The real estate market has reached a long-awaited benchmark this year. June home prices in 20 U.S. cities were higher than they were one year ago, according to the Case-Schiller Index, reports Business Week. This is the first year-over-year gain since 2010, when the first-time homebuyer tax credit temporarily boosted sales.
Economists feel that home prices may stick this time. In years past, prices gained momentum in the first part of the year and then fell back in the second half due to the flood of distressed properties on the market. The fact that completed foreclosures are down is an indicator of forward momentum.
- July 2012 foreclosures — 58,000
- July 2011 foreclosures — 69,000
“Overall the housing industry has come back,” said Standard and Poors’ David Blitzer in response to the Tuesday release of the S&P/Case-Schiller home price indices. Economists are optimistic, but how do homeowners feel? A recent CNBC All America Economic Survey shows that 27% of Americans anticipate an increase in the value of their homes for 2013, marking a peak in outlook since 2007, according to CNBC’s The Street. For more info on the Case-Schiller indices, check out the most recent press release.