The home price index published by the S&P and Case-Shiller is one of the central economic indicators that many experts use to evaluate the recovery. While single months of data are not definitive indicators of how the economy or the housing market is doing overall, the numbers that come out each month do help track general trends. For property owners and investors, the home price index can help predict when to buy and sell.

The index showed positive results and growth for 12 out of 20 major cities measured over the past year, which experts say suggests durable improvement for the housing market. Economists predict that housing will aid economic growth in 2012 for the first time since the recession hit.

For Detroit, improvements have been slight over the past few years but prices are still well below pre-recession rates. Forecasts by Bank of American Merrill Lynch say that prices are likely to remain flat this year and next, with more significant improvements mid-decade.

Of course, residential real estate prices are only one part of the overall picture of the real estate market in Michigan. We’ve written before about commercial development happening in the Detroit area, which will likely also attract professionals and families from other parts of the country, which can in turn have a positive effect on the resident real estate market.

Michigan real estate attorneys can help with a variety of concerns that investors or residential property owners may have. More information about real estate law is available on our website.

Source: USA Today, “Home price index shows gains in all 20 cities in May,” Timm Mullaney, July 31, 2012.

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