After Five Years of Declines, US Home Prices Begin to Stabilize

An analysis of home price trends in more than 275 US markets based on the Fiserv® Case-Shiller Indexes show that a growing number of metro area housing markets are beginning to stabilize after five years of record home price declines.

In the third quarter of 2010, U.S. single-family home prices saw an average decrease of just 1.5 percent over the year-ago quarter.  Fiserv and Moody’s Analytics report that home prices have already leveled out in one out of four metro areas. They estimate that price stability will characterize 75 percent of U.S. metro markets by the end of this year and 100 percent of markets by the end of 2012.

Even as metro markets stabilize, the Fiserv Case-Shiller data analysis indicates a slow recovery in home prices with many false starts, especially in markets with large amounts of foreclosed properties.

“Large supplies of foreclosed properties will continue to be the biggest downside risk for home prices and metro area housing markets,” said David Stiff, chief economist, Fiserv. “Foreclosure activity declined at the end of 2010, but sales activity of bank-owned homes increased. In bubble and crash markets, the uncertain timing and volume of bank liquidated properties will cause home prices to bounce around their lows for many years.”


Markets where prices have already stabilized include San Diego, Washington, D.C., and San Francisco.  Fiserv expects that home prices will stabilize in Minneapolis, New York City and Portland by the end of 2011.  Some areas where values will not stablize until 2012 include Miami, Phoenix, and Las Vegas.

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