The idea of owning property is a value brought by the early illegal European immigrants to this country. Jamestown was founded on trade – the idea of making money.
By the time of the European migration to this continent all of the land in Europe was taken. If land was not inherited, it could not be had. Most of the land was owned by the rich and the powerful. The people there worked as tenant farmers, or serf, or peasants. There was just no land that was not already taken.
One of the hopes and dreams that early immigrants had was not so different than the immigrants of today. The hope that one day they could own their own land. They could own property. It was a driving force – a fundamental reason to come here. That value has been passed down for generations.
When we talk about the American dream we often think of owning a house with a garage, two cars, and a chicken in every pot. It is a very powerful image of who we are supposed to be as Americans.
I am pleased that you and your wife talk rationally and honestly about these values – rather than feeling compelled to act on old cultural values. There is economic merit in owning property – but it is work and there are costs that many do not think about. My central air went out two months ago and it cost me $2300 to replace – that was not a budgeted item. Ouch!
I love colored leaves on the trees in the fall, and then they fall on my dirt and I have to go pick them up. Well, I guess I don’t have to, but I am one who likes a nicely groomed yard. That is a personal value.
You are wise to think through the pros and cons of property ownership. With your history of a nomadic lifestyle you might want to think of buying a home that has wheels.