OFHEO: Home Prices Chalk Worst Ever Decline

May 22, 2008 No Comments »


U.S. home prices fell 1.7 percent in the first quarter of 2008, according to the OFHEO’s seasonally-adjusted home price index.

The index, which relies on data from home sales (purchases only), fell at a faster rate than it previously had between the third and fourth quarters of 2007, when it slipped 1.4 percent.

The OFHEO added that home prices have fallen 3.1 percent since the first quarter of 2007, the most sizable decline in the purchase index’s 17-year history.

The housing authority’s all-transactions house price index (HPI), which includes data from both purchases and refinances, dipped 0.2 percent in the first quarter after a flat performance in the fourth quarter.

OFHEO director James B. Lockhart noted that both HPIs slowed less dramatic movement than other home price indicators, largely because homes financed with prime, conforming mortgages tend to perform better.

However, Lockhart added that the inflation-adjusted price of homes fell 7.7 percent since the first quarter of 2007 as the price of goods and services rose 4.6 percent.

Home prices fell in 43 states during the first quarter, with California (-10.6%), Nevada (-10.3%), and Florida (-8.1%) the leading offenders year-over-year.

On the flip side, Wyoming (6.3%), Utah (5.6%), and Montana (4.9%) experienced the greatest price appreciation since the first quarter of 2007.

Over the last year, the top 20 cities with the greatest price declines could all found in California and Florida, with the exception of Las Vegas-Paradise, Nevada.

(photo: luckyrob)

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