The strongest improvements in median sale prices over the four-quarter period ending in June of 2013 were dominated by markets from the Sun Belt and Atlanta. These markets experienced some of the largest price declines following the subprime bust and economic recessions which were followed with a subsequent spike in foreclosures.
While investors in lower-priced properties in these markets led the early increases in home purchases and price growth in 2011, steady price appreciation in these markets has helped to attract additional investors and first-time homebuyers into the fray, spreading the price appreciation and stability to other portions of the market.
Several of the markets that experienced price declines are in states with a judicial foreclosure which take additional time relative to non-judicial states and create uncertainty for lenders. This uncertainty has weighed on price recovery in judicial states.
Ken Fears is the Manager of Regional Economics and Housing Finance Policy. He focuses on regional and local market trends found in the Local Market Reports and the Market Watch Reports . He also writes on developments in the mortgage industry and foreclosures.