Home prices in the Portland area, already at record levels, pushed higher in January.
Prices climbed 0.1 percent during what is usually a seasonally slow month, according to the S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller home price index, reaching a level 9.7 percent higher than a year earlier.
That’s second only to Seattle’s 11.3 percent increase, year over year, in the 20-city index.
The median home price in Portland was $350,000 in January, according to the Regional Multiple Listing Service. It climbed to $353,400 in February.
The limited supply of homes on the market has helped push prices higher. In Portland, the end of February saw just 3,109 homes on the market, according to RMLS.
Prices are rising fastest among the lowest-priced homes, where first-time homebuyers and investors are competing for deals, but middle- and high-priced homes are seeing similar increases.
Climbing prices continue to take a toll on affordability. Mortgage rates have stayed relatively low, helping would-be homeowners maintain their buying power.
Future increases, however, could put a damper on homebuying, said David M. Blitzer, chairman of the index committee.
“At some point, this process will force prices to level off and decline,” he said in a statement. “However, we don’t appear to be there yet.”
Despite the eye-popping annual increases, there are signs that Portland-area home prices are losing steam.
For six months, monthly home-price growth on a percentage basis has hovered near the national average.
— Elliot Njus