GuyInTaiwan wrote:bismarck: That's right. I'm not saying that investing in real estate isn't a good thing. What I am saying is that it is not always a good thing. It's highly overrated, as proven by the fiascos in the U.S. and several European nations.
I have to disagree. I think the problem in US and Europe was that people didn't draw a clear line between investment, and a home.
An investment is something you try to make as much money as possible while spending the least. While on a home, you shouldn't expect to make any money out of it. But in both US and Europe, people used their own home like an atm and investment. They either poured too much money into it, hoping to get a huge return, or took too much from line of equity, thinking the value will stay up. They crossed the line between owning a home, and making an investment, a big no-no in my opinion. So when wanting to purchase real estate, one should ask themselves, whether or not they want it as a home to live in, or an investment. Because you can't have both...it doesn't work that way.
I for one believe people should own their home, but whether or not everyone should buy real estate for investment, is a different story.