Here on this blog, there's a lot of talk about waste: How not to waste food, old electronics, energy, and more. But this story about waste may be the most egregious - a bank has decided to demolish new homes in Victorville, Calif. because it was cheaper than selling them in this market. As my colleague Luke Mullins pointed out, it's a sign of just how bad the housing market has gotten. It's also a troubling example of our American culture of disposability.
Says the Wall Street Journal:
Demolishing vacant houses in economically troubled, inner-city neighborhoods is common. But the demolitions in Victorville show how the housing market is weighing on lenders even in once-booming suburbs. The houses were built by a California developer less than two years ago, according to city records.
Because the homes were vacant, squatters had moved in, and the bank says that they tore them down for safety reasons. The demolition was estimated to have cost $100,000. Appliances were removed from the house before the demolition (either by the workers, or by vandals - the article doesn't say). Fortunately, some of the wood will be reused for construction projects in Mexico, while the rest will be ground up for mulch. You can watch the demolition crew move in here: