Real Estate Values and Jobs: It doesn't take a rocket scientist, baby

Americans needs jobs and real estate values depend on it. Without production jobs in America, unenmployment will continue to increase and real estate values will continue to decline.

As a real estate agent in Grand Rapids, I get the question often, "When will real estate values go back up?" My answer, always, is: "It ain't rocket science, baby. Real estate values will begin to go back up when Americans have JOBS."  Usually, a glassy-eyed stare follows and I explain:  "You see, when you put the "for sale" sign in your front yard, and only ONE of your potential buyers has a job, do you think you will get a good offer or will that one buyer try to buy your home as inexpensively as possible?  The truth is, for real estate values to increase, the law of supply and demand says that there must be more buyers than sellers, right?  When there are less buyers than sellers, prices go down.  The problem in today's economy is that Americans' jobs have been sent overseas and American consumers have supported those companies who are outsourcing labor by purchasing products made in China, Mexico or Malaysia, for example. American production jobs that have been outsourced to cheap-labor countries have not been replaced with other jobs in America and our unemployment figures bear that out. 

Unlike other recession periods, however, this recession shows no sustained signs of recovery because the historical strength of our U.S economy -- making things and selling them here and throughout the world -- no longer exists.  We cannot build a strong economy that supports investing in homes or American companies on a foundation of cheap foreign labor. 

If Americans don't have jobs, they can't buy houses ... or cars, or clothing, or food, for that matter. Simple. Until we as consumers show manufacturers through our buying power that we are committed to ONLY buying products that put Americans to work, our economy will continue to founder. As consumers, we need to support manufacturers who are putting American workers to work and encourage our legislators to  provide incentives to both American manufacturers and foreign manufacturers to build products in America, using American workers.  We must ALL pursuade American manufacturers to promote the "Made in U.S.A" message through their advertising and packaging.

If you, like many Americans, don't believe you can can find any American-made products today, you can search for them at http://www.create-american-jobs.com.

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Charlene Collins
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Posted on Jul 27, 2010