I enjoy reading Bob Daviau’s columns and I often agree with his points. For example, his proposal that the content of political ads should be checked and certified “reasonably factual” (or not) is an excellent idea. As a country, we desperately  need to get away form the epidemic of fake news, much of it spread on social media platforms.

I also empathize with the curse of the calendar. You write a story, or make a comment that is spot on at the time, only to have the situation change dramatically by the time your piece is published. But, Bob’s “Market Report”  has consistently understated the tremendous gains that have occurred since President Trump took office. In mid January 2017, the Dow stood at 19,800. On June 7, 2019, the Dow closed at just under 26,000, up more than 30% in two and a half years. That is an annualized return of something like 12%! What makes these gains all the more impressive is they occurred during a period of low inflation.

I supported Trump with reservation and hoped he would do three things: 1) Protect my Second Amendment rights, 2) appoint conservative justices to the Supreme Court and 3) fix the immigration mess.  As of this writing, Trump has exceeded my expectations on one and two. And now, it looks like Mexico will be “building the wall” after all!

As to global warming, when exactly will that start? It as 34 degrees yesterday morning and the waters of Rangeley Lake have yet to break 50 degrees!

Randall Poulton

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To The Editor:

Mr. Daviau’s article regarding rental properties in Rangeley is not only full of inaccuracies, it is insulting to renters such as my wife and myself.   Over the past 15 plus years, we have used the services of the Morton and Furbish Agency to arrange scores of short term rentals. On the few occasions when there were any problems with the property, they were rectified immediately. We, in turn, have always been respectful to the neighbors as well as the owners, leaving the property as we found it.  The only noise and/or inconsiderate behavior we experienced was usually from abutting owners with a house full of their own teenagers.   Our positive experiences with Morton & Furbish led us to purchase two properties through them.  We wound up donating the first one, a 15 acre parcel on Rangeley Lake, to the Rangeley Lakes Heritage Trust, and purchased another lakefront lot.  None of this would have occurred had we not been able to enjoy the region in all seasons via the availability of house rentals. We have also recommended such rentals to many others, introducing them to the Rangeley area. No doubt there are the occasional renters who, like slob hunters, bring discredit to themselves and their activity, but they are well in the minority.   We have met some terrific people in Rangeley, many of them short term renters!

Daviau’s inaccuracies lie in his “economic analysis!”    I have been a real estate broker and developer/builder for 45 years, having completed over 30 condo projects.  In many primary home associations, the owner-occupants prefer to prohibit or curtail short term rentals; however, the exact opposite is true for second and third homes. These homes are often used for a very small percentage of the year by their owners, who often list them for rentals to offset the formidable cost of ownership. In fact, many owners would be unable to purchase vacation properties without the ability to gain some income via rentals.  These are not extremely wealthy people trying to make a big score at the expense of the locals, and their contribution to the local economy infinitely outweighs the occasional disturbance from inconsiderate renters.   Many of Rangeley’s businesses- especially restaurants and bars- would not survive without home renters and transients.  Fact: people on vacation unfailingly will spend more in restaurants and bars, and on boat rentals, fishing guides, and local shop purchases than will year round residents.  Isn’t that the purpose of a vacation?

And let’s not forget the huge amount of real estate tax dollars received by the Town of Rangeley and surrounding townships from assessment on vacation homes.   In fact, these tax receipts far

exceed those from year round residents!   All in all, the rentals programs are a huge benefit to the region, and should be protected and supported at all costs!

Keevin Geller

Sharon, MA

 


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