"That's a powerful cocktail working against the housing recovery," said Mike Larson, an analyst at Weiss Research. "There's going to be a long-lasting psychological hesitancy for ordinary buyers to believe again in the dream of building wealth through homeownership."That's what got us into this mess in the first place, you cretin! Buying a house is merely exchanging cash for a dry place to keep your stuff; it is not a magic "wealth building" slot machine. Nowhere is there written a guarantee that the value of your bungalow will increase faster than inflation and the cost of repainting and shingle replacement. If you want to actually generate real wealth, you need something more than some dirt with a box on it.
I grew up in a town full of corporate gypsies for IBM and HP, among others. If people were going to be there for only a year or three, they'd rent. Heck, if it was just a one year hitch, married men frequently wouldn't even move their families, choosing instead a 1 br. in one of the "No Kids Allowed" apartment complexes that were still legal back then. Yet at the height of the boom, people would buy a house fully expecting to realize a profit in three years or less, which should have set the Dutch Tulip Bulb Analogy warning bells ringing in minds of even the most reckless of gamblers, maybe even congressmen. And yet we have people looking back and viewing that as a normal state to which we will hopefully soon return!
(H/T to SurvivalBlog.)