According to the Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight (OFHEO), Salt Lake City ranked fourth in the country for appreciation last year with home prices rising 19.8%. Following only Bend, Oregon (21.4%), Wenatchee, Washington, and Salt Lake’s southern neighbor, Provo-Orem (19.9%).
The Salt Lake Tribune published an article today about the rising home prices, stating, “Utah’s home price appreciation, the worst in the country just three years ago, is now the best nationwide.”
Nationally, home prices rose 5.9% during that time period, while all of Utah’s major metropolitan areas posted major gains in the past year. And it’s not only sales prices that have been strong, but time on market has been great, with well-priced homes moving fairly quickly, and over-priced homes not selling. This tells me that the market is not inflating itself, but is being driven by healthy factors, such as jobs and demand.
Also from the article;
Much of Utah’s current real estate boom has to do with the state’s strong job market, said Andrew Leventis, economist with Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight. Job growth in the state, among the highest nationally, is expected to continue strong through this year and next. “Employment and house prices are closely linked,” Leventis said. Another factor in Utah’s favor is affordability. Utahns struggling to afford a home may think otherwise, but Utah still has “fairly affordable housing,” Leventis said.
The Salt Lake real estate market should remain strong for the next few years with the continued job and population growth and the influx of buyers from out of state. One reason I feel good about the growth in the northern Utah market is the fact that the appreciation rate is under 20%, meaning it is not rising too much too fast, which would make it unsustainable. This year the local market should appreciate 10-12% and that is about as good as it gets.