Dallas-area home prices rose at the slowest rate in six years in the latest nationwide housing comparison.
Dallas home prices were 6.4 percent higher than in February 2017 in the monthly Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller Home Price Index.
The Dallas-area gain was just barely ahead of the nationwide average price increase of 6.3 percent in February from a year earlier.
The greatest home price gains were in Seattle (up 12.7 percent), Las Vegas (11.6 percent) and San Francisco (10.1 percent).
"Home prices continue to rise across the country," S&P’s David M. Blitzer said in the report. "Year-over-year prices measured by the national index have increased continuously for the past 70 months, since May 2012.
"Over that time, the price increases averaged 6 percent per year," Blitzer said. "With expectations for continued economic growth and further employment gains, the current run of rising prices is likely to continue."
Dallas-area home price gains have been moderating since last year.
Higher mortgage rates and a larger supply of houses on the market have slowed the appreciation rate in some North Texas neighborhoods.
Still, North Texas median home sales prices are at a record high of about $260,000.
"Increasing employment supports rising home prices both nationally and locally," Blitzer said.
Dallas-area home prices are more than 60 percent higher than they were during the worst of the recession in 2009.
And Dallas prices are almost 45 percent ahead of where they were at the peak of the last housing market in 2007, according to Case-Shiller.
The higher home costs in North Texas have made it tougher for first-time buyers.
"The kind of sustained, rapid home price growth we’ve been seeing in Case-Shiller and other indices for the past few years is enough to give home buyers of all stripes a headache," Zillow Chief Economist Dr. Svenja Gudell said in response to the latest survey. "But that pain is especially acute for first-time and lower-income buyers at the bottom end of the market in search of entry-level homes that are appreciating the fastest, in large part because they are in the most demand.
"Competition is fierce, offer windows are short and tensions will inevitably run high for many buyers as the spring shopping season unfolds," she said. "Even if inventory does begin to recover, it will be rising from incredibly low levels and will likely take years to get back to a more ‘normal’ level."