Property prices getting a bit steep for you in that there London? Need to stick your flag into a chunk of affordable real estate almost certain to appreciate wildly over the course of several lifetimes? Well guess what? You’re in luck. The Lunar Registry is currently flogging off tracts of land on the Moon, complete with certificate of ownership, full mineral rights and a framed satellite photograph of your very own galactic Shangri-La for the unrepeatable knockdown price of $18.95 an acre. “What could be greater than to own your own crater?” Indeed.
Tempting though this offer may be, it might also be prudent to point out that many of us will be simultaneously drawn to the more desirable hotspots of our celestial neighbour. For example, the Sea of Vapours is looking pretty tidy: Own front door, excellent transport links, ideal for first time buyer, no onward chain. And unorthodox though it may seem at present, Mare Vaporum is likely to be a strong pull for artistic individuals priced out of the likes of Penge and Peckham Rye, and speculative buyers can therefore realistically expect a robust return on any investment made in advance of the inevitable gentrification process. In short, there’s going to be a bunfight.
Let’s presume I want to snap up a couple of acres in the Lake of Dreams, one of the most sought-after locations for adventurous romantics. Lacus Somniorum has, at best, ill-defined borders and includes the flooded impact craters Mason and Plana to the north. Which basically means I’ll be pitching for the south-facing plots like everyone else. To say nothing of future boundary disputes, riff-raff moving into the neighbourhood and the division of maintenance duties once the conversions start:
“Turns out them next door have discovered a rich seam of anorthite that runs DIRECTLY through my back yard and I’ve only just had the bloody thing moonscaped. I’ll be screwed if I’m going to help those nouveau riche shysters any more than I have already, particularly after they only painted their half of the pod doorway. In orange, for Christ’s sake! So petty! And while we’re at it, the sinkhole’s opened up again and guess who’s mucking out the sulphur deposits? Now, I’m no pedant but it’s basic human decency to keep the communal zones clear. Who else do they think does it? And as for the stink that comes out of their kitchen most nights…”
To be fair, Lacus Somniorum is probably not for me. And that goes for pretty much every must-have bolt-hole on the wretched planet – It will become the East Grinstead of the Solar System before you know it and I haven’t got all that long left. So what to do? I’m thinking Pluto’s looking like a good bet right now, as is the Heliopause and Eris if you can be arsed. Or simply wait for Foxtons to open their first gravity-free bar.