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If you are in Santa Barbara County area, particularly in the Lompoc/Santa Maria/Buellton area, be aware that the home prices may be rather volatile over the next year or two as the next round of military base closings are discussed by the BRAC commision, presidential candidates and member of Congress.

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Jon,

This is indeed the area that we live in and I've been read several articles this week about the next round of military base closings. This is the biggest negative we can see in the near term. When Vandenberg AFB lost the Space Shuttle program, many people lost their jobs and the housing market took a dive. It took 8 - 10 years for home prices to rebound to the levels prior to that announcement. The AFB is the largest employer in the area.....

However, the local paper had an article today stating that there are only 38 SFR listings at the moment in an area that usually has 40 sales a week! It's this lack of available homes that is jacking up the price of homes. There is a lot of construction going on at the moment, but all of those homes have already been sold and new ones are not scheduled to be on the market until Sept. But if thousands of people loose their jobs next year (if VAFB closes), what will happen to home prices if everybody sells? There are not a lot of professional or highly skilled jobs in the area, so most of these people would have to move from the area or take much lower-paying jobs (I don't know how anyone can afford to live in the area these days unless they bought a house 5+ years ago).

I appreciate the advice. If you are in the market for a good rental.........

David
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