Having spent 20 years building the Temple and his own palace, Solomon sold 20 towns to King Hiram of Tyre for 9,000 pounds of gold (or he gave them as security for the debt he was building up). Was it worth it? Maybe it was, if building a magnificent Temple and palace are the goal, but the towns failed to impress King Hiram:
1 Kings 9:12-14But when Hiram came from Tyre to see the towns Solomon had given him, he was not at all pleased with them. ‘What kind of towns are these, my brother?’ he asked. So Hiram called that area Cabul (which means ‘worthless’), as it is still known today. Nevertheless, Hiram paid Solomon 9,000 pounds of gold.
The incident also showed a lack of generosity in Solomon’s dealing with the King who had been so supportive of Solomon and his father David. There’s no evidence it affected their future relationship, though.
Even worse, these 20 towns were in Galilee. They might not have been the best of the land, but they were part of the land that God had instructed the Israelites to occupy.