Housing Attitudes are Improving

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Consumers’ optimism toward the housing market showed a slight rebound last month, with more people now saying it’s a good time to buy or sell a home, according to Fannie Mae’s September 2014 National Housing Survey, based on about 1,000 Americans’ attitudes on the housing market.

The share of consumers who say now is a good time to purchase a home rose to 68 percent in September, a four percentage point increase from August. Also, the share of Americans who said they’d prefer to buy a home on their next move rose to 66 percent, following a three-point drop the previous month. The percentage of those who reported now is a good time to sell grew to 39 percent. Those surveyed also were more upbeat about home prices rising in the next 12 months, with expectations of price gains of 2.2 percent, on average.

Consumers also showed greater optimism toward the overall economy, with 40 percent now saying the economy is on the right track, posting a five percentage point gain from last month.

“The September National Housing Survey shows a slight recovery in consumer housing sentiment after a two-month setback, bringing us back to the modestly positive trend we’ve seen over the last year,” says Doug Duncan, senior vice president and chief economist at Fannie Mae. “It might be too late to save this year’s home sales from posting the first decline in five years. However, the return to an upward trend in housing sentiment, combined with this month’s positive news on the jobs front, suggests that a broad-based, albeit measured, housing recovery is on track to resume in 2015. The results of the past few months show that consumer optimism remains cautious and somewhat volatile, and we’ll likely continue to see bumps on the housing recovery path reflected in our survey results.”

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