Sunday, January 17, 2010

Uncertain Futures and Invested Interests

Originally uploaded by Akanzler
In a discussion in class recently, we touched on the idea of how people deal with time in relation to their living situation. It really hit home.

Here in Pomona, I've noticed from first hand experience that a lot of people who live here are renting either their apartment or their house. I for one am one of them.

This affects my invested interest not only in my home but also in my city. The uncertainty of my future in this particular home makes it so that I have very little interest in spending money to fix my home. Unfortunately, the house needs a lot of work. A new roof is needed (those who follow my blog will remember the loss of a laptop due to a leaky roof) but all that has been done is that plastic has been placed on top of the roof. I am not interested in paying for the new roof. Seeing as how I sublease, I am not in contact with the actual property owner so my line of communication is already complicated.
(Why not just move out? well, as a starving student who is trying to save money to buy a house I have very few options)

If I owned my home my futures have a higher level of certainty so my invested interest in the house would be increased. And the home that I might own, being in a certain city would also increase my invested interest because I am more likely to stay within that city because I live in the home that I own.

To be honest, I don't know how long I will be living in Pomona because I do not own a home here. Also, I do not know what home prices will look like when I have enough saved up to buy a home. Though homes are cheap in Pomona and I really want to stay, there is a chance that I may need to look elsewhere for a home.

SO, like most renters I have a greater likelihood of transience. Thus my invested interest in the city is not as high as it might be due to that. With so many homes "se rente," we wonder why, with a population so high, so many people don't show that they care in this wonderful city of Pomona.

We studied this in relation to environmental issues but it indeed relates to many other issues of concern inside a city.

There are other cities that require that when someone buys a house, they (or sometimes an immediate family member) must live in it for at least a year or more before they can consider renting it out. I'm just saying... it's something worth considering.

(The article of discussion was "Time, Cycles and Tempos in Social-ecological Research and Environmental Policy" by Charles H. Wood from Time & Society 2008; 17; 261)

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