The S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices report for April 2009 was released yesterday. The report says "that, although still negative, the annual decline of the 10-City and 20-City Composites improved." Left unsaid was that some of the lowest mortgage rates on record were available in April, rates that have increased since. May and June's data will be crucial to determine whether strength is really returning to the market
"The pace of decline in residential real estate slowed in April,” says David M. Blitzer, Chairman of the Index Committee at Standard & Poor’s. “In addition to the 10-City and 20-City Composites, 13 of the 20 metro areas also saw improvement in their annual return compared to that of March. Furthermore, every metro area, except for Charlotte, recorded an improvement in monthly returns over March. While one month’s data cannot determine if a turnaround has begun; it seems that some stabilization may be appearing in some of the regions. We are entering the seasonally strong period in the housing market, so it will take some time to determine if a recovery is really here."
YoY, DC area prices fell 16.88% and, from March to April, prices increased 0.78%. The DC area's home price index is close to that of December 2003 and January 2004.
The charts below reflect home price data for the Washington, DC MSA.