Today’s S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices showed several cities enjoyed rising home prices recorded in the fourth quarter of 2009 like San Francisco where prices rose 4.8% from Q4 2008, followed by a 3% increase in Dallas and a 2.7% increase in San Diego. Washington, Denver, and Boston also saw price increases.
Nationally, the home prices dropped 2.5% but the numbers were massively drug down by cities like Las Vegas that dropped 20.6% and Tampa that dropped 11%, so the fact that so many cities increased is encouraging.
Ending 2009, 25% of mortgage holders owe more than their homes are worth, according to First American CoreLogic with problem areas like Nevada plaguing the national average as 70% of borrowers underwater. More than 50% of borrowers Florida and Arizona as well as 33% of California borrowers are underwater.
The ugly of all of this news is that it’s great that some cities saw home price increases, that saves some homeowners from being underwater, but for the areas that are suffering in home prices, the rate of those underwater is exaggerated. Some areas appear to be experiencing some stabilization but others (most notably Nevada) are still in critical condition.