U.S. home prices increased 1.1% in February compared to January and were up 5.6% compared to February 2014, according to CoreLogic's home price index report.
Including distressed sales, 26 states and the District of Columbia were at or within 10% of their peak prices in June 2006, according to the report.
Excluding distressed sales – such as short sales and real estate owned (REO) transactions – home prices increased 1.5% compared to January and were up 5.8% compared to February 2014.
CoreLogic is forecasting that, including distressed sales, home prices will increase about 0.6% in March compared to February – which is also an increase of 5.1% compared to March 2014.
What's more, the firm predicts home prices will increase 4.8% year over year from February 2015 to February 2016.
‘Since the second half of 2014, the dwindling supply of affordable inventory has led to stabilization in home price growth, with a particular uptick in low-end home price growth over the last few months,’ says Frank Nothaft, chief economist for CoreLogic, in a statement. ‘From February 2014 to February 2015, low-end home prices increased by 9.3 percent compared to 4.8 percent for high-end home prices – a gap that is three times the average historical difference.’
‘This is the hottest home price appreciation prior to the spring selling season in nine years,’ adds Anand Nallathambi, president and CEO of CoreLogic. ‘Assuming a benign interest rate environment and continued strong consumer confidence, we expect home prices to rise by an additional five percent over the next 12 months.’
States that saw the most appreciation year over year in February, including distressed sales, were Colorado (9.8%), South Carolina (9.3%), Michigan (8.5%), Texas (8.5%) and Wyoming (8.4%).
Excluding distressed sales, states that saw the most appreciation year over year in February were South Carolina (9.7%), New York (9.2%), Colorado (9.0%), Texas (7.9%) and Florida (7.8%).
As of February, home prices including distressed sales were about 12.2% down from their peak in June 2006.
Excluding distressed sales, home prices were, on average, 7.8% below the peak seen in 2006.
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