Home prices are down 31 percent from their pre-recession peak in 2006. Still, more than 80 percent of adults say that buying a home is the best investment a person can make.
Two recent nationwide studies -- one by the Pew Research Center and another by Internet search engine Trulia -- revealed that not only do consumers prefer to buy than rent, but buying is more affordable than renting in 78 percent of the nation's cities.
The Pew Research Center surveyed 2,142 adults between March 15 and March 29, 2011. The survey sample included 57 percent of respondents who own a home and 30 percent who are renters. The remainder has other arrangements, such as living with family members.
The study found that 37 percent "strongly agreed" and 44 p