The House Price Index (HPI) measures the evolution of market prices of all residential properties that are purchased by households (flats, detached houses, terraced houses, etc.), both new and existing, independently if bought for own-occupancy or as an investment.
According to preliminary estimates, in the first quarter of 2021 the HPI (see Italian IPAB) increased by 1.1% compared with the previous quarter and by 1.7% compared with the same quarter of the previous year (it was +1.5% in the fourth quarter of 2020).
The increase on annual basis of HPI was due to both the prices of new dwellings which grew by 3.9% (a clear speed-up compared to the previous quarter when it was +1.8%) and to prices of existing dwellings that rose by 1.2% (a slight slowdown compared to +1.3% registered in the fourth quarter of 2020).
The increase of HPI occured in the context of sharp increase of the volumes of sales (it was +38.6% the annual rate of change registered for the residential sector in the first quarter of 2021 by the Observatory of Real Estate Market belonging to Tax Office), which actually was affected by the strong decrease of the number of transactions recorded in the same quarter of the last year for the restrictions due to the pandemic in force since March 2020.
Also the increase on quarterly basis of the HPI was due both to the prices of new dwellings that rose by 0.9% and to those of existing dwellings which increased by 1.1%.
With the release of HPI for the first quarter of 2021, corresponding weights, as usual, are updated and disseminated. In particular, the weight of new dwellings amounts to 16.7% (it was about 35% in 2010) against 83.3% (it was about 65% in 2010) of the existing ones (for both the same as in the previous year).