Wednesday, May 25, 2011

More Negative Sentiment for Homeownership

by Calculated Risk on 5/25/2011 09:51:00 AM

During the housing busts that followed the California housing bubbles of the late '70s and late '80s, there came a period when sentiment for homeownership changed. The evidence was anecdotal, but it was not uncommon to hear people say owning a home was "dumb".

So one thing I've been looking for is a change in sentiment. Earlier posts on this with anecdotal evidence: Housing: Feeling the Hate, More "Hate" for Housing, and More "Hate" for Homeownership.

A shift in sentiment doesn't mean housing prices have bottomed - it just means the market is getting closer. In previous busts it seemed like negative sentiment lasted for a few years.

Last week Trulia and RealtyTrac released a survey of when Americans thought the housing market would recover. (ht Keith Jurow, Keith is far more bearish than I am bearish).

Here is the survey: Trulia and RealtyTrac Survey Reveals 54 Percent of American Adults Now Believe Housing Recovery Remains Unlikely Until 2014 or Later

As more cities across the nation experience double dips in home prices , more than half (54 percent) of U.S. adults believe recovery in the housing market will not happen until 2014 or later, according to the survey released today. In a previous survey conducted six months ago , 42 percent of American adults said they thought the market would turn around by 2012 or had already turned around. Now, only 23 percent continue to think this will happen.

When American Adults Believe Housing Market Will Recover
Apr-11Nov-10% Change
Already Recovered[1]5%5%0%
By the end of 20113%10%-70%
201215%27%-44%
201324%24%0%
2014 or Later54%34%59%

Clearly there has been a sharp shift in when people think the housing market will "recover". Expecting a recovery is somewhat different from asking when people will want to buy, but I think they are somewhat related - if non-owners think the market won't bottom for several years, they would probably also say they won't buy soon too. Just a little more evidence of a shift in sentiment ...