The national median home value has reached $200,400, a 7.5 percent increase from last year. Zillow attributed this new peak to a higher buyer demand and a shrinking housing inventory. In some markets, year-over-year gains have been in double-digit figures: Seattle’s home values are up 13 percent year-over-year to a median home value of $447,100, while home values in Dallas and Las Vegas are up 10.5 and 10 percent, respectively.
"The national housing market remains red hot and shows no signs of slowing, even as some local markets like the Bay Area have noticeably cooled," said Zillow Chief Economist Svenja Gudell. "But even in areas where the housing market has slowed, home values are at or very near peak levels, selection is limited, demand is high and competition is fierce. Given these high costs and high competition, the most important thing you can do is get your finances in order so you know what you can comfortably afford, and find an agent who has experience with bidding wars and will help you stand out in a competitive market, especially if you're buying for the first time."
While home values balloon, median rent across the nation has been holding steady at about a one percent annual gain for the past six months. Today’s nationwide median rent is $1,422 per month. Once again, Seattle takes a leadership position as the priciest housing market, with rents up five percent to an average of $2,142 per month. But median rent is falling in 12 of the 35 largest metros, most notably Pittsburgh (down four percent) and Houston (down three percent).