U.S. house prices rose in April, up 0.2 percent from the previous month, according to the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) House Price Index (HPI). House prices rose 5.5 percent from April 2019 to April 2020. The previously reported 0.1 percent increase for March 2020 remains unchanged.
For the nine census divisions, seasonally adjusted monthly house price changes from March 2020 to April 2020 ranged from -0.5 percent in the South Atlantic division to +0.8 percent in the West South Central division. The 12-month changes were all positive, ranging from +5.0 percent in the Middle Atlantic division to +6.8 percent in the Mountain division.
“U.S. house prices posted another positive monthly increase in April,” according to Dr. Lynn Fisher, Deputy Director of the Division of Research and Statistics at FHFA. “Regionally, results varied. Two of the usually stronger growth areas, the Mountain and Pacific divisions, were flat over the month but other divisions continued to experience strong price appreciation even with all of the COVID-19 challenges. Both the New England and South Atlantic regions saw monthly decreases in prices, but all divisions posted positive year over year growth of at least 5 percent. The number of transactions used to estimate the HPI were slightly down from March to April but were still a robust sample. We expect the normal spring bump in sales was pushed off by the COVID-19 shutdowns and may extend into the summer months as states reopen and real estate sales pick back up.”
FHFA produces the nation’s only public, freely available house price indexes (HPIs) that measure changes in single-family house prices based on data that cover all 50 states and over 400 American cities and extend back to the mid-1970s. The HPIs are built on tens of millions of home sales and offer insights about house price fluctuations at the national, census division, state, metro area, county, ZIP code, and census tract levels. The FHFA HPIs use a fully transparent methodology based upon a weighted, repeat-sales statistical technique to analyze transaction data from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. FHFA releases data and reports on a quarterly and monthly basis. The flagship FHFA HPI uses seasonally adjusted, purchase-only data, unless otherwise noted. Additional indexes are based on other data including refinances, FHA mortgages, and real property records. All the indexes can be downloaded from the FHFA website.
Monthly index values and appreciation rate estimates for recent periods are provided in the tables and graphs on the following pages. Downloadable data and HPI release dates for all of 2020 are available here: https://www.fhfa.gov/HPI.
The next HPI report will be released July 22, 2020 with monthly data through May 2020.