Most MSAs see significant home price decline in November: Radar Logic
Most major metropolitan statistical areas experienced significant declines in home prices in November from a year earlier, according to the Radar Logic RPX composite price index released Thursday. The report said November home prices fell in 22 of the 25 MSAs tracked by Radar Logic, with the largest declines in Atlanta (down 12.7%), Chicago (down 10.5%), Miami (down 9.3%) and Minneapolis (down 8.9%). Homes prices for November remained essentially flat with October, increasing just 0.3%. Radar Logic said that upward swing will be short-lived. "Based on the historical pattern of housing price changes in autumn and winter, we expect to see declines in the RPX composite resume when the December 2010 RPX values are published next month," the firm said. On a month-over-month basis, home prices in Milwaukee, Jacksonville, New York and Seattle increased the most — up 5.6%, 3.6%, 2.2% and 1.9%, respectively. The number of sales transactions between Oct. 18 and Nov. 18 fell 2.5%, marking the sixth consecutive month of declines. Transactions fell in 15 MSAs. Compared to 2009, transactions for the period plummeted 25.6% no longer aided by the government's homebuyer tax-incentive plan that expired in April, Radar Logic said. "In fall 2009, the federal government bolstered housing demand and therefore sales by offering tax credits to homebuyers and reducing mortgage rates through the Fed's purchases of over $1.4 trillion in mortgage-backed securities and agency debt," the report said. "These initiatives were phased out by mid-2010, and transaction counts decline year-over-year in all 25 MSAs tracked by Radar Logic as a result." Of the transactions that occurred during the month, 28% are attributable to "motivated sales," or foreclosure sales/auctions by financial institutions. This number is up 23% from one year prior, and is expected to increase in the coming months as Radar Logic predicts more homebuyers will strategically default and their homes will be repossessed by the banks. Lender Processing Services reported in November nearly 2.2. million mortgage loans were 90 days or more delinquent. Write to Christine Ricciardi. Follow her on Twitter @HWnewbieCR.