Housing never goes down - emailed to subscribers - Mon, 21 Mar 2005

This was passed on to me from the elliottwave web site, as recently posted, by one of those in attendance at the recent ataa talk


posted: 5:00 PM ET March 16, 2005

Have you heard? Now you can pay off your mortgage, buy a duplex to rent, retire, and travel cross-country in a brand-new motor home, all in less than 60… /minutes --/thanks to CashFlow, the board game that uses play money to teach adults about real-world investing.

Talk about putting the fun back in /funance./ And, as any member of one of the 800 CashFlow Clubs around the world will tell you, the vicarious thrill of winning (fair and square) the American Dream can’t be beat.

Unless, of course, the Dream came true.

Which brings us to a March 14 /CNN/ Money report on one New York City-based CashFlow Club’s decision to /“turn the game about getting rich into a game plan for getting rich.”/

The time is right, claim the group’s members, to roll the dice in the real-world real estate market. They’ve come together to put down the playing cards and /“pick up the name of a good contractor, the number of a trusted real estate lawyer, or to offer cash, credit or time as one member of a real estate partnership.”/

In other words, relative strangers are partnering up to place their combined capital in property based on the experience they gained and lessons they learned from playing a board game.

What’s next -- People buying hotel chains because they kicked butt in a few rounds of Monopoly?

But as crazy as this may sound, many experts claim that in the game of real estate, there is no losing.

Take, for example, the March 12 testimony by a chief economist for the National Association of Realtors:

/“The US housing boom should continue for at least another decade… Thankfully, American’s are ignoring warnings of a [housing bust] and investing in real estate in droves.”/ Those who say the /“sky is falling are trying to compare real estate to stocks, but it’s apples and oranges. Stocks are, by their very nature, speculative. Real estate is more long term.”/

Exactly. If the housing bubble bursts, you can’t just pick up the phone and sell your real estate investment, as you could shares of a falling stock. You first have to find a buyer.

This brings to mind another board game by a different name: RISK. And, over the past few years, the degree of risk relevant to the HOME sweet home sector has soared sweet soared: Once merely a place to live, it’s now --

  • A place to earn a living: In 2004, 25% of the 7.7 million homes sold were purchased strictly as investments. AND

  • A way to ensure a livelihood: A March 15 /Associated Press/ article points out “/of the 243,000 net private payroll jobs added by California’s economy in the last two year, 122,000 of them were directly related to the real estate sector… The job gains over the past year reflect not an economy in the midst of a true recovery, but an economy still in the midst of a real-estate-fueled spending binge.”/

With so much resting on the rooftop of the real-estate sector, the name of the game should be clear, objective analysis of the true strength in U.S. housing prices.

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