Last night was “Chinese New Year” and unlike 2008, which was “a blind” year, 2009 is “a bright year”. Now before you get all excited about this Year of the Ox, let me explain what “bright” means.
Remember the movie “Wait Until Dark”? The fear and damage caused to the blind woman, when simply being touched with a scarf, by her “torturer” in her darkness? It wasn’t WHAT he was doing…it was that she couldn’t see it coming…couldn’t see who and what it was. That was 2008.
In the ancient culture of Chinese New Year, the “eyes” of the year are on February 4th. The dates that encompass each year are determined by the cycles of the moon. Some years, like 2008 have NO February 4th, and so are blind years. Others have only foresight, with February 4th in the beginning, but not at the end. Some years have only hindsight, with February 4th at the end of the year, but not at the beginning.
2009, which started last night at the first new moon of 2009, has two February 4ths, giving us “the brightest” of years, with both foresight AND hindsight. The year begins on 1/26 and ends on 2/13 this year, so 2/4 comes around twice. Bright doesn’t mean GOOD, it means if you don’t see it coming…and if you look back at the end of the year and “wish you had” done things differently…then you were choosing to bury your head in the sand, and you refused to see the handwriting on the wall.
- Thinking about flipping a house? Think again.
- Thinking low priced home sales all around you, are not going to affect your property’s value? Think again.
- Think the real estate market is going to come back to the point where all people with a real estate license can make a decent living? Think again.
- Think Obama is going to turn this market around by the 2nd Quarter? Think again.
- Think throwing good money after bad is going to save the economy? Think again.
If you bought a property in July of 2007…bite the bullet – or stay in it. Wishing the market is going to get back there soon, is not going to make it happen.
In a “bright” year, you know what to expect and you base your actions accordingly.
- Try to get a loan mod, ONLY if you can afford the resultant new payments.
- If you see no hope of your income getting back up to anywhere near where it was when you bought the house; let it go to foreclosure, wave goodbye, and reduce your expenses.
- If you are a move up buyer, understand the house you buy is also down in price, and reduce the sale price on the one you are selling accordingly.
- If you are afraid of losing your job, stop buying toys you don’t need to have, and put 3-6 months of expenses in the bank, just in case.
- Recognize that Obama as President means we have the Leadership to help us do what WE need to do…not an Il Salvatore with a magic wand.
It’s a bright year…use it wisely.