the true nature of housing prices. It’s not about the house, it’s about the location. Housing prices rise where more people want to move, but not enough houses are built to accommodate them. Aggregate housing prices do not rise because everyone’s retiling their bathrooms. They rise because the new demand outstrips the supply.

The current regime of “housing as an investment” rests on the idea that rising housing prices are good, because they generate wealth. And sure, a homeowner whose house value is rising fast enough is getting wealthier.

But it’s a fake version of wealth generation. The majority of the higher value comes from demand outstripping supply. Little actual value is being created, only transferred. Those who own houses gain wealth at the expense of the people who don’t, either through higher prices when buying or renting.

Maybe Treating Housing as an Investment was a Colossal, Society-Shattering Mistake
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