Consumer confidence is now at its highlest level since before The Great Recession, according to the Conference Board.  Now at 81.4, the Consumer Confidence Index is at its peak since January 2008, when it was 87.3.  Last month it was 74.3.

Rising along with consumer confidence has been the rebounding real estate market.  Both prices and sales are soaring for housing across the United States.  As detailed in another article on this site, more Americans are buying real estate with less investing in the stock market.  The optimism of the US consumer is showing up in a willingness to buy real estate, not stocks and bonds.

"The confidence in the US economy is growing, but there is a lingering distrust of Wall Street," advised Jerry Cohen, President and Founder of EquityBuild, a real estate investment firm.  Cohen, who has been a principal in more than 1000 real estate transactions since 1984 and was recently awarded the prestigious "Moving America Foward" honor for his service to the community, said, "Everyone needs a place to live.  But not everyone needs to own securities.  That is why you see more Americans investing in real estate rather than stocks and bonds: you can see, feel, and touch the property you own, especially if it is your neighborhood."

Report after report cites the rising sales and prices in areas across the United States.   More optimistic about the overall US economy, more Americans are willing to commit to a 30-year mortgage to buy a piece of  property as their home or for investment purposes.  Before, there were many who prefered to rent, eschewing the commitment to a long term mortgage for real estate that might fall in value.

This can be seen in many areas, such as Chicago.  

In that housing market, real estate agents are reporting multiple offers for properties when put up for sale.  Rather than concern about the prices holding up, real estate agents in the Chicago area are more worried about the lack of inventory to sell.

Real estate investing has also become more attractive due to the negative future of the stock market.  Falling 2.77% over the last month of trading, the Dow Jones Industrial Average has a precarious future as the Federal Reserve pulls back its support of injecting $85 billion into the financial system every month.  If the Federal Reserve stops printing so much money, many feel the stock and bond markets will fall even more.  While that may result in higher mortgage rates, a Goldman Sachs study revealed that it will not deter Americans from buying real estate.  In large part that is due to the increasing confidence level.

About this, Cohen noted that, "I have been consistently buying real estate since 1984.  Interest rates in the 1980s were in the high teens, about four times as high as the present level of a 30-year mortgage.  Profits were still, made however.  For the individual who is a passive investor with a long term outlook, real estate is an excellent buy, and always will be.  That is why about 90% of the millionaires over the last two centuries have been from gains in the value of their real estate holdings."