Wednesday, April 2, 2014

FHFA: Metro Denver, Boulder, and Ft. Collins-Loveland Show Biggest Home Price Gains

The House Price Index (HPI) rose from the fourth quarter of 2012 to the same period of 2013 in every Colorado metro area except Pueblo.  Metro Denver, Ft. Collins-Loveland, and Boulder all reported the highest rate of increases in the home price index reported since 2001.  Greeley's growth rate was near a twelve year high. Outside these areas, home price growth was more subdued.

The fourth-quarter 2013 HPI data, released last month  by the Federal Housing Finance Agency for hundreds of metropolitan areas nationwide, showed year-over-year gains of more than five percent in all metros except Grand Junction and Pueblo, showing home prices well outpacing the US consumer price index.  The fourth quarter of 2013 marks the eighth quarter in a row in which the home price index rose year over year in metro Denver, Greeley, Boulder, and the Ft. Collins-Loveland area.

Year over year, the 1-year changes in each metro area were:
Boulder +9.3%
Colo Springs +3.1%
Denver-Aurora +10.9%
Fort Coll-Loveland +8.4%
Grand Junction +5.7%
Greeley +7.3%
Pueblo -0.1%

The first graph shows the year-over-year change in each region for each quarter. For the sake of visual clarity, the graph only shows data back only to 2007.

Over the past two years, growth in the home price index have become increasingly common, with southern and western Colorado lagging other areas. For metro areas overall, there is now a trend of growth in the home price index, however, with Pueblo and Grand Junction recently joining the other metros in reporting price gains.

The second graph shows the actual HPI values for each quarter going back to 2000. In general, the HPI began to plateau during 2007 and was declining in most areas by 2008. A big exception in the Grand Junction area which continued to increase rapidly well into 2008.

Since the peak period of the first quarter of 2007, the HPI has fallen in all regions. The following shows the change in the HPI compared to the peak period, as of the second quarter of 2013.

Boulder +8.2%
Colo Springs -6.8%
Denver-Aurora +7.6%
Fort Coll-Loveland +7.2%
Grand Junction -20.1%
Greeley -6.8%
Pueblo -11.6%

This latest report overall shows a continuation of earlier trends shows in this report. The most rapidly recovering markets are those markets with the strongest job growth: Metro Denver and Northern Colorado.
Pueblo, and Grand Junction are facing some of the highest unemployment rates in Colorado, and not surprisingly show some of the weakest growth in the home price index.

See here for other home price indices.

The index values presented and analyzed in this article are not seasonally adjusted. The data in this article is taken from the FHFA "all-transactions" data. The index is based on home price data obtained through the GSEs such as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac