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Median Price of Homes Purchased Rose 2.3 Percent to $110,000, 2011 American Housing Survey Finds

WASHINGTON, July 11, 2013, Homeowners in the U.S. paid a median price of $110,000 for their homes, according to a 2011 American Housing Survey profile released today. This is an increase of 2.3 percent from the $107,500 reported in the 2009 survey. The median purchase price of homes constructed in the past four years was higher at $235,000, down 2.1 percent from the $240,000 reported for new construction in 2009.

The profile released today provides information on the nation’s housing costs, mortgages and a variety of other physical and financial characteristics about housing in the U.S. The statistics come from the American Housing Survey, which is sponsored by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau, and is the most comprehensive housing survey in the United States. National data are collected every odd-numbered year and metropolitan area data are collected on a rotating basis. The Census Bureau also released profiles for 29 selected metro areas.

“The last five years remind us how central housing is to each of us personally, to the fiscal health of our cities and counties, and the national economy. For 40 years, the American Housing Survey has provided a unique set of data that connects the detailed characteristics of who is living in homes to the detailed characteristics of the homes themselves,” said Kurt Usowski, HUD’s Deputy Assistant Secretary for Economic Affairs. “From the American Housing Survey, we can see why people chose to move, how often homes need repairs, and the extent to which housing costs are outpacing income growth. All this information can help inform policymaking around continued recovery in the U.S. and in metropolitan areas around the country.”

“We are pleased to have the opportunity to collaborate with HUD on these profiles,” said the Census Bureau’s Arthur Cresce, Jr., Assistant Division Chief for Housing Characteristics. “Analysts in government and business study the nation’s housing very closely and the AHS yields a wealth of information that can be used by professionals in nearly every field for planning, decision-making, and market research.”

Some highlights for the U.S. include:

Physical Characteristics

  • The median year occupied homes were built in the U.S. was 1974.
  • Nationally, piped gas was the most prevalent home heating source, used by 50.4 percent of occupied homes. Electricity was used by 35.3 percent.
  • Among owner-occupied homes in the U.S., 46.3 percent had working carbon monoxide detectors.
  • Among all U.S. homes, 72.5 percent of owner-occupied units had central air.

Financial Characteristics

  • Median monthly expenditures for homeowners in the U.S. totaled $151 for real estate taxes, $121 for electricity and $58 for property insurance.
  • Among U.S. owner-occupied homes, 65.4 percent had a regular and/or home equity mortgage and 23.4 percent had a refinanced primary mortgage.
  • The median monthly mortgage payment for homeowners was $1,015 in 2011.

For a complete set of tables from the American Housing Survey, definitions, sample design, and more, see <http://www.census.gov/housing/ahs/>.

U.S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development

U.S. Census Bureau

Brian Sullivan

Robert Bernstein

Office of Public Affairs

Public Information Office

202-402-7527

301-763-3030

brian.sullivan@hud.gov

pio@census.gov

CB13-125
Press kit

SOURCE:

U.S. Census Bureau
http://www.census.gov

 

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KPMG Survey: Corporate Tax Leaders Say U.S. Business Tax Reform And Transfer Pricing Environment Are Top Global Tax Concerns

Survey Results Issued In Connection With KPMG’s U.S. Tax Summit

NEW YORK, June 4, 2013, The potential for U.S. federal business tax reform and the rigorous pursuit of transfer pricing adjustments by foreign countries are the top global tax concerns facing senior U.S. tax professionals, according to a survey issued today by U.S. audit, tax and advisory firm KPMG LLP in connection with its 2013 U.S. Tax Summit this week in Orlando, Fla.

“It’s clear from our survey that tax department leaders are focused on how to manage in the persistent and active regulatory environment in transfer pricing and are also devoting increasing attention to how changes in U.S. tax legislation will affect their global operational decisions,” said Jeffrey C. LeSage , vice chairman of KPMG’s U.S. Tax practice. “We believe that these and other key tax issues will present U.S. companies with challenges and opportunities as the global business landscape continues to evolve.”

