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"Poor" if you can't afford more than $250,000?

Posted by Scott Van Voorhis May 9, 2013 07:22 AM

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That anyone who can't afford to spring more than a quarter million on a home would be considered poor - or worse, some sort of deadbeat - is completely nuts. And while we are at it, stomach churning as well.

But sadly that is what things have come to in perpetually price inflated Greater Boston, where prices never really go down.

Just witness the backlash that typically developers face who try and build new developments in upscale suburbs within 495 that include homes in more modest price ranges.

If some of those homes are, say, within the $175,000 to $250,000 range, woe to the builder, who will be inevitably accused of bringing down the neighborhood.

No matter that you would need to be making $50,000 to $75,000 a year to make the payments.

"Yes, we are housing snobs," wrote "Dr. Doofenschmirtz" in the comments section on a recent post of mine on whether New England is a hotbed for housing snobs."There are strict zoning laws which in affect allow only "well bred and accomplished people" in our neighborhoods. That is fact of life."

Here's more of the good doctor's diagnosis. In my expert opinion, he's right on target!

Here goes:

My town has at least 5-10 homes being built at any time, always for very well off. Miraculously there is always enough space. Anything for people in 200-450K range is being fought tooth and nail, and otherwise liberal, and well educated people start spewing all sorts of nonsense. Fact that someone who is making 50K-80K a year and can not afford more than 225K-250K home is deemed "poor" and often an undesirable neighbor, is supreme proof that most of us live in the big bubble, and are becoming quite hysterical about our home values. I am not even go into moral implication of such attitudes.

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

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