It was a good time to be a homeowner in the first quarter of this year. Home sellers nationwide saw home price gains average $67,100 on a typical sale, up from $59,000 a year prior, according to a report released Thursday from ATTOM Data Solutions, a real estate research firm.
The $67,100 home seller profit represented an average of a 33.7% return on investment compared to the original purchase price, the report shows.
The median price for single-family homes and condos increased to a new high in the first quarter of $265,900, up 11.3% from a year prior. ATTOM Data Solutions reports the annual increase was the largest since the third quarter of 2013.
“The national housing market continued at full throttle in the first quarter of 2020, setting new price and profit records as it entered its ninth straight year of gains,” Todd Teta, chief product officer at ATTOM Data Solutions, says. “After it looked like things were settling down last year, the market has again roared ahead, with significant increases.”
Teta did acknowledge that the momentum is likely to reverse due to the economic slowdown caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. “Millions of Americans are newly unemployed, and most people are practicing social distancing, which could bring things to a halt just as the spring buying season begins,” he notes. “Despite that cloud, the numbers for Q1 still do remain upbeat.”
The National Association of REALTORS® reported Wednesday that contract signings on home sales dropped 20.8% in March compared to February as the housing market grappled with the coronavirus-induced shutdown. But NAR believes the market slowdown is temporary. “As consumers become more accustomed to social distancing protocols and with the economy slowly and safely reopening, listings and buying activity will resume, especially given the record low mortgage rates,” Yun says. Read more from NAR’s latest pending home sales report.
First Quarter Sales Winners
Among the 108 metro areas tracked by ATTOM Data Solutions, western states saw the highest returns on investment at the point of sale. The metro areas with the highest home seller ROIs in the first quarter were San Jose, Calif. (81.8%); San Francisco (67.7%); Seattle (63.6%); Spokane, Wash. (61.8%); and Boise, Idaho (59.1%).
Meanwhile, the metros that saw the largest annual increases in the first quarter on median home prices were: Boise, Idaho (up 21.9%); Milwaukee (up 19.1%); Panama City, Fla. (up 18.4%); Salisbury, Md. (up 15.4%); and New Orleans (up 13.9%).