The entire country experienced a housing boom that set off a neighborhood infrastructure metamorphosis. Even with the housing market flipped upside down, the benefits are boundless.

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Where I live in South Florida, six of the 10 homes in our tiny plaza have been rebuilt, modified or improved. Our utilities are being under-grounded, a park is being restored and new streets are being laid.

We are not unique. The entire country experienced a housing boom that set off a neighborhood infrastructure metamorphosis. 

Measured by the number of cranes, the skyline expresses a collective promise of the future.

Now the housing market has suddenly flipped upside down.

Listings are piling up. A year ago, our little village had 39 homes for sale; 242 are on the market today. 

Slammed by the doubling of mortgage rates, buyers withdrew and agents became skittish, as the great real estate party came to an end.

But the benefits of the boom are going to stay with us for many years to come. New homes were built, roads repaved, utilities upgraded, old houses improved and streets re-landscaped.

Homeownership triggers investment. Unlike buying a car or a boat, owning a home is more akin to getting an education or starting a new business.

It is less about “me” and the short-term joys of personal consumption, and more about “us,” saving for your family’s future and investing in your community.

It is not selfless, but it is not selfish.

That is why policy makers may let some air out of a housing bubble but never go too long before supporting its recovery.

They may not agree on abortion, immigration or tax law, but most understand a healthy housing market goes hand-in-hand with our collective progress.

When times are tough, thinking long term is not easy. But the biggest paydays in life come from actions that look beyond the joys and the pain of the moment.

Email Brad Inman

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