Survey: More Renters Want to Become Homeowners
Published: August 05, 2013
During the recession, much media coverage of homeownership focused on the idea that lots of people thought renting was much smarter than buying. But that wasn't necessarily the case as a look back shows.
The decline in home prices and turmoil in the housing markets did influence consumers' perception of housing as a sound investment -- but not by nearly as much as the media made it appear.
From 2007 to 2011, based on earlier Pulse surveys, the share of people who thought buying a home was a good financial decision dropped from about 85% to 73% and the share of people who were "not so strongly" positive grew. By 2013, we're back to 80% thinking homeownership is a sound financial decision.
You can interpret that dip two ways. Some would say homeowners were resilient as prices declined. Others would say the recession was a wake up call for investors who viewed the real estate market as a short-term investment.
Regardless of which way you see it, most of us have returned to the much more realistic viewpoint that real estate is a solid, if long-term, investment.
This year's Home Pulse survey also found:
Attitudes toward the housing market have also improved over the years. Nearly four in 10 Americans (38%) said their local market was more active this year, compared with 51% of people who reported a slowdown in local activity last year.
There is also less concern than in the past about the drop in home values; almost half (49%) said housing prices in their area are more expensive than a year ago.