Home prices continued to rise through April 2013, with average home prices increasing 11.6% and 12.1% for the 10- and 20-city composites year-over-year, according to the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices. 

For the fourth consecutive month, all 20 cities included in the indices as well as both composites reported positive year-over-year returns.

Atlanta, Dallas, Detroit and Minneapolis saw the highest annual gains since the start of their respective indices. Month-over-month, Detroit was the only city that did not report positive change. In March 2013, only 13 cities showed improvement.

The 10- and 20-city composites experienced their highest monthly gains since the start of the HPI. Thirteen cities reported month-over-month price increases of more than two percentage points, with San Francisco leading at 4.9%. 

"The recovery is definitely broad based. The two composites showed the largest year-over-year gains in seven years. Atlanta, Las Vegas, Phoenix and San Francisco posted year-over-year gains of over 20% in April," said David Blitzer, chairman of the Index Committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices.

San Francisco saw the highest gain at 23.9%. Phoenix reported 12 consecutive months of double-digit growth. "Recent economic data on home sales and inventories confirm the housing recovery’s strength," said Blitzer. 

According to Blitzer, last week’s comments from the Fed and the resulting sharp increase in Treasury yields sparked fears that rising mortgage rates will damage the housing rebound. Homebuyers have survived rising mortgage rates in the past, often by shifting from fixed rate to adjustable rate loans. 

He added, "In the housing boom, bust and recovery, banks’ credit quality standards were more important than the level of mortgage rates. The most recent Fed Senior Loan Officer Opinion Survey shows that some banks are easing credit restrictions. Given this, the recovery should continue." 

As of April 2013, average home prices across the United States returned to their early 2004 levels for both the 10-city and 20-city composites. Measured from their 2006 peaks, the peak-to-current decline for both composites is about 26% to 27%. From the March 2012 lows, the recovery is 13.1% and 13.6%, respectively.

Atlanta, Detroit, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Miami, Minneapolis, Phoenix, Portland, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle and Tampa all posted double-digit annual gains.

The chart below summarizes the price gains for April 2013.