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Wanna-Be vs. Buyers

September 23, 1990

So our parents were the Cleavers and we wanna be the Cleavers too ('Home Sick" by Rhonda Bright, Aug. 26). The implication is that the only major difference between our parents and ourselves is that they could buy a home while we, through no fault of our own, can't. But is that really the case?

Compared to our parents, how often do we eat out? Have our hair done? Fly to Vegas? Do we consider dog groomers, gardeners, fitness clubs, acrylic nails, car detailing, 10 major credit cards and a trendy address as essentials?

Would we be willing to move to another state in search of the good life, without guarantees? Most of our parents did. Do we own at least one car, more likely two, that we bought new? Chances are our parents didn't.

Face it. We're not the Cleavers. Maybe our parents weren't either. They bought the house they could afford, in the newly developing suburbs of L.A., the equivalent of Victorville or Moreno Valley today. And maybe it wasn't their dream home--did we ever ask them? And maybe it wasn't as big or as posh as we remember it.

Has chasing a myth made us so serious, so stressed, so focused, that we can see only one option? Our house must be this, and it must have that, and it must be here.

Maybe if we lightened up a bit, other options would present themselves. An example: Why not a lease-option on a $150,000 fixer-upper in, say, Covina. Seriously, Why not?



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