- A new quarterly consumer survey from the National Association of Realtors found that more than 75% of renters, if they were looking in the next six months, would prefer to buy a single-family home, while 79% of renters would buy that home in the suburbs.
- The survey also found that fewer renters think now is a good time to buy a home, and fewer homeowners said they believe that it’s a good time to sell. According to the survey, less than 50% of households surveyed believe the economy is improving, and most would stay in a similar area if they purchased a home in the next six months, with the exception of urbanites who said they would most like to live in an area within 20 miles of the city.
- The NAR said its survey data can only lead to one conclusion — most consumers, at least the ones in the survey, would prefer a home in the suburbs. In response to this, Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, said homebuilders should "double their focus" to build single-family homes to avoid an even tighter inventory problem.
An NAR report earlier this month revealed that more millennials, although famous for being urban renters, are considering a home purchase in the suburbs, primarily because of the expense of a city home.
"The American Dream for most consumers is not a cramped, 500-square-foot condo in the middle of the city, but instead a larger home within close proximity to the jobs and entertainment an urban area provides," Yun said in a release. He continued that the rise in home valuation and equity has made the prospect of selling a home attractive, but rising home prices have lessened the desire to buy.
Inventory concerns continue to plague the housing market, as rising prices and limited housing supply have continued to be the main factors cited as holding back stronger growth in the residential sector.
Yun’s pleas for more housing joins those of San Francisco activists who have said that zoning is really at the heart of city's crisis. According to Kriston Capps of The Atlantic’s CityLab, the city’s wealthiest residents are preventing the construction of new housing, critical to relieving pressure on supply, which is forcing development to "spill over" into poorer neighborhoods where high-priced luxury housing forces long-time residents out.