Bubble fears popped as asking prices taper off

by Ryan Smith13 Aug 2013

Home asking prices dipped slightly in July – the first month-over-month decrease since November.

Asking prices fell 0.3% in July as inventory expanded, mortgage rates rose and investor demand slackened, according to the Trulia Price Monitor.
“If you were worried about a housing bubble, July’s asking-price slowdown will probably be the best news you’ve heard this year,” said Jed Kolko, Trulia’s chief economist. “The asking home price slowdown in July could be the start of the return to normal price gains. The blazing fast price increases we’ve seen in recent months could not last, especially with rising mortgage rates, expanding inventory, and declining investor interest.”

Seasonally adjusted, home prices rose by 3.3% quarter over quarter, slowing from a peak 4.4% rise in April. Year over year, prices rose by 11% nationally.

The asking price gain was lower in 64 out of 100 metro areas than last quarter’s gain, with the biggest lags in Las Vegas and several California metro areas.

“The biggest price slowdowns have come to some of the hottest local markets,” Kolko said. “California and Nevada remain the Wild West for asking home prices, with some of the sharpest drops during the bust, strongest rebounds over the past year, and now biggest slowdowns in the past quarter. In the rest of the country, the ride is less wild, but is on the same track: price gains have cooled in almost two-thirds of the largest metros.”


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