For the first time in nearly a year, more Americans say they expect their financial situation to improve over the next 12 months than say it’ll stay the same. Fannie Mae’s Monthly National Housing Survey shows an increasingly positive attitude toward the housing market and the broader economy among surveyed Americans. The results of the survey found a six percent jump in the number of people who say the economy is on the right track and a four percent spike in the number of participants who expect home prices to increase in the next year. Doug Duncan, vice president and chief economist at Fannie Mae, said there’s been a marked improvement in consumer sentiment regarding the direction of the economy, personal finances, and future home price expectations following the fourth-quarter pickup in the economy. On average, Americans say they expect home prices to rise by 0.8 percent in the next 12 months, up from 0.2 percent in November. Also, 71 percent of Americans say it is a good time to buy a home, which is a 3 percent increase from the month before. More here and here.