September saw the sixth consecutive month of rising home prices, according to new data released by the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices. The indices' 10- and 20-city composites showed annual returns of 2.1% and 3%, and the average home prices in both composites were each up by 0.3% in September versus August. The new data shows that national composite was up 3.6% in the third quarter versus the same period last year, and was up 2.2% versus the second quarter of 2012.
Seventeen of the 20 metropolitan areas tracked by the composites posted better annual returns in September versus August. Detroit and Washington, D.C., recorded a slight deceleration in their annual rates, while New York saw no change.
‘Home prices rose in the third quarter, marking the sixth consecutive month of increasing prices,’ says David M. Blitzer, chairman of the index committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices, who warns that the housing market may be in for a rough period. ‘We are entering the seasonally weak part of the year. The headline figures, which are not seasonally adjusted, showed five cities with lower prices in September versus only one in August; in the seasonally adjusted data the pattern was reversed: one city fell in September versus two in August.’
Separately, the home price index released by Jacksonville, Fla.-based Lender Processing Services (LPS) found home prices were up 0.1% for September and up 3.6% on a year-over-year measurement. LPS reports that Phoenix saw the largest monthly home price increase at 1.3%, while two Florida markets – Key West and Tallahassee – joined New Haven, Conn., in a three-way tie for the worst performing markets, with home prices falling 0.5% during the month.