A new National Housing Survey conducted by Fannie Mae indicates that delinquent mortgage borrowers possess a positive view of homeownership in 2013 that aligns with that of the general population of mortgage borrowers. One Fannie Mae executive wrote that the data might signify the “broadening of the housing recovery.”
Steve Deggendorf, Fannie Mae’s director of business strategy and author of a commentary about the survey, also wrote that the data exhibits how much delinquent mortgage borrowers actually value homeownership.
The results of the survey, released on Halloween, show that 67 percent of both the general population and delinquent borrowers believed buying a home is a safe investment in 2013’s first quarter. A year earlier, 64 percent of the general population thought the same, while 53 percent of delinquent borrowers did. Meanwhile, the general population of mortgage borrowers saw an increase of 72 percent to 74 percent in the same category during the same time – the spike in the percentage of delinquent buyers who believe a home is a safe investment was noticeably larger than in the other groups.
Furthermore, Deggendorf writes that data from the survey suggests the U.S. might not be transitioning to a “nation of renters” like some experts have suggested. Deggendorf points to the fact that a majority of delinquent borrowers believe in the benefits of home ownership.
In response to the question “to build up wealth, are you better off owning or better off renting?” 74 percent of delinquent borrowers surveyed in the first quarter of 2013 answered owning. For “living within your budget,” 61 percent of the group said owning.
While a gap still exists between the percentage of delinquent borrowers who answer “owning” to these prompts and the general population of mortgage borrowers – in some cases even a larger gap than in 2012’s first quarter – Deggendorf said the data is noteworthy given the duress ownership can exert on delinquent mortgage borrowers.