According to the New York Times, last month was the hottest month ever. The climate is a-changin’. Extrapolating from the last couple decades of data, they produced a chart projecting the likely temperature changes in the 21st century; basically, New York City is going to become Florida, and Florida is going to become a combination of Atlantis and Hell. But hey, as the saying goes – one man’s large-scale population displacement and humanitarian crisis is another man’s real estate investment opportunity, AMIRITE?
So if the temperate coastal paradise of Long Island (home of some of the most expensive homes in the country) is about to become a) 30% smaller because of rising ocean levels and b) scorching hot and malarial, where’s the next Long Island going to be? Where can you buy property cheap today so that your grandchildren will be wealthy, dissolute trust fund billionaire laughingstocks? According to my quasi-scientific estimates, it should be right around … here.
That’s right, folks! Canada! More specifically: the presently-borderline-Arctic-but-soon-to-be-temperate Atlantic island of Newfoundland. The free healthcare alone should convince you; by 2050, we Americans are going to be paying $30K a month with a $1 million deductible for health insurance. (And they’re going to deny every single claim.) I mean, what’s not to like about Canada? There’s plenty of room, the people are nice, the government is unbelievably civil and level-headed; the only downside, as of today, is the brutal winter weather. That won’t be a problem for much longer, though. But let’s keep our eyes on the prize here: generational wealth. Let’s look at some properties. (Note: all prices have been converted to USD from CAD.)
This six bedroom, 3700 square foot mansion dates to 1889, which by Newfoundland standards is still pretty young, considering the island was first colonized around the year 900, by vikings. If it was in the United States, we’d be putting historical plaques all over the place and threatening litigation if you so much as touched up the wainscoting, but here in Newfoundland they’re like, “yeah, let’s just slap some vinyl siding on it.” Not only do you get the mansion, but you get two freestanding carriage house-type structures, plus 200 feet of waterfront; the house is on a small bay on the very eastern side of the island, so we’re talking about very nice swimming, boating and beaches. How many millions does this place cost, you ask? Ha! Not even. It’s $310K. Newfoundland is lightly developed so far, so everything’s pretty astonishingly cheap. That’s right, you could get a historic mansion in Newfoundland that, unless mankind invents some kind of machine that eats greenhouse gases (full disclosure: still a remote possibility), will be worth somewhere in the neighborhood of $30 – 300 million by century’s end.
40 A Harris Street
This Elizabeth J cottage is so close to the water you can literally throw a rock into the ocean from the deck, or maybe your significant other’s phone after you see they’ve been texting with their ex again. It’s nicely elevated, though, so even after the sea levels rise a foot or two, you’ll still be securely on high ground. This is the definition of “prime waterfront property” – you could set out in a boat from the front of your cottage and the first thing you’ll hit is Europe.
This two bedroom luxury cottage is available now for a hair over $270K, which is basically the equivalent of Apple stock selling in 1982 for three dollars a share. Drop this very reasonable sum now and your grandchildren will be in Us Weekly alongside the Zuckerberg and Kanye grandchildren.
What is this?! Is this house able to detach from the ground and hover over the countryside? What’s that little black door on the bottom – is it for the convenience of the trolls that live under your house? This house is like if an eccentric old Easter European guy got together with his architect and was like, “I want you to design a house that looks like my hat!”
Okay, seriously though – it’s a 3 bedrooms, 3.5 bath 3000 square foot house with ocean views that you can have, today, for $232K. Who cares if it’s shaped like an octagon? What’s wrong with an octagon-shaped house, anyway? This conversation is making me uncomfortable. Centerville-Wareham-Trinity is a quaint little village on the east coast of Newfoundland, so you’ll get a nice crisp ocean breeze off the Atlantic; future Hilton heiresses will definitely be passing out in the streets of this town once the US becomes an inferno. Bottom line: if this house hasn’t increased in value tenfold by mid-century, you can dig me up and slap me in my cold dead face.
The economy option. (Also, notice that this parcel doesn’t even have a number. It’s just “on the main road.” Canada is weird.) Here we have a 0.7 acre parcel with fantastic ocean views for $15K. No, I didn’t leave a zero out of that. For less than a price of a Kia hatchback, you could own prime waterfront property on the future’s hottest North American island. (This is sounding like a sci-fi version of a “Glengarry Glen Ross” monologue.) I mean, even if you’re not intent on making your grandchildren billionaires (understandable), you could still do nothing but drop this $15K, build nothing, secret the deed for the land away in your safe deposit box, and guarantee that future generations will marvel at your foresight and investment acumen. You could literally gloat and be smug from the grave. Which quite frankly is priceless.