Facing a Financial ‘Fork in the Road’ | Print |  E-mail
Thursday, 13 December 2012 15:36

By Phil Hunt

Special to the Times

Q: It seems like everything is failing — our gas prices are out of control, the real estate market has collapsed, our government is bankrupt, our money is devaluating… So, where do we go now?

A: It has always been my philosophy: “When you come to a fork in the road, take it.” Don’t stop, don’t back up, just take one of the forks even though you know not where it may lead.

Many times in my life, I have been at one of those “forks in the road,” and I always move on down one of them — ultimately ending up some place good.

We, as a people, felt the panic and fear on Dec. 7, 1941 and again on Sept. 9, 2001. In both cases, people were standing there feeling the pain and horror, that such heinous acts could be perpetrated upon our country. However, most of us survived and moved on.

As for our government, it is not bankrupt; it just feels like it. As long as the government has the printing presses, they will continue to print more money. We will, however, have inflation due to the devaluating of our money, but we will survive.

As bad as it may look for our real estate market, it is doing quite well right here in our own area. The buyers are out in full force and, in most cases, properties are getting multiple offers within a couple weeks of being listed. Even though many have lost their homes, the market is recovering. We are here again at the fork in the road.

If you lost your home, it is a terrible thing, but the home was lost because the buyer bought a property they could not afford or their circumstances changed. Now that they are free from that burden of too much debt, they can rent a property for a while and look for an opportunity to buy another home that they can afford.

Everyone must learn one of life’s valuable lessons: “You can not survive forever, if you spend more than you take in.” Don’t spend time and energy lamenting over things you have no control over. We don’t even have control over our spouse; we can only control our own behavior.

Regardless of which road you take, you will go on with your life and you will become prosperous — if you don’t do foolish things.

Phil Hunt is a real estate broker in Castro Valley. Fax questions to 583-5480.



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