Definition of "Correlation"

Karol Flannery real estate agent

Written by

Karol Flanneryelite badge icon

Bentley's Real Estate

A correlation defines how two variables relate to one another. We can confirm a correlation if an alteration in one variable can change the other’s behavior. Using quantifiable data is essential when we establish a state of correlation. Therefore, we can draw conclusions and predictions based on the relationship between these variables. 

Local real estate agents can offer you valuable assistance! With them, you can determine whether there is a correlation between property prices and the region’s economy in which you wish to purchase a home!

Positive vs. negative correlation

We can measure the degree of correlation mathematically by the coefficient of determination (r-squared). More precisely, the correlation coefficient defines a relation and precision between estimated and existing values in an experiment. The correlation between variables can vary between +1 to - 1. Under such circumstances, we can establish positive and negative correlations. 

The two variables change immediately and in the same direction, following the same pattern in a positive correlation. The perfect positive correlation is +1. For instance, the more capital a company spends on ads, the more products its clients will buy from them.

A negative or inverse correlation means two variables changing in opposite directions. Additionally, the perfect negative correlation is -1. Note, however, that correlation does not suggest causality or causation! Moreover, zero (‘0’) does not indicate any correlation between variables. Statistics prove an inverse correlation between stock prices and the bond market. Once more people invest in bonds triggering a rising bond market, stock investments will perform less than expected. The same observation applies vice-versa.

What does correlation mean in real estate?

The definition of correlation in real estate describes the relationship between two or more variables or factors affecting the housing market and activities within, such as transactions. A variable can be a changing interest rate, liquidity risk, and money supply. 

Is there a long- or short-term correlation between residential or commercial real estate prices and rates and inflation? 

Cross-asset correlation

A cross-asset correlation signals a positive relationship between growing residential property income with returns on commercial real estate in time. However, there isn’t any or only an insignificant correlation to home equity loans. Analytics believe correlations won’t be durable between asset classes.

Residential properties and rates

In contrast to equities and bonds, real estate prices prove a more substantial correlation to GDP increase and rising employment rates. A correlation doesn’t apply to interest rates significantly because home values are typically pro-cyclical. However, mortgage and interest rates can sometimes establish a positive yet narrow relationship with home price appreciation. 

Inflation in correlation with real estate

Undoubtedly, we can confirm a distinctly positive correlation between property values and inflation. Even more so, this correlation is valid to long-lasting periods of several years. However, investors in rental housing should not be concerned because they can likely enjoy hedging advantages during an inflation growth. 

Diversification in uncorrelated investments

You can own valuables, assets, real estate uncorrelated to one another by expanding your investment portfolio. Thus, you can reduce the risks associated with the value loss of one particular asset.

image of a real estate dictionary page

Have a question or comment?

We're here to help.

*** Your email address will remain confidential.


Popular Real Estate Terms

Hollow building block whose dimensions are 8 x 8 x 16. Concrete blocks are widely used in the construction of foundations and outer walls. They provide strength and durability. ...

An assurance a loan's financial obligation will be secured by a third party. ...

Law enacted by a local authority applicable to the action of people or things. An example is a fine of $5,000 for littering vacant real estate. ...

I am the person. The person himself/herself. The actual person. ...

Personal income minus personal income tax payments and other government deductions. It is the personal income available for people to spend or save; also called take-home pay. It may be a ...

Business entity providing water services in a particular locality. ...

See historic structure. ...

Created by the US Congress in 1965, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is the agency principally responsible for federal programs relating to housing and urban ...

Property owned and held jointly and equally shared by each spouse. It is purchased during their marriage, regardless of the wage-earning situation of either spouse. A spouse may not make a ...

Popular Real Estate Questions