Election Coverage 2012: Do homeowners who bought in 2008 feel better off today?

With election season in full swing, there’s been a lot of talk about how the past four years have gone, and whether American people feel “better off” today than in 2008.

While Republicans contend that the American people are worse off, and recently took to Twitter to prove their point – promoting the hashtag #AreYouBetterOff (with mixed results), Democrats are taking the opposite side (it wouldn’t be politics if we all agreed!), saying that compared to four years ago, Americans are absolutely better off today

But with the housing crisis as the elephant in the room in both the recent GOP and Democratic conventions – the big topic neither party has made part of their official platform – we thought it would make sense to ask the people who bought a home in 2008 if they feel better off today.

And here’s what they said:

  • 61% of homeowners who bought a home with ZipRealty in 2008 stated they were neutral, better or significantly better off today.
  • 94% of those homeowners still own the same home they bought four years ago.
  • And while 73% said that they believe their home had decreased in value, 85% said they viewed their purchase as a medium to long-term investment, with 60% planning to live in the home for over seven years – plenty of time for the market to recover.

“The results of this survey are telling, given the hit that the housing industry has experienced over the past four years. Despite widely-experienced declines in home prices over the last few years, a large percentage of ZipRealty homeowners who responded still feel satisfied with regard to their home ownership.  These folks look at their homes as a long-term investment and a place where they’ve settled down,” said Lanny Baker, CEO of ZipRealty. “Beyond the financial dynamic, homeownership brings substantial social benefits for families, communities and the U.S. as a whole. Homeownership has been an essential part of the ‘American Dream’ for decades and the results of our recent survey substantiate that owning a home remains today a very satisfying proposition for the majority of consumers.”