Salt Lake is 12th highest metro for 10-year housing wealth

June 9, 2022

Over the past 10 years, a typical Salt Lake homeowner has gained more than $421,000 in housing wealth through a combination of home price increases and paying down their mortgage.

That’s the 12th highest gain in the country with $388,500 of the increase from just price appreciation alone.

The findings are from a new report from the National Association of Realtors that studied housing wealth by metro area over periods of five, 10 and 30 years.

Nationally, a homeowner who purchased a single-family home 10 years ago would have gained $240,200 in home equity — with $209,400 due solely to price appreciation.

 The most significant gains occurred in the West region, which had 15 of the top 20 metro areas. San Jose topped the list with $1.4 million in home equity gains, and California had seven of the top 10 metros.

The calculations are based on median sales price data of existing single-family homes along with principal repayment based on a 30-year loan with a 10% down payment.

“The equity gains will depend on the home’s characteristics but over a 5- or 10-year period, the characteristics of a typical home will likely not have changed much, so the change in the median sales price is still a good indicator of the typical equity gains due to price appreciation,” wrote Scholastica (Gay) Cororaton, research economist with the National Association of Realtors. “However, talk to a Realtor when buying or selling a home who can assist with giving you the best offer or list price on your home.”

Five, 10 and 30-year gains in Salt Lake

The long-term value of homeownership is demonstrated by the housing wealth gains over time — although the rate of change depends on the year.

The study showed that the most significant increases in home equity have occurred over the past five years due to soaring home prices.

For example, a typical Salt Lake homeowner who purchased a home five years ago gained $296,100 in home equity with $272,100 of that equity the result of higher prices. That’s an annual gain of 14.4% over the five-year period.

Wealth gains were also strong over a 10-year period with annual appreciation of 12.7%. Salt Lake homeowners gained $421,300 because of price increases and mortgage payments.

Annual growth was not as high for the 30-year period but was still strong at 7%. Salt Lake homeowners gained $550,800 in housing wealth during that time with $483,700 from price increases and $67,100 from principal payments.

“Homeownership is the largest source of wealth among families, with the median value of the primary residence worth about ten times the median value of financial assets held by families,” Cororaton wrote.


With the recent rise in mortgage rates, some are concerned the more expensive borrowing costs will soften demand and cause prices to fall. However, the National Association of Realtors predicts prices will continue to rise because of the housing shortage but at a slower pace. The organization expects U.S. price appreciation of 10% for 2022 and 5% in 2023.

“However, even if home prices were to fall, it will take a massive dip in prices to wipe out home equity gains,” Cororaton wrote.

For example, as of first quarter 2022, Salt Lake homeowners had built up $421,300 in the last 10 years through price appreciation and by paying down debt. In fact, that wealth gain is 2.5 times the median single-family price of $168,400 paid is 2012.

“So even if home prices were to fall and sellers had to sell their homes, they will likely still not have to sell at a loss relative to the price at which they bought the home but will experience smaller gains,” Cororaton wrote.

To learn more about housing trends in your neighborhood, contact a local Realtor.