Pent-up demand and a limited supply of homes for sale boosted U.S. home prices 12.1 percent in April compared to a year earlier, real estate analytics firm CoreLogic said June 4. That marks the largest increase since the height of the housing bubble in February 2006. Even the monthly price gain between March and April 2013 was notable, at 3.2 percent.
Less remarkable, however, were the housing price numbers posted on Long Island. Nassau and Suffolk County home prices ticked up just 2.6 percent in the last year, data provided to Newsday.com by CoreLogic showed. And prices actually fell 0.6 percent between March and April.
Not only do those figures trail the national data, but they also pale in comparison to gains posted by New York State and by the New York metropolitan area (which CoreLogic classifies as the city, White Plains and Wayne, N.J.). Housing prices were up 8.2 percent statewide and 7.3 percent in the New York City area.
This, of course, follows the trend noted last month, with local housing prices rising far more slowly than those in the rest of the country. That’s because Long Island is far behind in the recovery process largely due to a backlog of foreclosures waiting to be processed.
One interesting tidbit in the report that illustrates this point is how distressed sales influence price fluctuations. Excluding distressed sales from the data tempers the price gains slightly in the large majority of markets across the country, but on Long Island excluding those properties actually lifts the measured price increase to 3.4 percent.
That could mean that Wall Street investors aren't swarming the Island’s distressed properties and driving up prices -- as they are in areas of Nevada, Arizona and California that have been experiencing the largest price growth, according to recent reports. Perhaps they see the backlog of foreclosures – 24.3-months supply worth of them, according to CoreLogic -- and don’t believe the supply-demand ratio hints at rebounding prices (or return on their investment) in the near future.