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Home Prices Rise in 20 Cities, Stay Flat in DC Area

For the 12-month period ending in July, Standard & Poor's index shows national improvement in the housing market.

Housing prices are on the increase in most major cities, but prices are at the same levels as last year in the Washington, DC metro area, according to analysts.

Washington, DC saw no change in its housing prices compared with last year's numbers, according to a statement from Standard & Poor's, the American financial services agency that compiles the data and rankings.

Nationally, prices increased by 1.2 percent in the past year, reported USA Today.

Phoenix, AZ, which was hard hit by the recession, had the biggest year-over-year increase in housing prices, at 17 percent, reported Bloomberg.

Prices for homes in Washington, DC increased by 3.7 percent, according to the Standard & Poor's data from July 2011 to July 2012; but with an annual adjustment rate factored in, there was no change overall.

Economists say that housing prices being on the uptick will encourage more spending.

"Stronger housing numbers are a positive factor for other measures, including consumer confidence," said David M. Blitzer, chair of the Index Committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices, in a statement. "All in all, we are more optimistic about housing. Upbeat trends continue."

Even so, home prices are 30 percent below what they were in 2006 nationally, when the housing bubble was at its peak, reports ABC News.

Flat prices may not be a bad thing for Howard County, according to one newspaper that notes that pricey housing could be costing the county residents.

With a median home price of $410,000 in Howard County, The Baltimore Sun reports families are opting to move instead to Carroll and Queen Anne's for school districts, where there is also lower residential density.

Howard County Housing will host a workshop for prospective renters and buyers from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 29, at the Ascend One Building (8930 Stanford Blvd.) in Columbia. 

Robert Rey September 27, 2012 at 11:41 AM
Carroll and Queen Anne are nice places to live. However, the schools are not the same as Howards and if you work in DC, your commute is way to long and stressfull.

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