Sunday, April 20, 2008

The Problem With Nextville

Nextville: Amazing Places to Live the Rest of Your Life by Barbara Corcoran drops this month and I was given a copy by the publisher to review. You should also know that Barbara was kind enough to provide a quote for the advertising of my book, Florida for Boomers: A Guide to Real Estate.

Nextville is less "how-to" guide and more of a "find yourself" or "figure out whats right for you" guide. Barbara basically breaks boomers down into eight possible different lifestyle categories such as "following your passions", "living green", "losing yourself" for the soon to be ex-pat, as well as those who will choose to "stay put".

While actual "how-to buy" advice isn't as meaty as you might have hoped, there are plenty of checklists and quizzes to help guide the boomer who isn't quite sure where they want to end up or what they want to do with the next quarter century. The main strength and value of the book is that it does a great job of exploring several out of the ordinary places to think about spending your time.

Which leads me to my only bone to pick with the book. In Chapter 1, "Forget Florida" Barbara is clearly highlighting what the media is making everyone "think" is the trend, that nobody is moving to Florida anymore. The media wants everyone to believe that Florida is dead as a destination. Forget it, it fell off the map!

However, and believe me, I hear it from people everyday, folks are still researching and moving to Florida more so than any other state. There's even a book reviewed by the Wall Street Journal this weekend which chronicles the lives of folks who have moved to The Villages, located in, yup, you guessed it...Florida. (This book is called Leisureville...Leaving me wondering what's with all the "villes"?)

For good measure how about some search engine stats to back me up (Data is from Wordtracker):

Estimated Daily Searches:

Florida retirement communities: 51
Georgia retirement communities: 12
South Carolina retirement communities: 9
North Carolina retirement communities: 11
Tennessee retirement communities: 4
Virginia retirement communities: 12
Texas retirement communities: 23
Arizona retirement communities: 26
Nevada retirement communities: 4
New Mexico retirement communities: 7

You can clearly see above that interest in Florida still out paces most other states by quite a wide margin.

Lastly, and then I'm done picking on this fantastic book (I promise), is that someone needs to tell the publisher that postcard book covers are sooooo 2007 :)