The Census Bureau tells us there were 137,403,460 housing units in America at the end of 2017. About 63 percent of them had garages or carports, according to the U.S. Department of Energy.

That works out to 86,564,179 garages. That means either 86.5 million off-road places to store cars and junk--or else 86.5 million places to start dreaming big.

I'm thinking about this after the news that a 3-bedroom, 1.75 bath house at 10704 NE 28th Street in Bellevue, Washington is for sale.

It's a cute little home -- and its garage just happens to be the place where Amazon was launched, while Jeff and MacKenzie Bezos were renting the place back in 1994.

Garages are a particularly American part of the entrepreneurial dream, and the startup-from-a-garage story plays into the history of some of our biggest companies.

Among them: HP, Apple, and Google and many others. (Kudos to San Antonio Door, by the way, that compiled a list of some of them here, by the way.)

Add in all the attics, guest bedrooms, and basements to the mix -- to say nothing of co-working spaces and even coffee shops -- where entrepreneurs right now are hustling to create their own version of the next, big thing, and it's enough to make you get a little emotional.

They all share some version of the same goal: take an idea, launch it, build it, make money, have an impact -- maybe become an icon, lauded and chased to the point that the National Enquirer blackmails them.

Okay, maybe not the last part. But the rest of it holds true.

Meanwhile, if you're in the market for a 1,500-square foot house, remodeled in 2001 (so it probably looks nothing at all like it did when the Bezos family lived there), it's yours for the low and intrestingly specific asking price of only $1,488,888.

That works out to 0.001% of the Bezos family fortune, just in case either Jeff or MacKenzie wanted to pick up a little memento of happier times together.

Open house Sunday, if you're in the Seattle area. Here's what else I'm reading today.


 

Published on: Feb 13, 2019
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