According to a survey from bankrate.com, Americans' number one choice for investing is real estate. Though they're overall still concerned about jobs and the economy, the survey respondents mostly feel good about their personal finances.
There is a ton of information in this survey. It's not all about real estate as an investment, but more about how today's Americans view their personal financial situations and their plans for the near future.
• Job security: 22% of respondents feel more secure in their jobs this year over last year. This was a small drop from the June results to July.
o New workers expressed more security in their jobs than older workers on the other end of their careers.
o Republicans were three times less likely to feel secure in their jobs than Democrats.
o Lower income workers felt more secure than workers earning closer to the median wage.
• Savings: 29% say they're less comfortable with their level of savings than they were last year.
o College graduates are more comfortable with their savings levels than those who have never attended college.
o 34% of Republicans were less comfortable with their savings than last year, while this was true for only 22% of Democrats.
o People living in urban areas were twice as likely to feel comfortable with their savings as those living in rural areas.
• Amount of Debt: Survey respondents were asked about their comfort level with their debt this year compared to last.
o Lower income households were more than twice as likely to say they are uncomfortable with their debt level as those in higher salary brackets.
o In the Midwest, 31% of respondents felt more comfortable with their debt, but only 19% in the Northeast said the same.
o 32% of full time workers are more comfortable with their debt, while only 18% of unemployed saying the same.
• Overall Financial Situation: The survey participants were asked how they feel this year about their overall financial situation compared to last year.
o 33% of men feel better compared to 25% of women.
o 38% of Democrats feel better about their overall financial condition this year compared to 27% of Republicans.
o 25% of people who never attended college felt worse about their situation compared to 15% of college graduates.
That's all interesting, but let's get to what grabbed my attention. Here are the results of what survey respondents considered as good investments. They were asked what they considered the best investment vehicle for money they could tie up for 10 years or longer.
• Real estate was at the top at 27%.
• Cash investments (savings accounts, CDs, etc) held the second position at 23%.
• The stock market came in at 17%.
• Precious metals were at 14%.
• Bonds were farther down at 5%.
• 8% didn't like any of the choices, and 7% didn't have an answer.
I'm really happy to see these results, and I hope that I've helped new investors to recognize the potential and get involved in real estate investing.