Sunday, September 5, 2010

Expert: Phoenix area home prices likely to stay flat for year

Since March, the Phoenix area housing market has taken three steps forward and one step back, according to a report issued Thursday by the W. P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University.

After three straight months of mild recovery, the Phoenix area housing market faltered in July, ASU reported.

The monthly ASU Repeat Sales Index was a zero in July, which means the median price of homes included in the study was the same as it had been in July 2009.

The report's author, professor Karl Guntermann, said the index is likely to remain at or near zero for the rest of the year.

"It is likely that house prices throughout the metro area will remain essentially flat for the next 12 months," said Guntermann, who co-wrote the report with Research Associate Adam Nowak. "While the improvement seen over the past 18 months isn't likely to continue, there also is no evidence that house prices will resume a downward trend, contrary to some published reports."

The ASU Repeat Sales Index measures annual changes in average Phoenix area home prices.

In June, the index was at about 2, down slightly from almost 3 in May.

The Valley housing market was still far more stable in July than it had been a year earlier, when home prices were down 27 percent from July 2008.

Guntermann said sales of foreclosed homes continued to show small price increases in July, while the price of a non-foreclosed homes decreased.

The median price for homes sold in July was $129,900, down slightly from $133,000 in June and $132,000 in May, the report said.

by J. Craig Anderson The Arizona Republic Aug. 27, 2010 12:00 AM

Expert: Phoenix area home prices likely to stay flat for year

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