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Thursday, June 23 2011

Americans are more optimistic about their home buying prospects than residents of other countries, with nearly two-thirds of Americans saying now is a good time to buy a home, according to the new Genworth International Mortgage Trends Report.

The local economic outlook, concerns about property affordability, and worries about future unemployment are among the issues listed by survey respondents as obstacles to their purchasing a home.

Yet these economic concerns have not translated into excessive mortgage stress among U.S. home buyers. According to the survey, 87% of Americans who bought their first home in the past 12 months expected to easily meet their mortgage repayment obligations in the coming year, a slight improvement over the 85% who comfortably met their mortgage payments in the 12 months prior to the survey period.

Due to affordability issues — high home prices, higher costs of living, or fear of rising interest rates — the average age of first-time home buyers has risen in all countries except India over the last 40 years. The average age at which a person in the U.S. was able to purchase a first home rose from 27.3 in the 1970s to 31.6 in the 2000s.

“The U.S. is the most optimistic among all the markets surveyed about buying a home,” said Kevin Schneider, Genworth U.S. Mortgage Insurance president. “Nearly two-thirds of Americans surveyed believe now is a good time to buy a home … We hope that federal and state lawmakers recognize this pent-up demand and enact policies that foster prudent home ownership.”

Some key findings from other nations surveyed:

  • Consumer confidence is a major factor in home buying. Developing countries are especially optimistic. India was the most positive country, with two thirds of Indian respondents feeling good about their national economy, followed by Mexico, where 42% of respondents were optimists.
  • Indebtedness colors how households around the world view their financial situation and how they approach buying a home. Western countries tended to have higher levels of debt, but were also more comfortable taking on debt.
  • In almost all of the countries surveyed, housing affordability is keeping first-home buyers out of the property market. The reasons for affordability challenges range from the rising costs of living, a fear of interest rate rises, lack of housing availability to high house prices.

Source: Genworth Financial



Read more: http://www.houselogic.com/news/articles/two-thirds-americans-think-now-good-time-buy-home/#ixzz1P5Wvfrzb
Posted by: Rolando Trentini AT 08:00 am   |  Permalink   |  Email

The Trentini Team
F.C. Tucker EMGE REALTORS®
7820 Eagle Crest Bvd., Suite 200
Evansville, IN 47715
Office: (812) 479-0801
Cell: (812) 499-9234
Email: Rolando@RolandoTrentini.com


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