Real Estate prices are up for single family homes in the Phoenix Valley but you could have missed it if you hadn't read the end of two articles buried on page D-2 of the Wednesday and Thursday editions of the Arizona Republic.
As I have been saying for some time now, prices bottomed out in March of 2009.
On Wednesday we learned that Phoenix is one of 91 major cities out of 152 nationwide to post an increase in home prices during the past year.
This National Association of Realtors survey showed that prices of existing homes climbed 9.1% in the Phoenix area for the year ended March 31, 2010. You might have expected that kind of good news would have been a headline -- but no.
On Thursday, the following day, there was even better news ... yet again buried on page D-2 of the Republic's Business section: The median resale price for a single family home in April was $144,000, up 15.2% from $125,000 a year ago.
So there you have it. In historic terms, that is a huge increase. Several of my clients who have recently purchased homes at great prices realize that, if they had started nine months earlier, they might have realized even more of an increase. I had to confirm their speculation.
So what does all this news mean? It means the real estate market has officially bottomed out and that home prices are rising. Good news for homeowners hoping to sell in the not-too-distant future. And some homeowners may no longer be upside down.
To investors, I would say "the train is leaving the station." A conversation yesterday with one of the top REO (bank-owned property) realtors in our office confirmed that the number of foreclosed properties coming his way has slowed down to a trickle. At a recent national conference several of the large banks indicated they are severing their relationship with thousands of realtors. Apparently the banks are actively pursuing every possible alternative before going the foreclosure route. So MLS investment properties will be diminishing and those that do appear will create a bidding frenzy and prices at the wholesale end should start climbing again.
My next blog will cover a new option for bidding on line for bank properties and getting them before they hit the MLS listings. Stay tuned.