Housing Predictor Poll Results 2008

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Would you make an offer to purchase real estate after only seeing it online?

Yes   –     7% No   –   75% Only if it was cheap enough   –   18%

Buyers Want to See Property First

Perspective property owners are adamantly against buying real estate online without seeing it first in person unless they can get a great deal, according to the latest Housing Predictor survey.

The survey, conducted during the month of December and ending Dec. 18th, found that 75% would not buy property without seeing it in person first. Only 7% said they would put in an offer on real estate seeing it only online. The remaining 18% said they would do so only if they could buy it “cheap” enough.

The online survey dismisses a trend in real estate sales — that perspective purchasers were getting to the point that they would put in an offer to purchase property without seeing it in person.

Do you feel President Barack Obama will be able to improve the U.S. economy?

Yes   –   56% No   –   31% Unsure   –   13%

Majority Say Obama Able to Improve Economy

A large majority say President-elect Barack Obama will be able to improve the U.S. economy, according to the November opinion poll.

Some 56% of all those surveyed said Obama will be able to improve the nation’s economy, while 31% said he would not. Another 13% are unsure. The online survey indicates Americans are confident the new president-elect will be able to help the ailing economy, which has been hammered by the housing depression.

Are you and your family financially stable enough to handle an economic depression?

Yes   –   65% No   –   35%

Most Upbeat on Finances

Despite an economy in the doldrums, most people say they are financially stable enough to handle an economic depression, according to the new Housing Predictor poll.

Some 65% of those surveyed say they are financially stable enough to make it through an economic depression. The remaining 35% said they are not confident enough about their own finances to make it through an economic depression.

President-elect Barack Obama was elected last week, perhaps as a result of economic issues, which Americans over-overwhelmingly say is their chief concern after eight years of growing economic problems under President Bush. The Bush Administration is strongly blamed as the main culprit of the nation’s real estate and financial problems after special interests lobbied the White House and others to loosen mortgage lending standards.

Will the bailout stabilize the housing market?

Yes   –   25% No   –   75%

Survey Reveals Bailout Will Fail

Some 3 out of 4 respondents to the latest Housing Predictor poll said they believe the U.S. government bailout of financial markets will fail to stabilize the nation’s housing markets.

The survey was conducted following Congress’ approval of the $700-billion bailout package, which has already grown from its original level and is now believed to have topped $2-trillion. Housing deflation and a society that has borrowed beyond its means has led to an all-time epidemic of foreclosures and the worst economy since the Great Depression.

Home values in the over-whelming majority of the country are falling after a frenzied real estate boom led to the highest appreciation or housing inflation in the country’s history.

Will home prices continue to drop?

Yes   –   59% No   –   41%

Majority Say Home Prices Will Continue to Drop

Despite efforts by Congress to resolve the nation’s credit crisis, the majority of those surveyed in the latest Housing Predictor poll say they believe housing prices will continue to drop for a number of years.

The survey, conducted at the height of U.S. Congress negotiations to reach an agreement on a rescue plan, shows widespread pessimism exists over the possibility of real estate values appreciating any time soon. A large 59% of those surveyed said they expect real estate prices to continue to fall for a number of years. The remaining 41% who cast votes during the online survey said they do not expect prices to fall for years.

The survey demonstrates that the majority of homeowners and would-be homeowners surveyed are concerned about the real estate market’s future. Housing markets typically run in cycles of 7 to 10 years, and average appreciation slightly above national inflationary rates.

Real estate booms are cycles in which greater appreciation is accumulated for a variety of reasons, including falsely driven appreciation cycles driven by outside market influences like the nation experienced with the new instruments traded in the nation’s financial markets on Wall Street up until more than a year ago.

A similar financial meltdown in Japan sent real estate markets on a 14 year drop in home prices. With government intervention U.S. economists don’t generally expect a similar meltdown to occur here.

Do you ever expect to pay off your home mortgage?

Yes   –   57% No   –   43%

Majority Want to Pay-Off Mortgages

At the height of the worst mortgage meltdown in U.S. history, a majority of those surveyed say they intend to pay-off their mortgages eventually, according to the latest survey.

