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Nice Guy Eddie

Destruction of the working class

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7 minutes ago, BradInATX said:

Manhattan is 20 square miles. That's the equivalent of a square something like 35 to Mopac and Oltorf to MLK.

Once more a simple, low effort disingenuous post. Try harder. Or perhaps this conversation is just beyond you.

 

https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/1638-8th-Ave-APT-2J-Brooklyn-NY-11215/112508260_zpid/

 

Brooklyn.

 

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1 hour ago, Ghost of LL said:

Man--you're just buying into this irrational cult of home-ownerism.  It doesn't make sense.

Why is it an unquestionable benefit for the factory owner to own, rather than rent, his little modest home in which he raises his kids?

Because rent is rising faster than a stable mortgage payment. The equity part of it is nice, maybe get a profit, but knowing that your bills are going to stay the same for years is much more reassuring. Not one year did I pay the same as the year before when I was renting. 

And there are plenty of skilled mfers pulling down only 35k a year. If you are stuck in BFE anywhere the local economy will not allow you to make the same as the big city. I make more  than what I did in Stephenville. The same applies for almost all hourly jobs. 12 bucks an hour to start at the Aldi in Denton or minimum wage at Brookshires in Comanche. Extrapolate that to the rest of the rural vs suburban divide and here we are. You are either stuck in the backwaters or you get the hell out. Some people are too scared to make that jump or can't for a host of reasons. 

 

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4 minutes ago, cactusflinthead said:

Because rent is rising faster than a stable mortgage payment. The equity part of it is nice, maybe get a profit, but knowing that your bills are going to stay the same for years is much more reassuring. Not one year did I pay the same as the year before when I was renting. 

And there are plenty of skilled mfers pulling down only 35k a year. If you are stuck in BFE anywhere the local economy will not allow you to make the same as the big city. I make more  than what I did in Stephenville. The same applies for almost all hourly jobs. 12 bucks an hour to start at the Aldi in Denton or minimum wage at Brookshires in Comanche. Extrapolate that to the rest of the rural vs suburban divide and here we are. You are either stuck in the backwaters or you get the hell out. Some people are too scared to make that jump or can't for a host of reasons. 

 

But the delta between what you make in Stephenville versus Houston is usually equal to the delta in the cost of living in the bigger city, so isn't just a wash? e.g you make $500 more in Houston but you also pay $500 more in rent in Houston.

The real win is to find the geo that has the above average pay higher than median average and a cheap cost of living to maximize your labor and earning potential. Those areas usually have a short shelf life before the cat is out of the bag, but that is absolutely what has fueled Texas/North Texas growth over the past 20 years.

Edited by Rougarou

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2 minutes ago, Rougarou said:

But the delta between what you make in Stephenville versus Houston is usually equal to the delta in the cost of living in the bigger city, so isn't just a wash? e.g you make $500 more in Houston but you also pay $500 more in rent in Houston.

The real win is to find the geo that has the above average pay higher than median average and a cheap cost of living to maximize your labor and earning potential. Those areas usually have a short shelf life before the cat is out of the bag, but that is absolutely what has fueled Texas/North Texas growth over the past 20 years.

The only thing that is cheaper is the rent. All the other bills are more. Gas, groceries, clothing, and the thousand of little things add up fast. I make up the difference in rent pretty fast. 

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2 hours ago, BradInATX said:

The reasons why it doesn't make sense to own a home for most is because it's hard to own a home when you're poor. Which is the entire point. The point is that in the past just about every factory worker and above could own at least a little modest home in which they could raise their kids, retire (without a monthly rent payment), and leave to their children to help them get a start in life. And that has completely gone away. Now owning a home is a "privilege" enjoyed almost primarily by the middle class and above.

What you're saying, that it makes more sense for people below a certain socio-economic status to rent, isn't a solution. It's the entire crux of the problem that I'm putting forward. 

No I am not saying that.  Some other people that have studied it in depth are saying that.

 

What I AM saying is that blindly assuming that home ownership is a uniformly positive goal, as we have said in this country for 50 years or more, may not be smart or good policy.

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7 minutes ago, Rougarou said:

The real win is to find the geo that has the above average pay higher than median average and a cheap cost of living to maximize your labor and earning potential.

So...Houston.  

