Prices of existing single family homes, as measured by the S&P / Case-Shiller National Home Price index, are rising in single digit terms. However, the price changes that matter – the real or inflation adjusted changes – may be higher than many suspect. Backing out inflation gives real increases averging 6.3% annually in 2012-2015. This compares to real increases of 6.8% annually during 1998-2005, the peak years of the housing boom. With two percent wage increases and one percent inflation, a real increase of 6% or more can make a difference. These numbers may offer one explanation for the recent popularity of apartments and renting.