The survey of almost 250 U.S. senior tax professionals — conducted prior to KPMG’s 2013 U.S. Tax Summit, taking place June 3-5 — also polled companies on tax cloud initiatives, the tax impact of import and export activities, sustainability, and legislation on taxation of Internet sales.

According to the survey, 26 percent cited the pursuit of transfer pricing adjustments as their greatest global tax concern, while 24 percent pointed to the potential for U.S. federal business tax reform. Other top concerns included the increasing number of countries aggressively pursuing ‘permanent establishment’ as an approach to asserting a jurisdiction’s taxing authority and the lack of a uniform approach by countries (15 percent) and challenges related to obtaining meaningful data that enables a company to project its annual effective tax rate with confidence (12 percent).

Tax Not Adequately Involved With Cloud

The survey also revealed that just 12 percent of tax departments are involved in early-stage  discussions around cloud-related business transformation and almost one-third (30 percent) said when it comes to decisions on cloud-enabled business transformation their department is still being left out of the decision-making process.

“The feedback related to cloud business activities is particularly eye-catching,” said Laura Newinski, national managing partner-Tax at KPMG, “because we’ve seen that many companies that leave tax departments out of early cloud-related discussions also leave money on the table when it comes to the ultimate return-on-investments (ROI) of their cloud projects.”

In another interesting finding, 4 in 10 tax executives had not yet evaluated the potential impact of the Marketplace Fairness Act of 2013, despite the Senate’s recent passage of the bill, which would allow states to require online and other out-of-state merchants to collect and remit sales and use taxes on products and services they sell.  Only 5 percent said they had evaluated the legislation and believe it will have a significant impact.

“Companies that may be affected by the potential changes to the taxation of online and remote sales need to pay close attention to the legislation and new tax compliance obligations that may be imposed on them,” KPMG’s LeSage said. “If passed, the bill could be the most significant game changer in U.S. state and local tax in years.”

Legislative & Regulatory Impact on Trade & Customs

When asked what new regulatory, legislative or policy development has had the most impact on their company’s global import and export activities, nearly one in four respondents (21 percent) cited aggressive enforcement of customs valuation laws associated with related party pricing and the ‘dutiability’ of  royalties.

And with regard to tax’s role in a company’s sustainability strategy, more than one-third (37 percent) of respondents report that they have no significant role as a tax executive in implementing that strategy for their companies.  Rather, 28 percent said their role involved strategic implementation to managing the overall after-tax return of sustainability projects.

“As all of these issues spotlight, the challenge for tax departments in the future will be to stay out in front of developments and make the case that their insights can add value to their company’s overall business and bottom line in light of rapidly evolving needs,” said LeSage.

The KPMG “pulse” survey, conducted May 16-23, reflects the responses of 242 senior tax professionals including tax directors, tax managers, vice presidents of tax, chief tax officers and tax analysts.

About KPMG LLP

KPMG LLP, the audit, tax and advisory firm (www.us.kpmg.com), is the U.S. member firm of KPMG International Cooperative (“KPMG International”).  KPMG International’s member firms have 152,000 professionals, including more than 8,600 partners, in 156 countries.

Contact:

Robert Nihen/Bridget Carroll

KPMG LLP

201-307-8296/201-505-6501

rnihen@kpmg.com;   bccarroll@kpmg.com

SOURCE:

KPMG LLP

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Robert Half Global Survey Reports on Financial Services Hiring Environment

Recruiting Difficulties, Retention Concerns Emerge as Common Themes

  • Nearly nine in 10 (89%) financial services executives surveyed globally find it either somewhat or very challenging to find skilled financial services professionals
  • Globally, 83% of institutions are either somewhat or very concerned about losing top performers to other opportunities
  • Demand is strongest for financial services professionals with accounting and finance expertise, operations support experience

TORONTO, April 30, 2013, Already faced with a changing regulatory landscape globally, the financial services sector may have yet another challenge: finding and keeping good employees. In a recent Robert Half study, nearly nine in 10 (89 percent) executives surveyed in seven countries reported recruiting difficulties, and 83 percent said they are concerned about losing top performers to other opportunities.

