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NAR and To Launch Mega Ad Campaign

The National Association of REALTORS and have announced a joint media blitz campaign, including national television and radio advertisements. The goal is to combine the influence of each to reach a far broader audience than before. The campaign will promote REALTORS and as the optimal sources for "timely, accurate and comprehensive information and sound, trusted advice."

Zillow and Trulia, which have overtaken as the leading national real estate search portals, are also conducting national marketing campaigns to grown their consumer audience.

Sunnier Days Ahead in Housing, Freddie Says

The housing market is stronger today than at any point since the Great Recession and has made progress in several key areas after hitting bottom in 2009, Freddie Mac repoorts in a blog post looking at the state of the housing market heading into spring.

Home sales are up 13% since their low point and are predicted to rise about 3% in 2014, Freddie Mac reports.  The agency also reports that housing starts are up 50% since hitting bottom. Freddie Mac is predicting a nearly 20% increase in new-housing starts in 2014, "which will begin to help ease tight inventories in many markets."

Housing prices have also been on the upswing, about 16% higher than their bottom in 2009. Freddie Mac expects home values to continue to rise this year, but at a more moderate 5% pace. Freddie Mac is also forecasting mortgage rates to rise about a half-percentage point during the year to around a 5% average by the end of the year.

American Optimism Trends Higher as Home Buying Season Starts

As the market enters the spring homebuying season, more homeowners are beginning to think now is a good time to sell a home.

According to the latest Fannie Mae National Housing Survey, the share of respondents who say it is a good time to sell a home esclated to 38% in March, up from 26% for the same period a year ago.

Meanwhile, 52% of people believe it is easy to get a mortgage today, compared to 47% a year ago, matching the all-time survey high.

On top of this, the share of people who say their personal financial situation improved during the past year reached an all-time survey high of 40%.

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