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39131 No. 39131 [Edit]
So a lot of people have been talking about the unreasonably high cost of rent and housing lately, and it's certainly an issue. Prices are skyrocketing across the board with pay not really changing. we're seeing 400-500k for houses in many parts.
We got fucked over pretty hard by it and forced to move to a location we 100% weren't planning to, but the town we moved to actually isn't 'that' bad and our house is paid off. This has made me realize something.
There's still tons of affordable housing around the world, but all this over priced to hell housing is located in big cities. These cities tend to be dirty dangerous loud smelly crime ridden hellholes full of horrible people in an all around shitty local culture. The bigger the city is, the worse these problems get, and the more expensive they become to live in on top of that. Am I the only one who thinks it's weird to pay more to live in a worse place?

I grew up in a town that started off fairly quite and peaceful, that over the years grew quickly in population. Crime rates escalated with the number of people moving in. Traffic became unbearable, the streets became flooded with litter, businesses started going under. I've had my car and home broken into multiple times. I've been robbed and I've had my property vandalized, seen decent people I knew in school grow to become degenerate human garbage. You would think property values would fall because of this, but they actually rose. They didn't rise as much as neighboring cities, but they still rose never the less.
We left and traveled the country last year, exploring everything from big cites to small towns and everything between. During my short time in Vegas I received a death threat from one stranger and another threated to take me outside and "fuck me up", neither of these men I had even said a word to. Now here I am in a small town where the homeless are a rare sight, houses range from 40k to 120k, and I don't see security posted at every single business. Jobs here pay less than where I cam from, but then that brings me to the point of this post. Does it really make any sense to live in a place where housing costs 5x as much, just so you can have a job there that pays 1.5x more, maaaaybe 2x more? Would you rather get paid $10 an hour and pay $500 a month in rent/mortgage ($6000 a year), or get paid $15 an hour and pay $1500 a month? (18,000 a year)
Before taxes, 10 an hour for 40 hours a week is $19200 a year, and if you deduct $6000 a year for rent from that you're left with $13200. $15 an hour meanwhile is $28,800 a year, with 10800 left over if you deduct the 18,000 a year for rent. That's a difference of $2,400 a year in favor of the person making less money! And that's not even taking into account other things like bills which cost more in big cities, or of course the risk you take of getting mugged. If you work remotely, why in the hell would you choose to live in a big city?? Sure there's more shops and things to do, but is that convenience really worth all the downsides when you can just take a trip every so often to the city instead?
>> No. 39133 [Edit]
That's always been the case. I'm not American but Australia is very similar in many ways, sometimes you see the media or whatever making a fuss about a standard 3 bedroom suburban house selling for over a million dollars and they say how bad this is while ignoring the fact that this was a suburban house in the CBD! All of these hugely expensive houses either are in the CBD or very close to it. It's all about location. But if you are willing to spend half an hour driving to work you could find the same house or better for 300K.

But also even in the suburbs of the city it depends on what suburb you are talking about. You mention crime and such but that is a poor person issue, so for my city if you wanted to spend 10 minutes driving to work instead of 30 you could spend 300k or less on a new suburban house in one of the bad suburbs or you could spend one million or more for the same house in one of the good ones, even though they are the same distance from the CBD. Personally I would never live in a poor person area. Often there isn't a choice regarding work, pretty much all of the best jobs are in the city, that's where the money is and it's where most businesses, universities and government institutions base themselves.

