There are lots of reasons I like real estate. Anyone who has met me when showing a home can tell you that I really do enjoy the process of viewing homes and imagining what they could be and what they have been.
I love trying to figure out what the architect or builder was going for. What were they thinking? Some of the best fun is in looking at much older homes and seeing how it evolved and was changed over the years. You can track how society values change with what was popular when different homes were built. For instance, the change in trend from having the kitchen be a place that is hidden away to a focal point of the family and having over guests. Sort of a rebirth of the hearth. I love that stuff.
But there is another level of real estate that I am particularly passionate about. Personal property rights are a cornerstone of democracy and a free society. Being able to buy land and tell the government to go screw themselves when they want to do something on it is practically built into the constitution. Our private property rights were born from American colonists being forced to open their doors to the British. If soldiers needed a place to sleep or food to eat, you had no rights other than simply opening your door and letting them have whatever they wanted.
So, the idea of private property rights were enshrined in our Bill Of Rights. The third amendment states.
“No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.”.
The principles were so important, that even the fourth amendment makes further mention of private property rights,
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures , shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue , but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
That is a big deal. It should remind all of us just how important it was to the founding fathers to preserve our freedoms when it came to our property.
A whole lot has happened since the days those words were written. The government, as most governments do, work constantly to enlarge their reach and power over us – at the expense of the rights set down when our country was born.
Whenever I get the chance, I try to expose these efforts. The use of “Eminent Domain” is the most well known example. We live in a time when the idea of eminent domain is used by government, even if the only public good is that the city can get more taxes by taking away your property and giving it to someone else who will do something else with it! I despise this trend. I wrote on eminent domain on my business website last year. If you want to check out what I said, you can look at it here.
The point I am trying to make tho is just what draws me to this business. Some of these bigger issues are exactly what makes the area of real estate so attractive to me. I suspect that most people do not consider this sort of thing when they are looking for their first home. But perhaps more of us should realize that we are exercising a critical right when we purchase property.