Americans Remain Remarkably Optimistic About Housing And Their Personal Finances

The latest Fannie Mae National Housing Survey shows that Americans remain remarkably optimistic about the future of the housing market as well as their personal financial situation.

The Fannie Mae survey polls a nationally representative sample of 1,001 adults and compares the results to a previous poll conducted a year earlier.

Home Prices

The survey reveals the highest recorded percentage of optimism on housing prices since the Fannie Mae survey was first conducted.   Only 13% of poll respondents thought that housing would continue to decline, while 35% expect housing prices to go up while 48% expect housing prices to remain stable.

Perhaps some of this optimism is based on the blip up in housing values for the first time in almost five years, as reported by The Wall Street Journal.

Courtesy: Wall Street Journal

Time to Buy?

The survey also shows the highest recorded level of poll respondents (73%) who feel that this is a good time to buy a home, compared to only 15% of respondents who felt that it was not a good time to buy a house.

With housing prices in many parts of the country reverting to levels last seen more than a decade ago and mortgage rates at all time lows, the American public seems to feel that home prices have reached a bottom.  This seems like a common sense opinion based on the fact that the rent to own ratio is at an all time low which allows many people to own a home for less than a rent payment.

Macro vs. Micro Economic View

A substantial 57% of Fannie Mae poll respondents felt that the economy was still on the wrong track but this is a marked improvement from last August when 78% of respondents said the economy was on the wrong track.  Despite the gloomy view by the American public on the overall economy, a large percentage of Americans remain optimistic about their own financial situation.

The poll reveals that 43% of those surveyed expect their personal financial situation to improve over the next 12 months, 42% expect no change and only 13% think their situation will get worse.  Perhaps Americans are unduly influenced by the constant barrage of negative economic news from the mainstream press even as their personal financial status stays the same or improves.

Household Incomes

Despite a very high rate of unemployment, wage cuts and near zero yields on bank savings, the vast majority of Americans surveyed by Fannie Mae said their income is significantly higher (18%) or about the same (65%) as a year ago.  Only 15% of Americans who said their income was significantly lower than a year ago are struggling according to the survey.

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