Report: April Data Illustrate Real Estate Prices Starting to Rise

Mountain View, California (EastBayDaily) — The Altos 10-City Composite Price Index increase by 2.2% during April and 3.3% during the most recent three month period. Prices of properties listed for sale rose in 22 of 26 major markets and were down in four markets according to the Real-Time Housing Market Report, jointly published by Altos Research, the premier source for real-time real estate statistics.

Listing prices rose at the fastest rate in the California markets with San Jose up 3.7%, Los Angeles up 3.2% and San Diego up 2.8% in April. Prices in 18 markets are now showing three months of sequential listing price increases. Asking prices fell at the fastest rate during April in Las Vegas followed by Salt Lake City – down 3.8% and 2.6% respectively.

“Broadly rising asking prices in this difficult economic environment demonstrate the powerful effect of seasonality in the housing industry,” said Stephen Bedikian, partner and research director for Real IQ. “We expect to see continued strength during the next few months of the spring selling season fueled by historically low mortgage rates. We won’t be able to call a bottoming of the market until we see stability continue into the seasonally weak fall and winter months.”

Inventory levels decreased in a majority of major markets with inventory falling in 15 of 26 markets. Across the 10-City Composite Index markets, inventory fell by 1.5% in April and was effectively unchanged during the most recent three-month period. Inventory grew by the largest amount in Boston up 6.3% followed by Austin up 4.9%. Inventory fell by the largest amount in Phoenix and San Francisco where it contracted by 11.0% and 7.1% respectively.

“A decline in inventory levels is atypical for this time of the year,” said Michael Simonsen co-founder and chief executive officer of Altos Research. “The important question is whether inventory growth will remain restrained or whether pent-up supply will come on to the market in succeeding months. There is no surer way to snuff out a recovery in housing prices than a flood of inventory that overwhelms demand.”

During April all markets except Portland, San Francisco and Salt Lake City had a median days-on-market of 100 or more. By far, the market with the slowest rate of inventory turnover was again Miami, now at a median of 246 days-on-market or more than eight months. Miami has experienced the slowest market turnover in every month since September 2007. Portland experienced the fastest rate of inventory turnover at a median of 82 days-on-market, followed by San Francisco at 96 days.

Data in the Real-Time Housing Market Report is based on analysis of over one million properties currently listed for-sale in 26 metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs): Atlanta, Austin, Boston, Charlotte, Chicago, Cleveland, Dallas, Denver, Detroit, Houston, Indianapolis, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Miami, Minneapolis, New York, Phoenix, Portland, Salt Lake City, San Diego, San Francisco, San Jose, Seattle, Tampa, and Washington, DC. The first report was published December 7, 2007 and is released every month.

About Altos Research Altos Research LLC pioneered real-time real estate research. Founded in 2005, the company’s information products serve investors, traders, and thousands of real estate professionals. Because real estate data is traditionally obscure and highly latent, Altos built the Real-Time Market Intelligence(TM) platform to monitor dozens of housing market metrics as they are right now in local markets across the country. The company publishes real estate statistics for thousands of local markets around the country. Download the Altos Research National Real Estate Report __title__ national real estate statistics].


Michael Simonsen
Altos Research