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Comments about ‘Housing report shows nation still down over 2008’

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Counties in Utah hit especially hard

Published: Monday, Oct. 22 2012 4:56 p.m. MDT

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Reasonable Person
Layton, UT

Your home is merely a box to keep your stuff in.

Whoever convinced people that their house was an "investment", something to be flipped over and over in a mad scheme to get rich quickly, did a disservice to the United States of America and our economy.

Stay in your house. Keep paying for it.
You signed the loan. Isn't it personal responsibility?

Joe Moe
Logan, UT

Reasonable, I think you are missing the mark. If a person can sell their house, cash in, and move up, that's not the problem. The problem was the predatory lending and unsafe mortgage practices of the banks. THEY are the ones that have done the nation a disservice. Also, there is consensus building (among economists....bankers and politicians won't TOUCH this idea) that the mortgage interest tax deduction distorts the housing market and elicits some of the problematic behavior you are trying to identify in your comment. That deduction also is very regressive, greatly favoring the wealthy home buyers who are buying mansions. Many economists advocate eliminating that deduction, which will correct the market distortions, resulting in lower home prices across the board. For more details on this thinking, do a search about mortgage interest tax on NPR's website.

Abe Sarvis
Cedar City, UT

2008 is not a good point to use as a benchmark. That was at the end of a several year period of increasing value that was based on a great deal of market manipulation, including extremely low interest rates, waivers of impact fees, and general encouragement of construction at rates not justified by actual population growth, fueling home construction as an investment bubble. Try comparing the current housing market to 2002 instead, and you'll get a much better indication of whether the market has rebounded to its normal condition. We don't need it returning to an unsustainable frenzy.

andyjaggy
American Fork, UT

Agreed. I have always thought of a home as a place to live, not an investment. The upshot of this thinking is you don't care terribly much if your home falls in value, it still provides the same value to you whether or not the market values it as much! The only concern is if you have to sell to relocate, then it can become a problem if the home has lost value.

My wife and I bought our first home last year, and we bought what we could comfortably afford then, on the salary I made then. All sorts of people tried to give me advice, bad advice mind you. People told me that I HAD to have a 3 car garage, that I wouldn't be able to function with less than 3000 square feet, and that I should buy the absolute most that I could afford; that I would "grow into it" as my salary increased over the years. I told them unless they were willing to sign a legal document guaranteeing that my salary would increase for the next 10 years I thought that was a stupid idea.

Joe Moe
Logan, UT

Love it AndyJaggy! Would that we were all as wise, and not just when it comes to houses!

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