Well, it’s a blog — technically. Newman’s own is the newly launched diary of a young couple – Nora Krug and Michael Newman – who are proclaimed members of the “highly discriminated against minority – renters,” and their pursuit of a home in the “post -Bush, pre-stimulus, late-bubble” Washington, DC area.
Their diary is published through Slate, an online daily owned by the Washington Post (for which the couple work).
I found their first two entries to be well written, funny, insightful and a welcome divergence from the cacophony of inside real estate banter. It’s not often we get to peak inside the consumer experience and view things through their lens.
Of particular interest to me was theback storyregarding the home they almost bought before they started blogging:
“Why move to the suburbs just to live in a smallish house with a long, unlovely walk to the train and be able to send Joe to an underwhelming school? But you’ll move before Joseph goes to high school, Denise, our gung-ho agent, assured us. But hey, Denisethe economy could get worse! In fact it almost certainly will. We may have to stay in this house till Joe goes to college.”
Nora is right. And perhaps this calls attention to the struggles consumers face trying to buy into neighborhoods and homes they can’t afford and the struggles agents face trying to assuage them with advice wrapped in a false sense of comfort. How often did buyers of the recent past hear things like “money’s cheap, you can afford to bid $50,000 over list” or “don’t worry, in two years when the ARM adjusts, you’ll be making more money.”
Nora sends a signal to her agent — who they apparently like — that what’s paramount to them is being guided by truth and realism in their quest for a home. These days, truth and realism might very well be an agent’s most prized value proposition.
Honestly, though the story is only two entries deep, I am already emotionally vested in Nora, Michael and Denise. The one person I really can relate with is 17-month old Joseph, whose need for more space is something my own six-member family is currently dealing with.
And, Joseph: Something tells me this search for a bigger home may mean Mom and Dad might give a brother or sister pretty soon!
Good luck Newmans. And Denise too.
– Davison Twitter: 1000wattmarc