Some 57% of those who responded to the online poll conducted during the last two weeks of August through Sept. 15th said they intend to pay-off their mortgage eventually. Another 43% or slightly more than 4 out of 10 said they do not intend to pay off their home mortgage at all.

The Housing Predictor survey indicates that the majority of home owners regard paying off their home mortgage as a priority.

The drive to want to pay-off mortgages may be heated by the fact that more than 3-million homes have already been foreclosed in the worst U.S. real estate crisis since the Great Depression, and a forecast 3.4-million additional foreclosures will occur through 2011 as a result of the financial crisis.

Do you feel you have been affected by the real estate crisis in some way?

Yes   –   85% No   –   15%

Whopping Majority Feel Affect

An over-whelming majority of respondents said they feel they have been affected by the real estate crisis in the Housing Predictor poll conducted during the months of July and August.

Some 85% of those surveyed said they had been affected by the crisis. Homes have been devalued in the majority of the nation’s real estate markets during the last two years as fall out from the credit crunch takes its toll on the overall economy. Especially hard hit markets have seen home values deflate by as much as 60% from the markets peak.

Only slightly more than two dozen markets are expected to experience appreciation through year’s end. Just 15% of all respondents to the survey said they had not been affected by the real estate crisis.

How long do you intend to stay in your present home?

2 years or less   –   40% less than 7 years   –   28% 8 years to 14 years   –   14% Longer than 15 years   –   10% For Good   –     8%

Survey Shows Owners Upbeat

Despite a deflationary real estate market in most areas of the country, more than 2 out of 3 homeowners surveyed say they plan on moving within the next seven years. The Housing Predictor survey was conducted during the month of July prior to any significant action taken by Congress to stem the tide of foreclosures.

The poll found that 40% said they plan on moving in the coming two years, while an additional 28% plan on moving within seven years. The poll indicates homeowners are more upbeat about the housing market than many might think. Some 14% plan on making a move in 8 to 14 years. The remainder figure they’ll be staying in their current place of living for more than 15 years.

About one-third of all U.S. housing is free and clear of mortgages.

How long will it take the national real estate economy to improve?

6 months   –   8% 1 year   –   17% 2 years   –   47% Longer than 5 years   –   28%

Survey Shows Optimism

Consumers are optimistic about the national real estate economy with nearly 1 out of 2 respondents saying it will take just two years for the nation to pullout of the worst real estate depression in U.S. history.

The survey, which was taken over the first three weeks of June during the height of Congressional efforts to come up with a plan to help homeowners besieged by foreclosure, also indicates that many Americans may be out of touch with just how deeply the real estate crisis affects the overall economy.

Some 28% indicated the crisis will take more than five years to over come. Twenty-five percent polled said it would take 6 months to a year for conditions to improve.

However, since consumer sentiment is the most significant driving force behind residential real estate markets, the optimistic outlook may well be the strongest aspect of the markets return in strength in the future.

As a result of the mortgage crisis have you lost confidence in lenders?

Yes   –   56% No   –   44%

Mortgage Lenders Lose Confidence

A majority of those surveyed in the latest Housing Predictor poll say they have lost confidence in mortgage lenders as a result of the credit crisis.

The online survey indicates a massive change in the way American consumers regard banks and other lending institutions, displaying disapproval for the way mortgage lenders conducted themselves liberally making home loans to consumers with little regard to others, who their actions may affect. The freewheeling lending standards are at least partially to blame for the U.S. mortgage crisis, which has expanded to affect the nation’s overall economy.

At least three-quarters of all home mortgages made in the last decade were made with few lending regulations, triggering the worst foreclosure epidemic the nation has experienced.

Some 56 percent of those surveyed during the three-week poll said they had “lost confidence” in mortgage lenders, while 44% said they had not lost confidence in lenders. Rising adjustable rate mortgages, designed to fill a void in the public’s demand for more creative mortgage products and subprime loans made to those who would not have otherwise qualified by conventional lending standards along with aggressive Wall Street hedge funds filling the mortgages triggered the mortgage mess.

