Perhaps it's because I grew up in a house with a gas oven and have had gas ovens in most of the apartments I lived in for years, but I've never had problems baking with them. But I've also never had the kinds of experiences discussed in this question, even in multiple apartments with cheap old stoves. (The only place I ever had problems cooking things was with a cheap electric stove/oven that would burn the tops of everything.)
If things like this ever happened to me, I would seriously consider having the oven checked or serviced. It sounds like the air is simply not circulating properly and/or may be vented (or have the vent partly obstructed) in a way that is not allowing the oven to heat uniformly. Or perhaps the thermostat is really off. You could start by checking with an oven thermometer on various shelves while baking and see if you're seeing vastly different temperatures at the top and bottom. Maybe those who grew up with electric ovens or convection ovens just bake differently in ways that I'd never think of, but I currently have an electric oven, and I don't do much differently from when I baked in gas ovens, and everything pretty much works the same. (The only differences I've noticed usually come from venting issues: gas ovens are built with more venting due to combustion and gases, so electric ovens generally act more tightly sealed -- which can be an issue for steam venting occasionally, but can be an advantage for steaming bread or something.)
Anyhow, I agree with other answers' advice to bake on a higher rack and use a larger pan/stone/cookie sheet on a lower rack to deflect some of the heat from the bottom if the bottoms of food are getting done too fast. (I needed to do that above just about everything I baked in my miscalibrated cheap electric oven I had years ago that would burn tops.)
I also agree with the idea of trying to lower temperature slightly on some recipes. This may cause rising problems in some food that depend on rapid "oven spring" in the beginning of a bake. But if you don't need that hot heat in an initial burst, a lower temperature may allow the top of the food to dry out over a longer bake and then begin to brown.
Similarly, you might consider different pans or cookie sheets, particularly if they are dark-colored. Dark pans will brown baked goods more quickly due to heat radiating from them more strongly.
Basically: browning reactions don't start to happen quickly until the outer layer of the food dries out (and can thus increase in temperature above boiling). The top of food starts to turn brown once it dries out from the air circulation (i.e., a "crust" forms), and the bottom of food starts to turn brown when the radiant heat from the pan dries the "crust" out. You want to speed up the former (e.g., by placing the food higher in the oven) while slowing down the latter (e.g., by blocking any direct heat on the bottom, using light-colored pans, and perhaps lowering the overall temperature to allow time for the top to dry out and catch up with the radiant heat from the bottom).