Americans' Personal Finance Sentiment Strengthens, Housing Optimism Follows Suit
Results from Fannie Mae’s October 2014 National Housing Survey show Americans' optimism about the housing market continued its gradual climb amid greater confidence in household income and personal finances. The share of respondents who say they expect their personal financial situation to improve during the next 12 months climbed to 45 percent – seven points higher compared to one year ago – while the share expecting their financial situation to worsen decreased to 10 percent last month. Although consumer attitudes about the direction of the economy remain subdued, with only 40 percent of survey respondents saying the economy is on the right track, the October results mark a 13 percentage point improvement compared to the same time last year.
"Consumers are growing more optimistic about the housing market in the face of broader improvement in economic sentiment," said Doug Duncan, senior vice president and chief economist at Fannie Mae. "The share of consumers who expect their personal finances to get better is near its highest level since the survey's inception, while those expecting their finances to get worse reached a survey low. Home price expectations rose significantly this month, largely reversing the dip witnessed over the past four months, and the share of consumers who think it's a good time to sell a home reached another survey high. The narrowing gap between home buying and home selling sentiment may foreshadow increased housing inventory levels and a better balance of housing supply and demand. These results may help drive a healthier housing market in 2015."
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, the October Data Release highlighting 12 consumer attitudinal indicators, a podcast containing highlights from this month’s survey, month-over-month key indicator data, technical notes providing in-depth information about the survey methodology, the questionnaire used for the survey, and a comparative assessment of the Fannie Mae National Housing Survey and other consumer surveys.