Home Prices Up 10.4% in February, But Gains are Starting to Slow

Although home asking prices were up more than 10% in February, increases in asking prices are slowing down overall, according to the Trulia Price Monitor, despite remaining accelerated compared to historical levels. 

February asking home prices rose 10.4% on a national, year-over-year basis. But on a quarterly basis, it’s clear that price gains have been slowing for most of the last year, Trulia says.

Asking home prices rose less than 2% in February—similar to January and December rates—compared to a nearly 2.5% increase from July to November in 2013, and more than 3% from April to June 2013.  

“But even with this slowdown in gains, prices are still rising much faster than the historical norm,” says Trulia. “The quarter-over-quarter increase in February of 1.9% implies an annualized rate of almost 8%—which is well above the long-term average.” 

Chart source: Trulia

The top boom-and-bust markets in the U.S.—from the height of the housing bubble to its trough—have been leading the price recovery, and now they’re at the front of the price slowdown.

“The 10 U.S. metros with the biggest year-over-year price increases in February 2014 all experienced a severe housing bust after the bubble popped,” Trulia says. “Why? After prices fell in these markets, homes looked like bargains to investors and other buyers. At the same time, price drops also spurred foreclosures, which forced many families to become renters.” 

Las Vegas asking prices were up 30.3% year-over-year in February after a 61% boom-to-bust drop. Four California metros take up the rest of the top five: Oakland, Calif. saw prices jump 24.5% in February after a total 39% decrease;  Riverside-San Bernardino was up 24.1% Y-O-Y, after a 50% plummet; Sacramento was up 21.9% after 48% peak-to-trough drop; and Los Angeles saw an 18.9% increase after a 35% drop. 

Detroit, Warren-Troy-Farmington Hills, Mich., Fort Lauderdale, Fla., and Ventura County and Orange County, Calif., are also in the top 10 for biggest year-over-year asking prices increases as of February 2014. 

Read more about February price and rent trends at Trulia. 

Written by Alyssa Gerace

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