Housing Crisis

So it's not news that there is a housing crisis in the game Final Fantasy XIV given how absurd the costs are for a tiny block of land. Even mainstream gaming media has picked up on the issue and have reached the conclusion that it is just bad game design. Only a small handful of players can afford a home, and alarmingly two players have acquired twenty eight blocks of land in one town, effectively locking out the rest of the players on that server.

Whilst those players have done nothing wrong in their quest to acquire so many plots of land, it does raise a question about why the game designers allowed it to happen? Scarcity is the mother of all drama, whether we are talking about plots of land in real life or in a fantasy role playing game. It would save everyone a lot of hassle if game designers, town planners and politicians thought about what they are doing, instead of leaving the solution to market forces to 'adjust' itself.

Sydney has EARNED its reputation for being the most unaffordable city in Australia, and second only to Hong Kong on the world's housing unaffordability index. When median price of homes are A$1 million plus and apartment units are A$750,000+ at the city's fringes... it doesn't leave much hope for first home buyers.

The solution is probably a mix of increasing supply; reducing artificial demand for housing; controlling migration or population growth; building more cities?!; supporting regional towns through infrastructure development; eliminating the stupid tax incentives that favor property investment over owner/occupation.

The Australian federal government refuses to fix the issue from a taxation level, so have blamed the state governments for the supply of land and infrastructure backlog. The state government is raking in the stamp duty, and blames local councils for blocking development applications or resisting density increases. The NSW government also attempted to dismantle local councils by amalgamations. Some merged councils have puppet administrators to handle key development corridors. So much for democracy!

We are now at record highs in housing construction and record low interest rates, and yet first home buyer numbers are still dwindling. If you are a single income professional working full time, you don't have the means to get into the housing market without a massive deposit (or help from family) as that is how absurd house prices are in this city!

Alas, this morning a BOATSHED is being listed for A$33 million! WHY????

On a personal note I need to get out of this city ASAP. The only variables i can control are geography (of my future home) and place of employment. Macro economic factors are important but I have no means to influence them. The cost of home ownership in Sydney is just too unreasonable now. I have no option but abandoning this city if I desire home ownership. Unless you can muster a household income of A$150,000 per year, it's very tough to crack the Sydney housing market.




real life, final fantasy, housing, crisis, rant