5 Fun Real Estate Facts for Your Day

alaska highway

If you work in real estate long enough, you are going to see a lot of things.  Sometimes they’re quirky and funny, and sometimes things just get downright weird. But even the weird stuff can make for good stories--and here we have a set of five quick (and fun!) real estate stories for you to enjoy.

Alaska: The Last Frontier

In March 1867, the United States signed a treaty to purchase Alaska from Russia for the low, low price of $7.2 million (which is in the ballpark of $185 million today). This translates to about two cents per acre (which gives you an idea of just how massive Alaska really is).

At the time, critics of the deal referred to it as “Seward’s Folly” or “Seward’s Icebox.” Seward, however, got the last laugh--the Klondike Gold Strike in 1896 brought a rapid influx of people to the territory, looking to strike gold and get rich quick. 

Real Mountains of Beverly Hills

...and not “The Mountain” from Game of Thrones. The Mountain is a 157-acre parcel of undeveloped land located in Beverly Hills overlooking the Los Angeles basin. It’s thought to be one of the most valuable pieces of land in the area, and was listed for sale in 2019 at $1 billion. With no buyers, the price was later slashed to $650 million. Ultimately the property sold at a foreclosure auction--for just $100,000.

Don’t Bet on Finding a Vintage Home in Japan

...because they probably don’t exist. Most Japanese homes depreciate in value (the opposite of what we see in the United States) and lose most of their value within 20 to 30 years. When someone moves out or dies, the house is demolished and a new one is built in its place. According to The Guardian, “[t]his scrap-and-build approach is a quirk of the Japanese housing market that can be explained variously by low-quality construction to quickly meet demand after the second world war, repeated building code revisions to improve earthquake resilience and a cycle of poor maintenance due to the lack of any incentive to make homes marketable for resale.”

How Good Are Your Bargaining Skills?

Could you buy a house with a paper clip? In 2005, Canadian blogger Kyle MacDonald apparently did exactly that. One Red Paperclip is the blog where MacDonald chronicled his journey, trading items over the course of a year--14 trades later, he managed to trade his way into a house in Saskatchewan. MacDonald has since written a book about his adventures and is a professional public speaker. You can find more information about his current projects here.

Out of This World Deals

If you’re having trouble finding the right home on this planet, why not extend your search? If you really want to get away from it all, you can now purchase an acre of land on the moon or on Mars for as little as $30. (If you want more acreage, the price goes up, but it’s still reasonable--10 acres will set you back $150, and you get a framed copy of your deed.) Pluto is also available for sale in its entirety--so far, no takers.

If you still want to find a new home on planet Earth (and in the Triangle area specifically), Triangle Real Estate Group is here to help. Our rock star agents are ready to help you find exactly what you’re looking for. Give us a call at 919-917-7100 or visit our website to see available listings!


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