Homeowner value perceptions improve as prices rise

While the typical homeowner continued to overestimate the value of their property, their perception of how much their residence was worth improved in June.

According to the latest National Home Price Perceptions Index from the retail mortgage lender Quicken Loans, the average appraisal in June was 0.71 percent lower than a homeowner's expectation. This marked the second straight month of improving perceptions after six consecutive months where the gap between the appraised value and expected value widened.

The average appraisal fell 0.79 percent short of expectations in May. The gap between the two values was just 0.25 percent in June 2018.

"The refinance share of mortgage activity is at its highest rate since January of 2018, and it appears that homeowners have done their due diligence on their home's value as millions across the country refinance their home loans," said Bill Banfield, executive vice president of capital markets at Quicken Loans. "This decline in the discrepancy between perceived and appraised value should encourage homeowners who are contemplating a refinance, knowing that appraisals are not likely to disrupt the process when they take advantage of low rates."

The average appraisal was 0.69 percent lower than expected values in both the West and Midwest. It fell 0.72 percent shower in the South and 0.75 percent short in the Northeast.

Quicken Loans also looks at value perceptions in 27 major metropolitan areas across the United States. The average appraisal was equal to expectations in Washington, D.C., higher than expected in 10 cities, and lower than expected in 16 cities.

Appraisals were most likely to be higher than expected in Charlotte, N.C., where the average appraised value was 2.01 percent higher than the homeowner's estimate. The typical appraisal was 1.26 percent higher in Boston and 1.14 percent higher in Minneapolis. The average appraisal was 1.69 percent lower than expected in Philadelphia, 1.52 percent lower in Chicago, and 1.39 percent lower in Cleveland.

Quicken Loans also issues a monthly update of its Home Value Index, where a figure of 100 equals home values in January 2005. The index stood at 113.34 in June, up 0.56 percent from the previous month and 4.78 percent from the previous year.

The Home Value Index for the Northeast region rose 1 percent from May and 4.46 percent from June 2018 to 104.85. The West had the strongest value growth, with the region's index seeing a 1.87 percent increase from the previous month and year-over-year growth of 5.2 percent.

In the South, the index dropped 0.16 percent to 114.48; however, this was still an annual increase of 3.83 percent. The Midwest's index stood at 93.95, a drop of 0.23 percent from the previous month but an increase of 3.29 percent from the previous year.

Quicken Loans bases its Home Price Perceptions Index on a national database of refinance mortgage data. In a refinance mortgage, the homeowner estimates the value of their property and an appraiser later determines a value. The Home Value Index is based on a database of both purchase and refinance mortgages.

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