Recently released data from the 1999 American Housing Survey reveals what many homeowners already know: Their houses need work. Of 45,000 participants, more than one in eight reported a water leak from outside had occurred in the previous 12 months. The other most commonly reported problems included blown fuses; inside water leaks; uncomfortably cold indoor temperatures; and breakdowns in water supply, toilets and sewer or septic systems. And the older the house, the more likely it was to have such problems. For example, 20% of those built before 1920 had water leaks from outside, while only 9% of those built in the 1990s experienced the same problem.
The Census Bureau conducted the survey for the Department of Housing and Urban Development.