Rebuilding Lincoln’s American dream

Real estate column
By: Gene Thorpe Special to Inside Lincoln
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December 2011 is an historic time in the Northern California housing market. Here in Lincoln, we have such a wonderful variety of housing options. From beautiful country properties at Camp Far West and the Mt Pleasant area to our classic downtown, out to Lincoln Hills, Twelve Bridges, Catta Verdera, Lincoln Crossing, Fosket Ranch, Teal Hollow, and it goes on and on. Yes folks, we do live in a great town. The Highway 65 bypass will soon be in and new restaurants, businesses and stores are moving in. Thunder Valley concerts are great, making Lincoln an even more attractive destination. This year’s tanker fire really made us think about how much we love our little community and how we came together in a time of crises. It kinda makes you proud! Yes, I know the economy is down and things have been tough, but I believe we have been making it better by just carrying on. Many of our community leaders feel that we are at a turning point. There are good signs of life in our city’s business community, and the more we support our local businesses, the better off we will be as a town. I encourage you, this Christmas season, to get out and get to know some of your local professionals and consciously try to do business in Lincoln. This is a time for reflection and enjoying the holidays. Americans have always shown resiliency and courage under pressure. Researchers are concluding that each person has an innate capacity for resiliency, “a self-righting tendency” that operates best when resiliency-building conditions are in their lives. These are called goals and I know that we as a community should set some and make 2012 an even better year. The fact is that with the low cost of housing and the incredibly low interest rates, it’s cheaper to buy than rent. Most of the foreclosures and short sale homes have turned over and have already been re-sold in Lincoln. This means many of the first foreclosure and short sale participants are now coming back in to the purchasing market. Banks seem to be working more with sellers on short sales. Now there are new loans coming out to reward the upside-down folks who have been making their payments that feature lower interest rates. That will put more spendable income back in to the market. This means we, as a town, could be far down the road toward economic recovery. For all of this, we are thankful. We have a thriving city with an ever-expanding business community. With even more entrepreneurs coming in and taking advantage of the low commercial real estate rent rates and prices, we won’t really have to leave town to shop as much. In other words, we are getting more consumer options all the time. As this happens, there will be more jobs. Many folks I know have gone back to the basics with a good dose of old-fashioned work ethic. Those who have are starting to do better already. Don’t lose your patience. This community is like our house and we need to take care of it. This Christmas, when you purchase gifts, try to give a service such as haircutting, restaurant gift certificates, local crafts, homemade goods or whatever, and do it locally. When you are in the store, please look at the labels and try to buy American products if you can. It makes a difference. It’s our city and our choice. Have a super holiday and look forward to a prosperous New Year! Gene Thorpe is a former California Association of Realtors director, the 2010 past president of the Placer County Association of Realtors, and broker/manager of Century 21 Select Lincoln. You may reach him at gthorpe@c21