The last few days I have been in a bit of a writing funk. It’s not really Writer’s Block per se, it is more like “Subject Block”. I just can’t seem to find a topic that trips my trigger. This is all a bit unusual for me as normally I have the opposite problem ”“ too much to say and not enough time to say it.
But for the life of me I just can’t seem to find a topic that lights my fire.
So I turned to my trusty friends (and I use that term loosely) on Facebook and posed this question:
Within minutes, there were several responses ”“ from the very good to the incomprehensible and everything in between. I’m going to use several of the suggestions for future posts. This response however struck my fancy immediately:
Now Craig being Craig, I suspect he wrote that just to mess with me. And five of my “friends” Liked it. Of course they did. But for whatever reason, it resonated with me (perhaps due to my lifelong love affair with the cheeseburger? Maybe it’s this stupid weight loss challenge I’m a part of now and simply that I long for a gooey double-double animal style?).
My immediate thought was write an article titled “Cheeseburgers in Paradise” (an obvious rip-off of one of my favorite musicians, Jimmy Buffet) and list some of the local places around town where one who isn’t dieting might enjoy the culinary delight that is the cheeseburger. From the obvious franchise restaurants like In-n-Out, Fatburger and Five Guys to the lesser know yet equally delightful locally based places like Flancer’s, Joe’s Farm Grill and Liberty Market.
But that seems too easy. After all, I’ve already written about Flancer’s, Joe’s Farm Grill and Liberty Market”¦ (that would be the glorious Liberty Market Guacamole Bacon Cheeseburger pictured above right).
Always up for a challenge, I bagged the local cheeseburger review idea and instead decided to go with”¦.
How Real Estate is Like a Cheeseburger
Bear with me folks as I attempt to somehow weave a reasonable analogy with real estate and cheeseburgers. Fair warning, it is entirely possible that this just won’t work. Or at least work well”¦
Let us begin with a closer look at the cheeseburger. One of its wonders is the variety one can find in that spectacular world of the cheeseburger. Think about it, you have everything from the basic double cheeseburger from the dollar menu at McDonald’s. While it does just happen to be one of my favorite things to eat, clearly the Mickey D’s double cheeseburger isn’t a gourmet offering. But it’s cheap, reliable and consistent. On the other end of the spectrum, you have the absurd FleurBurger 5000 available at the Fleur de Lys restaurant at Mandalay Bay Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. Price? $5,000. That’s just stupid. And really, considering it includes a bottle of ridiculously expensive wine it’s not fair to say the burger costs five grand. I’ve heard you can get the burger without the wine for “only” 75 bucks. And I whine about the price of Five Guys”¦
So the price range and quality of cheeseburgers varies wildly.
Just like the homes for sale in the Phoenix area. See, real estate is like cheeseburgers! Want the dollar menu house? Go for the 2 bedroom 1 bath 588 square foot home currently for sale in Surprise for $10,000. The stupidly priced Kobe beef version of a home more your style? Then you may find the 8 bedroom, 12 bath 12,860 square foot palace in Paradise Valley more your style. It’s listed for a meager $22,000,000 (taxes are only $61K/year).
What about cheeseburger availability? One can get a Jumbo Jack with Cheese from Jack-in-the-Box 24 hours a day, seven days a week. I’m pretty sure they are even open on Christmas Day. On the other hand, when that craving comes at 10:00 at night for a Flancer’s The Match with Hatch green chile & cheddar burger (it’s DELIGHTFUL, trust me) then you’re screwed ”“ Flancer’s closes at 9:00pm.
You can’t always get what you want when it comes to cheeseburgers. Ditto real estate. (Look Ma, another analogous connection! And, I managed to work in the word “analogous” ”“ that’s not a simple feat people).
The think about real estate availability is you need to know what homes in what locations in what price ranges are available. You want a $30K condo in Scottsdale? Good luck. Want a $12M palatial estate in Maricopa? Not going to happen. In real estate, you’ve got to know what is available, where and when it’s available. Just like cheeseburgers.
Taste is important, literally in the case of cheeseburger and figuratively in the case of real estate. I love In-n-Out’s double-double. For inexplicable reasons, my wife and daughter do not. I strongly suspect that I wouldn’t care for the aforementioned FleurBurger at Mandalay Bay for a couple of reasons: 1) I’d much rather drop five grand on the crap’s tables; and 2) the damn thing is stuffed with truffles, has a “special sauce” that includes truffles and is served in a “brioche truffle bun”. I have no idea what that even is, but that’s a lot of truffles, which have never really appealed to me.
You’re going to see the same variety of tastes in real estate. What appeals to one home buyer may be a complete turn off for another. In the Phoenix market for example, the subject of swimming pools comes up frequently. We’ve had buyers that would not even remotely consider looking at a home without a pool. And we’ve had the exact opposite. I’ve seen buyers compromise other things they wanted in a home — all in the name, or not, of a swimming pool. Ditto tile floors vs. wood floors from vidaspace.co.nz vs. carpet. Or countertops. People have polar opposite opinions on whether or not to get granite, or Corian or whatever countertops. The list of tastes is almost endless. Check out Home Repair Ninja’s guide to copper countertops.
Just like cheeseburgers, tastes and appeal in real estate varies significantly from person to person.
See, real estate IS just like cheeseburgers!
Price, availability, size, taste ”“ all are important factors in selecting a cheeseburger, or a home.
Thanks for the idea Craig, and thanks to all the others who contributed some great blog fodder ideas! My apologies to the vegetarians out there. And to those who came here looking for enlightenment and superior prose…. well hey, I had to do something to clear this blockage”¦
Photo Credit: Jamie Mulhern – http://www.jamiemulhern.com/blog/