Today’s Investors Prefer Real Estate Over the Stock Market

From A new national survey conducted last month for Reecon Advisors found that investor confidence in real estate is significantly higher than the stock market despite the two-year drop in property values. The survey was the latest measure of investor perception of the comparative mertis of real estate and stocks as a long term investment and the most recent conducted since the crisis that struck the nation’s financial system last fall.By a margin of 53.7 percent to 30.8 percent, those surveyed believe real estate to be a better long-term investment than the stock market today. Confidence in real estate is highest in the South (58.6 percent) and West (58.4 percent), and among young people 18 to 24 (63.8 percent). The stock market ranks highest with those age 35-49 (34.7 percent). People in income brackets over $40,000 preferred real estate over the stock market by a significantly greater margin than those in lower income brackets. Middle income Americans, making from $40,000 to $75,000 a year, registered the greatest support for real estate, ranging from 58.50 percent to 62.20 percent.

However, public opinion on whether the stock market or real estate will recover first is much more evenly split and falls within the survey’s margin of error. Forty-six percent predict the stock market will recover first; 43.2 percent believe real estate will be first. Real estate ranked highest with young people 18 to 24 (57.3 percent) and Southerners (50.6 percent).

The telephone survey, by GFK Custom Research North America, was conducted December 19-21, 2008. A total of 1,004 interviews were completed, 524 with female adults and 480 with male adults. The margin of error on weighted data is +3 percentage points for the full sample. All completed interviews are weighted to ensure accurate and reliable representation of the total population, 18 years and older.

The poll is the first in a series of opinion surveys on issues critical to real estate markets to be conducted by Reecon Advisors, Inc. for the Reecon Advisory Report, a weekly newsletter that provides insight, analysis and intelligence on residential real estate.