WASHINGTON – Aug. 17, 2012 – A Fannie Mae survey finds that 85 percent of Americans would rather own their residence than rent, but finances prevent many from achieving homeownership.
Of the survey respondents carrying mortgages, 40 percent said the ease of obtaining a mortgage, affordability, homeownership benefits and financial stressors would determine whether they buy or rent in the future. Thirty-nine percent cited attitudes about housing, and 21 percent cited demographics as the factors driving their decision. Overall, the study found that the decision to buy or rent – and when to buy – is complex and involves more than the current state of the housing market.
Of the renters queried, 42 percent said any decision on whether to buy or rent depends on a range of factors including their current attitude about housing, flexibility and market timing. Demographics and financial attitudes were cited by 33 percent and 25 percent of renters, respectively.
The research also looked at the factors that would fuel decisions for homeowners free of mortgages. Of these, 65 percent cited employment, income, age and other demographics as key to any decision to change homes; 17 percent cited attitudes toward housing; and 19 percent cited financial concerns.
“The whole world thinks about underwriting or what’s my income (when evaluating the homebuying decision), but what is driving consumers seems to fall more in this attitudinal world,” says Steve Deggendorf, one of the study’s authors. “If we helped people understand these attitudes that are driving their decision-making process, it would help them make better housing decisions.”
Helping buyers understand how their attitudes and emotions play into a homebuying decision would enable them to better balance their desires with their budgets instead of focusing only on a dream home.
Source: Housing Wire (08/02/12) Panchuk, Kerri Ann
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