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Survey: Top Real Estate Execs Cautiously Optimistic on Housing and the Economy

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Top real estate executives see continued improvement in the U.S. economy and housing, but they’re not universally bullish on either front, according to 2013 Imprev Thought Leader Survey.

“Their enthusiasm appears to be tempered,” said Renwick Congdon, chief executive officer of Imprev, a leading real estate technology company. “We are in a better place than we were last year, so these results are somewhat surprising.”

Respondents included more than 260 broker-owners and top executives at leading franchises and independent brokerage firms that were responsible for nearly half of all U.S. residential real estate transactions last year.

Key findings:

U.S. economic outlook: There’s a split view on the national economy over the next 12 months: Nearly half say it will improve (46 percent), yet more than half (51 percent) say it will stay the same (38 percent) or deteriorate (13 percent).

U.S. housing market outlook: More than half (56 percent) say the housing market will improve over the next 12 months, but only 2 percent say it will improve significantly. More than one-third (35 percent) say it will stay the same and 7 percent say it will deteriorate. That’s less rosy than their views last year, when the 2012 Imprev Thought Leader Survey found 70 percent of top real estate executives predicting the housing market would continue to improve over the coming year.

2014 housing outlook: Confidence in next year’s housing market is tempered: Nearly three in four say they are “somewhat confident” in the 2014 housing market (72 percent), but fewer than one in four (24 percent) described their attitude as “very confident” in the 2014 housing market. Good news: Fewer than 5 percent say they are “not at all confident” in the 2014 housing market.

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