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Home prices continued an upward trend in February 2024, according to the S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller Indices. Of the 20 major metro markets analyzed, 18 reported month-over-month price increases.

The U.S. National Index, the 20-City Composite, and the 10-City Composite all rose month-over-month for the first time since October 2023 with pre-seasonality adjustment increases of 0.6%, 0.9% and 1.0%, respectively. After seasonal adjustment, the U.S. National Index posted a month-over-month increase of 0.4%, while the 20-City and the 10-City Composite Indices both reported month-over-month increases of 0.6%.

“The housing backdrop today is one that is defying expectations. While interest rates are high and housing affordability is stretched across the country, home prices are still rising,” says Zonda chief economist Ali Wolf. “This highlights just how out of whack housing supply and demand are, even at today’s prices.”

Brian D. Luke, head of commodities, real and digital assets at S&P Dow Jones Indices, say, “Following last year’s decline, U.S. home prices are at or near all-time highs. Our National Composite rose by 6.4% in February, the fastest annual rate since November 2022. Our 10- and 20-City Composite indices are currently at all-time highs."

"For the third consecutive month, all cities reported increases in annual prices, with four currently at all-time highs: San Diego, Los Angeles, Washington, D.C., and New York. On a seasonal adjusted basis, our National, 10- and 20- City Composite indices continue to break through previous all-time highs set last year," he says.

On a year-over-year basis, the 10-City Composite showed an increase of 8.0%, up from a 7.4% increase in the previous month. The 20-City Composite posted a year-over-year increase of 7.3%, up from a 6.6% increase in the previous month.

The indices reveal that San Diego continued to report the highest year-over-year gain among the 20 cities with an 11.4% increase in February, followed by Chicago and Detroit, with increases of 8.9%. In February, Portland, while still holding the lowest rank after reporting two consecutive months of the smallest year-over-year growth, had a significant annual increase of 2.2%.

“Since the previous peak in prices in 2022, this marks the second time home prices have pushed higher in the face of economic uncertainty. The first decline followed the start of the Federal Reserve’s hiking cycle. The second decline followed the peak in average mortgage rates last October. Enthusiasm for potential Fed cuts and lower mortgage rates appears to have supported buyer behavior, driving the 10- and 20- City Composites to new highs,” Luke adds.