Four Out of 10 Americans Fear Real Estate Bubble

Four out of 10 Americans think we're in a real-estate bubble that's likely to burst within three years, according to a poll released last Thursday by Costa Mesa-based Experian and The Gallup Organization.

And for the second straight month, consumers appeared concerned about their credit ratings and their ability to pay their debts, survey authors said.

The monthly Experian-Gallup Personal Credit Index, launched in March, dropped from an initial "baseline" score of 100 to 82 in April, company officials said. May's survey shows only slight improvement, with a score of 86.

"We're starting to see some real concerns out there on the consumers' part about what is the prospect for the economy," said Ed Ojdana, group president of Experian Interactive.

Interest rates aren't a major worry. Seventy-five percent of those polled expect mortgage rates to rise, but half of those respondents thought they wouldn't go up more than one percentage point.

That may be why one in five consumers planning to take out a home loan in the next six months will choose an adjustable-rate mortgage, the survey found.

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