But condo prices in the San Francisco Bay Area fell year-over-year again, and in New York City have been flat for years.
By Wolf Richter for WOLF STREET.
The national average doesn’t do justice to the craziness in specific housing markets, but it’s crazy enough: House prices soared by 13.2% from a year ago, the biggest increase since December 2005, on the eve before it all came unglued starting in 2006. The National Case-Shiller Home Price Index today is based on a three-month average of sales recorded in public records in January, February, and March. That’s the timing we’re looking at.
The Case-Shiller Index is based on the “sales pairs method,” comparing the sales price of a house in the current month to the price of the same house when it sold previously. Home improvements are taken into account. The index tracks the amount of dollars it takes to buy the same house over time. This makes the index a measure of house price inflation. And that’s what we’re looking at, not a miracle of some sort, but house price inflation.
The March Queen of House Price Inflation: Seattle.
House prices in the Seattle metro spiked by 4.7% in March from February, the largest month-to-month spike of house price inflation in the data going back to 1990, after having spiked 2.8% in February from January, to create a new WTF moment. Year-over-year, the index has spiked by 18.3%, the third-hottest annual house price inflation on this list, after Phoenix (+20.0%) and San Diego (+19.1%). House prices have more than tripled (+215%) since January 2000:
The long-term Queen of House Price Inflation: Los Angeles:
Prices of single-family houses in the Los Angeles metro jumped by 2.3% in March from February and by 13.4% year-over-year. The overall index value for Los Angeles of 333 indicates that house prices skyrocketed by 233% since January 2000, despite the collapse in the middle, which makes Los Angeles the most splendid housing bubble on this list.
There has been a big divergence in recent years, following the same formula during Housing Bubble 1 before it imploded:
- Low-tier house prices (black line) skyrocketed faster than the others and quintupled since January 2000, for another WTF moment. During Housing Bubble 1, they also collapsed the fastest and the most.
- High-tier house prices (green line) show slower price movements, up and down, though they too have spiked recently.
- Condo prices (red line) have risen “only” 6.6% year-over-year, less than half the rate of house prices:
San Francisco Bay Area: everything surges but condos.
The Case-Shiller Index covers five of the Bay Area’s counties: San Francisco, San Mateo (northern part of Silicon Valley), Alameda and Contra Costa (East Bay), and Marin (North Bay).
House prices spiked by 3.2% in March from February and by 12.2% year-over-year. They have more than tripled since 2000 (+207%).
- Low-tier and mid-tier house prices (black and blue lines in the chart below) spiked by over 15%.
- High-tier prices (green line) rose by 11.0%.
- But condo prices (red line) fell year-over-year and are below April 2018. And there is no shortage of condos for sale. Condo prices have gone nowhere for three years:
San Diego metro:
House prices spiked by 3.2% in March from February, by 19.1% year-over-year, the second-hottest annual house price inflation on today’s list of the Most Splendid Housing Bubbles, behind Phoenix. Prices have more than tripled (+220%) since 2000:
The charts below are on the same scale as San Diego to show the relative magnitude of house price inflation over the past two decades in each market.
New York City metro: low-tier house prices spike, condos flat since 2017.
For the Case-Shiller Index, the vast and diverse New York City metro includes New York City plus numerous counties in the states of New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut.
House prices overall rose 0.6% in March from February and are up 12.3% year-over-year. But by price tiers, a massive divergence emerges:
- Low-tier house prices (black line) jumped 17.3% year-over-year.
- High-tier house prices (green line) spiked recently, after not moving all that much for nearly a decade, and have only recently risen above their 2006 peak.
- Condo prices (red line) ticked down for the month and are on the same level as in July 2017. Condos are concentrated in Manhattan and some other markets near Manhattan.
House prices jumped 1.8% for the month and 12.2% year-over-year. They have nearly tripled (+181%) since 2000, and now match the crazy peak of Housing Bubble 1:
House prices jumped 2.5% for the month and by 13.5% year-over-year:
Washington D.C. metro:
House prices jumped 2.4% in March and by 12.2% year-over-year:
House prices jumped 2.6% for the month and 14.9% year-over-year. Not shown in the chart here, but similar to New York City and San Francisco, condo prices haven’t budged much over the past eight month.
House prices rose 1.9% for the month and 13.7% year-over-year:
House prices spiked 3.3% for the month and are up 13.4% year-over-year:
House prices spiked 3.3% for the month and a holy-moly 20.0% year-over-year, the hottest annual house price inflation among the Most Splendid Housing Bubbles here, ahead of San Diego and Seattle:
Las Vegas metro:
House prices jumped 2.3% for the month and 10.6% year-over-year:
House prices jumped 1.7% for the month and 13.4% year-over-year. The index is up 120% since 2000. In the remaining cities in the 20-city Case-Shiller Index, the two-decade house price inflation is less than 120% — for example, Minneapolis is at 101% and Chicago at 56%. This makes Dallas the last entry on this list of the most Splendid House Price Inflation in America:
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