Important Dates In The History Of Real Estate


1840 – First account of modern, indoor plumbing.

1867 – The United States purchases Alaska for $7.2 million, the equivalent of 2 cents per acre. No doubt the sellers have remorse.

1876 – The first title insurance company in the United States opens in Philadelphia.

1882 – The town of Union Park (population 42) is founded.

1884 – The town of Union Park becomes Payson.

1900 – 75 percent of Americans live in rental housing.

1908 – Sears and Roebuck introduces do-it-yourself kits ranging from $695 to $4,115. They come with a 75-page instruction manual and the warning: “Do not take anyone’s advice as to how this building should be assembled.” In addition, the National Real Estate Exchange (later to become the National Association of Realtors) is founded.

1923 – H-O-L-L-Y-W-O-O-D Harry Chandler of the Los Angeles Times has a vision for a development and erects a sign with letters standing 50 feet tall.

1928 – The residential air conditioner was invented, making Sun Belt cities more attractive.

1930 – Will Rogers says “Buy land. They ain’t makin’ any more of the stuff.”

1934 – The Federal Government charters Fannie Mae, and 30-year mortgages become available.

1950 – The average American home is 938 square feet.

1950 – Hot Springs, N.M. changes its name to Truth or Consequences in a deal with the game show of the same name.

Late ’50s – Developers start building condominiums after importing the idea from Puerto Rico.

1958 – The Beeline Highway is paved, making the trip to a vacation home easier.

1960 – Del Webb start building Sun City outside of Phoenix.

1960 – President Eisenhower signs the Real Estate Investment Trust act (REIT) enabling investors to buy shares in commercial real estate investments.

1962 – Jed Clampett and his family move to Beverly Hills.

1964 – Gilligan, the Skipper, the millionaire and his wife, a movie star, the Professor and Mary Ann make a deserted island their comfortable home.

1970s – The energy crisis brings focus to energy efficient homes.

1974 – The National Association of Real Estate Boards becomes the National Association of Realtors.

1975 – The first computerized multiple listing service becomes active.

1978 – Proposition 13 is passed in California, calling for major cuts in property taxes.

1982 – Home mortgage interest rates are above 18 percent.

1994 – Property listings appear on the Internet.

1999 – Homeownership rises to 67 percent of the nation’s households.

2005 – The average American home is 2,434 square feet.

2009 – My son graduates from college and moves out of my domicile.

2010 – Daughter graduates from college and leaves the parental nest.

2010 – The Dodd-Frank bill is passed, which complicates real estate transactions.

2010 – The Patient Protection and Affordable Health Care Act is passed, adding taxes to certain real estate transactions.

2012 – A study shows the typical homeowner now moves every 13 years.

2013 – Payson becomes a college town?

Ray Pugel is a designated broker with Coldwell Banker Bishop Realty. Contact him at (928) 474-2216.


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