You can find houses to rent for $1000-1250 all over the city.   When I first moved in with the wife, we rented for 5 years.  $1200/month for a 5yo, 1800 ft^2, 3/2/2 in the ever so sought after Katy school district, too.  I don't know what the guy built it for, but I paid for about half of it over those 5 years.     I think aside from AC filters, he had to put $100 into the air conditioning once.  Believe me, that neighborhood was chock full of "working class", and plenty of folks not working too.   It was "safe" compared to any lower income apartment complexes in the city.  Once we could afford it, we moved to a much nicer place and started having kids.   It's available; though you might have to give up the unlimited data plan and HBO off the satellite package to make it work.

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Working class people struggle to buy homes because of their inability to have a down payments and their propensity to have bad credit. It's one reason they may have been hurt the most by the 2008 bubble/crash. 

And when the economy drops, they can be some of the first to lose their homes in as foreclosure because their jobs/wages can be some of the first to be impacted by a contracting economy.   

Owning a house is the easiest method to build long term wealth in the US. But that is contingent on your ability to maintain a steady income and limited unexpected large expenses over a long period. Lose your house 5 years into ownership and you were 10x better off renting the entire time: you paid more than rent, your credit is now shot, and you still may owe the bank.

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Just now, Nice Guy Eddie said:

Working class people struggle to buy homes because of their inability to have a down payments and their propensity to have bad credit. It's one reason they may have been hurt the most by the 2008 bubble/crash. 

And when the economy drops, they can be some of the first to lose their homes in as foreclosure because their jobs/wages can be some of the first to be impacted by a contracting economy.   

Owning a house is the easiest method to build long term wealth in the US. But that is contingent on your ability to maintain a steady income and limited unexpected large expenses over a long period. Lose your house 5 years into ownership and you were 10x better off renting the entire time: you paid more than rent, your credit is now shot, and you still may owe the bank.

And if you wind up buying in a declining neighborhood that goes to shit over your 30 year mortgage payment, the savings aspect of it turns into a bad deal, too.

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8 minutes ago, Nice Guy Eddie said:

Working class people struggle to buy homes because of their inability to have a down payments and their propensity to have bad credit. It's one reason they may have been hurt the most by the 2008 bubble/crash. 

And when the economy drops, they can be some of the first to lose their homes in as foreclosure because their jobs/wages can be some of the first to be impacted by a contracting economy.   

Owning a house is the easiest method to build long term wealth in the US. But that is contingent on your ability to maintain a steady income and limited unexpected large expenses over a long period. Lose your house 5 years into ownership and you were 10x better off renting the entire time: you paid more than rent, your credit is now shot, and you still may owe the bank.

And they also lose the mobility to chase jobs, i.e. to get out of Ada Oklahoma

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48 minutes ago, Rougarou said:

You touch on tangential points about community and affordable housing and renters and it's a paradox. It is generally understood that renters are not good for community, home/neighborhood values, and accountability versus home owners. But working class folks need to rent and there are some cities where the rental market is 70%+ of all available homes and so of course people don't want to put roots in those areas and either use their homes as rental properties or sell and leave.

The ugly truth of this is that working class/renters also have to own some of their behaviors and tendencies (which isn't always their fault, we've talked a lot about not having good parenting, quality education and wherewithal). If people trash neighborhoods or homes or live in such ways that home values are affected (e.g. put up with crime or fail to raise your kids well, which affects their behavior and learning which affects the public schools, etc. as two examples) you cannot reasonably expect people with the means to leave, to make decisions to own and live in such areas and raise a family in those environments.  It's paradoxical and I know I sound like a decorum republican here but I'm not, but as a homeowner I've had to consider these things as well.

As a homeowner/buyer, yes you have to consider those things and I agree it is a dilemma our family has pondered as well for a variety of reasons additional to the ones you've stated.

However, stepping back for a moment w/respect to housing. Neighborhoods and to be more specific subdivisions often 'age.' Typically a new place with a couple of hundred to a couple of thousand homes goes in. Many young couples or young families move in, their children grow up, and the folks retire and move (especially if the home is too large for easy maintenance or they don't want to pay for the maintenance). In a positive situation, those homes would resell to more young couples and for many years that is just the case. But you do have the real estate investment market/management companies/realtor-landlords that buy the homes and essentially turn it (the subdivision) into a large rental market and it becomes more difficult to attract buyers. I know this only because when we were buying our house, they kept reminding us which subdivisions were majority rentals. The realtor was only trying to be helpful, but thinking back, that has to influence a home buyer as well as increase the agents bottom line. I know very little about how all that works, but as that shift from owner occupied housing happens, as you said earlier-people with the means to leave do so (as they watch the shift in ownership) it seem to hasten its demise. I hate to use that word, demise, but it seems to be the feeling that they have. That their neighborhood is being turned into a 'not nice' neighborhood and since they have the means to do so, they leave.

