Seattle is one of nine cities where housing markets hit new lows in February, according to a report on house prices by the Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices.
Atlanta had the biggest annual skid in house prices in the country, down a whopping 17.3 percent from February last year. It’s the fifth month of double-digit drops for the city, putting Atlanta at a 20-year low. Atlanta also tied Chicago for the biggest one-month slide in house prices, down 2.5 percent from January to February.
In comparison, Seattle’s house prices were down 2.9 percent from February 2011 and 0.8 percent from January.
Five of the 20 metropolitan areas surveyed had gains in house prices: Denver, Detroit, Miami, Minneapolis and Phoenix. Hard hit during the housing bust, Phoenix now has had five consecutive months of positive monthly returns, although prices are still down 54.2 percent from their peak, according to the report.
As of February 2012, average home prices nationally based on a 20-city composite are back to where they were in late 2002. That’s about 35 percent off prices in the housing market’s peak in the summer of 2006.
On the brighter side, the rate of annual price declines for the 20-city composite slowed a bit in February. Prices were down 3.5 percent, compared to a decline of 3.9 percent in the prior month.
JEANNE LANG JONES covers commercial real estate for the Puget Sound Business Journal. Phone: 206-876-5426 | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Click here to sign up for the PSBJ Daily Update.