on belhaven and the rings of a tree

I love real estate. I really do. I don’t list and sell but have worked in the industry and real estate education for more than 18 years. What do I do when I come home from work? You guessed it. I watch HGTV. Because who doesn’t love learning about houses–the places where people and their families nest and hopefully thrive?

I live in a part of Jackson called Belhaven. It was once a suburb. Now it’s a historic district. And my word, this neighborhood is exceptionally idiosyncratic. Multifamily properties sit next to single-family bungalows that cozy up to mansions where a sidewalk might stop mid-lot. It’s quirky to the extreme, and that is part and parcel of Belhaven’s charm.

I like to observe the differences of houses as I walk my dogs. And from the little of Belhaven that I’ve studied, this market is kind of like the rings of a tree. Hear me out on this one. I can explain.


Source: Arbor Day Foundation: What Tree Rings Tell Us About the Life of a Tree.

The rings of a tree tell us the tree’s age as well as the climate conditions during each year of the tree’s life. The fat, pale colored rings indicate time of plenty when the tree grows quickly. The thin, dark colored rings indicate time of drought and stress.

In Belhaven you can tell the times of plenty. Homes constructed in the 20s, 30s, and 40s proliferated. Like this one:


Or this one:


In times of stress (the 1980s?), single-family homes were converted to multifamily use, as perhaps with this one (need to research it more):


Like I said, rings of a tree.