Home price gains remain solid in August: Case-Shiller

Average prices rose 3.2% in August, according to the Case-Shiller National Home Price NSA Index, released Tuesday

Home prices climbed 3.2 percent year-over-year in August, according to the latest S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price NSA Index, released Tuesday. The uptick is modest — in the preceding month, home prices recorded a 3.1 percent annual gain.

“The U.S. National Home Price NSA Index trend remained intact with a year-over-year price change of 3.2 percent,” Philip Murphy, managing director and global head of index governance at S&P Dow Jones Indices, said in a statement. “However, a shift in regional leadership may be underway beneath the headline national index.”

Regionally, some turnaround was observed. The highest year-over-year gains took place in Phoenix, Charlotte, and Tampa — at 6.3, 4.5 and 4.3 percent, respectively. Las Vegas, which previously boasted the second highest home price growth in the U.S., dropped to eighth place in August.

“Meanwhile, the Southeast region included three of the top four cities,” Murphy said. “Charlotte, Tampa, and Atlanta all recorded solid year-over-year performance with price changes of 4.5 percent, 4.3 percent, and 4.0 percent, respectively. In the Northwest, Seattle’s year-over-year change turned positive (0.7 percent) after three consecutive months of negative year-over-year price changes.”

“Persistently low mortgage rates have seemingly ended what might have otherwise been a home price race-to-the-bottom this late in our economic expansion,” Ralph B. McLaughlin, deputy chief economist and executive of research and insights for CoreLogic, said in a statement. “Mortgage rates this low at the end of an economic cycle is nearly unprecedented, and may be very well keeping the housing market – and U.S. economy – afloat.”

Email Veronika Bondarenko