Living January 25, 2010

What is a house?


What does the Internet say we think about our homes in 2010?

This morning, I did an experiment to see what the Internet would say about the relationship we have with our houses. I typed “my house is” into Google and let the autocomplete tell the story (the autocomplete works by suggesting additional search terms based on content from across the web and other searches completed through Google).

There seemed to be a striking theme in the most popular searches. Aside from the search for “mi casa es su casa” and pricing information the rest of the searches were based on problems with houses.


The results aren’t surprising with the challenges faced by many homeowners today. But it leads me to speculate about how these Google searches would have looked in 2007 or how they may look in 2011 and beyond.

I suspect that in 2007 we would have seen “appreciating”, “making me money” or “a wise investment” as suggested additions to my original search.  We may see those types of terms return in the future as the market finds its equilibrium and begins to return to long term patterns of price growth and balance between supply and demand.

Until then there is a negative shadow cast over the perceptions of our homes.  Anyone can make predictions about what may happen with the future but only time will tell how the forces of supply and demand, consumer confidence and government intervention will affect the market in 2010. Until then, you can use Google’s autocomplete for your own experiments to see what the web will say about us.