by Bill McBride on 12/30/2012
According to housingtracker, median asking prices were up 2.5% year-over-year in December. We can’t read too much into this increase because these are just asking prices, and median prices can be distorted by the mix. As an example, the median asking price might have increased just because there are fewer low priced foreclosures listed for sale.
Note: The Trulia asking price index is adjusted for both mix and seasonality, but the housingtracker data is just the median, the 25th percentile and 75th percentile – and is impacted by both changes in the mix and seasonality.
But with those caveats, here is a graph of asking prices compared to the year-over-year change in the Case-Shiller composite 20 index.
The Case-Shiller index is in red. The Case-Shiller Composite 20 index was up 4.3% year-over-year in October, and will probably be up close to 6% in 2012.
The brief period in 2010 with a year-over-year increase in the repeat sales index was related to the housing tax credit.
Also note that the 25th percentile took the biggest hit (that was probably the flood of low end foreclosures on the market).
Now the year-over-year change in median asking prices has been positive for thirteen consecutive months. We have to be careful about the mix (fewer foreclosures on the market), but this suggests year-over-year selling prices will stay positive.
On seasonality, asking prices peaked in June and are down about 4% over the last six months. I expect this measure of asking prices to start increasing seasonally in February, and to stay positive year-over-year.