The Ghost Ship

7 thoughts on “The Ghost Ship”

  1. The question is: why would we rather be peasants in California than live in middle class abundance elsewhere? It may be economically irrational, but not personally so. Something compels us.

  2. Love the hat tip at the end to the book, Your Money or your Life. Read it years ago, nice reminder.

    Found your blog via JMG. Enjoying reading through your posts.

  3. How bad is the Bay Area affordable housing crisis? How big is the bubble? To give people outside of the area a little context, this is the sales history for my modest home:

    1952: $11,500 (a little over 100k in today’s dollars. In other words, very much a blue collar GI bill kind of home)
    2000: $370k
    2005: $685k
    2011: $435k (me)

    Current comps (unremodeled, 3/1, 1050 sq.ft) in the area run in the high 700s. Add an extra bedroom/bathroom and stage it well and you can get about 900k. BTW, my area is considered “affordable” by San Mateo county standards.

    What’s causing it? Well, recently around the office, a large group of us were (eating our gourmet catered lunches) & bitching and moaning about rent, how much they had to pay for a tear down in X part of Oakland, etc.

    Then I asked how many of them grew up in the Bay Area. One hand went up. None of them have kids and most of them are making 6 figures. Throw on a heap of foreign investment, a tangle of no growth policies/regulations, constrained geography, and ta-da: housing crisis.

    Like you said, the Bay Area is toast. The bubble will pop again but it’s hard to predict when and how.

  4. Interesting! Thanks for the perspective. I lived in Madrid for a year and there were illegal squats that were getting shut down, starting up, and shifting all of the time. Always found the coolest inhabitants within. Lots of great talent and warmer hospitality to offer than most folks with high-rent apartments? Housing and the host of legalities is a mess in the USA. It certainly doesn’t favor regular humans.

  5. I’m not sure if the story would have been different if Ghost Ship was merely art studios & a concert venue without being affordable housing.

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