Consumer Confidence Rises

The National Housing Survey, which was conducted in March of 2013, shows that most American consumers are confident in the housing market’s future. The survey released by Fannie Mae, which polls regular consumers, asked a variety of questions. When asked if home prices will increase over the next 12 months, 48% said yes; 46% said that mortgage rates will increase. As for an increase in home prices, 50% believe that will happen.

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Home Builder Sentiment Improves

Home builders throughout the U.S. have a positive outlook on their industries future. According to the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index, home builder sentiment is the highest it has been in six years. The index polled home builders throughout the U.S. on their outlook on the next six months for future sales expectations.

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Small Businesses Gaining Access To Credit

A recent survey of 255 risk managers at banks throughout the U.S. indicates a future increase of extended credit. The FICO study showed 52% of those asked expected a rise in available credit and 62% think the availability of such credit will meet demand. The same survey revealed 79% of those polled believe that small business loan delinquency rates will be lower or flatten.

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Recall: Haier America Recalls Chest Freezers

Haier America and the CPSC have issued a recall for Chest Freezers. The freezer’s circuitry can overheat and become a fire hazard. The recall is in effect for approximately 41,000 units sold.

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Home Prices Continue Upward Progress

According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), total existing home sales have increased for 21 months in a row year-over-year. There was a 10.3% increase over March of 2012 and sales have climbed to a 4.46 seasonally adjusted rate for March.

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Housing Market Still On The Rebound

It looks like the U.S. housing market is still making gains in a slowly improving economy. Home prices have increased 6% when compared to the same time last year. This trend of higher house prices stretches across the country and is stabilizing both single family and multifamily housing starts.

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Third Month In A Row For Franchising Industry Growth

Information released by the International Franchise Association (IFA) shows that the franchising industry is in its third consecutive month of growth. The Franchise Business Index (FBI) improved by 0.3% in March. This index measures the economic health of the industry. The index was up 1.9% from the year before.

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15-Year Mortgage Rates See New Lows

There was some good news concerning interest rates last month. According to Freddie Mac, 15 year fixed rate mortgages were at an all time low at 2.61%. The 5 year adjustable rate was at its lowest levels during the same period at 2.58%. This was the fourth week in a row where mortgage rates were lowered. Here are some more national average mortgage rates for the week which ended on April 25th:

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Reports Show Strong Franchise Growth in Real Estate and Service Sectors

Data taken from the International Franchise Association (IFA) shows that franchises will grow more than other businesses this year in respects to: job creation, new business formation, economic output and GDP contribution. The information was taken from the IFA’s Economic Outlook for Franchise Businesses report.

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Housing Market Sees A 1.5% Rise In New-Home Sales For March

According to data released from HUD and the U.S. Census Bureau, there was a 1.5% increase in newly built single-family homes during March. This would bring the seasonally adjusted annual rate of these homes up to 417,000 units sold in March. The inventory for newly built single-family homes stayed steady at 151,000 units during the same month. At current sales price, this would bring this category to a 4.4 month supply.

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