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Home Prices Hit Record Highs Nationally and in Seven Cities

Even with interest rates at a two-decade high and mortgage applications and existing home sales slipping back to 20th-century levels, home prices continue to rise. The S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller indices increased for the seventh consecutive month while the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) reports a ninth straight gain in its Housing Price Index (HMI). Case-Shiller’s U.S. National Home Price NSA Index, which covers all nine U.S. census divisions, reported a 2.6 percent annual change in August, up from 1.0 percent in the previous month. The 10-City Composite showed an increase of 3.0 percent, compared to 1.0 percent in July and the 20-City Composite annual gain rose from 2.0 percent to 2.2 percent.   CoreLogic Chief Economist Dr. Selma Hepp says any respite from surging prices might only be temporary. “Although housing prices have increased significantly this year, climbing 5 percent from the early-year low, higher mortgage rates, and seasonal trends will slow further monthly gains – with some possible declines in winter months ,” she said. “Nevertheless, the year-to-date gains indicate that growth will pick up through the end of 2023 compared to last year’s slump during this time period.” Chicago posted the greatest appreciation among the 20 cities for the fourth consecutive month. Seven of the 20 reported lower prices in the year ending August 2023 than in the year ending July 2023 while 12 cities reported higher prices. Nineteen of the 20 cities show a positive trend in year-over-year price acceleration compared to the prior month.

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