Home ownership a big deal to NY'ers

September 27, 2013 Updated May 27, 2010 at 6:26 AM EDT

By Business First of Buffalo

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Home ownership a big deal to NY'ers

September 27, 2013 Updated May 27, 2010 at 6:26 AM EDT

Home ownership remains a significant part of the "American Dream" to New Yorkers but property taxes and valuations are a concern.

A survey, released Wednesday by the Siena Research Institute and New York State Association of Realtors, indicated that 97 percent of respondents are very or somewhat satisfied with their place of residence.

Additionally, nearly 89 percent say their home is perfectly located to most everything they need. More than 80 percent say their home is an asset that will increase in value over time, they feel a sense of connection to their neighborhood and community, and their home is an expression of who they are.

"Despite all the national news about declining home values, in New York, home owners report that only one in three thinks that their home is worth less today than it was a year ago," SRI Director Don Levy said. "One in five has seen an increase and forty-one percent believe their home value has remained constant. Hardest hit are the areas around New York City including Long Island and Westchester where a majority thinks they have lost value."

Home owners become anxious on the subject of property taxes, as 76 percent believe the state should cap the property-tax rate. SRI said 84 percent support keeping the tax deduction for home-mortgage interest.

By a nearly two-to-one margin, residents say they pay taxes because they have to and aren't convinced the money is well-managed or used efficiently.

As an investment, 69 percent anticipate values will rise over the next five years. Also, 81 percent of all residents, 84 percent of owners and 74 percent of renters think home ownership is a better investment than the stock market.

Among prospective buyers, funding a down payment and qualifying for a mortgage concern people the most.

The results were based on a telephone survey April 26 to May 11 of 1,105 state residents over age 18. The margin of error is 3.1 points for the overall sample and 4.3 points for questions pertaining to home owners.

The full survey can be found at www.siena.edu/sri/research.