Home Price Index Up

According to the research firm CoreLogic Inc. (NYSE: CLGX), year-over-year home prices went up for the first three months of tis year by rising 10.5 percent in March compared to the same period one year earlier.

This was the largest monthly increase since March 2006, and came in just slightly higher than a projected 10.2 percent for March, which was equal to the index levels in January and February of this year. The data included sales of distressed properties.

When looking at month-to-month figures, the March price index rose 1.9 percent over February, again this included sales of distressed properties. Eliminating distressed home sales, the price index rose 2.4 percent in in March over February’s numbers. The year-over-year increase for non-distressed sales was 10.7 percent.

CoreLogic states that April housing prices should rise another 9.6% on a year-over-year basis and increase by 1.3% month-over-month from March. Again excluding distressed sales for April, CoreLogic is forecasting a year-over-year increase of 12%, while a month-over-month estimate is forecast to rise by 2.7%.

The company’s CEO stated “Home prices continue to rise at a double-digit rate in March led by strong gains in the western region of the U.S. Looking ahead, the CoreLogic pending index for April indicates that upward price appreciation will continue. Much of the price increases we are seeing are the result of rising demand among investors and homebuyers for a still-limited supply of homes for sale.”

Data from the index, including distressed sales, shows home prices increased the most in Nevada (prices up 22.2%), California (17.2%), Arizona (16.8%) Idaho (114.5%) and Oregon (14.3%). Excluding distressed sales, the biggest gains were posted in Nevada (20.8%), California (16.8%), Idaho (16.3%), Arizona (15.1%) and Hawaii (14.3%).”

According to the index “Among the 100 largest U.S. cities, 88 showed a year-over-year increase in home prices. The largest gains (including distressed properties) came in the Phoenix area (up 18.8%), Los Angeles (16.7%), Riverside, Calif. (14.8%), Atlanta (14.2%) and Houston (7.9%).”