Home prices increased in January, moving even faster than the levels of increase seen at the end of 2017, according to the latest House Price Index from the Federal Housing Finance Agency.
Home prices increased by 0.8% from December to January, the index showed. And December’s increase of 0.3% was upwardly revised to 0.4%.
The chart below showed January’s increase in home prices was the highest monthly increase since February 2017, when home prices also rose 0.8%. August came close with an monthly increase of 0.7%.
Home prices saw the most monthly increases on the coasts, both the East and West Coast.
Across the U.S., changes in home prices from December to January ranged from a decrease of 0.7% in the West South Central division to an increase of 1.2% in the New England and Pacific divisions.
Annually, all home price changes were positive, ranging from an increase of 5.1% in the West South Central division to an increase in the double digits of 10% in the Mountain division.
West South Central: Oklahoma, Arkansas, Texas and Louisiana
New England: Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Connecticut
Pacific: Hawaii, Alaska, Washington, Oregon and California
Mountain: Montana, Idaho, Wyoming, Nevada, Utah, Colorado, Arizona and New Mexico
Mortgage rates forecast for April 2018
Just months into the year, mortgage rates have already met 2018 predictions.
In late 2017, when thirty-year fixed rates were still in the high-3s, economists put rates in the mid-4s this year.
It didn’t take long.
Rates approached 4.4% by mid-February and shot past 4-year highs.
Fortunately, rates are still low by historical standards, and today’s rateshave not deterred home buyers. Home sales are up 1.1 percent from a year ago according to the National Association of Realtors.
Still, it’s no time to sit by and hope for a massive rate drop, the chances of which are slim to none. Rates available now are likely the best we’ll see in 2018, despite the recent push upward.
Freddie Mac: Mortgage rates at highest levels in more than 4 years
Mortgage rates just broke a barrier not surpassed in 220 weeks.
Since January 2014, rates had remained below 4.45%, that is, until the late stages of March, according to mortgage agency Freddie Mac.
The 30-year fixed rate average is up 67 basis points, or 0.67%, compared to lows reached in September.
What does that mean for the home buyer or refinancing homeowner? A lot.
Home buyers will pay over $100 more per month for a $350,000 home with 10% down
A homeowner looking to refinance may discover that the new loan may not yield any savings at all.