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Survey: Americans Still Want to Own Homes

A recent national survey finds that approximately three in every four Americans regard home ownership as an important investment and want to own homes.

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The survey, conducted by ""Lake Research Partners"":http://www.lakeresearch.com/ and ""Public Opinion Strategies"":http://pos.org/, polled 2,000 likely 2012 voters in May. Participants included homeowners, renters, and young adults living at home with their parents.

The findings ""[speak] pretty clearly about the enduring value of home ownership among Americans,"" said Neil Newhouse, partner and founder at Public Opinion Strategies, over a conference call organized by the ""National Association of Home Builders"":http://www.nahb.com/.

""Despite the ups and downs of the housing market, homeowners consider owning a home to be a central part of the American dream,"" Newhouse added.
""Americans still see owning a home as one of the best investments they can make,"" said Bob Nielsen, ""NAHB's"":http://www.nahb.com/ chairman.

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In response to a question that asked participants to rank their priorities, 74 percent of respondents rated home ownership just below paying off their debt, saving enough for retirement, and being successful at work.

Despite the recent housing crisis and perceptions of risk in housing markets, 75 percent of the participants agreed that owning a home is worth the risk.

When asked what they considered to be their best investment, 36 percent of survey participants identified their homes as the most important. Sixty-seven percent of participants who identified themselves as renters ""strongly agreed"" that owning a home is the best long-term investment.

Participants from all age groups also agreed that owing a home is the best long-term investment, with 79 percent of those aged 18-34 ""agreeing"" with 79 percent of those aged 65 and above.

Ninety-five percent of participants who identified themselves as homeowners said they were ""happy"" with their decisions to own a home, the survey finds.

The survey found that 2 in 1 Americans who owe more on their homes agreed that home ownership is worth the risk, despite the perception of risk in the housing market.

Nearly three-fourths, or 74 percent, of those who do not own a home also said that it is a goal of theirs to buy one.

""There's a reason for that ├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔé¼┼ô Americans are optimists,"" said Celinda Lake, president of ""Lake Research Partners"":http://www.lakeresearch.com/. ""By a 2-to-1 margin, they say it's worth a risk despite the ups and downs of the housing market.""

Thirty-one percent of participants reported that saving for a down payment and closing costs presented the biggest obstacles to home ownership.

About Author: Ryan Schuette

Ryan Schuette is a journalist, cartoonist, and social entrepreneur with several years of experience in real-estate news, international reporting, and business management. He currently lives in the Washington, D.C., area, where he freelances for DS News and MReport.
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