S&P Case-Shiller Home Price Indices reported slower home price growth in November. Rising mortgage rates and high home prices sidelined first-time and moderate-income buyers and investors who fear buying at the peak of today’s housing markets only to face lower home values when home prices cool off.
November’s National Home Price Index reported a year-over-year gain of 18.80 percent in home prices year-over-year. The 20-City Home Price Index, which, real estate pros frequently use to estimate home pricing trends, reported that U.S. home prices rose 18.30 percent year-over-year in November.
20-City Home Price Index: Arizona and Florida Post Top Gains in Home Prices
Home prices in the Phoenix, Arizona metro area rose by 32.2 percent year-over-year in November. Tampa, Florida followed with year-over-year home price growth of 29.0 percent. Miami, Florida held third place in the Case-Shiller 20-City Home Price Index with year-over-year home price growth of 26.6 percent.
The covid pandemic influenced home buying trends in multiple ways. Closures of workspaces, loss of childcare options and local restrictions and regulations designed to prevent the spread of covid caused many people to seek alternatives to commuting to work. Working from home allowed homeowners to transition from daily commutes to work to buying bigger homes to accommodate changing family and work needs.
Covid influenced many home buyers to look for homes in less-congested metro areas; Metro areas in the mountain west have grown as buyers from congested coastal metro areas bought homes in less populated areas in states including Arizona, Colorado, and Idaho.
Rising Home Prices and Mortgage Rates Impact Affordability
Rapidly rising home prices, buyer competition, and higher mortgage rates continued to challenge first-time and moderate-income home buyers, but demand for homes remains high. Analysts expect high demand and short supplies of available homes will continue to dominate housing markets in 2022.
The Naples, Florida metro area held first place in a survey of emerging housing markets; the North-Port, Sarasota, and Bradenton, Florida metro areas held second place in emerging markets. International buyers and vacation rentals are driving home sales as covid-related travel restrictions are lifted.
Metro areas including Raleigh, North Carolina, and Fort Wayne, Indiana held their own among popular vacation destinations. Foreign-born home buyers are returning to U.S. housing markets from covid-related travel restrictions. Danielle Hale, the chief economist at Realtor.com, said: “The idea that people are traveling more and that borders are a little bit more open than they were gives international buyers the confidence to get [into the housing market.] We do see an increase in international shopping within a lot of these areas.”
Emerging real estate markets and recovery of formerly stable housing markets indicate that the worst effects of the pandemic are easing but the quick spread of covid’s omicron variant suggests that complete economic recovery from the pandemic is a gradual process.