Despite all the emphasis on owning a home as the American Dream, renting is better for the poor, according to a Rutgers University economist.

The reason, renting is flexible. A lease is over in a year and some families have month-to-month tenancies. A family can move up or down in the rent ladder as it needs to, depending on its financial circumstances.

Homeownership, in contrast, is inflexable. The mortgage payments, taxes and insurance are all fairly fixed. When tough economic times come along, home-owning families get pinched by these high fixed costs.

The current financial crisis was caused by owner-extended homeowners who went into foreclosure. But the government programs has not adjusted its policies to reflect the hazzards of homeownership. Government programs have been established to adjust mortgage payments to help keep people in their homes. These programs however, may be misguided. A significant portion of families who have their mortgage adjusted still end up in foreclosure. The burden of homeownership is just too great.

Even if foreclosure is averted, the problem I see of low-income Americans is that all their possible savings are absorbed by the financial demands of homeownership. Other savings goals – such as saving for children’s higher education or for retirement – well, get ignored.

The ultimate goal is not the American Dream of homeownership, that this Rutgers economist suggests, but the upward mobility for a family and its children. In this view, I agree, renting is not just only okay, its downright beneficial.

Source: Rutgers University economist.”>WSJ and SPOA

Author Profile

John Ford
John Ford

Over the course of 20 years in the Boston downtown real estate market, John represented and sold numerous, condominiums, investment and development properties in Greater Boston and in the surrounding suburbs

In addition to representing Boston condo buyers and sellers, John is currently one of the most recognized Boston condo blog writers regarding Boston condominiums and residential real estate markets. John's insights and observations about the Boston condo market have been seen in a wide variety of the most established local & national media outlets including; Banker and Tradesman, Boston Magazine The Boston Globe, The Boston Herald and NewsWeek and Fortune magazine, among others.


For over 24 years, John Ford, of Ford Realty Inc., has been actively involved in the real estate industry. He started his career in commercial real estate with a national firm Spaulding & Slye and quickly realized that he had a passion for residential properties. In 1999, John entered the residential real estate market, and in 2000 John Started his own firm Ford Realty Inc. As a broker, his clients have come to love his fun, vivacious, and friendly attitude. He prides himself on bringing honesty and integrity to the entire home buying and selling process. In addition to helping buyers and sellers, he also works with rental clients. Whether you’re looking to purchase a new Boston condo or rent an apartment, you’ll quickly learn why John has a 97% closing rate.


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John Ford and his staff can be reached at 617-595-3712 or 617-720-5454. Please feel free to stop by John's Boston Beacon Hill office located at 137 Charles Street.

John Ford
Ford Realty Inc
137 Charles Street
Boston, Ma 02114



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