Consumers a bit less optimistic about housing
WASHINGTON – Sept. 9, 2014 – Americans’ attitudes toward the housing market continued to soften in August. Fannie Mae’s August 2014 National Housing Survey seems to suggest that housing activity may resume its modest recovery in 2015 after some pullback this year.
Despite ongoing improvements in the labor market, consumers’ views on personal income over the past 12 months appear to be more bearish. In addition, the share of consumers who said now is a good time to buy a home dipped for the second consecutive month. It fell six percentage points since June (to 64 percent) and ties the all-time survey low.
“The August National Housing Survey results lend support to our forecast that 2015 will likely not be a breakout year for housing,” says Doug Duncan, senior vice president and chief economist at Fannie Mae. “The deterioration … reflects a shift away from record home purchase affordability without enough momentum” from an uptick in attitudes about personal finances.
• The average 12-month home price change expectation fell to 2.1 percent.
• The share of respondents who say home prices will go up in the next 12 months held steady at 42 percent. The share who say down increased to 9 percent.
• The share of respondents who say mortgage rates will go up in the next 12 months fell four percentage points to 50 percent.
• Those who say it’s a good time to buy a house fell to 64 percent, matching the all-time low.
• Those who say it is a good time to sell decreased to 38 percent.
• The average 12-month rental price change expectation rose to 4.1 percent.
• The percentage of respondents who expect home rental prices to go up in the next 12 months increased to 53 percent.
• The share of respondents who think it would be easy to get a home mortgage today increased by one percentage point.
• The share who say they would buy if they were going to move fell to 64 percent, while the share who would rent increased to 32 percent – the narrowest gap in over a year.
© 2014 Florida Association of Realtors® All rights reserved. Reprinted with permission of the Florida Association of Realtors®.
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