Home Price Appreciation Accelerated in January


National home prices continued to increase over the first month of 2020, prior to coronavirus outbreak. Price growth will certainly decline as future months’ data is recorded.

The S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price Index, reported by S&P Dow Jones Indices, rose at a seasonally adjusted annual growth rate of 6.2% in January, faster than a 5.3% increase in December. It was the highest gain since February 2018. On a year-over-year basis, the S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price NSA Index posted a 3.9% annual gain in January, up from 3.7% in December. Going forward, national home prices are expected to increase at a slower pace due to the 2020 downturn.

Meanwhile, the Home Price Index, released by the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), rose at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.1% in January, following a 9.1% increase in December. On a year-over-year basis, the FHFA Home Price NSA Index rose by 5.2% in January, after an increase of 5.4% in December.

In addition to tracking home price changes nationwide, S&P also reported home price indexes across 20 metro areas. In January, local home prices varied and their annual growth rates ranged from -3.6% to 13.0%. Among the 20 metro areas, eight metro areas exceeded the national average of 6.2%. Seattle, Las Vegas and Phoenix had the highest home price appreciation in January. Seattle reported a 13.0% increase, followed by Las Vegas with an 8.5% increase and Phoenix with an 8.3% increase. Home prices in two metro areas declined in January. They were Chicago (-3.6%) and New York (-1.2%).

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