Since the start of the downturn, I - like millions of others - have been looking for a home for my investments.
I got out of the market early, and have been in cash; safe(ish), but with pitiful yields.
Today, I came across a vehicle that, at first glance, looks to be an incredible attractive opportunity. I was tempted, but having been bitten a couple of times before,I read the small print.
And all that glisters in not gold. As the man said: "If it looks too good to be true, it probably is." So, before you are tempted, let me offer a word of advice.
Do not go into WH Smith and buy an acre on the moon.
You'll find the offer on the carousel that holds the magazine gift subscriptions and the test-track-drive-in-a-Porsche vouchers. It's a small cardboard pouch containing a deed, a constitution, a property map and mineral rights.
Six pieces of card for £30.
Do the math: An acre of prime real estate for less than a copy of Kim Kadasian's autobiography and the 5 CD set "101 Housework Hits". It's tempting - but as Phil and Kirstie would say, the first rule of property is "location, location, location". And yet here, you have no choice. You get what you are given.
That's OK if you open the package and find The Sea of Tranquility: just landed the lunar equivalent of Aspen and Lake Geneva rolled into one. Crater Posidonius is highly desirable too, with great views over Dorsa Smirnov and rumours of natural spings, which is sure to increase value.
But Frau Mauro, Bonpland and Parry? Oh puh-leease.Who wants to live in the west country? It's not at all developed, the transport links are dreadful, and the schools don't feature anywhere on the league tables.
But at least you'll be visible. Pity the poor investor who gets an acre on the dark side. Mare Orientale Mares Australe. A cultural desert.
Like the Purley Way, but without IKEA.
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