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Fannie Mae: Consumers think itÕ easier than ever to get a mortgage

Optimism boosted by strong employment levels

Consumers who believe it would be easy to get a mortgage today jumped to a record-high 54%, Fannie Mae’s February 2015 National Housing Survey found.

On the other side, the share who believes it would be difficult to get a mortgage dropped to a survey low of 43%.

Optimism toward the economy is growing on the heels of continued improvement in the employment market, adding to an overall boost in the housing market.

"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,” Duncan said.

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%, while the share who believe it is headed in the wrong direction decreased to 45%, a new survey low.

“We are very optimistic about the opportunities available to homebuyers in our markets. Interest rates remain at very low levels, home values continue to be affordable and Fannie Mae’s release this morning supports the growing optimism from consumers toward the strength of the economy,” Marcus McCue, executive vice president and chief business development officer with Guardian Mortgage, said.

 “This optimism, primarily built upon their own experiences on ‘main street’, not ‘Wall Street’, shows that they are feeling more economically secure and confident in their financial stability – prerequisite making the financial investment in a new home. With this push to purchase from homebuyers, we eagerly await the inventory of homes available for them to purchase,” McCue added.

Click the next page for more survey highlights. 

Fannie Mae survey highlights

Homeownership and Renting:

  • The average 12-month home price change expectation remained at 2.5%
  • The share of respondents who say home prices will go up in the next 12 months fell to 46%. The share who say home prices will go down fell to 6%
  • The share of respondents who say mortgage rates will go up in the next 12 months increased back to 48%
  • Those who say it is a good time to buy a house remained at 67%. Those who say it is a good time to sell decreased by 4 percentage points to 40%
  • The average 12-month rental price change expectation increased to 4%
  • The percentage of respondents who expect home rental prices to go up in the next 12 months remained at 52%
  • A survey high of 54% of respondents think it would be easy to get a home mortgage today, while the share saying it would be difficult to get a mortgage fell 4 percentage points to 43%—a survey low
  • The share who say they would buy if they were going to move fell 1 percentage 

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