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 Post subject: USA: Housing affordability in California
PostPosted: Mon Oct 02, 2017 7:39 am 
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10 points to keep in mind about housing affordability in California - -> ... story.html

Many politicians and activists push simplistic solutions when it comes to California’s housing woes. Some promote subsidies; others density. Some sell infill as the solution; others blame everything on the state’s byzantine laws. Maybe I'm getting old, or maybe the election of 2016 just reminded me to beware of politicians appealing to the masses with buzzwords. We live in a complex world, and remedies for complex problems such as housing are complex.

Nuance and straight talk will help us solve this crisis. With that in mind, I crafted these 10 points to inform the debate.
7. People want to live where there are jobs and culture. For years, government has tried to subsidize housing in expensive areas. But rather than bring housing where there are jobs, maybe we should try to foster more jobs where there is abundant housing. Making inexpensive areas more livable would also help bridge the gap between rich and poor in California. If an employer is willing to relocate to an area with cheap housing and core infrastructure (transit, water, healthcare), then our policies should facilitate that.

8. Housing in Manhattan, San Francisco, Silicon Valley and many Los Angeles neighborhoods has become a Veblen good. Like a Fendi purse, the more exclusive some goods appear and the more expensive their price, the more desirable they become to certain consumers. The people engaging in absurd bidding wars, driving up the cost of real estate in tony neighborhoods, are not dissuaded by stratospheric prices. In fact, it makes those neighborhoods even more attractive to some.

9. One factor in skyrocketing home prices in the last decade has been the Federal Reserve. It has been creating trillions of dollars to buy government bonds and prop up the economy. That makes the value of dollars (and interest rates) sink and the value of assets (such as houses) rise. Programs such as housing subsidies that reduce costs are just a drop when compared to the immense bucketful of money that has increased asset prices. Activists should start focusing some of their attention on national monetary policy.

10. While having a roof over your head is a human right, being hip is not. Even during times of unprecedented price increases, there are often bargains to be had in places that are a little less trendy. Some, but not all, of the complaints about affordability come from people who are simply frustrated that they can’t live in the stylish neighborhood of their choice.

there is more

California losing lure over costly housing - -> ... ly-housing

With its unique geographical advantages and natural conditions, California has been a popular investment and tourist destination.
However, its stubbornly high housing prices have deterred many people from moving into the state, and many are even considering moving out.

“We have been renting an apartment for over 10 years, and still cannot buy our own house as the rent increases every year,” resident Li Yunqi said. “The American dream is about a house and a green card. But here in California, it’s not easy to let your American dream come true. We have decided to move to Texas as there is a good job opportunity for me.”

A survey by the University of California Berkeley’s Institute of Governmental Studies showed 56 per cent of California’s population, including homeowners, were considering moving out of the state. In Los Angeles, 59 per cent were mulling a similar move.

there is more


Classical scholar, Victor Davis Hanson, resides in Central California, educates at Stanford in Palo Alto, and addresses the political, economic, and cultural disparity between the liberal elites along the Pacific Coast and the rest of the state, 40 miles east of the coast. At the American Freedom Alliance's "California: From gold to dust" conference in L.A. 20 August '17.

Victor Davis idea is that most of the middle class that voted republican has moved over the years to other states and as a uni-party state with old out of touch rulers California no longer has much sway nationally except for fund raising activities. The laws made by the people on the coastal strip don't have a direct impact on them due to having higher average incomes, but it's hollowed out the middle class in the rest of the state who left leaving only a lower income economic class who are dependant on welfare - hence the two states of California.

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