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Portland sees home prices rise

July 5, 2012

Home prices rising
Josh Lehner
Oregon Office of Economic Analysis Blog

The latest Case-Shiller Home Price Indices showed that in general, home prices are increasing in April. In fact 17 out of 20 cities – Portland included – saw their home prices increase from March to April and 10 out of the 20 cities saw increases over the past year – Portland registered -0.9% over the year. All of which leads to graphs like this one from Calculated Risk that seem encouraging.

Indeed, this is encouraging and any movement upward is good news as it will help stem the tide of new foreclosures and firmer prices should provide a better foundation for the market to function at something approaching a more normal level, however underwater mortgages, short sales, REOs and shadow inventory will remain the norm for quite some more time. However, it is important to remember how much further we have to go across the country. The following graph uses FHFA data and shows the percentage of all MSAs in the country that have experienced positive year-over-year home price appreciation. While Case-Shiller in April is indicating 50% of the cities showing increases, the FHFA data for the first quarter puts that figure at 35% (135 out of the 384 MSAs tracked).

All told, the FHFA is expected to show continued gains across the country, however there are still a couple hundred MSAs that are not registering positive gains yet.

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