Tuesday, May 22, 2012

NAR: Median home prices in region at highest level since May 2010

The median home price in the West region of the U.S., which includes Colorado, rose 15.9 percent from April 2011 to April 2012,rising to the highest median price recorded since May 2010. According to new existing home sales data, released today by the National Association of Realtors, the median home price rose nationally and in all regions, with the West posting the largest year-over-year increase of all regions. 

The first graph shows median home prices for all regions plus the U.S. The median home price in the West rose to $221,700. Nationally, the median home price rose to $177,400. In the West, the median price has increased 3 months in a row, reflecting seasonal factors, but is also showing more price gains than has been the gains over the past two years.

Nationally, home prices rose 10.1 percent, year over year.

According to today's report, home sales transactions (closings, not seasonally adjusted) rose 1.0 percent, from April 2011 to April 2012, in the West region while nationally, sales rose 6.7 percent during the same period. All regions reported year-over-year increases in sales activity. The largest increase was reported in the Northeast where sales rose 15.6 percent.

The second graph shows closings by region. All regions showed a month-over-month increase from March to April, which is common due to seasonality. Sales rose nationally 11.1 percent from March to April, while sales in the West rose 9.5 percent.

Overall, April's sales activity was higher than was the case during April of last year.

These numbers suggest continued slow and stead growth in home prices. Price growth, however, is moderated by sales of foreclosed properties and short sales. Local real estate professionals report that the most activity in purchases is occurring at the lower price levels below $300,000.