Oh, so that's why.
Listening to an interview with Nicole Gelinas about the changing habits of various generations. She's pretty sure that the era of flipping and HELOCs, the era of treating a house as a source of imaginary value, is finished. Safe prediction.**
That was never a conceivable option for me. A house was never a source of value or credit or profit, never a tax deduction. The sole purpose of ownership was to have a secure place to live,
a place that can't be taken away. If nominal "value" goes up, it only means higher property taxes, so I prefer a lower nominal "value". My only goal was to pay off the mortgage so I'd never have to worry again about missing payments, never worry about the landlord's knock at the door. I reached that payoff in 2006, and it has been every bit as satisfying
as I hoped it would be!
More broadly, the notion of selling a thing after you acquire it seems strange and even abhorrent, and I've only done it a few times with bicycles and cars. Never made a profit that way.
Thinking back, I realized: Selling things was an act of desperation
in the '70s when I was unemployed and completely broke. The bad taste continued through the years, even after I'd forgotten the original reason for the negativity.
= = = = =
** Footnote on 'safe prediction': The end of flipping is true nationally, but it doesn't apply in this part of Spokane. During the national boom years everything was sliding downward here, very little activity. Right now, just within my daily 5-block walk, I count 3 flips, 3 existing-owner remodels, and one brand new house under construction. As mentioned before,
something positive is happening quietly around here.
Probably no way to pin down the cause, but the area of newness appears to be 'propagating' from Wellesley, which was beautifully repaved and residewalked last year. This quarter of town has received lots of repaving and other attention during Verner's term as mayor. Before she took office the city mostly ignored the NW; now we have a number of fresh improvements, which may have spread the 'delta' of improvement to homeowners including me.
(Something like the opposite of the Broken Window Effect.)
Unfortunately Verner lost yesterday's election to a mindless Repooflican ZERO TAX hack named Condon.
So here's another safe prediction: Under Repooflican ZERO TAX hack Condon the city will go back to its old ways, pouring millions into the areas where rich dickheads build their McMansions and letting working-class areas rot. This is a sad day for most of Spokane.