Home Price increase loses Momentum

Home price increases are slowing down across the United States. They have been inching up over the last year, but the increase of just 0.2% in the first quarter of this year , from the last quarter of 2013 is slow. Compared with a year earlier the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index report, national home prices were up 10.3%.
Smaller increases in home values, means less wealth, less spending, and dulling of the consumer confidence. Stalled home prices limit choices for 1st time home buyers, less upward mobility and less choices with new home builders.
The index covering 10 major cities increased 12.6% last year ending in March. While the 20 city index advanced 12.4% yearly, better than the 11.8% expected by economists. That is a slow down from February’s 12.9%. This is trending down slowly, but trending DOWN.
Annual price increases for two composites have slowed down in the last FOUR months. The slowdown reflects weaker demand- the reports noted mortgage rates have risen, Fed’s lending standards are a problem, student loan debt is too high,( not allowing first time home buyers to enter the market). The market is in unstable ground when small influences began to affect demand. This could be a slower year don’t expect a lot of appreciation of value.
Tucson runs a course that is different than national trends- we are a lagging city. Tucson can be as much as two years behind other markets- jobs come first to revive our market. Currently values are at 2004 levels.