You bring up some very pertinent and valid points. A big, big problem in the U.S. right now is that people have forgotten what it means to own property. Years ago, it was one’s own castle, or spot on earth. That was the value, not some “spin the wheel of house flipping and see if we get rich” scam that it is of late. As such, few care about their communities enough to build them up, resulting in a transient society.
I feel for those who are upside down, because they may not have known what was coming, although all the signs were there. My father’s late father’s rule (he’d be nearly 100 now and the rule was once a common adage) of thumb, was that anything over double one’s gross salary, is more than someone can afford a mortgage on. For over 100 years, that has held true (the most comprehensive study was a 116 year period from 1890 to 2006). Only in very recent years have existing homes been so high in price (and rising until the late 2000’s) that they were unaffordable in price to the common man, but manipulated through currency manipulation and easy credit.
I hope it was unintended, but whether or not, a big consequence to that bubble is the bankrupting of those in the middle class who were unfortunate enough to not see the signs. My parents, thankfully did in about 2003 and got out of the city while the getting was good. I feel bad for the innocent caught up in the fray, but pray they’ll teach their children that the biblical proverb is still true that truly the borrower is servant to the lender.
And as an end note, property taxes have got to go before we become even more of a fuedal system than we already are becoming.
For a long time a house was where you raised a family; as more people defer or avoid families altogether, that is removing the incentive to invest 30 years’ payments in a place when demographic changes after 30 months can be shocking.
At the same time, there are few people now who work a job that is not at risk of either 1) being sent overseas, or 2) having scabs imported to replace them. In this environment, houses are being lost by even the most prudent buyers. We are being reduced to serfs, and the elimination of private ownership of property is just one step; autos aren’t far off.