2011 State of the Market Address

2011 State of the Market Address

Matt Mason Photography

Dear Friends, Clients and Future Clients, Lake Geneva Lovers, and Honored Guests who have arrived solely by the grace of the Google Algorithms,

At first glance, there appears to be no constitutional precedent that would mandate that I give this speech to you today. There is no decree, and no higher authority that has directly dictated that I stand here, sporting my finest jeans and the cleanest collared shirt I could find, for no other purpose than to update you on the status of the vacation home market that we all hold dear. No, my friends, this is not a speech that I have been squarely forced to give. At least that’s what you might initially believe. In fact, while the Declaration of Independence may be far from your mind this morning, it is that very declaration that has provided me with my mandate. I stand here today, humbled to be your servant-savant, and it is my honor to proclaim to you that the state of our market is strong. (This is where I pause to absorb the thunderous applause.)

The Declaration of Independence, a document signed by 56 men who were later targeted by the British for their treasonous actions (no matter what Snopes may say), sought to promise men three core, tangible beliefs. Those being, in no particular order: life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. It’s that very pursuit that has led men, women, and children to the shores of Geneva Lake for centuries, and it’s that pursuit that will keep our market strong both during good times and bad. The year that has passed was not uniformly benevolent, as many segments of our market suffered through a contagious bought of real estate funk that may or may not have originated in Michigan. In spite of the pockets of resistance, the Lake Geneva market pushed forward, and claimed 2010 as a year of prosperity and virility, even in the face of long odds.

Those long odds include staggering unemployment figures and a newly minted attitude that considers real estate an evil usurper of wealth, rather than the wealth creating vehicle that we have long known it to be. The market here has struggled at times, particularly during the early spring of 2010. There were foreclosures, but they did not represent a plague. When Lake Lawn Lodge was shuttered, and the Hilmoor Golf Course remained so, there were obvious moments that tested our mettle and caused some to question the ability of our market to absorb the job losses and visual blight that those defunct developments pose. These worries proved to be unfounded, as the Lake Geneva vacation home market rode a wave of activity largely pushed forward by the strength of a rising stock market.

But even as we look back with a nascent indifference at the past three years, I will not – no – we must not take our eye off the prize. I will not rest until every individual and family of means who has ever dreamed of sitting on a white pier surrounded by the glistening, pure waters of Geneva Lake captures that dream and basks in the lifestyle accomplishment that such a purchase delivers. Value exists in this market, but only for those who are steadfast in their search, and those who aim high and shoot straight.

One could sit in isolation and ponder this great nation of ours from coast to coast, awash in disbelief at the myriad vacation home options that are available to those who can afford to spend their weekends and their holidays in a different state of mind. From the frigid mountains, to the dust covered prairies, to the oceans white with sodium induced foam, the plethora of options that exist are truly mind numbing. Other peoples might be lost in this sea of confusing options, but not us. My friends and fellow Americans, for those willing to engage in analytical and emotional thought, there is no better vacation home option than that option that exists a mere 90 miles from the Chicago city center. A vacation home option so tantalizing close, yet a vacation home experience so enticingly unique.

The challenge facing us today is to identify value, and recognize the life shaping, future altering option that rests gently at our 53147 loving feet. If we take that first step, a step made no less bold by the obvious benefit it affords, our children and their children alike will one day thank us for our financial sacrifice. If we do this, our future will shine with the warm light of a cheerfully lit screened porch, and our evenings filled with the sound of rolling waves, not just for this summer and the following year, but for decades and generations beyond.

Thank you, and may God continue to bless Lake Geneva. See you at the lake.

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