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Steve Edwards' website

Unfinished Romanian houses

Dacia, càruţà, and an empty house

Most Romanians of 2008 live in true poverty, with prices of most consumer items close to those in rich countries, and wages a fraction of those of even Hungary or Poland. Incongruently, new Romanian houses tend to be large — too large, and even massive.

Many of them are unfinished.

There are hundreds of uncompleted houses in seemingly any town of medium size. Many are unoccupied and not yet habitable, or only partially completed and half-occupied.

Occasionally one will see a massive house, three stories tall, with balconies at both upper levels and no railing upon the balconies. The mortal danger is obvious.

One might wonder about the function of unprotected balconies.

They're just balconies. The railing — expensive stainless steel — is not yet purchased. The house is not yet finished, and is unoccupied.