Studies Show the Most Valuable Benefits of Homeownership are Non-financial

With demand at record highs across the country, there is little doubt that homeownership is a foundational part of the American Dream. As we look back on more than a year of sheltering in our homes, having a place of our own is more important than ever. While financial benefits are always a key aspect of homeownership, today, homeowners rank the non-financial and personal benefits with even higher value.

Recently, two national surveys revealed the reasons homeownership is such an important part of life. The top three personal benefits of homeownership noted by respondents in Unison’s 2021 report on The State of the American Homeowner are:

  • 91% – feel secure, stable, or successful owning a home
  • 70% – feel emotionally attached to the homes that have kept them safe over the past year
  • 51% – call homeownership a “key part of their life”

This survey, which covers multiple areas such as homeowner retirement funding, mortgage forbearance, and reasons for refinancing, also includes distributions across age demographics to highlight the different experiences of Millenials, Gen Xers, and Boomers.

Similar sentiments were further put forward by the most recent National Housing Survey from Fannie Mae, which also shows that the top three reasons Americans value homeownership have nothing to do with direct financial returns. Those surveyed were given a list of feelings and accomplishments that are associated with or impacted by where we live. They were then asked, “To achieve this, are you better off owning or better off renting?” The top three points from the list that respondents said homeownership could help them achieve were:

  • 91% – control over what you do with your living space
  • 90% – a sense of privacy and security
  • 89% – a good place for your family to raise your children

While there were a substantial number of indicated financial benefits, such as saving for retirement and building wealth, additional non-financial advantages of homeownership revealed by the survey include feeling engaged in a community, having flexibility in future decisions, and experiencing less stress.

Bottom Line

Although financial incentives for homeownership will always exist, over the past year, the non-financial sides have quickly emerged as having the most value. After a year full of pandemic-driven challenges and changes, those ready to upgrade may finally be at a place to list, freeing up inventory for other price points. Connect with all of your clients today and emphasize the multiple values that accompany home ownership.

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