Listing Courtesy of JACK LINGO REHOBOTH
This one was news to me. The Wall Street Journal had it buried in a ‘spread sheet’ section of their online Real Estate section: “Why It’s Harder to Sell Your Home in an Election Year.” If you are like me—never having had an inkling that Bethany Beach homes for sale have rough sledding in an election year (like this one)—you’d have to read the details.
“The uncertainty of a looming election can cause a dip in home sales,” it detailed, “especially if the race is close.” The article was illustrated by a cartoon showing a neighborhood street whose every lawn was graced by alternate “vote!” signs and homes for sale signs. The underlying thesis was that in close elections, house hunters are reluctant to buy if an uncertain political future makes them unsure about their own financial fortunes.
This might sound reasonable from a logic perspective, but as you read further into the factual basis for the idea, you’re likely to start losing confidence.
The whole basis for the article is a political science paper published in 2014.
In the British Journal of Political Science.
Based on housing sales back in 1999-2006.
In 73 elections.
Most of us would begin to worry about why this couldn’t make the grade in a United States journal of political science, since it centered on U.S. elections. Perhaps a research quality issue? Then there’s the fact that those dates are 10-17 years old. There is also the puzzling notion that there have been 73 elections in the past couple of decades…but it turns out that they are dealing with gubernatorial elections from a select number of states. Perhaps our average house hunter checking out homes for sale in Bethany Beach actually does hang their financial fortunes on who the next Governor is going to be…but I wouldn’t bet on it.
As for Presidential elections, the article mentions a separate analysis that “uncovered a similar effect.” But, on closer reading, not really. This analysis was by someone who studied California sales only, and determined that in the Golden State, home prices rose by an average of about 1% less during election years. But they still rose by 4.5% in those years. If that means they were “harder to sell,” you’d have to explain why…
This is only a guess, but if you were trying to determine if it will be easier or harder to find buyers for Bethany Beach homes for sale in Election Year 2016, it seems more logical to look for factors that directly affect the buyers—such as today’s historically low mortgage interest rates. When buyers do the arithmetic showing how low monthly payments have become, I’m willing to bet that overshadows errant thoughts about who the next Governor is going to be.
If you are readying to buy or sell a Bethany Beach home, you probably don’t really need to worry about who will occupy the Statehouse as much as who will be helping you navigate the market. I hope you’ll elect me for the job! Call/Text me Russell Stucki at (302) 228-7871, email me at email@example.com, visit more listings at www.beachrealestatemarket.com.
First of all, a Spoiler Alert: It’s not fair to peek down where the answers are! Now that we’re clear on that, this is a quiz that will tell you how "Decade Sensitive" you are when it comes to Sussex County home décor. It took a little browsing around to put this together, but it sure was fun.
The idea is to match the décor item with the decade it is most closely associated with. Ready? GO!
A. Popcorn Ceilings
C. Sherwood Green & Stratford Yellow
D. Stainless Steel Appliances
E. Shag Carpets
F. Sustainable Materials
G. Kitchen Islands
Now that you’ve matched the items with the decade, you’ve probably noticed that there is a lot of ambiguity here, because Sussex County home décor themes didn’t just go in and out of style at the beginnings and ends of decades. The answers are combed from a variety of sources, but here is what the consensus (sort of) agrees on:
The 50s: Answer-C. Sherwood Green and Stratford Yellow were first popularized for kitchen appliances during the postwar era. The 50s can be forgiven for these unnatural apparitions, which might have had something to do with the advent of vinyl flooring in the kitchen …
The 60s: Answer-A. Popcorn Ceilings – Thank you, The 60s, for giving us this innovation. They were popularized for conveying a "textured" look, adding insulation, and cutting down sound. We’ve been scraping them off ever since…
The 70s: Answer-E. Shag Carpets (of course!). Sometimes associated with the 60s, but unmistakably reaching peak popularity in the 70s, a "period when wall-to-wall carpeting was fairly new." Its fluffy look and feel remained popular until The 90s, when it is said to have "faded into oblivion." Hardly—it’s still causing vacuum cleaner jams in Sussex County homes with cool "vintage" décor.
The 80s: Answer-B. McMansions, aka "garage Mahal," "starter castle," and "Hummer home." They may have been around since The 70s, but the term first appeared in the Los Angeles Times in 1990. Even the wisecracking nickname couldn’t curb the irresistible advantages of the mass-produced luxury home. Unexpectedly, some of them turn out to have been quite well-built.
The 90s: Answer-G. Kitchen Islands. If you placed these in The 80s, you’ve got a good argument, because that’s the era when modern kitchen design really took off. In The 90s, though, the ‘island’ first took its place in the majority of new kitchens spacious enough to make it practical. They are still everywhere, so you’re forgiven if you put them in The 2000s or Now.
The 2000s: Answer-F. Sustainable Materials. Even defining "sustainability" can get you into an argument (it could be salvaged wood countertops; might be granite), but the Green movement that took off in The 60s began to get serious government support in the New Millennium.
NOW: Answer-D. Stainless Steel Appliances. You can’t get away from them: today’s prospective Sussex County home shopper is finding glistening stainless steel refrigerator and oven doors in kitchens all over the place. This finish may have been around for more than a decade, but is NOW available at so many price points it’s hard to think of a single décor item that is as widespread—or one that’s more likely to stay popular long into the future.
With or without the stainless steel appliances, if yours is one of the Sussex County homes that will be listing this spring, do give me a call!