Home prices have been surging in recent months as investors seek a safe haven amid a tightening housing market.
And while some of those investments are fueling the surging prices, others are creating long-term pain for many Americans.
The housing market is in the midst of one of its worst stretches of consolidation since the Great Depression.
The price index for single-family detached homes in March climbed just 4.2 percent from a year ago, compared with a 4.5 percent gain for single family homes in the same month last year.
The housing index for multifamily homes has fallen more than 8 percent since April.
The housing downturn is especially pronounced in urban areas where home prices are soaring as people seek higher-paying jobs.
A large part of the blame for that, according to economists, is the Federal Reserve’s $4.5 trillion asset purchase program that began this year.
That program, which has fueled the growth in home prices, has left many homeowners struggling.
The program has allowed investors to take on long-vacant properties, including many in lower-income communities.
While many people can afford to pay down their mortgages in time, many who cannot find a home with enough money to make payments are left behind in the housing crunch.
According to one housing economist, the program has been a “huge driver” of the price increases.
“In places where they can buy, the housing prices are increasing faster than incomes, and the problem is that it’s causing them to live in conditions that are not conducive to their families,” said Doug Bandow, an economist at the Urban Institute.
That’s one of the reasons why the housing boom is so important to many people in America.
While the Federal Government has been easing its rules on how much cash it can spend on mortgages, it has also loosened restrictions on how many mortgages can be taken out, and on how quickly the government can write down a home.
But many of the investors who are getting into the market are struggling to get a foothold.
In the first nine months of this year, the number of Americans filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy soared, reaching a record high of 7.6 million.
That’s nearly one out of every three Americans.
As the housing recovery has accelerated, so too has the number filing for bankruptcy.
The average number of bankruptcies rose by more than 30 percent in the first quarter, the largest one-year gain since the housing crisis began in 2007.
The numbers were similar for the period of the Great Recession, which ended in June 2009.
Many people in the country are struggling just to get by.
In April, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau reported that more than a third of the nation’s workers were not getting enough money for food, clothing or rent.
More than 40 percent of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck, according the National Low Income Housing Coalition.
Nearly half of those people were not eligible for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), which provides help to low-income families who rely on food stamps or other federal aid.
And the crisis has pushed many Americans further from their jobs.
In February, the unemployment rate was 8.1 percent, down from 9.4 percent a year earlier.
And the number who had given up looking for work hit a high of 16.6 percent in May.
People are taking on more debt, and some are paying down more of their debt.
The debt service on credit cards and car loans is growing, according.
Some of the big financial institutions are also getting into it, too.
The New York Federal Reserve said on Thursday that it was expanding its QE program to more than 500 banks to help them meet the stress tests of banks.
The Fed has already taken steps to ease its restrictions on asset purchases, including the opening of a new $1 trillion revolving fund to invest in more consumer-focused assets.
The Fed also has a new program to buy mortgages that have not yet been written off, such as the $1.5-trillion portfolio of mortgage-backed securities.
But the program was set to expire in June.
And the Federal Housing Administration is expanding its loan program, expanding eligibility for low- and moderate-income homeownership and allowing more homeowners to buy homes.
At the same time, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. is pushing the banks to sell mortgage-related assets, like homes, that have been sitting idle.
The bank has been increasing its leverage on its own insured deposit accounts, which allow banks to borrow money from the government.
The bank is also expanding the program to allow mortgage-based savings accounts to be opened and to encourage people to contribute to the programs to lower their overall risk of losing their homes.
While many people are starting to come to grips with their financial future, many people aren’t getting the full financial support they need.
Banks and mortgage lenders have been struggling to meet new consumer demand, and they have struggled to meet