DETROIT (WWJ) There’s good news on the local home front, as real estate analyst firm Realcomp found April 2014 home prices in metro Detroit were up 24 percent year over year.

However, the number of sales is down in most communities.

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And believe it or not, that’s actually more good news — because lower inventory drives up prices.

Overall, Macomb County had 11 percent fewer houses on the market in April 2014, from the same month a year before; Oakland County had 14 percent fewer, and Oakland County, 16 percent. Dearborn Heights was down 8 percent, Grosse Pointe was flat.

At the same time, prices were steadily increasing, to an average of $118,000 across the region last month, up from $97,165 the same month a year ago.

The biggest gain in price happened in Dearborn Heights, which saw a nearly 30 percent increase in median sale price over last year. The average price is now $89,250, up from $68,750 in April 2013.

Oakland County, overall, increased to $168,500, from $155,000 a year ago; Wayne County moved to $70,000, from $50,000 — with Grosse Pointe as a bright blip, moving to $251,000, from $200,000 on average a year ago. Macomb County home prices increased to $118, 256 from $92,500 a year ago, and Detroit home prices moved from $9,900 to $12,000 on average.

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This is the 12th consecutive month that prices remained over the one hundred thousand dollar mark in Metro Detroit.

But it’s not necessarily all blue skies and sunshine for metro Detroit homeowners, said Randy Dean, a longtime housing market analyst. He thinks the uptick is strongest among the region’s most expensive houses.

“People are starting to buy more high-end stuff and the lower end has settled — because of that distribution of sales, that will drive the average and the median up, without saying anything about actual prices (in the middle),” Dean said.

He added: “Now, everybody’s rushing to the high end of the market — before, the low end was selling.”


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