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Home prices lose momentum into 2023

September prices down 1% from August: Case-Shiller Index

Case-Shiller, Home Prices, Housing Market, Residential Real Estate

(Getty)

Not only did year-over-year U.S. home price growth cool in September, but home prices themselves fell from August as the market continues to slow.

Prices remain about 10 percent higher than they were a year ago, according to the S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price NSA Index, but growth has slowed. The index recorded a 10.6 percent annual gain in September, down from 12.9 percent in the previous month.

In fact, the national home price index dropped 0.8 percent month-over-month and the 10-city and 20-city composites both fell by 1.2 percent. The comparisons to August are seasonally adjusted.

“As has been the case for the past several months, our September 2022 report reflects short-term declines and medium-term deceleration in housing prices across the U.S.,” Craig Lazzara, managing director at S&P Dow Jones Indices, said in a statement.

Cities in the South and Southeast had the highest annual growth, with home prices in Miami and Tampa nearly 25 percent above last year. Homes in Charlotte and Atlanta, which placed third and fourth, cost about 17 percent more than a year ago.

The two worst-performing cities — or best, if you are a buyer — were San Francisco and Seattle, with annual price increases of 2 percent and 6 percent, respectively. All 20 cities in the Case-Shiller Index had lower price increases over the 12 months ending in September versus the year ending in August.

The Case-Shiller Index uses a three-month moving average to determine monthly prices. The latest report, for September, uses data from sales that closed beginning in July. The average interest rate for a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage rose above 7 percent in October, indicating that further declines in growth rate or even in absolute prices could be in store.

The average rate has since fallen to 6.58 percent, its second decline in two weeks. However, many homebuyers and sellers remain sidelined as the Federal Reserve slows the economy to confront inflation.

“As the Federal Reserve continues to move interest rates higher, mortgage financing continues to be more expensive and housing becomes less affordable,” said Lazzara. “Given the continuing prospects for a challenging macroeconomic environment, home prices may well continue to weaken.”