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According to Zillow’s first quarter Real Estate Market Reports, which came out today, national home values posted their biggest monthly gain in nearly six years, and 19 of the 30 largest metros covered by Zillow have either hit a bottom, or will by the end of 2012.

The Zillow Home Value Index (ZHVI) rose 0.5% from February to March, marking the largest monthly increase since May 2006 – before home values peaked.

To further add to the good news, we expect some markets to experience substantial home value gains over the next 12 months. In the Phoenix metro, the Zillow Home Value Forecast shows a gain of 6.5% from March 2012 to March 2013. In Miami, home values are expected to climb 5.6%.

What does this mean for consumers?

“For people who have been waiting to time their home purchases close to the market bottom, it’s time to start shopping,” said Zillow Chief Economist Dr. Stan Humphries.

While we don’t expect to see national home values continue to climb at a rate of 0.5% per month, it’s safe to assume they won’t fall much further in most markets. The Zillow Home Value Forecast predicts a national bottom in home values in the fourth quarter of this year.

For further analysis, visit the Zillow Research page.

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