Key Investment Tools: Inflation Adjusted Prices

15th October, 2015
  • Inflation occurs when there is an increase in price levels over a sustained period, and in terms of economics is measured as an annual percentage increase.

    When there is inflation, the value of the dollar continually decreases, along with its purchasing power. Purchasing power refers to what one can buy with one unit of currency. When there is inflation, something that costs $1.00 in one year may cost $1.02 the next.

    What this means in terms of real estate is that inflation decreases the purchasing power of the dollar in relation to the cost of buying a house or paying to lease a property.

    The inflation-adjusted price of a property refers to the value of a property when it has been adjusted to account for inflation and reflects a present-day value. For example, if the price to purchase a piece of property a decade ago was $100,000, one must adjust for inflation to come up with the inflation-adjusted price of $109,000 in terms of modern day purchasing power.

    Investors must take into account the inflation-adjusted prices of properties and leases to assess their investment prospects. If a property were to lease for $650 10 years ago and now leases for $700, it may seem that there has been a value increase.

    However, when inflation adjusted prices are taken into account, one can see that the actual value of that property as a buy-to-let investment has decreased.

    On the other hand, if it let for $650 a decade ago and now leases for $800 a month, the inflation adjusted price of $710 a decade ago shows that the value of the property has increased.

    The disparity between real values as exemplified above, illustrates why it is so important that you take inflation-adjusted prices into account as an investor.


    by: Prime Asset Investments

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