Here's a great video showing the growth and collapse of the housing bubble. Things really start to take off around 2000. This coincides with the bursting of the the Dot-Com/ NASDAQ bubble and consequent slashing of interest rates by the Federal Reserve, which made mortgages super cheap. So in the end, we traded one bubble for a larger one. Makes you wonder what's next. In my view, what we have growing now is a government bubble.