It was interesting frightening to watch Bursting the Bubble on Insight tonight. I still can’t get over how much debt Australians have taken on; Insight mentioned that we as individuals have seven times greater debt than during the recession in the early nineties: scary!
I read a lot about housing unaffordability in Australia and I have read lots of stories about Australian families who have bought overpriced housing (what housing isn’t overpriced) because of the alleged security that a house provides.
The one thing that Insight successfully showed tonight is that an expensive house with a large mortgage doesn’t actually provide security at all, it just quite the opposite. How can any person with a large mortgage requiring multiple incomes and uninterrupted employment just to service the debt at current interest rate levels feel any bit secure? Isn’t that what security is about, feeling secure?
I would feel insecure with a mortgage large enough to pay for the apartment we rent. I would feel insecure buying any apartment in Brisbane at the moment knowing that we would need two full times jobs for 30 years just to service the debt. I feel secure renting a place knowing that we have a few years rent in savings in case something goes wrong. I feel secure knowing that I could quit my job tomorrow and we could still easily afford rent and living expenses from just one salary. Now that’s security.