John McCain Secures Twenty-Three Percent of Renters’ Votes; National Economy Listed as Top Concern
(CHICAGO) October 28, 2008 – The increasing number of housing foreclosures seen across the nation have turned more homeowners toward the rental market. In fact, the percentage of renters has increased to 32.2 percent from 30.9 percent while homeownership fell to 67.8 percent this year from 69.1 percent in 2005.¹ This represents the sharpest decline in homeownership in 20 years and the highest number of renters since 2002, when President George W. Bush started a campaign to expand homeownership.²
In response to this ongoing surge of renters, Apartments.com conducted a national survey for the renter point-of-view on the upcoming presidential election.³ One week away from casting their ballots, renters surveyed revealed that nearly 60 percent are backing Barack Obama for president and the top issue on their minds is the national economy. John McCain received 23 percent of renters’ votes followed by 9 percent who preferred not to answer the question and 6 percent who are undecided.
Sixty-nine percent of renters surveyed consider themselves to be tuned into current national and worldwide events and issues followed by 28 percent who said they are somewhat familiar. While many renters believe U.S. health care, national security and the environment to be major issues facing the nation, the U.S. economy topped the list when asked to select from a list of multiple issues. An overwhelming majority of 90 percent of renters surveyed placed the national economy as the most important issue among their top three followed by health care at 59 percent and the Iraq War at 53 percent. Other issues significant to renters are the environment and alternative fuel and energy options at 45 percent, education at 29 percent and rights for women and the gay community at 17 percent.
Renters vote in presidential elections. Forty percent of the renters surveyed consider themselves very politically active and 22 percent who do not would like to become more active. This is no exception when it comes to the presidential election. Even 32 percent of renters who do not consider themselves to be very active in politics vote in presidential elections. This becomes even more apparent as 96 percent of renters said they are registered voters and 98 percent of those registered will vote in the presidential election on November 4, 2008. Sixty-five percent of voters are planning to vote within their political party while 9 percent will vote outside and 7 percent are undecided.
Renters who need to know where to cast their ballet for the presidential election on November 4, 2008 can find their polling place by visiting http://maps.google.com/maps/mpl?moduleurl=http://maps.google.com/mapfiles/mapplets/elections/2008/us-voter-info/us-voter-info.xml&utm_campaign=en&utm_medium=ha&utm_source=en-ha-na-us-sk-mp&utm_term=voting and entering their home address and zip code.
As part of its monthly “What Renters Want” research series, Apartments.com surveys renters on various topics. For more information on these surveys or to receive a copy of additional survey results, please contact Tammy Kotula at email@example.com.
1. U.S. Census data through the end of March, 2008
2. Rise in the Number of Renters Erases a Decade’s Gain in Home Ownership, The New York Times, June 21, 2008
3. Methodology: The Apartments.com What Renters Want survey was conducted by email and answered by 1,110 apartment renters within the United States between Tuesday, October 21 to Thursday, Oct. 23, 2008