Consumer Optimism Toward the Economy Reaches New All-Time Survey High; Expected Ease of Getting a Mortgage Also Hits Record High as Overall Housing Sentiment Holds Steady
Amid continued strengthening in employment, consumer optimism toward the economy is growing and appears to be contributing to further improvement in overall housing sentiment, according to results from Fannie Mae's February 2015 National Housing Survey™. The share of respondents who believe the economy is headed in the right direction increased 3 percentage points last month to an all-time survey high of 47 percent, while the share who believe it is headed in the wrong direction decreased to 45 percent, a new survey low. Additionally, the share who believe it would be easy to get a home mortgage today increased to a record-high 54 percent while a survey low 43 percent think it would be difficult to get a mortgage.
"Continuing improvements in consumer attitudes in this month's National Housing Survey lend support to our expectation that 2015 will be a year of the economy dragging housing upward," said Doug Duncan, senior vice president and chief economist at Fannie Mae. "The share of consumers who think the economy is on the right track rose to a record high since the inception of the survey nearly five years ago and for the first time exceeded the share who believe it's on the wrong track. Consumer confidence seems to be getting a boost from employment growth. This is reflected in their views on the ease of getting a mortgage today, which also reached a survey high in February. We continue to see strength in attitudes about the current home buying and selling environment and consistently high shares of consumers saying they expect to buy a home on their next move. At the same time, we still need to see further growth in consumer optimism toward personal finances and income for more robust improvement in housing market attitudes."
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 the February Data Release highlighting 12 consumer attitudinal indicators.
Downloads and Related Links
February 2015 National Housing Survey Data Release (PDF)