The survey was developed by Robert Half, the world’s first and largest specialized staffing firm, and conducted by an independent research firm. It is based on responses from 1,100 financial services executives, including finance directors, chief financial officers and chief operations officers, across seven countries: Canada, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Singapore, the United Kingdom and the United States.

“While some areas within financial services institutions have seen cutbacks, other more profitable product lines are receiving further investment which has resulted in additional hiring,” said Neil Owen , global practice director of financial services recruitment for Robert Half . “This is creating challenges in finding the requisite staff to capitalize on emerging opportunities. Competition for the industry’s top talent continues to intensify for middle-office and support roles, particularly accounting and finance, as well as operations positions.”

Recruiting Challenges

Eighty-nine per cent of executives surveyed said it is very or somewhat difficult to find skilled financial services professionals today. Talent shortages are especially acute in Hong Kong, where 95% of respondents cited difficulties. Even in France, which had the lowest level of difficulty, 82% of executives reported recruiting challenges.

When asked how challenging it is to find skilled financial   services professionals

Very
challenging
Somewhat
challenging
Net
challenging
All countries 33% 56% 89%
Hong Kong 38% 57% 95%
Singapore 49% 45% 93%
Germany 36% 55% 91%
UK 29% 62% 91%
Canada 28% 62% 90%
US 30% 54% 84%
France 15% 67% 82%

Added Owen, “Institutions around the world need staff who can manage fundamental business needs, drive profitability and ensure compliance mandates are met. Building a team with these skills has become increasingly difficult as firms face situations in which the demand for skilled professionals often outweighs the supply”.

Employers’ Retention Worries

With the hiring environment improving for financial services professionals who can fill roles in areas such as accounting and finance, operations support, revenue generation, and risk and compliance, employers around the globe are worried about losing their best and brightest to other opportunities. Eighty-three percent of financial services executives are at least somewhat concerned about their ability to hang on to top performers this year, the survey found.

The greatest worries appear to be in Hong Kong and Singapore, where 93% and 92% of respondents, respectively, cited concerns about losing good employees. In the seven countries surveyed, at least 76% of respondents expressed some level of concern.

When asked how   concerned they are about losing top performers
Very
concerned
Somewhat
concerned
Net
concerned
All countries 31% 52% 83%
Hong Kong 40% 53% 93%
Singapore 50% 42% 92%
Germany 21% 66% 87%
Canada 22% 62% 84%
UK 24% 59% 83%
US 29% 48% 77%
France 21% 55% 76%

“A combination of factors, including heightened demand for skilled specialists in financial services, the growing need for regulatory expertise and operational changes taking place in the sector, may exacerbate current retention challenges,” Owen said. “Employers will need to focus on competitive compensation, progressive perks and rewarding career paths to keep their best people.”

About Robert Half
Founded in 1948, Robert Half is the world’s first and largest specialized staffing firm. The Menlo Park, Calif.-based company has more than 350 staffing locations worldwide and offers online job search services on its divisional websites, all of which can be accessed at www.roberthalf.ca. Follow Robert Half on Twitter at twitter.com/RobertHalf_CAN, and gain insights on the latest financial hiring and salary trends at www.roberthalf.ca/salarycentre.

SOURCE:

Robert Half Canada

 

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Deloitte: Shoppers’ Belts Remain Tight Despite Economic Improvement

National brand loyalty slides third consecutive year; consumers want household and grocery clicks before trips

NEW YORK, April 16, 2013, Even as the economy improves, 94 percent of Americans indicate they will remain cautious and keep their spending for food, beverage and household goods at its current level, according to Deloitte’s 2013 American Pantry Study.

