I Don't Get This: On Helens Pouroff Ave., escaping falling home prices | USATODAY.com


This article on USAToday.com is only one of many which I’ve read over the past few years which explain how people who are “under water” in their mortgages are defaulting on them.

What I absolutely don’t get is why people are defaulting to get out of their mortgages. The sudden realization that your house’s value is less than what you owe shouldn’t keep you from liking the house you loved when you signed on the dotted line. Heck, if that were the criteria for defaulting on a loan, you’d drive that new car off the lot, promptly park it on the street, leave the keys on the seat, and never make the first payment!

Why is your house different, then? A few years ago, it was the best house you ever saw. You thought it was worth that much then. So why isn’t it worth that much to you now?Why is your opinion so easily swayed? Some assessor comes along and says “Your house is worth half of what it used to be.”

Your answer should be So? and not Oh, gosh! I will default and ruin my credit rating because he says my house isn’t worth as much as I thought it is! Instead, you should hold on because, Guess what? The market is cyclic and it just might be worth more some day down the road. And it might not.

Unless you’re selling your house today, right now, it doesn’t matter how much it’s worth. It’s four walls and a roof. It’s the place you sleep. It’s the place your kids grow in. It’s the place memories are made. It’s a home, not a figure on a piece of paper.

To be absolutely clear here: There is not a single investment which is guaranteed to gain or maintain its value. Not one. Not a CD, not a bond, not a car, not an antique, not land. Nothing.

Not even your house.

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