November 2012 Topic Analysis Shows Mortgage Borrowers May Be Leaving Money on the Table

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Consumer Research & Analysis


November 2012 Topic Analysis Shows Mortgage Borrowers May Be Leaving Money on the Table by Using Less Effective Mortgage Shopping Strategies

Many Americans do not adequately investigate or fail to understand fully the choices available to them when looking for a mortgage. This behavior may increase both cost to the borrower and the potential for problems to arise during the life of the loan, according to Fannie Mae’s November 2012 National Housing Survey Topic Analysis Report. Data from the study suggest that consumers could save money and find a more financially sustainable mortgage product if they shopped more effectively.

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Topic Analysis

Topic Analysis

“Homeowners who don’t obtain multiple mortgage offers or compare rates are essentially leaving money on the table, particularly given today’s unprecedentedly low interest rates,” said Fannie Mae Chief Economist Doug Duncan. “Although a home purchase is the largest financial obligation most people will ever make, many borrowers do not fully understand their mortgage products and costs. As a result, some homeowners in this position may find themselves with unsustainable payments down the road.”

Fannie Mae's Topic Analysis Reports provide deeper insights into one or more housing issues based on the compilation of three monthly National Housing Survey samples. The National Housing Survey polls more than 1,000 homeowners and renters each month to assess their attitudes toward owning and renting a home, the current state of their household finances, views on the U.S. housing finance system, and overall confidence in the economy. The three monthly survey studies that make up any given Topic Analysis Report are identical in wording and placement of questions.

On this webpage you will find a link to an FM Commentary from Steve Deggendorf, director of Economic & Strategic Research, that provides key insights from the study results, as well as a survey results deck, a data summary of responses to questions asked, infographics illustrating some survey results, technical notes providing in-depth information about the survey methodology, the questionnaire used for the survey, and a comparative assessment of the Fannie Mae National Housing Survey and other consumer surveys.

Downloads and Related Links
FM Commentary
Presentation About National Housing Survey Topic Analysis Focus (PDF)
Data Summary (PDF)
Infographics (PDF)