More Consumers Positive On Housing, But Not Quite Ready to Leave the Sidelines; Survey Results Suggest Continued Modest Housing Growth in 2015
Results from Fannie Mae's April 2015 National Housing Survey™ show some improvement in housing sentiment, but likely not enough to trigger any breakout improvements in housing market activity this year. Among those surveyed, the share saying they would prefer to buy a home if they were to move increased to 63 percent in April, following a drop of six percentage points in February and March. In addition, average home price growth expectations continued their steady climb from late last year, with respondents now saying home prices will increase by 2.8 percent during the next 12 months. However, the share who believe this is a good time to buy a home decreased by four percentage points as consumer concerns regarding high home prices surged for a second consecutive month, matching renewed concerns regarding the state of the economy. These data points as a whole mirror Fannie Mae’s Home Purchase Sentiment Index (expected to be released this summer), which has remained largely flat since last fall, further suggesting that housing growth may remain subdued in 2015.
“The spring and summer home buying season has gotten off to a stronger start, reflected in some of the improvement in consumer housing sentiment,” said Doug Duncan, senior vice president and chief economist at Fannie Mae. “The share of consumers who intend to own rather than rent their next home rebounded after a two-month slide. Meanwhile, home price growth expectations strengthened to the strongest pace since last October. Nevertheless, consumers continue to express concerns about the recent weakening economic conditions and high home prices. These combine to depress the share of consumers believing it is a good time to buy a home. When we consider both the continued caution of consumers and the positive start to the year, we believe that these results support our expectation that 2015 will be a year of modest growth in housing activity.”
Fannie Mae's monthly national consumer attitudinal survey report provides indicators offering a window into the opinions of Americans across the country. These behavioral insights convey what consumers think about the outlook for owning and renting a home and about their household finances, and may serve as key inputs for determining the future course of investment across housing types.
On this webpage you will find a news release with highlights from the survey results and the April Data Release highlighting 12 consumer attitudinal indicators.