Don Marti

Wed 10 May 2006 05:43:57 PM PDT

Don't Panic

Jason Ruspini, in a post on interest rate and housing futures, writes, "The time doesn't seem ripe for retail hedging just yet." Yes, the housing futures markets are still too new to work as prudent "insurance" for a family with its savings tied up in a housing bubble.

But there's one type of home buyer who can benefit from the housing options market right away: the panic buyer. Now, if you're afraid that bubble madness prices will keep you out of the house you'll need in a few years, you don't have to get into the market the messy way, termite inspections and all. Live in a rental and let some numbers on a computer protect you. Then take your own sweet time buying your dream house when you're ready for it, whether you're using your option profits for the down payment or picking off a post-bubble bargain.