Phoenix Business Journal by Kristena Hansen, Reporter
Date: Tuesday, October 2, 2012, 12:06pm
Even during what is usually a summer slowdown, the lively rally of Arizona’s housing market continues as the state ranked No. 1 in the nation for gains in home prices, according to the latest data released Tuesday by CoreLogic.
Arizona home prices in August, including foreclosures and short sales, surged 18.2 percent compared with the same month last year, the report said.
Metro Phoenix home prices, also including distressed sales, took an even bigger jump in August — up 21.8 percent from a year earlier. Prices were also up 1.4 percent from July to August.
The year-over-year gains in Arizona and the Phoenix area were by far the largest of any state or metropolitan area. It’s also a testament to the trends that have historically occurred in Arizona: Whatever the housing market is doing elsewhere in the nation is almost always exaggerated here.
For example, Idaho trailed far behind Arizona in second place with a 10.4 percent year-over-year gain, which was followed by Nevada’s 9 percent improvement during the same time frame.
The difference between the Phoenix market versus other metro areas was even more staggering in August.
While Valley home prices surged 22 percent, Houston’s second-place ranking — 6.3 percent — wasn’t even close. Washington, Dallas and Los Angeles then followed closely behind one another with year-over-year gains of 4.8 percent, 4.3 percent and 4 percent, respectively, according to the report.
Nationwide, August home prices posted a 4.6 percent rise from a year earlier. That’s the biggest year-over-year increase since June 2006 and the sixth consecutive month of national price gains, the report said.
Only six states — Alabama, Connecticut, Illinois, Kentucky, New Jersey and Rhode Island — saw prices drop from last year.
“Sustained economic recovery in the U.S. requires a healthy housing market. You cannot have a healthy housing market without price stabilization and ultimately home price appreciation,” Anand Nallathambi, president and CEO ofCoreLogic, said in the report. “Improving pricing trends over the past few months and our forecast for continued gains in September bode well for a progressive rebound in the residential housing market.”
The CoreLogic Pending Housing Price Index indicates that September home prices will likely fare better than last year, but the consistent upward trend in recent months may begin to taper.
CoreLogic analysts predict that September home prices will decline for the first time in six months — down slightly by 3 percent from August. However, a 5 percent gain from a year earlier is predicted.