Family Housing: Dream or Nightmare?

by Fred Case



The article discusses problems related to home ownership in California, and rest of the U.S. Home ownership has been a goal of almost every American family since this nation was founded, but in 1977 less than one-fourth of all newly formed families seem likely to realize this goal. Moreover, many families are now threatened with financial disaster because of the high costs of owning and operating the homes they occupy. Willingness to buy, unfortunately, is not necessarily equated with capacity to purchase. Early estimates of the price of new homes in 1977 suggest that the ranges would be between $45,000 and $60,000. The financial problems facing a typical California homemaker and buyer in 1977 are discussed. Since all evidence on the costs of buying and owning a home indicate that costs should be related to the current market value of the home, the 1977 California home buyer would be faced with total cash outlays up to 44 percent of the family income. Logically such high costs of home ownership would discourage home purchases but the sales continue at an unabated rate.

California Management Review

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Published at Berkeley Haas for more than sixty years, California Management Review seeks to share knowledge that challenges convention and shows a better way of doing business.

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