5 de enero de 2010

Una casa es una pésima inversión

Sin duda, la mayoría de las personas consideran que una casa o una vivienda es una excelente inversión. Eso es una opinión equivocada según Karen Pence, funcionaria de la Reserva Federal y quien tiene a su cargo un grupo de investigación en el banco central norteamericano sobre bienes raíces.

En una reunión en el American Economic Association, Pence explicó sus razones. Para ella, los factores que hacen de la vivienda una mala inversión son los siguientes:

  1. It is an indivisible asset. If you own stocks and bonds and suddenly need a little cash, you can sell some of your stocks or bonds but not all. With a home, on the other hand, “you can’t just slice off your bathroom and sell it on the market.”
  2. It is undiversified. You can buy stocks or bonds in industries or countries all over the world. A home is a bet on one single neighborhood.
  3. Transaction costs are very high when you buy or sell a home because of real estate agent fees, mortgage fees and moving costs.
  4. It is asymmetrically liquid, meaning it’s easy to get money out when home prices are going up. (You just take out a bigger mortgage.) But it’s hard to take money out when prices are going down because refinancing becomes more difficult. Put another way, the leverage that you have in your house with a large mortgage means your investment does well in good times but could be lousy in bad times.
  5. It is highly correlated to the job market, meaning that home prices in a neighborhood tend to rise when the job market is improving in the area and fall when the job market is worsening. This means that your main financial asset provides the smallest cushion to you when you might need it most.

Aquí la fuente.

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