Viewpoint: Is Housing Crisis Just a State of Mind?

Ann Brenoff

Is it possible that the housing crisis is really just a problem caused by our state of mind, not the state of the economy? Is the thing stopping people from buying houses nothing more than their perceptions? Apparently, to some extent, yes.

We are having what, if economists talked like this, could be described as an irrational fear of commitment.

The facts: The recession is considered over, the country's gross domestic product is growing, unemployment is down and consumer spending is up. Yet, the housing market remains comatose. The only explanation is that we are either all still unemployed and not being counted or we're scared out of our boots.

Want some more evidence that we're just one giant anti-anxiety pill away from fixing what ails the housing market?