For the first time in eight months, home prices saw a month-over-month increase in April according to the Standard & Poors/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices.
During April, the 10- and 20-City composite indices increased 0.8% and 0.7% respectively, compared with their March 2011 levels. Both indices remain below their April 2010 levels.
“In a welcome shift from recent months, this month is better than last—April’s numbers beat March,” says David M. Blitzer, chairman of the Index Committee at S&P Indices. “However, the seasonally adjusted numbers show that much of the improvement reflects the beginning of the Spring-Summer home buying season. It is much too early to tell if this is a turning point or simply due to some warmer weather.”
Compared to April 2010, the indices show declines of 3.1% and 4%, respectively, with metropolitan statistical areas Charlotte, Chicago, Detroit, Las Vegas, Miami and Tampa seeing new index lows.
Regionally, 10 of the 20 MSAs showed positive monthly changes.
One the whole, the monthly uptick has been detected in other housing indicators as well.
“Other housing statistics show the same trends. Single-family housing starts were up in May, but still well below their 2010 levels and still very close to their 30-year low,” Blitzer said. “Existing home sales rose in May, but are still about 15% below last year’s pace and about 35% below their 2005 pace. …For a real recovery we would need to see several months of increasing home prices, large enough to shift the annual momentum to the positive side. In short, better news, but still a lot of questions and a long way to go.”
Written by Elizabeth Ecker