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12/9/2011 - Poll: Declining values homeowners' biggest concern

Homeowners say diminished property values are a more significant threat than environmental hazards.

When it comes to evaluating what homeowners consider to be the biggest threat to their properties, a majority of those polled said it's their home declining in value.

According to an October survey conducted by polling company Koski Research, 58% of respondents said declines in housing market value were the biggest risk to their home.

"The survey results demonstrate how the decline in home values continues to undermine homeowners’ confidence in the housing market," said insurance expert Scott Ryles. "Home prices dropped in 10 of the 20 key U.S. metro areas last month, and prices for single family homes are down nearly 4% from a year ago. Homeowners clearly see the ongoing uncertainty surrounding housing values."

Robert Shiller, a Yale professor and housing market expert, said there are a variety of factors keeping pressure on home values, including high unemployment and a high rate of foreclosure activity.

Other undesirable scenarios respondents cited as prime fears included a fire, tornado or hurricane destroying their properties.

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