US property prices record highest rise for seven years

Property prices in America have experienced their biggest rise in seven years, according to data from a new survey.

The S&P/Case-Shiller Index reveals that property prices in the United States increased by 10.9 per cent in the year to March 2013 – a rise not seen since before the global credit crunch caused the country’s property market to go into meltdown in late 2007.



All 20 cities covered by the Index recorded price growth for the third consecutive month, with 12 of the cities experiencing double digit price growth in the past 12 months.

Phoenix, Arizona recorded the biggest price increases between March 2012 and March 2013, with values there increasing by 22.5 per cent, followed by San Francisco, California (22.2 per cent) and Las Vegas, Nevada (20.6 per cent).

The weakest annual price gains were seen in New York (2.6 per cent), Cleveland, Ohio (4.8 per cent) and Boston, Massachusetts (6.7 per cent). However, “even these numbers are quite substantial,” said David Blitzer, chairman of the index committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices.

“Other housing market data reported in recent weeks confirm these strong trends: housing starts and permits, sales of new home and existing homes continue to trend higher,” Blitzer continued. “At the same time, the larger than usual share of multi-family housing, a large number of homes still in some stage of foreclosure and buying-to-rent by investors suggest that the housing recovery is not complete.”

According to Blitzer, US house prices have now returned to levels not seen since 2003, but still remain around 28 per cent below their 2006 peak.

The optimism surrounding the US housing market’s perceived recovery has been further aided by data from a recent separate study which shows sales of new homes in the States rose to a five-year high in April, while sales of previously-occupied homes increased to the highest level in three and a half years.