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Do DINKS rule the market?

Posted by Rona Fischman January 12, 2010 02:23 PM

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Twice in the past week or so, Iíve had initial conversations with would-be home buyers who are in a distinct minority. They feel disadvantaged in the marketplace. And they are. These would-be buyers are people with a single income and one or more children.

They do not fit in the category of SITKOM (Single Income Two Kids Outrageous Mortgage) because they do not have an outrageous mortgage and they wonít sign up for one. They stopped being DINKS (Double Income No Kids), when they became parents.

They are living in spaces that are too small. They have low expectations that they can rent suitable property. (Weíve talked about this before. And before that and before that and before that. If you donít believe me and the commenters, ask a friend who has children under six.)

Parents who donít have enough space and canít find a rental, think about buying. The yeses: Yes, prices are down. Yes, interest rates are low. Yes, there is a tax credit being dangled in front of their eyes. There are obvious reasons to say ďnoĒ to an outrageous mortgage.

Should they wait for prices to drop more? What if prices drop because interest rates have gone up? That makes outrageous mortgages more outrageous. And, as one of my would-be buyers pointed out in an email, the DINKS are always among us:

Our wish would be to stay around [deleted] but reality is that we are not sure that we will be able to swing it as we are competing with dinks that can and will outbid us every time. (BTW, that would be great blog topicócompetitive young couples with no kids vs. young families who cannot stretch as much anymore).

Are DINKS the enemy of young families?

Is there any hope that young families with one income can live in a good space without becoming house-poor? Are you in a single income family with children who has found a good rental or affordable purchase? Howíd you do it?

What should we call young families who pay a reasonable part of their monthly income on housing? OI, THIS: One Income, The House Is Small. OP ED: One Paycheck, Economic Diet (I bet you can do better!)

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Scott Van Voorhis is a freelance writer who specializes in real estate and business issues.

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