Why it’s so hard to forecast home prices for 2018 — and why that should worry you

The housing market has not recovered and remains riddled with dysfunction

By Andrea Riquier | MarketWatch

What will 2018 bring for housing?

If the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over while expecting different results, it’s probably fair to call those who offer professional forecasts on the housing market a bit nuts.

One of the hallmarks of the past few years has been home prices that throttle well past forecasts, even as forecasters declare repeatedly that it can’t continue. Such strong price growth — and the inability of analysts to keep up — raises issues about the housing market that go beyond the question “Are we in a bubble?”

Last September, when MarketWatch wrote about monthly price gains that left forecasts in the dust, the annual price gain, according to data provider CoreLogic, was 5% for 2017. Now it’s 7%.

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