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Posts Tagged ‘housing bubble’

Seven Reasons We’re Buying a Home and Four Reasons We’re Not

March 28, 2011 Comments off

irvinehousingblog.com

Although the housing bubble and bust may have shattered notions that home prices have nowhere to go but up, Americans haven’t lost their love for owning a home.  In the latest Allstate/National JournalHeartland Monitor poll, homeownership ranked second, just behind raising a family, in people’s definition of the American Dream. Despite new home sales’ drop to a record low, about four-fifths of respondents said that owning a home is still a better financial decision than renting, and nearly nine in 10 homeowners say would buy their home again.

Those results also underscore the extent to which Americans see buying a home as a deeply personal decision. It seems the decision to buy a home is made from the heart, while the decision to rent comes from the wallet.

That is a great way to look at the situation. Most people want to buy and own. Those who look rationally at the costs often chose to rent, not because it’s the most emotionally pleasing choice, but because it’s the most financially sound decision. Those who chose to rent recognize that being house poor is its own form of Read more…

Stocks Up, Houses Down, And What This Means for Most Americans

February 5, 2011 1 comment

Put your ear to the ground and you can almost hear the bulls stampeding. The Dow closed above 12,000 Tuesday for the first time since June 2008. The Dow is up 4 percent this year after increasing 11 percent in 2010. The Standard & Poor 500 is also up 4 percent this year, and the Nasdaq index, up 3.7 percent.

“The U.S. economy is back!” says a prominent Wall Streeter.

Ummm. Not quite.

Corporate earnings remain strong (better-than-expected reports from UPS and Pfizer fueled Tuesday’s rally). The Fed’s continuing slush pump of money into the financial system is also lifting the animal spirits of Wall Street. Traders like nothing more than speculating with almost-free money. And tumult in the Middle East is pushing more foreign money into the relatively safe and reliable American equities market.

It’s simply wonderful, especially if you’re among the richest 1 percent of Americans who own more than half of all the shares of stock traded on Wall Street. Hey, you might feel chipper even if you’re among the next richest 9 percent, who own 40 percent.

But most Americans own a tiny sliver of Read more…

Falling off the American Dream treadmill – Real median U.S. household income falls under $50,000. Poverty rate has grown exponentially since 2000, during the housing bubble.

January 30, 2011 Comments off

The U.S. Census Bureau recently released troubling data on the status of American families.  The first disturbing point was that 43.6 million Americans now fall under the poverty category.  This works out to 1 out of 7 Americans.  The growth has come from many people falling off the middle class treadmill.  While the echoes of recovery blast through Wall Street the grim reality for most people is that there is a greater and greater divide occurring.  The top 1 percent still has significant control over financial resources and wealth disparity is as high as it was during the 1920s.  While many American families wait in lines outside of Wal-Marts so their food assistance debit cards refill to buy food, those calling a recovery are usually those who have been protected via bailouts since the recession started.

The data on poverty is grim and disturbing:

poverty rate chart

Source:  Census

This data takes into full account the deeper blow of the recession.  The supposed recovery is nowhere Read more…