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The election is tanking home sales

By Real Estate Economy Watch   |   Sept. 21, 2012 at 5:27 PM   |   Comments

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When it comes to buying a home, 25 percent of Americans would like to know who the next president will be before they would feel totally comfortable putting their money down, according to the survey conducted in early September. Some 13 percent said that if they were considering purchasing a home, they would delay their purchase until after the election because of the uncertainty it creates. Another 12 percent said they would take the election into consideration, and it might cause them to delay buying a home.

“It’s understandable that a considerable number of people say the upcoming election would give them pause for thought,” said Rick Allen, chief operating officer of Mortgage Marvel. “There has been speculation that tax policies could change depending upon who wins. Some have even indicated that the longstanding deduction for mortgage interest could be eliminated. It appears that mortgage interest rates will remain low for the foreseeable future, so there’s no pressure on people to act before rates rise. In such an environment, I can see that cautious people would take a wait-and-see attitude before making a home purchase.”

Overall, men’s and women’s answers tracked closely across all age groups. As men’s ages increased, they became less concerned about the possible effects of the election. In the male 18-34 age group, 42 percent said the upcoming election would have no effect on the timing of their purchase. At age 55 plus, 57 percent gave the same response. Fifty-two percent of women age 18-34 said the election would have no effect on their decision, and that increased only to 59 percent at age 55 plus.

Regionally, the South had the highest percentage of people — 17 percent — who said they would delay buying a home because of uncertainty attributable to the election. Another 12 percent in the South said the upcoming election might cause them to delay buying a home. The West had the greatest number of people — 61 percent — who said the upcoming election would have no effect for them on the timing of a home purchase.
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