Americans’ Views on Housing

We here at the Landmark Blog love a good survey.  They’re fun to take, fun to read and fun to send to each other. But when a survey is about housing and comes in an already-complete, research study format by a major American organization like the Urban Land Institute, we’re all eyes.

The Urban Land Institute released a study in March of this year entitled “Americans’ Views on their Communities, Housing, and Transportation. “ Why they chose not to capitalize one T in the title is beyond us, but the results are even more fascinating.  As the title mentions, the study covers housing, transportation and communities, but we’ll focus mainly on housing.  If you want a little more detail without having to read all 60 pages, we recommend reading the 3 page executive summary.  If you want another spin on it, check out this recent New York Times article.

The immediate gist of the study is that Americans are happy with their housing and communities, and not just most; we’re talking 9 out of 10 Americans saying that they are satisfied with their quality of life and that they do not have a fear of their communities deteriorating; take that, doomsday preppers and zombie apocalypse aficionados.   Even the Americans who are least satisfied with where they live are the most optimistic and feel that their communities are on the upswing.

One of the best parts of this survey is that the executive summary refers to the housing summary as “our castles.” Perpetuating that American dream with verbiage as well as statistics, the study says point blank, “most of us like where we live.”  The study also shows that Americans like to live in single family homes and that two thirds of the public are living that dream currently.

The study sounds rather hopeful in a number of areas, with the lure of homeownership being a particular point of interest. “Seven in ten believe that buying a home is a good investment for them, even in the aftermath of the housing and mortgage difficulties the nation has witnessed in the last few years.”  Belief rides high on American soil as well with seven in ten renters being hopeful that in the next five years, they will also join the ranks of homeownership.

In the aforementioned aftermath of the housing crisis on American soil and juxtaposed against recent revelations about the fabrications of the current Chinese housing industry,  the idea that Americans are still moving and expecting bigger and better homes bolsters confidence in the continuing housing recovery.  If that spirit and sentiment can endure through the last decade, it looks like one could get away with not feeling foolish for embracing a sense of optimism about the rise of the American economy like a phoenix from the ashes of its former state.

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