However, as the population grows people move outwards and that drives up house prices as well. The country town I live in and the one next door are both exploding. This town had 16,000 people in 2016, I would not be surprised if it has 30,000 now. If you look at it on google maps the size has doubled or more with new houses that are all packed much closer together and the town grows so fast that what google maps shows you is made out of date very fast. The people in the town are changing too, I went to the shops today and they were filled with poor people, there were tattoos, piercings and dyed hair everywhere. It's really worrying, it used to be the perfect town, big enough that it had most shops and services but small enough that it didn't have many poor people, close enough that you could drive to the city in half an hour but far enough away that it was mostly surrounded by farmland. Now that is all changing and it's ruined. I don't know where I will live in the future.
>> No. 39135 [Edit]
I live in a big city and it's not something I ever wanted, it's not like people are dumb and preffer to live in expensive and crowded places just because shops and shit, I myself don't go outside my apartment unless it's strictly necessary. Here the choice isn't between low salaries and high salaries, but between having a salary or not having any at all. It's quite hard to find a job outside big cities, and in most little towns you can't get a job unless you're "connected", so if you're an antisocial fuck up like me you're not gonna work there, and if you're lucky and somehow, someone does you the favour of hiring you, the conditions can be awful since "work ethics" are quite different in the country, there's no concept of labor rights and things are more like a 100 years ago. There's at least one nice thing about big cities and is being completely anonymous, so you have more chances for survival compared to anyone else.
>> No. 39136 [Edit]
That's a good point, it's easy to forget how tight nit smaller communities are. and sorry you got stuck in a place like that.

>a poor person issue
I lived on what eventually became a very busy street at one point, and that came with a ton of issues. We moved not that far and suddenly things became more peaceful. The city didn't change, the problems were still there, all we did was momentary side step them. They were still noticeable everywhere we went. As the problem grew it became harder to avoid them, even when going to formerly nicer areas.
They say you can't pick your neighbors. You can live in a decent area, but all it takes is for one bad person to get a lone, and they can quickly start to drive away decent residents in the area while lowering property values and attracting more of their kind. They're like a virus that can strike almost anywhere.
Besides, I've noticed places with money actually can attract poor people. Sure it pushes away the type who can't afford to live there honestly so they move on, but it attracts the people who beg for money on the streets, live off the scraps of the rich, and see easy targets for theft.
It seems to me if you live in a big wealthy city, you have to constantly swim around the shit. If you're wealthy enough you can put up barriers, gates for your community, security for your building, ect, but unless you're ridding helicopters from roof top to roof top, eventually you would still have to navigate the city streets wouldn't you?
>> No. 39137 [Edit]
In the city itself yes but not in the rich suburbs I am talking about. It would be difficult for people to do any of that in rich suburbs. I would never want to live in a city.
>> No. 39141 [Edit]
For bay area in particular, it's pretty insane what people are willing to put up with just to be proximally close to tech companies. As you mentioned with the rise of remote work any logical justification behind this state of things is gone, and indeed I do expect that the "bay area" will no longer be the technological hot spot it once was in 5-10 years time.

But the damage is already done. SF is an utter shithole, and I'm pretty sure a 3rd world country would be more habitable. The related issue is that housing is treated as both an investment and shelter, and in particular we have no problem letting rich foreigners buy up land just to rent it out (I recall this was a particular problem in Canada)
>> No. 39466 [Edit]
I had a look at the house prices in my state in Australia and the cheapest I could find was a derelict shack in the middle of nowhere for $40 000. I don't think house prices are that cheap here.
>> No. 39469 [Edit]
It depends on what you mean by cheap. I was referring to around 300k-400k. 40k is about the cost of a new car these days, of course you won't find a house for that much.
>> No. 39656 [Edit]
I learned that the house we sold near the start of covid is, at least according to zillow, estimated to be worth around $100k more than what we sold it for.
At the same time, I hear the town it's in has only gotten worse since we left. It's bizarre to me that crime/culture wise it's going the way of East LA, but with housing prices skyrocketing like that. It's not like there's any jobs there either. Businesses were and apparently still are closing down due to all the vandalism. The numbers really don't make much sense.
>> No. 39657 [Edit]
I think investors are pushing up prices by buying up literally any property way above what a private homeowner could afford for what it is.
>> No. 39661 [Edit]
Institutional investors are a part of it (see the whole zillow automated home-flipping thing) but also note that "investors" here can also be individual investors, usually those who got in early during "cheap money", rented it out, and then used the surging profit from the rent to rinse and repeat. (In California the property tax grandfathering makes this uniquely profitable in a way that I think others states don't allow).

Hopefully the rising interest rates will correct things a bit, but from what I've read there still genuinely is an issue of demand exceeding supply in most urban areas, so I don't think it will completely go back.
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