Home Prices Up 3.7 Percent in FNC Residential Price Index for October

by Houston Agent


FNC's Residential Price Index posted positive yearly gains in October, as strong home sales, and increasing consumer demand bolstered home prices.

By Peter Ricci

Declining foreclosure activity and strengthening home sales contributed positively to home prices in October, with FNC’s latest Residential Price Index increasing 3.7 percent year-over-year for the month.

In addition, the Residential Price Index was up 0.4 percent from September to October – the eighth consecutive month of such increases – and year-to-date, the index has appreciated by 5.1 percent, as rising homeowner expectations continue to drive higher listing prices and smaller listing price discounts.

Residential Price Index Positive in October

Other details that FNC noted in its Residential Price Index report included:

  • Foreclosures as a percentage of total home sales were 17.6 percent in October, which is down from 26.7 percent in January 2012 and 23.5 percent in October 2011.
  • Since turning positive on a year-over-year basis for the first time in July, the Residential Price Index has grown stronger with each successive month, increasing 1.4 percent in August, 2.5 percent in September and 3.7 percent in October.
  • Here in Houston, the Residential Price Index increased 0.1 percent on a monthly basis in October, and home prices 4.8 percent year-to-date; year-over-year, home prices were even stronger, rising by 5.8 percent.
  • Interestingly, the latest information from the Houston Association of Realtors was even better than what FNC found, with home prices in Houston rising 8.7 percent year-over-year to the city’s best October in its history. The latest data from HAR, which should come out this week, will have information about November.

Good Sign for Home Prices in 2013?

The increasingly strong yearly gains for the Residential Price Index, as Bill McBride noted on his Calculated Risk blog, mean good things for housing prices, and they have many looking forward to 2013.

The Wall Street Journal recently reported that analysts at J.P. Morgan Chase has dramatically revised upward their 2013 expectations of home prices. Previously, the bank’s researchers expected home prices to rise at least 1.5 percent in 2013, but now that demand for homes is at its highest level since 2006, the bank is confidently upgrading its predictions.

By how much? Now, J.P. Morgan expects home prices to increase at least 3.4 percent – and, in its most bullish prediction, by an impressive 9.7 percent. And as the Journal points out, it’s certainly not alone; Standard & Poor’s, which releases the epochal Case-Shiller Home Price Indices every month, is expecting a 5 percent increase in 2013.

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