Currently I am at the Real Estate Convention in Las Vegas. My weekend began with a solid action packed two day session of the Cyber Pros, a real estate master mind group that has been meeting twice a year for over a decade. The CP's consist of some of the top real estate agent/brokers from around the U.S. We even have a member from Australia.
The purpose of the group is to meet and share ideas. The energy that fills the room is contagious, I leave with a head crammed full of fabulous marketing ideas that will keep me busy for the next 6 months!
So what did I get out of the 18 hours of CP streaming ideas? A lot! Let's try this one on for starters...
As we all know, America is dealing with an increase in oil prices. We feel it every time we go to the gas pump. My little Lexus used to cost me $30 to fill the tank, now I try not to look at the revolving dial as it creeps up into the $40++ range. I gulp, pull out the Conoco card and move on with life. There is not much I can do about it other than limit my driving to what is necessary.
The sad thing is, we haven't seen the worst of what may come with gasoline prices. Europeans pay far more than we ever have. The Australians I'm told pay an equivalent of $6 per gallon!
At prices like these, it is easy to understand why so many have been forced to change their lifestyles. One's resources only go so far before you begin to make choices in lifestyle. Aussie's have opted to live in urban areas, close to public transportation and everyday necessities. By doing this they can park the car, sell the 2nd car and use their resources in other ways.
As a result of living in an "efficient" location, financial institutions have programs that rate the "location" as efficient and recognize the fact the homeowner will portion their debt service differently. Loans for "efficient locations" are available, providing the homeowner with the means to purchase more in a home, since efficient locations are typically higher in cost.
If the Aussie's can do it, why not us? The trend with Denver real estate is to live in higher density, urban settings, on or near the Light Rail line. Our TOD (Transit Oriented Developments) are in their infancy stages right now. As the TOD's are being built and gasoline prices continuing to rise, maybe U.S. Lenders will develop a similar plan here.
What do you say Mortgage Companies? Are you up to the challenge? Let's get creative and think about restructuring the ratios to benefit those who are making the effort to conserve.