Newton's In Search Of The Perfect Investment. Technology Investor.
8:30 AM Friday, March 11, 2005: I
visited two big real estate developments in the Coachella Valley yesterday. What
was most fascinating to me was the laser-like precision of their marketing.
One was a very upscale RV park, targeting RVs at 35 feet and longer. You get a
parking space for your million dollar plus "bus" -- what they call very
large RVs -- and a thousand square foot house with living room, kitchen, office,
bathroom and garage. All for around $300,000. The second development targeted
55 year old+ people who want handsome houses (up to $850,000), a 30,000 square
foot clubhouse with every pleasure known to mankind and closeness to a hospital.
(The hospital is key.)
That evening we
enjoyed dinner in the private dining room of a clubhouse of another, even more
gorgeous development, perhaps the Valley's premier spot with residents reading
like America's Whos Who. This time you buy the land and build your own house.
Some of the housing sites cost $3 million, and the houses several million more.
The golf courses, the views and the fees are spectacular.
The sales people
tell me properties in this Valley are selling at a speed that's mindboggling,
many off the paper plans, pre-construction. Prices continue to skyrocket. It's
a bubble, clearly. But here it's continuing. I guess the motto is "give
the world a gorgeous product in a warm clime and the buyers will come -- in
droves and in $1.4 million buses. (I was in one yesterday. My jaw is still on
Here's the valley. One of the towns not shown is called Indian Wells. It's next
to La Quinta, It's where they're presently playing the Pacific Life Open Tennis
This is center court at Indian Wells. Andy Roddick and Maria Sharapova have
been practicing on courts next to me. I'm in heaven. It's called aged geriatric
(that's me) star-fucking. Crass, but appropriate.
It touched 93 degrees yesterday, dropping down to 60 at night. There isn't a
cloud in the sky. There hasn't been one since we arrived last Saturday. I hear
it's horrible back east.
dumb blonde joke
A redhead goes into the doctor's office and says her body hurts wherever
she touches it. "That's strange," says the doctor. "Show me."
She takes her finger and pushes her elbow and screams in agony. She pushes her
knee and screams; then she pushes her ankle and screams. Everywhere she touches
makes her scream.
The doctor then asks, "You're not really a redhead, are you?"
"No," she says, "I'm actually a blonde."
"I thought so," the doctor says. "Your finger is broken."
This column is about my personal search for the perfect investment. I don't
give investment advice. For that you have to be registered with regulatory authorities,
which I am not. I am a reporter and an investor. I make my daily column -- Monday
through Friday -- freely available for three reasons: Writing is good for sorting
things out in my brain. Second, the column is research for a book I'm writing
called "In Search of the Perfect Investment." Third, I encourage
my readers to send me their ideas, concerns and experiences. That way we can
all learn together. My email address is .
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