Home prices in the top 20 U.S. metropolitan areas returned to their 2003 levels over the summer and are continuing to rise, according to a Standard & Poor’s/Case Shiller report released Tuesday.
The study found that average home prices in those major markets grew across the board, improving by 1.6 percent in July 2012 versus June 2012.
The data also showed a year-over-year increase of 1.2 percent compared with July 2011, with Phoenix (16.6 percent) and Minneapolis (6.4 percent) leading the pack. Washington-area home prices climbed 3.7 percent over the same period.
“The news on home prices in this report confirm recent good news about housing," David M. Blitzer, chairman of the Index Committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices, said in a statement. "Single family housing starts are well ahead of last year’s pace, existing home sales are up, the inventory of homes for sale is down and foreclosure activity is slowing. All in all, we are more optimistic about housing."
Still, prices remain nearly 30 percent below their peak in the summer of 2006, underscoring the profound effects of the subprime mortgage crisis.
Are you looking buy a home (or have you purchased one recently)? Have the ebb and flow of housing prices affected your decision making? And do you think home values are likely to continue rising, or could another bubble be upon us?
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