READER REPORT:

Property ladder: Don't blame baby boomers

SUE O'NEILL
Last updated 05:00 29/06/2013
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DON'T BLAME US: Each generation has had it tough but you can't keep blaming us for all that is wrong in the world, writes Sue O'Neill.

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I am what is considered a baby boomer, and like many of my friends, I'm sick and tired of being blamed for all the ills of today's younger generation.

I am 60 years old and I remember being envious of my parents - they had a 3 per cent loan from the housing corporation for the life of the loan and they could cash in their family benefit payment to use as a deposit on their quarter-acre home.

I left school at 15 because my parents could not afford to keep me at school. University was only for the wealthy and you had to have good grades to earn a place, the same with polytech.

I worked for several years in dead-end jobs, got married, and had my family. Upon buying our first house, we managed to get a loan with housing corporation at 7 per cent for six months, which then rose to 8 per cent. To get a bank loan you had to have a house savings account for three years prior to applying.

Within three years of buying our interest rate was 9 per cent. Nine years later we sold it for little more than we paid for it. During this time my husband was made redundant with no payout. Another home was purchased at 21 per cent interest rate. That was tough, once again we on-sold the home to get something a little better, but once again another redundancy.

I went back to night classes, got a bit of an education, and got a better job. We now have bought the house we always dreamed of. We have no mortgage, but we are not rich. Both my husband and I have each been made redundant twice and we always had to pay relatively high interest rates.

It saddens me when I read the misconceptions of what it was like for us. Yes, some may have made money, bought lots of houses, but myself and most of my friends and family had it just as tough as they do today.

We even envy the younger ones, being able to go to university, and with paid maternity leave and working for families for the lower earners.

Each generation has had it tough but you can't keep blaming us for all that is wrong in the world, all we ever did was go to work and provide for our families as best we could. Blame the governments, they changed the world the made their decisions and we all have had to live with it.


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