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The Housing Crisis Is Breaking People’s Brains

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asomeone who has been It’s a silly repetitive battle and I know the whole problem can be solved if everyone can agree exactly what you said or didHowever, not being able to do so leads to a cycle of re-litigation. The housing policy debate is like that. They get into a heated altercation because even basic facts are arguable.

The most basic fact about the housing crisis is the lack of supply.yet many Man rejection this reality. Before we get to a true research library, our personal experience forces us to recognize that there is a housing shortage all around us.The most dire sign of a shortage is when even wealthy people struggle to find homes. Hundreds of yuppies line up to tour a single Manhattan apartment Or a realtor’s story bouncer These vivid examples show that demand far exceeds supply.

Accepting the existence of a housing shortage, the obvious policy response is to build more homes.look and study San Francisco, New York, BostonWhen 52,000 residents in 12 metropolitan areas in the United States We’ve all found that new homes drive prices down. This survey is intuitive. When new housing is built, most of the first movers move out. other unit. These units will be made available to newcomers.Solving the supply problem, of course Harder Rather than having the number of homes equal the population (people need different types of homes), the basic point is that people need more homes near good jobs and schools so that people can It’s about giving people access to the communities and amenities that make their lives better. fun.

Despite an avalanche of consensus from experts, the public still doubts cause and effect.a new research According to three University of California professors (Clayton Nall, Chris Elmendorf, and Stan Oklobdzija), it has become clear that scarcity denialism is not the only lack of “shared facts” that plagues housing discourse. rice field.The researchers conducted two national surveys of urban and suburban residents and found that between 30% and 40% of Americans believed in themselves “contrary to basic economic theory and solid empirical evidence.” If many new houses were built in our area, rents and housing prices would increase by rise. This posture “Supply skepticism.”

The scarcity denial I observed in my own reports and the supply skepticism revealed by these researchers through their survey data are related phenomena. Not only are they wrong, they are also wrong in the same direction. They are against the real solution to the housing crisis: building enough homes.After all, if there’s no shortage, or if building a new house doesn’t lower the rent, no one needs to work NIMBYismIn fact, according to this magical idea, the housing crisis could be solved without changing anything. You can.

strange thing About supply skepticism is that it appears to be limited to housing. UC researchers also asked about increases in automobiles, grain, plumbers, and trade in general. Supply skepticism was significantly lower for these categories than for housing. For example, 85% of the respondents said that when there is a problem in his chain of automotive supply, the price of used cars will increase. Far fewer than half of respondents could apply this same logic to the housing market.

Why are the residences different? Probably because the supply argument seems to run counter to actual experience. People look around their communities and see many changes. They are seeing new housing and developments taking place even as prices continue to rise. You start to think that nothing helps.or worse, the price will actually go up.

UC researchers say, “The public tends to personalize and moralize economic phenomena.”Furthermore, they argue that our brains have evolved to engage in cooperative behavior in small groups, so people are more focused on “intention and effort detection, and turncoat policing” than “system-level thinking.” This prejudice explains why many Americans believe that inflation is the result of a lack of supply of the same goods and services. You can explain why you believe it was the result of price hikes by greedy private corporations, rather than a sharp increase in demand. Or, more closely, why so many Americans We believe private equity is the main cause of the housing crisis Only developers (despite owning a tiny share of America’s housing stock) or would benefit if they reduced the barriers to building new homes. Cold-hearted figures such as developers are easily incorporated into simple narratives of good and evil. Even more difficult is conceptualizing the networks of regulations, norms, and incentives that led to a supply problem with no apparent villain. (It’s even harder to recognize the complicity of sympathetic actors like homeowners getting in the way of coveted housing.)

Another factor behind scarcity denial and supply skepticism can be motivated reasoning. Both stem from a desire to reject necessary policy solutions. Building millions of homes is destructive. That means a lot of changes in the built environment, acceptance, construction and construction of multi-family homes in more areas. Some people dislike large-scale construction because his intuition about density is split in two. It’s either a big city with skyscrapers or a quiet suburban street. there is no in between. Others find developers and development to be inherently bad, and they find it wrong to promote it as a solution to a problem, so they find it disgusting.

In any case, researchers at the University of California have found that supply skepticism makes people less likely to support home building. If supply doesn’t drive prices down, it’s no solution to the pain middle- and low-income families feel when they’re struggling to pay rent or save a down payment.

debtaction has a way self-assertion. When crises deepen, motivated reasoning, denial of obvious truths, and contradictions of logic bend and often break under pressure. Maybe your child ignores the fact that he’s not doing his homework when he’s bringing home B’s and C’s, and his laziness isn’t, so tell his teachers and other concerned family members that he’s not doing his homework. to defend that Big deal. But when he is in danger of failing? When he can’t pass the basic reading and writing requirements to move on to the next grade? At some point, escaping reality becomes too costly for most people.

Experts have long warned of a housing crisis. But only in the last few years as median home prices across the country have reached the top. $450,000, the policy landscape has changed.Especially in California (where the numbers are Over $800,000), lawmakers passed housing production bills one after another. Governors of Montana and Virginia, legislators of Maine and Utah, and policymakers at all levels of the federal government are uniting on the need to build more homes.

Voters often give conflicting powers to elected officials. Save more on housing! No work on your commute! It is the role of elected officials to optimize these concerns rather than to do what contradicts the letter. In a world where things aren’t so bad, magical thoughts blossom. You can pretend that you can keep the city amber when most people are okay. But as more and more high-income renters find themselves locked out of homeownership, and the chronically unprotected population soars, reality is beginning to set in.

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