Year-over-year, home prices increased by 7.2% to a median sale price of $260,900. February also marked the fifth consecutive year of year-over-year price increases.
A lack of supply still vexes the industry, however. Home sales went up by 1.8% in the 12 months, but last month, new listings decreased by 6.4% and overall home sales dropped by 12.9% – the third straight month of double-digit inventory drops, and the 17th straight month of year-over-year supply declines.
“The total level of home equity
reached a new peak at the close of 2016, according to recent Fed data,” said Nela Richardson, Redfin’s chief economist. “While great for homeowners, continuously strong price growth across the U.S. since 2012 has posed significant challenges for first-time buyers, especially given such low supply in affordable price-tiers. There is a silver lining on the horizon, however. Rising prices and increased equity may tip the scales for homeowners who have been delaying their decision to move up, which could add much-needed starter-home inventory to the market.”
Morning Briefing: Pending homes sales slip on tight supply
Potential January existing-home sales decline
Last month was the strongest February for price appreciation in three years, according to a report from Redfin.