Take a deep breath, everyone, and relax: the real estate market is here to stay.
Yes, Donald Trump is leading the Republican pack, Chelsea Clinton is old enough to be having her second baby, and the price of gas has dropped decently below the $2 per gallon mark.
End times? Maybe so.
But as our world continues to turn, and so does the real estate market, the good news is that the market is experiencing what promises to be a slow-but-steady continuation of more good news.
What happened? Well, after the market crashed in 2009, much of the “Get Rich Quick” mentality that had swamped the real estate industry evaporated into thin air, and rightly so. We also witnessed a historic collapse of large lending banks and mortgage institutions under the pressure of a balloon-inflated market that was driven by greed and “creative” financing, to put it mildly.
Working as a real estate sales manager in Atlanta during the Good Years, it was really hard for most people, me included, to envision the approaching recession. Even more difficult to predict was the housing shift that was about to take place.
Like many professionals, I was both an unknowing victim of the collapse that was happening (right before my eyes), and an active contributor to it. It’s hard to see danger looming when the money is pouring in.
Were there red flags? Sure. The fact that people with bottomed-out credit scores were purchasing houses and getting new car loans approved should have signaled a huge systemic problem. But when the cash is flowing, it only pushes my determination to go out and sell more homes.
With hindsight, we now know that unscrupulous investors and firms manipulated the system to take advantage of the entire U.S. market, and despite warning signs that pointed to the impending collapse, there was no regulatory follow-up; no one on Wall Street, lenders or banks, was willing to make the hard choices until it was too late. Ka-boom!
The catalog of the names of the victims of foreclosed homes and destroyed credit scores is too long to recount here. Many lost their homes, jobs, investments, and retirement savings.
And yet, the fact remains that through tough times and good ones, and especially now in this increasingly better market, Americans love real estate. That’s cause for optimism.
I am often approached by consumers, mortgage lenders, and investors asking me the same question: “Is the market back?”
And my answer is always the same: “Yes!” The market is back, seemingly to stay, so if you’re sitting on the fence, get off it, and go find the deals while you can. Just as in the “Good Old Days,” and what some might now call the “Better Days,” you have to strike when the market is right. Timing, as they say, is everything.
Regardless of trends in the marketplace, here are a few tips to keep in mind:
- Follow up
- Stay optimistic
Merrick Damon Williams
MerrickDamon Residential Brokerage
Georgia, Florida, Costa Rica