Clear Capital has released its February monthly Home Data Index (HDI) Market Report, and reports positive indicators for home prices in 2011.
Major markets in the U.S. are showing early signs of coming out of winter hibernation. Thirteen of the highest performing markets posted positive quarterly gains. Four MSAs posted large quarterly gains as compared to last month’s report, with Houston showing a 6.8 percent increase. Cleveland and Dayton, Ohio; along with Chicago also experienced impressive quarterly percentage point improvements; with gains of 12.6, 9.6 and 6.3, respectively.
“This recent national change in price direction is encouraging for the overall housing sector, yet it is still too early to determine whether this is a temporary reprieve or the start of a sustained recovery,” says Dr. Alex Villacorta, senior statistician at Clear Capital. “This uptick is the first non-incentivized change in prices we’ve seen since the downturn began, and could provide great opportunity for buyers, sellers and investors alike. Although many markets still remain under significant downward pressure in light of increased distressed sale activities, it is clear that the severity of the downturns observed in October and November have subsided.”
National home price declines reversed their downward trend this month, with the current rolling quarter-over-quarter declines (-1.6 percent price change) leveling off near zero. All regions except the West experienced flattening quarterly price changes. The South and the Northeast posted effectively unchanged quarterly price movements, while the Midwest quarterly price changes have improved 8.0 percentage points since the Dec. 9, 2010 report.
The year-over-year national decline continued downward, but only marginally, with the yearly price change reaching -4.3 percent through January, down from the -4.1 percent reported last month.