After a series of mediocre forecasts, on Tuesday UNCC Economist John Connaughton said he finally has some good news.
North Carolina's economy is growing this year, and just wait until next year.
In his forecast on Tuesday, Connaughton said things are looking up for North Carolina.
He said 13 of the state's 15 economic sectors will have seen a surge in output and hiring in 2013, and our economy will grow at a healthy rate of 3 percent by the end of this year and into 2014.
So what changed?
The housing recovery is real, with sales and prices climbing, and Connaughton said that consumer confidence is up.
"People are feeling a lot better than they have any time in the last six or seven years," he said.
That makes people spend money, the economy's biggest driver, but not everyone's confidence is riding high.
The computer lab at one unemployment office in east Charlotte was packed on Tuesday with those who can't find work.
"I have been on 12 or 13 interviews since I was terminated from my job," said Michael Fenner.
"I have been looking for four and a half months. It has been hard," said Ervin Whitaker.
Connaughton said the jobs are coming slowly. North Carolina started 2013 with a 9.5 percent unemployment rate; he expects it to drop to 8.6 by the end of the year.
It's a slow recovery that he thinks will really gain steam after the New Year.
"Particularly in 2014, people will start to say this is a good economy," he said.
The usual suspects are expected to do the most hiring this year – hospitality and business services. What Connaughton said will be new for 2014 is that the most jobs will come in construction and manufacturing.