Industry News

Number of ‘overvalued’ housing markets climbs

Study: 71 metro areas deemed overvalued

The cover of last week's Economist asks, "Is your home overvalued?" It's a question on many people's minds as they watched the market value of their homes double and triple during the housing boom. Seventy-one metropolitan areas, accounting for 39 percent of all single-family housing value, were labeled "overvalued" for the first quarter of 2006, according to a recent report. The number is up from 64 markets, or 36 percent of all single-family market value, during the fourth quarter of 2005. The report, prepared by Global Insight and National City Corp., says that overvaluation became more pervasive during first-quarter 2006. As recently as first-quarter 2004, only three metro areas were deemed overvalued. A market is deemed "overvalued" when the rate of price appreciation exceeds 34 percent, and the report bases this finding on an historical examination of 66 actual metro-area price corrections during the 1985-2005 period. "Interestingly, price appreciation continues to be strongest...