Housing

To The Economist: Planning, Not Home Ownership, Caused the Housing Crisis

economist-housing-cover.jpg

The January 16, 2020 cover story in The Economist magazine trumpeted “The West’s biggest economic policy mistake: It’s obsession with homeownership undermines growth, fairness and public faith in capitalism. “The Economist explains:  read more »

Make America Affordable Again

make-housing-affordable_otoole.png

The Department of Housing and Urban Development has asked for comments on eliminating regulatory barriers to affordable housing. This is my response.  read more »

Home Ownership: Cornerstone of Singapore’s Housing Policy

Singapore_Central_Business_District_viewed_from_UOB_Plaza_2.jpg

The following is the Introduction to the 16th Annual Demographia International Housing Affordability Survey, which rates housing affordability in more than 300 metropolitan markets in eight nations in the third quarter of 2019. This Introduction relies on Internet and academic sources and information from the Housing and Development Board (HDB) of Singapore.  read more »

Subjects:

SB50: the More Real Estate Speculation and Free Air Rights Bill

new-housing-eglin-AFbase.jpg

SB50, the controversial Sacramento bill that would take zoning rights away from local communities, has been dubbed by its author, San Francisco State Senator Scott Wiener, as the “more homes” bill, but it would be much more appropriate to title it the “More Real Estate Speculation and Free Air Rights Bill.”  read more »

Sydney High-Density Planning

Clifftop_hilly_homes_in_Vaucluse_eastern_suburbs_Sydney_Australia.jpg

High-density planning policies have become fashionable and Sydney planners are among the most enthusiastic adopters. New South Wales Government authorities claim that high density policies result in a reduction of greenhouse gas emissions (gge), provide improved housing affordability and result in reduced traffic congestion. No evidence has been provided to justify these assertions. Such claims need to be investigated as well as density’s detrimental effect on amenity and quality of life should also be investigated.  read more »

Houston Is Now Less Affordable Than New York City?!

cox-houston.jpg

"There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics." -Mark Twain  read more »

Standard of Living Crisis Evident in New Demographia International Housing Affordability Survey

dhi16residential.jpg

One of the principal advances of the past two centuries has been the drastic reduction in poverty and the rise of a large middle-class, a process expertly detailed by economists Diedre McClosky and Robert Gordon.  read more »

California's Inept Central Planners

Sacramento_Capitol_2013.jpg

Gov. Gavin Newsom, the Legislature and the state’s bureaucracy claim to be addressing the state’s much discussed “housing crisis.” But rather than improve the state’s awful affordability crisis, the policies being enacted are precisely the wrong medicine, more akin to witch-doctoring than a scientific curative.  read more »

The Golden Horseshoe

goldenhorseshoe_lead.jpg

I’ve been having an ongoing series of conversations with my young friend Gracen up in Toronto about how to make sense of the Canadian real estate market. We see each other a few times a year as we both travel around North America.  read more »

Afterburn

rural-house.jpg

Here in California we’ve just received our first rain since last winter after another brutal round of massive forest fires. Our Mediterranean style climate cycles from a long dry hot period to a few short cool wet winter months. October is our most fire prone time of year. It’s hot, the earth is bone dry, the vegetation is brittle, and windstorms stir up fires like a giant hair dryer. Cyclical burns are part of the ecosystem here and are normal and necessary.  read more »