HOAs can have rules regarding rental properties, but many areas are too old to have had those in place and the cat's out of the bag. In our community, the city council has well funded real estate developers and agents as members and the electorate keeps voting them in (and then strangely complaining about traffic congestion, property taxes, and sprawl-odd?!). Our street has a covenant that allows for rentals but only for SFRs, no rent-by-the-room or multiple unrelated occupants (aka student housing) and our street has thus far maintained a 95% owner occupancy. It is a mix of young and old and everyone gets along even the cranks like me. Although come to think of it, I don't do that NextDoor so for all I know they talk smack behind my back. Which is an even better reason for staying off NextDoor IMO.

 

But back to leaving the neighborhood. We (as in Americans) use the word 'escape' a lot when we refer to poverty and being poor. Is the working class included in that? Should one aspire to 'escape' them and their life? We have the freedom to associate with whomever we please, and I'm sure none of you would try and stop any upper class income person who decided to do just that but is it really any less ambitious of one to live among the working class even if one's salary and education is not? Does this go back to the consumerism we discussed several pages ago? In order to 'get ahead' (ambition) do you have to both live AND work with the level to which you wish to aspire or to maintain?

 

 

Sorry, I'm waiting on some sourdough bread to rise and the weather is making it slow so I'm overthinking things.

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13 minutes ago, Nice Guy Eddie said:

Owning a house is the easiest method to build long term wealth in the US.

I don't believe this.  It can be a great investment.  It can also be stagnant af.  And now that the tax breaks are disappearing/tightened up, getting less and less attractive.

11 minutes ago, TwiceHorn said:

And if you wind up buying in a declining neighborhood that goes to shit over your 30 year mortgage payment, the savings aspect of it turns into a bad deal, too

Exactly.  Or you buy in a great hood, and then they build apartments all around you.  Or your local school gets dinged and no longer highly though of.  Or you have aggys move in on both sides.  There's alot of shit that can go wrong to keep that "investment" from doing anything, even without factoring the macro market movements.

Edited by fattyflattie

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37 minutes ago, cactusflinthead said:

Because rent is rising faster than a stable mortgage payment. The equity part of it is nice, maybe get a profit, but knowing that your bills are going to stay the same for years is much more reassuring. Not one year did I pay the same as the year before when I was renting. 

And there are plenty of skilled mfers pulling down only 35k a year. If you are stuck in BFE anywhere the local economy will not allow you to make the same as the big city. I make more  than what I did in Stephenville. The same applies for almost all hourly jobs. 12 bucks an hour to start at the Aldi in Denton or minimum wage at Brookshires in Comanche. Extrapolate that to the rest of the rural vs suburban divide and here we are. You are either stuck in the backwaters or you get the hell out. Some people are too scared to make that jump or can't for a host of reasons. 

 

That's why most people live in bfe with roommates, and pay a cheap rent while they drive/bus a 30 minutes to a hour to get to work and back. They may also have a side job if they really get in a pinch.

One guy here where I work welds for okay money then does the Uber/Lyft thing for side income. 

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5 minutes ago, Mrs Whiggins said:

As a homeowner/buyer, yes you have to consider those things and I agree it is a dilemma our family has pondered as well for a variety of reasons additional to the ones you've stated.

However, stepping back for a moment w/respect to housing. Neighborhoods and to be more specific subdivisions often 'age.' Typically a new place with a couple of hundred to a couple of thousand homes goes in. Many young couples or young families move in, their children grow up, and the folks retire and move (especially if the home is too large for easy maintenance or they don't want to pay for the maintenance). In a positive situation, those homes would resell to more young couples and for many years that is just the case. But you do have the real estate investment market/management companies/realtor-landlords that buy the homes and essentially turn it (the subdivision) into a large rental market and it becomes more difficult to attract buyers. I know this only because when we were buying our house, they kept reminding us which subdivisions were majority rentals. The realtor was only trying to be helpful, but thinking back, that has to influence a home buyer as well as increase the agents bottom line. I know very little about how all that works, but as that shift from owner occupied housing happens, as you said earlier-people with the means to leave do so (as they watch the shift in ownership) it seem to hasten its demise. I hate to use that word, demise, but it seems to be the feeling that they have. That their neighborhood is being turned into a 'not nice' neighborhood and since they have the means to do so, they leave.

