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NYSE traderWhat’s happening with the market?   I’m getting that question a lot along with its cousin, “What do you think is going to happen to the market?”  Now if I could accurately answer that, I wouldn’t be our schlepping real estate would I?   My response is, “I don’t know.”  At one point I’d have been more confident in an answer, but not in today’s environment.

I’ve long felt we were in a real estate bubble, but that was largely based on Fed policy and the continued debasement of the dollar.  However, as I learned the other day, there are only approximately 791,000 single family homes on the market in the U.S. compared to 2.6 million in 2006.  Get this…..there are over 1.5 million real estate agents in the U.S. according to the National Association of Realtors.  In addition, the 30 something population is now leaving Mom and Dad’s basements looking for housing.  Customarily they might rent, however, rentals are hard to come by and rents are very high.  Therefore, with interest rates still low (around 4.7%), house payments can often be equal or lower than rent.  Therefore, that demographic is actively looking for housing.  But that is the single family suburban housing market.  What about rural land and homesteads?

My experience over the past two years has been that of increasing demand as well, with short supply.  More and more folks are looking to get out of the cities and into a more rural life.  Not that they are looking to live off-the-grid, or on a 200 acre spread, but rather a smaller mini-farm that is convenient to a sizable town, but quiet and without the restrictions of a home owners subdivision.  I’m seeing folks from all parts of the country coming to western North Carolina searching for a getaway place.  It may be for permanent relocation, or a vacation set up, or very often looking to establish a family legacy property with two or three homes for adult children.  That is, they’re looking for a family compound where everyone can come to if the world should go to pieces.

With war in Europe threatening to escalate; big government continuing to put more and more restrictions and mandates on us regarding our ability to move from place to place; banking laws getting more and more intrusive; censoring of any speech that goes against the bureaucratic company line; supply chain disruptions, etc., its no wonder people are looking to “get out of Dodge” to a place where they can live in peace and become more self-sufficient.  That’s where Retreat Realty comes in.  We’re constantly looking for new properties to market for those interested in that way of life.  We have several on the horizon that we hope to have listed in a few weeks, so stay tuned as they are announced.  If the dollar and the stock market tank, wouldn’t it be smart to have some of your portfolio in a hard asset such as real estate?  Not to mention an asset that you can actually enjoy and use rather than a stock certificate?