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VOL. 36 | NO. 36 | Friday, September 07, 2012

Wouldn’t ‘Anchor Up!’ be a better metaphor for Vanderbilt?

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In the recent past, the success of Nashville’s real estate market has mirrored the success of Vanderbilt football. In 2007, while real estate markets were crashing all over the country, Vanderbilt won a respectable three of its first four games, and the local market held its own. The team faded over the last eight games, and the market followed suit as it showed losses for the first time in 13 years.

Then, in the fall of 2008, Vanderbilt won its first five games, and the real estate market stabilized. Unfortunately, the team lost six of its next seven, and the real estate market crumbled right along.

For those following this trend, the hiring of James Franklin was of great significance. The market had enjoyed a good spring practice, and the schedule looked favorable with interest rates low and home prices even lower.

The real estate coaches were cautiously optimistic while upbeat and inspirational. Coach Franklin was not cautious about anything. He was the most optimistic coach in the 50 years I have followed the program, so optimistic that he seemed to have conducted an inaccurate appraisal of his program. Everyone knows overpricing a property kills any prospect of a successful transaction.

Yet Franklin delivered and brought the Commodores and the real estate market back as Vanderbilt attended its first bowl game since 2008. The real estate market, meanwhile, posted its first gain since 2007.

Therefore, it was with consternation and confusion that Realtors noted the new slogan that the Frankinites had instituted: “Anchor Down.”

To those unaware of the intricacies of nautical travel, “anchor down” means stop. A ship may drop anchor for a number of reasons, perhaps to await passage of a tempest and or allow the crew to rest.

Realtors want more forward movement from VU football and the market.

After attending the game against South Carolina, it became apparent to those in attendance that “Anchor Down,” those two words spoken in that order, means to attack the opponent with a positive outcome anticipated.

The battle cry should be heralded with a growling of sorts that begins rather calmly reaching a crescendo immediately prior to the screaming “Anchor Down!”

The effect on the crowd and players was sheer fanaticism – its point, of course – raising electricity in the stadium to a level that would have impressed Ben Franklin.

In closing this section, it is indeed time for all to anchor down in all aspects of life, as the team fared well, could have won the game and the curtain is raised upon what should be a spectacular season.

Sales of the Week

With Vanderbilt’s football team providing its fans with confidence that happier days are here again, or for the first time with some permanence, the residential market in the area is flourishing with the price per square foot on this week’s sales joining the team in beating the odds.

The first sale is 3205 Marlborough Avenue – just off Love Circle and a 10-minute walk to Dudley Field – and weighs in with a sale price of $255.84 per square foot.

That’s a number that would have made Bear Bryant proud.

The husband-wife team of Michelle and Jon Sheridan kicked off this property and had it closed before the fourth quarter, selling the house in 20 days.

It was a tremendous gamble breaking the huddle with such a high price per square foot, but Danielle Hasley of Village Real Estate Services handed off the buyers who cleanly fielded the property and took it to the bank.

Taking a cue from the Vanderbilt’s recently upgraded athletic facility, this house was renovated with two master suites, a gourmet kitchen, granite, stainless steel appliances and a huge deck. The 1,669-square-foot residence sold for $427,000.

The buyers had paid $417,000 in 2008, so they earned the right to go bowling.

Kicking off to start the second half is 1906 Natchez Trace selling just a few blocks away for $239.11 per square foot. The 1,547-square-foot home sold for $369,900 in three days with no timeouts.

Laron Pendergrass, the sure-handed, agile Realtor from Pilkerton Realtors, coached the sellers, while Starling Davis, who is more cunning as Bill Belichick, listed the house and instituted a solid game plan.

The house has three bedrooms, two baths, an updated kitchen and enough upgrades to receive a scholarship.

Richard Courtney is a real estate broker with French, Christianson, Patterson, and Associates and the co-author of Come Together: The business Wisdom of the Beatles. He can be reached at Richard@richardcourtney.com.