Stronger than ever, the U.S. housing market was full-speed ahead going into what was forecasted to be a spring buying bonanza. Home-sale prices increased 6.6 percent year-over-year according to Redfin, construction was up, and low interest rates were poised to entice new homebuyers into the housing market. But then the coronavirus hit the United States, and American life changed in the span of weeks. The housing market slowdown is especially hard for the industry because before this, builders were feeling confident as the market finally picked up after a rocky decade post-Great Recession. But experts at Redfin say that looking back at the start of 2020 might remind the industry where the housing market may return to once the pandemic passes.
During the month prior to the U.S. coronavirus crisis, U.S. home-sale prices increased 6.6% year over year. In February, the nationwide home price median rose to $293,700 and home prices were up 2.8% month over month on a seasonally-adjusted basis. While the U.S. economy and housing market is currently in great flux as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s important to look back at the February data to see how robust the market was heading into this crisis and to understand what we might return to when things—eventually—get back to “normal.”
Please note: In order to more accurately represent the national housing market trends and remove potential bias in the data due to Redfin’s market coverage, we made some changes to how we weight different regions and which counties we use as a representative sample for our national housing data methodology that is being rolled out with this report. The tables and historical charts in this post all reflect this new methodology and are therefore not comparable to our previous Market Tracker reports. You can read more details about our methodology change in this post.