Dallas-area Home Prices Up by Largest Percentage in More Than a Decade

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Steve Brown of The Dallas Morning News reports that Dallas-area home prices are up by the largest percentage in more than a decade in the latest measure of nationwide home values. And, Brown points out, more significant price hikes could be on the way this year.

Dallas prices rose 5.7 percent in November from a year ago in the most-recent monthly Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller Home Price Index.

November was the ninth month in a row that local prices were up from a year earlier in the closely watched comparison of home values.

Local home inventory levels are at the lowest point since the early 2000s, and longtime industry analysts say that North Texas could be in for some even bigger price increases in 2013.

“If you own a house and want to sell, it’s probably the best time in years,” according to Dr. James Gaines, an economist at the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University.

The number of pre-owned homes on the market in North Texas last year was down about 20 percent. And inventories of new homes are at the lowest point in more than a decade.

With interest rates low and the economy gaining ground, the number of homebuyers in the market this spring is expected to climb significantly.

Gaines said that the Real Estate Center estimates that Dallas-area pre-owned home prices were up 7.6 percent in 2012 from 2011. It was the first year of median price increases since before the recession.

Gaines believes prices could possibly rise at double-digit rates this year if the supply of homes on the market stays tight.

“Housing is clearly recovering,” S & P’s David Blitzer notes in the report. “Prices are rising, as are both new and existing home sales. These figures confirm that housing is contributing to economic growth.”

DallasNews.com subscribers may click here to see the full article from Steve Brown.

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