Home values in April fell 0.77% relative to March levels and fell 8.0% relative to April 2010 levels (see Figure 2). The monthly depreciation was less than the 0.89% that homes values fell between November and December 2010, signaling some improvement in depreciation trends.
There continued to be a substantial disparity in depreciation rates between homes in the top and bottom tiers of home values. Monthly depreciation for the most expensive one-third of homes in each market was 0.74% while depreciation was 0.97% for the least expensive one-third of homes. See the second interactive chart below for trends broken out by value tier.
Foreclosure liquidations declined modestly in April with 10.0 out of every 10,000 homes in the country being liquidated in foreclosure, relative to 10.2 per ten thousand homes in March (see Figure 3). This rate is substantially higher than the recent low point reached in December 2010 when 8.8 per ten thousand homes were liquidated but also less than the high point of 11.3 per ten thousand homes reached in October before the foreclosure slow-downs began.
Foreclosure re-sales continued their upward march with the tenth consecutive record-breaking month in April in which 24% of all sales in the month were foreclosure re-sales. Foreclosure re-sales made up only 16% of transactions in April 2010. Note that this metric does not include short sales which may make up an equal portion of transactions in a given month currently. See the interactive data below for foreclosure re-sales rates by metro market.
In general, current trends are consistent with our earlier expectations of depreciation rates improving in the spring but from absolute levels that are high enough and at a pace that is slow enough that a bottom won’t be reached this year. Key drivers at this point are the pace of foreclosures and improvement in the employment picture. The latter, in turn, will boost household formation and consumer confidence (consumer confidence has been trending in the right direction in recent months but suffered a bit of a setback in May as seen in Figure 4).