The price per square foot of homes improved from February to March in 11 of 25 metro areas tracked, real estate analytics and data company Radar Logic reported this week.

The composite price-per-square-foot index for the 25 metro areas fell 0.3 percent on a month-over-month basis in both February and March, which is less than the 1.2 percent and 0.9 percent declines in February and March 2008.

Radar Logic noted in an announcement that the price-per-square-foot declines have moderated since January 2009, "after being in a virtual freefall for much of 2008."

Prices decreased on a month-over-month basis in four of the five California metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) tracked by Radar Logic.

The price per square foot shrank in all 25 markets year-over-year in March, with the most substantial declines in Phoenix (-37.1 percent), Las Vegas (-35.3 percent) and San Francisco (-34.5 percent).

The slightest year-over-year decline in March was in Charlotte, N.C. (-4.6 percent), followed by Milwaukee (-4.8 percent) and Columbus, Ohio (-5.2 percent).

Motivated sales — defined as sales to third parties at foreclosure auctions and sales of foreclosed homes by financial institutions and foreclosure service firms, increased in 23 MSAs on a year-over-year basis, and in 21 MSAs in a month-over-month basis.

Transactions increased on a month-over-month basis in 23 MSAs in March, comparable to the February results.

Riya V. Anandwala

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