I received an email a few days ago from a client who lives in France, but is looking at Lake Norman waterfront homes for a relocation in the near future. She asked if I had seen any price decreases on homes in the vicinity of the McGuire Nuclear Plant operated in Huntersville by Duke Energy. She wondered if the disaster in Japan had caused an adverse effect on the market here. My response was, “No, no effects so far.” I also asked her to let me know if that scenario is playing out in France, home of many nuclear reactors.
It does bring up an interesting question, though, doesn’t it? I mean, how long will it be before a buyer presents an offer on a home in the shadow of the reactor on the lake, and says, “This is low because of your dangerous location.”?
However, I did a little research and discovered that there have been several studies done indicating that real estate values in areas where nuclear plants are being built actually improve, because demand is driven by an influx of new job opportunities to construct and operate the plant. Research done in areas like Three Mile Island after the event there showed some short-term downward trend, but a fairly quick rebound and continued trend upward. So while one could probably argue either side of the issue, it seems to me that if living near Three Mile Island isn’t going to negatively affect housing prices, an event in Japan probably won’t be moving the needle in the Lake Norman real estate market.
As for the low traces of Iodine 131 Duke monitors have picked up, word is one good way to counteract that isotope is to drink a glass of red wine. Now, I need to research the positive effect on wine sales in ABC stores in the vicinity of McGuire as a result of the Japanese fallout problems.
Speaking of Japan, as horrible a tragedy this situation is, once the nuclear radiation problem is under control, there will be a huge amount of rebuilding going on all over the country, which means jobs and that will help get their economy growing again.