South Florida home price increases surpass national average

South Florida outperformed most of the country with a 6.9 percent annual increase in home prices during June, a national report shows.

The growth in prices ranked Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade counties sixth among 20 metro areas nationwide, according to the S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller index released Tuesday.

Portland, Ore., led all areas with a 12.6 percent price gain, followed by Seattle (11 percent) and Denver (9.2 percent).

Dallas, at 8.9 percent, and Tampa, at 7.9 percent, were the only other markets with higher price increases than South Florida in June.

The national average was 5.1 percent.

David M. Blitzer, chairman of the index committee for S&P, said in a statement that the housing market overall remains healthy, driven in part by a limited supply of homes for sale.
"Nationally, home prices have risen at a consistent 4.8 percent annual pace over the last two years without showing any signs of slowing," he said.

Housing analysts consider the index one of the best barometers of home prices. It measures the price of the same house over time, though the index trails local realtor board figures by a month.

"I think the housing index is spot-on," said Summer Greene, general manager of Better Homes & Gardens Florida 1st in Fort Lauderdale. "We're now in what I would call a normal market. It takes 90 or 120 days to get a property sold, and we're not seeing as many multiple offers."

South Florida realtor boards released reports last week for July showing annual price increases among single-family homes in all three counties despite declines in sales.

Some agents say buyers are holding off because sellers aren't pricing properties to market value.

"Finding a right-priced property is a challenge, and that's causing the market to slow a little bit," said Carrie Hazen, of Re/Max Advantage Plus in Parkland.

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