Editors' pick: Originally published Dec. 5.
Yes, President-Elect Donald Trump may have chosen Ben Carson to lead the Department of Housing and Urban Development, but as the U.S. housing market revs its engines as 2016 draws to a close, an army of homeowners, real estate professionals and economists are focused on cheering on a potentially rosy market in 2017.
And with good reason.
According to the S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller Indices released on November 29, U.S. housing prices rose, on average, by 5.5% from September, 2015 to September, 2016. Some U.S. regions showed double-digit growth for the time period - Seattle, saw an 11.0% year-over-year price increase, followed by Portland, Ore. with 10.9% and Denver with an 8.7% increase, according to the index.
The data point to further growth next year, experts say.
"The new peak set by the S&P Case-Shiller CoreLogic National Index will be seen as marking a shift from the housing recovery to the hoped-for start of a new advance," notes David M. Blitzer, chairman of the index committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices. "While seven of the 20 cities previously reached new post-recession peaks, those that experienced the biggest booms -- Miami, Tampa, Phoenix and Las Vegas -- remain well below their all-time highs. Other housing indicators are also giving positive signals: sales of existing and new homes are rising and housing starts at an annual rate of 1.3 million units are at a post-recession peak."
But there are question marks heading into the new year for the housing market. The surprise election of Donald Trump as president has industry professionals openly wondering how a new Washington regime will impact the real estate sector, one way or another.