A young family wants to live in their own house. Both parents are academics, he works full-time and she works part-time. But houses are expensive. Nobody thinks of owning their own home in the metropolis. The couple builds in the small town, about 50 minutes from Karlsruhe – at least when there is no traffic jam. In order to reduce costs, the family does a lot of things themselves. The father even lays the tiles in the bathroom and toilet. Nevertheless, the family has to take out an enormous loan.
Spend only 30 percent of your income on housing? Oh where! The family lives on the part-time income of the mother, the full-time income of the father goes for interest and repayment. Holidays are out of the question at first, restaurants are usually seen by the family from the outside. After all, the bank charges nine percent interest. This narrative sounds exaggerated, maybe even satirical? It is not.
A home is expensive
Everything about it is reality – or rather: It was reality, namely the life of my parents when building a house in the early 80s. They weren't the only ones – that's how house construction worked back then.
Today, many young people say they can't afford a house. They would have it much harder than their parents.
The truth is: A home is expensive. All the more so if you want to live in the big cities. But it is also true that this is not new, the high interest rates of these years only remind us of all this.
You have to want to afford your own house first. But that's exactly what it's all about – wanting. Those who want to live in their own house are rewarded in old age; Homeowners have then usually saved more assets than tenants. Before that, however, there is a lot of renunciation: for example, on restaurant visits and expensive holidays, for example on a short commute to work.
Perhaps it is this renunciation that has become more difficult for people. Staying at home during the summer holidays is easier if the others also stay at home. But this is no longer the case in many milieus in Germany.