HOAs can have rules regarding rental properties, but many areas are too old to have had those in place and the cat's out of the bag. In our community, the city council has well funded real estate developers and agents as members and the electorate keeps voting them in (and then strangely complaining about traffic congestion, property taxes, and sprawl-odd?!). Our street has a covenant that allows for rentals but only for SFRs, no rent-by-the-room or multiple unrelated occupants (aka student housing) and our street has thus far maintained a 95% owner occupancy. It is a mix of young and old and everyone gets along even the cranks like me. Although come to think of it, I don't do that NextDoor so for all I know they talk smack behind my back. Which is an even better reason for staying off NextDoor IMO.

 

But back to leaving the neighborhood. We (as in Americans) use the word 'escape' a lot when we refer to poverty and being poor. Is the working class included in that? Should one aspire to 'escape' them and their life? We have the freedom to associate with whomever we please, and I'm sure none of you would try and stop any upper class income person who decided to do just that but is it really any less ambitious of one to live among the working class even if one's salary and education is not? Does this go back to the consumerism we discussed several pages ago? In order to 'get ahead' (ambition) do you have to both live AND work with the level to which you wish to aspire or to maintain?

 

 

Sorry, I'm waiting on some sourdough bread to rise and the weather is making it slow so I'm overthinking things.

The phenomenon of "disposable neighborhoods" has intrigued me for a long time.

There's a swath of Dallas that's pretty large, from north of downtown between Hwy 75 and say Marsh Lane east-west and extending up to Beltline or Alpha Road north, that has been for its entire existence a "regenerating" neighborhood (really a collection of neighborhoods) and a pretty uniformly good one that "got better."

Houston and its inner suburbs, on the other hand, seems to be mostly disposable neighborhoods that go from a first generation of owners into renters and bare subsistence owners.  And the schools go down with it.

Houston has its regenerating hoods, also, as does Austin, but they seem to be a lot smaller.  And Dallas has its fair share of disposable neighborhoods, to include most suburbs.

I'm not exactly sure what drives this.

 

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3 minutes ago, TwiceHorn said:

I'm not exactly sure what drives this.

 

I am certain there are more capable brains on this board that could provide insight, but from my musings, I have to wonder if a potential driver could be substandard construction, i.e. hastily built with poor foundation reinforcement and materials and/or school boundaries.

You mention the schools go down with it and that is often the case. But school boundaries are fluid and can and are changed. New schools open due to growth, boundaries are redrawn, etc. What you will sometimes find is that when the zones are redrawn they are solely based on student proximity (meaning no busing; parents complain about busing and busing gets the school board members ousted.)and thus any downward trends feed themselves. This isn't always the case, and new schools are sometimes built in low socioeconomic neighborhoods but many times, the flight is accelerated when a new subdivision is proposed (city docs & permits submitted), the developer makes the announcement and a school board (anticipating growth and trying to make a purchase while land is cheap(er) buys nearby land to build a school. Sometimes the developer will have a set aside/donation because having a new school accelerates lot sales.  Very few school districts in Texas zone for leveling socioeconomic disparities, probably less than five or six but it is one way that can keep neighborhoods active and regenerating because the schools can perform better when the student outcomes are not so one-sided. However, the charter schools have thrown a wrench into the works and that is a whole 'nother topic.

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26 minutes ago, fattyflattie said:

I don't believe this.  It can be a great investment.  It can also be stagnant af.  And now that the tax breaks are disappearing/tightened up, getting less and less attractive.

 

It can build wealth for someone in particular situations.  It's not for everyone.  But if you're stable in your career and location, and can plan/hope to stay in your house for 25 years, it's the way to go.   At the end of that 25 years, you're mortgage payment can be much lower than market rent.  

Not too mention that many soon-to-be retired people's net worth is also their home value.  And when I mean wealth, I didn't mean wealth to buy a yacht.

