The recently released S&P Case/Shiller Index , a closely-monitored gauge of U.S. home prices, revealed Los Angeles had the second-biggest increase in house prices last year of the 20 major cities measured in the index. The other big news: home appreciation has begun to slow after more than a year of huge increases.
Here’s some other takeaways from the report:
–Home prices actually fell slightly each of the past two months. In December, home prices in the index fell by .10%–the same as in November.
–The overall index showed that for the year, home prices in the 20 major metro areas increased by 13.4%. That was a slower rate of appreciation than in 2012.
–In Los Angeles, home prices were up 20.3% in December as compared to December 2012. Only Las Vegas (25.5%) saw a bigger year-over-year increase.
The chairman of the Index Committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices, David M. Blitzer, commented on the reports findings in a press release.
“The S&P/Case-Shiller Homer Price index ended its best year since 2005,” Blitzer said. “However, gains are slowing from month-to-month and the strongest part of the recovery in home values may be over.”
He continued that the seasonally-adjusted data “also exhibit some softness and loss of momentum.”
So it appears home prices are finally stabilizing across the nation, but in Los Angeles there has been little slowdown in the rate of increases. That means affordability for many potential homebuyers in the Southland is likely to continue to be a big issue, but also means more available homes could come online as more homeowners accrue equity.