More than nine in 10 (92 percent) consumers surveyed indicate they have become more resourceful, and 86 percent say they are getting more precise in what they buy — attitudes that have remained consistent in the three years Deloitte has conducted the study, and across income levels.

Despite enduring frugal attitudes, few consumers feel they are making any compromise: More than seven in 10 (72 percent) consumers indicate that, even though they are spending less on household and grocery items, it doesn’t feel like they are sacrificing much, a seven percentage point increase in two years.

Nearly nine in 10 (88 percent) survey respondents report they have found several store brands that they feel are just as good as national brands, and few consumers plan to switch back to national brands: Only 27 percent plan to do so as the economy rebounds, an eight percentage point decline from the previous year.

“One of the most notable year-over-year trends in the study is how embedded frugality has become due to the recession,” said Pat Conroy, vice chairman, Deloitte LLP and consumer products sector leader. “Prudent consumers and improving perceptions about store brands are squeezing national brands’ position. The gap between the few ‘must have’ brands on shoppers’ lists and others on the shelf may be widening, making it more important for brands to differentiate through innovation, quality and performance. Consumer product companies may also consolidate low and mid-level performers and shift investment to the category leaders.”

Brand loyalty declines, shoppers put experimentation on hold

As store brands become more entrenched in the pantry, brand loyalty continues to slide, however consumers appear to be selectively loyal to certain brands.

Brand loyalty dropped for the third consecutive year in the survey. When asked why certain brands are no longer a priority for their households, consumers cited “other brands are available on sale” as the No. 1 reason. However, brands to which consumers are most loyal significantly outpace their lower performing counterparts by 20 or more percentage points on attributes such as performance, experience and trust.

Consumers have also honed in on select brands they will consider. More than eight in 10 (84 percent) consumers say they have a specific set of brands in mind, and will purchase whichever one is on sale. When using coupons, 71 percent indicate they will use them only for items they would have purchased anyway.

Shoppers are also selective about the retail channels where they are willing to purchase certain items. Consumers surveyed shop an average of 2.5 channels in each product category, compared with an average of 5.5 channels (including grocery, mass merchandise, club, drug, convenience, dollar, neighborhood market and online) for all of their food, beverage and personal goods combined.

Loyalty cards’ importance in consumers’ cross-channel shopping has increased, as the number of consumers with three or more grocery loyalty cards has grown from 28 percent in first American Pantry Study in 2010 to 39 percent in the most recent survey.

Additionally, 58 percent of shoppers surveyed use shopper loyalty cards in grocery stores every time they shop, up 14 percentage points in two years, and 30 percent participate in a loyalty program via their smartphone while shopping in a store. Consumers appear to feel a sense of reward from these efforts: Eight in 10 (80 percent) say it is fun to see how much money they can save by using coupons or a shopper loyalty card.

Online options in demand for household goods, grocery; Mobile shopping interest growing fastest among baby boomers

The 2013 American Pantry Study reveals an unmet demand for online shopping options, particularly for in-store pickup and at-home delivery. While 14 percent of shoppers surveyed currently buy consumer products online and pick them up in the store, 43 percent indicate they would like to do so, with strongest demand appearing in food and beverage categories for in-store pickup.

Approximately one in 10 (11 percent) survey respondents purchase online with home delivery, and the number rises to 34 percent among those who would like to do so, primarily for household goods such as laundry soaps and tabletop disposable paper products.

“Consumers are drawn to the convenience of purchasing frequently-used food, beverage and household items online, and brand preferences will likely extend into their online buying habits,” added Conroy. “Consumer product companies can use mobile and online channels to strengthen the functional and experiential brand attributes that translate into conversion and loyalty. They should consider aligning their digital efforts with consumers’ location and context to reach shoppers online and on their phones, blending into their list-making, meal planning, product and price-checking, family activities and health and beauty routines. They may also market channel-specific product offerings and use these platforms to make product suggestions based on target consumers’ prior shopping behaviors.”

