Home Prices Up Nationally, But Down Out West

U.S. home-sale prices increased 2.9% in January compared to a year ago, to a median of $285,900. Last month's price jump represents a rebound from December's 1.5% increase, the smallest year-over-year price increase recorded since March 2012.
"Things are looking good for buyers in 2019. The supply of homes for sale is increasing faster than it has in nearly four years," said Redfin chief economist Daryl Fairweather. "December was a rough month for home sales, but homeowners appear to be undeterred in the new year as more are listing their homes for sale. We predicted price growth would slow down and that prices would drop in coastal cities like San Francisco and Seattle, but we didn't know how sellers would react to a cooler market. It's encouraging to see that listings are up--it means that sellers aren't taking the ball and going home."
Market SummaryJanuary 2019Month-Over-MonthYear-Over-Year
Median sale price$285,900-2.1%2.9%
Homes sold179,500-15.5%-7.6%
New listings270,80068.3%4.4%
All Homes for sale748,1001.1%6.3%
Median days on market5761
Months of supply4.20.70.6
Sold above list16.7%-1.4%-3.5%
Median Off-Market Redfin Estimate$298,8005.6%6.3%
Average Sale-to-list97.3%-0.3%-0.4%
Home prices fell year over year in 10 of the 81 largest metro areas Redfin tracks, including San Francisco (-5.0%) and PortlandOregon (-1.3%). This is a major shift for two markets that consistently posted strong price growth throughout most of 2018 and where prices haven't declined significantly since 2012. In Seattle, prices were still growing last month, but barely, up just 0.6% year over year, and seem to be following a similar trajectory as their West Coast counterparts.
Completed home sales nationally fell for the sixth consecutive month in January, down 7.6% from a year earlier. Home sales declined in 57 of the 81 largest metro areas.
The number of homes newly listed for sale in January rose from a year earlier (+4.4%), helping to push the total number of homes for sale up 6.3%, the biggest supply increase since May of 2015.

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