February home prices see the biggest gain in 15 years, S&P Case-Shiller says Diana Olick…
It pays to be a homeowner
Home price growth might be slowing, but homeowners are still gaining serious equity in their properties, According to new data, the average homeowner saw their home equity jump by $9,700 last year.
Earning that equity
According to the latest Home Equity Report from CoreLogic, the average homeowner saw an 8.1 percent increase in home equity between Q4 2017 and Q4 2018 — or about $9,700.
In total, Americans gained nearly $680 billion in equity over the last year. This rising equity — combined with moderating mortgage rates — presents homeowners with key opportunities, according to Frank Martell, CoreLogic’s CEO and president.
“As home prices rise, significantly more people are choosing to remodel, repair or upgrade their existing homes,” Martell said. “The increase in home equity over the past several years provides homeowners with the means to finance home remodels and repairs. With rates still ultra-low by historical standards, home-equity loans provide a low-cost method to finance home-improvement spending. These expenditures are expected to rise 5 percent in 2019.”
Where equity is up the most
Western homeowners are particularly flush with equity. According to the report, homeowners in Nevada saw their equity jump more than $29,000 in the last year, while those in Hawaii experienced an increase of $26,900.
Idaho homeowners came in third, with equity jumping $24,700 since Q4 2017, and homeowners in California took fourth. They saw equity increase by $19,600. The only states to see a decline in equity were North Dakota (-$10,000), Louisiana (-$3,000) and Connecticut (-$400).
At the metro level, Miami has seen the biggest jump in home equity, rising 10.4 percent since last year. Homeowners in Chicago, Washington D.C., New York and Las Vegas also experienced equity jumps of 4 percent or more since 2017.