ID Analytics, a risk management and analysis firm, has released a survey which found that 32% of American adults, roughly 68 million people, believe Americans should be able walk away from their mortgages without any fear of consequence.
The survey also found that 13% of adults surveyed would strategically default on their mortgage and 17% know someone who has.
The survey of 1,026 U.S. adults was conducted in September for ID Analytics by JZ Analytics, a firm founded by well-known pollster John Zogby.
"Our research into the consumer opinion of the economic crisis of 2008 found alarming results," Zogby said when addressing executives attending Advance 2012, San Diego-based ID Analytics' 10th-annual consumer risk conference.
"What jumped out is how many Americans feel it is acceptable for homeowners to walk away from a mortgage and go into foreclosure. If Americans carry on with that mindset, it will continue to cause problems as the economy undergoes a slow recovery," Zogby said.
The firm reported that some of the survey respondents feel homeowners should be able to strategically default on mortgages because they believe the mortgage market has been a scam for many years, built on false promises that took advantage of people that didn't understand what was happening and never had a chance of paying the mortgage off.
The survey also found 17% would exaggerate personal information in order to obtain a mortgage, 36% believe it’s socially acceptable to have a poor credit score and 35% are afraid of becoming a victim of identity theft.