Homes vs. real estate

When I was a teenager in the 1960s and looking forward to moving out on my own, my dad’s advice was that, in the long run, owning a house was better than paying rent year after year. It was a good investment, he said.

What he meant by that was that if and when I might sell my future home, due to job transfer or eventual need to move into a care facility, I’d be able to sell for more than I had paid, thereby having a financial cushion to see me through life’s transitions.

What he didn’t mean was that I should get into snapping up properties, doing a few renovations, and making a nice profit. He didn’t mean I should become a landlord and jack up rents to the highest the market might allow. He didn’t mean I should own two or three or four properties and leave some sitting empty much of the time.

I don’t know if he foresaw the societal damage that would be done by today’s real estate practices where some folks get quite rich, but a whole bunch of folks find themselves unable to afford a place to live. It’s a sad picture.

I attended Kate White’s constituency meeting last week, and the entire group expressed anguish about the issues of homelessness and lack of affordable housing. There are actions governments can take to help, and I encourage our representatives to stay focused on solutions.

As well, we citizens need to examine our priorities. Are we more concerned about property values or about meeting basic human needs? Are we more interested in the luxury of owning our own vacation home or in the ability of others to survive? Do we dream of ourselves living in mansions, or are we satisfied with having enough? What’s more essential to happiness, having real estate or having a home?

Dianne Homan

Whitehorse

affordable housing

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Beringia Centre to roll out summer Science Talks series

The first talk, to be streamed on Facebook Live, will be from Yukon palaeontologist Grant Zazula

Ninjas in the Yukon

Yukoners deliver goodies

Yukon government approached Salvation Army about ARC land sale, records show

“YG approached SA first and they have been receptive throughout”

Canada Games Centre to reopen sometime in June

First phase will be limited to track, wellness centre, flexihall and some fitness classes

Contract awarded for mixed-income housing project

The Yukon government has awarded a $16.8-million contract to build the mixed-income… Continue reading

Watson Lake man charged with gun offences after break-and-enter

Alfred Magun, 60, was arrested and charged with eight offences

Top of the World Highway border crossings remain closed

The Little Gold Creek and Poker Creek border crossings will remain closed… Continue reading

Gymnasts return to Polarettes

Club reopens, summer camps also approved

Yukon College becomes Yukon University

Yukon College has officially become Yukon University, or “YukonU.” The post-secondary institution… Continue reading

Mushroom pickers in Snag area asked to register with First Nation

“We want to ensure that our land, water, and people are respected during this season”

Today’s mailbox: Healthcare, COVID-19 and taxes

Letters to the editor published May 22

Yukon Teachers’ Association elects new president

Holy Family Elementary School principal Ted Hupé has been elected president of… Continue reading

Most Read