Keeping pace with other major metropolitan markets, Charlotte home prices rose steadily in December, as potential buyers competed for a limited number of homes, according to a report released Tuesday.
Nationally, the Standard & Poor’s CoreLogic Case-Shiller 20-city home price index, which tracks repeat sales, increased 5.6 percent, the most since January 2016.
Charlotte mirrored the nation, with home prices rising 5.6 percent in December from a year earlier, according to the report.
“Nationally, our inventory is at an historically low point right now,” Roger Parham, president of the Charlotte Regional Realtor Association, which tracks sales of existing homes in the local housing market.
Parham said the Charlotte region is down to a 2.3-month home supply, which “is causing the average price to go up more.” New construction of single-family homes in the Charlotte region will help, Parham said, but “it’s going to take some time.”
Rising home prices in Charlotte and beyond reflect increased demand for homes, as rising consumer confidence and a good job market encourages potential buyers to get off the fence and buy property.
Still, mortgage rates have risen since last fall, and with prices also increasing, homes are becoming less affordable. A measure of pending home sales declined in January, a sign that final sales may soon fall as well.
Several Western cities continued to see the fastest increases nationwide: Prices in Seattle jumped 10.8 percent in December from a year earlier, while they rose 10 percent in Portland and 8.9 percent in Denver.
The Case-Shiller index covers roughly half of U.S. homes. The index measures prices compared with those in January 2000 and creates a three-month moving average. The December figures are the latest available.
The Associated Press contributed.