Saturday, May 10, 2014

Star Tribune Published My Piece on Homeownership for the Working Class

I could not be more pleased!  The Star Tribune opted to publish the piece I wrote earlier this week in response to the article about corporate investors buying up single family homes in North Minneapolis.  You can find it in the Opinion section of the Star Tribune today, May 10, 2014.

Click Here to Read the Saturday, April 10, 2014 Opinion Piece

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Investors Buying Up High-Quality Single Family Homes

The Star Tribune recently did an article about corporate investors purchasing a large volume of property in North Minneapolis and other areas of the Twin Cities.  
There is a bigger picture here. Homeownership is a key way working class families build wealth - and when I say wealth, I'm not talking millions here - it's a way for a family to have a nest egg of maybe $75,000 or $100,000 to retire on or pass on to their kids. Now these single family homes will build wealth for corporations. This is a tragic change in our economy for the working class.

Yes - I own the duplex next door to my home, so people can say "you own a rental - how is that different" - but these are single-family homes being bought up by the hundreds across the Twin Cities, during a time when inventory levels are low and many of these are not foreclosures, and ownership will be based in a corporation, not by a neighbor vested in keeping up the property. My prediction is eventually, once all of these are cash flowing on paper, the corporation will do an IPO on Wallstreet and then there will be shareholders who own these homes, much like the securitization of mortgages.

For all of the folks who want to write this off as a "it's not illegal" and "the free market exists for a reason" thing - think about what your life would be like today if that home your parents bought in the 1960s or 1970s couldn't have been bought. Could they have bought their next house? Could they have helped you pay for college? Would they have anything to help pay for their long-term care expenses as seniors now? Homeownership is one of the few wealth-building mechanisms the working class have - we need to realize what the impact is on families and communities who lose that chance.
Here is the link to the article - please read and share: