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Last week, some promising numbers came out for the state of the U.S. economy. In December, the "Present Situation Index" rose to 98.6—the highest level in over a decade. At least from the perspective of consumers, the economy is improving. A recent PEW Research study also concluded that the most important issue facing the current administration—according to Americans—is no longer the economy. Since President Obama took office for his second term in 2013, the percentage of Americans who say the economy is a top priority has declined by 11 percentage points. By many measures, the economy is getting better from the perspective of the American consumer.
As leaders in the mortgage industry, this is welcome news. How soon this consumer confidence will translate into a more robust housing market is difficult to tell. But, it at least appears that we're headed in that direction. It has been a rough decade, with homeownership becoming less attractive in eyes of the consumer as the economy has become sluggish. But it seems we're finally ascending from the valley.
Those who have survived this tumultuous decade will be those who have had the greatest amount of perseverance. Sometimes, we don't really have control over what happens. Our industry is one particularly prone to the ripple effects of the economy. The key to survival is sometimes as simple as holding on until better times resurface. Sometimes, the key to not drowning is simply holding your breath. How is your level of perseverance? You've made it this far...are you going to have what it takes to survive the next down swing in the economy?
David Lykken is 40-year mortgage industry veteran who has been an owner operator in three mortgage banking companies and a software company. As a former business owner/operator, today David loves helping C-Level executives and business owners achieve extraordinary results via consulting, coaching and communications, with the objective of eliminating corporate dysfunction, establishing and communicating a clear corporate strategy while focusing on process improvement and operational efficiencies resulting in increased profitability. David has been a regular contributor on CNBC and Fox Business News and currently hosts a successful weekly radio program, “Lykken on Lending,” that is heard each Monday at noon (Central Standard Time) by thousands of mortgage professionals. He produces a daily one-minute video called “Today’s Mortgage Minute” that appears on hundreds of television, radio and newspaper Web sites across America. He may be reached by phone at (512) 501-2810 or by e-mail at [email protected].