I’m Frustrated With Real Estate
This Real Estate market is killing me. Anyone else feel the same? Every time things start looking better in the world, up pops something to knock a table leg out and start the worldwide economy teetering once again. And this has been going on since 2008!
As soon as these fear headlines hit the major media outlets, everyone starts hunkering down expecting the bottom to fall out everywhere. And maybe it will, just not around here. Now I’m not saying it won’t affect our local housing markets, I’m just pointing out it won’t be for economic fundamentals but rather for F.U.D.
If you aren’t familiar with F.U.D., it’s fear uncertainty and doubt. Fear is what can drive the markets down quickly, whether it’s stocks, housing or gold. Uncertainty can leave the markets without any movement as people sit on their hands waiting to see what direction the market is heading and doubt is what creeps into everyone’s minds when nothing positive is happening. It‘s the cycle we seem to be stuck in for the last several years.
Perhaps part of it is our sheltered existence here in Alberta along with our short selective memories. It seems like there are a couple of different mindsets out there, but the loudest ones locally are the ones talking about how bad things are, how tough it is and how many cutbacks and layoffs are occurring around us.
Many of these people selectively recall how incredible it was during 2006 and how Alberta was literally paved with streets of gold. My how things have changed, now instead of it being spectacular, it’s just good and good isn’t good enough anymore.
Maybe I’m just talking to the wrong people, but the roofer, Samuel, I met last week who had just moved here from Quebec couldn’t believe all the opportunity for him here. He had a job lined up before he arrived and two new offers before he started Monday, just by making some phone calls. He had to leave his wife and young child behind, but he wasn’t working in Quebec, now in a month or slightly longer he can bring his family here.
Same with Michael from Virginia whom I met earlier this week that just moved here to work, Hamil from France who I talked to this morning and is arriving Sunday for work and how about Rey from BC who starts his new job on the 24th in Calgary. Yep, things are awful here. At least until you understand how crappy things are elsewhere.
Time for some cold hard facts. Alberta is leading the country is weekly earnings. We get paid more here than anywhere else in Canada. We’re usually near the top in increases in wages every time the reports come out, our unemployment is among the lowest in Canada and we have billions of dollars worth of the energy that makes the world turn under our soil. True it’s not as it was in 2006, but things are darn good compared to just about everywhere else, and I’m not talking just in North America but in most of the developed countries!
Yet F.U.D. prevails. So we will continue to be mired for several more months as the Greek crisis resolves itself, then likely the next issue will pop up (probably more US financial issues) leaving us mired even longer, meanwhile many of the people who see the big picture and who have long term views, will be slowly buying select properties in the province. They’ll continue to collect ever increasing rents due to the renewed in-migration and “secret” prosperity occurring before their very eyes. Steadfastly waiting for many of their friends and neighbours to call them lucky in a few years when the masses suddenly realize it isn’t so bad. When all along they know they weren’t lucky, they were just observant and not falling victim to F.U.D.
Our Perspective is Whacked
I was going to use stronger language there, but held back. Feel free to read it any way you want. I cannot take credit for this observation and I cannot recall where I heard it, but think about this. This recession was a cake walk when you compare it to the Great Depression.
During the Great Depression people were not lined up down the street to buy the latest piece of technology, they were lining up for soup kitchens. During this recession, Apple has become the largest company in the world by selling expensive phones, expensive computers and expensive tablets. And people were lining up! Damn times are tough.
During the Great Depression workers were moving their whole families across the country with the hope of being able to find food. During this recession unions are negotiating for cost of living increases. Damn times are tough.
These are just a couple of observations that come to mind. If you live in Alberta you are situated in one of the best places on the planet to improve your life, at least for the next five years, so tell the naysayers to give their head a shake and move somewhere else if times are so bad. In the meantime, take advantage of this timing, while so many are timid and scared to move forward and see where you can take your life!