Black Knight Financial Services has released its report on February housing prices and the news looks good. It looks even better if you consider it within the context of the last decade.
Home prices—for the nation as a whole—rose by .7 percent from January to February, which brought them to levels that were 5.3 percent higher than the same period last year. The home price index (HPI) registered at $254,000.
If you want to stretch even further back in time, you can compare February’s results with the nadir of the past decade. The HPI reached a low point, at just more than $184,000, during 2012. February’s numbers represent an average total more than 27.5 percent higher than that total. There are still higher peaks to be accomplished, of course, but we’re a lot closer to the peak than we are to the low point of the last decade. The HPI peaked at $267,000 during 2006, 5 percent higher than the current value.
At least a portion of those rising numbers can be attributed to states out West. Three of the Top 5 states in terms of HPI increases fall within the Pacific time zone: Washington (no. 1, at 1.8 percent), while Oregon and California both saw 1.3 percent increases. Colorado (Mountain time) came in at no. 2 with a 1.7 percent increase, while Hawaii looked good at 1.2 percent.
Those state increases themselves can be attributed to actions within respective metropolitan areas. Washington’s increase was certainly driven by its largest city, as Seattle saw the second-highest rise among metropolitan areas, at 2.1 percent. The only region that ranked higher was San Jose, which increased its HPI by 2.4 percent thanks to the continued allure of Silicon Valley.
San Francisco, Santa Cruz and Sacramento (all feeding off that same trend) gave California a total of four cities in the Top 10 metropolitan areas. Denver, Boulder and Fort Collins managed to land at nos. 4, 5 and 6, respectively.
Not everyone was as please during February as those states, however. Three states actually saw their HPI fall during February: New Jersey, Connecticut and Rhode Island. This unfortunate trio was—like their higher performing brethren—impacted by a number of relevant metropolitan areas. Of the 10 worst-performing in the United States, seven of them fell within the aforementioned three states.