US house prices increased by record levels in the second quarter of 2021, according to quarterly figures from the National Association of Realtors (NAR).
Nationwide, the median sale price of a home rose 22.9 per cent to $357,900 compared to 2020, smashing a record in the data set that has been collated since 1968.
The NAR data showed the price of a home is up in 182 out of 183 metro areas from last year. In 94 per cent of those metro areas, median prices rose by more than 10 per cent from a year earlier.
With continuing low interest rates and the likelihood that remote working is here to stay in some form, many people are keen to buy a new home.
However, the inventory of homes for sale has fallen since 2020. But the rush to move spurred by the Covid pandemic has eased in recent months as some buyers have given up or been priced out of the market.
Nevertheless, prices continue to creep up — though not at the pace of earlier in the year, found monthly data from real estate brokerage Redfin. The firm saw a five-month streak of record price increases broken last week.
Redfin’s data for July 2021 lists the following cities as the top 10 metro areas with the fastest-growing home sales price.
1. Meridian, Idaho
Price increase since 2020: 43.6 per cent
Just west of Boise, homes in Meridian, known for being an outdoor-friendly city with lots of open spaces, on average sell for 2.3 per cent over list price after seven days on the market, though figures over six per cent have been seen in particularly hot properties that have sold in just four days. The average sale price now stands at $538,000.
2. Austin, Texas
Price increase since 2020: 38.0 per cent
The tech capital of Texas and home to the SXSW festival, saw house prices increase 37.9 per cent over 2020 with a median price of $600,000. On average, homes in Austin sell after 28 days on the market compared to 12 days last year, but a sought-after property can go for 16 per cent over asking price in just 11 days.
3. Buffalo, New York
Price increase since 2020: 36.4 per cent
In July 2021, Buffalo home prices were up 36.4 per cent compared to last year, selling for a median price of $225,000. Homes in Buffalo sell after 9 days on the market compared to 13 days last year. Astonishingly, a hot property in the city can sell for as much as 20 per cent over asking price in just a week.
4. Spokane, Washington
Price increase since 2020: 34.8 per cent
Homes in Spokane in the eastern part of Washington state have leaped by 34.8 per cent in value since 2020 to an average price of $380,000. While on average a house will be on the market for five days and sell for 5.8 per cent over list price, some property sells in as little as three days at 13 per cent over the asking price.
5. Surprise, Arizona
Price increase since 2020: 34.2 per cent
Cities in Arizona, all centred on Phoenix, take up four of the top ten spots on the list. Surprise home prices were up 34.2 per cent compared to 2020, selling for a median price of $400,000. On average, homes in Surprise sell after 19 days on the market compared to 36 days last year, but sought-after homes can sell in as little as six days for seven per cent over asking.
6. Boise, Idaho
Price increase since 2020: 34.0 per cent
As with its neighbouring municipality at the top of the table just to the west, the property market in Boise is booming. With a median home price of $485,000 after an increase of 34 per cent since 2020, the average property is on the market for just six days, though that can drop to four days for a particularly in-demand house. Buyers will pay 2.5 per cent over list price or six per cent for a hot home.
7. Alpharetta, Georgia
Price increase since 2020: 32.9 per cent
Alpharetta, north of sprawling Atlanta, saw home prices increase by 32.9 per cent year-on-year in July, jumping to $573,000 and staying on the market just 12 days compared to 27 in 2020. That number can drop to six days for the right property. The market is competitive in this, the only city in the southeast to make the top ten, with homes selling on average three per cent over asking price, though some go for seven per cent more.
8. Glendale, Arizona
Price increase since 2020: 31.0 per cent
Northwest of downtown Phoenix, the suburb of Glendale has seen prices rise 31 per cent since 2020 to a median of $380,000. While the average home remains on the market for 19 days and sells at three per cent over asking prices, homes that attract the most interest can sell for eight percent more in only five days.
9. Gilbert, Arizona
Price increase since 2020: 30.6 per cent
On the other side of metropolitan Phoenix, a home in the city of Gilbert has a median sale price of $503,000 after an increase of 30.6 per cent. The average house stays on the market for 17 days, selling at four per cent over the list price. Some particularly in-demand property can sell for as much as nine per cent more in just six days.
10. Mesa, Arizona
Price increase since 2020: 30.2 per cent
Rounding out our tour of sprawling Phoenix — which incidentally just overtook Philadelphia as the nation’s fifth-largest city, according to 2020 census data — is the city of Mesa. Here, home prices were up 30.2 per cent compared to last year, selling for a median price of $398,000. On average, properties sell after 23 days on the market compared to 35 days in 2020, but a hot home can go for seven per cent over asking price in just five days.
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