…t homes. However, the choice starts much earlier than most of us begin thinking about family plans. Taking on huge amounts of student debt and spending frivolously in our single years sets us up to have little savings and lots of debt in our 30’s when we’re trying to raise a family. A sense of entitlement that comes with our higher degrees means we get a bigger mortgage than we can comfortably afford and cars that are worth less than we owe on them. So yes, I suppose it is about survival, but it is based on a series of impulsive choices that we’ve…
Congratulations on paying off your mortgage just before your 30th birthday. When did you buy the house? If you were lucky enough to buy after 2009, you enjoyed a huge windfall. If you bought before 2008, you might still be underwater on your house.
You’re right about the difference in life styles in the 50s and 60s. There are a lot of differences.
But your statement also reeks with false judgments. I don’t know many of my son’s friends who were spending “frivolously” after they graduated college. Most of them struggled to find work after the 2009 financial meltdown. As far as a sense of “entitlement,” I’m not sure any of them were buying houses since they were still living in their parents’ houses.
College debt is a huge problem that did not exist in the days when our society valued an educated population. UCLA cost $56 per year for tuition in 1946. That rose to $1500 per year in 1973. Now, it’s closer to $10,000. And that is the resident cost for a public university. Add books, and living expenses and it’s around $25,000. If you’re an out of state student or go to a private school, those costs explode.
It’s definitely easier to survive on one income if you don’t live near the largest and most expensive cities. But paying off college debt, saving for a down payment, paying rent, car insurance, health insurance, utilities, phone, food, etc. is a lot harder now than it was in the past.
From Fortune magazine:
Adding fuel to this worrying fire is a report released Monday from Zillow, which showed that first-time home buyers are waiting longer than ever — six years — to make the move from renting to owning. Zillow Chief Economist Svenja Gudell attributed this problem to the fact that young people are struggling to “save for a down payment and qualify for a mortgage, especially while the rental market is so unaffordable all over the country.”