Gains in homeowner equity slowed to their lowest level in two years, according to a new report, providing just the latest evidence of a cooling home real estate market.
The average mortgage payer’s equity grew $12,400 in the third quarter compared to the same period last year, according to CoreLogic’s latest Home Equity Report. That increase is the smallest equity that homeowners have seen in two years.
In the second quarter, for example, equity gains were $16,000, or 30% more. CoreLogic’s research also found that the annual equity gain decreased from 6.2% in June to 5.4% in September.
“On average, homeowners saw their home equity increase again this quarter but not nearly as much as in previous quarters,” CoreLogic chief economist Frank Nothaft said in a release. “This lower year-over-year gain reflects the slowing in appreciation we’ve seen in the CoreLogic Home Price Index.”
Homeowner equity gained in every state in the third quarter, according to CoreLogic. Western states experienced the highest gains with an average of $36,500 in California and $32,600 in Nevada.
Although home prices have increased since 2012, experts have been anticipating a slowdown, if not eventual declines, writes Forbes. This has had a ripple effect on many sectors.
Just last month, shares in online real estate Zillow plunged 20% amid investor concern about its prospects in a cooling market. Furthermore, tax changes mean that there is a more limited tax incentive to buy a home, while housing prices have increased at twice the speed of income and inflation.