Big Jump in Home Values in the Past Year

by Courtney Wehmeier


Due to tremendous buyer demand for homes and limited inventory, home values have significantly increased. According to the Federal Housing Finance Agency, FHFA, the rate of appreciation in the MSA’s we serve increased over the past 5 years between 18.76% – 22.6%, as shown in the the chart below.


Even more impressive is the increase in the prior 12 months which ranges from 5.99% in Iowa City to 9.08% in Cedar Rapids. FHFA data always runs a quarter behind, so this increase was only through June of 2021. Based on extremely strong 3rd quarter sales, we anticipate values will continue to appreciate, albeit at a slower pace, through the end of this year and likely through 2022.


This increase in home values makes now a great time for sellers to sell. It’s also a good time to unlock the equity in a home with a cash out refinance that can be used for many purposes such as home improvements, buying an investment property, paying off debt, etc.


“During the second quarter, home prices nationally peaked in June with an 18.8% growth rate compared to a year ago”,said Dr. Lynn Fischer, Deputy Director of FHFA’s Division of Research and Statistics. The continuing appreciation in home prices and likely increase in mortgage rates will make now the best time to buy a new home before monthly payments increase.


Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs)

Percent Change in House Prices

1 Year

5 Year

Cedar Rapids, IA

+ 9.08%

+ 22.60%

Davenport-Moline-Rock Island, IA-IL

+ 7.37%

+ 18.76%

Des Moines-West Des Moines, IA

+ 8.59%

+ 25.17%

Dubuque, IA

+ 6.72%

+ 19.70%

Iowa City, IA

+ 5.99%

+ 18.82%


+ 17.42%

+ 47.66%

Information courtesy of the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) for the second quarter of 2021. FHFA stats always run one quarter behind. Their full report is available at


“We have continued to experience sizable gains across our region in home values over the last year,” said Caroline Ruhl, CEO, Ruhl&Ruhl Realtors. “To get a real sense of your local neighborhood real estate market, we suggest you meet with a Ruhl&Ruhl Realtor who can give you a summary of activity in your neighborhood.”

About Ruhl&Ruhl Realtors
A family-owned company since 1862, Ruhl&Ruhl Realtors has grown to 330 sales associates, 57 employees and 12 offices, selling more than 5,200 units in 2020 in eastern Iowa, northwest Illinois, and southwest Wisconsin. The company has residential sales offices in Bettendorf, Burlington, Cedar Rapids, Clinton, Davenport, DeWitt, Dubuque, Iowa City, and Muscatine, Iowa; and in Galena and Moline, Illinois. For more information on Ruhl&Ruhl Realtors, visit their website at

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