Housing loses its investment allure
The housing market has not recovered, and may not ever return to its glory days.
A new reality is setting in for homeowners: A house will not make you money.
We're in a vastly different world from what we saw over the last three decades, when real home prices increased every year -- sometimes by as much as 4%, The New York Times reports.
That kind of appreciation made housing seem like a smart investment. A nest egg that would make money. Now, and for the foreseeable future, you'll be lucky just to get back the money you put into your house.
"People shouldn’t look at a home as a way to make money because it won’t," one economic researcher told the Times.
Experts tell the Times that now the housing market will likely only keep up with inflation, instead of beating it. And long term, the market will probably never recover the trillions of dollars in value lost over the last few years.
That's a huge change from the way things used to be. Not so long ago, people would buy a home and expect it to balloon in value, clearing the way for them to cash out, snag a better home and climb the housing ladder.
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How do you recover from this? Some economists are more optimistic. "You have to live somewhere," one economist told the Times. "In three or four years, people will resume a normal course, and home values will continue to increase."
Still other experts said the recovery may begin in some parts of the country, while others -- such as Arizona -- don't have enough demand to recover for decades.
More from MSN Money:
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- 5 first-time homebuyers' biggest surprises
- Middle-of-nowhere mansions
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