Among all of the doom and gloom regarding the housing market, the economy and the price of oil, I read an inspiring article last month by Robert Freedman in Realtor magazine. In it Freedman explains that while there is no current great demand for new housing, the future looks bright. And he points to some data to back up his belief that’s apparently been hiding on the back page of the newspaper.

News flash: Americans have started having children again. As a nation, our production in the baby department decreased dramatically over the last four decades. But according to Freedman’s article, the U.S. birth rate is now the highest it’s been in the last 40 years. And there’s more. Check out these statistics:

• The U.S. census bureau reports that our nation’s population as of Jan 1, 2008 was 303,146,284. That’s almost a 1 percent increase, or 3 million more people, from 2007.
• Americans are having babies to the tune of one every eight seconds.
• The rate of U.S. deaths is one every 11 seconds.
• The rate of international immigration to the U.S. is one every 30 seconds.
• All this means the total rate of U.S. growth is one new person every 13 seconds.

According to Freedman’s research, the spike in birth rate can be largely attributed to immigrant households, particularly Hispanics. So, thanks to our Hispanic friends and all immigrants contributing to the melting pot of America. I’m happy to say the Poliminos are doing our part too, having welcomed in the birth of our second child, Malia Grace, last month.

For realtors, 3 million new faces last year means the country may see strong growth and a demand for new housing, both for currently expanding families and in the future as these kids grow up and buy their own homes. It’s true that today’s children will not be in the market for a house for another 20 years, but as a young practitioner in the business I have time to wait.