WHO SAYS THAT HOUSING IS NOT STILL A GREAT INVESTMENT

Despite declines in home prices nationwide, 62 percent of surveyed consumers said buying a home in today’s market is a good investment over the next 10 years, according to a survey from mortgage lender Bank of America.

Global market research firm Socratic Technologies Inc. conducted the monthly survey, called the Mortgage Index Study, on behalf of Bank of America.

Affordability did appear to be a priority for those survey respondents considering a home purchase in the next 12 months: 62 percent of those respondents had sought advice from a lender or used online tools to help them determine affordable monthly mortgage payments, Bank of America reported.

And overall, respondents’ most popular piece of advice to loved ones considering buying a home? Half would warn them “to not buy more house than they can afford.”

Survey respondents were more likely to have higher incomes than the general population. In 2010, the median household income was $50,046, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, while more than three out of five survey respondents (61 percent) reported a gross annual income at or above $50,000. Thirty-one percent had an income of less than $50,000 and 8 percent declined to state their income.

The firm surveyed 1,104 consumers nationwide between Sept. 1-27, 2011. To be included in the survey, respondents had to be 21 or older, a primary or joint financial decision-maker in their household, and either currently have a home loan or plan to obtain one in the next 12 months.

Respondents were about evenly split by gender; 72 percent were married; 65 percent had obtained at least a bachelor’s degree; and 81 percent were white or Caucasian. Just over half, 52 percent, were employed full time; 12 percent identified as a “homemaker”; 11 percent were retired; 9 percent were employed part time; and 8 percent were self-employed. Only 6 percent were unemployed.

The vast majority of respondents (86 percent) were homeowners. Twelve percent of respondents rented and 2 percent lived with family.

Of those planning to purchase a home in the next year, 74 percent said they plan to use their personal savings for the down payment.