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For some people it can be an investment, but a very long term one. Case in point - my parents' bought a house in 1968 for 18K. Even in this horrid market, they could sell it, as is with the minimal stuff they've done (mainly upkeep), for close to 800K.
Our house has been a money pit and our local market sucks. So we're not seeing any return like that, even in 40+ years.
I like the idea of owning because you have control and over time it CAN be an investment, but like all investments, there's a risk of loss.
Mine is an investment even though it is depriciating like everyone else. But the difference is there is no morgage and thus no interest. We would still need a place to live. So let us say it was $500/month or $6k per year even dropping in value from $70 to $52K (per zillow versus Spokeo valuing it at $64,500) We have lived her five years so there is $30K in rent/housing we did not to pay.
At this point I would not get a morgage unless I could pay a heafty down payment.
Sure it is! An investment is something that has the potential to turn a profit. A lot of things won't in the long run, but that doesn't mean it didn't have the potential to do so.
In our current housing market, most people who have bought in the last 15-20 years are not seeing a profit if they tried to sell today. But in that 15-20 years, there was most likely some point in time that they could have made a profit if they sold.
This Sept will mark 10 years of being in our home. At the highest point, we probably could have sold for about $50K over what we paid, but now at a fairly low point, we'd get about $30K under what we paid.
Kris that isn't to bad really in this market. Not that anyone wants to lose money but I know for us we are about $100K upside down and it stinks. Luckily we don't have plans or a need to move anytime soon.
I do know some people are letting their houses go (foreclosure) because they see it as a bad investment and they want to wash their hands of it. Hence why I wondered about homes being an investment.