Valentine’s Day Reflections

Posted February 14, 2022 in Uncategorized

Scott Hogan, Clark County WA real estate agent

Love is in the air! So are rising home prices, rising interest rates, and rising rates of housing unaffordability!

Demand for housing is really strong. Those that advocate for no-growth policies, saying that Vancouver was better before that new bridge was built (in 1917) are probably not looking for a home to buy right now—nor do they have kids that are in the market. You can’t wall off Vancouver from the rest of the world—there are many examples of places where the supply of homes is too low to accommodate the number of residents, leaving housing costs so high that only the rich own homes and the everyday workers that work the jobs that we need are forced to commute from somewhere else.

I’m not advocating crazy growth that ruins our quality of life. Instead, I’m in favor of reducing red tape so that the type of growth that fits into the plans of our cities and County is streamlined so that “soft costs” of permits and fees don’t make finished homes more expensive than necessary. Land, lumber and labor are expensive enough—we don’t need paperwork or bureaucracy to make it more expensive. Let me point to an example of efficiency that works: the Joint Lobby of the County Auditor, Assessor and Treasurer. Instead of three offices, as in “next, go upstairs and down the hall,” the three offices handle everything in one spot and at one time. This cooperative effort could be used as a model in local government to reduce the number of times citizens are told “we don’t do that at this office.” We love that they came up with the idea.

Speaking of love, we absolutely adore the many Realtors and lenders that have referred us business despite the dual crises of pandemic and low inventory. We’re hopeful that, someday, we can return to unmasked closings and a house for every buyer!

In the meantime, please consider Clark County Title as your “friend in the real estate business” (nod to a jeweler that advertises on the radio). We do our best to earn loyalty and repeat business by cheerfully helping our customers reach their objectives, be it developing, building, buying, selling, or refinancing. We’re the local title company, locally owned and independent. We’re not a branch office of a mega corporation. If you have questions or concerns about this column or title insurance, please call! Clark County Title wants to be part of your real estate success!

And, finally, Happy Valentine’s Day to my wife and family, and to everyone with a loving heart. From your friends at Clark County Title,