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FNC index shows improving U.S. property values

OXFORD — U.S. property values continue to show signs of improvement, in line with indications of continued expansion in economic activity and better employment rates in recent months, according to FNC’s latest Residential Price Index (RPI).

Favorable developments in the housing sector, including declining foreclosure activities and rising home sales, have contributed to the continued price strengthening, according to a release from FNC. Higher listing prices and smaller listing price discount, in part driven by rising homeowners’ expectations about future prices, have also contributed to the improvement.

Based on recorded sales of non-distressed properties (existing and new homes) in the 100 largest metropolitan areas, the FNC 100-MSA composite index shows that home prices nationally were up 0.4 percent in October. This was the eighth consecutive month that prices moved higher, leading to a total appreciation rate of 5.1 percent year to date. The year-over-year growth is accelerating rapidly since first turning positive four months ago. Foreclosures as a percentage of total home sales were 17.6 percent in October, down from 26.7 percent at the beginning of the year or 23.5 percent a year ago.

Among the three composite indices, the 10-MSA composite index shows the largest month-over-month increase in October, up 1.1 percent from the previous month. The index’s year-over-year growth accelerated to 4.2 percent to reach levels realized before the housing crisis erupted. The majority of the component markets tracked by the FNC 30-MSA composite index show continued price improvement in October. (See the FNC Residential Price Index table.)  Denver recorded the largest month-to-month increase, up 3.5 percent from September. Home prices in Denver have risen at an average rate of 1.2 percent per month in 2012, which leads to a more than 12 percent price appreciation year-to-date.

On a year-over-year basis, Phoenix, Denver, Detroit, Washington, D.C., and Miami show the largest climbs, up 21.3 percent, 13.7 percent, 8.8 percent, 7.4 percent and 7.1 percent, respectively, from a year ago. The recovery in Phoenix continues to outpace the rest of the country. With the exception of Columbus, Ohio, and Chicago, all major housing markets are exhibiting a positive year-over-year and year-to-date price change.

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