current events

Flipping houses, flipping minds

At this point we all know about the US recession that hit really hard in 2007, 2008 causing the bottom to fall out of the housing market. Right as that was occuring, we bought a house in one of the most heavily taxed counties in the US. Talk about bad timing. And let me tell you, for many cities and regions the market has not completely recovered. Despite these circumstances the American Dream and love affair with home ownership still pounds wildly in our collective hearts.

Just this past week, I was talking to a friend who is not a millionaire who was thinking of buying a second house “just because” and thinking of selling it in two years for a good profit. I remember when I finally decided to take the home-buying plunge I went through a lot of agonizing. I made lists of lists. No way I would buy a second house “just because”.

A few years before I bought my house I met a colleague who had bought two houses and was contemplating a third. She made like a third of my salary. I wondered how she managed to do it. I asked her at one point why and how.

She sat me down and told me how she had been at a low point in life having gone through a series of bad family relationships and events. In turn she attended a month-long “seminar” in order to find a new direction. She came out inspired to do something jarring. She then found a way to get a bit of money and buy a house. It jarred her life. She became bold in her actions. She bought, rented out and flipped.

Buying a home used to be about comfort and having a solid place to go to at the end of the day for many years. You would raise a family. Now its a money-making piece that you might get rid of in a New York minute. It almost seems that our love affair with a warm cozy home as the base of our operations, our being, are long gone. I for one know that when my son is grown up he will have celebrated Christmas in at least three different homes in his time. And there is not necessarily something wrong with that. It is just a sign of the changing times.

This serves as another sign of how our brains will be wired differently as we will have to access memories in slightly different ways. Perhaps it will be for the better. Our memories can be further chuncked and specifically contextualized making for easier retrieval. Exciting times are ahead for our brains and minds as we keep changing the way we live and move about.

6 replies »

  1. Being an old-fashioned old fart, who has lost some $ as a result of moves as well, I still think of a home as a place to live (comfortably), and not as an investment.

    I enjoy, for some odd unknown reason, watching all those HGTV and DIY shows related to real estate. I also watch too many reality shows on Bravo. These make me think that the rich truly are different, especially re their priorities.

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