In the past year, the Sacramento housing marketing faced one of the highest foreclosure rates in the nation, and compared to the same time last year, Sacramento’s median home prices have dropped 30.9 percent (California Association of Realtors, March 24, 2008). Yet a new Sacramento State survey shows that in spite of 79 percent of Sacramento area residents feeling the current housing market is a problem, 63 percent believe 2008 is a good time to buy a house.
The survey, conducted by Sacramento State Professor Amy Liu and her students through the University’s Institute for Social Research, showed that 75 percent of area residents think it will take at least two years before the Sacramento housing market will recover from the problems caused by home foreclosures and sub-prime mortgages. A majority of residents (58 percent) also say they worry at least some of the time that their total family income will not be enough to pay for expenses and bills.
Because of the decline in home prices this past year, homes have become more affordable, and only 36 percent of residents view affordable housing as a big problem, while 26 percent consider it to be somewhat of a concern. This differs sharply from opinions expressed regarding the housing market between 2002 and 2006. During that time, the availability of affordable housing was one of the top two or three big problems in the region (51% in 2006, 48 percent in 2005, 50 percent in 2004, 51 percent in 2003 and 47 percent in 2002).
Other findings include:
- 25 percent of residents don’t know how to get the necessary help to address mortgage and foreclosure-related problems. This is especially the case for homeowners with a household income of less than $30,000 (41 percent) and Hispanics (36 percent).
- Of the 63 percent of area residents who believe 2008 is a good time to buy a house, 47 percent say now is a good time and 16 percent indicate six months from now would also be a good time; this is especially true for those with a household income of $100,000 or more.
- 30 percent of residents living in the City of Sacramento worry about paying bills and expenses all or most of the time; this differs among those who live in other places in Sacramento County (21 percent) and El Dorado (26 percent), Placer (19 percent) and Yolo (25 percent) counties.
The survey was a computer-assisted telephone survey of 1,200 randomly selected adults from Sacramento, Yolo, Placer and El Dorado counties. It has a margin of error of 3 percent.
More information is available by contacting Liu at firstname.lastname@example.org or (916) 278-7572. For media assistance, contact Sacramento State’s Public Affairs office at (916) 278-6156.