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.
Experts say that the increase in existing home sales last month is yet another sign that the housing market is stabilizing and will soon improve. Purchases of existing homes increased by 3.4 percent in April.
Detroit is one of only three metro areas to show a rise in home prices, according to the Case-Shiller index released recently. The report shows that in January of 2012, home prices were up by 1.7% over the previous year. Experts say that it is difficult to draw conclusions from this set of data because of the large percentage of short-sales that are occurring in the metro area. Although for the last seven months prices have increased in Detroit, overall they are still below prices from the 2000.
Despite unfavorable housing data for 2012, market-watchers are saying there are signs of an improving real estate market. Experts from prominent ratings agency Moody's told reporters this week that even though some indicators are down, optimism is up.