The latest American Pantry Study also indicates that interest in mobile technology is growing at a higher rate among baby boomers than younger consumers. Nearly one-quarter (23 percent) of respondents age 45 to 70 indicate they are interested in using mobile coupons they can scan at the checkout, up from 12 percent in last year’s survey, compared with a six percentage point increase among respondents age 21 to 29.

Shoppers surveyed are tapping into their smartphones outside the store nearly as often as they do inside the store. Three in 10 (30 percent) consumers manage a shopping list or recipe while in a store, just three percentage points higher than those who do so offsite during the shopping process.

For more information about the 2013 American Pantry Study, including in-depth survey findings, please visit: http://www.deloitte.com/us/pr/2013APS

About the Survey

The 2013 American Pantry Study was commissioned by Deloitte and conducted online by an independent research company in January 2013. The survey polled a sample of 4,047 consumers and has a margin of error of plus or minus two percentage points.

About Deloitte’s Consumer Products Practice

Deloitte is a leading presence in the consumer products industry, providing audit, consulting, risk management, financial advisory and tax services to more than 80 percent of the Fortune 500 consumer product companies. Delivering insights on the latest consumer product issues, effective practices, technology and operating procedures, Deloitte serves companies across multiple categories including food and beverage, apparel and footwear, personal care, and household products. For more information about Deloitte’s consumer products practice, visit: http://www.deloitte.com/us/consumerproducts

As used in this document, “Deloitte” means Deloitte LLP and its subsidiaries. Please see www.deloitte.com/us/about for a detailed description of the legal structure of Deloitte LLP and its subsidiaries. Certain services may not be available to attest clients under the rules and regulations of public accounting.

SOURCE:

Deloitte
http://www.deloitte.com/us

 

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Mayflower Study Reveals Americans’ Rising Faith in Housing Market

Mayflower reports 16 percent growth in residential moves during Q1

ST. LOUIS, April 3, 2013, With the economy stabilizing, Americans are feeling, once again, the bite of the moving bug.

Nearly half of Americans (47 percent) say they feel more comfortable purchasing a home today than at any other time in the past five years, results of a new survey by Mayflower show. And nearly a third say they are now ready to make a move.

Mayflower, America’s most recognized and trusted moving company, saw evidence of the change in attitude in its own first quarter 2013 results. Compared to first quarter 2012, residential moves were up 16 percent in the historically slowest moving months – January through March.

The new data are also consistent with other national data showing continued rises in existing home prices and sales. Growth appears to be the strongest in the West, where the Mayflower data showed 54 percent of survey respondents are now comfortable purchasing a house.

The data reflect an easing of the wariness Americans have felt in recent years in the aftermath of the bursting of the housing bubble in 2008. Although the average American reports moving six times throughout their adult life, nearly half of Americans (49 percent) say they have put off moving since the bubble burst nearly five years ago. Of those surveyed who had delayed a move, 37 percent cited economic instability as the main reason while another 31 percent blamed the declining real estate market.

Among those now interested in searching for a new home within the next year, the survey showed the desire for a new or better home is the leading motive. Other important motives include a desire for a more attractive neighborhood and the desire to become a homeowner.

Most mobile are the young, with half of Millennials (18-34 years old) more receptive to buying a home than renting and looking to move within the next year. While younger consumers would be more likely to move due to a change in employment or a growing family, half of adults over the age of 65 would consider moving in the next year because of retirement.

Despite the readiness to upgrade their living situations, Americans do acknowledge that moving is a stressful, and often dreaded, life event. Many survey respondents (44 percent) would rather go a week without Internet than move. Another 52 percent would prefer a trip to the dentist, and 15 percent even went as far as to say a root canal would be more enjoyable. Of all the stages of the moving process — planning, scheduling the move, packing, transporting the items and unpacking — 41 percent of people agree that packing is the most stressful part.

