Bet On Memphis

While home prices will likely fall in the market majority this year, Memphis poised to see a sharp increase in price gains.

With a median home price of $280,000, forecasts a 7.5 percent gain by September 2012.

“You can get a very nice house for $138,000,” John Gnuschke, director of the Sparks Bureau of Business and Economic Research at the University of Memphis, told

Unemployment in the region dropped a full percentage point to 9.4 percent in 2010.

“We have added jobs lately and we hope to add a lot more in 2011,” Gnushche said.

Also helping our case are the dwindling foreclosure filings, which dropped from 31 to 22 percent last year. With fewer homes going into inventory and a more proportionate ration of supply and demand, gradual recovery for home prices are forecasted over the next two years.


The Wall Street Journal has a nice profile and interview with B.B. King in Tuesday’s edition of the paper.

To go along with that, here’s a YouTube clip of an interview where B.B. tells the famous story of how he came to name his guitar “Lucille.”

One Auctioneer’s Superstitions

Bill Caller, Crye-Leike Commercial’s first principal auctioneer, is holding his first auction on St. Patrick’s Day, March 17 at 10 a.m.

But it’s not the luck of the Irish Caller is banking on. In his experience in the industry, Thursdays are the best days for the buyer’s turnout.

“Mondays everybody’s just coming back and they’re swamped, Friday’s everybody’s got their mind on the weekend, going out of town, doing personal things,” Caller said. “Thursdays just always seem to be a day where people are willing to get out and to come to an auction. Thursdays have always worked for me in the past, I’m just really going with my gut.”

Meanwhile, multi-family auction sales are often set for Saturdays. Because usually set auction days 45-60 days prior to the official date, you can’t predict the weather.

“Getting them to the auction is half the battle,” Caller said. “You want to make it as convenient and accessibly as possible and you don’t want to do anything to hinder attendance.”

Jeff Morris of Morris Auction Group LLC recently held its highly-publicized Memphis Motorsports Park auction on a Tuesday.

“Tuesday’s not a bad day – sometime during the week where people are focused and at work,” Caller said.

To learn more about Caller’s first auction sale, check out Tuesday’s edition of The Daily News.

Michael Oher: “I Beat the Odds”

Michael Oher’s rags to riches story has been told the Hollywood way. Now it will be told his way, with the publication this month of a book he wrote with a sports journalist called “I Beat the Odds.”

From the Huffington Post:

Oher writes, “I wrote ‘I Beat the Odds’ for two main reasons. One is that I get asked a lot what I thought about the book and the movie ‘The Blind Side’ and I wanted a chance to talk about some of the questions people have about how I was portrayed in the movie and about my life before I came to live with the Tuohys. Also, so many people seemed so touched by my story that I wanted to bring attention to what kids in the foster care system are dealing with so that people could have a better understanding of just how big and how widespread the need for loving, stable families really is.”

“I Beat the Odds” will be in stores February 8. Oher will be at Davis-Kidd to sign copies of the book Feb. 16.

Book excerpts:

“Memphis has some beautiful public schools. East High School looks like some kind of a palace. It’s really incredible.”

Oher mentions reading an interview and cites a comment from it by Robert Lipscomb, the city of Memphis director of the Division of Housing and Community Development. Apparently, the interview touched on Lipscomb’s motivation behind eliminating public housing in Memphis, which was thought to “reduce crime.”

“It was a nice thought, but all it managed to do was spread crime to new areas,” Oher writes.

Blockbuster’s long and re-winding road

This definitely qualifies as a Homer Simpson, head-slapping, growling Marge, Doh! moment.

Someone who works for the local Blockbuster franchise group told me Blockbuster and Netflix were in quiet talks a few years ago about joining forces.

Knowing what we know now – as I reported this week, that things are so bad the local franchise group is closing its remaining Blockbuster stores in Memphis – it’s not hard to imagine what the Simpson patriarch would exclaim.

Doh, indeed.