Two reports released Tuesday, one local and one national, appear to confirm that housing values are improving in the Phoenix market. Arizona State University’s Repeat Sales Index shows that although prices are lower than one year ago, the declines are not as severe as they have been.
For instance, the index shows prices dropped 9 percent from January 2009 to January 2010. That compares with a 13 percent year-over-year price drop in December 2009 and a 17 percent year-over-year price drop in November 2009.
“The March figures also show the first monthly increase in the median price of non-foreclosure homes since the end of 2007,” said ASU Professor Karl Guntermann, who is the Fred E. Taylor Professor of Real Estate. “This may signal the start of price stability throughout much of the housing market.”
The median price for single-family homes sold in January was $125,000. That compares with May 2009 when the median price slipped to $115,000, the lowest recorded during the recession.
The S&P/Case Shiller Home Price Indices also indicate that housing value declines are beginning to slow in Phoenix with a one-year composite decline hovering at 1.6 percent. That was one of the smallest declines among 20 metropolitan areas surveyed.
The largest housing value decline from February 2009 to February 2010 was 14.6 percent in Las Vegas, although Las Vegas has seen a small improvement in recent monthly returns. Other markets where prices reached new lows were Charlotte, N.C.; New York; Portland, Ore.; Seattle; and Tampa, Fla.
The only market to record price increases from January to February of this year was San Diego. Case Shiller shows Phoenix as recording a 1.5 percent composite decline from January to February and a 0.6 percent decline from December 2009 to January 2010.
Analysts at Case Shiller said all homes sales, housing starts and inventories showed “tremendous improvement” in March, as well.
The ASU Repeat Sales index indicates, however, that condo and townhouse sales are still suffering with an average price drop of 28 percent from January 2009 to January 2010. The median price was $80,000 in January but that number is expected to rise to $83,500 when the final numbers are tabulated for March of this year.
ASU recently began tabulating the repeat sales index for commercial properties. The news there isn’t good.
“At the end of 2009 commercial prices were declining at an annual rate of 40 percent,” the report stated.
The ASU-RSI is based on repeat sales, which compare the prices of a single house or now a commercial property against itself at different points in time, instead of comparing different homes with different quality factors.
Phoenix Business Journal