There is one word to describe the current housing market: optimistic. Despite months of hearing about a housing bubble and rising mortgage rates, the outlook for real estate is good.
The worries of a bursting real estate bubble actually seem to be low among homeowners. In a national survey conducted by ING Direct, most individuals experienced some growth in their home value in the past 12 months. The average increase was approximately 6%, with owners in New England and Pacific states having the largest growth. The values of homes in south-central states remained about the same.
Most homeowners do not seem concerned about a downturn in the real estate housing market. Almost 74% of the individuals surveyed, who have owned their homes for more than three years, remained optimistic about the value of their homes.
The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is at its highest point in four years. However, as it hovers at 6 percent, it is still a relatively low rate compared to the exceedingly high rates of the late 1980s when mortgage rates increased to over 10%.
According to Freddie Mac, there are indications of a strong economy, which is why mortgage rates have increased lately. Consumer confidence is on the rise and existing home sales are also on the upswing. This can be attributed to a positive labor market. As most people know, healthy employment leads to greater consumer spending.
Consumer perception is everything. With the continued view that real estate is a good investment, people will continue to buy and sell houses. This will bode well for home buyers, home sellers, real estate salespeople, mortgage lenders and just about anyone related to the real estate industry.