Confirming the findings of an earlier NAHB-commissioned poll, which showed that housing and homeownership remain national priorities, the New York Times published the results of its own poll on housing issues. The survey found that 89% of respondents said that homeownership is an important part of the American dream.
With respect to the mortgage interest deduction (MID), the Times reported:
And almost no one favors discontinuing the mortgage tax deduction, a prized middle-class benefit that has been featured on some budget-cutting proposals.
In fact, the results of the Times poll indicate that 93% of people thought it was very (63%) or somewhat important (30%) for the federal government to keep the MID in place. These are striking results when you note that more than half of the 979 respondents had no mortgage because they were either renters (29%) or owned their home free and clear of a mortgage (26%).
The poll is also consistent with the proposition that once economic conditions improve, particularly in the labor market, pent-up housing demand will be unlocked for both rental and owner-occupied housing. For example, 85% of renters in the Times poll hoped to achieve homeownership one day. And 10% of homeowners have delayed selling their home and moving over the last three years due to housing market conditions.
NAHB estimates that 2.1 million households have been deferred or delayed as a result of the Great Recession.