Like so often in Detroit, good fortune smiled more on the metropolitan housing market than the inner city.

Metropolitan Detroit existing home sales rose 6.4% in the first quarter from a year earlier, but inner city transactions dipped 1.7% over the same period according to Realcomp.

The multiple listing service, which measures home sales in Southeast Michigan, said the median price in metro Detroit rose 9.9% to $63,300 over the same period.

Median sales price in inner Detroit, which also includes the cities of Hamtramck, Harper Woods and Highland Park, dropped 6.1% to $8,700.

Data for March give an even bleaker assessment of the inner Detroit market. Sales fell 13.1% from March 2011, and median price fell 10.1% to $7,650. Foreclosure sales more than doubled nonforeclosure deals.

Metro Detroit sales rose just 0.8% for March, but continued its streak of year-over-year growth. Prices jumped 18.7% to $68,850, and the number of listings on the market fell 20.4% from a year earlier.