From RealTrends.com: U.S. home prices rose slightly in July, signaling a stabilizing market, the federal government said recently. But another private home pricing index tells a tale of two Americas-one in housing recovery, and the other still in trouble, according to an article on DSNews.com. The Federal Housing Finance Agency said last week that prices rose 0.3% in July from the prior month-an estimate made possible when June’s numbers were cut from a .5 to a .1% increase.
That means the FHFA’s numbers are about 10.5% off from their April 2007 peak – a considerably smaller overall decline than other indexes, since FHFA figures don’t include many expensive homes that were secured with exotic subprimes or jumbo mortgages. The index’s rise “supports other evidence that the three-year long decline in prices has come to halt,” Paul Dales, an economist with Capital Economics, wrote in a note to clients, before warning that “rising foreclosures and the fragile economic environment suggest that further gains in prices will be modest and patchy.”
The report said that the most year-to-year sales growth occurred in seven of the markets worst hit by the recession: They were Phoenix, Miami, Las Vegas, San Diego, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Tampa. In those regions, home sales jumped nearly 30 percent since early 2008, on an average price drop of 21 percent in that time. By contrast, the other 13 metro areas in the index actually saw sales plummet by 22 percent on average, with slightly lower price falls of 12 to 13 percent.
Source: DSNews.com, Adam Weinstein (09/22/2009)