Steel Markets

Home Prices Accelerate to Near Record Highs in March

Written by Sandy Williams

Home prices shot up 13.2% in March compared to the same month in 2020 and increased 12% from February. The S&P Core Logic Case-Shiller National Home Price Index reported double-digit gains for all 20 cities in the composite index except Chicago, which posted a 9% increase. Phoenix, San Diego and Seattle reported the highest year-over-year gains at 20%, 19.1%, and 18.3%, respectively.

“Housing prices continued to rise robustly in March 2021,” said Craig J. Lazzara, managing director and global head of index Investment strategy at S&P DJI. “More than 30 years of S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller data put these results into historical context. The National Composite’s 13.2% gain was last exceeded more than 15 years ago in December 2005 and lies very comfortably in the top decile of historical performance.”

The COVID-19 pandemic resulted in a surge of urban apartment dwellers moving from cities to homes in the suburbs, setting off bidding wars amidst a limited supply of existing and new homes available for sale. Lazzara added that more time and data is necessary to determine if there is “a secular change in preferences, leading to a permanent shift in the demand curve for housing.”

Government data in April shows the upward trend in pricing continuing as construction costs soar and housing inventory constricts.

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