There is some great news in real estate… The FHFA (Federal Housing Finance Agency) reported that home prices posted a 19th consecutive monthly gain in August.
We are getting there, but this report also shows that the average market level is still 9.4% below the price peek of April 2007, right before the housing market crashed.
Values increased in seven of the nine Census Divisions in August with the South Atlantic and East North Central divisions experiencing declines. The South Atlantic region, which encompasses all coastal states from Florida to Delaware, was down 0.5 percent and the East North Central (Wisconsin, Michigan, Indiana, Ohio, and Illinois) division saw prices go down just 0.3 percent.
The largest value increases were in the Mountain (Utah, Montana, Colorado, Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, Idaho) and West North Central (North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, Iowa, Nebraska, Kansas, and Missouri) divisions which rose 1.3 percent and 1.2 percent respectively.
The August 2012 to August 2013 changes were largest in the Pacific Region (Oregon, Washington, California, Alaska, and Hawaii) where homes appreciated 18.2 percent and the Mountain division with a 13.8 gain. The smallest annual increase was in the Middle Atlantic division is Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York, where prices were up 4.0 percent.
As values continue to rise, more and more sellers can safely sell their homes – which should help with inventory issues. It also means that potential first time home buyers really need to jump into the market to buy a home TODAY, as those gains for sellers equals less buying power for buyers.