To ease the stress of a move, Mayflower offers a variety of services such as full-service moves that include packing, loading and transporting all of a customer’s belongings as well as PC and network assembly and the ability to track your belongings online from doorstep-to-doorstep. People who have had the opportunity to utilize a full-service moving company during their last move almost unanimously (98 percent) say they prefer it.

“We are ready to respond to the surge of moves with services, features and technology that make moves hassle-free and uncomplicated,” said Carl Walter , vice president of Mayflower Moving. “Moving is one of the most stressful and overwhelming times in a person’s life. We offer customers instant on-site estimates and personalized moving websites that significantly simplify the process.”

The peak moving season begins in May and will continue until September. Mayflower offers these tips to help consumers save time and money throughout their move:

  • Move on a weekday. Weekends are the time when most people want to move, but on weekdays, moving trucks often go unused. Book a truck on a Monday or Tuesday and use the weekend to prep for the movers’ arrival.
  • Move in the early part or middle of the month. A lot of household moves happen at the end of the month, which means prices will be higher.
  • If given a choice, avoid moving in the summer, especially June and July. You can save big on your moving costs.
  • Book in advance. Once you know the date of your move, book your mover right away.
  • Do some of your own packing. You can easily pack clothes, blankets, pillows and other non-fragile items yourself. For the breakable items, considering letting professionals pack them to avoid having to replace broken items.
  • Consider a do-it-yourself option like a container. Portable moving and storage containers allow you to pack and load your things at your own pace. A professional will pick up your loaded container and deliver it to your new home, so you don’t ever have to drive a truck.
  • Look for a company that offers cash back options on your real estate transaction. Mayflower’s CityPointe® program allows customers to earn cash back on the price of the home they buy or sell simply by using a realtor from a carefully qualified list of agents. In some cases, the cash back can cover the cost of your move.
  • Bundle other services into the price of your move. Look for a carrier that can arrange for services like cleaning, PC and network assembly and disassembly, and ID theft protection. Bundling these services with the cost of your move can help you save hundreds of dollars compared to hiring separate companies for each service.

Survey Background and Methodology
Respondents to the survey were selected from Research Now’s Consumer panel to reflect a general distribution of the consumer population over 18 years of age. 1,020 respondents completed the survey without knowledge of Mayflower’s sponsorship. Demographic descriptions:

  • Millennial represents people between the ages of 18-34.
  • Gen X represents people between the ages of 35-49.
  • Boomer represents people between the ages of 50-64.
  • Pre-Boomer represents people older than 65 years old.
  • The Research Now panel represents a wide range of consumers, including a subgroup of respondents that have moved within the last five years.

About Mayflower
Mayflower is America’s most recognized and trusted moving company. Together with its sister company Mayflower Containers, Mayflower offers a full range of moving services from full-service to do-it-yourself moving and storage. With headquarters in suburban St. Louis, Mayflower maintains a network of 300 affiliated agencies. For more information about Mayflower Transit and its services, visit Mayflower.com or find us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/MayflowerMoving.

SOURCE:

Mayflower

 

 

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118 Experts Predict Annual Home Value Growth To Exceed Pre-Bubble Rates Over Next Five Years

Survey Benchmark Changes; Path of U.S. Zillow Home Value Index Predicted to Show Cumulative 22 Percent Increase Through 2017

SEATTLE, March 18, 2013, A nationwide panel of more than 100 professional forecasters expects home values to end 2013 up an average of 4.6 percent and rise cumulatively by 22 percent, on average, over the next five years, according to the first quarter Zillow® Home Price Expectations Survey. Additionally, a majority of panelists indicated support for policies that would allow certain underwater homeowners to refinance at today’s low rates.

The survey of 118 economists, real estate experts and investment and market strategists was sponsored by leading real estate information marketplace Zillow, Inc. (NASDAQ: Z) and conducted by Pulsenomics LLC. This is the first survey edition that utilized the U.S. Zillow Home Value Index (ZHVI)[i] as the reference benchmark for the panel’s home price expectations[ii].

