The month of March marked a turning point for home prices, with real estate values remaining mostly flat over last year, but up from February, CoreLogic (CLGX) said Tuesday.
The Santa Ana, Calif.-based real estate analytics firm said home prices nationally declined a slight 0.6% in March when compared to a year earlier. At the same time, home values also rose 0.6% between the months of February and March, suggesting stability in a marketplace long plagued with declining prices.
When excluding distressed sales, March prices rose 0.9% from year ago levels.
"This spring the housing market is responding to an improving balance between real estate supply and demand which is causing stabilization in house prices," said Mark Fleming, chief economist for CoreLogic. "Although this has been the case in each of the last two years, the difference this year is that stabilization is occurring without the support of tax credits and in spite of a declining share of REO sales."
Inventory levels in certain markets are now low enough to lift home prices, especially in Phoenix, where prices increased 7.7% over last year, and New York where prices are up 2% year-over-year, CoreLogic said.
The states that experienced the most price appreciation in March included Wyoming (an increase of 5.9%); West Virginia (an increase of 5.3%); Arizona (an increase of 5.1%); North Dakota (an increase of 4.7%); and Florida (an increase of 4.5%).
States with the greatest home price depreciation included Delaware (down 10.6% year-over-year); Illinois (down 8.3%); Alabama (down 8%), Georgia (down 7.3%); and Nevada (down 5.8%).