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Survey: Hispanics View Homeownership Favorably

As the fastest-growing segment of the population, ""Fannie Mae"":http://www.fanniemae.com/portal/index.html says Hispanic Americans will play an important role in the future of the housing market. And the good news for the market, according to a recent ""survey"":http://www.fanniemae.com/portal/about-us/media/commentary/101713-shahdad.html by the GSE, is that the Hispanic population regards homeownership positively.

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As the Hispanic portion of the U.S. population continues to grow, so does its share of the housing market. From the 1990s to the 2000s, the share of homeownership growth contributed by Hispanics increased from 15 percent to 35 percent.

However, since the recession, homeownership has declined faster among Hispanics than among the overall population. Today homeownership among Hispanics is about 46 percent, compared to about 64 percent in 2012, according to Fannie Mae.

Despite the decline, Hispanics are even more likely to view homeownership favorably than the general population, Fannie Mae reports. The downside is that Hispanics are also more likely to anticipate difficulties in obtaining mortgage loans.

Among homeowners, the Hispanic population is as likely as the general population to say owning a home makes more financial sense than renting. About 91 percent of both populations favor homeownership from a financial perspective.

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However, among renters the percentage varies, with Hispanics outpacing the overall population. Eighty-eight percent of Hispanic renters say it makes more sense to own a home than to rent, whereas 71 percent of the general population agrees.

""The popularity of owning a home among the Hispanic population bodes well for the future of homeownership in America,"" said Sarah Shahdad, a researcher and analyst at Fannie Mae.

A greater percentage of Hispanic homeowners and renters say they are likely to purchase a home in the next three years than the general population, according to Fannie Mae's survey.

Twenty-seven percent of Hispanic homeowners say they are likely to purchase a new home in the next three years, compared to 20 percent of the population as a whole.

The gap is even wider among renters, where 53 percent of Hispanics intend to purchase a home in the next three years and 43 percent of the overall population intends to do so.

Despite their intentions of owning a home, though, Hispanics are more likely to harbor apprehensions toward obtaining a mortgage loan.

Forty percent of homeowners in the overall population expressed concern about their ability to obtain a mortgage loan, but among the Hispanic population, 63 percent have concerns.

However, at 73 percent, the portion of Hispanic renters who feel getting a mortgage loan will be difficult nearly mirrors the broader population, where 72 percent of renters express concern, according to Fannie Mae's survey.

""Hispanic expectations for buying in the next three years are an encouraging sign for the ongoing housing market recovery,"" Shahdad said. However, she added, ""[f]or any aspiring homeowner, attaining the necessary income, credit history, and savings toward a down payment will be critical to realizing expectations for homeownership in the future.""

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