A recent survey by the National Association of Realtors shows that one out of three homeowners are concerned that they will have to sell their homes.
Pressures include rising property taxes and increased electrical, fuel and energy costs.
The survey found that 66% of Americans believe that high monthly payments are the greatest obstacle to buying a home - not high down payments, as many industry insiders say.
Only 14% say that rising mortgage interest rates would stop them from owning a home.
"It's clear America is facing a crisis in housing opportunities with nearly two-thirds of families concerned about being able to find a home they both like and can afford, " said NAR president Thomas Stevens.
"Many families are struggling to meet the high cost of homeownership, and increasingly those costs are property taxes and energy utilities. "
Thirty-four percent of those polled said that rising property taxes are their greatest concern. Twenty-eight percent pointed to increasing energy costs as a crucial worry point.
In 2003, the average monthly mortgage payment was $840. By 2005, the average increased 23.8% more to $1,040.
In the past year, the average monthly payment has risen 11.5% to $1,132 in April of 2006.
The price of electricity in February was estimated to be 12% higher than the previous February, according to the Energy Information Administration. Natural gas prices increased 28%, while home heating oil was up 25%.
The average state and local property taxes for 2004 were 13.8% higher than 2003, at $1,121 per person, according to the Census Bureau.
Forty-two percent of Americans consider the lack of affordable housing in their community to be a top concern in general. High energy costs and the lack of affordable health care was also on the minds of those polled.
Eighty percent of respondents would like to see more affordable housing in their area. In fact, 68% said that they would vote for a candidate that worked to make housing more affordable in their areas.
"People care about affordable housing, and a candidate's position on this issue makes a significant difference to voters, " said Stevens. “Americans are increasingly looking to their community leaders to seek ways to take a more active role in addressing affordability issues in their communities. "
Martin Lukac represents http://www.RateEmpire.com and http://www.1AmericanFinancial.com , a finance web-company specializing in real estate and mortgage rates. We specialize in daily updates, mortgage news, rate predictions, mortgage rates and more. Find low home loan mortgage interest rates from hundreds of mortgage companies!