As a result, financial markets are still in chaos leaving many to ask how long it will take real estate markets to recover.

Are you happy with your home?

Yes   –   67% No   –   33%

Two out of three people surveyed say they are “happy” with their homes, according to the latest Housing Predictor poll, which was completed May 11th.

The online survey is particularly important given its timing and the fact that the U.S. is facing the worst real estate depression since the Great Depression. Record high foreclosures are being recorded across the nation, and few states are immune from the crisis.

However, the online survey shows that most people are “happy” with their living conditions. Some 67% of those surveyed during the three week period said they are “happy” with their homes, while just 33% or 1 out of 3 said they were not happy with their living environment.

Do you believe the U.S. Congress will be successful in solving the nation’s real estate crisis?

No   –   81% Yes   –   19%

An over-whelming majority of those surveyed said they believe the U.S. Congress will fail in its attempt to solve the nation’s real estate crisis. Some 81% of those surveyed online said they believe Congressional efforts will fail.

Only 19% said they believe Congress will be successful solving the crisis during the April survey, which ended April 21st after a two week period of sampling online. The survey received the largest number of votes since Housing Predictor started taking surveys more than a year and a half ago, demonstrating the public’s anxiety over the nation’s real estate crisis.

The disappointing results echo Americans declining confidence in their political system. A series of other Congressional debacles, including failures to deal with Social Security and immigration reform followed the disastrous outcome of the federal government’s handling of Hurricane Katrina.

When do you plan on buying real estate?

Within 6 months  – 36% Within 1 year  – 21% Within 2 years  – 16% More than 2 years  – 14% More than 5 years  – 13%
Plenty of Pent Up Buyer Demand

An amazing 73% of respondents said they were planning on buying real estate within at least 2 years, indicating there is plenty of demand for real estate on the part of potential buyers.

But the breakdown given the lengthy list of time lines is even more interesting. Some 36% plan on buying within the next 6 months, 21% within one year and 16% with a time frame of no more than 2 years. Fourteen percent said more than two years and 13% more than five years.

The survey was conducted during the month of March and ended April 7, 2008.

Do you think the U.S. economy is headed for an economic depression?

Survey Shows Economic Depression Likely

The majority of Americans believe the U.S. economy is headed for an economic depression, according to a new Housing Predictor survey.

However, the poll shows Americans are far from decisive in their judgment of whether the nation’s economy will fall into a depression. Some 53% of those surveyed online say the economy is headed for a depression, while 47% believe the economy will not fall into a depression. The online survey was conducted during the month of February, ending the 22nd.

There have been six depressions in the U.S. since 1837, including the Great Depression of 1929 when the stock market crashed. Only an estimated five percent of all Americans believed the Great Depression would occur at the time, which indicates major economic turmoil is underway today.

The narrow six-percent difference may also indicate that Americans are divided on whether they believe the economy will fall into a depression. However, worsening economic conditions, including rising unemployment and higher grocery prices may attribute to the destabilization of the economy. The survey was conducted over a three week period providing enough time to be accepted by social scientific researchers as valid.

Housing deflation is taking place in the over-whelming majority of real estate markets in the U.S. with only 60 markets forecast to appreciate during the year by Housing Predictor. One hundred and ninety-one are forecast to deflate. However, more than two dozen local housing markets forecast to appreciate are presently under review and may be downgraded.

Yes  –  53%

No    –  47%

Troubled by the mortgage mess the majority of real estate markets in the U.S. are in at least a slowdown. How long do you think it will take for market conditions to improve?

Troubled by the mortgage mess more than two-thirds of those surveyed in the latest Housing Predictor poll say that it will take at least two years for the real estate market to improve.

A large majority of 68% said they believe it will take at least two years. Some even feel it will take longer for the housing market to improve, despite the Fed cutting interest rates.

The majority of real estate markets in the U.S. are in at least a slowdown, and many are in a real estate recession after years of record low interest rates and massive mortgage fraud along with a mortgage industry that provided more new creative financing for home mortgages than ever before in the nation’s history.

6 months  –  10%

1 year   –      23%

2 years   –     31%

3 years   –     15%

Longer than 3 years   –   21%