A big factor that led the U.S. into the Great Recession was unbridled lending, and subsequent sale of questionable mortgages to investors worldwide. Loans were made with no income verification and other checks and balances were ignored as appraisals often were “made as instructed.” This opened the door for those financially incapable of supporting their purchase(s) to buy multiple properties, which were destined to fall into default save for the very few who were fortunate to sell before the collapse. Commercial properties were less impacted but still felt the pain as many inexperienced developers and “flippers” flooded the market with grandiose plans and grander purchase prices. Today, most of Harshman & Company, Inc.’s transactions are completed with “cash” and without significant debt. The buyers often put low amount of leverage on their properties post purchase with eyes forward. A glance in the rear view mirror, however, reminds us of the pain over leveraging can hide – for a time. Meanwhile, interest rates are still EXCELLENT and, just as important, lenders appear to be saying “No” to some loan requests that don’t meet their internal lending criteria. This bodes well for healthy markets going forward, and will also go a long way toward keeping us out of another lender-initiated recession.