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One other quick note: the San Francisco Bay Area was probably the closest we've seen to a housing bubble recently. I wrote some comments about that (and about fears of an overal housing price bubble and the possible impact it could have) over a year ago:

"Buying a home within 12-18 months" has now become within 6 months, so we're roughly on schedule.

Anyway, a lot of those same thoughts I had have been echoed with increasing volume in other places, although I still don't hear much about the change in the nature of credit markets to package debt and therefore diffuse the risk throughout the system. However, this doesn't make the risk go away, and I think some lenders were acting as if it did.

FWIW, I view buying a house as buying a home first, and an investment a distant second. I try and pay attention to general trends and such to have an idea how it might impact our financial situation overall, but a house is always (to me) a home before anything else.

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