Since the real estate market collapsed, buying a home has become possible for middle-class families for whom it was previously out of reach, the New York Times reports. Taina Goldman, a Miami nurse, recently paid $187,000 for a house worth $370,000 three years ago. And she’s not alone. Sales of existing homes actually rose 5.1 percent in February, driven mainly by the sale of foreclosed houses.
Jennifer Vaughn bought a new house in Homestead, Fla., for $87,000. “I’m going to stay for five or six years at least, and I’m sure prices will go up somewhat by then,” says Vaughn. “It’s like the best feeling. I never thought I could own.” There is a tinge of sadness, Goldman adds. “It’s unfortunate that I have to build my happiness on top of tears.”