Friday, January 16, 2004

A real estate agent's dream client

Bill Gates is into property consolidation, and all the consolodating is happening around his Medina, Washington mansion. It seems that Mr. Gates (actually agents for Mr. Gates) has been on a buying binge of late gobbling up neighbours homes to the tune of 14 million dollars. His moves have extended the perimeter of his 5 acre estate with every purchase. Thus far he has bought up 11 properties, including 9 houses. This should help to eliminate the possiblity of a nosy neighbour coming over to borrow the ladder or something. As a matter of fact the chances of anyone dropping by are slim, most of the consolidated properties are being used by Microsoft employees.

On the plus side unlike some other rental properties in other parts of Seattle, by all accounts the homes are still in immaculate shape. John McIlwain is an observer of land use and property issues in Washington state. He says the last time that anyone can remember this kind of feudal activity was back in the 13 and 14 hundreds, when Baronial Lords would purchase entire tracts of land and then plant their vassals on them.

As for the remaining neighbours they say that the Gates' have been decent neighbours, but the neighbourhood has changed. One of the changes is the manner in which neighbourly disputes get solved. Perhaps in the old days a couple of beers and a pizza would smooth over ruffled feathers. But in the new era of neighbourly relations, representatives of the Gates family will meet occssionally with troubled neighbours to address concerns. So while Gates continues to build his own little Xanadu, I guess the idea of getting him to pop over and help fix those Windows XP bugs is out of the question.

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