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Re: American workers are finding it harder to save for retirement !
Old 01-17-2007, 07:20 PM   #61
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Re: American workers are finding it harder to save for retirement !

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Originally Posted by LOL!
All old homes that we see around are well built. But it's not a function of the decade or era ... it's just survivorship bias. All the crappy homes built in the 20's, 30's, 40's have long since fallen down and/or been demolished. Only the well-built ones are left.
An excellent point!


By the same token however, I have a very hard time beleiving that *any* of the houses in the huge tracts in Florida (kissimmee/orlando area for example), will be around in 75 years....the workmanship just isn't there.

Guess we are already moving towards a planned obsolence model for houses like we have already for cars...
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Re: American workers are finding it harder to save for retirement !
Old 01-17-2007, 09:11 PM   #62
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Re: American workers are finding it harder to save for retirement !

Quote:
Originally Posted by LOL!
All old homes that we see around are well built. But it's not a function of the decade or era ... it's just survivorship bias. All the crappy homes built in the 20's, 30's, 40's have long since fallen down and/or been demolished. Only the well-built ones are left..
LOL -- thx, I think you're on to something. Of course there must have been plenty of dumpy houses built, and like lousy mutual funds, we just don't hear about them anymore...
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Re: American workers are finding it harder to save for retirement !
Old 01-18-2007, 09:10 AM   #63
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Re: American workers are finding it harder to save for retirement !

All old homes that we see around are well built. But it's not a function of the decade or era ... it's just survivorship bias. All the crappy homes built in the 20's, 30's, 40's have long since fallen down and/or been demolished. Only the well-built ones are left.

I think two very important factors here are land values and maintenance. There are plenty of old homes where I live, some dating back to the 1800's, and built in varying degrees of quality. Those that have been taken care of show it, as do those that haven't. About the only time an old house has been demolished around here, in my memory, would be to make way for a road, or if it was on a farm that got sold to developers, or something happened to make it burn down.

There are a lot of Sears & Roebuck homes in my area, built in the 1920's. They were just mass-produced kit homes, meant to be affordable, entry-level housing, but they've all seemed to have survived. I think in many cases, older homes look higher-quality because back then they didn't always have some of the money and time-saving materials of today. They didn't have sheetrock back in the old days. They used plaster. As a result, you didn't have the sloppy seams that often show up today. Of course, you had cracks and repairs in the plaster, but somehow those would often help to give the wall a nostalgic charm to it. And houses back then often had hardwood floors, and plenty of fancy wood moldings around the doors, windows, and other nooks and crannies. Not necessarily because they were better-built, but because that's what was available. Wall-to-wall carpeting wasn't fashionable yet, so at best you probably had area rugs. And other materials, such as pergo, vinyl flooring, rubber moldings, plastic by-products, etc, weren't available yet. Lumber tended to be thicker back then, simply because plywood hadn't been invented yet, and they tended to use studs, joists, and rafters that weren't dressed.

This was before I was born, but back the early 60's, Levitt and Sons put Bowie, Maryland on the map with mass-produced housing. I've heard older people carry on about how poorly those things were built, and how they were considered cheap housing at the time. A lot of it had to do with the fact that they were built on slabs and didn't have basements, and they used roof trusses, which limited the usefulness of the attic. And they just put the things up so damned fast! But fast forward to today, and people talk about how well-built they are, and how they just don't make 'em like they used to!
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Re: American workers are finding it harder to save for retirement !
Old 01-18-2007, 10:48 AM   #64
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Re: American workers are finding it harder to save for retirement !

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I think the big inflation discount comes in your later years. My older friends that are 70 plus - Do not even want a computer or a cell phone or a flat panel TV.
They dont want them because they didnt have them 20 years ago.

We'll want them.
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Re: American workers are finding it harder to save for retirement !
Old 01-18-2007, 11:08 AM   #65
 
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Re: American workers are finding it harder to save for retirement !

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They dont want them because they didnt have them 20 years ago.

We'll want them.
That is what I mean! - They'll be cheap because they've been around for 20 years by then.

We won't want the new stuff, because we'll be old foggies by then!
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Re: American workers are finding it harder to save for retirement !
Old 01-18-2007, 11:58 AM   #66
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Re: American workers are finding it harder to save for retirement !

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Originally Posted by Cut-Throat
That is what I mean! - They'll be cheap because they've been around for 20 years by then.

We won't want the new stuff, because we'll be old foggies by then!
Nah. Dennis Hopper has it right, we will want to try all the new stuff. Better figure it into your expense rate.
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Re: American workers are finding it harder to save for retirement !
Old 01-18-2007, 12:31 PM   #67
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Re: American workers are finding it harder to save for retirement !

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Originally Posted by Andre1969
This was before I was born, but back the early 60's, Levitt and Sons put Bowie, Maryland on the map with mass-produced housing. I've heard older people carry on about how poorly those things were built, and how they were considered cheap housing at the time. A lot of it had to do with the fact that they were built on slabs and didn't have basements, and they used roof trusses, which limited the usefulness of the attic. And they just put the things up so damned fast! But fast forward to today, and people talk about how well-built they are, and how they just don't make 'em like they used to!
My FIL bought one of those on Manship Lane in 1964. He still has the mortgage contract-- a piece of 5"x8" pasteboard folded into four front&back pages. We've heard the stories hundreds of times... $17K financed at 5.5% with payments of $88.00/month!
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Re: American workers are finding it harder to save for retirement !
Old 01-23-2007, 02:05 PM   #68
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Re: American workers are finding it harder to save for retirement !

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Originally Posted by Cut-Throat
That is what I mean! - They'll be cheap because they've been around for 20 years by then.

We won't want the new stuff, because we'll be old foggies by then!
Dont be so sure. The tv I really want always costs over two grand and the computer I really want always costs more than a grand.

My dad has a big screen tv, tivo, cd and dvd players, netflix and a bunch of other similar stuff.

Roll back 20 years and ask him if he'd really be interested in any of this stuff. Answer is probably "no!"
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