Bob Menzies said in 1950:
“One of the best instincts in us is that which induces us to have one little piece of earth with a house and a garden which is ours; to which we can withdraw, in which we can be among our friends, into which no stranger may come against our will.”
In turbulent times one of the most stabilising elements in one’s life is the ability to return to one’s home as a sanctuary from the outside world.
Too often we approach housing as a product that must go up in value. This is rare considering almost everything else we buy depreciates immediately after purchase.
Today I want to approach the ‘metaphysical’ element to housing.
The sense of belonging and the sense of stability. We encounter an unusually strong attachment to our own home. Even when people leave one home for another, a strong sense of attachment remains with the former home.
It is more than memories. It’s what that home offered in the way of sharing part of our lives.
Children even today find it very hard to sell the family home. Even if they have moved out and are living with their new families elsewhere, they often try and stop their parents selling the family home. They don’t want to lose connection to the original home.
Children’s bedrooms are sacred space; often with “Do Not Enter” signs on the doors. They are areas of safety and privacy.
Let’s not underestimate neighbourhoods of owner occupiers, all maintaining and improving their properties and looking out for each other. Conversations on the front lawns or over the fence with your neighbours.
Housing should be looked at by the value it brings to people’s lives rather than its pure economic value.