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Home Prices Rise at Highest Rate Since 2008, Report Shows

vivienda - USA - El American

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The median home price in the United States soared 11.2% in the year ending January, the highest annual growth since 2006 and with current prices above the pre-bubble highs of 2008.

The Case-Shiller index, which measures U.S. national housing trends based on prices in major metropolitan areas, has also recorded rising real estate prices in all 20 urban areas it analyzes.

The Federal Housing Finance Agency’s (FHFA) price index rose 12% year-over-year in January, a record not recorded since the data began to be compiled in 1991.

According to real estate portal Redfin, in the four weeks ending March 21, 39% of home sales closed above the initial asking price, up from 23.9% a year earlier.

Analysts expect a moderation in demand with rising mortgage rates, whose financing is now at its highest since June after falling below 3% last summer for the first time.

According to the U.S. National Association of Realtors, inflation-adjusted median home prices are at levels not seen since before the bubble burst in the 2008 subprime crisis.

The same organization estimates that as of the end of February, housing inventory nationwide stood at 1.03 million homes for sale, the lowest level since data collection began in 1982.

Last month, the New York Fed released a report showing that the end of 2020 saw the highest volume of mortgage originations in history.

However, the New York Fed also shows that mortgage originations are originating from households with a higher credit score than before the 2008 crisis, when the quality of mortgages and their packaging in derivative products branded as insurance sparked the great global economic crisis.

According to a report by mortgage giant Freddie Mac, many families refinanced mortgages taking advantage of low-interest rates and rising prices to obtain liquidity from those assets, with a 42% increase in 2020, something not seen since 2007, just before the financial crisis.