I just read an essay from our own fabulous neighborhood college admissions counselor, Dane Copeland, entitled "Life Interruptus" that struck a chord. (If you're not on her list, she's worth the read.) To be clear, my boys have both graduated from college, but good writing is good writing so I enjoy her blogs even though that segment of my life is now blessedly over (thank goodness). Her optimistic message is worth passing along, given the sea of negativity that continues to mount day after day after day . . . . For those of us who choose to stay positive, we can feel as if we are swimming upstream. On the other hand, bad news tends to cling, and let's face it, there's no shortage of bad news.
Which makes Dane's message all the more profound. In essence; life is not linear and a life interrupted does not translate to a dead end. Let me repeat that last part because it's incredibly on point right now: "A life interrupted does not translate to a dead end!"
Let's just start with a collective sigh . . . and then take a deep breath. (I think we've earned it.)
With news that the vast majority of us are "non-essential" (that hurts) and consequently, are mandated to "Shelter in Place," it's clear that every segment of society is going to be affected by Covid-19, no matter who we are OR how we pay our bills. While fear of contracting the virus has been rampant among many (my 94-year-old mother-in-law isn't leaving her recliner), the resulting stock market losses will take much longer to resolve, and potentially, cut much deeper. In short, we all need to get back to work before industries (and people) can begin to heal, and there is a LOT of healing to do! (Were it only that simple.)
It's not hyperbole to suggest that we are in unprecedented territory, but as for how "Shelter in Place" applies to Real Estate . . . is it tough to sell a house remotely? (Yes, it is.)
I want my hour back! All week, I've felt as if I've been scrambling, because I have. I blame it on the clock; I really need and use that extra hour in the morning . . . when I wake at 7am instead of 6:00, I'm already well behind.
But it's not just the hour I'd like to retrieve, I'd like to travel back in time please. With news that the Coronavirus will likely get worse before it gets better; that trade and industry has essentially halted in much of the world; that travel has virtually been shut down; that concerts and sporting events have been cancelled; that schools and universities have been suspended; that borders are closed, and that the stock market has dropped precipitously, there's no wonder there's a fair amount of anxiety and fear among the populous. We've been spoon-fed nothing but alarming news, AND to be fair, it IS rather alarming . . . . (Heck, even toilet paper is sold out.)
It was inevitable I suppose, what with the nightly news of Coronavirus and its global spread . . . that Real Estate markets might soon feel the effect. Now that it's come ashore in the U.S., Buyers and Sellers are anxiously wondering if home values are set to finally correct??? And to this appropriate inquiry, I can only reply, "I don't know." (Wouldn't it be great if I did?)
And while it's unclear why Coronavirus has created more media concern than the flu which kills approximately 56,000 people a year and hospitalizes more than 200,000, according to the CDC, there's no doubt that Coronavirus has not only, sadly, resulted in the loss of lives, it has essentially halted travel, caused widespread panic, resulted in steep-market declines, and has put a real crimp in industries worldwide. Talk about a wet blanket!
Julie Gardner, has been writing The Perspective for 17 years and has published more than 650 essays. She is also a frequent contributor to the Sound Off column in the Real Estate section of The San Francisco Chronicle.