Survey respondents predicted home values will rise another 4.2 percent on average in 2014, before moderating somewhat to annual appreciation rates between 3.6 percent and 3.8 percent for 2015, 2016 and 2017. On average, panelists predicted home values to rise 4.1 percent annually from 2013 through 2017, exceeding the pre-housing bubble (1987-1999) average annual appreciation rate of 3.6 percent. This is the first time the predicted average annual growth rate for the next five years has surpassed pre-bubble levels since the survey’s inception three years ago.

“The panel is quite bullish on home prices near-term, considering a pre-bubble average appreciation rate of 3.6 percent per year,” said Zillow Chief Economist Dr. Stan Humphries. “That said, their expectations are a bit shy of the home value gains of 5.5 percent that we saw in 2012, implying some moderation in the pace of gains. The panel expectations are consistent with continued strong home value growth this year fueled by tighter-than-normal inventory of for-sale homes and robust demand attributable to high affordability and a stronger general economy.”

The most optimistic quartile[iii] of panelists predicted a 6.1 percent increase in home values in 2013, on average, while the most pessimistic[iv] predicted an average increase of 3 percent. Through 2017, panelists predicted cumulative home value changes of 22 percent, on average. Expectations for cumulative home value change projections ranged from 34.2 percent among the most optimistic quartile to 11.7 percent among the most pessimistic, on average.

GSE Wind-Down Period and Refinance Options For Underwater Borrowers

The first quarter 2013 Zillow Home Price Expectations Survey asked the panel to indicate their view of a reasonable timeframe for “winding-down” government sponsored enterprises (GSEs) Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac; and to weigh in on the debate over the merits of providing new refinancing options to underwater homeowners who are current on their mortgage payments.

The majority of panelists (59 percent) indicated that a reasonable and appropriate timeframe for winding-down the GSEs is within the next five years. On the opposite ends of the spectrum, 13 percent suggested a timeframe within the next two years, and 10 percent said they believe a period of more than 10 years is sensible.

Existing proposals that would facilitate refinancing of certain underwater borrowers include the Responsible Homeowner Refinancing Act of 2012, sponsored by Sens. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) and Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), and the Rebuilding Equity Act sponsored by Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.). The majority of respondents said they supported these types of policy initiatives.

“More than four of every five supporters of these refinancing proposals said they believe that borrowers who have demonstrated an ability to make their payments in recent years would pose little or no incremental risk to taxpayers if they refinanced. Two-thirds of supporters said they believe that the lower monthly payments would create a significant stimulus for the economy,” said Terry Loebs , founder of Pulsenomics LLC. “But the 41 percent of panel respondents who do not support these plans also hold strong views. More than two-thirds of them said they believe that rewriting loan contracts is bad policy in general, and that lowered monthly payments for borrowers ultimately translate into taxpayer and investor losses.”

Additional details regarding this portion of the survey are available at www.pulsenomics.com.

This is the 17th edition of the Home Price Expectations Survey. It was conducted from Feb. 22, 2013 through March 7, 2013 by Pulsenomics LLC on behalf of Zillow, Inc.

For full survey results and graphics, please visit Zillow Real Estate Research or www.pulsenomics.com.

About Zillow:
Zillow, Inc. (NASDAQ: Z) operates the largest home-related marketplaces on mobile and the Web, with a complementary portfolio of brands and products that help people find vital information about homes, and connect with the best local professionals. In addition, Zillow operates an industry-leading economics and analytics bureau led by Zillow’s Chief Economist Dr. Stan Humphries. Dr. Humphries and his team of economists and data analysts produce extensive housing data and research covering more than 350 markets at Zillow Real Estate Research. Zillow also sponsors the quarterly Zillow Home Price Expectations Survey, which asks more than 100 leading economists, real estate experts and investment and market strategists to predict the path of the Zillow Home Value Index over the next five years. The Zillow, Inc. portfolio includes Zillow.com®, Zillow Mobile, Zillow Mortgage Marketplace, Zillow Rentals, Zillow Digs™, Postlets®, Diverse Solutions®, Buyfolio™, Mortech™ and HotPads™. The company is headquartered in Seattle.

