When surveyed, Americans who currently don’t own a home consistently say they’d like to buy one someday. For example, the National Association of Realtors’ Housing Opportunities and Market Experience survey asked non-homeowners whether homeownership is part of their American Dream, and 75 percent of respondents said it was. This means there are a lot of people who’d like to buy a home.
What factors influence their decision to buy now or wait? It may come as no surprise that money leads the list. Most non-homeowners, when asked why they don’t currently own a home, said they couldn’t afford a mortgage. Other reasons included needing the flexibility that comes with renting and a lifestyle that wasn’t compatible with ownership.
Similarly, when asked what might spur a future decision to buy, respondents said that having more money would motivate them to become a homebuyer. But an improved financial situation wasn’t the only thing that could encourage them to buy. An almost equal number of respondents said a lifestyle change like marriage or retirement might push them to pursue homeownership.