Category Archives: Puerto Vallarta Real Estate

Under All is the Land

The Preamble to the Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice of the National Association of REALTORS® begins with these words:
“Under all is the land. Upon its wise utilization and widely allocated ownership depends the survival and growth of free institutions and of our civilization.”

I’ve thought a lot about these words lately, as local and state governments take steps to mitigate the effects of climate change. My community, as do many, has a Climate Action Plan. At the national level, politicians on the right try to score political points by claiming the verdict is still out. At the local level, however, elected officials from both the right and left are ignoring the far-right bloviation and planning for the future. It’s almost comical to watch – that in places like Florida, state officials are trying to quench debate – while officials in Miami-Dade County are taking action to fight tidal flooding, saltwater intrusion, and substation power outages.

The right hand DOES know what the left hand is doing, but pretends not to see it.

That said, we have to find a positive way forward that hopefully is a two-pronged approach – take steps to protect our planet, but also safeguard communities against changes that WILL happen.

Land has always been a precious commodity. As populations shift and we have to prioritize land use for residential, industrial and farming, these conversations will get tougher. To be engaged and best help my clients and the brokers I manage, I have joined the REALTORS® Land Institute (RLI) – created for land experts and by land experts to build knowledge, relationships, and “manage our most precious resource: the land.”

Please contact me if I may be of further help. Comprised of just over 1,200 members (whereas the National Association of Realtors has over 1,000,000) RLI is a committed organization of specialists providing brokerage services for all types of land: farms, ranches, timberland, vineyards, subdivision and lot wholesaling, site selection – and more!

The Portland of Mexico

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As a former Midwesterner whose winter weather escapes tended to be places like Fort Lauderdale or Orlando, for a long time I resisted going to Mexico. I held many of the wrong myths in my head, simply because nobody in my circle of family and friends would vacation there.

That changed shortly after moving to Portland. Here, it seems like everyone goes to Mexico (or Hawaii) to escape the winter rain. Our friends James and Kevin first introduced us to Puerto Vallarta a number of years ago. And I’m happy to say that our minds have totally changed, and Mexico has earned a warm spot in our hearts.

Stereotypes about Mexico almost always center on crime. Yes, parts of Mexico struggle. And so it is in the United States. But I don’t fear exploring the Pacific Northwest simply because Camden, New Jersey has a crime epidemic. It’s just as senseless to worry about places like Puerto Vallarta because other parts of Mexico face challenges. Let facts trump fear, and not the other way around.

So what’s the appeal for me and so many people from the West Coast? I think because it’s a nice blend of foreign and familiar. While yes, there are many areas that are 100% gringo, it’s easy to immerse oneself entirely in Mexican culture within few steps off the beaten path. There is no question you are in another country when you step outside the tourist zones – often, you just have to walk a few blocks. And that’s the key – WALKING. Just like we like to do in Portland, Seattle, and Vancouver; PV is meant to be walked. I think that’s another reason for the appeal; it appeals to our sense of how a city should function and how we live back home. We can walk to all of our favorite restaurants, shops, galleries and bars. Admittedly, there is a whole other Puerto Vallarta, replete with all-inclusive resorts tucked behind gates where tourists barely venture out; but just as I won’t live in a gated community in the States, these areas don’t even register on my radar. It baffles me that people travel to another country only to never engage in it.

We now have countless friends who own property in PV. Do they have regrets? Absolutely not. Have they each learned about market idiosyncrasies and had hiccups along the way? Absolutely! They all agree – don’t take your knowledge of your home market and apply it to Mexico. Be flexible. Get trusted experts. And in that way I end with a shameless plug. As part of the RE/MAX family, you can start your search with me. We can lay the groundwork here before even getting on the plane. I belong to MLS Vallarta/Nayarit, and have trusted colleagues at the RE/MAX office locally. Interested? Let’s chat!