Mon, 23 Jan 2012, 5:48am PST
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The problem is that So Cal is also home to the most expensive real estate in the country. You've got to take the nation as a whole. Rich people will drive up the prices in elite neighborhoods no matter which country you are talking about.
Please refer to chart ES-2 in the article you linked. The United States remains the cheapest first world country to live in.
Mon, 23 Jan 2012, 6:50am PST
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only thing that matters is local affordability.
but not for everyone, especially thanks to Prop 13 which is locking the cost-of-housing for people who purchased 10 years ago or more to a very low level.
So "local affordability" has to be weighed against supply (few) and demand (immense), and the general expectation that prices (and rents) 10 years from now will be twice what they are now.
A friend bought in Japan last year, and even though he paid a big chunk of yen for a postage-stamp lot, and Japan has seen two decades of depreciation with no end in sight, I still thought his purchase was not a bad idea, because the general trend of economics is for land prices and rents to bust upwards every so often.
1970s , 1980s, 1990s (in some places), 2000s (and then some).
The 2010s is just starting. While inflation can't cure much of what ails the economy, it is a lever the PTB can still reach for should they have to.
It's might be debatable how much inflation will help home prices vs hurt them (if the inflation is just cost inflation and not wage inflation), but thus far in history that's not how inflation has worked.
Buying now is not really being a knife-catcher -- the knives are laying on the floor. Now, the floor may drop out from here, but that would be surprising to me, even though I think it's possible. Even if the floor drops out, the downside risk from here is much lower than the upside risk of not-buying.
Mon, 23 Jan 2012, 6:54am PST
Umm, happen to notice San Francisco and San Jose nudged securely right under Melbourne? Yeah SoCal's got nothing on the RBA and expect that gap to only grow as unlike SoCal, we are not subject to the rules of supply and demand that beginning to finally kick in.
Our Venture Capitalist scammers drumming our shadow economy and real estate tricksters on every level hiding shadow inventory; the wildcard that makes the Real Bay Area levitate upon the steel bubble that popped elsewhere long ago. All while SoCal opulent areas burn down to the ground in every sense of the word.