National home values rose for the second month in a row in April, climbing 0.7% from March to $147,300, according to the latest Zillow Home Value Index data. This is the largest monthly increase in home values since January 2006, when they rose 0.8%.
Zillow also reports that rents rose from March to April, increasing 1.6%. Rents rose in 78% of the 178 markets covered by Zillow.
Foreclosures continued to decline in April, Zillow adds, with 6.8 out of every 10,000 homes in the country being foreclosed. That was down from eight out of every 10,000 in March.
‘The housing market continues to show positive signs, with home values increasing significantly in April,’ says Zillow Chief Economist Stan Humphries. ‘The recovery is moving in the right direction, but we caution that negative equity will cast a long shadow over the housing market. With almost one-third of homeowners with mortgages underwater and unable to sell their homes, inventory is having a hard time keeping up with increasing demand in many areas. We'll continue to watch this signal as increasing home values turn from a blip into a trend.’