Portland-area home prices climb 7.8% year-over-year
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on August 25, 2015 at 11:38 AM, updated August 25, 2015 at 11:41 AM
Portland-area home prices grew faster in June than they did nationwide, according to the Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller home price index released Tuesday.
From May to June, housing prices swelled by 1 percent nationally and 1.5 percent in the Portland area. The year-over-year increase was 4.5 percent nationally and 7.8 percent in Portland. Only Denver (10.2 percent), San Francisco (9.5 percent) and Dallas (8.2 percent) posted larger increases from June to June among the 20 cities surveyed.
Miami (7.7 percent) and Seattle (7.4 percent) were right on Portland’s tail.
David M. Blitzer, managing director and chairman of the index committee, said in a statement that national price gains “have been consistent as the unemployment rate declined with steady inflation and an unchanged [Federal Reserve] policy.”
Blitzer added that housing starts and sales have been “the missing piece in the housing picture.” Sales of existing homes reached an annualized rate of 5.6 million in July, Blitzer said, which is the strongest figure since 2007.
“Housing starts topped 1.2 million units at annual rates, with almost two-thirds of the total in single-family homes,” Blitzer said. “Sales of new homes are also trending higher. These data point to a stronger housing sector to support the economy.
“Two possible clouds on the horizon are a possible Fed rate increase and volatility in the stock market.”
Svenja Gudell, chief economist at the real estate website Zillow, said in an email that the housing market “has largely remained on the same course.” The national monthly climb in prices – which was 1.2 percent between March and April and again between April and May – continued to level off, which Gudell characterized as “a steady slowdown.”
That’s mostly positive for the market, Gudell said, and will “eventually lead to more inventory and more stable growth.”
Bill Banfield, vice president at mortgage lender Quicken Loans, echoed the theme of consistency.
“The song remains the same for home prices – modest monthly increase and steady yearly growth,” Banfield said in an email. “This is expected to continue as long as the pattern of eager buyers chasing a small housing supply persists.”
July was a record-setting month in the Portland housing market, according to a recent report from the Regional Multiple Listing Service, with 3,452 homes sold. The average sale price through July was $351,600, a 6.1 percent year-over-year increase, that report showed.
— Luke Hammill