Housing Value Appreciation

.. U.S. housing prices rose nationwide in August, up 1.5% from the previous month, based on the FHFA Housing Price Index (HPI). Housing prices rose 8.0% from August 2019 to August 2020.

If you purchased a housing unit in 2019Q2 at $260,200 (the ACS 2019 median housing value), the value of the unit in 2020Q2 would be $271,000, an increase of 4.2%. A good deal in this era of low interest rates.

U.S. housing prices posted a strong increase in August .. the 1.5% increase is the largest one-month price increase observed since the start of the HPI measurement in 1991. This large month-over-month gain contributes to an already strong increase in prices over the summer. These price gains can be attributed to the historically low interest rates, rebounding housing demand and continued supply constraints.

The HPI has various limitations as a measure to assess the housing market. One important limitation is that it a measure in isolation; other related demographic-economic measures are not included. This is unlike the American Community Survey (ACS) estimates of the median housing value ($MHV), used as an annual, year-over-year measure of housing value appreciation.

Median Housing Value
The U.S. ACS 1-year estimate of median housing value ($MHV) increased from $229,700 in 2018 to $240,500 in 2019. The ACS 2020 estimate, which will be impacted by the pandemic, will not be available until September 2021. The ProximityOne 2020 estimate of $MHV is $270,500.

Click this API link to view a CSV-like file showing the 2019 median household income and median housing value by state. Join me in a Data Analytics Web Session (see below) to integrate these data into a map view like shown below. Add other data.

Patterns of Median Housing Value by State

– view developed using ProximityOne CV XE GIS
– click graphic for larger view

An advantage of using the ACS or ACS-like $MHV data is that this measure is synchronized with other related measures, like total population, total housing units, housing units by tenure and age built and so on. Though a popular measure to assess geographically comparable housing values, the $MHV has many limitations. A key limitation is that few survey responders really know the value of their home. Other limitations have to do with the definition itself and how the data are collected/developed. ACS $MHV measures value of only occupied housing units and excludes houses on 10 or more acres and housing units in multi-unit structures. See more. While there are other Federal sources of $MHV, it remains that the usabilty aspects of the ACS or ACS-like measures are second to none.

Learn more — Join me in the Situation & Outlook Web Sessions
Join me in a Situation & Outlook Web Session where we discuss topics relating to measuring and interpreting the where, what, when, how and how much demographic-economic change is occurring and it’s impact.

About the Author
— Warren Glimpse is former senior Census Bureau statistician responsible for national scope statistical programs and innovative data access and use operations. He is also the former associate director of the U.S. Office of Federal Statistical Policy and Standards for data access and use. He has more than 20 years of experience in the private sector developing data resources and tools for integration and analysis of geographic, demographic, economic and business data. Contact Warren. Join Warren on LinkedIn.

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