Angela Mollard: regional moaners must stop complaining about real estate
Columnist Angela Mollard is fed up with regional ramblings complaining about outsiders pushing up the price of their real estate.
No, not our “provinces”, many of which are currently overrun by mice. Rather, the sun-drenched, chateau-dotted, lavender-scented region of southern France has been made globally worthy by the bestselling memoir of author Peter Mayle and the tour of gladiatorial enthusiast Russell Crowe. in the romantic comedy A Good Year.
Well, there are issues in the Provencal paradise where celebrities buy rosé vineyards and crowd local family producers out of the market.
First it is Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie who, despite the domestic discord, still register a reasonable decline and now it is George Clooney who is fed up with boating on Lake Como and wants to diversify his interests in matters of ‘alcohol.
As a fan of a chilled Côte de Provence, I have no problem with Clooney – or Star Wars director George Lucas or the richest dude in the world, chic handbag dealer Bernard Arnault – getting started in the action of the grape even if I dare say that this will increase the price of bags of straw and grapefruit in the local markets.
But locals would be frightened by the influx of the rich and powerful.
“We are afraid that they will crush everything in their path,” said a guy from the Chamber of Agriculture.
While the whole point of growing a Coteau de Grenache is to crush it and turn it into this cheerful rose wine, I’m tired of the regional groans that complain when someone else wants a slice of their lifestyle.
Just because your great-grandparents had the foresight to buy a vineyard in the French countryside or a fibro chalet on the Australian coast, and your family have lived there for generations, doesn’t mean you are the one. owner.
I happen to follow a few local Facebook groups in our desirable coastal areas because I am a supporter of a community bulletin board.
When I visit these places I like to know where the best yoga class is, if they have a sea swimming group, and which cafe serves the best coffee.
But over the past year or so, I’ve noticed that these normally placid locals have developed the kind of anger management issues heretofore exhibited by city dwellers stuck in a traffic jam.
More than anything, they hate foreigners who raise the price of their property.
Take a recent article on selling an ocean view property in North New South Wales. Such was the venom of the multi-million dollar sale that you would have thought Peter Dutton had decided to park a fleet of battleships in the surf break or that an Adani spin-off was planned in the sugar cane fields. .
If you choose from the comments “more money than common sense” and “big city idiots raise the prices”, you realize that people are angry that their secret romance has been discovered and fear they will. are invoiced.
Unfortunately, being defensive rarely improves someone’s lot in life; what you need is preparation and agility.
Change is inevitable and while house prices have become an unsavory religion in this country – evidenced by nightly TV reports of the inflated housing market – shake their heads in discouragement or make garish comments on social media generally leads to more misery.
The point is, if you live in a place that you think is bee knees, the best thing you can do is secure your future there by assuming that others will end up seeing it the same way.
Like everyone else, I am incredulous in front of the price of real estate but rather than catastrophizing with my children, I try to make them responsible.
Most of the time I stick to three posts, one of which I would have been grateful for at their age.
First, I told them about my friend Jenny who bought her first property at 22 years old. Her parents did not charge her pension but insisted that she save the equivalent in college and her first year of work.
She bought the smallest apartment imaginable but it changed her life, allowing her to buy accommodation in England where she now lives with her family. I urge my children to do the same. Forgo the avocado toast and save hard for a deposit, I tell them. And when you buy, it probably won’t be where you want to live. Just enter the market.
Second, be decisive. There are few perfect decisions but many good ones, especially if you’ve done your homework. When I bought my dismantled little house, now demolished and rebuilt, I didn’t give a damn but my instinct was built on hours and hours of research.
Finally, have the agency in your own work and happiness. Among the comments on the sale of the property in North New South Wales was one from a housekeeper outraged that she had cleaned the house for three years and had never had a raise salary. Had she asked? From what I have heard, cleaners in regional areas are rare and therefore have rental property owners on a barrel.
At the end of the day, you can’t tie your contentment to things you can’t control. If you live in a coastal town, instead of complaining about rising house prices, why not rejoice in a pod of dolphins or the lack of traffic or the morning light over the ocean. .
And if you’re a winemaker in Provence, maybe it’s time to open a bottle and smell the lavender.
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