Western States Lead Rebound in Home Prices

Illustration of a house made of hundred-dollar billsStrong price growth in California and other Western states helped the U.S. see its biggest year-over-year jump in home prices in almost seven years.

U.S. home prices in February rose 10.2 percent from a year earlier, the research firm CoreLogic said. It was the 12th straight month of steadily rising prices — up 0.5 percent from January.

“The rebound in prices is heavily driven by Western states,” Mark Fleming, CoreLogic’s chief economist, said in a statement. “Eight of the top ten highest appreciating large markets are in California, with Phoenix and Las Vegas rounding out the list.”

CoreLogic estimated March home prices also rose more than 10 percent, although final numbers have not yet been calculated.

The increase in home prices underscores “the ongoing strengthening of market fundamentals,” CoreLogic CEO Anand Nallathambi said. “Continued home price appreciation will provide fuel needed to drive further recovery in the home purchase market.”

February’s rise in prices put U.S. home values 26.3 percent below their April 2006 peak, before the housing meltdown, CoreLogic said.

Other highlights from the CoreLogic report:

  • The five states with the highest home-price appreciation in February were: Nevada (up 19.3 percent), Arizona (18.6 percent), California (15.3 percent), Hawaii (14.6 percent), and Idaho (13.5 percent).
  • Three states posted home price depreciation: Delaware (down 4.4 percent), Alabama (1.5 percent), and Illinois (1 percent).

(Illustration courtesy of 401(K) 2013, via Flickr.)

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