I'm arguing that working class people shouldn't extend themselves to buy a house unless they are in an extremely affordable market which means that they're also surrounded by people in the same economic shape.  I think small towns are the main area you find these neighborhoods.

 

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3 minutes ago, Nice Guy Eddie said:

It can build wealth for someone in particular situations.  It's not for everyone.  But if you're stable in your career and location, and can plan/hope to stay in your house for 25 years, it's the way to go.   At the end of that 25 years, you're mortgage payment can be much lower than market rent.  

Not too mention that many soon-to-be retired people's net worth is also their home value.  And when I mean wealth, I didn't mean wealth to buy a yacht.

I'm arguing that working class people shouldn't extend themselves to buy a house unless they are in an extremely affordable market which means that they're also surrounded by people in the same economic shape.  I think small towns are the main area you find these neighborhoods.

 

This makes sense. Our 'rent' in property taxes to the city is $400 a month because we bought a much smaller home than for what we qualified, paid it off early, and invested the savings and continue to invest the savings. A working class family may not be able to do that especially if they've had to scrape together the down payment (it took us awhile as well), but if they do the math and it isn't a stretch, that mortgage payment can help with stability. (rental income can go up therefore forcing a move which has its own costs etc) Property taxes can cause issues though. We've watched ours rise and rise and rise.

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1 hour ago, fattyflattie said:

you might have to give up the unlimited data plan and HBO off the satellite package to make it work

that saves like $25. 

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51 minutes ago, TwiceHorn said:

Houston and its inner suburbs, on the other hand, seems to be mostly disposable neighborhoods that go from a first generation of owners into renters and bare subsistence owners.  And the schools go down with it.

a lot of those neighborhoods have now gone through a regeneration process or are doing so right now.  that started in the late 90s or early 00s for the bits north of buffalo bayou and west of 45.  the process is moving east of 45 now.

as long as this city has  been growing there's been newer, bigger houses out west, and that matches really well with jobs also moving west (the energy corridor is 10-15 miles west of downtown).  so why buy old when you can buy new?  you're not really any further from your job if you're in the energy corridor. 

Edited by elfenix

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39 minutes ago, elfenix said:

as long as this city has  been growing there's been newer, bigger houses out west, and that matches really well with jobs also moving west (the energy corridor is 10-15 miles west of downtown).  so why buy old when you can buy new?  you're not really any further from your job if you're in the energy corridor. 

This is the same issue Dallas has with the rise of Plano/Frisco as it's own self-contained economic hub for jobs that lead to bedroom communities an hour away from downtown Dallas or Dallas proper.

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10 minutes ago, Biff Tannen said:

In before thread devolves into Dallas vs Houston.

Obviously Fort Worth is the best. Trust me I'm from Denton.

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3 hours ago, elfenix said:

that saves like $25. 

So 2 extra hours of work for the “working class”?   Hours that are sometimes hard to find? Maybe takes a bit off on the second job?  Maybe people who don’t have a pot to piss in shouldn’t care what’s happening in GoT, and worry about the next play is. 

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23 minutes ago, workswithseed said:

Obviously Fort Worth is the best. Trust me I'm from Denton.

You clearly haven't been to beautiful Mesquite.

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32 minutes ago, fattyflattie said:

So 2 extra hours of work for the “working class”?   Hours that are sometimes hard to find? Maybe takes a bit off on the second job?  Maybe people who don’t have a pot to piss in shouldn’t care what’s happening in GoT, and worry about the next play is. 

If HBO can keep you in every weekend, then it beats going out to a bar or movies in terms of cost.

Edited by Nice Guy Eddie

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3 minutes ago, Nice Guy Eddie said:

If HBO can keep you in every weekend, then it beats going out to a bar or movies in terms of cost.

I can’t argue with that. That’s what they make natty lights for. But I, from my limited experience with being “working class”, had to make some cuts.  Cable and bars were easy to cut, when not making rent is your other alternative.  
 

Working class people in small towns eeking out a living is a real issue. Them not being able to prioritize cable vs bar vs rent/house should not be. But it is, and is also a major factor of why they are in that situation to begin with. 

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1 hour ago, Biff Tannen said:

In before thread devolves into Dallas vs Houston.

Houston has poor people

Dallas has poor people who pretend they're rich

Edited by 52-80

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All this buying a house versus renting debate got me thinking about one of my favorite Dave Chappelle stand ups.

 

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