Property appreciation is slowing in housing markets across the U.S., inching toward a buyer’s market, according to the latest national index produced by Florida International University’s College of Business (FIU Business) and Florida Atlantic University faculty.
The Beracha, Hardin & Johnson Buy vs. Rent (BH&J) Index reveals that during the third quarter of this year, upward pressure on the demand for homeownership declined in 20 of the 23 metropolitan markets tracked in the BH&J Index.
“Looking back over the past few quarters, property price appreciation is decelerating, which suggests that the rapid property appreciation witnessed in recent quarters is almost certainly over,” said Eli Beracha, director of the Hollo School of Real Estate at FIU Business and co-creator of the index.
The report found that there are only three cities – Atlanta, Chicago and Detroit – where the index didn’t go down in the last quarter. In the remaining 20 metropolitan markets tracked in the BH&J Index, upward pressure on the demand for homeownership is declining.
“Home prices have historically been cyclical around a long-term trend,” Beracha said. “This time around should be no different and this cycle should not be as extreme as the previous housing cycle.”
What will happen next in the U.S. housing markets? That’s still an open question.
According to Ken H. Johnson, a real estate economist, co-creator of the index and FAU professor, the most likely scenario is that “we will see slightly positive to slightly negative property appreciation rates this time around as the nation’s housing markets revert to their long-term means.”
Johnson and Beracha agree that a likely scenario is a “bumpy” ride back to a long-term property pricing trend.
“This occurred prior to the housing crash a decade ago as well; however, current macro market factors, high employment and low mortgage rates, among others, should serve to buoy prices,” Johnson said. “There is a low probability that we will experience a catastrophic housing crash.”
Published quarterly, the Beracha, Hardin & Johnson Buy vs. Rent (BH&J) Index is produced by Beracha, Johnson and William Hardin, a professor at the FIU Business Hollo School of Real Estate.
The comparison between buying and renting considers many factors including, but not limited to, rent-to-price ratio, mortgage rates, expected rate of inflation, real past stock market long term returns, long term rent growth and housing price appreciation, costs associated with maintenance and property taxes, homeownership tax benefits, transaction costs and average homeowners’ duration between relocations.
The BH&J Index is available at http://business.fau.edu/buyvsrent. Due to data availability and the time necessary to calculate the most current index values, the index is produced two months after the end of each quarter.