Survey Shows Obama Falls Short on Housing Market Promises

Even in Tough Times, 77 Percent of Americans View Homeownership as a Part of Their Own Personal American Dream

A national survey released yesterday by Trulia shows that many Americans feel that President Barack Obama has not lived up to the hope he created during his campaign and his first 30 days in office. In Trulia’s latest American Dream survey conducted online on its behalf by Harris Interactive from January 19-21, 2009 President Barack Obama scored considerably lower marks on the topic of restoring the American dream of home ownership compared to a survey conducted February 20-24, 2009 after his first 30 days in office.

The current survey found that 37 percent of Americans gave President Obama a grade of “D” or “F” on the decisions he’s made towards restoring the American dream of home ownership compared to only 22 percent in the February 2009 survey. Additionally, 54 percent gave him a grade of “A” or “B” in February 2009 compared to only 37 percent in January 2010. Despite these lower grades, and the troubles that have continued to plague the U.S. housing market, the survey found that the “American Dream” of homeownership continues to be alive and well with more than three out of four Americans considering owning a home as a part of achieving their personal American dream.

“I am thrilled to see that the American dream of homeownership is alive. If the dream had died we would be in a lot of trouble,” said Pete Flint, CEO and co-founder of Trulia. “Everyone realizes there is no easy fix and we have a long road ahead. Until there is a reversal in unemployment and the growing number of home foreclosures, the U.S. real estate market will continue to see significant volatility. I agree with the results of our survey that job creation and job security have to be the President’s top priority.”

President Obama’s Report Card

Democrats currently rate President Obama’s performance higher than Republicans, but both downgraded the President’s performance in the January 2010 survey compared to the survey Trulia conducted in February 2009. The current survey shows that “A” ratings from Democrats decreased by 19 percentage points and a 3 percentage point decrease from Republicans. Additionally, “F” ratings from Democrats increased by 3 percentage points and by 13 percentage points from Republicans.

Jan. 2010 Grades Republican Democrat All Adults
“A” 2% 19% 11%
“B” 10% 43% 26%
“C” 24% 25% 26%
“D” 27% 7% 16%
“F” 37% 6% 22%
Feb. 2009 Grades Republican Democrat All Adults
“A” 5% 38% 21%
“B” 18% 42% 33%
“C” 31% 14% 24%
“D” 21% 3% 10%
“F” 24% 3% 12%

Priorities Going Forward

Democrats and Republicans agree on the areas President Obama needs to focus on in 2010 to stabilize the U.S. real estate market. Creating jobs and job security continues to be at the top of the list with 62 percent of adults referencing it as a key priority for the President. With foreclosures reaching record levels in 2009 and expected to grow even more this year, it’s not surprising that 45 percent of adults included this as an important area of focus. Rounding out the top three priorities for President Obama is bringing/keeping low interest rates at 39 percent. Only 27 percent of Americans surveyed believe extending the home buying tax credit through the end of 2010 should be a key initiative to help stabilize the housing market.

Jan 2010 Focus Republican Democrat All Adults
Create Jobs & Job Security 58% 65% 62%
Reduce Foreclosures 37% 54% 45%
Lower/Keep Low Interest Rates 43% 43% 39%
Extend Home Buying Tax Credit Through 2010 24% 32% 27%
Other 14% 4% 11%

This sentiment was also echoed on Trulia Voices Community, with many users feeling that President Obama tried to do too much, and that the key to fixing the economy and housing market will be to focus on creating new jobs and job security.

Positive and Negative Views

The majority of Americans surveyed were unaffected by the events that have transpired during the past year in the housing market, with 60 percent saying their view towards homeownership is unchanged. Slightly more of those surveyed have a more pessimistic than positive outlook with 21 percent saying they have at least a somewhat more negative view towards owning a home compared to 20 percent having at least a somewhat more positive view.


Survey Methodology
The Trulia American Dream housing study is conducted online periodically by Harris Interactive on behalf of Trulia. Harris Interactive® fielded this current study on behalf of Trulia from January 19-21, 2010 via its QuickQuerySM online omnibus service, interviewing a nationwide sample of 2,232 U.S. adults age 18 years or older, of whom 1,523 were homeowners and 614 were renters, and 702 were Democrats and 601 were Republicans. Results were weighted as needed for age, sex, race/ethnicity, education, region and household income. Propensity score weighting was also used to adjust for respondents’ propensity to be online. No estimates of theoretical sampling error can be calculated; a full methodology is available.
Harris Interactive® also fielded the February 2009 survey on behalf of Trulia from February 20-24, 2009 via its QuickQuery(SM) online omnibus service, interviewing a nationwide sample of 2,076 U.S. adults age 18 years or older, of whom 1,418 were homeowners and 595 were renters, and 732 were Democrats and 573 were Republicans . Results were weighted as needed for age, sex, race/ethnicity, education, region and household income. Propensity score weighting was also used to adjust for respondents’ propensity to be online. No estimates of theoretical sampling error can be calculated; a full methodology is available

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