Insights · June 10th, 2009

This Friday, June 12, I have the opportunity to address a conference on Affordable Housing, at the Everett Washington Events Center. There is still time to register.

As you may know I have been speaking about the future of housing, and community design, for some time, and particularly since September 2007 when I made a splash at the annual Washington Housing Conference. There, I was one of the early public voices warning that the housing finance bust was looming, and that it would be worse than acknowledged at the time.

This week, I am still considering just how to approach this event, but am more and more convinced of two things:

1. The housing finance crash was actually a result of four intersecting crises converging at the wrong time – the easy debt society, the end of a century of cheap energy, a demographic mis-match between what is being built and what is needed, and looming concern about climate change. All of these forces are combining to cause increasing numbers of people to reconsider where and how they live, and making old patterns of development potentially less viable.

2. The mis-match between the cost of houses we have been building, and the ability of wage earners to afford them without creative financing is not yet reconciled. We have a way to go before housing is affordable.

I will see where I go with this on Friday, but stop by if you have time.

Glen Hiemstra is a futurist speaker, consultant, blogger, internet video host and founder of To arrange for a speech contact

Millennial City
Nikolas Badminton – Chief Futurist

Nikolas Badminton

Nikolas is the Chief Futurist of the Futurist Think Tank. He is world-renowned futurist speaker, a Fellow of The RSA, and has worked with over 300 of the world’s most impactful companies to establish strategic foresight capabilities, identify trends shaping our world, help anticipate unforeseen risks, and design equitable futures for all. In his new book – ‘Facing Our Futures’ – he challenges short-term thinking and provides executives and organizations with the foundations for futures design and the tools to ignite curiosity, create a framework for futures exploration, and shift their mindset from what is to WHAT IF…

Contact Nikolas