National home prices grew at an unsustainable pace in March, reaching an all-time high. This indicates that the imbalanced market with strong demand and record-low inventory continued to put upward pressures on home prices. However, keep in mind this is a backward-looking reading.
The S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price Index, reported by S&P Dow Jones Indices, rose at a seasonally adjusted annual growth rate of 28.2% in March 2022, following a 27.4% increase in February. National home prices are now 60.7% higher than their last peak during the housing boom in March 2006. On a year-over-year basis, the S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price NSA Index posted a 20.6% annual gain in March, after a 20.0% increase in February. The year-over-year home price appreciation slowed a little during the last quarter of 2021, and accelerated in the first three months of 2022, before the spring home-buying season from April to June.
Meanwhile, the Home Price Index, released by the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), increased at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 19.0% in March, following a 25.0% increase in February. On a year-over-year basis, the FHFA Home Price NSA Index rose by 19.0% in March, following a 19.4% increase in February.
In addition to tracking national home price changes, S&P CoreLogic reported home price indexes across 20 metro areas in March. All 20 metro areas reported positive home price appreciation and their annual growth rates ranged from 8.8% to 57.1%. Among all 20 metro areas, fifteen metro areas exceeded the national average of 28.2%. Dallas led the way with a 57.1% increase, followed by Tampa with a 49.9% increase and Seattle with a 49.2% increase.
The scatter plot below lists the 20 major U.S. metropolitan areas’ annual growth rates in February and in March 2022. The X-axis presents the annual growth rates in February; the Y-axis presents the annual growth rates in March. Seven out of the 20 metro areas had a deceleration in home price growth, including Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco, Chicago, Boston, Portland, and Seattle.