Homeowners Increasingly Worried About Economic Conditions

More and more homeowners are worried about making their mortgage payments as economic uncertainty—namely inflation—continues to swirl around the country according to a new study from Brace. 

In its new 2023 U.S. Mortgage Servicing Survey, Brace found that the overwhelming majority (85%) said that the current persistent rate of inflation makes them worry about their ability to pay their mortgage. 

But that wasn’t the only concern homeowners indicated: 78% are worried about interest rates, 73% are worried about medical and health expenses, 64% are worried about their job security, and 59% are worried about the ever-present threat of natural disasters. 

Nearly half (46%) of survey respondents reported that they are already feeling the squeeze of inflation saying that the increased cost of living has already impacted their ability to pay their mortgages over the last six months. 

The survey also showed notable differences between demographic groups, mainly by age and race. 

Younger homeowners are especially worried about their ability to pay their mortgage, a reversal from historical trends. The survey finds younger homeowners more likely to be handling solo mortgage payments as the only borrower. The majority (53%) of single-borrower mortgages were held by people under 45. Also, most minorities (54%) are single borrowers, compared to 43% of Caucasians. 

According to Brace, this survey also indicated that this is an excellent time for servicers to invest in homeowner education. 

More than two-thirds (69%) of homeowners are interested in receiving educational information from their Servicer about strategies for managing their mortgage finances and home equity. The same percentage said they would work with their Servicer to set financial goals. Interest is higher among minorities, with more than three-quarters of respondents wanting these educational tools. 

“Our survey sends a crucial message to mortgage servicers about what homeowners need,” says Eric Rachmel, CEO and Founder of Brace. “They’re seeking financial guidance, strategies, and education. Being more connected and engaged with servicing overall helps them to know their options and how to act upon them. Last year we found that most homeowners prefer to start with digital support instead of phone, and this builds upon that.” 

Click here to view the study in its entirety. 

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