Best Home Price Numbers in Yearsby Tim Manni
While the year-over-year numbers continue to remain grim, the pace at which home prices are falling has slowed. According to the Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price Index, the nation’s home prices have actually risen two months in a row ( May and June) and have marked their first quarterly increase in three years. The index, which measures home prices in 20 major U.S. cities, rose 1.4% from May to June and is up 3% from the first quarter.
Past skeptics like real estate analyst Pat Newport seem up on the news. Newport equated the slowing pace of decline from March to April to the busy spring home-buying season. Yet, after several positive reports from different sources, Newport seems ready to cast the home price numbers as more than just a seasonal adjustment:
“This is great news; prices may be starting to grow again” said Pat Newport, a real estate analyst for IHS Global Insight. “Three independent sources, the National Association of Realtors, the Federal Housing Finance Agency and Case Shiller are showing price improvement.”
Despite the positive consistency, home prices have a long way to travel before they even can reach last year’s numbers. According to the Case/Shiller index, home prices are still down 15.4% from the second quarter of 2008.