Should You Pay Off Your House/Mortgage Early?? Your Home is a Bad Investment, Pay it Off Early to Lose Less.

I often hear people refer to buying a home as a good investment.  They usually say it is one of the best things you can do to virtually guarantee a long-term positive gain.  I disagree.  The other day at work, I had a discussion with a co-worker about this. 
When I told him that I felt the sale of your home is almost impossible to generate a profit on, he looked at me with his "stupid face".  I gave him an example:  A couple bought a home for $150,000 and 30 years later sell it for $300,000.  I asked if he felt they made a $150,000 profit (he said yes).  I then told him that typically they would have paid about twice the original loan amount by the time it was paid off (interest).  So the $150,000 mortgage eventually came to $300,000 after principle & interest (no, I didn't use a mortgage interest calculator).  They also paid 30 years worth of real estate taxes ($100,000 worth???).  They also spend $25,000 or so in upgrades over the years (flooring, remodeled kitchen & bathrooms, etc).  They also spent thousands on landscaping & yard maintenance.  How much did they spend on refinancing the mortgage trying to get the lowest mortgage rates? 
Now if an "investment" is supposed to MAKE you money, how does paying $425,000+++ for something that eventually is sold for $300,000 count as a good investment?  To me it is cheaper than renting but definitely not a good investment.  All you do is "lose less".  
I do agree that it is definitely possible to make money in buying rental property.  In that case, the renter basically pays off the mortgage and when all is said and done you will own the asset.  Time to go mow my money losing grass.....