The problem with this strategy is that if i am laid off as a result of a down turn there is no way I want to be on the bad end of a fire sale as I would be packing my uhaul to leave the state with a forclosure on my record. If I am not in a position to buy in a fire sale due to a lay off then I simply leave and possibly still buy fire sale property from down south and come back to a paid off home later on. It would take me a decade to save for those numbers unless I went to a bank and got in way over my head. I know some people have military pensions and work for the state/feds so their set up pretty good if things start breaking apart but I work directly for oil and gas so it would be incredibly dumb for me to pay prices like that with no gauarenttee of longgevity here.
If I can hold on as a top employee as things break up that is where I could come out smelling like a rose, but i am still competeing against the pensioners/fed job guys.
It is also not unheard of for people to rent their entire career up here and then just buy an entire dream estate somewhere down south to retire.