amanda jacob house

My husband Jacob and I in front of my parents’ old house. Someday, we’ll have a home of our own!

For many of us, the phrase “American Dream” usually conjures the vision of a dream home, perhaps with a white picket fence. Through the years, I have heard many people offer different opinions on the pluses and minuses of home ownership.

“I don’t want to worry about making repairs myself or doing landscaping,” I have heard apartment renters say of their desire to steer clear of home ownership. “Paying a mortgage toward something you will own makes more sense than paying rent, which is like throwing money away every month,” experienced homeowners have said to me.

After much agonizing over what I would create a survey about for this week’s assignment, I figured it would be a great idea to take these opinions I’ve heard about home ownership over the years and try to measure them quantitatively.

Many of my classmates chose to create surveys about social media use, which is great and makes perfect sense within the context of our degree program. However, I thought if I created a survey with social media as a topic, the results of the survey may skew pro-social media since many of us would likely be taking each other’s surveys and we are all pretty into social media. So I thought home ownership would make a good “general interest” topic that I could survey classmates and non-classmates alike about.

Constructing the survey was daunting at first, but once I figured out how I wanted to structure the survey, it flowed very well. I intended to use Survey Monkey, but I wanted to use the Skip Logic feature so each question would flow to another one based on each participant’s response. Yet Survey Monkey’s free account did not allow for using Skip Logic on questions, so I switched to Qualtrics and was able to use Skip Logic beautifully.

In getting the results back, I would like to see if there are any common demographic factors among each group I’m measuring – satisfied homeowners, dissatisfied homeowners, neutral homeowners, renters/non-homeowners who are interested in buying a home someday, and renters/non-homeowners who have no interest in buying a home.

As for which group I personally belong to, it depends on my mood. I am not in any of the homeowners categories as of yet because I’ve never owned a home. I’ve tried to join that group and it hasn’t worked out before, but sometimes I wonder if that’s not a blessing in disguise. After all, there are positives and negatives to owning a home (or not owning a home).

RELATED: Take my homeownership survey!