early, the shadow time between dawn and morning light. Most of the night and early morning I worked on my new project, repackaging myself after a long and tedious illness. My business is real estate for almost thirty years. Taking a modified break meant I read almost all of my regular periodicals.
I kept up without digging deep. These days, I wear my miner’s cap. I am looking for answers, for logic, for ways to say to my people, “Let’s have a plan, be careful with decisions, and do the math”.

The Great Recession brought many to their knees. There was the massive debt, the tidal waves of disappearing assets, fingers pointed, shadows in the back room and then our new understanding of foreclosure and short sale. Classes were taught about foreclosure and short sales. Agents and brokers scrambled in a play of musical chairs. Lives were broken. A new generation began the climb, rung by rung, with debt strapped to their backs as though it were a fad. We grew used to the language of The Great Recession. But it is over. We move on.

There is a new awareness. The government knows the climb out of the recession is by the boots of real estate, construction of homes and commercial buildings. The trappings continue with mortgages and the swift talk of more stringent requirements for the buyer and on the other hand, the confessions of financial institutions that they made mistakes and they pay a fine to the government. The small hands of those who wound up on the streets are empty.

The jargon expands. We are roiled up in Big Data. We are dancing the dance with numbers and stats and charts and words we are just hearing for the first time. The play unfolds. It is mesmerizing because the set and the stage itself is all digital. The dialogue, the discussion, the reporting, the way forward is an unrelenting cacophony, the smoke screen to the past.

How do I guide and advise, be a strong advocate, a patient shepherd to my folks who are buying and selling a home? Hopefully, by listening.