Cincinnati Real Estate

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Kathy S. Koops GRI

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Does Nostalgia Have a Place in the Cincinnati Real Estate Mix?

filed under: For Sellers posted on October 19th, 2011

Do you remember the Skywalk in downtown Cincinnati?

The Uncle Al Show?

WCPO-TV, The Uncle Al Show (Al and Wanda Lewis)

Harvest Gold Kitchen Appliances?

Freeway Speed Limit of 55mph?

 And Shag Rugs?

Maybe you have fond memories of the “good old days” or maybe you’re too young to even know what I’m talking about- the point is things do change …and usually for the better.

No doubt we all wish for the days when you listed a house on Monday and it was “sold pending” by Tuesday afternoon.  I remember when “breathing” qualified you for a 100% mortgage and appraisers were under the gun to make “deals work”.  Those were the days when things were great in the real estate market- well not really.  Lots of us were worried about the lack of oversight on loans and how much debt consumers were taking on in order to buy a piece of the “American Dream”.  But nobody likes a spoil sport when things are going well…

But sometime memories are really better than the real thing.  I don’t know about you- I never liked trying to vacuum shag carpeting and thanks to former president Jimmy Carter’s grand plan of saving fuel our 4 hour drive to see the grandparents became a 5 1/2 to 6 hour drudge ride…and we consumed just a much fuel as before the speed reduction.  Nostalgic memories tend to forget the 14%+ interest rates in the early 1980’s that led to sellers and realtors dealing with assumable mortgages, sellers becoming the lender and all sorts of unique ways to keep inventory moving.  The difference in the market then and today’s real estate troubles -in the 1980’s housing was feeling the effect of high interest rates and inflation.  Today with lower interest rates – mortgage money has become somewhat difficult to secure and many potential buyers are just plain scared of the economic environment facing them.  Fond memories of harvest gold appliances, harvest gold formica counter tops and harvest gold shag rug are fun because we have moved on to more appealing colors and appliances.

Along with the stainless kitchen appliances, granite counter tops -today’s new reality in real estate is price it right, get a contract, fix what needs to be fixed and breathe a sigh of relief at the closing.  This too shall pass as the supply of properties shrinks, employment opportunities start to improve and people take advantage of the historically low mortgage rates.  When will this happen- my best guess is 1-3 years -but I’m hope I’m wrong.  In the meantime fond memories of former real estate markets may be good only if you remember that the past is….well the past.  Hopefully harvest gold will not be the “in color” anytime soon.

What are some of your fondest memories of Cincinnati?  Feel free to share.

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