How can I ensure access to housing?

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Karlx1's picture
Karlx1
Status: Member (Offline)
Joined: Dec 14 2011
Posts: 5
How can I ensure access to housing?

Hi all,

I haven't been around here very long, so I might have missed this in the WSID section or the forum, but maybe one of you could help me out here.

After reading through the interesting "Closing The Collapse Gap" (http://www.energybulletin.net/node/23259) in the Essential Articles section, I wondered about people being forced to leave their homes, like during the housing crisis in the US or like what recently happened in Spain for example.

So I asked myself, how could I ensure access to housing? What would be useful strategies?

At the time, I'm renting. What would rental prices do during hyper inflation? Will they shoot up and Would I likely not be able to pay the resulting rent? Or would the opposite be the case, if housing prices would fall due to an economic crisis? What if my landlord can't pay his loan and goes bankrupt, i.e. would it preferable that my landlord owns his house(s) clean? What if I would have to look for other housing in turbulent times?

In any case, after reading through part of the articles, I strongly consider moving, since my current home doesn't have a garden.

Would I rather buy a house? And get a personal loan for it? Or buy a small studio, which I could maybe own 'clean'. Or would it be better to rent? Would I better go for a long term rental agreement, say 9 years or so? How do you make a fair deal with your landlord, whilst preparing for possible hyper inflation?

And what about the access to a little plot of land or a big garden?

Would the prices of fertile land go down in the same way as housing prices? Or on the contrary, stay high or go even higher? After all the area I live in is fertile, but very densely populated. Would it be better to buy a plot of 'farmland' nearby my home? Or lease it? Or is it preferable to have a big garden?

If you have any tips on this topic, I would be very thankful if you could share them with me.

Regards,
Karl

Wendy S. Delmater's picture
Wendy S. Delmater
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Dec 13 2009
Posts: 1988
rent vs. buy if TSHTF

This is opinion only, but I would NOT buy housing unless the property was in a semi-rural or in-town rural community where you could be part of a community (safety in numbers) and grow at least a good-sized kitchen garden. Straight farm acreage is currently in a rising speculative bubble yet home prices are dropping: you might even get a better deal on farmable land if it was a large lot with a small house on it! Even then I'd be wary of a taking out a loan unless I could afford it -really afford it, with no strain. Keep in mind that you might lose your job, and that often when a currency is devalued, the value of any loans is not. The good news about taking out a loan you can easily afford, however, is that inflation might--might--make your loan easier to pay off in real dollars. That again assumes you have income.

Renting is what I did until recently - it gave me flexibility and allowed me to move if I had to. I did not buy a home when I could have because the traditional spread between monthly rental prices was disconnected from monthly mortgage prices, because home prices were diconnected from reality by low mortgage rates and a speculative bubble. That is changing since the real estate bubble burst. Housig prices continue to fall as people double up with relatives when they lose their jobs in this economy. But will that make rental costs more expensive? What you are asking is to some extent an inflation/deflation question.  There are all sorts of threads on inflation vs. deflation on this site. My personal belief is that we are in for inflation on necessities and deflation on luxuries. But while housing is a necessity, it is so overbuilt in the US that I see rental properties begging for tentants, and offering all sorts of deals. That being said, if I rented I'd go for a month-to-month rental so I had the ability to leave when I wanted to if an area became untennable.

If I were in your situation, if I could not leave (for work or whatever) I'd want to have options, and a long--term lease or owning a home ties you to one plavce. You say you live in a highly populated area. So did I (long Island, NY) but I moved to semi--rural SC in part to have a little less competition from human predators in a collapse situation. You might look for a very inexpensive place to stay in the populous area, and a weekend home to own and fix up in case of collapse.

my two cents,

Safewrite

tictac1's picture
tictac1
Status: Silver Member (Offline)
Joined: Sep 25 2009
Posts: 175
Just adding to safewrite

Good stuff.  I would add, you need to know YOUR area.  Real estate is highly variable from place to place, both in terms of dollar cost and relative cost.  For example, if I were to buy a small farm where I live, I'd need a million dollars.  That's right, for a working farm you'd need a million, even if that was only a few acres.  Pretty ridiculous, eh?  Homes on undeveloped land or in town have dropped significantly in cost, while our rents here have not only gone up, but they are quite hard to find, as a direct result of the bubble bursting.

For my area, the best bet would be to buy a small home on a few acres of raw dirt, and build it into a workable situation.

Consider finding others with similar goals, and setting up a community garden.  You might be able to find someone with few acres of land they aren't using, that would be willing to lease it for growing/raising animals, especially if you can explain that organic farming improves the land, quite the opposite of conventional ag.  I know one guy that's made that work here.

Good luck!

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