Real estate seemed perfect

No one in the late ’80s truly understood what any of the technology firms would produce before their boom and growth. The equity markets looked like a perilous place to speculate about the future. People had come back down to earth and were looking for a traditional method to accumulate wealth. They wanted something tangible, something familiar and certainly easily understood. Real estate seemed perfect. It was among the most tangible of all assets and historically one of the safest investments. Or so it seemed.

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The first decade of the new millennium in America bore witness to a viral explosion in real estate investment, fueled by low mortgage rates and an abandonment of the equity markets. The nation created a new market overnight to continue the necessary growth in the United States and all with one simple key: home mortgage debt.

In the blink of an eye, the American consumers, companies and investment markets shifted from an investment practice and equity-oriented philosophy that had characterized the dot-com era to a debt-fueled runaway train with no brakes.