It is time for us all to start living again and stop holding our breath. We have all seen the gloom and doom mongers out there talking about everything from 2012 Mayan prophecies to alignments of the stars and planets to economic warnings.
What is presently the reality? The stock market appears to be doing just fine. You can’t find a more capitalistic enterprise on the planet having to do with the status of our economy and the world’s. And it is doing swell.
So why do we allow the naysayers to creep into our consciousness? Because they are there, on the television and on the internet, making their gloomy predictions. What if we just turned off the news, read by the talking heads, and stopped listening to the internet mumbo jumbo? What if we thought for ourselves and said: “Hey, how am I doing? Am I better off right now than I was a year ago? Am I likely to be better off a year from now, than I am right now?”
If your answer to these questions is Yes, then you may want to consider thinking for yourself about what you should be doing.
From my perspective, that of an architect licensed in multiple states throughout the USA, I would like to share with you my viewpoint, if you would be so kind. Here it is:
1. INTEREST RATES are at all-time lows, at least during the last 50 years or so. They are only likely to go up; they can’t go down any further. What should you do? Take advantage of them and get your loan (if you need one) to finance your proposed new home now. Lock it in. A year from now, you could be kicking yourself, and I will point to this line item on this post of mine and I will say “I told you so.” Get ’em while they’re hot.
2. REAL ESTATE PRICES are at the lowest level you are likely to find them in your lifetime. If you have found land that you feel represents a great deal for you and your family; an opportunity to own that dream acreage that was too expensive before, but now is within reach, for gosh sakes, buy it! It can’t go any lower, as the American economy begins to resurrect. Once again, this is a business of supply and demand. As savvy real estate agents have said for decades: “God ain’t making any more of it.” Get it now, if it is within your means. Next year, or in a couple of years, you will wish that you had, when the getting was good. My wife and I just saw a wonderful residential site, perfect for a luxury house with a walkout basement for under $10,000. Amazing. There is even a little stream down the slope and beautiful forest with 80′ tall trees everywhere. Paved roads lead to the site, just where you would want a driveway, and public water is there, and a power transformer. Deals like this can’t last.
3. CONSTRUCTION PRICES are also at an abnormally low level. Let me share with you just how low. Around here (a resort area), you couldn’t get a nice home for under about $350/sf about 2 years ago. Now, you can get some deals for between $120 to $145/sf and for $200/sf a custom luxury residence. That is a huge savings! Contractors are hungry right now, fighting for their lives. But…demand has started to increase. Just last week, when I put one of my projects out for competitive bidding, at least 2 contractors in the NE Georgia region declined to participate, citing a high volume of new contracts to build new houses there. Let’s think about this. Here are quality residential builders taking on as much new work as they can at competitive prices right now. At what point do you think they are going to say to newer possible clients: “yeah, well, we’re busier now, so I can’t do it for what I used to. I’m going to have to raise my prices about another $50/sf.” This could happen and it will. Busy people charge more for what they do, because they are in demand and they can get it. Don’t lose out. Get your new house designed by an architect and under construction as soon as possible.
4. OPPORTUNITY FOR YOU TO HAVE AN ARCHITECTURALLY DESIGNED HOUSE: if you have ever thought that you could not have a custom luxury residence designed by an architect, now is the time. Architects like Rand Soellner HOME ARCHITECTS TM have decades of experience value engineering their designs so that you can actually obtain lower prices from builders on a better-designed house than with a mere “builder’s house plan.” Do yourself a huge favor and hire an architect to design your house as soon as possible, while prices are low.