Gauging home values is a high priority for consumers visiting real estate sites, followed by finding for-sale homes, monitoring price trends, searching for a real estate agent, and finding financing, according to a study conducted for Realtor.com operator Move Inc.

Gauging home values is a high priority for consumers visiting real estate sites, followed by finding for-sale homes, monitoring price trends, searching for a real estate agent, and finding financing, according to a study conducted for Realtor.com operator Move Inc.

The study, based on interviews conducted from Oct. 10-12 by research company GfK Custom Research America, concluded that 61.5 percent of consumers visit online real estate Web sites to find home values. Meanwhile, 60.9 percent use the sites to locate for-sale homes and 53.3 percent use them to view price trends.

About 81.6 percent of respondents said that the availability of affordable mortgages is a serious problem for home buyers.

About 28.5 percent of respondents said that the election of a new president will help to instill confidence in the housing market, followed by a decline in the foreclosure rate (24.1 percent) and a rise in available mortgage credit (19.9 percent).

And 50 percent said the incoming president "should make helping troubled homeowners avoid foreclosure a priority during his first 100 days in office," according to a Move announcement about the survey. Increasing the supply of affordable mortgage credit (22.7 percent) and helping first-time home buyers to buy a home (16 percent) also ranked high among presidential priorities for survey respondents.

Among the 37.4 percent of respondents who identified themselves as home buyers, about 40.7 percent reported that economic conditions have kept them on the fence, and 28.1 percent of homeowners participating in the survey reported that they have sold or know someone who has recently sold a home for a lesser amount than desired.

Also, the survey revealed that about 4.7 percent of respondents plan to buy a home in the next 12 months, with an additional 17.7 percent planning to purchase a home in one to five years.

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