Zillow.com, Zillow, Zestimate, Postlets and Diverse Solutions are registered trademarks of Zillow, Inc. Buyfolio, Mortech, HotPads and Digs are trademarks of Zillow, Inc.

About Pulsenomics:
Pulsenomics LLC is an independent research and consulting firm that specializes in data analytics, new product and index development for institutional clients in the financial and real estate arenas. Pulsenomics also designs and manages expert surveys and consumer polls to identify trends and expectations that are relevant to effective business management and monitoring economic health.

[i] The Zillow Home Value Index is the median Zestimate® valuation for a given geographic area on a given day and includes the value of all single-family residences, condominiums and cooperatives, regardless of whether they sold within a given period. It is expressed in dollars, and seasonally adjusted.
[ii] Previously, the survey benchmark was the S&P/Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price Index (single-family properties, not seasonally-adjusted). For a summary comparison of the survey benchmarks prepared by Pulsenomics, please click here.
[iii] Based on the 25 percent most optimistic panelists in terms of cumulative home price change through 2017.
[iv] Based on the 25 percent most pessimistic panelists in terms of cumulative home price change through 2017.

SOURCE:

Zillow, Inc.

 

 

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Almost Two in Three Renters Lack Renter’s Insurance

SAN FRANCISCO, March 11, 2013, Only 34% of Americans who rent their homes or apartments have renter’s insurance, according to a new survey released today by InsuranceQuotes.com, a Bankrate (NYSE: RATE) company.

InsuranceQuotes.com also found that 60% of Americans incorrectly pegged the annual cost of renter’s insurance at $250 per year or more. Twenty-one percent thought renter’s insurance cost a whopping $1,000 per year or more. The correct answer (according to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners) is $185 per year.

“Renter’s insurance is a lot more affordable than most people think,” said Laura Adams , senior insurance analyst, InsuranceQuotes.com. “Most renters don’t realize that their landlord’s insurance usually only covers the structure and not the renter’s belongings. And even in a safe area, renters can fall victim to theft, fire, water damage or another calamity. Fifteen dollars a month is a small price to pay in order to protect your possessions and liability in a lawsuit.”

The InsuranceQuotes.com survey found that the most common reasons for lacking renter’s insurance are “my apartment or rental home has good security” (cited as an important reason by 57% of those who lack renter’s insurance), “renter’s insurance is too expensive” (52%) and “my landlord has insurance” (48%).

InsuranceQuotes.com also found that only 28% of those who have renter’s insurance received the recommended three or more policy quotes before purchasing.

Consumers can compare quotes for renter’s insurance and other types of insurance policies at www.InsuranceQuotes.com.

The survey was conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates International (PSRAI) and can be seen in its entirety here:

http://www.insurancequotes.com/insurance-for-renters

PSRAI obtained telephone interviews with a nationally representative sample of 1,004 adults living in the continental United States. Telephone interviews were conducted by landline (500) and cell phone (504, including 254 without a landline phone). Interviews were done in English by Princeton Data Source from February 7-10, 2013. Statistical results are weighted to correct known demographic discrepancies. The margin of sampling error for the complete set of weighted data is plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.

About InsuranceQuotes.com:

InsuranceQuotes.com provides consumers with a free, easy way to shop for and compare insurance quotes online, and delivers information about auto, home, health and life insurance and other types of insurance.

For more information, visit InsuranceQuotes.com.

InsuranceQuotes.com is part of Bankrate Insurance. Other Bankrate Insurance companies include NetQuote.com and InsureMe.com.

For More Information:

Ted Rossman
Public Relations Manager, Bankrate, Inc.
ted.rossman@bankrate.com
917-368-8635

SOURCE:

InsuranceQuotes.com

 

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