It won’t be until the end of May before we have Case-Shiller numbers for March and the March numbers will really be the January-March average numbers. That means, it will be a while before Case-Shiller numbers show the impact of the Coronavirus.

Remember, way back 2 months ago? The market has changed a ton since then but it’s fascinating to see what the market was like in the olden days.

Phoenix was still the hottest metro covered by Case-Shiller in February 2020.

Surprisingly, house prices in Seattle were bouncing back strong after falling faster than in any other market during the second half of 2018. Seattle prices made it all the way back to summer of 2018 levels.

But real house prices were still falling slightly (Feb 2019 to Feb 2020) in New York (-1%) and Chicago (-2%), For the U.S. as a whole, real inflation-adjusted house prices were up 2% from a year earlier.

House Price Momentum

House prices were continuing to gain upward momentum in February. Prices increased more the last 12 months compared to the previous 12 months in 11 cities covered by Case-Shiller cities. Prices increased more slowly in only 6 metros.

Price Appreciation Trends

Seattle is crazy! After being the hottest metro in the U.S. for over a year, prices actually fell in Seattle… but then they took off again.

Was it the foreign money that came into the Seattle housing market leaving? The job market remained hot in 2018 when prices were falling so that wasn’t it. Maybe it was the rising mortgage rates from late 2017 to late 2018 having a delayed impact on demand. Did houses in Seattle just get so expensive that buyers gave up?

Leave a comment, if you can explain the Seattle real estate market.

The U.S. was seeing (nominal) appreciation running at 3% from last May through November but that increased to 4% from December 2019 through February 2020.

Note. You can find interactive versions of these charts for all 20 Case-Shiller metros here.

The February 2020 data is the latest available from Case-Shiller as I write this on April 28. The data is a 3-month moving average so what they call February is really the December-February average. It might be better to think of the February data as running quarterly data, that is, data for the quarter ending in February 2020.

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