Between China's slowing growth, Europe's ongoing debt crisis dragging it into recession, and the U.S. economy sputtering along, investors everywhere are hard-pressed to find ways to make money. However, one trend that appears increasingly real is a broad -- albeit slow -- recovery in the housing market. That's why I'm opting to buy into this long-term trend with my next purchase for my Real-Money Stock Picks portfolio here at the Fool.

The housing recovery is real.  Before you object too vehemently, consider several of these data points:

  • Single-family housing starts have increased 22% so far in 2012 versus last year.
  • The Case-Schiller housing price index has increased for four successive months.

However, since I'm only vaguely familiar with the industry, I want to avoid the risk of stock selection. Instead, I'll rely on the diversification of an index fund to provide me with exposure to this trend while also limiting my downside at the same time. Tomorrow, I'll be adding $1,250 -- even more than the $750 I mention in the video below -- to my real-money portfolio. To hear more about my investing thesis, listen to the video provided below.

As the Oracle of Omaha Warren Buffett has said many times since the onset of the Great Recession, America's best days are still ahead of it.  To learn more about a few ETFs that have great promise for delivering profits to shareholders in a recovering global economy, check out The Motley Fool's special free report, "3 ETFs Set to Soar During the Recovery." Just click here to access it now.

This article represents the opinion of the writer, who may disagree with the “official” recommendation position of a Motley Fool premium advisory service. We’re motley! Questioning an investing thesis -- even one of our own -- helps us all think critically about investing and make decisions that help us become smarter, happier, and richer.